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Jim Croce once crooned “If I could save time in a bottle the first thing that I’d like to do . . .” I can’t say these lyrics were running through my head at the end of my recent Disney vacation, but I know that many Disney fans could change this phrase to “If I could save Disney magic in a bottle the first think that I’d like to do . . .” A challenge that all Disney enthusiasts have is a desire to be able to experience the magic of Disney even when we are not at the parks or the resorts. That “magic” we feel can even be unexplainable or hard to describe but all of us know when we discover things that bring the “magic” back. My family and I just had one of the greatest vacations of our lives this summer at Walt Disney World filled with memories that will last our lifetime. Unfortunately it had to come to an end, and as we boarded that plane to go home my mind immediately began to wander on how could we take that “magic” home with us. Here are just a few things I have found have helped us relive those memories we do not want to soon forget.
A simple, yet rewarding way, is to organize your photos and videos that you took on your recent trip. If you used Disney PhotoPass then you have a wealth of options to help you organize your photos with many special Disney touches. We used this option to take most of our family photos in front of the park icons and special places we treasured as a family. One drawback could be the cost of the PhotoPass and so many of us choose to shoot our own photos. So if your are anything like us that still will leave you with hundreds of photos and hours of video to sort. I encourage you to not look at this as a chore but as a chance to recover those precious moments on your Disney journey. We loved looking at each photo over and over again and each time the joy of those moments came flooding back. I loved using my MacBook to create photo albums and slide shows from each day of our trip. It was a fun challenge to pick the music to go with the photos and find that perfect fit. I am still working and tweaking my albums and in the process reliving all the good times we had.
Another idea I had was to buy small gifts from the parks and give them away after returning home. I bought enough of these to last close to a year, as I give them away once a month. These can be small things like Vinylmation figures all the way to shirts or hats. These simple gifts instantly provide the spark of joy you felt in the parks on vacation. It is also fun to keep your family guessing as what might be next and it is awesome to find the perfect moment to give those gifts. It is also easy to find park gifts online at DisneyParks.com. Things you didn’t have money or room for can be ordered and given at just the right moment. As is usual in most cases it is often not the amount of money spent but the thought that goes behind the gift that matters most.
Finally another idea I have found that really helps relive the moments of your trip is to begin planning that next possible trip. Even if the trip is years away, the idea of returning back to your favorite parks or resort can be enough to bring back that magic from time to time. I know with my kids even though the trip might be months if not years away just the thought of returning is enough to keep them going. Ordering the maps or watching the videos when you need that Disney fix can put you, if even for a little while, in the middle of the Disney places you love the most. We love to check up on what will be new the next time we visit and I follow the blogs and podcasts that transport me just when I need it. It is amazing sometimes how easy it can be to hear or see the places we miss the most.
I know that there are many more ways that all of us can keep that Disney vacation in our minds, and I think that is what makes Disney so unique for so many people. There is never just one way to relive the Disney things we love the most and as I have connected into the Disney community I have enjoyed sharing and learning from others as well. I know that as I search for ways to relive the “magic” of Disney that only brings me closer to my next visit and a whole new set of memories I will get a chance to cherish for years to come.