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blaseckie
09-14-2008, 03:47 PM
We will be travelling to Disney in November with our 3 year old daughter. If anyone has some great tips for our holiday it would be much appreciated! And yes, she does love princesses.:flower3: :flower3:

miksilver
09-14-2008, 06:56 PM
Here are a few of my tips from my last trip with my DD3:

Plan to do a Princess meal. It's guaranteed Princess time with no extra waiting time in line. We even brought one of her favorite Princess paperback books for the Princesses to sign. They liked it and I liked having something for her to sign without going crazy with the autographs. Remember to have her wear a costume. I put the costume over my DD's clothes and when she's too hot or uncomfortable it's so easy to take it off.

My DD loves doing Pressed Pennies. The machines are all over the park and she loves looking at them in her penny book. We used the mini m&m's tube to make it easier on all of us.

Even though your daughter is probably out of a sippy cup at home we found it easy to bring with us a disposable sippy cup and fill with water. I didn't have to worry about it leaking or having her spill water all over herself when she tries to drink from a regular water bottle.

On those rainy days it was easier for me to pack a small raincoat for my DD than to use the child poncho. She was in her stroller anyway and it's a pain to get a wet poncho on and off. Instead, she would wear the coat and put the poncho on her lap to cover her legs.

If you don't want to pay all of the money for BBB, or think your DD is still too young for the experience try the MK Barber Shop. They'll put glitter and colored gel in your DD's hair for a fraction of the price for BBB. Your DD will get so much attention.

My DD doesn't normally take a nap at home, but at WDW sometimes she needs a rest. Ok, my DH needs a rest too! :laughing: Make sure your schedule is paced out. If you have an early riser then rope drops would be great. My DD is a night owl and so we attended some EMH's. Do what fits your family, but don't do too much. WDW can easily overwhelm a 3 year old. Heck, it can overwhelm most adults... :upsidedow

I think I've gone a little crazy here. I hope those suggestions help. Have a great trip! :thumbsup2

Roccosmom
09-14-2008, 07:13 PM
We will also be in WDW in November with our 3 year old son- any suggestions for 3 year old boys? We went last year and he LOVED the characters but we have no idea how he will react this year.

Thanks in advance!:worship:

Aristomommy
09-14-2008, 07:18 PM
Depending on which part of November you are going, you may be able to see some of the holiday decorations. We went November 7-17 and we were able to see Osborne Christmas Lights at Disney Hollywood Studios, Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party at Magic Kingdom and enjoyed the decorations throughout.

I second the opinion on scheduling a Princess character meal. Cinderella's Royal Table is likely to be sold out by now, but I prefer the Princess Storybook meal at Epcot (Norway) much better. This allows your DD one on one interaction with princesses without waiting in long lines.

If you tell us when you are going, how long you are staying, if you are staying on property and your other interests, there may be more specific things to suggest.

*pixie*dust*
09-15-2008, 08:55 AM
Plan for a rest during the day. Go back to your room for a couple of hours to nap and unwind.

Try to put the gift shop shopping all together so that she won't have the " buy me this, buy me that, I want that". Knowing that there is a set time to get something special always helps my DS (3) tremendously.

Don't try to see and do everything. Plan and prioritize.

Have a great time!

firstadventure
09-15-2008, 09:19 AM
This will be our first trip to Disney. It should be a blast! I do worry about the 3 yr old getting tired and overwhelmed. My 8 yr old will be fine, I think. I've been told it's good to have some rest time, and also to take a break midway thru your vacation just to relax.

My daughter is into Princesses too. She says she can't wait to see Cimbrella's castle (Cinderella). Too funny

blaseckie
09-15-2008, 10:08 AM
We will be travelling from November 22 to 29. It's looking so far like we'll stay at the Port Orleans French Quarter or Riverside. That seems to be the most popular consensus so far for toddlers. It's just the 3 of us. We're also wondering about the dining plan and if it's worth it or not. Princesses are her main interest but she is quite brave and we'll probably manage to get her on a couple small roller coasters. Ariel is her favorite.

BigEeyore
09-15-2008, 10:31 AM
My DD is also 3, and our next trip will actually be her 5th to WDW:scared: !
Definitely make some ADR's for some character meals - we are going to try out 1900 Park Fair at the GF which does Cinderella at dinner. Also, my DD loves the Pooh characters (who doesn't?) so we always do Crystal Palace (plus the food is awesome!).
Get fast passes whenever possible, as little ones don't do well in long lines.
Dumbo does not have a FP (wish they did!), but you can get the same sort of ride experience w/ less wait at the Aladdin magic carpets in adventureland, or the Dinosaur section of AK.
My DD loves the parades, so we make that a priority. Get some seats in the shade if you can!
Try to do character greetings where the kids cannot see the characters until they are at the front of the line (if the wait is long) - once they see them, they want to meet them NOW! We like to hit the toontown character greeting as early as possible - you wait in the AC, and one line will get you at least 3 characters.
I could go on and on! I love seeing the magic thru my DD's eyes - hope you have a great trip!

Picabo
09-15-2008, 02:27 PM
If you don't want to pay all of the money for BBB, or think your DD is still too young for the experience try the MK Barber Shop. They'll put glitter and colored gel in your DD's hair for a fraction of the price for BBB. Your DD will get so much attention.



DH has already "warned" me that we are NOT going to spend all that money to do BBB. So I'm VERY interested in MK Barber Shop! Do you need an appt? How can I get more info? How much does this cost? So I do her hair myself and bring her to MK Barber shop for glitter/gel, etc? Or do they style it also??? THANKS!!! :lovestruc

miksilver
09-15-2008, 03:14 PM
They will do a little style on your DD's hair at the Barber Shop -- they pulled my DD's hair into a ponytail and hairsprayed and gel-ed her front bangs back. They made colored stripes from her hairline to her ponytail, stuck on some larger glitter peices (castles and stuff) and then put on the pixie dust (medium glitter peices -- not the fine stuff they use at the BBB). My DD got a haircut that day as well since she needed a trim and it cost $20 including the tip. They don't take appointments so it's first come, first serve. That trip the longest line we waited on was for the Barber Shop, but my DD wasn't complaining at all since she really wanted her hair done. We're going to try to get it done again this trip, but I'm not sure we'll be able to fit it in.

Narnia
09-15-2008, 04:44 PM
I'm also going with a three year old:yay: My huge issue is how clean is the change areas? she's not potty trained yet!

Picabo
09-15-2008, 06:27 PM
They will do a little style on your DD's hair at the Barber Shop -- they pulled my DD's hair into a ponytail and hairsprayed and gel-ed her front bangs back. They made colored stripes from her hairline to her ponytail, stuck on some larger glitter peices (castles and stuff) and then put on the pixie dust (medium glitter peices -- not the fine stuff they use at the BBB). My DD got a haircut that day as well since she needed a trim and it cost $20 including the tip. They don't take appointments so it's first come, first serve. That trip the longest line we waited on was for the Barber Shop, but my DD wasn't complaining at all since she really wanted her hair done. We're going to try to get it done again this trip, but I'm not sure we'll be able to fit it in.


That's awsome! Thank you for that tip! That ought to allow for my little girl (who will be 3 at the time we go) to get her hair done! I wonder if they'll do 2 yr olds there also. (I know BBB you have to be 3 yrs or older, I assume the same age for MK Barber Shop!) Well, thanks again! That's just awsome!

I'm also going with a three year old:yay: My huge issue is how clean is the change areas? she's not potty trained yet!

Well I have this fear EVERYWHERE I go (with my 1yr old)! :rotfl: I have a changing pad that I carry in the diaper bag. I beleive you can also buy disposable changing pads at Babies R Us, Target, etc. (For travel). They're made of paper with plastic underneath....

Now you have me wondering about my 3yr old who IS potty trained. Do they have toilet seat covers (the paper ones) for the toilets?? Otherwise, I'm going to need SEVERAL packs of Wet Ones wipes! haha

Anonomom
09-15-2008, 07:48 PM
We just got back from 5 nights with our 2.5 year old (her birthday's in December, so she's really closer to 3). My biggest tips:

1. Be prepared to skip any and all rides that prove scary to your DD. She LOVED the Barnstormer and some of the more physically intimidating rides, but was scared by random things like the thunder scene in Living With the Land, the trolls in Norway and pretty much everything in Philharmagic. We ended up rejiggering our plans so we didn't take her on, say, Pirates.

2. It's amazing how things that seem little and insignificant can delight little kids. I think DD could happily have spent an entire day at the resort (POR) looking for lizards. She was just fascinated by them. She also spent a good half hour in front of the Rainforest Cafe at DTD, staring happily at the animatronic alligator.

3. As other posters have noted, make sure that your kid gets plenty of down time/sleep time. We tried hard to keep to a schedule while we were at Disney, but she's still spent the last three days since we got home sleeping way more than normal.

4. If you're working on potty training, this trip could be a big help. Our first night, we took DD to the toy store at DTD and told her that she could pick out any toy she wanted at the end of the week if she didn't use diapers all week. To our amazement, it worked! She started the week kinda sorta trained (dry during the day, but still insisting on using diapers for #2), but by the time we left, we hadn't needed to use a single one of the diapers we brought, and she's kept it up now that we're home. And all it cost us was an $18 make-your-own My Little Pony set.

5. This is similar to point 2, but make sure to build some time into your schedule for spontaneous fun. The hour we spent in Mickey's Toontown letting DD just run around the little playground they have there was one of our nicest memories of the trip. She just had such a good time being a kid without having to rush from one thing to the next.

Good luck, and have a wonderful trip!

DisneyTiger
09-15-2008, 09:57 PM
I too will be going to WDW with my DD3 in, drum roll please, 11 DAYS!!! WOO HOO!:cool1: :cool1: :cool1: I am loving all of these tips. I have been planning this trip for over a year now and have tried my hardest to think of everything. It's so overwhelming because I want it to be perfect. I joke and tell people that I am planning this trip like I planned my wedding, and that's really no joke. So here are some of the tips that I have gathered over the last year:

- bring sticky notes to put over the flushing sensors on the toilets. Nothing scares a potty training toddler back into diapers than almost getting sucked down the toilet
- Get dog tags made with your contact info and attach them to their shoe laces or ID bracelets from Shanrene http://www.shanrene.com/page/001/PROD/mlb-wristbands/WBMBNYSET05. I did both because I am terrified of losing my chldren. I'm paranoid.
- bring dollar store toys for them to play with on the plane or in lines at the parks.
- bring your own glow sticks, glow bracelets...because they cost a fortune in the parks. They also come in handy on the dark rides if your child suddenly becomes afraid.
-pack outfits in ziplock bags. That way, you can get dressed quicker in the morning and also throw an extra outfit in your bag. If you child gets wet (ie: playing in the fountains around the park) you have a change of clothes for them and a ziplock to put the wet ones in!
-Baby Care Centers at the parks have toddler sized toilets, perfect for potty trainers
-bring a washcloth in a ziplock. Easy way to refresh hot kids.
- think about shipping a care package ahead to your resort. I am doing this. I will be sending diapers, water, snacks, wine, coffee...Things that will just take up too much room in my checked luggage and that I will not be bringing back home with me.

I have tons of other tips accumulated in a word document of random things but these are my top favs. Hope this helps! I will be posting a trip report when we get back if you want to see how it goes with a 3 year old. We will also be traveling with my DS18months. My DD3 will be turning 3 while we're there. I CAN'T WAIT:banana: :banana:

blaseckie
09-16-2008, 08:54 AM
Great tips from everyone! My daughter is potty trained so we don't have to worry about that thank goodness. She is afraid of self-flushing toilets though so the stickies may come in handy. I'm sure that she will be afraid of the "dark rides". We've been going to You-tube to watch peoples home videos of the rides so I can give her an idea of what they're like. She won't even watch pirates or the haunted mansion.

Does anyone know about the lineup for parents so they can take turns going on the ride while the other parent watches the toddler? Is it a separate line up or do you line up in the regular one?

JWollman
09-16-2008, 11:10 AM
My son was 2 last year, and the playground in MK were a HUGE HIT! The Pooh one and the Toon town one were great. He played there and then napped after that- in the park .. in his umbrella stroller :goodvibes

The single rider line worked out great for us, there were normally signs that we followed.

As for tips, last year we did go back almost every day for lunch and nap, sometimes he would not nap and we would just go back out, sometimes he did. We drive from New England, so if we have to get him to nap we would just go in the car to DTD or maybe the outlets off International Drive.

He LOVED the parades... and any of the little side shows that are going on. The Pirate show, the Toy Story show.. all of those were great and held his attention. This year I am sure he will love them as well.
I have also heard alot about Tom Sawyer Island and hope to get him there as well.

Enjoy your trip!

DisneyTiger
09-16-2008, 01:24 PM
I've heard that each ride is different and some don't do it. You just have to ask the CM at the front of the line for "parent swap". I think that some of them give you a fast past type ticket. Not really sure. We will find out soon enough and will let everyone know exactly how it works!

Aristomommy
09-16-2008, 08:19 PM
We will be travelling from November 22 to 29. It's looking so far like we'll stay at the Port Orleans French Quarter or Riverside. That seems to be the most popular consensus so far for toddlers. It's just the 3 of us. We're also wondering about the dining plan and if it's worth it or not. Princesses are her main interest but she is quite brave and we'll probably manage to get her on a couple small roller coasters. Ariel is her favorite.

Your dates will give you a mix of crowds. The first part is likely to be more manageable, but then the Thanksgiving holiday crowds will come and it'll be busier. You will be able to see all the holiday lights and events which will be really special. The dining plan is great, if you plan on eating at a sit down restaurant every night anyway. This way you will save some money. But if you prefer not to have a sit down meal every night and make ADRs (which may tie you down a bit) it may be better to make a few ADRs and then eat counter service meals rest of the time.

You can see park maps and attraction lists online to get an idea which ones would interest you and your family.

blaseckie
09-17-2008, 09:34 AM
Yes, we just realized that it was Thanksgiving just recently. Oh well, not much we can do about that as we are booked for a cruise the week before Disney. Is the dining plan still worth it if you don't do sit down meals every day? I know with us our daughter is too grumpy in restaurants sometimes if she's tired to make a sit down meal very enjoyable. My husband read somewhere that you can swap a sit down meal for a quick service and a snack. Is this true? At $45 a day for adults and $12 a day for toddlers isn't $102 a day for meals a little steep?

Thanks for all your great responses! This is helping us alot.