The Best Laid Plans… Why You Have to Be Flexible When Planning Your Vacation

Disney PrincessesWe first traveled to Walt Disney World as a family back in 2007 when my son was 11 months old and my daughter was 2.  Although my son was too little to really enjoy the trip, my daughter had a great time – especially meeting all of the Disney characters.  I wasn’t sure how she’d react, so we started our vacation with breakfast at Akershus in Epcot because I thought the princesses would be the least intimidating.  But I had no need to worry, because she loved all of the characters – at the Crystal Palace, the Hollywood and Vine, and throughout the parks.

So, when I planned our vacation for the following year, I really wanted to get us a reservation at Cinderella’s Royal Table, located in Cinderella Castle in the Magic Kingdom.  I booked our breakfast right at the 180 day point, and I was excited for my daughter to see the princesses.  I thought it would be the highlight of our trip.

Except for some reason, my then 3-year old daughter wasn’t feeling it.

disney princesses

I like to think this is her McKayla Maroney impression.

I don’t know why my daughter looked and seemed so disinterested.  She was excited the entire trip, but just wasn’t in a great mood that morning.  It’s hard to know how a 3-year old will behave, and I was extremely disappointed that she wasn’t enjoying the special breakfast I planned.  Now, 5-years and countless Disney trips later, I actually cherish this memory more than I would have if she’d smiled in the pictures.

As you plan your vacations, you may have a picture in your mind of how everything will go.  And, it’s a very rare occasion when things will actually go exactly as planned.  But, those memories are all still precious – so plan as best as possible and then relax and enjoy your vacation!

Related  Putting on the Ritz (Or When a Luxury Hotel Disappoints Then Makes it Up)


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  1. Jodi,
    Another great article. We all suffer with some degree of planning syndrome weather it is over planning or under planning. As you mentioned, being flexible and enjoying each day of your vacation is the key without being distracted by small inconveniences and deviations from the originally planned itinerary. We go to Orlando very often though not purely for visiting parks. We do visit one or two parks and the remaining days are spent working around our vacation homes. So when we went last December, Magic Kingdom was not even considered as the kids are little older now. But, our pre-teen daughter loved the Dumbo ride in Magic Kingdom! She said she remembers it from when she was six and wanted to go again! Had we not been flexible with which parks we can visit, she would have missed that fun.

    Thanks again for a nice post.

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About Jodi Grundig

Jodi Grundig has loved traveling since she was a little girl. She started blogging in 2007 on her popular review site Mom's Favorite Stuff and after doing quite a bit of family traveling, decided to launch her own travel blog. Jodi resides in Massachusetts with her husband, nine-year old son, eleven-year old daughter, and Havanese dog. Read More…