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Old 12-04-2012, 04:15 PM   #1
Sarah_Rose
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Anyone do WDW with toddlers/babies without a stroller?

Can anyone share their experience of doing WDW stroller-less?

We have a 2.5 year old and a baby who will be almost 9 months old when we go, and my husband is determined that we do not need a stroller. I am kind of skeptical. I'm a big babywearing advocate and I own a lot of carriers - I have several woven wraps (my favorite type of carrier!), a Kinderpack, a toddler-sized Tula, an Ergo, and I made a Minnie Mouse mei tai for my daughter, and am working on a Nemo one for my son. I know babywearing, and I have a lot of experience with it. But I still think my husband is crazy.

My 2.5 year old son HATES strollers, and he will kick and scream if I try to force him into one. I imagine that if he is tired enough, he will probably sit in one with less of a struggle, but he will WALK for hours (until he is exhausted) and still refuse the stroller. My baby girl loves to be worn in a carrier or wrap, and is happiest in one. She would end up in a carrier most of the trip anyway, whether we bring a stroller or not. However, I am wondering how to manage two young kids, and all our gear, without a stroller at all. Heck, I even brought one to the zoo yesterday, fully knowing that neither kid would use it at all, just to cart all of our junk around in. My husband thinks it's stupid to bring a stroller around just to carry our backpack, but I have no idea what to do with that backpack, if we both have kids on our backs! Minimizing the crap that we carry around isn't really an option, as we'll have diapers (and everything that goes with diapers), baby food, sippy cups, snacks, extra layers, etc.

Anyone do Disney with young kids, without a stroller? Have any strategies for making it work? I keep thinking of how lovely it would be to board the buses and breeze through the crowds, without lugging a stroller around, but I just can't quite figure out the logistics.
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Old 12-04-2012, 04:31 PM   #2
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We took DD to Disney in September. She was a little over 2.5 years and she walked every day. We did get a stroller the last day because she started to feel under the weather and had a full blown cold by time we got home. But she is used to walking and prefers it so I saw no reason to drag around a stroller just in case. We rested when she needed it.
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Old 12-04-2012, 04:40 PM   #3
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We had no intention of using our stroller when we went in October because I babywear and DD walks. We lasted 1 day. But we didn't use the stroller the whole time. A lot of time, we parked it somewhere and left it for a few hours. DH didn't want to wear the backpack the whole time and liked being able to put it in the stroller a bit when we used it. DD napped a few times in the stroller and it helped cool both her and I off because even with the coolest carrier/sling, it still can be hot to BW.

That being said when we go to the zoo, we never bring a stroller or if we do, DD NEVER sits in it because she's being worn or walking. That's why we thought we'd be fine without the stroller at Disney. But we were wrong.

We never took one to any of our dinner reservations though unless it was in the park. If it was at a resort, we just left the stroller in our room. Didn't bring one to DtD. Its nice to have one just in case.

P.S. When did you start using your kinderpack? how big was your son? None of the BWing groups by me have one in their lending library so I have yet to try one with my daughter.

ETA: DD was 11.5 months in October
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Old 12-04-2012, 05:09 PM   #4
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If your toddler isn't into a stroller then I wouldn't expect being at disney will change that. Does your husband baby wear? If not, it'll be quite hard IMO to wear both at the same time.....however I do know it can be done. I wear my baby everywhere, so I know how much easier it is to not have a stroller but having to wear 2 kids (if your hubby doesn't) would be much harder I think. I have a friend who wears her toddler on her back and her baby on the front and it makes my jaw drop everytime, lol. Good luck!
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Old 12-04-2012, 05:35 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RachaelA View Post
We had no intention of using our stroller when we went in October because I babywear and DD walks. We lasted 1 day. But we didn't use the stroller the whole time. A lot of time, we parked it somewhere and left it for a few hours. DH didn't want to wear the backpack the whole time and liked being able to put it in the stroller a bit when we used it. DD napped a few times in the stroller and it helped cool both her and I off because even with the coolest carrier/sling, it still can be hot to BW.

That being said when we go to the zoo, we never bring a stroller or if we do, DD NEVER sits in it because she's being worn or walking. That's why we thought we'd be fine without the stroller at Disney. But we were wrong.

We never took one to any of our dinner reservations though unless it was in the park. If it was at a resort, we just left the stroller in our room. Didn't bring one to DtD. Its nice to have one just in case.

P.S. When did you start using your kinderpack? how big was your son? None of the BWing groups by me have one in their lending library so I have yet to try one with my daughter.

ETA: DD was 11.5 months in October
Thanks for sharing your experience! I'm kind of the mind that it's at least worth bringing a stroller (I'm thinking our Maclaren umbrella stroller, because it folds up nice and small and light and won't take up much room if it's shoved off in a corner all week!), even if we don't use it. My husband insists that it's not worth hauling around the airport and through security, etc, if we won't use it.

We have a standard Kinderpack and it is FABULOUS! We got it when my son was 18 months old, but my daughter almost fits into it now, at 6 months - the seat is still a bit wide for her, but she's almost there. My son still fits into it at 2.5 (he is 28 lbs and wears 2T clothing)..... he could be in a toddler sized one, obviously, but he still has a good seat in the standard. I highly recommend the Kinderpack - it's so comfortable!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetMissy View Post
If your toddler isn't into a stroller then I wouldn't expect being at disney will change that. Does your husband baby wear? If not, it'll be quite hard IMO to wear both at the same time.....however I do know it can be done. I wear my baby everywhere, so I know how much easier it is to not have a stroller but having to wear 2 kids (if your hubby doesn't) would be much harder I think. I have a friend who wears her toddler on her back and her baby on the front and it makes my jaw drop everytime, lol. Good luck!
Haha, my husband is DEFINITELY not off the hook for babywearing for this trip! The deal is that I wear DD and he wears the backpack.... unless, he's wearing DS, and then I can put DD on my front and the backpack on my back. I did the baby on my front and toddler on my back ONCE, for 5 minutes, for a photo, and that was enough for me!
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Old 12-04-2012, 09:36 PM   #6
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We have done it several times without a stroller. It is great! It is so nice to not have to fight with the stroller. So nice! We rarely use one at home either. At WDW though we have always had an adult to wear each kid (as needed) and one to carry the backpack. If you are used to babywearing and not using a stroller I would say go for it! My only concern in your case is that you might end up wearing a baby and a backpack. Much like wearing two kids, I find that wears me out much quicker than just wearing one kid. I think it still depends on your planned park schedule though. If you aren't going to be out late and think your two year old will walk a lot, I'd go without the stroller. You can always rent a stroller there if you need one. Maybe take the contact info for a couple of off site stroller rental places with you just in case.

We love our kinderpacks too!
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:09 AM   #7
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I would say bring the stroller for your "stuff"! We brought two strollers--one for our 2 year old and one for our 9 week old. I carried her in the Ergo about 90% of the time. It was good to put her down when we did the parent swap rather than try to put the Ergo on my husband. (we did that too, but she just screamed...he wasn't as padded as me and smelled funny, LOL)

Bring it and you won't be sorry, even just to wheel around diapers, jackets, snacks, sippies, etc....
Have a great time!
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Old 12-05-2012, 01:14 PM   #8
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No way would I go without a stroller with kids that young. We have one 2.5 that doesn't really care for her stroller, but it was nice to have it at night. Plus, she would nap in the stroller. She would fight me on getting in it, but once she was there she would settle down in a few min.
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Old 12-05-2012, 02:45 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erin327 View Post
We have done it several times without a stroller. It is great! It is so nice to not have to fight with the stroller. So nice! We rarely use one at home either. At WDW though we have always had an adult to wear each kid (as needed) and one to carry the backpack. If you are used to babywearing and not using a stroller I would say go for it! My only concern in your case is that you might end up wearing a baby and a backpack. Much like wearing two kids, I find that wears me out much quicker than just wearing one kid. I think it still depends on your planned park schedule though. If you aren't going to be out late and think your two year old will walk a lot, I'd go without the stroller. You can always rent a stroller there if you need one. Maybe take the contact info for a couple of off site stroller rental places with you just in case.

We love our kinderpacks too!
I do really like the idea of going stroller-less, trying it the first day.... and if it's a disaster, we call a stroller rental place. Yeah, I would just go stroller-less, if it wasn't for that darn bag! I'm trying to figure out how I can do it with just one cross-body bag.... but I'm also going to want to carry my DSLR, so that'll make it tough. And then there's also the hassle of carrying the toddler Tula when my son is walking.... Ugh. lol

Quote:
Originally Posted by Juniortrooper View Post
I would say bring the stroller for your "stuff"! We brought two strollers--one for our 2 year old and one for our 9 week old. I carried her in the Ergo about 90% of the time. It was good to put her down when we did the parent swap rather than try to put the Ergo on my husband. (we did that too, but she just screamed...he wasn't as padded as me and smelled funny, LOL)

Bring it and you won't be sorry, even just to wheel around diapers, jackets, snacks, sippies, etc....
Have a great time!
That also isn't a bad idea. We can just carry it folded on to the bus in the morning, set it up once we're at the parks, and wheel it to a convienient stroller parking area and leave it there for a few hours at a time, filled with coats, snacks, diapers, sippies, etc. It's like a portable locker.

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Originally Posted by Crystal824 View Post
No way would I go without a stroller with kids that young. We have one 2.5 that doesn't really care for her stroller, but it was nice to have it at night. Plus, she would nap in the stroller. She would fight me on getting in it, but once she was there she would settle down in a few min.
If I knew my kid would throw a few minutes of protest tantrum, and then settle down in the stroller and take a nap, it wouldn't even be an issue. That is not my kid. He will scream and kick and arch his back as I'm forcefully buckling him into the stroller, and then he will continue to scream and try to escape for awhile, before degenerating into wailing "I get down.... please??!!" for the rest of the time he is confined. I have not done a multi-day trip since he was a lot younger (we did Disneyland at 15 months, and he would stay in the stroller pretty well at that age, as long as he had a snack to eat.... still didn't fall asleep in the stroller once during that trip, though) so I don't know how this might change once he is totally exhausted after a few days of touring.... there is a chance he will tolerate the stroller once he is worn down.... but I know he will also happily ride (and even nap occasionally!) in a carrier, with no struggling or screaming involved. I would rather do it that way. It might be nice to have a stroller to carry our junk in, or to put down the baby while she eats a snack, but I don't see there being any afternoon stroller naps.

Cards on the table, my 6 month old has NEVER been in a stroller. I had such a bad experience with strollers and my son, when he was a baby, that I've never really tried it with her. I have a Britax B-Ready stoller with a second seat and the bassinet attachment, but I tried to put my daughter in the bassinet a few times when she was a newborn, but I picked her up immediately when she started to scream as soon as I put her in. I really should be listing that darn giant expensive stroller on CL, shouldn't I? Now that my daughter is old enough that I'm sure she'd be fine in a stroller with a toy to play with, I've just gotten used to the convienience of not using it, and I enjoy having her up at face level when we go places like the zoo.
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Old 12-05-2012, 03:13 PM   #10
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OMG, I've now swung so far to the other side on my internal stroller debate.

I now believe we should bring our Baby Jogger Summit XC jogger, and get the glider board for the back of it. Then not only can I push around a stroller filled with snacks and diapers, but my toddler can stand on the back of it when he gets tired but is going to be up and down. Now I have to try to convince my "NO STROLLERS!" husband on that one...

I have 2 more months (exactly!) before we leave. I'm going to be a basket case double-thinking my minute decisions, right up until the moment we leave. But isn't that what the DIS is for???
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Old 12-05-2012, 03:36 PM   #11
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Not to sound opinionated, but bring a stroller!! We have an umbrella stroller and it was perfect when DS was 1, 3, and yes, 4. He'll be 5.5 on our next trip, and all of us will be sad to leave it at home!! It carries ALL your stuff!! I may just stick a doll in it and bring it anyway! lol

The one serious tip that is really important: if by the off chance, both kids fall asleep in the stroller, AND you have your own stroller, you can leave the park/stay in the park, whatever you and DH want to do!! Picture yourselves in EP, finding a bench that overlooks the water, while sipping your favorite adult beverage, all while your little ones are off in sleepy land. If that doesn't help convince DH, nothing will!! Good luck!!
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:50 PM   #12
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My husband is not wanting us to take a stroller (5, 5 and 3 yr old) but I want it to keep up the pace if we need to make a timed event like our character meal. Carry all our stuff. Ours is a double umbrella like those cheaper ones but double. Like others mentioned we could just leaving it parked somewhere if need be.

I think for your youngest I'd like it to change diapers. Sometimes easier than going into the washrooms and a pinned up blanket would help for nap times for the little one. (maybe)

I think I would also want it to carry all the STUFF. Even 3 water bottles when added to everything else gets heavy.

Sometimes kids do change even in 6 months, he might now be able to bargain more and you can say if you sit in the stroller we will go to see "Mickey" next and we can get there faster. Doing this early on before he "hits the wall" of exhaustion might be best. Just short 5 min trip in the stroller to the next event might let him see that the stroller isn't so bad. Also giving them food while they are in there might help too.
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Old 12-06-2012, 05:53 PM   #13
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My husband is not wanting us to take a stroller (5, 5 and 3 yr old) but I want it to keep up the pace if we need to make a timed event like our character meal. Carry all our stuff. Ours is a double umbrella like those cheaper ones but double. Like others mentioned we could just leaving it parked somewhere if need be.

I think for your youngest I'd like it to change diapers. Sometimes easier than going into the washrooms and a pinned up blanket would help for nap times for the little one. (maybe)

I think I would also want it to carry all the STUFF. Even 3 water bottles when added to everything else gets heavy.

Sometimes kids do change even in 6 months, he might now be able to bargain more and you can say if you sit in the stroller we will go to see "Mickey" next and we can get there faster. Doing this early on before he "hits the wall" of exhaustion might be best. Just short 5 min trip in the stroller to the next event might let him see that the stroller isn't so bad. Also giving them food while they are in there might help too.
We did this with our daugther alot. She is 2 and a half and thinks she has outgrown strollers. I would say if you get in the stroller, you can have a sucker or we will go ride Small World, etc. It worked for her. Alot of the time she would fall asleep after eating her sucker (I brought some dum dums with us) or on teh way to the ride.
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:14 PM   #14
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NO WAY. Bring a stroller. I babywore too, but it's imperative you have the option to use both. Sometimes carrying is better, sometimes stroller.

Think of it this way. Do you typically walk 12+ miles a day with your child on your back? For several days in a row? You will get tired.

Bring the stroller, you can leave it somewhere for a few hours and come back when you need it.
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Old 12-06-2012, 07:15 PM   #15
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I would bring a stroller - sounds like you have the perfect lightweight umbrella already - most arlines let you check them at no charge so you don't have to deal with it at the airport.

You can use it for an already sleeping child - maybe the baby?, to store your stuff, a seat for parades for the 2yo (I woudn't bother buckling in this case as the stroller will be parked). You don't have to force him in it of course but just let him know it is available if he needs/wants to get a ride now and then,he could then have a snack or a drink while your walking.

I like your idea of the rider board - my older dd hated the stroller but did love riding on the back (we had a sit and stand) and my younger dd actually liked the stroller. She liked to have a break and some "space" for herself now & then.

Have fun !!
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