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Old 10-28-2009, 10:41 PM   #1
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How to surprise your kids w/ trip to Disney??

OK... all you Disney crazies... planning to SURPRISE our kids (dd9, dd6, dd3) with a trip to Disney for Spring Break. Anybody got a totally awesome idea of how to break the news?! We'd like to break the news and then hit the road... (this is where we expect the mass hysteria to climax!)

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Old 10-28-2009, 10:53 PM   #2
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We are doing the exact same thing! My kiddos think we are going this summer (our original plan since June 08). We went ahead and booked 3/20-3/27 when the 4/3 deal came out because it saved us so much money, and decided to keep it a secret. We will be driving down as soon as they get out of school on that Friday afternoon for Spring Break. Our plans are for my mother to pick them up from school as a special "treat". Then we will go pick them up, and break the "terrible" news that our trip this summer isn't going to happen because we are going RIGHT NOW! They will be shocked! I am busting at the seams. DD heard me on the phone yesterday morning making ADRs, and I said, "Isn't it crazy that we have to plan our dinners for this summer right before Halloween?" She totally bought it. This is just crazy fun!
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Old 10-28-2009, 11:10 PM   #3
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We had to get up early for our surprise flight, so we got Disney paint chips from Home Depot that went down the stairs to the luggage, with a note from Mickey to pack any last minute items and head to the airport!

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Old 10-28-2009, 11:19 PM   #4
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We are booked for Feb 6th -13th and our kids don't know. We are planning to tell them on Christmas morning. For Christmas they get gifts that are just for them but, they also get a big gift to share, one year it was the Wii, last year it was a new computer with a printer. I was thinking about wrapping a big box and putting the vacation info at the bottom with some Mickey confetti and other vacation items (new beach towels, small things for the car ride, autograph books etc.). I am also planning to fill the box with balloons before I close it so when they open the box the balloons float up out of the box.
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Old 10-29-2009, 06:46 AM   #5
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we are also surprising our girls, it is their "big" Christmas present too and we leave on Dec 26th. I plan on wrapping their pin lanyards and pinning a note to them that says Surprise we are going to Disney World Tomorrow!
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Old 10-29-2009, 06:59 AM   #6
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that paint chip down the stairs idea was WONDERFUL!!! oh man i just got the chills looking at that picture!!!

my first trip to disney (i was 12 or 13) was a surprise! i'll be 30 this year and i still love to think about that great surprise. at the time my parents and i were in CT and i was told that we were going to my grandpa in PA. we were up super early and my parents said they might just go to the airport (LGA) and take a plane there. this didn't seem strange to me b/c my mother had just taken a small plane to her grandfather's funeral a few weeks earlier and i was young enough to not realize that plane rides are expensive!!!

anywho, i was very groggy since it was 5:30 or so in the AM and we were sitting near the airport gates when my mom left to go to the bathroom. when she came back she handed me a little stuffed minnie mouse and said, "surprise! we're going to disney world!" best. thing. ever!!!

the point of sharing is to let you know that your surprise doesn't necessarily have to be all that intricate in order for it to be a wonderful and memorable surprise!!! any bit of a surprise is a HUGE one when it comes to disney!!!
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Old 10-29-2009, 09:08 AM   #7
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Shewench, that is too cute! I'm going to have steal your idea!!! My girls know that we are going to Disney but they don't know when... They've been asking about it constantly and we keep telling them, "we will eventually..."
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Old 10-29-2009, 09:12 AM   #8
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When I took my DD for her 7th birthday, we had her party on Friday night, and were planning on leaving Saturday morning. So I had her cake made with a cute little rhyme I'd made up about that her present was going to DW.
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Old 10-29-2009, 09:13 AM   #9
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Those are all GREAT ideas! (Love the paint chip idea... headed to Home Depot this week!) Thanks for all of your thoughts. We had considered making this a Christmas present, but it will just be so much fun to totally shock their socks off!

MissNurse... we will be there the exact same week! Probably springing this on our kids at the same time. How fun!

I was thinking of getting some personalized mouse ears to have in their carseats as a special surprise when we leave. Anybody know a good place to order?

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Old 10-29-2009, 09:41 AM   #10
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When we went in 2007 we had a huge glass pickle jar with Disney stickers all over it. It was the Disney Fund. The kids could earn money for doing chores, or being super nice to each other, or getting good grades etc. My kids went WAY out of their way to do nice things and to get along with each other to earn more money.

The story was that when the jar was full, we would have enough money to go to Disney. So as the jar got fuller and fuller they knew the trip was getting closer. They could help me plan by looking over maps and watching the planning DVD WITHOUT driving me nuts that we were leaving in 3 months or 6 weeks or two days.

I put them to bed the night of our trip and then I emptied out the pickle jar and put some Disney dollars, our airplane boarding passes and glitter in the jar with glitter trails to their packed suitcases. I woke them in them in the morning and said, "Look guys, Tinkerbell came last night!"

It was a surprise without completely excluding them from the planning. This way they got to watch the demos of the rides and attractions to see what they wanted to ride/see. It wasn't suspicious that mom was making Disney shirts or buying things for the trip when we were at the store. The trip was happening, but they didn't know WHEN.

Hope all of your surprises go well!!!
Me Him DS (9) DD (6)

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Old 10-29-2009, 10:56 AM   #11
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If you are taking a child out of school you have to tell the school so the teacher will send homework, so how can you surprise them? We are going in Jan but have not told my 9 year old grandson. We keep saying maybe not this year because of $$$$$...we go almost every year.My daughter wants to surprise him but I don't know how because of the school thing.I said we should tell him on Sunday as we are leaving Wed. Any great ideas?????
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Old 10-29-2009, 11:15 AM   #12
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We're going on spring break, so avoiding this problem. However, our teachers here would be more than accomodating to help keep things a surprise. Last year our teacher was more of a Disney crazy than WE are... and that's really saying something. Shoot your teacher an email and I bet they will work with you. Good luck!

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Old 10-29-2009, 01:44 PM   #13
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Yep, I emailed the teachers. We are going over Parent-Teacher conference time, so they will only miss 2.5 days of school. So I emailed and asked if they wanted to schedule a conference for another time or not, and to keep mum. We did a treasure hunt to tell the kids last Sunday, at the 10 day mark. DD8 told her teacher Monday and she pretended she didn't already know. DD11 is apparently torturing her teacher a little longer and hasn't let on she knows. Both of them commented that their teachers had been smiling at them a lot.

I didn't want to do the reveal on the day, I thought that would be a little too much shock, plus I wanted them to feel ready with school. AND I wanted help packing and preparing!
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Old 10-29-2009, 02:44 PM   #14
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I'm reading these ideas and getting all excited. I love the paint chip idea and the airport idea from so many years ago.

We are going to surprise our now 4 year old for his birthday. He knows we're going on an "adventure" but no idea what it is. I was thinking about doing a countdown calendar to when we leave but no idea of how to break the final news to him. Ideas? He has never been before and he knows of some of the main characters, kind of knows of Disney World but has no real concept of what it really is. Oh and we have a figurine of Cinderella's Castle from a trip we did in 1996 and he likes to look at that. He knows it's at Disney World. That's about it.
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Old 10-29-2009, 03:08 PM   #15
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We did this for my kids this past May. The night before we left, I planned an elaborate Scavenger hunt through the house and the yard with different "clues", leading to the final clue. We had a giant Mickey Mouse holding a card that read "You're going to Disney... tomorrow!". They were so excited.Only trouble is.... Now my dd asks for scavenger hunts all the time. Have fun
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