Preview: This ended up being a "quick trip"
in the sense that we only decided to go 1 month prior...so, some of our
"favorites" and/or "musts" had already been booked solid. In fact, that's
how we ended up at FW Cabins... all other accommodations for a family
of six in WDW were booked! We also had trouble booking some of our favorite
dining spots. I was getting nervous that we had made a mistake with our
Crowds: We pulled the kids a little early from school in order to avoid the post-school rush. When I had a hard time booking any other resort (that could take 6 of us in a room), and some of our dining choices were booked...I got a little nervous about crowds. HOWEVER, with careful planning & timing, we managed to avoid the majority of crowds! (Not nearly as bad as last October's trip!) All-in-all, the levels were quite good! Again, our two October (Columbus Day week) trips were much worse than this time period.
Dining: Again, we decided to use the Disney Dining Plan...although, it wasn't quite as good a deal as the "prior-to-2008" version, we still find that it's a decent discount. Despite not getting all of our usual favorites, it was a good opportunity to try out new places! For the most part...we were particularly pleased with all of our meals! The one exception, which we were kind of prepared for, was San Angel Inn in Epcot's Mexico pavilion. The food was mediocre Mexican...but, the ambience is great! (Which is why we decided we needed to try it out.) The shining star of this trip was Spoodles! One of the best meals we've had in WDW! Go there.
Resort: The Fort Wilderness Cabins (and
campgrounds) is such a fun place! The kids loved the freedom of being able
to walk out the door and play! As
recommended, we rented the golf cart to
get around the grounds rather than using the internal bus system. I, too,
would recommend this...most of the time. You see, as it turns out, we
were lucky enough to be placed in one of the two cabins in the VIP area.
This meant, unlike all the other cabins, our cabin was actually 100 feet
away from Settlement Trading post. For those who don't know what this
means...it means we're really close to most of the places we'd want
to get to on the grounds. So, while the golf cart was unnecessary in our
situation, we still used it a bit and the family enjoyed it. Chances are, if
you go, you would benefit from having one...and you need to reserve it ahead
Family: I'm happy to report that this time around, everyone stayed healthy. (No outbreak like last Oct.!) Our only real mistake was that we kept Molly up from her nap on leaving home, with the hopes that she would nap on the plane ride. NOPE. Instead, she was miserable all the way until we sat down to dinner...at which point she promptly switched-off the crankiness and was happy as a lark for the rest of the trip! Daniel finally realized he wasn't dreaming by the 3rd or 4th day of the trip. Hannah was happy that she had her cell phone to text her friends since we made her miss her last day of 6th grade (poor thing!) And Nathan was so well behaved...we've finally made it back to "happy family" vacationing! :-)
Trip Conclusion: Ironically it turns out that this spontaneously planned, last minute, thrown together surprise of a trip was one of our best whole-family trips yet to WDW! This is one of those trips where everything seemed to "fall in place" for us. We thoroughly enjoyed it!
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