Our experience: Disney Epcot During Food and Wine.

We loved Epcot, the first day we went. Our daughter had so much fun and we have so many great memories with Characters from that day:

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We loved food and wine during the weekday, HOWEVER! When it came to our Sunday dinner we were attempting to go, and it was not worth it with a Toddler. WE DO NOT RECOMMEND FOOD AND WINE ON THE WEEKENDS WITH A TODDLER! We ended up saying forget it and left, it was so crowded. If it was just the two of us, no big deal. With the stroller however, and the crowds, it was 100% stressful. Now we know not all people are this way but most people were highly intoxicated and not paying any attention, Chris got a beer spilled on him. Now if you don’t want to go to world showcase, on the weekend during Food and Wine, the rides near the front were not long waits at all. If you want to do Food and Wine with a toddler though, go during the week. Crowds were smaller, and the stroller wasn’t an inconvenience.

That is our own personal opinion and experience and our recommendation. We had so much fun at Epcot on our first day there. Which was a Wednesday, lower crowds (Still crowded) but longest line we waited in was to meet Anna and Elsa. We fast passed Frozen, living with the land, and Spaceship Earth. We single Ridered Test Track and it worked out amazing. Our meet and Greet with Minnie and Pluto was a special meet and greet for Disney Chase Card holders. We had dinner at the Biergarten which was fantastic. The entertainment portion was a blast even though Alice slept through the whole thing.

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That is all for today!

Until next time remember: The best is yet to come

What we are most excited for

This is a different kind of post. When we started this blog we wanted to help people with vacation planning and with our Disney Trip quickly approaching we have focused and given a lot of information on that. The next few blogs are going to be our own opinions on some of the stuff we are going to be doing while at Disney and what we are looking forward to at each park. We are going to be experiencing this all with Alice for the first time and we are so excited to see her reaction to things. This post is about what we are most excited for overall while we are at Disney.

  1. Meeting Mickey and Minnie: Alice has a love for Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. We are so excited to be meeting Mickey and Minnie! Although we have no clue how she is going to react to the big characters we are excited to see her reaction good or bad.
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    (Picture credit to Disney Photopass)
  2. Meeting the Princesses: We were able to snag reservations at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall on our first day, so meeting up to 5 princesses is going to be amazing. Alice loves all the Princesses, and will sit and watch them for hours. We have Fastpasses at Magic Kingdom as well to meet the princesses and this is a reaction we can’t wait to film and get tons of pictures of.  (Hint for the Not So scary Halloween family costume theme is below)
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  3. Unplugging for the weekend: Other than on Instagram, we will be unplugged for the weekend. We have never done this before and we are looking forward to it. No texting, no Facebook, no emails, and sorry everyone no blog. We may do a small update if we get a chance but we have decided to leave the laptop at home. We are going to be spending this time as a family, if you want to see updates please add us on Instagram: Wethebaughers3. Why are we updating Instagram and nothing else? Job purposes, and we will leave it at that.
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  4. Her first rides: Other than at Hershey and on the Merry Go Round Alice has never been on a real ride before. She loved the Hershey Chocolate tour so we are thinking she will love the rides. These are moments even though she is only one, we are excited to see her reaction to now, and then again next year when we go with family.
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  5. Trying all sorts of new foods: This goes for all three, we have plans to try lots of new restaurants and food kiosks while we are there. We are going to be at Disney for the Food and Wine festival but after much research we have found some amazing foods, we still haven’t tried and are on a must try list. We will post a blog later of our Top 10 must try foods another day.10849871_406825156138846_2761363229180746251_n
    (French Onion Soup at Chefs De France)
  6. Spending time as a family: With both of our jobs, and the way the schedules work out, weekends are generally the only time we have as a family. With that though comes lots of housework, and your basic to do list. We are looking forward to having sometime together away from all that and also reconnecting as a family. We feel at times we have lost touch and this is going to be a great chance to reconnect.
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That is all for today! We are super excited we are 6 days away! Stay tuned for more to come before we leave!

Until next time remember: The best is yet to come!

10 Things you should buy BEFORE your trip to Disney.

When thinking about Disney and the already high costs you are paying for: room, food, tickets, etc… parents especially would love to save some money on things that may otherwise cost an arm and a leg at Disney. So here are the 10 things we think you should buy BEFORE your trip to Disney.

10) Sunscreen: This may seem obvious but we highly recommend buying sunscreen. Yes if you forget it Disney does sell it, but you are going to be paying higher prices for less. So buy the sunscreen before and buy extra just in case.

9) Ponchos: We always bring our own ponchos to Disney. Amazon even sells Disney ones, that you can buy and have shipped to your house before hand. It does rain at Disney and we have yet to go when it is rain free.

8) Gum: If you are a gum chewer, buy gum before Disney and bring it with you because…THEY DO NOT SELL IT. It is to help prevent people from sticking gum in undesirable places. So if you want it, you have to bring it.

7) Extra Snacks: We have the meal plan and get 4 snacks per day between the two of us. That may seem like a lot but not when you have a growing toddler. We bought snacks for her before hand that we will be bringing to the park to save on spending the extra. Also if you don’t have snack credits from a meal plan, the cost of snacks can add up So consider buying ahead of time.

6) A reusable water bottle: You can get a free cup of Ice water from any of the quick service locations that serve soda. That will only tide you over for so long though. A reusable and refillable water bottle is the perfect thing and you can always ask for a cup of ice to refill it and get water from a drinking fountain. Don’t get stuck paying for a bottle of water.

5) Disney Shirts: We have a store by us that is called BoxLunch and we love them. They have tons of Disney shirts and they always seem to be having a sale. We recommend if you want to wear something Disney to your trip buy it beforehand. Some shirts can cost upwards of $30 at Disney. This also goes for kids Disney shirts, Kohls, JCPenny, etc… all sell Disney shirts. Buy before and save your wallet the extra money.

4) Costumes: This is for little kids, if you’re over 12 you are not allowed to wear a costume at Disney, doesn’t mean you can’t DisneyBound (checkout Pinterest for those ideas) but the dress up is really for little kids, with the exception of Halloween. The Disney store sells costumes cheaper than the actual parks. Also check out Spirit Halloween Store, Walmart.com, Amazon, and Party City. They all have Disney costumes for kids cheaper than the parks.

3) Toys: Toys are a great souvenir but, you don’t want to  cave into buying toys 100 different times.  We went to the Disney Store during one of their big sales and picked up toys that you can get at the parks, for half the price and hid them in our closet and are bringing them with us as a surprise. This isn’t going to stop your kids from asking for everything but it can help with cutting down costs. We also recommend giving a budget for each kid.

2) Any baby necessities: Diapers, wipes, bottles, formula, etc… This may seem obvious but you do not want to forget this stuff. The baby care center does sell these but for a lot more. So you want to make sure that you have enough of these to get through your trip. You can always get Amazon packages sent to your hotel a couple days before you arrive or pack enough to get you through the first day and have some shipped to you; this saves room in your luggage and helps you avoid paying extra for a small pack.

1) GIFT CARDS: Let us explain, buying gift cards beforehand can help you budget better. We really don’t like taking all our cards to Disney with us. This helps cut down on spending and helps give everyone a budget. You can buy gift cards in $25, $50, and $100. We have seen BJs carry the one you can load up to $500, or more, on them. Otherwise this is a great way to say to your kids once your card is empty your out. It gives your kids some responsibility and allows your wallet to stay more full. If you have a TargetRed Card you can get 15% off your purchase in Disney gift cards because they are considered entertainment not money.

All these things are great to buy before hand to save you a little extra money at the park.

Honorable mention to disposable placemats. We went to Walmart where they were $3.55 for 10 and they are Disney themed. They stick to the table and help the wonderful cast members at the restaurants you eat at have less of a mess to clean up. They also work for any quick service restaurant that has tables. Just something to consider.

Until next time remember: The best is yet to come!

What is in our Travel Diaper Bag?

We decided to do a post on what is in our travel diaper bag for our upcoming Disney Trip! This bag is packed and ready to go for our flight and first day at Disney. Under each picture will be a description on what we packed and why.

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First up is our Bag this is our Swiss backpack that we got years ago at Sams Club. Chris used it throughout college and even at his job. This bag is super comfy, can fit lots of stuff in it, and meets all of the airline requirements for a bag.

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Next up is our family binder. This holds ALL of our emergency information, trip information, Alice’s Proof of Age, everything! Now you may think we are crazy for having this but hear us out; this binder is for any emergency situations that may come up, for example, car accident, lost child, etc. All of our information is right here for anyone who may need it. It says who they have permission to call and release information too and gives them important allergy information for all of us.
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Extra clothing for Alice. We have two outfits here, one is a basic outfit and the other is her Alice in Wonderland dress. We are hoping to meet Alice while there and do plan to change Alice into this costume to meet Alice. I mean who doesn’t want a picture of Alice with Alice dressed as Alice? Confused yet?

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Extra shirts for us, we have gotten rained out twice before and were freezing without a change of clothing. So we made sure not to forget extra clothes this trip. We also have two words for you SPIT UP! Yes even at Alice’s age she has puked or spit up on occasion we don’t want to smell that all day on our clothes.

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These are the items from the very top of the bag. From left to right and then top. We have two portable chargers for our phones, a spare battery for Alice’s stroller fan, pacifier wipes, a special toy and treat for extremely long lines, an empty ziplock bag, and a Moana tsum tsum. Why two portable chargers you ask, we have them and then we are guaranteed a charged charger each day versus waking up and realizing our one and only is still dead. The spare battery incase her fan dies and pacifier cleaners so we can clean a dropped pacifier. A special toy and snack for long lines, we talked about this unsure if we were going to do it. In the end the thought that this could help major meltdowns was a reason for us to give it a shot, we will let you know if it works! A ziplock bag for wet clothes, cellphone protection from water rides, or to hold leftover snacks. Moana is for our flight, she loves Moana and tsum tsums so we figured this would be a fun little surprise for the flight.

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From left to right, top to bottom: Sunglasses, a clean sippy cup, Water Wow! board and pen, and two pouches. These are all really self explanatory, the Water Wow! is our highly recommended item for flights; little mess, lots of fun, and magical!

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Diapers and wipes, again self explanatory. We will say this, make sure you pack plenty of them! We have eight diapers and a new pack of wipes going with us because we don’t know if our hotel will be ready when we get there and we may be going right to the park!

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From left to right then top: Snack cup, glow sticks, washcloth, sunscreen, pacifier clip, placemats that stick to the table, hat, and spoons. The snack cup has three compartments and we will fill it with her favorite types of crackers. Glow Sticks are to attach to our stroller! We want to make sure we can find our stroller and it sticks out even at night. Why a washcloth? On extremely hot days this is great to get wet and help little one cool off. Sunscreen to help prevent burns and a pacifier clip to help not lose the pacifier. We guarantee we will still lose the pacifier. Placemats, these are great, they stick to the table and can be tossed after a meal. We have staff at restaurants thank us for doing this because it saves them a lot of time not having to scrub after a sticky messy kids. The hat to protect her head. Our own spoons, this is for if we go to the baby care centers at the parks to feed Alice. We looked into disposable spoons but honestly these work just as well and if we lose them we aren’t heartbroken.

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Next is Blanky. This is a lightweight muslin blanket we are bringing for multiple reasons. One is for sun coverage it clips on with binder clips really easily to our stroller. Second something to keep her a little warmer in colder rides. Finally the most important something for her to snuggle. She loves these types of blankets to cuddle when she goes to sleep and will use it rather than her lovey.

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Finally and it probably is least surprising that it is Alice in wonderland, is our wallet. This holds all of our Disney gift cards, our tips for restaurants, our credit cards that we do bring and our IDs. Sammie doesn’t carry a purse she puts everything in this wallet in the backpack.

Some things we will pack that are not pictured:

  • Stroller fan
  • Ponchos
  • Pacifiers
  • Bottles- Alice is on the Nuk Sippy cup with a soft nipple similar to a bottle so we need that for her to drink milk from on the plane.
  • Milk- We buy Nesquik milk from BJs in the bulk packs that are non-refrigerated so that we have milk for the flight and then we budgeted milk at the hotel and at restaurants into our planning.

Until next time remember: The best is yet to come!

Tips For Flying With A Infant/Toddler

Our upcoming flight will not be our first flight with Alice but it will be our longest flight so far with her. Although a two hour flight doesn’t seem like a lot for us it will probably feel like eternity. So we wanted to share some tips and tricks to make flying with a toddler easier. We are going to break this into sections: What to do when you arrive at the airport, Getting through security, picking where you want to sit, and what to bring on flight.

Airport Arrival: We are crazy and arrive upwards of 2 to 3 hours before our flight with Alice. This is because we fly with Southwest and since we don’t purchase her a ticket we have to get her “Boarding pass” day of. This is something you have to do before you go through security. Always have a proof of age with you, we carry a copy of Alice’s shot records as our proof. The last time we flew with her we were in line waiting to get her ticket for 45 minutes, we still had to go through security so always make sure to get there early and check with your flight company before to find out what their rules are for lap flying infants and toddlers are. Also make sure to check any bags, get your boarding passes loaded up on your phone or have the paper copy in hand, and have out your ID.

Getting through Security: We decided to spend the extra money and went ahead and got TSA precheck certified. We can honestly say that if you can afford it, DO IT. Your kids up until 13 go through with you at no extra charge and it is good for 5 years. This also allows for you to not waste time pulling out all of your 3-1-1’s and electronics from the bags. If you don’t have this option or it is too late to get it before your next flight here are some helpful tips to get through security.

  • Make sure to have all your electronics ready to come out of the bag when you get up there. We put all of ours (with the exception of the laptop) in a ziplock bag to make it easy to pull out and put in a bin. Most airports are requiring kindles and other small electronics to be pulled out now so ziplock bags are a huge time saver.
  • Take your shoes off right before you even get up there, it saves you so much time and less struggling with a toddler while you try to get your shoes off. If your toddler isn’t walking put their shoes in a bag ahead of time and let them go in their socks.
  • You can bring a full sippy cup of milk or water with you (at least BWI has allowed us to as well as Rochester International Airport). They check it quickly and give it right back. If you want to bring closed packaged containers of milk, some airports require someone to be patted down others just put them through a scanner really quick and send you on your way.
  • Some airports make you fold up your stroller if it is small enough to fit through the x-ray machine. They made us with our umbrella stroller, so be prepared to do that and to hold your child through the x-ray machine.
  • Our biggest tip is if you are flying alone and going through security alone don’t be afraid to ask for help! When Sammie flew the first time it was by herself and so many people were willing to help hold Alice or fold her stroller up for her. TSA even offered to help her pack her bag back up.
  • Remember to be kind to the TSA, they have a stressful job and LOTS of people making it difficult for them. The nicer you are the smoother it goes we promise

Picking where you want to sit on the flight. For us we have to check in 24 hours before and seating is open. There are no assigned seats on Southwest, not all airlines do this so if you do have to pick a seat we recommend window and aisle if you child is lap sitting. It is less likely someone is going to take that middle seat. Now if it is a full flight and someone took that middle or you are by yourself you have to choose where the best spot is for baby/toddler. Window has more privacy for breastfeeding moms, we though think that the aisle is the best spot. Alice had to be bopped a few times and changed once and aisle gives you that access. Now with Southwest it is no assigned seats you pick a seat based on you check in number, but with toddlers and infants you can board after the A’s board so if you are in the B or C boarding group this is a great thing to take advantage of.

What to Bring on Flight: We made the mistake the first time and over packed. This time we have it a little more under control on what to bring.

  • Milk/bottles/sippy cups: They don’t give you a lot of milk on flights and that last time I was at BWI none of the little shops had any milk besides starbucks and a couple of the restaurants. Horizon sells milk in the prepackaged containers at the grocery stores, that haven’t been refrigerated and those are a great option for flights. Also make sure to have enough bottles for the length of your flight. The water on the plane is highly treated with chemicals so rinsing the bottle and reusing it on a flight is a big no no. So bring enough bottles/ sippy cups to get you through.
  • Extra clothes: We have been lucky enough to not have Alice poop through clothing (KNOCK ON WOOD) on flights but I have heard horror stories about long flights. Always pack extra clothes especially if you have the carryon luggage to do so. In our bag for Disney we have two extra outfits for her. Look for our what’s in our flight diaper bag to learn more about that.
  • Snacks: We have some of Alice’s favorite snacks packed and ready to go. Now check with your airport and airline on the rules of pouches. Our pouches technically exceed the 3.4 oz rule by .1 ounces. We called and were told that depending on the person they may be okay with it. It is baby food and a lot of time I have seen TSA be more lenient on that but don’t go CRAZY. We packed 2 for the flight and that was it. The extras we needed went in a suitcase and will meet us at Disney.
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  • Toys: We used the rule of toys as keep them exciting, something new, and not messy. We love the WaterWorks coloring boards, you fill the pen with water, or in Alice’s case just sticks it in her mouth and paint on the board. The color magically appears and when it dries they can do it again. We also picked up some cute Disney themed toys I will show them in the What’s in our Flight diaper bag blog. That is it for toys, we have a 2 hour flight and honestly you don’t want to pack too many toys.
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  • Kindle Fire: For us when all else fails pull out the kindle fire. We have downloaded a number of movies onto it for her to watch as a last resort. Now not everyone on the flight wants to listen to Moana or another movie. We recommend the toddler headphones for older kids and honestly we keep the volume low for Alice since she won’t wear the headphones. We also let people around us know that if the movie is bothering them let us know and we can turn the volume off. Most people have said no worries and it is fine.
  • DIAPERS AND WIPES: Make sure you have enough diapers and wipes. We also throw in dog poop bags incase Alice makes a stinky. You want to make sure you pack enough of these in your carry on and travel bag because you don’t know how long you are going to be waiting for luggage. So be prepared, no one likes a diaper rash. You also don’t want to be stuck paying airline prices for a small thing of diapers and wipes.

Honestly as long as you’re trying your hardest and putting in effort if things go wrong, most people will forgive you.
One last piece of Key advice: Suck on the way up and at landing. It is most important at landing for kids to help with ear pressure. Bottle, Pacifier, chewing food, breastfeeding, all great options!

That is it for today! We hope this gives you some helpful information on flying with infants and toddlers.

Until next time remember: The best if yet to come!

 

An Exciting Announcement

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That is right! We have been given the wonderful opportunity to go to Walt Disney World this fall!! We are so excited and have been planning this trip like crazy over the last month. While traveling with a one year old may seem like a lot for Walt Disney World we are beyond grateful to be able to go and share our experience with everyone. While there we will be visiting all four parks, attending Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party, and experiencing the Food and Wine Festival. This will also be Alice’s first ever visit. We have some exciting posts that will be coming out as we prepare to go to take this adventure with our one year old.

Some future posts will include:

  • What’s in our bags
  • Flying tips and tricks
  • Planning your Disney Trip
  • Our plans
  • Daily experiences with what worked and didn’t work

Plus much more!
Stay tuned for our next post as we go into detail about planning for a Disney Trip. Thanks for stopping by and remember the best is yet to come!