So it's decided we stink at blogging

We've been done with our trip for how long and I'm just now blogging on here? Oh, that's right A WEEK! Oh well. We had a great time and we decided we're never doing it again. Disney again, yes. Road trip again, yes. Just not a road trip to Disney World.

Anywho I left you on our first day of Disney. We went to the Magic Kingdom as is tradition with me. Honestly I don't think Erin really cared where we were going, but for me it's not a Disney trip - a true disney trip - until I walk down Main Street. It's not even seeing the castle. To me Main Street USA defines the Disney Parks. It's where I feel Walt walking. It's not me being New Age-y or anything, I just feel the Disney connection from there.

We got the park and immediately felt the Christmas spirit. The Magic Kingdom was decked out with Holiday cheer. Pointsettas lead the way to the ticket gates, they surrounded the Train Station, and then all the way down main street there were wreaths lining the sky and the lights.


I promise an update SOON!

But for now I'm off to shower... so here's the link to the SECOND photo album. It will be updated with even more in just a little while... *whew*



On The Road and Disney!

So I'm sitting in our room at Disney's Coronado Springs Resort trying to speed through this update so that I can go enjoy the BEAUTIFUL morning while Erin gets her pedicure at the spa. So it'll be a breeze through and hopefully I can flesh it out for the blog later.

The first day's drive as long but we did it. I did quite a bit of Driving in Oregon... until we hit Portland. Erin had forgotten to tell me where to turn and I ended up on one of the bridges that are HUGE and HIGH! I FREAKED OUT. We obviously survived but that was horrible. I also drove over the Shasta bridge, which was not fun either, but I did it. I conquered my fear and I will never do that again.

We made it to Bakers Field a little before 11pm and were so thankful it was a Hilton. Our Seattle hotel was just a bed and a shower, but the Hilton was Heaven after all of those hours (something like 17 hours) driving. The beds were wonderful. The room even had a microwave. It was fab. We almost wanted to stay there and forget the rest of the trip, but teh thought of Disney (and adventure) called by morning and we were out and on the road again headed for Amarillo.

The trip to Texas was uneventful but even longer than the first days drive because the GPS decided to go with the shortest DISTANCE and not shortest time. So we ended up on a few "back roads" through Arizona before hitting I-40 again. But it was all good. Arizona is brown. So it New Mexico. I did a fair amount of driving, but really Erin is the champ. Girl just GOES.

Amarillo to Baton Rouge almost did us in. We had planned a two hour stop in Fort Worth to meet up with friends and ended up staying for over five hours. Don't get us wrong we are NOT complaining. We haven't seen them in FOREVER and it was great catching up. We started off at teh Chappells house and we got to meet their two little ones who are possibly the cutest siblings EVER. Jack and Zoe were so entertaining. We also met Casey's friend Kristen while we were there. She was very shocked that we were doing the road trip ha ha!

Then we made our way to the Nichols' home. Got to spend a great amount of time with Ms Mary, Joel, Jessica and Pastor Dean. Definitely needed that visit. We stayed so long that Ms Mary and Jessica took us to dinner. HUGE THANKYOU to them for that because we were sooooo tired of the food we had been eating while in the car. We said our goodbyes ( including Ms Mary going all mom on us about calling if we get into trouble and pulling over and sleeping if we got tired. YES MA'AM!) and then it was off to Baton Rouge. We got into the hotel at 1:30am. And I had a melt down. I ended up losing my debit card (Erin, the hero, found it before we headed to Disney) and I smashed my right foot and so now I have no skin on my ankle a HUGE BRUISE and it's swollen! Not fun!

The drive to Disney was the shortest of them all but still came in at just under 10 hours. We FREAKED when we hit Disney property. So much so that when we stopped to take photos of the sign, Erin started screaming DISNEY BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! so then I joined in! We drove into the Coronado Springs, the guard at the front welcomed us home and chatted with us a bit (We love you, Gary!) and then we checked in. Now, you may remember we were worried Erin would be sleeping on the floor because we could only get a King sized bed room, but at check in I asked and got what I wished for. TWO BEDS! We are in Cabanas again. Main floor, water view, and it's a corner room which means we are quiet. We're right across from the laundry too which will be fab when I do my laundry later this week.

We ate at the Maya Grill and really it's just been perfect so far. I promise to write more. But, really, if you want to keep up with us TWITTER is the best way - http://www.twitter.com/tonichelleak as that's the best way I can keep updating without having to pay internet fees. Disney ain't cheap!

Well, I'm going to edit the photo album on facebook and then head out and enjoy the day! Love you all!


Day One: The Meet Up

Today started out early for me. I was up at four and had no way of falling back to sleep, there was just too much excitement! So I finally got up at six and putzed around for a half hour before getting ready. I felt soooo bad when I said goodbye to Yuka. No clue as to why. I actually cried when I left her. How horrible am I?

The baggage check was easy, they didn't even weigh my bag! haha! then it was a breeze through TSA and off to my gate to wait to board. I was hungry so I bravely decided to get a single hashbrown from McDonalds and a sprite. Ate that and then took the dremamine as it said to take it a half hour to an hour before the 'event'.
I was worried about the flight because there were a high number of young children (like under two years, younger) and I feared it would be a noisy flight, but shockingly it was uneventful in every possible way. I got to my seat and found that our middle seat would be empty, that is always a nice bonus! The gentleman sittin on the aisle helped me with my bag even though I didn't need it and then spent the next three hours ignoring me.

We made fantastic time, bringing a three and a half hour flight down to three hours. Apparently we had a good tailwind ha ha! The dremamine worked once I was in the air - on the ground it made me sick to my stomach, which is ironic. But I was thankful for the tummy that wasn't doing backflips!

I felt so good, in fact, that I got one of their crappy pay for meals. I got the cheese and fruit platter. It had definitely been sitting out a while. The grapes were shrivelled and very close to rotting. The Cheese was good, and the apple slices were firm. So it wasn't a total loss, but it didn't come close to filling me up. But, maybe that's a good thing.

Now I'm just waiting for Erin to get here with her mom. They're in between Spokane and Seattle right now. I'm watching an SVU marathon on TV right now but I think I'm going to log off and try to sleep to pass some time.

Might blog more tomorrow, but it's going to be a long drive so who knows. Will take pictures, I promise.


How best to follow us on the road?

I cannot be sure that we will always have time/energy/internet to blog while on the road or at Disney (Disney internet is expensive), but we will both have our phones and will be able to update facebook and twitter.

Yeah, I'm a dork as mainly you can bet it will be ME who is doing the updating. This, of course, will rely heavily on if ACS does what it says it will for my phone coverage. Considering my woes with them lately, I am not that optimistic.

But I will link you to the info anyway, in case it does work out.

Facebook photo album (at least to start, more will surely follow!) - http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=296064&id=733500663&l=3f32a26932
Toni's Twitter Account - http://www.twitter.com/tonichelleak

More later, gotta go get my hair done.



I can't find a video of disney clips set to the song, so we'll have to go with a music video by the artists!



Single Digits, Baby!

We have officially hit the "get excited" mark as we are down to NINE DAYS before our whirlwind adventure begins! Erin says she's already started packing, which I guess is a good thing because she is now sick as a dog. And top it off she has to work! Poor girl!

Cannot wait to blog from the road!


19 Days and Counting!

We've hit the teens! It's getting so close I can taste it, kinda, sorta, not really. Can't taste much of anything now that I have a massive head cold. I've been scrapbooking this month to pass the time, and reliving our last trip and getting excited for the next.

Erin informed me this weekend that our schedule is outdated. That I need to update it, so I will do that now before logging off of the computer to scrap some more.

Ultimate Magical Road Trip
November 7 - 24, 2010

November 07: Seattle, WA
November 08: Bakersfield, CA
November 09: Amarillo, TX
November 10: Baton Rouge, LA (with a short stop in Dallas-Fort Worth area)
November 11: Coronado Springs Resort (AKA WALT DISNEY WORLD)
November 12: Magic Kingdom
November 13: EPCOT
November 14: Disney-Hollywood Studios & Pirates Cove Mini Golf
November 15: Animal Kingdom & Disney-Hollywood Studios (Extra Magic Hours)
November 16: Magic Kingdom (Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party)
November 17: Whatever day - Mini Golf, Downtown Disney, etc.
November 18: Animal Kingdom & The Hoop-Dee-Do Revue
November 19: EPCOT
November 20: Magic Kingdom
November 21: New Orleans, LA
November 22: San Antonio, TX
November 23: Albequerque, NM
November 24: Salt Lake City, UT (Toni flies out to go home, arrives on the 25 in Anchorage, AK)

Happy now, Erin?



Okay, technically it's not a month until tomorrow, but by this time next month I will be doing the last minute packing scramble so it counts as ONE MONTH to our most awesome road trip adventure yet!!!!!!!!!!!!! FREAKING EXCITED!


Now the Countdown will really start...

On Sept. 27 we will hit the 45 day mark. That's the time that Disney designates that packages must be paid in full - well, we were paid in full earlier this summer when the discounts came out in abundance and we ended up with free dining. So we've just been sitting here waiting and hoping. Still no two beds in our room, we're still in teh king room. However if we hit 45 days and there's not one to be had we can wait and ask about 5 days out when they do the room assignments and see if we can possibly slip in, but still pay the king price. I don't care if we don't get refunded, that's not why we want the standard room. We just want our own bed lol

All of our dining plans have been made, hotels on the way down and back are set. Tours in New Orleans and San Antonio are planned. All that's left, really, is for me to buy a plane ticket to Seattle. Yes, that's right, still haven't done that one yet, but hopefully soon. PFD is being announced tomorrow so hopefully AlaskaAir will give a sweet deal for trips to Seattle. One can hope anyway, if not it's going to be over two hundred dollars for a one way ticket, which I guess is not that bad, but then they charge for baggage and all these others stupid hidden fees and it just frustrates me.

Oh well, the trip is just around the corner. Final week of work for me started today (yay!) so I am definitely ready for VACATION!


Just a Video

We hit double digits for our trip (starting November 7 when I fly down to Seattle and Erin drives over from Montana) yesterday. In 102 days we will be driving into Walt Disney World properties! Check in at CSR and then head over to AKL for dinner at Boma! YUM! Cannot wait!


Free Dining? Sign me up!

News broke this morning that Disney had extended their Free Dining Promotion for dates through December. Our trip started one day before the promotional dates, but a quick-ish call to Disney Travel had us with a one day room only ressie for the 11th and then the rest of our trip we were the same only FREE DINING.

This also means we are PAID IN FULL! Three months ahead of schedule! Insanity!

It's getting so close I can smell it, can't wait to take a bite!


Countdown continues...

We're just under five months on our trip, actually at this point in time five months from now we will be pulling into our hotel in Bakersfield, CA.

Nothing really new to report. Our ADRs are all made, got everything we wanted (of course), and now we're just impaitently waiting for November.


We're all booked...

Woke up at 1:45 am Alaska time to be online at 2am to get first dibs on ADRs when the window opened... and I have success. Check them out:

November 11 (arrival): Boma @ 8:30pm
November 12: Chef Mickey's @ 7:45pm
November 13: No ADR
November 14: 50's Prime Time Cafe @ 12:55pm
November 15: Tusker House @ 8:30am (was hoping for earlier, but le sigh)
November 16: 1900 Park Fare @ 4:45 (we are doing the Christmas Party this night)
November 17: California Grill @ 7:20pm (MK FIREWORKS @ 8!!!)
November 18: Hoop Dee Doo Review @ 9:30pm
November 19: Akerhaus @ 7:00pm
November 20: No ADR

I am so excited!


We're going!

Bought tickets to Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party last night for November 16!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party

So I've been bemoaning the fact that I can't truly plan our trip out (WDW wise anyway) until we know the dates for Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party - well, I got what I whined for. Dates and tickets will be released on thursday according to a post on Passboardboards.com!!! Can't wait!


Overdue for an Update!

Wow, we've been extremely bad about updating our journal. Not sure what that is about, other than we're both extremely busy working to pay for our obsessive habit of travelling. I can't speak for Erin, but I know that the only thing that keeps me in my job is the fact that I have trips that need to be paid for. I think Erin enjoys her job, though, so lucky for her.

Anyway, we have everything booked except my airfare. Still trying to find the best deal, though, and it's going to be expensive as we are starting in Seattle for the road trip and ending in Salt Lake City. It's a long story as to why - mainly I was not paying attention when I was planning out our days on the road, and so Erin's mom came to the rescue and told us to forget Seattle on our return trip and head for Utah. Thanks Patty! You are a life saver!

We have booked all of our hotel rooms for the road trip both going down to Disney and coming back. And, of course, we have the Disney trip booked and are paying it off each month. If Erin would send her check on time, it'd help a great deal, but can't complain too much I suppose as it's getting done little by little. We have a little over six months to go, and November cannot come soon enough.

Anyway. Here are our Travel Plans.

Day One: Seattle, WA
Toni flies in from Anchorage. 9:50am
Erin drives in from Deer Lodge. 9-10pm
Hotel: America's Best Value

Day Two: Bakersfield, CA
Leave Seattle by 5:30am.
Get into Bakersfield 10pm.
Hotel: Hilton Garden Inn

Day Three: Amarillo, TX
Leave Bakersfield by 6:30am
Get into Amarillo by 9:30pm
Hotel: Travel Lodge Amarillo West

Day Four: Baton Rouge, LA
Leave Amarillo by 6am
Get into Dallas Fort Worth by Noon (meeting up with Shorty and the Nichols! CAN'T WAIT!)
Leave DFW by 4pm
Get into Baton Rouge by 11pm
Hotel: Crestwood Suites

Day Five: DISNEY, BABY!!!
Leave Baton Rouge by 9:00am
Get into Lake Buena Vista by 7pm
Hotel: Coronado Springs Resort!

Then, on the way back....

Day One: New Orleans, LA
Leave Disney :( by 9:00am
Get into New Orleans by 7pm
Hotel: Prince Conti Hotel (French Quarter, Baby!)

Day Two: San Antonio, TX
Leave New Orleans by 10am
Get into San Antonio by 5:30pm
Hotel: Travel Lodge Amarillo/Riverwalk (!!!)

Day Three: Albuquerque, NM
Leave San Antonio by 9:00am
Get into Albuquerque by 8pm
Hotel: Days Inn - Midtown

Day Four: Salt Lake City
Leave Albuquerque by 6pm
Get into Salt Lake City by 4pm
Toni flies away :(

that's all the updating I can do for now!


Snow Days...

Is it November yet? It seems silly for me to be wishing for Alaska winter when it isn't even over yet - and it IS Iditarod month so I can't complain to badly - but seeing as how my truck is firmly stuck in a foot of snow in my driveway, I'm ready for some Florida fun!

Right now it's just a wait to plan stage. We have the ADRs picked out, but can't reserve anyhing until May. May is also when it's suggested that tickets for Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party will go out. Hopefully we'll get to snag a night for that!

Nothing really substantial to report, just wanted to update this thing so it didn't look abandoned.


Passporter is in hand

My copy of the 2010 Passporter came in the mail last week (finally)! I am so excited as it is so much easier to keep everything together and I can keep up with any changes. Though it is already a tad outdated with the planned changes in the parks, but that's just fine by me!

Still checking in everyday on the Walt Disney World website to see if more rooms with queen beds have become available, but no such luck. Bummer!

Nothing much is really going on with it, though. In a holding pattern until the calendar for November is up on their site so I can see the park hours. And we have until probably May before we find out when the Christmas Parties in the Magic Kingdom will be!

Just wanted to post something in here so it doesn't look dead. ha ha!


Happy New Year, I'm Sick.

So we're still planning our trip. Still drooling over the fantastic menus from the restaurants we would like to dine at. Still counting down. Not much has changed.

Erin has informed me that she will sleep on the floor if need be to keep our reservation at Coronado Springs. So King Bed or not we're staying there (We're still holding out hope for NOT, we need two beds, yo!).

Just waiting for time to book our ADRs (not till May! *sob*)

I'm sick today, again, so I stayed home... it's what keeps my mind off of feeling crappy.