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Opening Magic Kingdom

Opening Magic Kingdom

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Through the Years. . .

A reader asked for a timeline of sorts of all our trips to Walt Disney World and Disney Cruises. So, here it is with a bit of info from each trip:

Our first visit was November 2006, during Thanksgiving. The boy had just turned 4. We were grateful he could sleep in a big bed, use fork, and use the bathroom. We brought our own stroller ensemble. . . you know the kind, heavy duty, with lots of room underneath, where the bar in front lifts up to let the rider get in and out. I remember fondly trying to squeeze that baby onto the buses. We stayed at Caribbean Beach Resort. There were a couple of days when it was really cold. Lows in the 30's and highs in the 50's. I bought my black Mickey gloves during that trip and still use them. Our stroller died shortly after this trip--too many Disney miles!

Next came our first Disney Cruise in March of 2007. We had actually booked this trip first--the previous June. Then we thought that it might be best to visit the World first, hence the November trip. The boy was 4, but an older 4. We did a 4 night itinerary with a stops in Nassau, Castaway Cay, and a day at sea. The boy loved the club. I remember one day on the ship when we were getting ready to go for the day and he said, "Mom, can I have 5 minutes in my club?" I replied that he would get to go to his club later.

I had heard stories of some kids not liking or wanting to go to the kids club on board. Fortunately, we don't have that problem. If it were a concern I would do a couple of things: go on-line and tour the kids clubs and watch the planning DVD from the cruise line--which we did. Also, we make sure he gets to the club on our first evening on board. All the kids are new to the club at this stage, so meeting people and getting the routine is easier. If they go later, some of those routines and relationships are already established.

The second trip to the World was in September 2007. The boy was still 4. After using personal days and doing some trading of days at work, we stayed the week of Labor Day. We got the free dining special, which was a significant savings. We had a new, more compact stroller for this trip. The boy was almost too big for it, but still needed it. We have a couple of photos that represent the "I hate my stroller/ I love my stroller" feeling. We tried lots of new restaurants on this trip and stayed at Caribbean Beach Resort. We enjoyed the Pirate and Princess Party at the Magic Kingdom.

Our second cruise came next in July 2008. The boy was 5 and 1/2. It was a 7 night Mexican Riviera itinerary with stops in Cabo, Mazatlan, and Puerto Vallarta. (Click on each port to read more.) When we left Kansas City, the temps were near 100. When we arrived in LA, it was much more temperate with highs in the 70's. I was so surprised by that. We celebrated our anniversary and re-booked for our next cruise on board giving us a significant discount and on board credit.

A vivid memory was when we disembarked. Since we were flying back the next day, we had booked a room at the Crown Plaza in San Pedro. A shuttle from the hotel was to pick us up at the pier. So, here we are at the World Cruise Terminal with our luggage calling the hotel for a pick-up and they said it a van would be by sometime in the next 30 minutes. The husband said, "Well, I guess that's the end of the Disney service." So true! You have no idea how well you are being served until you are not being served. We appreciate the service more now.

Our next trip to the World was September 2008 and the boy was still 5. I know, it was almost a month from our cruise. We laughed about that on the way home from the cruise that it would be almost a month before we were back in Disney! Anyway, after using personal time and trade days, we stayed the week of Labor Day and took advantage of the free dining offer again. We meant to take the stroller, but realized half way to Kansas City that we had forgotten it. Oh, well, this would be our first trip to the World without a stroller. All went well!

Traveling to Disney in September, it is hot and humid. Even though it is still hurricane season, we never experienced any storms. In fact, the only rain we have ever had (knock on wood) was during our last trip. This trip was our first trip using Photopass (click here to read about Disney's Photopass service) and we had a very magical day at the Magic Kingdom--to read more click here. We stayed at Port Orleans--Riverside for the first time. We celebrated at Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party--click here to read more.

March of 2009, when the boy was 6, was our next trip to the World. We had a special of stay 4 nights get 3 nights and tickets free along with a $200 gift card. It was also the husband's birthday--click here to about best day. The weather was great--highs in the 70's and 80's, lows in the 50's and no humidity to speak of. This was our first Spring Break trip to the World. We stayed at Port Orleans Riverside.

November 2009, just days after the boy turned 7, was our next trip to the World. We had a free dining special and the weather was great, as were the crowds! Click here to read about our most magical day. We enjoyed Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party--click here to read more. A bounce back special was available if you booked your next stay before checking out. We made a reservation for the same time next year with a savings of 35%. Now, we just need to keep an eye out for the free dining special!

Our third Disney Cruise was December of 2009. The boy was 7 and still enjoyed the club. We had a 7 night Western Caribbean itinerary with stops in Key West, Grand Cayman, Cozumel, and Castaway Cay. We re-booked on board for our next cruise on Disney's new ship the Dream, giving us a significant discount and on board credit. The boy is worried that he might be too "big" for some of the new cool stuff on board for kids. He will definitely be big enough for to ride "The Duck!"

Our most recent trip to the World was March of 2010. The boy was 7. We stayed at Port Orleans Riverside and had a stay 4 nights get 3 nights and tickets free special, which saved us about 42% on our stay. Click here to read about the most magical day of our 6th visit. Yes, the magic does continue and gets even better.

We were at the band concert the other night and an adult friend asked the boy how he felt about Disney World and the boy said "I hate Disney World." A surprising answer from a boy who has been to the World more than a handful of times. Yet, if you look at the photos you can see there is not an element of hate. I am going to chalk up the comment to the growing up stance of not liking something your parents do like. Otherwise, we will need to find people to leave him with because his parents are still going to go to Walt Disney World! Any volunteers?

Ok, so there you have it. More than most, fewer than some. And, here's to more trips to the World and Disney Cruises! "clink"

1 comment:

  1. Awesome!! Thanks so much for the time line, it helps to make sense of what was magical when for your son!!