the domestic tales of four sisters

DIY Disney Vacation Countdown with Activities

There is no shortage of ideas for Disney trip countdowns.  A quick Pinterest search produces plenty of ideas from the very simple to the extremely elaborate many of which I have pinned to my Disney Pinterest Board.  When I started planning our countdown I had an idea of what I wanted to do, but wasn’t exactly sure how I was going to execute it.  After some research I came up with an idea which was actually a combination of several ideas I had seen and here is the result, my DIY Disney Vacation Countdown PLUS a list of fun activities to do along the way!

A Disney vacation countdown idea including a large list of activities to do along the way.

I like the idea of a board or sign that hangs in the house leading up to the trip.  It’s a constant reminder of the fun that is to be had and definitely helps to keep the excitement level up.  I did a very simple version of this for our last trip which I shared here.  I decided this time, it was go big or go home. 😉

A Disney vacation countdown idea including a huge list of activities to do along the way.

I pulled from my previous Disney trips hoard to create this board using maps that I had saved and a postcard of the resort where we’ll be staying.  It took me about an hour and I was pretty pumped with the result.  Tip: You can download the Disney font, it’s called Waltograph.

The board is now hanging in the kitchen (thank you Command strips) and will slowly be covered with 45 Mickey heads each bearing the number of our countdown days.  They were a FREE printable from 123 Homeschool 4 Me!

A Disney vacation countdown idea that includes a huge list of activities to do along the way.

Now, I could have (and maybe should have) stopped there.  The thing is, my oldest is 9 (almost 10, yikes!) and the next one 7 (8 right after the New Year) so based on our every-other-year plan for Disney, the next time we go they will be pushing 10 and 12!

UGH, just typing that makes me want to curl in the fetal position and cry.

Anyhoo, more than likely the next time we head to Disney I’ll have two semi-hormonal preteen/teenagers. *shudder*  But, they’re still little now, so I’m milking this one for all it’s worth!

What do I mean by that? Well… we have an activity for each day of our countdown.  Some of them are kinda big (day 45 was yesterday and we went to Disney on Ice), but others are small, and a few others are little gifts for the trip. (*May contain affiliate links*)  I just came to the conclusion one day that I wanted to enjoy the magic with them and make it last as long as possible.  I probably got carried away but they grow up so fast so over the top it is!

Here is the list of activities for the countdown.  Some are repeated ex. Disney Movie nights are planned for every Friday in the countdown and we have multiple ‘print’ sessions which are going to be turned into a book for them to enjoy during our 36 hours in car on the way to and home from Disney.

So, here we go!!!

  1. Disney On Ice + Minnie Headbands & Buzz Hat to wear. (This was awesome and just worked out by accident.  If you can make something like this fit in your countdown I recommend doing it, it really got everyone very excited for the trip!)
  2. Print Disney coloring pages.
  3. Disney Movie Night
  4. Make a list of everyone’s Top 5 Must Do’s for each park.
  5. Play Disney Eye Found It Game
  6. Bags & Anti-bac Wipes *gift* (found Minnie/Mickey bags for them to carry in the parks and the Disney themed Anti-bac wipes were at the Dollar Tree)
  7. Print Road Trip Games
  8. Autograph Book *gift* (For this trip I purchased this Encyclopedia of Disney Characters for the family to share.  We’re going to have each character sign ‘their’ page.)
  9. Write letters to Disney Characters to let them know where coming! (I’ve read that you sometimes get a signed postcard in return so we’re going to try it.  If it doesn’t get here before we leave it will be a nice surprise after we return home.)
  10. Disney Movie Night
  11. Pressed Pennies (We’re going to use this tutorial and M&M Minis containers to make pressed penny containers)
  12. Pressed Pennies (We’re going to go through the house to find shiny pennies perfect for pressing and spend some time cleaning others that are close.)
  13. Red Minnie Headbands & Miles Water Bottle (Disney Store) *gift*
  14. Print ideas of things to do waiting in line (more here) and think of some on our own.
  15. Disney Journals (the ladies) & Sticker Book (little man) *gift* (Note: I linked to the journals we purchased which is currently $50! DO NOT pay that! But, if the price changes I believe we paid less than $10 each for them. They’re super cute and my girls are going to love filling them out during our trip but I wouldn’t pay more than $12 for them.  Also, I chose that sticker book because it’s perfect for my kid.  There are many others to choose from so take a look around and find something perfect for your crew!)
  16. Print Coloring Pages
  17. Make ‘Would You Rather’ Game for the car ride (and waiting in line).
  18. Disney Snacks for Parks (we’re going to go to the store together but you should also purchase these in advance and give them as a gift)
  19. Make Mickey Mouse pancakes
  20. Disney Cards *gift* and play together (picked these up at the Dollar Tree)
  21. Make ID cards (Very simple with a small current school photo (the one meant for sharing), their name, out names and phone numbers.  Going to put it in the bags they’ll be carrying.)
  22. Print Road Games
  23. Felt Pictures *gift* (Found these at the Dollar Tree)
  24. Disney Movie Night
  25. Go see Disney Live (Another happy accident with dates but I’ll take it!)
  26. Print route maps to fill out during trip.
  27. Print Disney coloring pages.
  28. Make Mousekeeping envelopes for daily tips.
  29. Kooky Faces Books for the road trip (I got mine at Walmart but they’re very similar to these from Melissa & Doug and there are ‘boy’ and ‘girl’ friendly themes.)
  30. Road Trip Book (This is going to be all those printed pages bound into a book for the road trip.)
  31. Disney Movie Night
  32. Go to Sight & Sound with Gramma & Pappy (Yet another happy accident.)
  33. Play Disney Scene It.
  34. Disney Talk: What to do if you get lost.
  35. Make labels for their clothes for each day. (Probably a simple version of this.)
  36. Make a list of what characters everyone wants to meet.
  37. Travel Toothbrushes & Toothpaste *gift* (Still need to get these :/ but am planning to hit up the Dollar Tree)
  38. Gather movies and games for the road trip.
  39. Cleaning Day (It’s a necessary evil but we’ll also probably decorate for Christmas when we’re done because we arrive home December 3rd.)
  40. Packing Day!
  41. Play Disney Memory
  42. Have Mickey Mouse Cupcakes for snack.
  43. Travel to Grandma & PopPop’s house for Thanksgiving!
  44. Happy Thanksgiving!
  45. Road Trip Box (I’ll put this together but it usually contains a few new activity books and games along with some favorites from home.)
The last few days are going to be a bit of a whirlwind because of traveling for Thanksgiving, we’ll actually be leaving from my in-laws’ house for the trip.  It’s going to be crazy and fun and exhausting and, most importantly, a very special time with my family soaking up every minute of their childhood.  Do you have any ‘Disney Countdown’ ideas? I’d love to hear them!
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