Trip Planning: A FAMILY Adventure in Autism (Part 2)
Monday, May 23, 2011
It was the one-year anniversary of our family’s last trip to Walt Disney World and I was missing it terribly, especially knowing that we would not be able to take a vacation that year. *Heavy Sigh* We had been extremely blessed to have been able to visit Disney every year for five years in a row and I was truly grateful. But, let’s face it: I had become spoiled. That one year of waiting had been difficult and now an even more painful Year Two was about to begin.
I began to reminisce about our trip and talk dreamily to the family about the next one, in November 2011. To my surprise, I got shot down immediately!
I already explained how Jersey Week gave us the best of all worlds… good weather, lower crowds, minimal loss of school time for the kids. Well, for my daughter Trish, the High School freshman, that minimal loss was no longer acceptable.
Trish was adamant that a week at Walt Disney World would be out of the question. “I can’t miss any school, Mom, I’ll fall too far behind!”
Puh-leez! What drama! The kid is a solid B+ student, and that’s while carrying two Honors classes. Missing two measly days of school couldn’t affect her GPA all that much!
Okay… before I incur the wrath of my teacher-friends… YES, I applaud her commitment to her grades; of course I do. And YES, she does have perfect attendance so far this year. However, she is thinking of taking a third Honors class next year. And, she is planning to go out for soccer next fall and, unlike field hockey (which she played this past year) the soccer season stretches into Novemer, which means that important end-of-season games will be missed.
So it seemed at the time that Jersey Week was out, leaving me three less desirable alternatives: Summer Vacation, Spring Break, or Christmas Break.
Summer (August, since Billy attends summer school in July) – BLECHH! I honestly don’t think I could tolerate that Central Florida heat and humidity; it would ruin my trip. However, the crowd levels would be good, especially in the last two weeks. But then, Ed reminded me that he would most likely be taking intensive summer courses again, so that was the end of that idea!
Spring Break – UGH! Easter Week is so crowded and expensive, DVC points-wise. Crowded conditions are definitely not good when mixed with Billy’s sensory and behavior issues. But, the weather would be more tolerable than August, that’s for sure.
Christmas Break – GAGHH! The MOST crowded, MOST expensive week to visit Walt Disney World! And the weather can be quite unpredictable. It is, however, the most festive time of the year!
With August eliminated I now had to choose between busy, expensive Christmas Week of 2011 and busy, expensive Easter Week of 2012! Since there really didn't seem to be that much difference in crowds and costs, I chose Christmas Week and began to plan accordingly. If we were going to have to deal with crowds, at least they would be in festive spirits!
We would have to reduce our stay from the usual seven nights to six in order to make up for the additional point cost of our DVC accommodations, and I would have to seriously alter our touring plans so that Billy could have plenty of breaks but hey… we were going to Disney and that’s all I cared about!
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