This is one of my favorite sights! Ever since I was a child, seeing this arch meant a whole lot of fun was coming my way. It’s no different now as an adult but now I get to share that joy with my child.
From the moment we arrived, the excitement was evident on my child’s face – the husband wasn’t far behind either.
We took some pictures with characters…
Silly Baby even kissed Minnie on the nose! This is a child that’s terrified of Santa and the Easter Bunny, but he had no problem with Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy.
He walked hand in hand with a princess…
He drove around some…
And we all got a little silly…
He enjoyed some ice cream on a really hot day.
And splashed around in a fountain.
And we all took a train ride when we were too tired to do anything else.
And the one thing I was worried about turned out to be a non-issue. He napped everywhere!
Then there was the all important first – the reason for our trip to begin with: His First Haircut!
At first he was fine getting his haircut, until the barber next to him turned on the blow dryer. It was downhill from there. Thankfully he was almost done when that happened. We received a baggie with his hair, a certificate, and the mouse ears pictured above that is embroidered with My First Haircut. Overall the first haircut experience was just as magical as the entire trip and I am so glad we opted to have his haircut done at Disney. They were very patient with him and did a great job! And when he gets older I have amazing pictures to show him of his first trip to Disney and his first haircut.
What I Learned
- My child will continue to surprise me and amaze me. The thing I worried about the most – his sleep schedule – turned out to be a non-issue. He wore himself out enough during the day that when it came time to sleep, he willingly laid down in the pack n play and fell asleep without a fight, or fell asleep in his stroller for nap times. There were a few meltdowns from being tired, hungry, hot, or from just being tired of being constrained in a stroller, so we dealt with it all when as it came.
- Long lines are a BIG no-no. Do yourself a favor and get Fastpasses for as many rides as possible. He had a serious meltdown in line for the Peter Pan ride and it went on for 20 of the 30 minutes we were waiting. Once he got on the ride all was well with the world, but the wait was just not happening.
- Try to find moments where you can let the kid run around. It’s not easy chasing a toddler around Disney, but they need to run around too. The Dumbo ride has a play area for the kids to play in for a few, and it’s air conditioned. In Fantasy Land, there is also a little splash pad that I didn’t realize was there until after the fact and is another good place to let toddlers run around and expend some energy.
- We stayed at All Star Movies, which is one of the Disney value resorts, and beyond the pool area, they also had a playground that kids aged 2-12 could use. If you do decide to stay in All Star Movies, I highly recommend staying in the Toy Story area. It’s close the buffet and gift shops, close to the bus stops, and close to the playground and pools, all at a standard room rate. Our room actually ended up right next to the playground. I could open the door and have the baby walk to the playground and watch him from the doorway – not that I actually did that because I’m too paranoid, but if he were older that would’ve been a really nice perk. Besides that, the fact that we didn’t have to walk a mile to get to the bus stop, or back to the room, was great.
- We decided to visit 3 parks: Epcot, Magic Kingdom, and Animal Kingdom. Out of all of them, he enjoyed Magic Kingdom the most, which was to be expected. We are definitely going to do Disney a lot more but next time we will not be doing multiple parks the way we did this trip because 3 parks in 3 days is just not an easy thing to do with a toddler. Next time we are going to spend all our time at one park over multiple days and spend some time relaxing at the hotel as well – something we really didn’t get to do.
Having a toddler at Disney definitely slows down your pace and you just need to adjust to that, but watching his face light up when he meets Mickey or hearing him clapping and saying “Yay!” during the fireworks display makes it all worth it.