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Our Family Christmas Bucket List

Our Family Christmas Bucket List

As we get further into the month of December,  I took a few minutes today to write down the holiday activities on Our Family Christmas Bucket List that are really important for us to share with…

Weekly Meal Plan December 10

Weekly Meal Plan December 10

Our Weekly Meal Plan December 10 shares our family’s quick and easy meals for every day of the week. There are easy ideas for side dishes too! The holiday clock is ticking away…what do you have…

Disney Savings Fund Report November 2017

Disney Savings Fund Report November 2017

Sharing with you a breakdown of how our family funds our family vacations in our Disney Savings Fund Report November 2017.  I’ll be doing this by creating a monthly savings and earning report on the blog.

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Walt Disney Family Quotes

Saving For Disney

Do you want to learn how you too can Save for Disney? I’ve successfully saved for 2 completed trips and I am working on 3rd one now! We also plan on a family cruise in 2019. EVERYTHING I have learned from the trial and errors of each trip.There’s always a new trick I learn on saving for our trips.

As I’ve previously discussed, we began our family vacation goals back in 2011. I began to learn about couponing to Disney and finding ways to make money online so that we could afford an enjoyable trip. We didn’t want the added stress of where the money was going to be coming from.

Here is why I’m publishing these monthly reports:

With the start of a new month, and my totals for September are finally calculated, I wanted to give you a quick update on my Disney fund! My intent with these posts that I’m sharing, is that they will hopefully help those families on a budget learn how they can go on a family vacation for free or practically free. It is possible.

Disneyland Holiday Small World

Planning for Fall Break 2018

Our next trip- 3-Day park hopper w/Premium Character dining and 8 nights at Staybridge hotel.

2018 Cost for 3 adults (our son is bringing a friend) and 3 children (our daughter is bringing a friend) = $5,446.05

This trip will be planned a little different. We are going during Fall break and are planning a couple of  days where we do Mickey’s Halloween Party Night. These tickets require a separate purchase and since we want to do two Mickey Halloween nights, these will be two additional days at Disney. I have not included these tickets in the total cost above. They are to be purchased in July of next year when the dates for Mickey’s Halloween party 2018 are released. I can only estimate that those tickets will cost us around $105 each person for each night. 

Disney Savings Fund Report November 2017

Disney Fund Savings November 2017

Minus the car issues, November was a fairly good month for us…I was able to add $184.39 to our fund, YAY!!(Remember, I said November & December are lower months for us due to Christmas)  Here is the breakdown:

Rebate Checks

  • No rebate checks this month. I don’t do a whole lot of  these types of checks unless it’s something I’m buying and I feel it’s a good deal. As I mentioned last month, with the Christmas season upon us, I’ll be watching those upcoming sales and coupons for money back.

Disney Three Dollar Challenge

Deposit from Paychecks =$ 50.00 (Remember last month I stated we we’re holding off due to Christmas and now I have a new car payment.)

  • I decided on trying the $3 a week saving challenge. I don’t usually keep a whole lot extra cash around so I tend to add the weeks up in between pay periods. Since I get paid on the 15th and on the last day of the month, It’s easier for us to save a totaled amount rather than on a weekly basis.  We tend to save and use only these funds in the event of an emergency.

Swagbucks =$75.00

  • I earned enough points in the month of November to redeem 5 $25.00 e-Mastercards. This is typically the goal I shoot for each month.  These went straight to my payment towards the trip. You can earn a lot of different things with Swagbucks.

Ibotta =$3.50

  • This is cash back program from purchasing grocery staples like milk, fruit, and veggies. I don’t rely too much on this app because I find that it doesn’t always offer cash back on the items my family uses on a regular basis. Last year, I think I earned $25 in cashback. This usually goes straight to our cash envelope for the trip. 

Receipt Pal =$25.00

    • This is a fabulous app! Every time I fill up a card that holds 4 receipt photos, I earn 100 points. Redeemable for gift cards like Starbucks or Target and even some others. Since I’m trying to build up our grocery shopping money for the trip I’m aiming for Target e-cards.

Once I reach a certain number of points in Receipt Pal, I redeem those points for a virtual visa card. Then turn it around for a Target e-card. Total so far for Target e-cards =$25.00

Walgreens app = $3.00

  • This is another app that small savings add up. Every online or in-store purchase earns you points and if you have a healthy tracker like the Fitbit, you also earn points for being active. I could either use these funds to purchase a Disney gift card or items needed for our trip like toiletries.


  • This is a fairly new app for me since I just joined in the month of August. But it ended up syncing some of my  activity starting in July. So far, as of today,  I’ve earned 308 more points this month for a total of $5,155 total points. It sinks with your Fitbit and once you reach 10,000 points,  you can redeem those points for a $10.00 reward. It goes as slow or as fast as you are active.

Achievemint lets you earn rewards with the health and fitness apps you already own, use, and love. They even offer surveys. 

Achievement Rewards

Spare Change Added To Jar Total =$5.00

  • Any extra spare change goes directly into our Disney savings jar. Our first year going, we had $80 in our jar. 

MyGiftCardPlus = Applebee’s =$0.00 (Holding off right now until after the Christmas season)

  • We ended up coming home with $50 in Applebee’s gift cards leftover from our last trip. The hubby and I used one $25 gift card for a lunch date leaving $25 for Applebee’s. I purchased these gift cards through points I earned for virtual Visa or Mastercard on Swagbucks and was in return rewarded more points for the purchases. I earned $150 for Applebee’s on our last trip. Because Applebee’s has a great affordable menu, we’ll be aiming for more gift cards for our next trip. I added another $25 this month.

Farm Fresh Organic Eggs = $4.00

  • Since we have an abundance of eggs from our chickens, I decided to share in the wealth. So I’m getting back into selling our fresh organic chicken eggs to neighbors, co-workers and local residents. (Pictured above is Sierra when she was younger with one of our prize chickens. Thus became our label for Bergala Family Farms.)

Starbucks = $15.00

  • Our “coffee allowance” I cut way back on buying Starbucks coffee here and there so I decided on just adding a little bit of change to our Starbucks fund for our trip. You can never have too much Starbucks while you’re walking around Disney. 

Affiliate Marketing/ebooks and online courses = $3.89

  • I’m trying something a little different with my blog. I never really took it serious in the past but after my blog earned $100 last year in affiliate marketing, I decided to jump on board. Blogging is fun, but it’s also a lot of hard work.  I enjoy it and when I earn $100 just from Google Ads, I thought Wow! I could save that money for future trips. I’m even getting back into writing ebooks and republishing some old ones. 

How To Plan A Family Vacation On A Budget – for those interested in learning how to vacation on a budget.

Join Us On Our Journey……

So that’s it for the November 2017 Disney Saving Report. Follow along each month as we detail our money vacation/holiday saving efforts on the blog.  I hope you’ll follow along with us as I share how our family is able to go to Disneyland on a budget. 

Remember, this is something that YOU can duplicate too.You just need to have a plan in place and the persistence to pull it off. 

We’d love to hear about YOUR saving for vacation journey in the comments below.
Here is our Savings Fund Report for Disney so far:

July 2017 Savings: $446.67

August 2017 Savings: $383.50

September 2017 Savings: $436.25

October 2017 Savings: $266.38

November 2017 Savings: $184.39



Weekly Meal Plan December 3

Weekly Meal Plan December 3

Our Weekly Meal Plan December 3 shares our family’s quick and easy meals for every day of the week. We’re even celebrating National Cookie Day with a few treats. There are easy ideas for side dishes…

Weekly Meal Plan November 26

Weekly Meal Plan November 26

Our Weekly Meal Plan November 26 shares our family’s quick and easy meals for every day of the week. There are easy ideas for side dishes and a delicious dessert too! Happy Monday! I hope…