So, Nate and I decided, God help us, that our holiday gift to the kids would be a big trip to Walt Disney World. As he reminded me, they’re 4 and 6, and this is the time that the Magic Kingdom will still be magical. That said, we’re going during the arguably not-so-magical President’s Week, and as the extremely crowd-averse Nate–and uh, every guide book ever–reminds me, on a crowd scale of 1 to 10, that’s about 487.
We are practicing our yoga breathing. Mostly Nate.
Disney also has a special sort of significance to me, because the last time I was there was when Nate and I first started dating. I still remember the moment that, overwhelmed by all the sweaty frazzled parents with their hot, cranky babies everywhere, I collapsed on a bench nearly hyperventilating and told Nate that I didn’t think I could ever have children.
Disney World: Birth Control for the Maternally-Averse
(Think I could pitch it to their ad agency?)
And yet, here we are, all these years later, happy with our spawn, and excited to introduce them to the joys of monorail rides, dancing fountains, and ice cream shaped like mouse ears. Only this time we know that when they say the wait for Peter Pan is 20 Minutes From This Sign, what they really mean is THE REST OF YOUR LIFE.
This weekend, I remembered the wonderful advice in Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project, about how for kids, the planning of a big event is often as exciting than the actual event. So I gathered the girls around me and the MacBook this week, and systematically, park-by-park, attraction-by-attraction, we clicked through everything while they screamed and squealed and bounced up and down too excited to contain themselves.
That plan turned out to be smart. Mostly. With one exception.
Here’s what you should show your 4 year-old about Disney.
Here’s what you should not show your 4 year old about Disney.
[photos via WDW]
Especially when you prematurely tried to introduce her to Young Frankenstein the very same week promising that it was funny and not scary.
Also, mayyyybe you don’t show your 4 year-old the unauthorized ride video of Tower of Terror on YouTube which starts with creepy music and ends with a little girl on the ride holding back tears.
Now, I’m trying to convince them to go to sleep having beautiful dreams about princesses and safari animals, and not about falling elevators in haunted hotels.
Any other advice you Disney experts would like to offer would be more than welcome. Clearly we need it.