spreadsheets and suitcases

organization + travel = family fun

Europalooza Trip Report Part 16: back to our rock in the middle of the ocean

After a long-planned and fun trip around North Carolina, England, France, Spain, and NYC, it was time to come home.  We’d been away for nearly 3 weeks, and being in our place sounded pretty good.  Obviously, I love traveling.  But there’s nothing like your own bed, a full kitchen, and 2 bathrooms.  WAIT- I’m getting ahead of myself!  All these luxuries were still over 14 hours away from our wake-up time this morning…   Read the rest of this entry »

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Europalooza Trip Report Part 1: Escape from Hawaii

You may have noticed that I changed the name of this trip for purposes of simplicity.  Easier to type Europalooza than Spain and France in 2018 or So Help Me, which is a name I still love because of the Monsters, Inc. reference.   Anyway, Europalooza it is, for the duration of this Trip Report.

Departure day dawned…sunny? cloudy? rainy?…actually I didn’t pay attention to the weather at all, haha.  It just dawned, and it meant that I was up early due to have a pesky all-day work training to attend.  The packing lists had been printed and posted a few days prior, with almost all of the packing already done.  Just a few housechores left to do: Read the rest of this entry »

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Disney World October 2015 Trip Report Part 11: Final Thoughts

Oh, boy.  This is it. IT.  There’s nothing else to do as far as post-trip activities than finish this last post.  Everything else is done:

  • unpack the suitcases
  • find places in the house/closet/fridge for new souvenirs
  • reconcile the budget/accounts with the trip receipts (My estimate was off by $8, guys.  $8!!!  I pegged it almost exactly.  This gave me an unreasonable amount of pride)
  • have everyone complete my “Post-Disney Trip” questionnaire, the last Trip Tradition.  Just 4 questions: what was your favorite part of the pre-trip preparations, name your 3 favorite rides/attractions from this trip, describe the funniest thing that happened on the trip haha I think we all know what that was: Pool-tastrophe 2015, and your opinion on the new things that you tried on this trip)
  • sort through the PhotoPass pictures, organize and name
  • sort through the personal pictures (from my iPod Touch that I used as my main camera, my phone, my husband’s iPod Touch/camera, his phone, my daughter’s phone, and her videocamera), organize and name
  • print said pictures
  • fill 2015 albums with said pictures, and stick an envelope in back of the photo albums with flat souvenirs like our MNSSHP bracelets, and the resort maps with our room locations circled on them
  • force the family to look at the pretty albums
  • suffer from Post-Disney depression.. sniffle.
  • do the Trip Report!

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Disney World October 2015 Trip Report Part 10: See ya real soon!

I woke up on Monday, October 12th, and realized that it was our last (half) day at Disney before we started the long journey home.  So bittersweet, because of course I didn’t want to leave my happy place, but I was also looking forward to the traveling ahead of us.

I savored the last early morning view of the Savanna from our room.  It’s really just beautiful.  I took an extra moment to appreciate it, because it’ll be a long time before we stay at Animal Kingdom Lodge again.  Now that all of my little family group has stayed there on their 1st trip to Disney, it’s time to branch out to other Deluxe resorts for future split stays and get more Resorts checked off my list.  Based on experiences on this trip, I’m leaning toward PO-FQ and the Grand Floridian for our next trip in 2021.  Of course, availability and price will guide the final decision. Read the rest of this entry »

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Disney World October 2015 Trip Report Part 7B: Afternoon with DD

When we last left off, I had just spent a challenging but fulfilling morning with DS.  It was now DD’s turn to get some “mami time,” and we started things off right at the Grand Floridian Resort where we had met up to do our Parent Switch.

My sister started this Trip Tradition with us.  The Garden View Tea Room does Afternoon Tea from 2-5p, with all those lace doily/tea cozy/sugar cube-y things you associate with high society and ladies who lunch.  Perfect for some mother-daughter time.  We checked in for our 2pm ADR, with plans to have some tea and snacks, then monorail over to the Magic Kingdom to catch the 3p Festival of Fantasy parade.  I had a particular parade viewing spot in mind, and the parade wouldn’t reach there until at least 3:15p, so we had a good amount of time.

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