To Dream it, or to just Do it…. #DisneyVacations

Here’s a Flashback Friday article from a year BEFORE our big move to Florida! I love looking back, and I hope you do too! Enjoy! ~M

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Like a lot of Disney fans, I’m always looking out for the latest deals.  Granted, I can’t always afford said deals, but it’s fun to look.  Do you ever find yourself going to the Walt Disney World website, plugging in dates and numbers, just to see what the figures would be?  I do.  I’m not sure why though, sometimes dreaming is just torture, because it’s hard to gather up the funds to make those Disney dreams come true.  So, there comes a point when I have to ask myself, do I continue to “dream it” or do I just “do it?”  The answer isn’t easy.

For my family, we usually travel to Disney every other year.  I’m not really comfortable with flying, so we drive, and it takes roughly 18 hours from my driveway to the WDW Resort.  It’s really not “that” bad of a drive, and it saves money,  especially since airfare has gone up so much, and you have to pay for luggage and what not.  I always take an extra bag for souvenirs, so driving works, I don’t want to pay to ship my Disney goodies home!  So, that’s one way that I can cut costs.

Second on the list, would be searching, or waiting for Disney travel specials.  For our family, we have previously gone during the Free Dining promotions.  We had kept track of our meal receipts, and added up the costs at the end of the trip, and realized how much money Free Dining actually saved us.  If we weren’t able to go during a dining promotion, we would just eat smaller meals, and probably not go to any of the more expensive places to eat.  You do what you’ve gotta do, right?  I guess it all depends on how bad you want to go, or when the best time would be.  Timing is important too.  We tend to go during the “off” seasons due to less crowds, usually in the late Summer.  It’s hotter, but usually cheaper and there aren’t as many people.  So after deciding to drive, go during the off season, take advantage of Free Dining, etc… what’s left?  Money.

Now to come up with the money to go.  What to do….. what to do?  Do we use our rainy day funds?  Yard sale?  Sell stuff on Ebay?  I’ve probably done all of the above, but there’s a struggle.  My conscience gets the best of me, and I always second guess myself.  Do I really “need” to spend the money on a vacation?  Could that money be used towards something else?  Well, of course there are more “responsible” places to use that money towards~ bills, home improvements, just the everyday cost of living.  But what about building “memories” for your family?  What about giving yourself a much deserved break from reality?  It’s a hard one.

In the past couple of weeks, I have seen TMSM Members comment about this very subject, and to my surprise, a lot of people say the “memories” are worth spending money on.  There’s a big movement about the whole “you only live once” philosophy.  Some people feel that there will always be a debt to pay, or something to spend money on, so why not just take the leap and go?  I completely understand their point, I just wish I could do it.  We haven’t been to Disney in two years, and we’re way overdue.  I really want to go.  The kids really want to go.  So, do we go?  That’s the question, and it’s a hard one.  I can’t say for sure what we will do.  Life changes all the time, situations come and go, and some things can’t be planned out.   I’m on the fence between responsibility and going to the one place I love.  Everyone needs a break from the day to day grind every now and then.  Disney provides that break.  Reality doesn’t exist once our car drives onto the beautiful Disney property.  I love that feeling.   Breaks are good.  In the meantime during my indecision, I’ll continue to watch for specials, maybe have a yard sale, and keep that Disney dream alive.

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Michele
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Michele

Michele Atwood is the Owner/Editor of The Main Street Mouse and it’s subsidiaries and author of the books “Moving to Main Street U.S.A.” “How Many Sleeps Till Disney?” and “How Many Sleeps Till Disneyland?” Michele also contributes Disney news to the Joe Kelley Morning Show on 107.3 WDBO in Orlando. She and her family made the move from Michigan to the Orlando area to pursue their Disney dreams. Michele is a life long Disney fan, and has two sons who have followed suit, each going on their first Disney trip before their first birthday’s. Part of the goal Michele has for The Main Street Mouse is not only to keep members informed, but to create somewhat of a Disney Family by relating to others through personal experiences and opinions. Also, Michele is making it a priority to share stories of inspiration and hope to other Disney Fans in an effort to share the Magic and hopefully make a difference in the lives of others. ~ I enjoy writing personal perspective blogs, doing TMSM Meet Ups for our readers, and keeping the constant interaction going with others, sharing the Disney Magic to people when they can’t be at their Happy Place.

Michele has 5972 posts and counting. See all posts by Michele

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5 thoughts on “To Dream it, or to just Do it…. #DisneyVacations

  • April 13, 2014 at 8:05 am
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    My mom surprised me and my daughter in 2011 with a 4 day trip to Disney World. Something I had not even thought about since I myself had last been when I was 13. This year I decided in December I was going to go. This time it will just be me and my 11 year old pirate princess going and I have really pulled out alot of stops and don’t even want to think about how much money I am putting into this trip and special events I have planned for us, BUT I figure this may very well be the last year my girl really wants to spend time with her mom before moving onto that teenage era where they are all about friends. Next time I will drive down and spend more time seeing the other sites in Orlando..then maybe later I might even think about a cruise. Oh well I can make more money, but these days are fast slippiing away.

  • July 27, 2013 at 9:14 am
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    I think Bluefox, hit the nail on the head. I think saving money and going to WDW or DLR is worth it. I would only say don’t go is if they are neglecting there daily responsibilities (pay the light bill, food on the table). We do only get to live once, and you little princess will only be 8 years old, 3 months, and 12 days for one day, so make each day count,

  • mm
    July 21, 2013 at 10:22 pm
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    Bluefox71,
    Your post brought me to tears. Sometimes I wonder if people understand the things I write about, or if it ever makes an impact. Well, today you made an impact on me. Thanks for the comment, and thank you for being part of TMSM. Sending blessings and pixie dust to your family! Michele

  • July 21, 2013 at 2:03 pm
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    I just read your post and my wife and I sat here saying the same things you did. I can’t give you an answer that’s right for you and your family, but you touched a key point for us, making memories. Our family planned for 3 years, for what will be our third trip in the past six or so years, for our trip this December.
    You mentioned memories. That was something that strikes a chord with me because my wife is 43 and is disabled.
    We had to come to terms with it and the financial shortfalls that accompany it. We don’t make much money, so we understand about the financial points you made and we MORE than share them with you.
    For us, we had to sit back and think. If some day we were to write a story about our lives, what would our biography say about us?
    I don’t know how much time I will have with my wife in this world due to her condition. I don’t know how many more opportunities we will share with our kids to be able to do to Disney World after this year. My oldest is 18 and not coming. He has his own thing going on. The other 2 are 10 and 8.
    We thought long and hard about the same questions you posed and we agreed with the point about the memories the most.
    How many more trips do we have that the two youngest will still want to go with us? Mom may be using a wheel chair most of this trip. Will it be even harder on her next time? Due to her condition, we can’t say for certain that she will have a “Next Time”.
    We can’t take for granted that there will be a “next year” or a year after that. We have “now” and, for us, we HAVE TO make the most of now. Our kids will be starting their own lives sooner than we think (like my 18 year old is doing). They will be learning heavier loads of responsibility each year and gaining the rewards they earn from them. Their lives will get more and more hectic and they will need us, as parents, for shorter durations of time as they do so.
    So when they become parents themselves, they wont be reflecting back and saying, ” Whew! I remember 15 years ago when my parents paid off the car loan early.” or “Remember the good old days when Dad was able to pay his credit cards up ahead of time?”
    They will tell their children, “Your Grandma got these Mickey ears when I was your age.” “My Dad held my shoulders and kept talking to me on Space Mountain because he knew I was terrified.” “Mulan talked to me and your Uncles for a full half hour. Just us!” “Your Grandparents took me on Star Tours like 6 times in a row one time when I was younger than you!”
    For us, these are memories that will live on after my wife and I are gone.
    We do have to be practical most every other day but this is where OUR legacy begins and we vow to be there for it.

  • July 21, 2013 at 1:28 pm
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    I’m always doing the same thing picking out different dates, resorts, etc to see what the cost of a Disney vacation would be. Thought I was the only one.

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