Posts Tagged ‘babywearing’

Our First Disney Trip: Stuff To Bring

Thursday, June 22nd, 2017

This post contains affiliate links, so if you click through I make a few pennies. I purchased everything in this post with my own actual dollars.

Disney trip packing list

As part of my Disney World prep research, I’ve found lists on lists on lists. Disney packing lists, lists of things you can buy before your trip, things you can bring to make your trip easier, things you absolutely must not forget, things you should have shipped to your hotel, things you can get cheaper before you go and obscure things you never would have even thought to pack. (My Pinterest board has a lot of those lists saved.)

It’s a lot of lists, is what I’m saying. I bought almost everything on every list I found because a) I like to be prepared and b) I like buying things. It turns out some of this stuff was WAY more useful/fun/important than others, so I’ve added notes explaining what changes I’ll make if (when) we go again.

Weather related:

Rain cover for Disney World

  1. Second seat and rain cover for our stroller. I have a gorgeous Joovy Caboose Ultralight Graphite stroller that has a sit-and-stand rear bench seat. But because I have two kids who will need to nap during the day I wanted two full seats for resting. I got the rain cover because I took the “June is the rainiest month in Florida” advice to heart. Aaaaand then I forgot to pack the stupid rain cover. Good news: Amazon Prime delivered one to our hotel on day 2. And it was totally worth it – it rains every day in Florida in June and the days with the rain cover were way easier than the days without the rain cover.
  2. Cheap ponchos. Kid-sized ponchos for the kids and grown-up sized ponchos for me and E from the dollar store. We all own perfectly nice raincoats, but who has room for raincoats? Ponchos are the way to go. Post-trip advice: The Disney ponchos you get in the parks are WAY nicer than dollar store ponchos. They gave us a set as part of the special Star Wars tour we did, but next time I will just buy the official park ones if we need them.
  3. Cooling towels. I’ve been meaning to buy one of these for a while to help keep the baby cool when I wear him during hot summer months. This seemed like the right time to invest in a couple and see if they really help. (They helped enough to be worth the purchase.)
  4. Sneakers PLUS extra shoes. I bought these cute, super lightweight sneakers for myself a few months ago and broke them in. My back-up shoes are my trusty sparkle flip-flops from last year . E bought sneakers and waterproof shoes from Land’s End. I got new shoes for the kids a few weeks before we left and had them break them in – second-hand Crocs for all three kids, plus sneakers.
  5.  Sunscreen. Tons of sunscreen.
  6. Rechargeable misting fan. This was great both as a way to cool down and as a way to distract a bored toddler.

Souvenier related:

  1. Lanyards to hold Disney pins. I ordered 3, because I figured I should include Linc even though he’ probably too small to really understand pin trading. Plus the little pouches on the end will be good for holding pressed pennies (see #3).
  2. A whole bunch of pins for trading. This post is a great explanation of pin trading and I took his advice and found a reputable seller on Ebay to order some pins for the kids to get started. I was pleasantly surprised with what we got – lots of princesses and Mickeys, not just junk. When I divided 50 pins up by 3 lanyards it filled them almost completely, so the kids will be able to trade as much as they want. Here is my pin trading advice: it is really fun, but it is time-consuming and the backs fall off the pins A LOT. We ended up buying extra backs at the park because it got so annoying. We will probably do more pin trading on future trips, but I wouldn’t put it on my must-do list for kids at Disney.
  3. Change for the pressed penny machines. My kids LOVE pressing pennies – there are machines at a lot of New Englandy tourist attractions, so we do them fairly often. I decided to plan ahead for Disney with as much advice as I could find. I sorted our change collection to find pennies from before 1982 so they’re all solid copper. I cleaned and polished them with white vinegar. And then I stacked the pennies with 2 quarters into a mini M&M’s tube, so it’s easy to grab correct change each time we see a machine. I even made a cute label for the tube. Post-trip advice: you don’t have to make it a huge thing like I did, but the penny machines are everywhere and really fun. Bring some change.
  4. Secure a toy leashes. I figured at some point, Linc would talk me into buying him a plush and then we would probably lose it immediately. I tried to prevent that by being prepared to attach his new lovey to either the stroller or the Tula. Good news: this worked with the Woody doll. Bad news: I didn’t put one on Pluto and we lost him immediately.
  5. Over the door organizer for our reusable drink cups. I saw this on a blog and thought it was GENIUS. These cups are going to be super popular this summer back at home, so I really wanted to make sure we held on to them. Real world experience: Meh. We brought the cups to the parks 2 days and never actually filled them with water. You only get free soda refills at the resorts, so although they were good at the hotel they weren’t worth dragging around the parks. Our meals came with drinks so we mostly just drank during meals and the kids used water fountains in between.
  6. A whole bunch of glow sticks. We have plans to hit light shows/parades/fireworks at every park. Planning ahead will hopefully save me a bunch of cash and let my kids share with other kids around us to make our evenings more fun. A+ IDEA, will do again.
  7. An autograph book. I bought the official Disney Parks one from the Disney Store. Then I also read a great tip that a book of Disney characters makes a fun souvenir kids can look at and re-read long after the trip. I figure the kids could spend time in lines, at meals and between attractions marking pages and looking for the characters they wanted to have sign their book. I also bought mini sharpies for the kids to keep on their lanyards and fancy pens to use with the princesses. Some of the advice I read said things like that make it easier for the characters to interact with you, and since we’re doing several character meals I wanted to make sure the kids have great interactions. <—— Get the book, this was SUPER fun. Linc pointing at the picture of the character he was meeting and saying “You!!! You!!!!” was adorable every time.
  8. Rainbow Wikki Stix for the kids to play with while waiting for meals.
  9. Jedi Academy books. Evan loves these, I figured a new one would be a good surprise.
  10. A few small stuffed toys from the Disney Store. Definitely cheaper to order online during a sale and pull them out as surprises instead of paying the in-park mark-up.
  11. Tiaras from Claire’s at the mall. Again, cheaper to bring than buy!
  12. Other small toys – a Moana doll for Caroline, some Star Wars stuff for Evan, etc – collected from Target, Amazon, Disney Store over the past months. We ended up buying 3 pirate swords, ears for everyone, and 3 Jedi light sabers, but bringing surprised toy gifts definitely saved me from buying more expensive stuff in the parks.

Pin trading at Hollywood Studios

Pin trading at Hollywood Studios

Alternative to a Disney character autograph book

 

Health-related;

  1. Disney band-aids. Because everything has to be Disney themed.
  2. New skin for blisters.
  3. Tylenol and Advil in dosages for every family member.
  4. Zip-lock bags in big a medium sizes.
  5. BIG band-aids for skinned knees.
  6. Anti-chafe gel, for me.

Other stuff:

  1. A cheap waterproof holder for my phone.
  2. A new strap for my camera so I can wear it cross-body.
  3. A portable charger for the cell phones. I would honestly recommend getting one of these to anyone. We’ve used it a TON before we even leave for vacation – it’s so handy to charge my phone in my purse while I shop at Target or wait at ballet.
  4. Two Pokemon Go Plus devices. Don’t judge! As a family we all still love to play, but I don’t want anyone staring at their phone (including me!) while we’re in the parks. The kids love carrying these and seeing them light up and buzz.

And here are the things I would add to the lists:

  1. Baby carrier(s). E and I both wore both kids every day. I wore Finn constantly (it felt like constantly at least) because it was the easiest way to nurse. He also napped better on me. And in the evenings when it was time to go back to the hotel and Linc was passed out in the stroller, it was great to be able to put him on our backs when we had to fold up the stroller for the bus. I was a little worried there would be a lot of rules for wearing on rides, but only one time did anyone say anything about turning Finn around.
  2. Diaper cream. HERE IS MY BEST DISNEY TIP: Bring diaper cream. Even if you don’t have kids in diapers. It’s very, very soothing on any chaffed skin or rashes or sore spots. My husband would recommend boxer briefs over regular boxers and I would recommend cotton underwear and we both really recommend diaper cream.
  3. Sunglasses for the kids. When it was sunny, it was REALLY sunny, and they were grumpy when they didn’t have their sunglasses.
  4. Googles. We forgot ours and had to buy them in the hotel shop for the day we spent at the hotel pool.
  5. Batteries. You’ll need them for something, at some point, and they’re way cheaper when you buy them outside of the parks.
  6. A large, comfortable backpack to hold all your stuff. You can take your bag with you on almost every ride (worst case is you leave it in a cubby like on the Avatar ride) and if you have kids you’re carrying a lot of stuff, so make sure you have a bag you don’t hate carrying. And pack efficiently, because if you do have to fold up the stroller for transportation, you need to get all the junk you’ve shoved into the basket of the stroller back in the bag.

Babywearing at Disney World

If you’re lucky enough to be going on a kid-free Disney trip, let me condense the list down for you: Cell phone, comfortable shoes, diaper cream, sunglasses. You DSLR if you’re someone who likes photography. Don’t carry anything you don’t have to, because you’ll need your hands free for snacks, drinks and pointing and laughing at all of us who are schlepping tons of stuff around for the kids.

I JUST REMEMBERED SOMETHING ELSE! I ordered BitBelts for our Magic Bands and they were a lifesaver. They saved everyone’s Magic Bands from falling off at least once. Totally worth a couple bucks, because losing a Magic Band would be such a hassle and could ruin all your plans for the day.

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Thursday, June 8th, 2017

Current mood: I’m not at Disney World so I don’t care about anything. This week is cold and stupid.

Sunday:

Cousins checking out the back yard

Cupcakes + lake = perfect

Sand is delicious too I guess

Monday:

This dog thinks it’s a cat

Caroline is going to be the card player in the family

Tuesday:

Baby on my back

Is it a door? Maybe it was?

We walked here. You can see Mohegan Sun casino on the right down the river. We live really close.

Wednesday:

New hair cut

New goggles

I think Evan might be a vampire?

Thursday:

Private lake morning

Family fun night

Good job Linc

Friday:

I feel the same about laundry Linc

Love youuuuuuu Cosmic Kids

Saturday:

Back at the salon

Purple hairs for Disney!

Evening playdate for the kids

Seriously, guys, it was FIFTY DEGREES yesterday. It’s June. I can’t handle this. I realize pretty soon it will be 95 and I’ll be wishing it was cooler again, but never do I want it to be 50 degrees in June. Next week when I’m in Florida and sweating my butt off I won’t even be mad.

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Tuesday, May 30th, 2017

We have less than 2 weeks left until Disney World and I’m pretty sure I’m not going to be able to hold off telling the kids for much longer. I’m so bad at surprises.

Sunday:

Really excited to be at Lake Compounce

Evan’s face before we went on the roller coaster. His after face was not happy.

Caroline’s face all day

Monday:

Once Finn is walking these two are going to be double trouble

Evening yoga

Tuesday:

Are you sure this is breakfast? Why is it on the floor?

Couch naps

My favorite child

Wednesday:

You can see our rainbow umbrella is his eyes

Skeptical of the art show

Art show snacks

Thursday:

I gave him nutella, it was a mistake

Now he’s trying to eat his siblings

Peace Out

Friday:

How I feel about getting changed in front of people too

They REALLY love yoga

Saturday:

Took our cousin to the beach

And to the splash pad

 

And taught him yoga

I don’t know why I’m missing so many photos from this week. I THOUGHT I took lots. I’ll try to do better this week, although so far today I’ve taken zero and it’s 2 pm. But that’s because I’ve been listening to podcasts on my phone while I try to get the entire house cleaned and organized and back to the almost-always-ready-for-company level of tidy that I had achieved at the beginning of the year.

In other news, do you follow my 365 project on Facebook or Instagram yet? I figured I should put those photos someplace where people can see them, since my photography is my main claim to blogging fame (very very very tiny amounts of blogging fame) these days.

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Thursday, May 18th, 2017

There is an awful lot of my face in this week’s pictures, because it turns out when I am without my children I have a lot more time to put on make-up, do my hair, generally relax and enjoy myself. I also took a LOT of photos of things I ate, because food made my someone else is very exciting for moms.

Sunday:

I went to the spa for a facial like I’m some sort of fancy celebrity

And then I went to lunch with these weirdos

This is one of my favorite views

Monday:

Packing

Watching Animaniacs “for the kids”

Me: Don’t shine that in my eyes. Linc: OK *shines it in his eyes*

Tuesday:

Mocha mint whatever. It’s delicious.

Not real life: Kia arrives to take me to dinner because I’m in the right place at the right time.

I ate/drank like 75% of the things in this photo all by myself

Wednesday:

Palm trees…swimming pools…

Not real life: when Olive Garden leaves you wine and glasses in your room

My only photo of my insane rainbow caftan. It was PERFECT.

Thursday:

I’m wearing a romper in this photo. Tiffany looks like a model and I’m basically a toddler.

I have known Kim on the internet since before I even HAD a blog.

Not real life: Hair stylists and champagne

Friday:

I’m not stealing all the cheese I’m just taking a picture. And then stealing all the cheese.

Fancy hair again

They’re going to kill me for posting this photo

Saturday:

Diet coke for breakfast, as it should be

Blue skies

Exhausted sweaty face IN FIRST CLASS

I had such a good time at Mom 2.0 in Florida. Because this isn’t 2011 I won’t write a whole recap post, but I will say Mom 2 is still my favorite conference where I feel like I meet the best people and always feel like I belong. The scary “omg she’s so famous”-ness I felt at other conferences just didn’t exist. I don’t know if I’ll make it to 2018 in California but if I don’t I will spend that week crying under the covers because I miss my people so much.

The good news is now we are officially LESS THAN A MONTH AWAY from our family Disney trip and I can freak out in earnest. I’ll have everyone 100% packed by next week. The kids are going to be like “Mom, why can’t I find any underwear or shorts?”

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Monday, May 8th, 2017

I should he packing but I also figured I should get my blog up to date because I’m going to a blogger conference. So I’ll probably forget my underwear but at least anyone who looks will know what we did two weeks ago.

Sunday:

“Mommy take my picture on this rock like a magestic unicorn”

New England baby doesn’t care the water is freezing

Hikers

Monday:

Muffin helper

Chopping down a tree

INSISTS on walking on walls, even when blocked by bushes

Tuesday:

Peek a boo

Naps

More naps

Wednesday:

He loves feet

Puddle jumper

ALL THE NOPES FROM ME

Thursday:

Naps

More naps

SO EXCITED FOR THIS ROLL OF FILM

Friday:

Messsssssssss

Running in the daffodils

I love this view

Saturday:

Fresh eggs are the best eggs

Photographed a wedding at a castle!

Making mud pie on the back steps. In his pajamas.

I am watching Animaniacs with my children and trying to decide how many jokes to explain to them. Is “Boo-ryshikov” the chicken still funny if you don’t know there’s a person named Baryshnikov?

Considering how hard they are laughing, I think the answer is yes.

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