Disney with young children?

Last week I was at a conference held at Disney World. We didn't spend any time in the parks, it was just at a Disney Hotel. Well, it was just enough Disney to really make me want to return with the kids for a vacation. I am a HUGE Disney fan and haven't taken the kids yet just because I felt like they were too young, but looking at the guests that were in our hotel I'm thinking maybe we could have a really great time even at this age!!

Have you been to Disney World? Have you been with kids 5 and under?? Does anyone have any great tips or tricks or suggestions for me before I start planning?

BethSummerville, South Carolina
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    We are 6ish hours away, but I found out last week that the drive is SUPER easy.
      I have never been, I plan on taking my daughter there someday, maybe when she turns 5.
        We took my ODD for her 2nd birthday (we were there while she turned 2). It was really fun experiencing it with her, but it can be overwhelming, too. At that age, I wouldn't try to do more than 3-4 days of parks if you're there an entire week.

        That said, we just went at the beginning of this month with my 5.5 year old and 3.5 year old. That was AMAZING! Getting to experience Disney through them was fantastic. My ODD is big enough to do the larger rides (Space Mountain, Expedition Everest, etc). YDD isn't too sure about rides yet, so we were still able to do things with her.

        My biggest piece of advice: DON'T over-plan your visit! There is SO much to do at each park, and that alone is overwhelming. Don't feel like you have to do it all in this one trip, because instead of enjoying it, you will all be miserable. We picked 2-3 "must do" things for each park (and we did Magic Kingdom for two days because of all the new Fantasyland things), but other than that, we just did what we wanted, and rested when we wanted.

        It's a LOT of fun, especially when they are so young and so into certain characters or movies. The look on my ODD's face when she met Belle made everything worth it. Just for that one moment.
          It was horribly, horribly hot & humid when we were there at the beginning of May (97+ the whole week)! We went in November before, and that was much better, in my opinion (but I hate being hot!). We took a double stroller and I would never recommend going without one for under 5. There is tons of stroller parking available, so it wasn't really an inconvenience for us.

          I guess the big thing is that, at that age (5 and under), you need to go with the mindset that this isn't for THEM. It's for YOU.. These are YOUR memories you're making, not theirs. We know we will make multiple trips with our kids. If Disney is going to be a once-in-a-lifetime (or once-in-a-childhood) trip, then yes, maybe wait until they will remember it.

          But there is just something to be said for seeing your toddler or preschooler melting when they get to meet their "person" (princess, mouse or otherwise). That magic just isn't the same at 8, 11, 13.
          About Beth
          Current: Summerville, South Carolina
          Birth: September 18
          On Moms.com since: Aug 18, 2013
          obsessed with babywearing, cloth diapering, and breastfeeding (but not judgmental about those that aren't). I'm a SAHM that works. Loves cupcakes, kittens, and glitter; hates spiders, housework and pessimism.