Our trip to Disney was a lot of fun! My 3-year-old son behaved very well, and was not afraid of the characters. That was such a relief! My daughter had a blast, as usual.

In my previous Disney post, One Mom, Two Kids, 1 WannaBe, and 1 HoboBe go to Disney!, I talked about how I was going to pack the WannaBe. Once I got there, I had to adapt what I packed in it due to change in weather. So I did not need to pack the blankets. It was still full to the brim. You know, the bigger the bag, the more things we bring with us.

I also used the WannaBe as my airplane bag. So I had the chance to see first hand how it would behave as my carry on and as my park bag. Needless to say I learned a few things, and will likely change things around next time I go to the parks.

Carrying it in the airplane was OK. A bit on the large side, so I'm sure I bumped on a few seats as I was walking in the plane with it on my back. It fit nicely on the floor in front of my son's seat, because his legs don't reach down that far. But if you have a 5 year old or older kids, you will probably need to place the WannaBe in the overhead bin.

Here are the pros and cons to bringing the WannaBe as your Disney park stroller bag:

PROS:

- It fits everything you need to bring. I had 2 fuel cels, one with snacks and the other with water bottles; extra clothes for the kids; light jackets; light up toys; extra pull ups and wipes for my son; on-the-go-charger for iPhone; rain panchos; iPad.

- Easy access to everything, which made bag check at the park entrance easier.

- Option to use shoulder strap or backpack straps when stroller had to be folded during tram/bus transportation inside Disney property.

 

CONS:

- Bag would not fit in my umbrella stroller - in the under-the-seat storage area - so I had to bring my full size double stroller. The problem is that the regular double stroller is way too havy to push all day, especially at Animal Kingdom, where the paths are irregular, and not the smoother, special pavement that you find at Magic Kingdom. Pushing it all day is hard no matter what pavement it is. I was pushing the weight of the bag, the stroller, and of the two kids all day.

- Because the WannaBe "needed" my full size stroller, that meant I had to carry the folded stroller, the bag, and manage the two kids all at once. And let me tell you, it is very difficult to carry a full stroller in and out of the tram and bus.

 

CONCLUSION:

The WannaBe itself is a wonderful bag. I love it. But I don't think it is the best option for the parks. As I said in my post "8 Things You Should Bring to Disney" Part1 and Part 2, I usually take my Mighty Be, and it fits perfectly in the umbrella stroller little storage area under the seat. If you have an umbrella stroller that can accomodate the WannaBe, than that is great. Otherwise, I would recommend taking the Mighty Be. If you prefer to rent a Disney stroller, the WannaBe will probably be too big.

Traveling with the full size double stroller is also a pain, because you cannot check it at the gate. You have to check it at the ticket counter because it is above the allowed weight limit.

Would other bags work? The answer is it depends on what you need to bring, how many kids, etc. For me, I overpack, and I like to be able to reach and grab the items easily. My vote still goes for the Mighty Be. The BFF, which is one of my favorite bags, could also work, but it would not fit everything I like to bring with me to the parks.

In any case, the water resistent fabric of Ju-Ju-Be bags are perfect to for Disney World. Remeber the Florida weather, and the occasional rain. I would not want to bring a regular cloth bag with me, or leather bag for that matter.

On a side note, my Hobo Be in Licorice Twirl is a perfect bag to carry around and take in the rides. I like to keep the autograph books and pens in there, as well as the bottled water in use, camera, phone, park tickets, fast passes, photo passes, and wallet.

As far as the WannaBe being the stroller bag, it was not the best experience for me, not because of the bag itself, but because of my stroller. Next time, I will probably bring the Mighty Be, and either rent a Disney stroller or buy a new double umbrella stroller. 

 

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Published in Creative Living

Four of my favorite things, besides my family, are Ju-Ju-Be bags, organization, makeup, and Disney. It is not a coincidence that all 4 of these things are either used or talked about at my house on a daily basis.

When my son started refusing to be potty trained, I promissed him that if he went "number 2" in the potty I would take him to see Peter Pan in Disney World. It took a few months, but he finally did it! Well, he is not consistent, but ever since he did it, he has been asking me when he was gonna go see Peter Pan. Now I have to follow through. As promissed, we are going to Orlando in a few days.

If you read my posts 8 Things You Should Bring to Disney Part1 and Part 2, you know that I always bring my Mighty Be to the parks. I generally bring the BFF on the plane. But this time I will have my son with me too, not just my daughter.

This will be a totally different experience. My son is 3 years old, and my daughter is 5. And I need some extra things this time around. So I thought I needed to upgrade the bag.

 

So I will be taking a Hobo Be in Licorice Twirl and a perky Wannabe. The HoboBe will mainly stay with me, so I can carry the potty seat, wallet, a bottle of water, plastic rain cover, autograph books, and small ods and ends. The Wannabe will be the stroller bag. I have 2 Fuel Cells there, one with snacks, and another with water bottles and drinks for the kids. I also have two light blackets, a change of clothes for each of the kids, two light jackets, and an extra pull up (just in case).

Last time I went with my daughter this time of the year, it was a little breezy at night and the blancket and jacket came in handy. Yes I know. I overpack. Oh well. That is why I have a Wannabe! And I'm taking it in the plane with me.

 

 

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Published in Creative Living

 

Continuing our recommendations on the "8 Things you should bring to Disney PART 1" from yesterday, we have 4 more must-haves for your Disney trip.

 

# 5 - Snacks

If you want to save some money while at the park, you will definitely need to carry some snacks with you. Disney has no rules against snacks from home. You could even bring your own sandwich for lunch if you choose. I found that if you know where to eat, it won’t cost you a fortune, and will be well worth the experience. Buying snacks for all the kids can be not only costly, but time consuming. You surely have the space to bring snaks in your Mighty Be.

 

# 6 – Glow-in-the-dark colorful toys

Walking at one of the Disney parks at night is truly magical. The way they decorate the buildings is something out of a dream. You can see lots of people and kids with glow-in-the dark toys. Some spin, some have interesting shapes. And they cost extra cash. If that is not in your budget, you can be prepared, and bring your own from home, like this Flashing Star Necklace and give it to your kid at the end of the day, so they don’t feel left out.

 

# 7 – Disney T-Shirts

You can buy it online for a fraction of what you will end up paying if you buy it last minute at the park or at Downtown Disney. Last time we went, I spotted some Disney shirts at our local store that were on sale. This time, I found great deals online. They can start as low as $3.99 (as oposed to $19.99+ at the Disney Store). So I bought in advance.

 

My daughter loved wearing her Tinker Bell T-shirt to Magic Kingdom, and it was a conversational piece when she met Tinker Bell in person
 

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# 8 – Reclining Umbrella Stroller

I travel quite a bit with the kids. At first I didn’t think it was worth it to invest in a nice umbrella stroller. After my first trip, I changed my mind. My back hurt so much from stooping over the short stroller, and I was so frustrated with the wheels not turning to the right way, I bit the bullet and invested in a nice, tall stroller. I didn’t want to break the bank either, so I did a lot of research before I bought Britax stroller very simmilar to the B-Nimble. The difference is that mine doesn't have the adaptor to the infant car seat. It really helps to have a compartment underneath to store your bag. The reclining feature is also a must. At the end of the day my daughter was tired, and wanted to take a nap. So easy with our reclining stroller.

 

Another must-have feature is the ease of opening and folding, as well as carrying it when closed. If you take the Disney bus from your hotel to the parks, you will need to close the stroller, so you don’t want to spend 5 minutes trying to deal with the stroller while everyone is waiting for you.

 

My favorite part about my umbrella stroller was the fact that it was tall, so I did not need to bed over to push it. It gave me good space for my feet too, and I didn’t find myself kicking the back of the stroller with every step. What a relief!

 

Disney parks do offer strollers for rental. But, they are not the most comfortable things in the world. The single unit is small, not really god for naps. The double strollers are larger. But in any case, you don’t get to take it to the parking lot or back to your hotel with you. Depending on what room you are in, you still have a bit of walking to do when you get back to the hotel, and chances are the little one will be asleep. This is why I highly recommend that you bring your own umbrella stroller like the B-Nimble.

 

 

There it is. The 8 things you must bring to Disney in your next vacation. I hope you have a magical trip!

 

07/20/2012

Published in Real Mom Tips

 

Last November, my then 3 year-old daughter. And I had loads of fun while at Walt Disney World. Since I am a planner, I tried to think of everything I could possibly need. And when I say everything, I mean EVERYTHING! I even brought plastic wraps for our feet, not to get our tennis shoes wet while on the Kali River Rapids. I found out it was too much hassle to put those one, so plastic wraps did not make the top 10 list!

 

But much of my preparation did work, and our Disney trip was a success. So much so, that my daughter (who is now 4) and I are going back to Walt Disney World in less than 2 weeks from now. I’m again in that preparation mode.

 

# 1 - Mighty Be

This is the perfect size bag for a day at the park. It is not by accident that it is number one on my list. To start, before you enter the park, you will need to go through security, and show them the contents of your bag. With the Might Be, that process was a breeze. I opened the top, moved around some clothes, and done.

 

During summer you won’t need jackets, but definitely bring an extra T-shirt for the kids. Messes happen. Plus, if you are going on a wet ride towards the end of the day, you might need one. I found out the hard way back in November, that T-shirts aren’t so affordable at the Splash Mountain store. We had a cool weather that day, and I could not let my daughter stay wet.

 

The Mighty Be is perfect, and gives you easy and quick access to your belongings. I kept my bag in the lower compartment of the stroller.

 

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2 - Be Quick or Large Be Set

Even though we used the stroller a lot, many times we were away from it while going on rides that were close together, or while waiting to take a picture with a character. I definitely recommend that you keep your documents, credit cards, money, camera, and phone with you at all times. The Mighty Be is great, but if you can leave your main bag in the stroller, be sure to have something smaller to take with you.

 

I took my Shadow Waltz Be Quick and attached the long strap from the Black EL Be Major to the D ring. I wore it cross body. It fit my photo pass, credit card, my phone, camera, and a small HD cam corder. Perfect size

 

# 3  - Fuel Cell

It is true that you can find water fountains throughout the park. But it could be a hassle to find one just when you need it. I placed 3-4 bottled waters and some ice inside the fuel cell, and it was great. We had fresh water anytime, anywhere. You can also put some juice boxes in there too. Best of all, it fits perfectly inside the Mighty Be.

 

# 4 - Child Identification with SafetyTat Tatoo

One of my main concerns going to Disney with a small child was safety. What if she got lost? What if she wondered away from me? I could write contact info on her skin, but then again, it could fade away with sweat, water, or by simply rubbing against her clothes. Permanent ink doesn’t seem like a safe choice anyway. Loose pieces of paper on a pocket can get lost, wet, etc. So I came across a tattoo sticker, that is resistant to sweat, and can have all the info you need right there on the kid’s arm. I thought my daughter to ask for help and to ask an adult to call that number on her tattoo to contact mommy.

 

The sticker I chose was the one that comes printed with your phone number. I chose not to have her name on it, to avoid strangers calling her as if they knew her. The phone number also gave me the option to use it with my daughter or with my son. This model has code on the side that can be scanned with any smart phone, and there I included my name, address, allergy information, etc.

 

You also have the choice to select a tattoo in which you can handwrite anything you want. Applying and removing the SafetyTat Tatoo was very easy. I just followed the instructions. The best part was that it lasted 3 days, so I only needed 1 sticker the whole time. It would have lasted more than that, but I removed once we got back home.

 

07/19/2012

 

Check out Part 2 of the 8 Things you should bring to Disney.
     
Published in Real Mom Tips
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