Countdown to Disney. How to Start Building Excitement Now!
As spring break comes and passes, your excitement for the longer days of summer might start to rise—just like that scorching sun. And if you had the added thrill of an upcoming Disney vacation in the works? You and your family probably won’t be able to contain yourselves. The only trouble with the anticipation of an one-of-a-kind getaway to this magical wonderland is that times passes very slowly. While you and your partner are able to manage your jitters, your kiddos will struggle with patience. Instead of dialing back their enthusiasm, consider these smart strategies to keep them pumped—yet focused.
Here, the best ideas for building the buzz without driving everyone in the house up-the-wall.
Create or buy a daily countdown board.
Once your children catch a whiff of your big vacation news, it’s a good bet they won’t stop talking about it. And better yet: asking you how many dinners, homework assignments, sleeps and sunsets until it’s time for takeoff. As a way to avoid answering this question over and over (and over) again, consider making a chalkboard countdown board where the kiddos can take turns updating it every morning before it’s time to catch the bus. If you’re less than crafty—or merely can’t be bothered to DIY—you can also find inexpensive originals like this one.
Gift a present a week.
Truth: your children definitely don’t need more toys, clothes or items lying around the house. Also true: they’ll want goodies to bring or wear when they visit Disney World. Because merchandise and goods at the parks can be pricey, it’s smarter to purchase t-shirts, tanks, headbands, coloring books, stuffed animals and whatever else your son or daughter ‘need’ off of Amazon or from a bargain store. Since you’ll have plenty of time to stock up before summer arrives, consider wrapping each of these necessities weekly, as a way to keep the magic train chugging along. This will make them continuously thrilled for the trip—and also save you from tantrums once you’re in Florida.
Let them help with planning.
Even if your flights and admission tickets are booked and your hotel stays at the Disney resorts are confirmed—there’s still plenty left to plan for your getaway. Though your specialized Disney travel agent can take care of the details for you, before you give them your wish list of must-experiences, have a family sit down. During this, you can present options that are within your budget to the kiddos and let them have a hand in the planning process. While a few surprises will brighten their experience, the more they know about what to expect, the more stoked they will be for the big day to arrive!
Surprise them with Disney treats.
Extra credit in math class, history tests and biology labs aren’t exactly stellar compared to speeding down Splash Mountain or having the infamous Mickey Mouse himself give you an autograph. To keep your mini fanatics focused on their studies until departure day arrives, creatively incorporate Disney touches in their everyday routine. This might be mouse ear-shaped pancakes for breakfast, a special princess treat in their lunchbox or a dinner inspired by ‘under the sea’ creatures. This way, when they’re stressed or struggling to finish their many assignments, you can provide a glimmer of hope to keep them pushing through the end.
Plan TGIF Disney nights.
Instead of tuning into the shows you missed on Fridays as a family, take a new route and go old school. How so? With a TGIF Disney movie countdown! Start with some of your beloved Disney movies—and perhaps even those of your parents—to catch up on all of your beloved characters before meeting them IRL (that’s short for ‘in real life’, in case you didn’t know). With powerful lessons of friendship and endearing storylines that’ll leave everyone grinning by the credits, it’s a way to bond before taking a much-needed excursion to Disney World together.
Want more ideas?
Talk to a specialized Disney travel agent who can help you come up with more ways to prep your children for their first trip to Florida. No matter if they’re into pirates, princesses or both, there’s a way to get them amped up for the adventure.
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