Sunday, October 21, 2012

Try new restaurants at Disney

So, every year we attempt to try new restaurants at Disney World. Our top favorite table service restaurants have been (in no particular order):

  1. Trails End at Fort Wilderness. It is a buffet and I have heard the menu has changed. We last ate here in 2008.
  2. ESPN Club at Boardwalk. Good for sports loving boys/men. There are even TV's in the bathrooms, haha. No reservations required, which is a nice option sometimes.
  3. Whispering Canyon Cafe at Wilderness Lodge. This is the most kid friendly restaurant I have seen since Chuck E. Cheese. The wait staff is rude (on purpose), ours threw the straws and napkins on the table and slammed the drinks down on the table still on the tray, we had to serve ourselves. You should have seen the looks on the kids faces, priceless. But they do sweet things too, an elderly couple had anniversary buttons on and the waiters had them stand up to slow dance while the entire restaurant sang to them. Make sure your kids ask for ketchup, just to see what happens. 
  4. Sci-Fi Dine in at Hollywood Studios. The food here is very good and it feels like you are at a drive in theater. You even sit in cars. Kids love the old movies on the big screen.
  5. Garden Grill at Epcot. This is, by far, my favorite character meal. The food is excellent and not a buffet like most character meals. The restaurant rotates slightly so you see different scenery throughout your meal. Request an outer facing booth so your kids can look down and see the ride Living with the Land go right underneath the restaurant. Characters include Mickey, Chip, Dale, and Pluto.
  6. Crystal Palace at Magic Kingdom. Nothing like breakfast with Winnie the Pooh. We usually book our reservations at the earliest possible. This way you are in the park with the castle right there and NO ONE else will be in your picture :)
We are very picky eaters so we usually go for places that serve chicken, steak, and the like. It is also nice to go someplace to get a $30 steak when you have the dining plan, so you get your moneys worth. When we go during free dining, we found that a free $30 steak tastes the best. I highly recommend the dining plan, whether it is free or not. It makes budgeting so much easier while you are there. It seems simpler that your meals are "paid for" and you can carry less cash. One year I was 3 days into my vacation and the only thing I opened my wallet for was tips. We get the standard plan with 1 counter service meal, 1 table service meal, and 1 snack per day. We balance out the lack of our 3rd meal by ordering breakfast groceries from We don't like heavy breakfasts and it is easier to eat a Pop Tart or granola bar while on the move. 

Now on to the restaurants that we will be going to this time.
  1. Rainforest Cafe in Animal Kingdom. My kids still like Rainforest Cafe's so, why not?
  2. ESPN Club at Boardwalk. I have told my son that this restaurant will become a tradition for us. Sometimes older boys need a break from all of the princesses. The food is good and the atmosphere is fun. 
  3. Cape May Cafe at Beach Club. We have had breakfast with Minnie Mouse here before but this time we are doing dinner. It is a clam bake with tons of seafood choices. There is also some choices for this land lubber!!
  4. Chef Mickey at Contemporary resort. We have never been here and I am worried that two 12 year olds and a 9 year old with be too old for this but I didn't have many choices. I had it narrowed down to Chef Mickey and 1900 Park Fare, both character meals. I asked my kids, back in May, which they would prefer, dinner with Cinderella and her step sisters (1900 Park Fare) or dinner with Mickey. They both said Mickey, although the step sisters sounded quite intriguing to Eve.
  5. Coral Reef at Epcot. Kids love aquariums. This one is huge and you can watch the fish while you eat. 
Disney restaurants are important to my kids. They want to know where they will be eating, just as much as they want to know where we will be staying. So, I have made today's countdown gift a restaurant reveal. I have typed up a paper and added some graphics I found online to give to them. Hopefully, this goes well. 

I highly recommend for dining choices. They have menues for all of the restaurants so you can weigh the pro's and cons for each. Make sure you book your dining reservations 180 days in advance. I cannot stress this enough. If you even wait until 170 days some restaurants will be booked. My time for Chef Mickey is 7:45p.m. because I waited until a week or so after  my 180 date and all of the earlier times were booked. I had a friend attempt to book Garden Grill at 178 days and the day she wanted was entirely booked. 

Saturday, October 20, 2012

3 Days until our Vacation

With only 3 days left we have lots of things to do. I have done TONS of laundry today. It seemed like all of Xander's shirts were dirty. During all of these loads of laundry, I was working on packing. I think Eve is completely packed. Xander and I are getting there. It seems like a slow process. 

Let me start of explaining todays gift with a quick back story. This Disney vacation is on a super tight budget. The hubby is unemployed and after everything it doesn't leave much money for extra fun. Most of the gifts in this countdown are things we would have purchased anyway, like toiletries, gum, candy, travel activities, etc. My mother and I have split costs of most of the gifts because I would be buying for 5 people. I am not heartless, nor am I trying to exclude anyone from anything. Having said this, today's gift was only purchased for Xander and Eve. I didn't want to leave Catelyn out of it but considering the gift was $25 each, it was kind of difficult to add an extra person on to it for me. She is completely unaware of the gift giving process, so her feelings will not be hurt. She lives in a different city, approximately 75 miles away. We have just been keeping her gifts in a huge gift bag and they will be given to her before we leave.

Today's gift is a $25 Disney Gift Card. I know that these can be purchased at Walgreens, Meijer, or CVS but I wanted to order different ones from There are tons of choices and you even get a cute card with it for free that you can add your own message to. The date on these cards are when I ordered them. There are other greeting cards you can buy but I didn't want to purchase anything extra.  

The gift cards I chose were ones that included Mickey Mouse. Xander's has Mickey golfing, because he loves golf. Eve's card has all of the standard Disney characters on it. The website has so many different choices, probably hundreds, but I wanted standard Mickey. We have purchased gift cards at WDW before and they usually end up with the Muppets (Eve) or Perry the Platypus (Xander) so this time I wanted Mickey.

Sorry this picture is blurry but I had a REALLY hard time getting another picture to load correctly so I took this one. The gift cards were attached to the inside of the above greeting cards and had the gift card amount typed underneath the card. Both of my cards are worth $25 each.

Total for this gift is $50. 

Friday, October 19, 2012

More Disney Halloween fun

Today's Disney countdown gift is a Halloween necklace. It has a red flashing light. I bought this to go along with the glow stix that I purchased previously for the countdown. These will work great for Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party. They usually sell stuff like this on the carts that the CM's wheel out at dark during the party. The only difference is that these are not a Disney character and I only paid $.97 each. They don't really serve a true purpose, just to make the party more fun and to help with kids always wanting something that you know will end up at the bottom of the toy box in 2 weeks when the novelty has worn off. 

These super cute necklaces were purchased at Walmart. I had to dig pretty far back on the rack to find some that the batteries were still good but I was successful in finding 3 different ones. Hopefully the batteries last through the party.

Total for this gift was: $2.91

Thursday, October 18, 2012

More Disney coupons...arcade

We all love those packets that Disney sends us after our reservations are paid for. Some of the coupons are helpful and some I have never used. The one coupon that I have used every time is the arcade coupon. It is for a 100 point arcade card. I usually use the coupon to get 1 free card and then buy my other child a 100 point card. Any more points that they want over and above 100, they have to purchase themselves. We are usually busy at the Walt Disney World Resort every day, whether it be park hopping or resort hopping for dining reservations, but we usually have a few minutes to spare here and there for a couple of video games. One hundred points is not a lot but it is just enough to help when the kids beg to play arcade games. I have tried asking "how can you want to play games when you are at Disney World?" but it didn't work, they look at me like I've just grown 2 heads. I guess I ask stupid questions. 

Last year we went resort hopping on the monorail loop. We decided to get off at the Contemporary Resort so they kids could be on the inside when the monorail goes through. We noticed the arcade and the kids wanted to check it out. While checking it out Eve sat down at a game and found a game card. She took it to the arcade attendant and he told her that she could keep it for being honest by trying to turn it in. When we checked the balance, there were actually some points on it. BONUS!! They took turns playing games on it at Contemporary until we were ready to leave. 

We usually keep the cards in our wallets just in case they find an arcade to play at and they have points remaining. I am extremely thankful that my kids are old enough that they can play in there alone and I can rest on the "parent bench," usually right outside of the arcade entrance. 

My gift for today is a coupon for the arcade. Because Disney sends us their WONDERFUL coupon books, I will only have to pay for 1 arcade card :), this makes mamma VERY happy.  I figure if they are going to play in there anyway, I might as well make it one of my gifts, Mamma is always thinking ahead.

The coupons I have made before here and I keep reusing the envelopes that I explained how to make here

Total cost of todays gift is $0 until I get to my resort. 

Candy coupons for Disney

Todays gift is a candy coupon for Disney. My kids like those sour candy powder tubes that are sold everywhere so the coupon is for a small one.

The envelopes I have made previously and reused, the coupons were made on Picasa and I have used the clip art before.

Total for this gift is $0 until I get to Disney.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Take Ponchos to Disney

Yes, Walt Disney World sells ponchos. Yes, they are cute with Mickey Mouse on them. Yes, you can reuse them. Yes, they are expensive. AND yes, EVERYONE will have the EXACT same poncho on when it rains.....except me and my group. We will have ponchos that we bought at Dollar Tree before we left for $1. One dollar gets you 2 ponchos, one clear and one yellow. The ones I bought are thinner than Disney's and might not be reusable but I am definitely OK with that.

These are similar to the Disney ones:
This one pictured is from and is like the Disney ones. (I Googled "Disney World Poncho" and got tons of pictures but I didn't want to post someone elses pictures on my blog just to show you what they look like.)They are nice and heavy duty but can sell out quickly in a nice rain storm and once you wear them, it is hard to tell who is in your family. Picture this: you and your family decide to all wear your matching tie-dyed shirts so you will be able to find one another quickly, add some rain, these ponchos, and EVERYONE is now in your family. HAHA

This is what I bought:
Pretty standard Dollar Tree item. We purchase these like crazy and take them everywhere for trips. In July, we went to Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, TN (highly recommend) and it POURED rain, like I was SOAKED through, it looked like I jumped in a pool and then decided to go to a theme park, we had 2 of these ponchos left. Mammie got one and so did Eve. Xander and I suffered. So, for this trip everyone gets a 2 pack. This will be so much easier than someone suffering (mainly, ME). 

Total for this gift is $5. 

Monday, October 15, 2012

Coupons for Disney..Mini-golf and a planning folder

With only 8 days left, we are FINALLY in the home stretch and getting everything finalized.

I have finally booked our Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party tickets and I decided to just do Will Call pick up since our travel dates are so near. They now have a print at home option for specialty tickets but I prefer the hard plastic tickets to carry around and not pieces of paper. My kids like to keep them and hang them in their rooms as souvenirs when we get home. 

I have all of my travel documents and placed in my cute Minnie Mouse folder. This is the first year I have taken a folder. In years past I have put everything in a file folder to carry it but what is the fun in that? So, this year I found this cute Minnie folder at the Family Dollar for $.50. 

I added the labels to the front to include: the last names of everyone in our party (covered up, sorry), Disney Vacation 2012, the dates of our vacation, All-Star Sports Resort, and then mine and my mothers cell phone numbers (also covered). The Mickey head is saved on my computer and has been used several times, for several different things for this vacation and the countdown. I used software I already had on the computer to make the labels.

This is the inside of the folder. I have one of our cute luggage tags to attach to a bag still in there. On one side is our Disney travel documents and behind that is our MNSSHP confirmations. On the other side is all of our flight info, Garden Grocer info, and our car rental info. 

Our gift for today is another coupon. This is a coupon for Miniature golf at WDW. Xander asks every time if we can go mini-golfing but we never seem to have the time but this time we are going for sure. With Disney's travel documents you automatically get 1 round of mini-golf free for 1 person. Because we have 2 rooms, we get 2 coupons. This just leaves me 1 person to pay for and since Eve is the only child by Disney's standards, I will pay for her. The adults will not be playing, just taking pictures. 

I am reusing envelopes that I have made previously, I just change the number on the front. I LOVE that we are out of double digits :) The coupon is made the same as the one I explained about yesterday here

Total cost of today's gift is $0 today but I am guessing it will cost around $15 once I am at WDW. 

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Coupons for Disney..Mickey ice cream bar

9 days left :) Today's gift is a coupon for a free Mickey Mouse ice cream bar. We love those ice cream bars and in the years past when my kids have asked for them I always answered with "you can have one if you use your snack credits" but not this year. I made these cute little coupons with my Picasa software. I downloaded the Disney/Mickey name tag here and used the Waltograph software on my computer to type the message. I then printed them on cardstock to make them durable. They turned out really cute. The plan with these is to have the child fork it over when they want their ice cream bar. Although, if they forget their coupon I won't say no.

The cost of today's gift is $0, at least until I get to WDW. 

Saturday, October 13, 2012

10 days left and lots of things to do

We only have 10 days left until our vacation and we have lots of things to do. We are especially busy this weekend because my son has a soccer tournament on Saturday and Sunday about 85 miles away from our home so I am up early to do laundry, blog, get ready, and because my allergies are killing me today. I was on a field trip yesterday with my daughter to a battlefield/re-enactment and being outside in the woods all day has really taken its toll on my allergies today. Hopefully the Claritin kicks in soon.

Today is also the day we can do Disney's online check-in. I highly recommend this service. It is much quicker than regular check-in. Basically, you just confirm your name, phone number, and credit card for either room charges and/or to use for a credit card on your key to the world card. Once this is all confirmed all  you have to do is go to a separate line at your resorts check-in area. The line will have signs that say online check-in above them. These lines are usually shorter than the regular line. All of your stuff is printed and ready to go, just show your drivers license to confirm who you are. No waiting to scan your credit card, no answering 20 questions, no super long lines, just a quick in and out. We were in and out of line last year in 10 minutes. It was late at night but it was still quicker than the year before when we arrived late at night and it took 30 minutes to check-in. This does not get your rooms ready faster, it just helps speed up the check-in process.

I made some new envelopes to use for some of my gifts. I have some papers to give the kids and also some different coupons (ice cream, mini-golf, etc.). I thought it would look nicer to use a cute envelope than to just throw a little piece of paper in that big gift bag. Don't worry, I saved the gift bags because there are some more gifts to come. 

To make these cute envelopes I did the following: First I needed an envelope. I just happened to have 3 plain, cream colored envelopes (I think they are still left over inside envelopes from my wedding 14.5 years ago), the size of these is 7x5. I had some Mickey Mouse scrapbook paper from some autograph books I made a few years ago. This paper was already cut to 6x6, I just trimmed the top and bottom so it would fit 5 inches. Next up is the Mickey head. I Googled "Mickey head outline" and searched until I found the right one. I saved it on my computer and printed it in the right size I was looking for. I cut the head out and then traced around it on black construction paper that I got from my kids art drawer, I glued the black head to the Mickey Mouse paper. As for the word "Days" it was typed and printed in the Waltograph font that I already have on my computer, it was glued to the Mickey head. I also typed some numbers in the Waltograph font and will tape those on daily. After all of this was put together, I glued it to the envelope. I'm sure this would look much cuter if someone had a Cricut but I do not and just used what I had. 

As for today's gift the kids are getting Pressed Penny papers. I found these papers at I used the "Current Listings with Short Descriptions". Back in April I gave the kids some quarters and pennies to use in the parks listed here and in May I gave them pouches to carry their pennies in here. These are nice checklists to carry in their backpacks so they can highlight the ones they want before we go and we will know exactly where to find them when we get there. There are 9 pages but if you photocopy 2 sided you can get away with only 5 pages. I will have the kids take only the pages they need, ex. if we are going to EPCOT there is no need to take the pages that list pennies from Animal Kingdom with us.   

Total cost of this gift is $0....I REALLY like free things :)

Friday, October 12, 2012

Craptastic gift :( but what are ya gonna do?

So, I was having a little trouble coming up with a gift for today. I have all of these fantastic gifts picked out and then kind of didn't know what else to do. The rest of my countdown has some cute things but I just couldn't come up with something else. I wanted to do $25 gift cards to Universal Studios but one of the points of this countdown is to do gifts that aren't super expensive and later down the road they are getting Disney gift cards. So, what is a girl to do?

My kids constantly use my Chap Stix because they get dry lips. So, I got them each their own. I bought the moisturizing kind with the highest SPF that I could find. I justified this gift by saying that it will protect their lips from the sun ;) I explained to my kids that I was out of ideas before they opened this gift so they were totally prepared for the lameness that was to follow. Needless to say they weren't too disappointed with the gift. My daughter thought it was crazy at first but realized that she would use it and liked it once she thought of that. My son, on the other hand, loved his right away.

I bought this at Walmart for $2.88 for the 3 pack. Nothing for adults today.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

12 days....salty snacks

WARNING: todays blog is via email because I want to try mobile blogging.

This is going to be short and sweet.

Today's gift is salty snacks for the plane. Airlines seem to have went to pretzels as their snack and I'm not a pretzel fan so I thought I would go another route. Airports are super expensive with this kind of crap. Last year my son wanted beef jerky at the Newark airport and it was $10 for a little bag. Ridiculous!!!!

The sunflower seeds were 2 for $1 and the 3 bags of nuts were$.59 each, all from a convenience store.

Total for this countdown gift is $2.77.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

13 days until vacation

We only have 13 days remaining until we leave :) This will be short and sweet. Today we each got a pack of gum. We are BIG gum chewers in my family (but only sugar free) and I always buy gum to pack to take with me so I don't pay Disney's high prices for a pack of gum. It is also good for the popping of the ears on flights. 

All 3 packs of  Trident gum came from Dollar Tree and were $1 each. The Extra is also from Dollar Tree for $1. My Orbit gum was on sale at Target for $2 for the 3 pack.

Total for this gift is $6

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Plane/car entertainment for trips

My best advice to people going on either long car rides or airplane rides is to pack enough to keep your kids occupied, because a bored kid is like a bored puppy....they get themselves into tons of trouble. We are approximately a 1.5 hour car ride from our closest airport and 2+ hour plane ride to Florida, add in the time spent at the airport waiting for our flight and it adds up to A LOT OF TIME that I need to keep 3 children entertained. Now, please understand that my kids are older and the two 12 year olds (Xander and my niece) will probably spend most of their time listening to music but there is still some time that they will want to do something else. I have already purchased my kids some activities, like coloring books and paper, but they were in need of something else. 

Today's Disney countdown gift is another activity for all of us. The kids get MadLibs (I LOVE MADLIBS!!!) and the adults get word searches. I cannot resist to add in something educational to their fun and MadLibs is it. 

The MadLibs were purchased at for $3.59 each. The word searches came from Dollar Tree for $1 each. This gift total is $12.77. 

We only have 14 days left!! 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Candy, Candy, Candy

We only have 15 days left. Today's gift is some candy. We usually get a bag of candy to eat at the airport, on the plane, or in the hotel room. It is much easier/cheaper to buy candy at home than it is to buy it at the airport or Disney's gift shops. 

From left to right: Catelyn gets Reese Cups from Dollar Tree for $1 and gummy worms from CVS for $.88, Eve gets sour gummy worms from CVS for $.88 and Now & Later's from Dollar Tree for $1, Xanders candy is Life Saver Gummi's that were $1.87 at Walmart and sour gummy worms from CVS for $.88, Mammie gets 2 bags of chocolate covered raisins for $1 each at Dollar Tree, and I get chocolate covered peanuts from CVS for $1 and gummy bears for $.88 from CVS.

All of the gummy candy from CVS was the bigger, 2 for $3 bags of candy but I got them all on sale for $.88 each. Sometimes CVS puts candy onsale and its not in their ad's so you just have to keep an eye on products when you go in. 

Total for today's gift is: $10.39

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Anti-bacterial hand gel for yucky bathrooms

Today marks 16 days until we go to Florida. The gift for today is anti-bacterial hand gel. All bathrooms are yucky, even Disney bathrooms. I encourage my children to use hand gel after they wash their hands and leave the bathroom, this helps with the germs that people leave on door handles. They usually use mine but I thought it would be easier if everyone had their own, especially if we split up to go on different rides.

Ok, for the descriptions: starting at the 12 o'clock spot and going clockwise. First is Xanders hand gel and glow in the dark holder from Bath and Body Works for $1.50, then is Mammie's gel and holder from B&BW for $1.25, Catelyn's is from Kohl's for $1.52, my gel and glow in the dark holder is also from B&BW for $1.50, and finally Eve's is from Justice and was $2.10. 

The total for this gift is $7.87.

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, I am officially out of Mickey head paint chips from Home Depot. I explained how I made this Mickey to use for the remainder of my countdown here. I realize it is very basic and simple but it is going to work for what we need. 

Free time

I had some free time today without husband and kids so I decided to make my blog look prettier. This might be easy to some but I am new to blogging so I had to do some research. 

First off I found this website which helped me make the cute new header for the blog. I already had Picasa on my computer so I just followed the rest of the steps and I think it turned out good for my first try. Now that I know what I am doing, I can work on it some more later.

Then I wanted to put pictures of my family, along with description, along the side of my blog. Well, just by playing around I added them. I'm sure there is a different/better way but for now this works. 

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Pens to go with paper

First off, I do apologize for the amount of Disney posts. I created this blog for the purpose of blogging my upcoming vacation and then I can use it as a personal blog afterward. Most of what I do right now is planning this trip, besides working, cleaning, cooking, and other motherly things. I am happy to help someone with planning a trip, or even answer questions, just send me a message or leave it in comments and I will try to help you the best I can. 

Todays countdown gift is pens to go with the paper that we got yesterday. Pretty self-explanatory and pretty inexpensive for a 17 day gift. The Phineas and Ferb pens came in a 3 pack from the dollar rack at Walmart for $1. The pretty pens for Mammie and I came as a 2 pack from Target's dollar rack for $1. So, the total for this gift is $2.  With this gift and some of the others (coloring books, crayons, paper, etc.) I'm sure their are Disney/Mickey versions out there if thats what someones child wants but I am dealing with two 12 year olds and a 9 year old. Even if they love Walt Disney World, they still feel a little too old for Mickey items. In the past I have gotten Mickey halloween coloring books at our local Dollar Tree. 

I guess I should have gotten a close up pic of the pens but I didn't think about it until it was too late :( Oh well, you get the idea!

Today was also the last of my Home Depot Mickey head paint chips.The closest Home Depot is approximately 60 miles from my home so we will not be getting any more of those. Instead, I have taken the Mickey Mouse clip art, like that on the "Xander" bag, and just typed the word "Days" on it in Waltograph font in my Picasa software. I have then typed some numbers that I will stick on it daily. You can see how it turns out starting tomorrow. 

Friday, October 5, 2012

18 days...the suitcases are out

The suitcases are out and more than half packed. With only 18 days left to go and Indiana seeing cooler weather, we are able to get our shorts and tank tops packed. 

Todays gift is a small notepad/journal. These are small enough to fit in your hand. My kids like to draw and write notes so I thought these were perfect. We have taken larger notepads in the past but they are heavier. With these they can use them on the plane and they can also take them in the parks without worrying about a heavy backpack. 

The Angry Birds notebooks are sold as a 2 pack for $1 on the Walmart dollar rack, I bought 2 of the packs.  Mammie's paper is cuter with polka-dots and it came from Target for $1 on the dollar rack. So, the total for this gift is $3. 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

19 days until vacation, vacation, vacation

We only have 19 days left!!!!! I love a good Disney vacation to brighten your mood. :) Todays gift is crayons or colored pencils for the kids. These go along with the coloring books they got yesterday. Eve got Princess glitter crayons from the Dollar Tree for $1, Catelyn got colored pencils from the Dollar Tree for $1, and Xander got colored pencils from Walmart for $2. I would have gotten Catelyn's there as well but I got his months ago. So, the total spent on this gift is $4.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Vacation in 20 days......coloring books

Todays Disney countdown gift is Angry Birds coloring books. I always get my kids at least 1 coloring book before a vacation so I thought these would be perfect.  These were purchased at Target on the $1 rack. So, I spent $3 total on this gift. No gifts for adults today.We only have 20 days left :)

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

21 Days.....Drink Mix

So, everyone knows how gross the water fountain water is inside WDW and knows to take bottled water when possible but what happens when you drink it all? Well, I recommend drink mixes. Just fill up your now empty water bottle and add the drink mix. This will help with the disgusting flavor and the luke warm temperature. Everyone sells these, name brand and store brand.

For our 21 days remaining gift, I bought everyone their own drink mixes.  I bought Weylert's Diet Peach tea for $1 at Dollar General, Walmart brand sugar-free Cherry drink and tea with lemon for $1.74 each, and 3 different flavors of sugar-free Hawaiian punch for $1 each at Dollar Tree. In all, I bought 6 boxes of drink mixes at a total of $7.48.

I have heard that any of the counter service restaurants will give you free ice water but I have not tested this myself.

Monday, October 1, 2012

22 Days....Glow Stix

Today starts the daily gifts for our Disney vacation. These last 23 gift are stuff that I would usually buy for a trip, it is just broken down into different days (ex. coloring books, glow stix, candy, etc.). Please keep in mind that the ages of my children for these gifts are 12 and 9 years old (they have been 4 times), as well as my 12 year old niece. Any gifts given are age appropriate and appropriate for children that have already been but I have some other suggestions to help you plan your own.

  1. Princess dress....that can be purchased cheaply at Walmart or Target. This will help with little girls wanting the $80 dresses you can buy all over Disney.
  2. Tiara....(see description for #1)
  3. Autograph children have been several times and we have several autograph books. These can be purchased at , eBay, or homemade. 
  4. Big, Fat Marker for autograph book. Characters with big hands or gloves prefer the fat Sharpies. 
  5. Disposable camera....we have a photo album with just pictures from a childs point of view. They see things so much differently than we do and it is a great keepsake.
  6. Misting/personal fan....these can be purchased at WDW but you can get them locally at Walmart or even the Dollar Store and save some money. My kids decorated theirs with Mickey stickers.
  7. Disney jammies...Disney store, Walmart, Target, etc.
  8. Pirate gear....hats, eye patch, etc. I have found this stuff at Dollar Tree.
  9. Custom t-shirts...eBay, Disney Store, homemade. 
  10. Mickey stuffed animal...Walmart and Target have these for MUCH cheaper than WDW.

Now, on to my gift for day 22!!! I bought the kids glow stix. I cannot stress enough that you should buy these BEFORE you go on your vacation. You can get them cheaply on line or at local stores (especially during halloween) and save buckets of cash compared to Walt Disney's prices. One year I took them and surprised the kids on the first night at WDW, just when the CM's were wheeling those glow carts out with all of the junk on it. I had a tube of 100 that my kids could use (I bought from Glow Granny on eBay), it was much cheaper and the kids had enough to last our entire 10 day vacation.

This years, though, were purchased at Target on the dollar rack for $1 per tube. I bought 6 tubes (2 for each child) and that means I spent $6 total on this gift. Each tube has 15 bracelets and connectors in it.