178; That’s how many days we have until we are sleeping in a Disney Resort again. Excitement is starting to build. We made our Advanced Dining Reservations yesterday. The only one reservation that we didn’t get as wanted was at the California Grill; our time is different than we wanted, but we got the same evening and everything else we wanted, so we are happy. We are trying some new things this trip, we are going to the Mayan Grill at the Coronado Springs Resort, as well as the California Grill, and we are going to lunch at the Plaza Restaurant in the Magic Kingdom. We’re also going to use the Deluxe Dining Plan. We have used the Disney Dining Plan before, but looking at the idea of having the choice of sit-down meals instead of having to choose a sit-down or a quick serve meal, we thought we’d give it a try. (Of course I will be keeping track to see if it is really saving us money or not. I will let you know after our trip.)
Not only are we trying new things with the meal plan during this vacation, but we are planning to do some other things we have not done before. Normally when we go to Disney, we buy an annual pass (which we use for that trip and for the next year’s trip) and we seem to end up in the parks almost every day we are there. This year we are planning on only buying a 5 or 6 day Magic Your Way ticket for our 9 day trip. We have decided that for a few of the days there, we will spend them outside the parks. One of them we are actually going to drive south a few hours to Port St. Lucie to visit my sister and brother-in-law for the day. Another one of those out of park days, we are planning on visiting Celebration, Disney’s planned community a few miles away from Walt Disney World. Of course during these out of park days, we will also be visiting some of the great Unknown Magics within Walt Disney World, such as Winter Summerland and The Margarita Bar in Downtown Disney. We’ll also be enjoying time by the pool and Hotel Hopping I’m sure. (I wrote about Hotel Hopping in an article before called Worth the Hop).
While we were making plans this past week, we had a pleasant surprise, but not one that really surprised my wife and me that much. Let me explain, while we were discussing our trip one morning, I mentioned that maybe John (our 16 year old) would like to have a friend come with us. That way he could enjoy the trip with someone his own age and they could do their thing. We approached John with the idea and he seemed okay with it and said he’d think about it. A few days later, he said that he thought just us going down would be better, than us and a friend. It surprised us at first; I mean how many 16 year olds would pass up a trip with their friend to Disney World, to just go with their parents? But the more we thought about it, as my wife said, we have our things we do and taking a friend would be different for him and he wouldn’t be able to do all of those things (besides, he is going down with that friend next year for their senior class trip). So, it was neat that the Disney Magic is still strong in my son and that he wants to do things with us, when we are there.
As our days are dwindling closer, and our plans are getting more settled, we are getting more excited about going. Of course knowing what Magic awaits us is helping, but also knowing that there will be new adventures and new attractions and even new queues awaiting us are making the planning steps this year very exciting. Over the next few months, we’ll be looking into The Keys to the Kingdom Tour and some other things we have not experienced in Disney World yet. It is pretty amazing I know that we haven’t experienced some things in Disney, even though we have been there more than a dozen times. As I tell people, there is always something new to be found in Walt Disney World, but that is the Magic of Disney, it is always changing and even the things you have experienced before can provide you with a new Magical Experience, if you let it.