New Mommy Blog

Walt Disney World- Part 2

We’ve just returned from an unforgettable fabulous family vacation.  We chose the ever-popular and always amazing Walt Disney World resort as our destination and I’m so happy we did; our trip was as close to perfect as it gets! We have officially survived our first family vacay and even armed ourselves with new knowledge that I intend to use for future travels.  I hope other novices on the family-travel circuit can learn from our experience!

Be resourceful

One of the advantages of choosing a popular vacation destination is the wealth of resources available during the planning period. I checked out every Disney guidebook that was available at my local library and became familiar with the many blogs and websites dedicated to the Disney traveler. I was most concerned about our long car ride, and thankfully I was able to collect tons of tips and tricks from the more experienced traveler.  Contact paper, when attached to the car window, can provide hours of fun when accompanied by feathers and pom-poms.  Micah was especially fond of the multi-colored Post-it® note paper. He loved peeling each piece off individually and sticking it anywhere within his reach over and over again.

My excessive reading allowed me to collect insiders’ secrets to naptime on-the-go. One book suggested riding the People Mover train inside the Magic Kingdom for a guaranteed way to get an over stimulated tot to sleep. This advice was a gem. Not only did it work like a charm, but the Disney folks are aware of the magic virtues this ride has for napping and let us ride it over and over again. The rickety cars travel above the noise and crowds on a quiet (and at times dark) behind-the-scenes tour of the Magic Kingdom.  I cannot express how much of a life saver this was. Within minutes of boarding, he was out cold and Mommy and Daddy had a chance to regroup and relax as well. Best tip ever!

Panhandling is sometimes necessary!

Inevitably, no matter how much you pack, you are sure to leave something at home. For us, it was laundry detergent.  Of course, our Disney diet wasn’t the healthiest. As a result things tended to get a little messy in the diaper department calling for an emergency load of laundry to be done. Be smart, pack your own small supply of laundry soap.  Don’t be caught out there like we were standing in the parking lot, asking other kind families to lend us a quarter or two. The laundry room had a machine that would break bills for quarters to use in the washer and dryer.  We cashed in a ten dollar bill thinking it would be enough for one load of washer and dryer time.  Disney inflation would have this be far from the truth.  Our only other cash option was a fifty dollar bill and we only needed four more quarters.  Who wants to walk around with over forty dollars in quarters?  What to do now? If you’re us, you’ll wander around the facility waiting for a generous family who happens to have spare change.  In the end, one happy Dad gave us plenty of change and asked us to pay it forward. The next night, we left a handful of quarters on top of the dryer in hopes we could help another family with a similar laundry emergency!

Popcorn can be a powerful bargaining tool

My loveable little man wanted to spend his time exploring Disney in our arms. “Mommy up-pah, Daddy up-pah,”  he would ask while reaching his little arms up to us.  On a normal day this is no problem, but anyone who has been to Disney World knows there is a whole lot of walking involved,  which is just fine if you’re not carrying an extra 25 pounds.  Getting him to go in his stroller was not an easy feat and lead to lots of screaming and crying. That is until he discovered Disney popcorn. I don’t know what they put in it, but he couldn’t get enough. 

Before the secret of the popcorn was unveiled, getting him in the stroller went like this:

Me or Hubby: “Micah, I need to put you down now. Let’s get in the stroller.”

Micah: “Noooooo. Mommy up-pah, Daddy up-pah. Noooooo. Ahhhhh. Waaaah. Noooo, up-pah.”

After the secret of the popcorn:

Me or Hubby: “Micah, I need to put you down now. Let’s get in the stroller.”

Micah: “Nooo!”

Me or Hubby:  “We’ll get you popcorn.”

Micah (who immediately stops short of his theatrics and climbs in his stroller happily):  ”Ok, trollah. Cap-corn.”

While I’m not normally a fan of negotiating or bribing my child, I’m also not a fan of an aching back or a sad toddler who just wants to be held and doesn’t understand why he can’t be. This was vacation and we were fully prepared to do whatever it takes, even if we had to refinance some loans to afford all the popcorn.

Bring home the Memories                                                                                                                                    

When we returned home from our trip, I was asked numerous times if Micah was really able to “get it” and have a good time. I can unequivocally answer, “Yes!”  While going on Disney rides for the first time or watching the parades, I would watch him take it all in with awe and wonderment.  He didn’t say much at the time but each night on our way home he would begin to process and download the day’s events. He would say, “I went on it. Dum-bo.  In da sky,” or “Nemo,  Oh-Shin. Again.”   When others would ask him about our vacation, he would say, “I saw Mi-hee mouse.”  He scored major cute points for his canned answer while reassuring us that he definitely “got it.”

We purchased souvenir book s from each park filled with loads of pictures of each attraction.  Micah loves these books and we have incorporated them into his nightly routine. He’ll pick up one of the books, and say, “I went there. Mi-hee live there. I went  to Diss-nee.”  As we turn the pages, he points out all his new friends such as Ariel, Peter Pan, and Winnie the Pooh. The books have provided us with the ability to relive the magic of our vacation as a family. It’s greatthat we can revisit Disney whenever we want simply by looking at pictures,and it doesn’t cost us a dime!  So, whether its photos, videos, or souvenirs, don’t miss the opportunity to relive your hard earned vacation over and over again. 

Well, it’s time to start planning our next family outing. What are your ideas and suggestions?