Guest Column

Note: All opinions expressed on this page are those of the author and not necessarily those of the disneygeek or of this site.


I recently read a blog post from a lady who wanted to know how she could make sure her hair and makeup looked perfect in her Disney photos in the Florida heat.  Really????  Think about that for a minute…do you think her children cared that her hair had become less than perfect on Splash Mountain?  Would her husband think less of her if a Mickey Ice Cream bar faded her lipstick?
Your Disney trip is not a responsibility…it is not something you are required as a good parent to accomplish before your children graduate from high school....this is your family vacation…one that will make memories for every one of you.  Here are 7 things I have learned, sometimes the hard way, about having a better time on vacation.

  1. Walt Disney said this about his parks, “We believed in our idea, a family park where parents and children could have fun together.”  You will notice that he said children AND PARENTS should have fun.  He did not say that parents should watch while their children have all the fun.  Do not be embarrassed to be a big kid on your vacation.  Hug a character, have your picture taken with Mickey, play along with whatever silliness comes your way.  Believe in the Magic that surrounds you and you will become a part of it.
  1. Wear a little Disney Magic. Personally, I have taken this to the extreme as I have a whole wardrobe of Disney garb but if you don’t, buy a Mickey t-shirt or wear Mickey Ears.  It will make you feel like you belong in Disney World and you will find that you fit in quite nicely with Mickey on your back.  After all, where else can you wear a sweatshirt that says, “I’m a Princess” and have that be a good thing?
  1. “We dance, we kiss, we schmooze, we carry on, we go home happy. What do you say?”  (from Hercules)  If you are lucky enough to be visiting Disney World with the one you love, take advantage of the romantic moments on your trip.  Hold hands, sneak a kiss under the fireworks and enjoy each other’s company.  And they lived happily ever after…..
  1. Roger Rabbit said, “A laugh can be a powerful thing, sometimes it’s the only weapon we have.”
    You probably have expectations of what your Disney vacation should be.  Maybe you are one of those people like me who have every minute of your trip planned on color coded, laminated index cards.  (My family tells me that this is not normal, haha)  However, in the real lives of real people, things are not always perfect.  Let’s say it rains right in the middle of your well planned, color coded, laminated day.  If you run back to your hotel annoyed, so will your children.  Make the best of the situation; throw on a poncho and splash in the puddles while you make the most of the shorter lines.  The way you react to the imperfections can make your trip memorable.   Your kids will remember that you made the best of a bad situation.  They probably won’t remember the rain but they will remember how much fun you had playing in it.
  1. Charlie from Bed Knobs and Broomsticks said, “No fried foods? How do you keep up your vigorousness?”  In our everyday world, most of us try to make good food choices and that is how it should be.  I don’t want to be an advocate for out and out gluttony but I think indulging a little on your vacation is a good thing.  Somebody has to do it... those Mickey Ice cream bars will not eat themselves.
  1. “Take it from an old spectator. Life is not a spectator sport.  If watchin’ is all you’re gonna do, then you’re gonna watch your life go by without ya.” (quoted from the Hunchback of Notre Dame) 
    I often hear, “I’m not a ride person” from my clients.  With very few exceptions, Disney rides are tame by amusement park standards.   Most are about the experience that surrounds you rather than an extreme thrill ride.  For a long time, I was terrified to go on the Tower of Terror and my daughter and husband went without me every time while I waited outside.  One trip, my husband, to whom I will always be grateful, convinced me that I could do it and I decided to give it a try.  He was right but don’t tell him I said that.  I have been hooked ever since.  Unless the mere thought of movement makes you sick, consider riding everything.  You won’t be disappointed.
  1. In the Movies Lilo and Stitch, Lilo says to Stitch, “This is your badness level.  It’s unusually high for someone your size.  We are going to have to fix that.”  If you are travelling with children or teenagers (or maybe a grumpy spouse), meltdowns are inevitable. Talk about the No Whining Rule before you leave home.  When whining starts on your trip, stop everything and get to the root of the problem.  Tired? Hungry? Hot?  Deal with the problem as soon as possible even if it means taking a break when you did not have one scheduled.  This isn’t always easy but no one will be having fun if there is whining and yelling.  Your vacation should be enjoyed, not endured.

Katherine Schutte  

About the author:

Katherine Schutte first fell in love with Disney as a child on a family trip in 1976.  Her passion for all things Disney led her to her career as the Owner of Magical Castle Vacations where she happily makes the magic of Disney vacations come true for families, honeymooners, adult and senior travelers.  She is a graduate of Disney’s College of Knowledge (yes there is such a thing) and has extensive knowledge of Disney World, Disneyland and Disney Cruise Line through her many visits.  Visit her website at MagicalCastleVacations.com

Back to previous page