Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Just 2 More Sleeps

2 sleeps left and I've got much more to do than I want to admit. I've been very bad at getting things done early for this trip.  I've been crazy busy, pushing my limits, and quite honestly I haven't even packed yet. I did however get my laundry done, so packing is on today's to do list right after the couple of sewing projects that I have to finish up.

When we leave Rockford it will be 4°F.  While I have some serious guilt about leaving Eric behind at home my self preservation is making it difficult for me to feel bad about heading for warmer climates.  The cold has been killer on my Fibromyalgia, every time I walk out the door the cold hits my skin and I instantly get a migraine. It sucks and the fact that warmer weather is in my near future is the most joyous thing of all.

My health has not been great the past few weeks and I'm happy that I made the choice to rent a scooter for this trip. We have a ton of firsts happening on this trip, so with luck I'll have plenty to write about when I return. 
  • 1st time flying out of Milwaukee
  • 1st time taking my family to Hoop-dee-doo with the new show
  • 1st time eating at Be Our Guest
  • 1st Time eating at Raglan Road
  • 1st time on a cruise for Tori
  • 1st time with a Magic Porthole
  • 1st time with my new camera
  • 1st time trying the DTD Food Trucks
  • 1st time at Animal Kingdom for Geordon
  • 1st time meeting talking Mickey Mouse
  • 1st time with Memory Maker
  • 1st time with Magic Bands
  • 1st time with the new DAS card
  • 1st time seeing the new Polynesian Lobby
  • 1st time going one the Winnie The Pooh Ride
  • 1st time going on Seven Dwarfs Mine Train
It all happens in just 2 more sleeps!

Friday, February 13, 2015

6 More Sleeps Will Go Quickly

6 more sleeps! I feel like I have *so* much to do, it's going to go by quickly. I need to alter some clothes for the girls, have a ton of work to get done, laundry then packing, Katie needs her hair done, Kirk needs to go shoe shopping, groceries shopping for the part of the family staying behind; before I know it we'll be leaving for the airport!

The 10 day forecast is out for the WDW portion of the trip and looks lovely to me. I'll need to bring an extra light jacket, and I'm no longer worried about the long sleeves on a couple of shirts I was packing. I can't wait! I need this trip so badly, for so many reasons. I've got a crazy amount of photography an research I need to cram into a teeny tiny amount of time. But - when my office for the week is Walt Disney World, there's no complaining allowed!

P.S.  If any of the regular suspects want to meet up - I'll be at Top of the World for the Fireworks on Friday night!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

15 Days Til Disney Countdown Calendar

15 Day Disney Countdown
Time is getting short and we're almost on our way to Walt Disney World!  I found this cute preschool countdown list from Disney, but below is a little more what my personal routine will look like. With a great pre-travel checklist and a little organization you can check off those last minute tasks a few at a time with no sweat at all.

10-14 Days Out: Confirm Plans, See Your Doctor

Confirm all of your travel reservations are in place and nothing has changed.  Take this time to go over your Advance Dining Reservations and be sure that they still match up with your travel plans and party. Add any celebrations or notate any dietary restrictions as needed.  If you have any health conditions that make travel difficult be sure you get in to your doctor and discuss your travel needs. 

7-10 Days Out: Documents, Shipping & Cell Phone

Be sure that you have made copies of all important documents for your trip.  You'll need to have your confirmation numbers, copies of medical cards, identification, and insurance.  Now is also the time to ship any packages you want to send ahead to your destination.  Be sure that your name and arrival dates are clearly marked.  If you'll be cruising or leaving the country, now is the time to make sure that you understand your international cell phone service,  call your provider for details.

5-7 Days Out: Check Medications, Pick Up Last Minute Necessities

Just because you're headed out on vacation doesn't mean that you shouldn't take care of yourself.  Be sure you have a ready supply of any prescription medications that you take.  Since 2010 (when we all got sick in Disney) I also make sure that I have over-the-counter staples packed too.  Tylenol, Advil, and some Cold medicines are usually available at your resort hotel, however the packages only have one or two doses and the price is much higher than if you just brought it along.  If you're prepared the touring doesn't have to stop.

3-5 Days Out: Get It In The Suitcase

I'm usually packed for myself sooner than this (I start gathering my own things up about 30 days out) but 3-5 days before we leave is when I remind the rest of the family that they need to have their clothing approved, washed and in the bags ready to travel.  The last thing that we pack up are toiletries and the electronics.

2-3 Days Out: Take Care Of The Homefront

We never leave the house empty (seriously I can count on one hand times no one has been home in the past 6 years) so Erik and the dogs will hold down the fort during this trip.  I like to leave whoever is staying home with a full fridge and no bills to worry about.  If you do leave your home vacant while traveling this is a good time to have your mail stopped and touch base with whoever is picking up your paper and packages, or taking care of the lawn.

1-2 Days Out: Relax & Refresh

Even though it's fun, travel can be exhausting.  Take a couple of days before you leave to recharge your batteries.  I like to get my hair cut or have a manicure to help me relax after the crazy pre-vacation days. Stay home at night, order in dinner, now is the perfect time to sneak those Disney movies into your busy schedule.



Thursday, January 15, 2015

Indulging My Disney Side With Planning

It's just 5 more weeks until some of my family and I will be headed off for another fantastic Disney Destination. Sadly, everyone is not coming along, and not everyone gets to be there for the entire length of time.  When you have a large, older family it can be really difficult to get everyone's schedule to match up for any sort of trip.  It's also really hard to leave people behind holding down the fort, but at the same time there's always a peace of mind that things won't go too haywire while I'm gone.

I've been working on getting all the details together and finishing up our overall spreadsheet.  ~ You can take a peek at it below. ~  The packing lists, budget, and work research lists are all about done too.  We've made FastPass+ reservations for attractions and I think I hate doing that already.  I've never been a big FastPass user, and don't often have a pre-set touring plan in the Parks.  Having to schedule them like this is awkward for me, I've never worried about how much time I need to do any specific thing before. 

I have, however, been checking the Be Our Guest Lunch website religiously hoping to be able to snag a lunch reservation there.  I really, really want to eat there and because we missed the 180 day reservation point I wasn't able to schedule dinner.  Right now we're scheduled for lunch at Liberty Tree Tavern, but if I can get Be Our Guest that will certainly change.  Everyone keeps telling me that the 27 day mark is when BOG should open up.  That's on 1/23 for us, fingers crossed and I'll let you all know if we get in.

Friday, January 9, 2015

The Legacy Collection: The Little Mermaid from Walt Disney Records

I received the Little Mermaid Legacy Collection CD as a member of the Entertainment New Media Network. No further compensation was received and all opinions are my own. This post may also contain affiliate links.

As I've mentioned before, Tori is a GIANT Disney music fan, and since we're heading off for a Disney Cruise Vacation soon, I couldn't think of a better way to get "in the mood" than to listen to some music from my favorite mermaid and her friends. 

To celebrate the 25th Anniversary of Disney classic movie The Little Mermaid, Walt Disney Records' launched a tribute to the memorable film.  The Legacy Collection: The Little Mermaid is two discs of festive music from Under the Sea paying tribute to the songs and score of Alan Menken and lyricist Howard Ashman. 

Disk 1 features the songs and score directly from the film and Disc 2 features work tapes and song demos performed by Menken and Ashman.  Included with the CDs is a 20-page hard bound booklet with stunning artwork and liner notes about each and every song.

My girls have listen to the soundtrack non-stop since the collection arrived at out house, but I'm fond of Disc 2 because it gives the listener that  peek behind the curtain to the origins of the music and the process of putting together some of the most beloved Disney songs of the modern generation. 

Disney Little Mermaid CD

Walt Disney Records The Legacy Collection The Little Mermaid 2-disc set is now available at http://smarturl.it/lclma1 and at Disney Music Emporium: disneymusicemporium.com.

For more information on Disney Music Emporium, please visit, DisneyMusicEmporium.com become a fan at Facebook.com/disneymusicemporium or follow them at Twitter.com/DisneyMusicEmp.

Oh hey!  You Can Win a Little Mermaid Legacy Collection CD!

Simply leave a comment below and one lucky winner will be chosen at random to get a Little Mermaid Legacy Collection CD all their own! 

Enter Before Midnight January 15th, 2015

Please note, if you have already won this prize on a giveaway sponsored by Entertainment New Media Network another blog, you will not be eligible to win twice. If it comes to this blogger’s attention that the winner of this giveaway has won on an additional blog for this same prize, this blog reserves the right to choose another winner.

Disclosure: I received the Little Mermaid Legacy Collection CD as a member of the Entertainment New Media Network. No further compensation was received and all opinions are my own. This post may also contain affiliate links. Giveaway prize provided by Disney Music via Entertainment New Media.