Disney World Planning Fail

Every December 26, I get the Post-Christmas Blues and, to combat them, I begin to plan our family trip to Walt Disney World in March.

I followed the same timetable this year and got my flights/hotel squared away.  Then I made the mistake of blowing off the dining reservations until last week — an ungodly seven weeks prior to our arrival.

This is pretty much Disney Armageddon.  The End of Days.  The Death of Tinkerbell.

Now, before you Disney veterans begin breathing into a paper bag, I should tell you that I know better.  I’m a seasoned WDW traveler.  And while I’m not the WDW Extremist who books my trip six months in advance, I have found that two months out is generally OK if the dates don’t coincide with Spring Break.

I just procrastinated with the dining this year.  And now I’m paying for it.

I don’t believe in planning every single meal at WDW in advance, but there are key restaurants/experiences I want to nail down ahead of time.  And then there is some ratio where I’m willing to wing it with some fast food-ish (aka Quick Service Dining) options.  That’s OK.  If it’s part of the plan to do that.

Let me illustrate exactly what you don’t want:  No plan at the stroke of 5pm, when your kids declare they are starving at the same moment that everyone else in Central Florida reaches the same realization.  

Because, at that point, you are left with these choices:

–Accept a hot pretzel as your fate for dinner, served by some 15 year-old in an awful costume who chirps, “Have a magical day!”

–Wait on some line for 45 minutes to eat at The Craptastic Desperation Buffet.  {I don’t think that’s the official name, but I’d have to check.}

 

Not willing to fully embrace this destiny for three meals a day over five days, I have come up with some alternate coping mechanisms for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

1.  Research a secret loophole for using FastPass in restaurants.  Screw Space Mountain, I want the front of the line at Chef Mickey’s breakfast.

2.  While in a crowded, enclosed space {presumably, waiting to go on a ride}, start a loud and highly plausible rumor about “those unfortunate findings” in the kitchen of Cinderella’s Royal Table.  “I mean, at first I thought the mice were part of the act, but…”

3.  Begin to fabricate false memories of how tasty the buffets were.  Maybe that dried out meat and side of Goofy pasta really was worth the $30 per person.

4.  Wonder how long the family can subsist on the illegal stash of cereal bars I have smuggled into the park {ssshhhhh, they’re watching}.

5.  Drop hints to the kids that eating lunch with a Disney character is overrated.  Suggest that Mickey and Cinderella are egomaniacs who  steal children’s french fries.

6.  Rationalize the money we are saving by sacrificing sit-down meals.  After all, a series of $8 hot pretzels is way more economical, paving the way for the irrational purchase of various overpriced memorabilia in the shape of mouse ears.

7.  Secretly scheme a pregnancy-related blood sugar crash in front of my favorite Disney restaurant during peak dining hours.

8.  Tell my family that, starting on this vacation, we’ll be juicing as part of a new health kick.  Assure them that the dizziness will pass.

9.   Consider cheating on WDW with dinner at Universal.  Risk being locked out of our WDW resort upon our return.

10.  Embrace the Vacation = Ice Cream philosophy to an extreme by feeding the family those delicious Mickey-shaped ice cream bars at every meal.  Praise myself for the parenting knowledge to offer significant dairy supplemental value to my growing kids.

 

There.  I feel better already.  I think these strategies will work, if it comes down to it.

But, just in case, I’m on hold with the WDW Dining Reservations Line as I type this — ready to execute my alternate plan:  Begging.

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Comments

  1. Teri says:

    And THIS is why I posted my blog yesterday about what a great read your blog is. You crack me up and being that I’m a huge Disney fan who wouldn’t be caught dead NOT doing Chef Mickey’s for breakfast, I’m feeling your pain.

    Just remember, a turkey leg a day keeps the doctor away. Or something like that.
    Teri recently posted…Want a good laugh? Got some free time? Read on…My Profile

    • fordeville says:

      Thanks Teri. You raise a good point about the mutant turkey legs — I forgot about those! Surely they can sustain my family, even if we look like The Flintstones in the process.

  2. Natasha says:

    Too funny!!!! I would SO do #2 and #7 – in a heartbeat. It’s so great that someone else has the same sense of humor as I do. Great post!
    Natasha recently posted…Clean Up SaturdayMy Profile

  3. My mom and I went to Disney kind-of last minute (in terms of Disney planning!) and couldn’t get reservations at places I wanted to go. But we discovered that if the place you want to go has a bar area, you can eat there – no reservation required! We did this at Narcoossee’s at the Grand Floridan. I had the best lobster/filet I have EVER HAD in my LIFE there. We tried to go to the bar at California Grille, but no luck, of course. It worked everywhere else, though!
    JD Bailey @ Honest Mom recently posted…7 things that make winter suck a little lessMy Profile

  4. Jessica says:

    Oh my gosh the thought of all this planning makes me want to rock in a corner. We have yet to go to Disney and I’m scared.

    • fordeville says:

      Yeah, 4 kids at Disney might be more than I could handle without meds. You would need to be on that dining reservation line at the stroke of 180 days ahead of your trip.

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