Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Taking an 18 month old to Disney World

Confession: my son was technically 19 months. Yes, seriously. He's huge, I know.

Confession 2: It wasn't easy--but it was worth it :)

My husband and I contemplated taking our son to the Magic Kingdom while on a Florida vacation. My immediate thought was (oh hell) no. However, after talking to a friend at work, I was quickly convinced when she said, " should go to Disney World every chance you get." and so our story begins...

It was two days after Christmas, you know, that dreaded time that every website warns you Disney is the busiest and worst time of year to go. But, we were going to be in Florida, so we decided to go anyways.

Disclaimer: my parents came too--HUGE help to have an extra set of hands!

I researched online, posted on Facebook, and took everyone's advice, but here's what we did and how it worked out:

Please excuse my outfit. I meant to crop my mom-in-an-amusement-park tennis shoes out of the pictures, but forgot. 


We left our hotel (which was a 10 min. Ride to the park) at 7am despite the fact that the park doesn't open until 8 (good call on our part). By the time we parked, walked, monorailed, and waited in line--we walked right into the park. 

We hit up the Town Square Theater to see Mickey first. It was the one thing I had to do, see how our son reacted to Mickey. We were really lucky and only waited 10 minutes! (I read online the line can get really lengthy). I was terrified of lines. He's at the stage where the thought of being contained much less waiting in line in a socially acceptable manner seemed- impossible. However, with the help of snacks and finding things to keep him entertained (ie-letting him unbuckle the line dividers) we made it. 

When he saw Mickey from afar, it was adorable! 

He was awe-struck. Then it happened...we set him down and he was extremely...shy (A characteristic we didn't know he could possess) and he wouldn't even look at Mickey the Mouse.

 We snapped a few pictures then made our way to the rides.
Sidenote: The Town Theater is a GREAT experience with Mickey. The staff makes sure you get one on one time, pictures, and a personal moment with Mickey in a nice quiet room. Definitely worth it! Be prepared: Mickey now talks. That threw all of us off! 

The unexpected best moment of the day: Dumbo. Who woulda thunk? We went there as our first ride and I was blown away to walk right on! These pictures say it all...

Waiting in line

We even got to ride it twice in a row!

...and this is what happens when the Dumbo ride is over:

We spent the rest of the day snacking, 

walking around exploring, and napping through the parades of the Magic Kingdom.

We rode Ariel's ride...

Walked through the Swiss Family Robinson's house and rode the Haunted Mansion...

Hub-Stud and I even got a pic infront of my castle ;) 

At this point, it was about 12:30, I know it seems like it's only half way through the day, but we called it quits. Up until about 11:30, the park was great. As the day progressed, it continued to get busier and the hustle and bustle of holiday shows, parades, and people was enough. We decided to call it a day and it was perfect. We got to see the entire park, go on almost evey attraction that our son could go on, and made memories I'll never forget. After lunch, we decided to let our son walk around so he could use up some energy before our car ride to the hotel. We bought a handy dandy wrist strap (leash) and it was the BEST idea ever! I always swore I would never leash my child but it was beyond worth it. He thought he was pulling my husband around, he was exhausted after walking and most importantly, he didn't get lost in the sea of people.

I highly recommend leashing your husband 😂

There were a couple meltdowns, some long lines, and lots of people, but despite the warnings that everyone may give you, if you go in with the mind-set that if you walk out of that Magic Kingdom with one lifetime memory, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised