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I'm not into Lego for the money, but for the pure enjoyment of turning your ideas into reality. (what the heck happened to "just imagine" on the back of instructions!?) There's more to Lego than money ;-)
Technic isn't a theme I enjoy, but this set looks pretty awesome.
I'd love to see a rerelease of this set so I can build one.
For $400, I can either have #41999, or I can have 3 or 4 other Technic sets that will also give me enjoyment. There is nothing wrong with making the personal choice to keep #41999 if that makes you happy. It wouldn't make me happy, I'd rather have the Mobile Crane Mk II, Service Truck, and Excavator.
Those three sets cost about what a #41999 is worth, it is strictly a personal choice as to what makes you happy.
To put it another way, a year ago I had collected every single UCS SW set that LEGO has made, including the two busts and even the rather lackluster Naboo Starfighter.
Today? I own fewer than half of them. Why?
The price got to the point where I looked at them on the shelf and said to myself, "you know what? I can take my family to Disney World for what those are worth".
So that's what I'm doing, taking the family to Disney World next year with the money.
That doesn't mean I love LEGO less, it just means that they brought me enjoyment and it is time to move on and have new enjoyment. My son will get to go to Star Wars weekends and my daughter will get to have dinner in Cinderella's Castle. Both will remember that for the rest of their lives.
We're staying on the Disney property, so we can just walk to Epcot, or take the shuttle/monorail to the other places.
Next year we might do a trip to Legoland and Universal Studios and skip Disney outright, instead planning a trip to everything else that is in that area.
This year? We took a cruise on Carnival Magic, the kids loved that, they still ask to go back on it every month.
I'd love to do a Disney cruise, but my lord, they are proud of that, talk about expensive. A suite on Carnival is less expensive than a regular cabin on Disney.
Side note, that was a perfect week, very little crowd, all the holidays lights out and parades and we lucked out on the weather, 5 days in the high 70ies and 1 day in the 50ies...
I think I would probably skip on the Disney hotel as even a Disney loving fool like me needs a break from those big ears. Last time I went (about ten years ago - had to take my wife before we had kids so she could love it as much as me, shed never been and just didn't get it, until we got there) we stayed at the crowne plaza, close enough we could watch the Disney fireworks from our balcony. Other than a couple of conferences it felt like we had the place to ourselves which was nice too!
It also depend on when you book, I watched on and off for a few weeks until the price was where I wanted it. :)
Plus, keep in mind that we did a package that included theme park tickets, meal plan, etc. The cost is broken out by the various items and you can price them separately. I don't know if the hotel could have been had as cheaply purchased by itself.
The total cost for 2 weeks is just over ten thousand, all up... not counting what we spend when we get there, I budgeted a thousand a day, which is what my friends who have been recently tell me it costs to do it right.
It is indeed insane, but Disney is a magical place, there is nothing else like it on Earth. I've been to the other parks, including Universal, it is nice, but not the same.
Our neighbor on our street who has 2 girls went this past summer, first time for them. They went because of course their friends went and told them how magical it is...
Now they understand...
To anyone who hasn't done it, I don't want to overstate the point... but there is a reason they sell out almost every week of the year, charging what they charge.
I have friends who have taken small children (5 ish) and I honestly think it's either better to wait or go again later in life. So much for a little one to appreciate. I would take Vegas over Disney now I'm all grown up though :-)
Anyway for your national park I raise you a splash mountain, anamatronic bears beat the real thing plus you get a catchy theme tune, a log flume and a turkey leg waiting for you when you get off! ;-)
But it is a once in a lifetime experience, and to young kids, there is indeed something magical about it.
My 5 year old (who will be 6 next year when we go) has seen the DVD with Cinderella's Castle, but it won't be the same as walking up to it (and into it). The actual building is just under 200ft tall, which isn't all that impressive to adults, but do you know how big that is to a 6 year old?
It might as well be the Empire State Building!
She'll get to meet Cinderella, have her picture taken with her, wear the dress, and eat in the castle.
Can you put a little girl more on cloud 9 than that? She gets to be a princess, in a "real" princess castle.
My 8 year old boy? When asked what he wants to be when he grows up, answers "a Jedi Knight". You're telling me Star Wars weekends, the Jedi training academy, and actually seeing a platoon of "real" stormtroopers and Darth Vader, in person, won't send him over the moon?
Yes, it is crazy expensive, yes, it is commercialism at the extreme. But I'm ok with that.
Regarding the RV thing and the national park thing, that is actually on our list as well. Perhaps 2015... A month of that won't cost nearly as much as two weeks of Disney, so it will be a nice break for the wallet.
My comment about feeling bad is exactly part of the marketing even if not overt. Many parents feel like if they aren't able to take their kids to Disney, they have somehow failed or let their kids down. It is to me sad that feeling is what drives many families to take vacations they probably can't afford. Especially when we have so much amazing natural and cultural wonder for far cheaper in most cases. Sadly, animatronic bears do trump the real thing to many people.
And seriously, can you cool it with the line breaks? =D
The M4 that I own now is likely to just piss the bear off, even unloading the whole magazine into it (and unlike the AK, the M4 is semi-auto only). I am not convinced that even SS109 rounds would really stop a big grizzly bear in the charge.
Frankly, a much better gun would be a 12 ga with slugs (my personal choice is a M4 Super 90), or a M1 Garrand (which is heavy, but will reliably stop any bear).
I personally prefer automatic weapons rather than bolt action or lever action (which is why I own a semi-auto shotgun), but frankly anything shooting a .30-06, .47-50, .338 Win, or something similar will do the trick, if you have any accuracy of course.
The truth? Bear spray and common sense are your best defenses against bears. Knowing how to use cover and trees and to never run in a straight line (the bear is much faster and will just run you down) are more important than the size of your gun.
Seriously, though, I like how threads meander a bit. It makes this forum much more entertaining and interesting than it might otherwise be.
And there was my lad over the moon with the Lego Play book he received from Grandma a couple of weeks ago. A fiver. :o)
Road Trip to Yellowstone national park with a 3 yr old...$xxxx on Mastercard.
Road trip to Yellowstone National park with a 5 yr old ...$xxxx on Mastercard.
Seeing the bear in the next door neighbor's backyard...priceless! :-)