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Two year old's first time/tips and tricks

SulleyanBoo

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Good morning all!
I am planning my son's first Disney trip. We are going in October. He will be turning 2 then. I am beyond anxious for this.
I just want to be well prepared. My husband and I have been going just the 2 of us plenty of times before but this will be a totally different experience bringing our little one.

Any tips and/or tricks for taking a 2 year old to Disney?
What do we have to do and what does he have to see? I plan on this trip being about 4 days.

Also, does Disney provide pack n plays for children to sleep? What is the best option for sleeping? Right now and since he was 6 months he has been a great sleeper in his crib. He has taken naps a few times in his pack n play.

Side note: He LOVES Mickey and Minnie Mouse and music especially from Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.

Thanks! :)
 

ItlngrlBella

Well-Known Member
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http://www.cloudspacellc.com/post/86659053354/disney-world-tips-for-fun-with-toddlers-14-must

Naps. I CANNOT stress enough... They are your friends. Do t be afraid to go back to the hotel and get one with your little one. This way they are awake and happy for Wishes.

Also - carrying snacks and water on you at all times prevents meltdowns.

One thing we did: We told the kids if they were good everyday that Tinkerbell would leave them a surprise the next morning. There was a dollar store near our house rental and they had tons of Disney swag - Tinkerbell hooked us up - and kids were extra good. Thank God for Tinkerbell.
 
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CaptainAmerica

Premium Member
Naps. I CANNOT stress enough... They are your friends. Do t be afraid to go back to the hotel and get one with your little one. This way they are awake and happy for Wishes.
I'm going to play devil's advocate on this one. The value of a nap is entirely dependent on the specific child. Some kids just don't nap well and/or need to be in bed early to have a decent morning the next day. If that's the case, don't try and force things that aren't going to be successful in order to see nighttime shows if your kid's personality would be better off just skipping the nighttime show.

Which brings me to my biggest piece of advice. You're not going to do everything and that's okay. Accept it now. My wife and I just got back and we were making a list of all the things we didn't do (even excluding things with height requirements that we knew we'd never get to). Spaceship Earth, American Adventure, Jungle Cruise, Pirates, and on and on including many of our favorites. We weren't bummed out because we know we'll be back. We did things at just the right pace for us and the little one (much smaller than your son, she's only six months but much of the advice still applies).
 

popcenturylover

Well-Known Member
Only you know your child. Some kids sleep well in their strollers(ours did) & some need a bed to nap. Some go to bed early(ours did) some don't. It all depends on your child. Just go at their pace. If staying on property bring an easily foldable lightweight stroller for the busses. My DD & DGS LOVE the Disney Junior show at HS. We also booked lunch at H & V for lunch with the Disney Junior characters. Food isn't all that great but, the interaction was!
 

SAV

Well-Known Member
I would recommend you bring along your own stroller. It is something familiar and comfortable for the child. It is great to have in the airports, parking lots, getting to and from the room/bus if you have a far walk. I would also recommend that the stroller is a sturdy one that has a shade on it, a basket underneath, a tray for them, a tray for you, it reclines and one that isn't too big. They make numerous mid sized ones like this now. My kids both took their naps in the strollers so we didn't have to leave the parks. They both did just fine. Just bring a towel or blanket to drape over the stroller when they are napping.
 

DiSnEyF@n

Well-Known Member
http://www.cloudspacellc.com/post/86659053354/disney-world-tips-for-fun-with-toddlers-14-must

Naps. I CANNOT stress enough... They are your friends. Do t be afraid to go back to the hotel and get one with your little one. This way they are awake and happy for Wishes.

Also - carrying snacks and water on you at all times prevents meltdowns.

One thing we did: We told the kids if they were good everyday that Tinkerbell would leave them a surprise the next morning. There was a dollar store near our house rental and they had tons of Disney swag - Tinkerbell hooked us up - and kids were extra good. Thank God for Tinkerbell.
I absolutely LOVE the Tinkerbell leaving a surprise the next morning idea... What a great idea!!! Thanks for the tip! I love this forum!
 

DiSnEyF@n

Well-Known Member
We went back for the nap. I have to say that I packed A LOT of stuff. My advice is do NOT overpack. I thought way too much into "things" that we MAY need and I over did it. Just be sure to have the essentials. However, I did bring our (small) baby monitors so that we could sit out on the balcony while she napped or slept. You probably won't need them for your 2 year old, but again as I said I thought way too much about things we MIGHT need and I am grateful that I brought it.
We stayed at the Dolphin hotel and the transportation made it very easy to make it back to the hotel by 12-1pm so that she could nap. For a 6 month old (I know she's not 2 lol but I think all this will still apply to you) she slept amazingly. I would highly recommend stopping in at Walmart before check-in or having snacks and beverages delivered to your hotel. Having snacks on hand will definitely make a difference (like PP stated).
One last recommendation is to have a room with some type of balcony so that when your son is napping or sleeping at night and you don't want to sit in a dark room, you can always sit on the balcony. I don't knot what I wouldv'e done without the balcony. We hung out, drank and watched shows on our iPad on the balcony... We watched fireworks (HS Fantasmic was in our view) and at times just enjoyed the view (the Dolphin is amazingly beautiful).
Good luck and if I think of anything else I will post!!!
:)
 

ItlngrlBella

Well-Known Member
I absolutely LOVE the Tinkerbell leaving a surprise the next morning idea... What a great idea!!! Thanks for the tip! I love this forum!
Thanks! She had a letter waiting for us upon arrival explaining everything. The kids ran to see our house's pool and I set it on the table - when they came in I was like.. "What's this?!"

Be careful of you actuall M&G Tinkerbell. Our kids ran up and thanked her for the presents she was leaving them. Tinkerbell looked confused for a split second but caught on. ;)
 

HouCuseChickie

Well-Known Member
My younger daughter was 2 on her first two WDW trips. I can't stress enough that every child is different, but I can share with you what did and didn't work for mine.

- NAPS - mine never were stroller nappers. WDW was just so many noises and stimulation factors that leaving the parks for meaningful quiet nap time at the resort was the only sensible plan for us.
- WORKING NAPS BREAKS TO YOUR ADVANTAGE - We'd nap break from about 2pm to 6pm (or sometimes a little later) every day. Yes, it's a LONG nap, but it helped get her enough rest so she's be good for TS dinners, evening shows/fireworks, and sometimes evening EMH. Yup- there were a few times when she was in the parks until 1am at that age. Plus, but skipping out of the parks midday- you're missing the parks at peak crowd times.
- RECOGNIZE AN APPROACHING MELTDOWN - While we had a couple where I had no choice, but to weather it since nothing was working to calm her down...most were remedied by seeing it coming and changing our situation/location. Mind you, a lot of hers were over sibling jealousy - i.e. she was 2 and her big sis was big enough to do some things she couldn't. Still, if I could get her out of a situation fast enough, I could minimize the meltdown or at least get her away from the crowds to avoid greater over-stimulation (as well as saving others from hearing the meltdown).
- PLAN LITTLE PLEASANT DISTRACTIONS - I liked to plan in little things that were cute or magical, but also were little things I could do to that would capture her attention positively in lines or meals without disrupting others. Sometimes it was little outfit details or park details...and sometimes it was my fave. My fave was "dusting" my girls. I often travel with fine grade cake glitter. I would dust their hair (usually without them knowing) before leaving the room and might use my phone to take a pic of their scalp while in line so they could see that Tink had secretly paid them a visit and sprinkled them in pixie dust.
- CHARACTER MEALS - Every kid responds a bit differently, but we found that by getting in a good character meal in the morning could save us from the whining and begging for M&Gs while in the parks. Just make sure you have plenty of snacks handy b/c the meals distract them so much and they often don't eat as much as they should. I swear, hunger from failing to eat at overstimulating meals is one of the biggest meltdown factors.
- POTTY TIME - My younger one was still in diapers on her first trip as a 2 yr old, but potty trained by her 2nd two year old trip. No real tips here, but just wanted to point out that it doesn't make a real time or packing difference. If he's in diapers, you'll have all the normal diapers and wipes in your bag. If he's potty trained, you'll have so many spare outfits for potential accidents that you need the same amount of bag space. And the amount of time going to the bathroom is about the same.
- STOP AND APPRECIATE THINGS - since you're like not going to be jumping around from Space Mountain in MK and Everest in AK, use it as a time to appreciate the little details.
- STROLLER - On her first trip, we brought our stroller from home. It was a sit n stand...comfy, but nothing too exciting. On or second trip with her as a 2 yr old, we rented a City Mini Double. She was so much more comfortable and it made a HUGE difference in her mood.

As for the crib, we opted for a different route. I'm pretty sure they'll supply a pack and play, but we had them put bed rails on a queen bed instead.

I'm sure there's more...but this is what I can remember :)
 

Glenn2012

New Member
This thread has come in handy to me. We've always been child free when we go to Orlando. We go back out in November next year and we will have a more manageable 7yr old and 2 and a half year old.
 

Disneydreamer23

Well-Known Member
I stayed at CBR so we did naps in the stroller and I made a little cover to go over her to block the sun for when she was sleeping.
- Don't rush
- My dd was 16 months we did every thing she could do and she loved it all
- Try to do a character meal those were awesome with her!
- Bring snacks and Juice boxes I forgot them one day and ended up spending 40.00 on snacks and drinks
- I bought a really nice stroller it was 40.00 called Jeep Cherokee It folded up perfect and fit on the trams etc
- They do provide pack and plays but I SUGGEST you bring your own sheet for it and a blanket to put under the sheet it was very hard compared to the one I have at home.
- Things that were must dos- Dumbo play area in the ride line, MK water area, The kids area in AK (bone yard)
I am going again in September and my dd will be 2 1/2 I truly
believe these are great ages to take kids unlike a lot of other people! Here's some pics of things my daughter loved! Hope it helps!

045.JPG Main Street Parade she was literally Mesmorized
083.JPG
Figment in Epcot, one of her fav rides091.JPG I know you have a boy but Arkushes in Epcot the Princesses are so great and spent alot of time with her! Hey boys can flirt ;)
101.JPG
Safari- AK what child doesn't love animals?111.JPG
Bone Yard AK- Spent a good 5 hours here lol218.JPG
045.JPG 083.JPG 091.JPG 101.JPG 111.JPG Petting Zoo AK Take the Train to get here!
218.JPG

If you have any questions!~ Feel Free to ask~~!
 

buseegal

Active Member
with a toddler going back to the room for naps means some kind of transportation down time to get there. our 17 month old grandson fell asleep on way back to room then would not go back to sleep. screamed for 2 hours that we tried to get him back to sleep. closer to your trip plan some car trips or stroller walks then try to get your child to nap to give you some idea if you can get back to sleep. there is a big difference between just walking to child's room and returning from park even if you drive you have to leave park, get to your transportation and then to your room. a lot of down time for child to fall asleep.
 
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gusgoose

Member
with a toddler going back to the room for naps means some kind of transportation down time to get there. our 17 month old grandson fell asleep on way back to room then would not go back to sleep. screamed for 2 hours that we tried to get him back to sleep. closer to your trip plan some car trips or stroller walks then try to get your child to nap to give you some idea if you can get back to sleep. there is a big difference between just walking to child's room and returning from park even if you drive you have to leave park, get to your transportation and then to your room. a lot of down time for child to fall asleep.
This is why I would actually dissuade you from the afternoon resort nap. Whether you're renting a car or just taking the buses, getting back-and-forth between your hotel and the parks can be an interminable process with a 2-year-old (especially if brought your own stroller).

My son has always been a terrific napper, so your mileage may vary, but my spouse and I let him nap in the stroller every afternoon and that was our brief bit of alone time for the two of us. That was when we took the opportunity to enjoy some wine and stroll around world showcase, or experience some of our favorite rides and shows with our napping son in my lap.

Granted we went during a cooler time of year and, as I stated, our son could nap through almost anything.
 

boilerpicc

Well-Known Member
I have one other must-do to add... the Disney Junior show in DHS. Its a fancy puppet show with Doc, Sofia, Jake, and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. My daughter lost her mind during the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse part. No hot dog song though. That was both disappointing and awesome all at the same time.

Also, Disney does provide pack and plays. One time, we even got a full sized crib at Bay Lake Tower. I don't think that is the norm though.
 

DiSnEyF@n

Well-Known Member
I have one other must-do to add... the Disney Junior show in DHS. Its a fancy puppet show with Doc, Sofia, Jake, and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. My daughter lost her mind during the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse part. No hot dog song though. That was both disappointing and awesome all at the same time.

Also, Disney does provide pack and plays. One time, we even got a full sized crib at Bay Lake Tower. I don't think that is the norm though.
It's funny you mention the no "Hot Dog" song bc when we went last year I was so excited to hear it and sing it with my 6 month old, but it was never sung!!! They should definitely rethink that.
 

BigRedDad

Well-Known Member
All kids are different. You will have to take it in stride. Try to keep to the same schedule you have at home. October can still be hot so make sure you have things to keep cool and keep hydrated. Find places that are in the AC to take naps or to play a little. Don't forget, kids just need their play time too for 10-15 minutes at playgrounds in the park.

MK: Most shops are AC. Tony's restaurant at the front is always good with Lady and the Tramp playing. Also the water play area back in Toon Town or whatever it is called now.

Epcot: Plenty of places up front in Innoventions, exit for Mission Space (also has the big play area)

DHS: Art of Animation is all AC and lots to look at and do. They have kid areas to color in the back as well. Indoor shows as well with the Little Mermaid, Disney Jr.

AK: Fewer places in the AC besides the stores and restaurants. The park is full of shaded areas though.
 

Squigglove

Active Member
Love the advice in this thread!
Taking my son this year, he will turn 2 while there.
We are staying at Port Orleans Riverside and they asked if we wanted a crib or a pack&play.

My son is not even talking yet. He is still in diapers (only uses the potty for difficult poops). He's a difficult napper especially if overwound and if his naps are disturbed he will not go back to sleep even if exhausted, which means the rest of the day is cranky and bedtime is a pure nightmare (no pun intended). We'll be sleeping in a place that isn't home which will likely make it more difficult. He doesn't like to miss anything, he won't sleep in a coach.
 

DiSnEyF@n

Well-Known Member
Love the advice in this thread!
Taking my son this year, he will turn 2 while there.
We are staying at Port Orleans Riverside and they asked if we wanted a crib or a pack&play.

My son is not even talking yet. He is still in diapers (only uses the potty for difficult poops). He's a difficult napper especially if overwound and if his naps are disturbed he will not go back to sleep even if exhausted, which means the rest of the day is cranky and bedtime is a pure nightmare (no pun intended). We'll be sleeping in a place that isn't home which will likely make it more difficult. He doesn't like to miss anything, he won't sleep in a coach.
Hoping for you and your son that he gets so tired out that he DOES NOT wake up during naps. I took my daughter at 6 months and she slept WAY better in Disney than at home. Hope that helps... Plus the room darkening curtains are amazing!!! The best thing for afternoon sleeps! lol
 
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