BEST way to SURPRISE your KIDS!??

Discussion in 'Welcome to the DIS' started by sbhammonds, Apr 4, 2013.

  1. JWS7962

    JWS7962 Earning My Ears

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    For starters, my wife and I decided to DOUBLE our time at WDW in 2015. We agreed that in spite of the trip being costly, we needed more kid time in each park. We recently returned from WDW and felt like we ran through each park trying to maximize our perks yet missing MOST of the Disney Secrets our books mentioned.

    Embroidered matching shirts to be nerdy. I'll think up some other goodies but our daughters are getting older and it's becoming a chore to keep the magic alive regarding the truth behind the characters.
     
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  3. SpringBreak

    SpringBreak Earning My Ears

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    Word of warning! I once orchestrated a surprise trip for my kindergartener. I was a single mom at the time. I pulled my son out of bed early in the morning and didn't do the big reveal until we were at the airport. He seemed happy, but unsure. While we did have a good time on the trip, it was marred by by son's pervasive uneasiness. :sad: He kept wondering what was going on at school (I had pulled him out in September) and repeatedly asked why Grammy (my Mom) hadn't come with us. He worried about our dog. He seemed *very* happy to go home. (Not my intended/desired reaction). :confused3

    I learned quite a lot from this. Children, even small ones, have routines and obligations. Maybe your young child will worry about missed schoolwork, soccer practice, or just want to clear something up with a friend on the playground before leaving.

    Your child may feel more in control if he/she can pack his/her own special belongings and say goodbye to family and classmates. Older children can read about the parks and help plan the trip tailored to their quirky interests. What they want to do/skip may surprise you.

    Finally, there is the power of anticipation! Christmas morning is special in part because of the build-up (decorating, carols, baking, cards, etc.) We count down to it, plan for it. I don't know if it would be as cool if a bunch of presents just arrived unexpectedly in the middle of May.

    So while, I think it's a fab idea to surprise kids creatively, I think it's best done a month before the the trip. Long enough to prepare and build anticipation, but short enough, that it's not unbearably long.:mic:
     
  4. momimouse27

    momimouse27 Just a Big Kid!

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    I don't completely disagree with the above post. What I would say is to take into consideration your child's personality. Some kids would be better served being surprised early if they fret about things easily or feel more in control if they pack their own bag.

    With my son, who has autism, he loves to be surprised, which really goes against the norm. Most of those kids get upset at changing the routine, but mine is fine with it. I'd say the same about my middle daughter, but my oldest would want to know first.

    My son knows we're taking a trip, but he thinks we leave on Monday and not on this Thursday :) I can't wait to surprise him!
     
  5. SpringBreak

    SpringBreak Earning My Ears

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    I agree. The child's personality is key.

    And to say it again --you can surprise any kid. But**some** kids may prefer the surprise a couple weeks before the trip--that is--NOT at the airport.
     
  6. KCrystal

    KCrystal Earning My Ears

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    We are going for spring break in April but it also just so happens ;) that DD's 9th birthday falls during this week. So it's a spring break/birthday trip for her. DS (5) and DD (3) already know but they aren't talking because it's sissy's birthday surprise :) Anywho, we are having a personalized Minnie mouse ears headband made for her as well as a shirt that says "I'm spending my birthday with Minnie!" They will be wrapped up in a box that's inside another wrapped box with a riddle in it that I came up with. She's a pretty smart kid so it shouldn't take her long to figure out the riddle and once she opens the other box she will really get it! We are giving it to her in the next few weeks because she's one of those kids that doesn't like to have her routine interrupted and needs to pack and plan well in advance (she must get that from me since I've been planning for months). I can't wait to see the look on her face! This will be my 1st trip since I was 5, DH's 1st trip since high school (forever ago :rotfl2:) DD8's 2nd trip (she went with her grandparents 3 or 4 years ago) and the little two's 1st trip. :woohoo:
     
  7. turning into fanatic

    turning into fanatic Earning My Ears

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    We are taking our 2nd trip 2 weeks from today. The first trip a year and a half ago the kids knew about a year in advance(they were all in my brother in laws wedding at WDW). We keep telling them we will go back for my sons graduation in 10 years, but secretly we've had another trip planned for almost the last year. We are doing the big reveal on Thanksgiving, 2 days before we leave. Let me preface this by saying, if you haven't seen the youtube video of Lily getting surprised with a trip to Disneyworld, you should check it out, so cute! My kids love it. Lily gets a bag full of disney goodies from her mom and her mom asks where she would want to go with all of it. So on Thanksgiving I am going to have a small treasure hunt for the kids, non disney clues leading them around the house. They are going to end up downstairs where all my extended family will be sitting. I am going to hand them each a disney tote bag full of disney goodies(gift cards, their ears, coloring books, t-shirts, maps, etc) and as they start going through them, ask them if there is anywhere they could go with this stuff... They will probably already have caught on by the time I get to asking! I'm not sure if I'm more excited to go back or to see their reaction!!
     
  8. DVCGail

    DVCGail David's Vacation Club Rentals Approved Advertiser

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    Great stories. I'm planning a surprise for my significant other for Xmas. The box is already wrapped with seven different little boxes inside that all contain "Disney" trinkets. The bottom box has our vacation details inside. Its been a hard secret to keep but only 35 more days. HOHOHO
     
  9. JDis1015

    JDis1015 Earning My Ears

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    I know the feeling! It's so difficult to keep this secret!
     
  10. KaLyn

    KaLyn DIS Veteran

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    A Christmas reveal, nice! We are waiting until Easter Sunday because I cant stand to hear "How many more days?" over and over for months on end. 151 days until the reveal and 165 until we leave!
     
  11. DVCGail

    DVCGail David's Vacation Club Rentals Approved Advertiser

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    great ideas! I will keep them in mind for our families next trip!!!!
     
  12. BijouBabe

    BijouBabe Mouseketeer

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    My son thinks we're going to visit my sister and her family. He is excited at the thought of going on his first plane ride. I told him that he would be missing school, but he is fine with that (he's always jealous when all his friends get to miss school and go on vacations). The plan is to tell him on the first half of our flight. My friend is going to tape his reaction. I have created a booklet about our "adventure" and pointing out some of the sights in the city where my sister lives, but then the next couple pages will have something to do with California or Disneyland and how it would be way better to be there. At the end of the booklet is a picture of Mickey and friends and it says "Surprise, We're going to Disneyland". Then I'm going to give him a bag full of Disney goodies I bought to act as a "survival" kit for on the way there and when we're in the parks. I can't tell him beforehand or all I'll hear is "I can't wait any longer, I don't think I can make it".
     
  13. VisualArt

    VisualArt Earning My Ears

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    we usually just put them in the car and drive to the airport without telling them where we are going. the bags are in the car already. They get it when we pull into the airport....
     
  14. mindygirl5238

    mindygirl5238 Mouseketeer

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    We are planning on leaving around their bed time and making the 8 hour drive. By the time our then 6 year old starts to wonder where we're headed at 8:00 at night, she'll be knocked out in the backseat. Thankfully both of our DDs sleep like rocks in the car. So in my dream world, we get checked in and everything, and they wake up at AKL completely confused. So I grab my camera off the night stand and capture the next Disney commercial. Plan B is I'm going to have my camera ready to go the second we get off the exit for AKL. In reality, if we make it through Georgia without telling them, I'll be happy. I think we can pull it off though. Like I said, my kids are pretty sound sleepers.
     
  15. wahmtexas

    wahmtexas Mouseketeer

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    Starting to get really excited this is not our first trip but it is our first Surprise trip... dec 17 wAke kids up for "school" tell them to go downstairs something is on the xmas tree for them..I used white paint pen and wrote surprise Disney trip and the date on a huge red glitter oversized ornament ball it will be hanging from the tree with Mickey bags under tree containing Im going to Disney shirts for the plane then we head for the airport!
     
  16. KaLyn

    KaLyn DIS Veteran

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    Love this idea!!!!
     
  17. kimj88

    kimj88 Mouseketeer

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    We are leaving on my birthday (1/23) and will be there for DS9's birthday as well (1/29). Both DS9 and DS4 have NEVER been to Disney. We are telling them about a week or so ahead that Dad has to travel for work. We have super early flight and will say that we are getting up to take Dad to the airport before school that day. However, we will have all secretly packed. There will be two big boxes wrapped and we will say Dad feels bad that he will be away for your birthday so he got you a gift. In the boxes will be their favorite Disney character large plush. Each plush will be wearing a tshirt that will say each boy's name and 'Is going to disney'. I will tape a paper to the back of the shirt that will say 'Right now!'. I cannot wait and tear up every time I picture it!!!!
     
  18. kimj88

    kimj88 Mouseketeer

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    Very cool idea!
     
  19. Canooknic

    Canooknic Mouseketeer

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    Last time (our boy's first trip) I did a treasure hunt around the house with the final clue leading to my closet where they found their Buzz suitcases, plush Mickeys and 'Im going to DisneyWorld' tshirts.
    This time we'll need to leave for the airport at 5am so we're thinking of doing something similar to kimj88. I think we'll wake the boys up and tell them we need to take hubby to the airport and when we get there we'll get their Buzz suitcases out of the trunk. That's my plan right now anyway!!!!
     
  20. Brewersprts

    Brewersprts Mouseketeer

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    We went in January. I grew up in Florida so I have been many times. My first memories are riding the train around MK. The kids (14,9,5) had never been. For Christmas the kids got things they could use on the road trip from Ohio to Florida. We told them we were going to Kennedy Space Center and the beach. Wanted them to get excited about some science things and that. They loved both btw. We stayed offsite so it wasn't difficult to fool them.

    The second day (which happened to be my birthday) we booked a really early character breakfast at Cape May Cafe. The kids fell asleep on the way which was perfect because they didn't see that big welcome to disney world sign when entering WDW. When we woke them up at the yacht club they had no idea they were at Disney world. They didn't know until Donald and crew came out to greet everyone. They still didn't realize they were going to disney world until we boarded the bus and the driver said the next stop was the MK. It was a great way to surprise them.

    We would have went this year but since I completely severed my Achilles and won't be walking very well. We decided to wait. Too bad they quit letting handicapped people go to the front of the line. It would have almost been worth it to have someone pushing me around in a wheelchair all day. Lol

    (Yes that was a joke, I don't condone people taking advantage of the system anywhere, especially Disney World. I feel people taking advantage of the system is exactly why Disney has made some of their not so popular policy changes and why Disney has lost some of its ' magic'
     
  21. Canooknic

    Canooknic Mouseketeer

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    That must have been amazing! They must have been so surprised when the characters came out
     

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