Friday, February 25, 2011

Disney Organization

I realize that anyone who lives in Southern California thinks I'm crazy for dedicating so much time to getting ready for our trip. But if we are spending a lot of money and driving 10 hours (kill me now), I want to make sure that there are as few mishaps/bumps as possible.

That said, I am probably ridiculously overprepared, but....have you met my mother? That was a trait I am not sure I could have escaped. (That's a good thing mom).

Just in case you are like me, here are a couple more things I've put together in order to be VERY ready

  1. Disneyland Binder
    I've kind of been a space cadet lately. Possibly it's due to the fact that I'm a frazzled mother of two preschoolers, but I like to think it's not something I'll be living with permanently. I really don't want to be hunting around in the bottom of my purse for our Disney tickets or "that coupon I just know I printed off!", so I created THE binder. It houses our tickets, our written meal plan (yes, we have one of those), any coupons that coincide with the restaurants we will be eating at, menus of said restaurants, Jakson's diagnosis paperwork (for Guest Relations), hotel reservations, etc. All in one organized, hole punched place. A little work up front to gather everything, a lot less stress in the end.

  2. Written Menu Plan
    This really might sound insane, but I know exactly where we are going to be eating, what coupons we will use, and how much each meal will cost for the entire time we are at Disneyland. This helps us stay within the budget we've planned for ourselves and take advantage of any deals that might be out there. Once we get to the parks, I will no longer have access to a printer, so coupons need to printed and filed away before the trip.

  3. Tuesday:
    Lunch: Chipotle ($9)-B1G1 Free coupon
    Dinner-Subway ($5) buy one get one free Subway coupon
    Kids-Easy Mac in the room (with hot water from the coffee maker!)

    Breakfast-Mimi's Cafe (~ $16)-Mimi's eClub B1G1 Free
    Lunch: snacks brought from home
    Dinner: House of Blues-($20) code DINE to get $25 voucher for $2 (must spend $35 to use)

    Breakfast: (FREE) oatmeal in room (with water warmed up in the coffee maker!!)
    Lunch: ($10) snacks in park (maybe Bengal BBQ)
    Dinner: ($15) Buca di Beppo takeout and eating in room (kids eating Easy Mac or sharing with adults)-$10 off $20 coupon

    Breakfast: Minnie Mouse character breakfast (at 9:10)
    Lunch: snacks from home
    Dinner: Olive Garden ($10)-we have a gift cardTuesday:
    Lunch: Chipotle ($9)-B1G1 Free coupon
    Dinner-Subway ($5) buy one get one free Subway coupon
    Kids-Easy Mac in the room (with hot water from the coffee maker!)

  4. Big Basket of Stuff
    I've been collecting odds and ends all week that need to go to Disneyland. Things like Fruit by the Foot, autograph books, little Disney related art projects from the Dollar Store for downtime (or restaurants), a flashlight/glow bracelets for the dark and scary rides, just random crap that I suddenly remember we need (I cannot let those thoughts slip away. I just know if I do, they will come back to haunt me half way to Anaheim) all goes in the basket. Then when we are ready to go, the basket gets loaded into the back of the car and I don't forget any of those little things in the rush. And the basket comes in handy for dirty laundry in the hotel (it's collapsible, not hard side plastic, just in case you need to picture this in your head).

  5. Emergency Tags
    Not really organization related, but they do bring me comfort. For Family Home Evening this week, we discussed with the kids what they should do if they get lost or separated from us in the parks (heaven forbid). They then decorated these little tags with Disney stickers and such. I "laminated" them with packing tape, punched a hole in the top, and took apart old airline tags from our luggage to get the elastic ties. The kids will each wear one on his/her belt loop. We taught them to find an adult and say "I'm lost" and show the adult their tag. Our cell phone numbers are included, but I don't like talking on the phone, so cropped them out for the photo.

If you want to see everything I've written about Disney, just go here.


Valerie said...

I am not the most organized person in the world-probably because I leave everything to the last minute. If I took time to get things together bit by bit like this, life would be a lot easier! Have a blast!

Lori said...

I thought I was organized, but NO, you are organized!! I bet all these things make you guys have a wonderful, meltdown free trip!

Anne said...

Wonderful job! I am impressed. But that's what it takes (stress before hand) to avoid it during.

Cerise said...

Love this! I already started a binder of stuff to do for our next vacation. Need to start a basket too. I already have a list going of all the things we have to take.
Love the tags you made for the kids. What a wonderful idea!

Beth Ann said...

Its always nice to know that there are others like me. I l.o.v.e. organized binders.

Laura said...

I just found your blog via Pinterest and I just wanted to say, you're my hero. :)
Seriously, this is awesome. It just makes me happy.

Laura said...

I just found your blog via Pinterest and I just wanted to say, you're my hero. :)
Seriously, this is awesome. It just makes me happy.

Kasey said...

Oh how I wish I had found your blog before my Disney trip last November! I don't know why the thought never occured to me to make tags for my kids with our information on them incase they got lost. I did talk to my kids about what to do if it happened and I am so glad I did. At one point my son who had just turned five kept walking after our group had stopped. I was almost in hysterics looking for him, and he was sobbing but fortunately he did what we had talked about and found an employee and waited for us. The tag is a great idea for young kids.

Sarah said...

This is a thing of beauty. Seriously. My husband thinks I'm nuts for planning like a "crazy person," but now he'll see. Oh yes. NOW he will see.

We're traveling with our four kids (7, 5, 2, and 2). I'm with you...I don't want to be searching for something while everyone squirms and screeches in the sun. I want to *know* where it is and exactly what my confirmation number is and yes-I-have-their-birth-certificates-right-here-thankyouverymuch. He'll thank me come October. BOOM.

hauffamily said...

I LOVE! the emergency tags! I don't want the kids names on the tags (cause I'm weird like that having someone see it and call their name out like they know them) but I love the idea and am going to make something like this but put the info on the inside of the card! Thank you for the idea! Ours kids are 5 and 8 but getting lost is scary and their minds go blank even tho our numbers have been drilled in their heads a million times! I LOVE LOVE LOVE this idea! Thank less thing to worry about!

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