You know those people who love Disney so much — they have the family year-round passes? The ones who make the 2-1/2 trek to Orlando once a month in their SUV filled with children and blankets and Disney DVDs?
I am *not* one of those people.
In fact, the thought of going to Disney gives me such anxiety, I’ve only taken my daughter once – when she was 2. And that was a free trip from my husband’s company. So I was pretty much forced to go.
But being the good mom that I am, I offered to take my daughter to Disney for her 6th birthday. My son also has an August birthday, so I figured it was a two-fer.
So we packed up the SUV with the kids, their blankets and Disney DVDs and made the 2-1/2 hour trek to Orlando. And I’m not sure if it was my super-low expectations or the fact that we made all the right decisions, but it wasn’t bad. Yes. I said it. I actually kind of enjoyed myself.
Good decision #1: We picked the right dates.
We chose to go to Disney when most children were just starting school. Our kids didn’t start until later, so it worked out. And we did not have to deal with the typical summer crowds.
Good decision #2: We stayed at a Disney Resort.
We stayed at the Yacht Club, which has a pool like a water park with beach entry, a big pirate slide and lots of waterfalls. Yes, it is more expensive. But it’s worth it! The kids had more fun there than at the parks.
Good decision #3: We did *not* go to Magic Kingdom.
The buses headed to the Magic Kingdom from our hotel had quadruple the amount of people as those headed to the other Disney parks. We did Animal Kingdom one day and Typhoon Lagoon water park the next day. We didn’t wait more than 20 minutes on any ride.
Good decision #4: We had “entertaining” meals.
There is nothing about “breakfast with the characters” or a place called the “T-Rex Cafe” that interest me for dining. Except when I’m with a 2-year-old who lasts about 2 minutes at a restaurant. We ate among animatronic wooly mammoths, loud noises and a light show, but it was the best decision we made.
I actually got to eat my entire meal and drink my entire glass of wine without having to pick up salt shakers or knives or whatever else my toddler decided to throw on the floor.
It was three days of fun. Sanity intact. I haven’t bought a Disney year-round pass, but I may just be talked into packing up the SUV with the kids, the blankets and the Disney DVDs a little more often.