A Reader Takes Her Twins To The Magic Kingdom

hi mamas,

i just wanted to say thanks again for all the help. i had emailed in a month ago asking for some hints on taking twin two-year-olds to disneyland for the first time. your insight was so helpful.

here are a few things i learned over vacation:

* instead of taking our “double wide” (the term we use for our twin stroller), we decided to buy two super cheap ($30/each) umbrella strollers from babies r us. they were perfect! small enough to travel with easily. cheap enough that i didn’t have to worry about leaving them all around the park every time we wanted to go on a ride. much easier to maneuver two single strollers through a large crowd then trying to part the seas with our double wide.

* we didn’t want to rent the strollers at the park, since those can only be used in the park. there is still a lot of walking to be done outside of the park with the whole new ‘Down Town Disney’ and all. we also had a ways to walk from the parking garage to the tram into the park. i think if we had stayed at a closer hotel and didn’t have to use the parking lot and our kids were a little older, we probably could have rented park strollers.

* it was helpful having our own strollers since the appearance was different from the park strollers. it might be hard to find your personal stroller when you come off a ride and there are 20 identical ones all in a row.

* one tip though…since there was a MAJOR rain storm when we were there, i brought a couple of extra large trash bags. we would just pull those over the strollers so they would stay dry while we went on our rides. it would have been a nightmare to come off a ride to find puddles of water in the seats of the strollers.

* we brought all our own food into the park. since most of the stuff offered there is just junk and super expensive. it was great having a little something for the boys to snack on while waiting in line. (cranberries, raisins, oat bars, fruit, nuts.) i think my kids snacked so much, we hardly sat down for a real “lunch” while we were there. it also helped pass the time in line.

* my husband and i each carried a separate backpack. this was so helpful! instead of one heavy bag, we split the load. it kept our hands free. we didn’t have to store anything in the stroller and it wasn’t too heavy. it really worked out well.

* we tried to avoid all characters. since it was rainy out, most characters were not out, which was awesome. although somehow, while touring mickey mouse’s house, we ended up in some line to meet mickey. we didn’t mean to. somehow we just got stuck in the line. no way out! my kids didn’t like that too much. we made it as fast as possible. they recovered pretty quickly though!

* my husband and i felt a little incomplete at the end of the trip since we spent the entire time going on dumbo-dumbo-dumbo, its a small world and all those other kid rides. but it was a trip for the kids, so it was a blast, but it was a little hard walking past indiana jones without being able to fast pass it!

-although i did hear of a “family pass” that disneyland offers. you can stand in line with your whole family. one adult gets to go on the ride, while the spouse stays in front with the kids. once the spouse returns, you can switch places. the spouse will then take the kids and you can hop on the ride without having to wait in the line all over again. we chose not to do this, since it was a trip for the kids and to do it, it could still be about 45 minutes of no entertainment for the kids.

* we took a digital photo of what floor and area we were parked on in the parking garage. by the end of the day, there was no way i could have remembered we had parked near “Goofy 14″.

* our kids are pretty easy going. we were able to skip nap time each day and they didn’t seem to care at all. although that just moved up their bedtime. we stayed in the park until about dinner time, then left to go eat, bath them and then go to bed. we never went back to the park at nighttime. since our kids are so little, they didn’t care. it made things relaxing though. i think our next trip will be different. closer hotel, afternoon naps and then back to the park at night. also, since we had bad weather, nighttime in the rain just didn’t seem worth it.

* our boys have been out of cribs since their second birthday. at home, they have guardrails on the sides of their twin beds so they don’t roll off. since the hotels do not offer guardrails, we just asked housekeeping for as many pillows as they could spare and we padded the floor around them. we got a room with two queen beds and my husband and i each slept with a kid. not the most romantic vacation! since we are not use to sharing the bed with a two year old, we both kept waking up by getting kicked in the head, ribs, you name it. both those boys are little squirmiers!

* we did bring their favorite “lovies” and special blankets from home. that helped them a lot.

* we are happy to report the boys ADORED disneyland. it was such an EXHAUSTING vacation, but really, just SO MAGICAL, SPECIAL and FUN! there is something to be said about the emotions you feel walking down Main Street with your own children for the first time. the ONLY tears we had in the park was when we got stuck running into Mickey. Other then that, it was awesome. I think it is because we didn’t go into it expecting anything. we didn’t even know if they would like the rides. but they did. they LOVED them actually. my husband and i just kept looking at each other in amazement of our two little dudes. i think all our planning and preparing for the trip paid off. thank you for your tips. they made the trip even that much easier and better!


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Ellen and Rachel are two old friends and “expert” mamas—one a pediatrician and one a family therapist—with fifty years of parenting experience between them.

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