Nine Nights: Filling 2019 with Disney Adventures around the World *Updated 4/15

Discussion in 'Pre-Trip Reports and Plans' started by amazingact21, Feb 25, 2019.

  1. Lesley Wake

    Lesley Wake May the force be with you!

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    So I spent 6 yrs up in Montreal (living downtown, so no big stores), and then a year in England, again no big stores in the city. When I moved back to the US, I ended up in Columbia, Maryland, which literally has every single big box store! It was amazing! I was in retail heaven, because I could get to any of those stores (and multiple Targets) within 10 minutes!

    And I still try to limit my Target trips because $$$
     
  2. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

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    I used to make Alex and my mom go to a park right after we checked in to our resort but realized over the years that I was exhausting them from the start. Since I never am the one driving, I forgot that 6 hours of interstate traveling can be tiring. Now I always try to make our arrival day more relaxed.



    YES!!! Everything you said completely describes my sentiments to living overseas. And I think I'm going to be right there with you when we leave Germany in terms of the wine. We live along the Mosel and there's so many amazing local wineries that I've become quite attached to. It's going to be difficult to not pop into a local shop for some Riesling when I need a bottle.
    The lack of A/C is rough, but I think I handle it better than some. My husband was pretty cranky during the whole month of July when we had a brutal heatwave.
     
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  4. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

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    How funny! I love listening to the stories the kids come up with when it's a lazy weekend morning.

    That fact could help me sway the kids in my favor. Explaining that if I run out that evening and handle the tickets, then we won't have to wait in an extra line the following morning might be just the thing they need to hear. Anything that gets my son into Disney faster is always a sure fire winner...



    There's so many varieties of everything in the department stores! I never really thought it was a unique thing until I started shopping in Europe. 99% of the time, I love running into Aldi because I get what I need and don't need to compare it to eight different brands, but when I'm in the states I like to browse the selections.
    (My friend Ashley loves the caramel trail mix from Target and that's always my payment to her for helping watch our dog while we're gone.)




    Me too! I think it will all depend on how my kids acted while at her house. Hopefully, they're not too rambunctious!
     
  5. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

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    Haha, I told myself that I didn't need to go into a long explanation about Target, that I've talked about it enough in the past but I can't help it! Not counting family and friends, it's probably the one thing I really miss over here.



    Absolutely! I could spend an entire morning perusing all the aisles whenever I go home for a visit. The variety is astounding.




    I'm not a big shopper, so I don't know why I miss Target so much. I think it's just the sheer convenience of it. Some days, I just want to be able to run in to one store and buy broccoli and a sweatshirt and a birthday card all in one go! We have a "mall" of sorts about an hour from us that has shops that would fit that need, but it's not right down the road like most Targets are...

    I completely understand the having to limit Target trips, though. I put spare money aside starting a few months before a trip back to the states because I know I'll spend too much. (Alex just resigns himself to this fact and asks not to see the receipt.)
     
  6. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

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    Third Trip TBD:


    I haven’t gotten into the other Disney trips I had planned for 2019, but it’s looking like one of them might be scrapped before it even got any footing.


    Over Christmas break, Alex suggested I try to go for the Castle to Chateau medal offered through the Disneyland Paris race weekend.
    medal.jpg


    It sounded like a really cool challenge, and we joked about me doing it last year. He offered to watch the kids so I could fly back to the states solo and participate in the Wine and Dine Half Marathon next November.
    wine and dine.jpg

    I broached the subject with my mom and asked if she would be willing to tag along. We could split a room, share meals, and relax by the pool together. She was up for the adventure and together we booked 6 nights at Port Orleans….(I can’t remember which resort, I think French Quarter! It’s the one with the princess royal rooms.)


    Running two half marathons within 6 weeks of each other seemed like a new and exciting challenge and a good way to shake up the monotony of last year’s training. I was all for it.


    Then the move madness started. Lately, I have been swamped with getting everything in order to leave Germany, and I know it’s ten times worse for Alex right now. We’re keeping our heads afloat, but it’s taking a lot of work and a massive amount of organization. You should see our phone calendars; it’s just a stream of deadlines and appointments and to-do lists.


    And from experience, I know that the first 6 weeks after we get to England will be equally daunting. Finding a house, setting up services, getting the kids registered in school, registering our cars and pet passports, etc. This spring and summer are passing in a whirlwind, and I really want to make sure I don’t pile too much on my plate.


    If that wasn’t enough to make me step back and pause, the announcement of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge opening before race weekend threw a big monkey wrench into the mix. I’m ambivalent to Star Wars, I can take it or leave it. But with the new land opening, I worry that some people will sign up for the race as a tie in to seeing Star Wars.

    Then there’s the fact that it’s an anniversary run, which always makes the event more popular.

    And it’s three days after Halloween.

    IMG_8720.JPG

    I am not going to miss the kids celebrating Halloween, so my plan was to fly out Friday morning and arrive late Friday night. Which meant I would have to wake up on Saturday and go to the Expo to pick up my bib, and I would only be able to run the Half Marathon and nothing else.


    If all of that wasn’t enough, my mom told me she might have to pull out of the trip. She’s here in Germany for a month to help with my brother’s new baby (my brother is also in the military and is stationed about an hour away from us) and then she’s going with us in June. She has shared her worries that a third trip might be too much for her.

    And while I have family and friends in Orlando and have no issue touring the parks solo, I had gone into this trip with the mindset of it being a mother/daughter vacation. I’d feel kind of letdown if it wasn’t.



    Registration for the race opened to the public on the 19th, and I just couldn’t bring myself to book a spot.

    There’s a part of me that really does want to do the challenge. The races aren’t what are holding me back, it’s life’s circumstances. A big part of me feels like this is not the right time to do something like this.

    If I were to go to the Wine and Dine race weekend, I would want to participate in all three races. I’d also want to frontload the trip in order to be able to do Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and Halloween Horror Nights.

    And I want to take the trip with my mom and do a couple special outings, such as a day at Discovery Cove and brunch at California Grill.
    stock-photo-01.jpg
    (google pic)


    There’s no telling how fast the half marathon is going to sell out, it could be today or it could be in two months. But I think for the time being, I’m putting this trip on pause and letting the fates decide.

    If the move goes well and everything falls into place faster than I anticipated and registration is still open, perhaps I’ll change my mind and go. For now, though, Wine and Dine is on the back burner and probably going to be taken off completely. With the hope, of course, that I can revisit these plans in a few years.

    Honestly, Evie will start kindergarten in two years, and that would probably the best time to try and attempt a three-race challenge. I’d certainly have a little more time to train for the races.

    So, we shall see….
     
  7. rdkeim

    rdkeim DIS Veteran

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    I always have a hard time changing plans once things are set - even if it hasn't moved past the planning stages. But, it sounds like a good decision to put it on hold. Something to look forward to! I saw in one of your posts you live near the Moselle River? My DH and I took a river cruise last Fall down the Rhine and Moselle. I loved the Moselle! I really enjoyed the scenery and all the quaint looking little villages. The only stop we had was Cochem but we were able to spend part of the day there. I really enjoyed it and would love to go back!
     
  8. evre13

    evre13 Hi, I'm new here.

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    I like your day 1 plans -- it's a nice way to get situated and to make sure everyone starts the trip in a good mood! My first day in a few weeks, I'm solo - my plan is to go for a run around WL, eat some snacks, sit by the pool, and just veg out before my friends come.

    I get this. I live in DC, and there's only one Target in the city, so it's always super crowded and I don't let myself go very often. One is about to open across the street from my BF's apartment though, and I fear that could be dangerous.

    This would be so fun! I'm about to run the Star Wars half, and I am so tempted to sign up for Wine and Dine (it would be silly, I know).

    I didn't even think about the logistics of moving and getting settled - especially in a new country. While this isn't the most fun decision, it's probably the right one. A great thing about remaining in Europe is that you'll probably get the opportunity to run at Disneyland Paris again, and then you can choose from all of the US-based races in the future.
     
  9. missangelalexis

    missangelalexis DIS Veteran

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    I'm sorry you might have to put this trip on the back burner. You never know, it may work out. But if it doesn't, it just gives you a reason to plan it the way you want in the future!!
     
  10. Lesley Wake

    Lesley Wake May the force be with you!

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    Yeah it seems like maybe this year is not the best time to do it. You’d also be missing Guy Fawkes Day in England which was super fun the year I was there!

    Maybe next year you could try it but with a different WDW race so it’s easier around the kids schedules? Or if you do Wine and Dine, bring the whole family and have a mini (Minnie?) Halloween trip?
     
  11. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

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    Oh, that's wonderful to hear! I love Cochem:
    DSC09304.JPG

    It's where I go to buy my favorite wine. It also has the best spaghetti ice cream and the best Italian restaurant. Cochem is Alex's and my's go-to date night city. I'm really glad you got to stop there for a day and explore it. Really, all the surrounding villages hold the charm that Cochem has, so I hope you get to go back one day and experience more of it. :goodvibes



    Sounds like good arrival day plans. Honestly, getting to enjoy some solo time before the rest of your party arrives sounds lovely.



    Good luck on your upcoming race! My friend (the folks in my DLP report) are running it, as well, and I'm already jealous of the awesome medals. Did you do the virtual half, too, in order to get the Kessel medal?
    And wanting to sign up for Wine and Dine isn't crazy at all? If you're like me, you'll swear off another race for about...oh, one day. Then you'll want to do it another one ASAP.



    The last two months at your old home and the first two months at your new one are the craziest. But once you're settled and everything is situated things start falling into place and you forget about the madness until it's time to do it again. :rotfl:
     
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  12. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

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    Alex still thinks I should go, but I'm not going to make any firm decisions until I talk it over with my mom and see what she thinks.



    Oh, YES! I forgot about that! It's silly how excited I am to get to England and start exploring/celebrating their traditions.

    Alex doesn't think he'll want to make the trip back to the states again until it's time to move back, but I bet if I center a trip around a race he's interested in I could get him to go. Right now, though, we are hoping for a great summer 2021 cruise itinerary to be released. We loved the Norwegian Fjords one they have for 2020 but it overlaps the kids' school start date.
     
  13. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

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    When DH and I went in July last year I was able to get FOP on 60+1! I think for off times and for two people your odds should be pretty good! My only suggestion would be to be using the app and desktop because I always seem to find way more availability on the app and I have no idea why!

    That stinks about your Wine and Dine trip, but it sounds like thats probably the most logical choice! I'm sure it isn't cheap for you to come back so to do it for a trip that isn't exactly what you want probably wouldn't be worth it!
     
  14. Lesley Wake

    Lesley Wake May the force be with you!

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    Ooh, you will need to keep me updated! I’ve been thinking about one of the European cruises in 2021! It would be so cool if we ended up on the same one!
     
  15. TheOneWithTheTriplets

    TheOneWithTheTriplets DIS Veteran

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    It sounds like postponing is probably the right choice. If you do get to do the trip, you'd only be doing a small portion of what you actually want. Better to save it for a time when you can do it the right way, I think.
     
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  16. Steppesister

    Steppesister DIS Veteran

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    I think you're right, when Evie starts school might be a good time to try that challenge. But, if it all works out this year, sounds like you have a plan in place. Packed, but a plan.

    2 of the BEST options! Love both of those for sure!
     
  17. cindianne320

    cindianne320 DIS Veteran

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    Bummer about the fall trip being postponed, but still lots of fun to look forward to!
     
  18. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

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    That's music to my ears! This is the only Fastpass selection I'm worried about getting, and that's only because I would much rather not wait hours on end for the attraction. I'll definitely have to use all my devices to help! My mom is actually here visiting, so I'll make her check on her phone, too!


    That would be awesome! When the itineraries are released we will have to compare interests.



    I talked about it with my mom yesterday, and we both agree we would rather wait a year or two and take a bigger trip together.



    The CA Grill brunch popped onto my radar after reading your trip report recap!



    Like dinner with DIS friends!:goodvibes
     
  19. amazingact21

    amazingact21 Upendi

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    Day 2 Plans:


    Our first day in the parks will be a special occasion. A little bit of wiggling and some smart planning allowed me to be at Disney with my mom on her birthday. This won’t be the first time she celebrated her big day at Disney (she went a few years ago with friends) but this will be MY first time going with her, and I’m really excited.

    My mom and I are super close, and living so far away we miss each other a lot and try to video chat a few times a week.

    02.jpg

    Planning a whole day around her favorite Disney things brought me a lot of joy, and I hope she likes what I’ve come up with.



    Everyone in the group are early risers, so I would be shocked if we weren’t up and waiting at the front of the park well before opening.

    Guess I should mention the park…:sad2::laughing:


    03.jpg

    Epcot!!

    My mom’s favorite park. (Also, Alex’s.)


    The hope is to get myself and my mom Fastpasses for Soarin’ around 9:15.

    04.jpg



    This attraction makes Alex a little motion sick, so he usually skips it. So while we are riding this, Alex can take the kids on:

    07.jpg

    Figment.



    Then, once we are finished, Alex and Landon can use Fastpasses for Test Track.

    05.JPG

    My mom and I wouldn’t mind riding Test Track, but with the tiering system we have to pick and choose what’s our favorite. And Soarin’ is my mom’s favorite attraction in all of Walt Disney World; obviously that wins every time.


    While the boys are off designing cars, the three girls will go use FPs for:

    06.jpg

    Where we can hang out and watch the fish until the boys are finished.


    None of us have ever done Turtle Talk with Crush before, and I think the kids are old enough now that they’d enjoy the show. In a perfect world, we will be able to knock that out this morning.


    Lunch on this day will be simple. Probably something from Sunshine Seasons.


    Then, we will head back to Shades for some pool time. The kids love the splash area at the resort, and I’ve already told Alex I am soaking up as many pool days as possible before I move back to rainy Europe. He can go shop around the stores, watch tv in the room, or resort hop around the monorails if he gets bored.



    In the late afternoon, we will all head back to Epcot and make our way slowly around the World Showcase.

    11.JPG


    If I can snag a 4th Fastpass for Frozen or meeting Mickey and friends that afternoon that would be perfect, but if I don’t we’ll just walk around and enjoy the views.


    For my mom’s birthday dinner, we are going to be dining at Via Napoli. This is both of our favorite Disney restaurants and a must do on every one of my vacations. I should probably feel bad that I have eaten here 6 times when there’s dozens of other Epcot restaurants I have never tried before.

    I try to tell myself to skip it, but then it’s time to make dining reservations and I can’t resist booking it!:rotfl:

    But doesn’t everyone have that one place at Disney? That one eatery they have to visit trip after trip? Please say you do, so I feel less guilty about my Via Napoli obsession.



    At dinner, Evie will probably end up with the kid’s pasta:

    08.JPG


    Landon will change his mind five times before ordering, and Alex will get the pepperoni pizza with extra cheese.

    My mom and I will split the best dish on the menu:

    09.JPG
    (The Quattro Formaggio pizza is what dreams are made of!)



    Then we will delight in our favorite Italian dessert:

    10.jpg


    Just looking at those photos makes me miss Via Napoli. I think what the restaurant has going for it, too, is that a lot of our best meals at Disney have been shared here. My mom and I went here on a girl’s trip, Alex and I dined here both before and after a deployment, I celebrated my birthday at the same place, and two summers ago my mom gave Landon her tiramisu and watched him go on an espresso-high.

    Many, many laughs have occurred over Via Napoli’s tables, and I really hope that tradition continues this trip. It would be the most wonderful way to round out my mom’s birthday.


    And because every single one of us will eat too much of the Italian cuisine, we’ll spend the rest of the evening waddling around the rest of the World Showcase, hoping to walk off some of the meal.


    I know it doesn’t sound like a ton of concrete plans, but my mom likes to visit Disney at a slower pace than Alex. I don’t want to rush us and burn out halfway through the trip, especially the kids.



    Day 2 Goals:

    - My mom ride Soarin’
    - Alex ride Test Track
    - Dinner at Via Napoli





    Up Next…Day 3 Plans
     
  20. missangelalexis

    missangelalexis DIS Veteran

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    Being with your mom in Disney on her birthday will be so wonderful! Your plans for the day sound so great! I don't blame you at all for needing to go to Via Napoli! Sounds like you have so many good memories tied to that place :lovestruc
     
  21. Cloe Colton

    Cloe Colton DIS Veteran

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    I think your plans sound great! I'm super close with my Mom too so I totally understand! I think its smart to not overplan the day, everything you have planned sounds great!

    Via Napoli is always our go to in EPCOT too lol I dont know what it is about it! DH usually wants something other than Via Napoli so thats usually when I try something new. But its hard to stray away! Especially when you know everyone will have a good meal! So I totally get it!
     

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