Today at my house we are doing the “Single Digit Dance”
What in the world is that, you ask??
The Single Digit Dance isn’t so much a dance, as it is, well, celebration of reaching another milestone in our “Countdown to the Magic”. As our countdown officially stands at 9 Days, we are now in “single digits”. 🙂
So, how do you celebrate a ridiculous, made-up, never before heard of event??
Of course you break out all of your Disney gear, and wear nothing but Disney Shirts, Mickey Ears, sandals, and shorts to work. You listen to nothing but Disney music at home, work, in the car…..
Alright, maybe that’s a little over the top. People would think you were weird or something. (Well, or at least more weird than normal in my case)
At any rate, here are some things you could do to prepare for your upcoming trip:
If you haven’t already started an official countdown, now is the time to do it. Nothing makes the final days move faster than marking them off the calendar.
There are many different ways you could choose from to do your countdown.
Some people make construction paper chain links. Each night your children (or you, I promise I won’t tell) can tear off a link at bedtime. It’s a great visualization for younger children to get an idea of how many days are left.
Others may choose to do something more elaborate, like creating a wooden countdown peg board with mini Mickey heads with the numbers 0 – 9 on them. Each day, they could change the date. Although this approach would take some time to set up, it would be a fun craft for the family to work on, and you could use it year after year.
We typically print calendars that count down the days. On the day we travel, I print a little mickey image. The kids look forward to marking the days off, and at any point, if you ask them, they can tell you EXACTLY how many days are left.
Then, of course there are electronic countdowns including several apps for the iPhone.
Getting Ready . . . For the Fun of it
We generally take this opportunity to get our Disney nerd on. This is when we break out all of our Disney music and Disney themed games.
Now is also the time to watch Disney movies and home movies from past trips. Time to reminisce by looking over pictures and scrapbooks from days gone by and anticipate making new memories.
Getting ready . . . For the Necessity of it
While this time can certainly be fun, it can also be stressful. There are many things to remember to take care of, a list of things to do, and thousands of things to pack.
Here’s a brief checklist of items you should consider:
- Begin packing – the earlier you can do this, the better. Nothing is worse than starting your vacation exhausted because you were up all night the night before packing
- Renew your prescriptions (make sure these go in your carry on luggage. See the link below for my post about the Magical Express)
- Check the Orlando Weather – this may assist in what exactly to pack.
- Which brings up the next point…keep packing
- Confirm all your reservations – Airline, Hotel, Car Rental, Dining – better safe than sorry.
- Make sure that friends, family and neighbors know that you will be gone, and how to get in touch with you in case of emergency
- Make sure you do the laundry you will need while on vacation – You don’t want to be doing it the night before.
- Re-Check the Attraction Refurbishment schedule – this has been known to change over time. It’s best to be prepared if your favorite attraction will be closed
- Charge the batteries for your Camera, Video Camera, iPod, GPS, etc.
- Continue packing
- Stop your mail & newspaper
- Make arrangements for your pets
- Pick up some Disney Gift Cards – this is a great way for the kids to feel that they “paid” for their souvenirs.
- Do Online Check-in (if staying on Disney property) – You can do this up to 10 days in advance of your arrival. By doing this, you can recapture some of the time you would normally spend standing at the counter when you arrive at your resort
- Did I mention Packing? – Don’t forget Park Tickets, Magical Express Vouchers, Airline Boarding Passes, Passports (if going on a cruise)
Enough of the “Necessity”, I want FUN!
OK. I’ll end with some things you can do to keep the excitement going over the last week or so.
Now is the time to make sure you have your itinerary locked down. We always begin with what parks are we touring on what day. From there, we make a list of the “must-do” attractions. These are ones we want to make sure we see. Now, starting with this list, we make a list of the first 3 – 5 attractions we want to see when we arrive at each park in the morning. Nothing is worse than taking the time to jump out of bed at the crack of dawn so you can beat the crowds, then upon arriving at the park standing and staring at a map trying to figure out what you should do first while the masses head to the attractions.
With these thoughts in mind, I’m sure you can have a magical experience.
Are there things you do to prepare for your trip that I didn’t mention? Rituals that your family has as your vacation approaches? I’d love to hear them!
- A Passport to Happiness (adventureswithamouse.com)