When you’re a kid, you wish everyday could be Disney day.
Growing up in Southern California, it kind of was for me.
Disney kept life magical.
Except when relatives would visit in August and want to go to the Magic Kingdom. On a Saturday. In August. Nothing magical about melting in the heat to only get on three rides.
But other than that, pretty magical. You’d get the resident pass and go all the time. Fireworks, parades, roller coasters, pirates, and Christmas Disney style.
But right now there’s a pandemic going on and while Disney World is open, Disneyland isn’t and most of us are just looking to survive.
In the meantime, if your kids are jonesing for Mickey time but you’re also not going because of COVID-19 or it’s just not in the budget right now, here’s some fun things you can do to bring Disney home.
1. Make dole whip
You don’t even need a copycat recipe because the good folks at Disney felt bad for us when the pandemic started, so they released some of their iconic recipes including the dole whip. Dance to the Tiki Room song or watch a Youtube video of it.
2. Watch a Disney movie.
How is that different from what the kids want to do every day, you ask?
Make it an event!
Cook up some Disney-inspired churro popcorn and dress up as your favorite characters. Google behind-the-scenes facts about the movie and create some true or false questions to be asked throughout the film or at the end, depending on your kids’ personality. (Some will freak if you stop the movie, others may get restless.)
Winner gets to wear the Mickey ears!
3. Karaoke time
Disney Karaoke, anyone?
If you don’t have a microphone, use a whisk or a wooden spoon and turn on the flashlights on your cell phones to wave as the concert-goers.
Great singing is not required. Minnie Mouse ears, on the other hand, are a definite must. I don’t know how this company makes Disney-inspired dress-up clothes and Disney-esque ears so affordable, but they do, so yes—buy the ears.
You can wear them to the park when you go again, too, and save a pretty penny.
4. Play a game
Play a board game based on the Magic Kingdom.
Make sure to pick an age-appropriate game that the kids can actually do. If you have big gaps between ages, switch off between the easier and more difficult games, and have the younger children be on the parents’ and older kids’ teams. Make a night of it and serve Mickey pancakes or waffles dusted with powdered sugar. Yum!
5. Play Pirates
Who doesn’t love the Pirates of the Caribbean? Learn the song, dress up like pirates, have sword fights with safe, non-injury promoting foam swords and create clues that lead to a buried treasure. You can always watch the movie, too, if the kids are old enough.
If you’re creative and go for it, you can make Disney at home even more memorable than the Magic Kingdom itself. Take lots of pictures and videos. You won’t want to forget Dad dressed up in full pirate gear singing Yo, Ho! and the epic Frozen trivia battle.