WRITTEN BY: Lisa Braun, DVC Rental Store Blogger | November 17, 2014
So you’ve decided to take your family on a Walt Disney World Resort vacation and needless to say, you are very excited! Except now, you have to endure the agony of waiting until you depart. Well, what if I told there are ways to stretch out the magic? What if I told you that part of the actual fun is… the anticipation! It’s true, and here are 5 ways to help you stop watching the clock and get focused on the joy of planning and building excitement for your upcoming trip!
#1 DVD’s and Books
One of my favorite things to do is to order one of Disney’s Vacation Planning DVD’s. These absolutely free DVD’s are a fun way to get started planning and to build excitement for your whole family! It’s also a great way to explore the resorts and attractions that your family may want to visit. Here is the link to order your own Disney Planning DVD today!
Also, there are several planning and all-around Disney knowledge books to keep you busy while you wait. By taking the time now to research restaurants, experiences, and even brush up on your Disney knowledge, you will be sure to make the most of your vacation time. For the kids I absolutely love Walt Disney World Resort Guide to the Magic for Kids! It is a fantastic tool for kids to not only learn a lot about Disney but it has stickers, an autograph section and a journal where they rank the attractions they got to do that day. It was my 10 year old’s favorite companion before, during and after our last trip.
#2 Make Decisions Fun
The decision making phase can be a time of excitement for everyone! Gather around the table after dinner with a Disney themed dessert and a calendar to decide dates, and possible itineraries. Make the evening festive and have the little ones to draw Mickey themed decorations! Then discuss the features and benefits of your possible choices and “not to miss” items. Perhaps a vote is in order, or a Mickey Mouse themed secret ballot. The possibilities are endless and everyone will feel a part of the decision making process.
#3 Planning Binder
I wholeheartedly agree with those who feel that “half the fun is in the planning!” I find that having a Disney Planning Binder is not only extremely helpful, but is also a lot of fun! I refer to mine lovingly as my “Disney Bible.” It’s customized with Disney scrapbook paper and each child has a section where they can add their must do list. Some of my divider tabs include my reservation & resort information, flight information, restaurant ADR’s, and our itinerary. I also have sections for our budget, packing and grocery lists as well as a to-do list with a calendar. I bring it along with me on our trip and keep it in the hotel, it ensures I have all of my information handy and is a place that I keep all of the paperwork that accumulates during vacation.
#4 Scrapbooks and Photo Albums from Previous Trips
Each trip for us means a new scrapbook or photo book printed online. Whatever you chose, make sure to get those photos off the computer and printed out in one place. That way when your next trip is around the corner, you can pull them out and reminisce. There is magic in those pages full of memories, they can be relied on to help inspire new wish list items and keep you excited about your upcoming trip! (I also encourage each child to have their own if possible, that way they can write down their own memories and look back on them as they get older.)
#5 Countdown Calendar
This is one of my favorite ways to build excitement for our next trip. There are many options for creating your own countdown calendar, you can chose to go high tech by downloading an app, or you create one the old fashioned way, with paper. When my youngest was little we printed out a blank calendar and let her use Disney themed stickers to mark off each day. When she got a bit older, we cut out 100 Mickey shaped cut-outs and taped them on string to a countdown sign. Then every night before bed she would cut one Mickey off and tuck it into her drawer, until there were none left. (They made great backgrounds in our scrapbook by the way!) While my younger child loved these rituals, my teen appreciated having the app on her phone. Whichever you chose, a physical reminder of your upcoming trip is always a great way to build excitement!
There is no doubt that part of the magic created in a Disney vacation can really last all year through, with a little time, preparation and pixie dust! There you have it; my 5 must do’s to create excitement while enduring the wait until your next Walt Disney World Resort vacation!