I’m going to Disney for Christmas this year! It’s my first time at Disney in over two years and my first time at Disney for Christmas. I’m sure I’ll be writing you again with some Christmas related questions… but for now… I used to be an Annual Passholder until my family moved from Georgia to Chicago! Help! I’m going through a serious Disney withdrawal! I’ve already read your book twice! What else can I do to get a “taste” of Disney until my trip! I keep planning everything, and then re-planning and planning again. I need a new hobby!!
I totally feel your pain! My family goes once a year during the Christmas season. I go through two stages of withdrawal. The first I classify as “PDD – Post Disney Depression.” My “Post Disney Depression” usually starts on our last day. I go through a “it went too fast” stage. When I get home, it usually takes me about a week to get back into the swing of things. I wish I was kidding. The gorgeous weather in Disney the past two years hasn’t helped, either. Nothing is worse than going from 80-degree weather to temperatures in the 20s and 30s. My PDD eventually subsides, and my anticipation kicks in around late June. About a week before my family books our ADRs, I start to ease into Disney mode. I even start planning out my meals at the restaurants!
Honestly, writing is my biggest “outlet” for my Disney withdrawal. I love to write about Disney and usually write an in-depth trip report each year on Disboards. Forums are another great outlet – especially DisBoards. I’ve been posting on DisBoards for years. I love to go on and read trip reports from other users and give my input. It’s nice to discuss (and sometimes debate) Disney with like-minded people.
This blog is a hobby. I don’t get paid to answer questions or write foodie blogs. My Christmas Guide is free of charge. I do it because I’m passionate about Disney and really enjoy writing and talking about it.
Another way I get a taste of Disney is through podcasts. For a while, my favorite podcast was Inside The Magic with Ricky Brigante. Since his 500th episode, Ricky has taken a step back from podcasting. His older podcasts still serve as a great resource, but he now only records new podcasts when there is news to report. Ricky’s hiatus led me to discover new podcasts, such as the Be Our Guest Podcast. The podcast is led by Mike Rahlman, a teacher from Missouri who loves Disney. It’s a nice roundtable discussion with travel agents who are knowledgeable and equally passionate about Disney World. The discussions range from reader questions to trip reports, with a lot of useful Disney news and tips sprinkled in. My other go-to is WDW Radio. WDW Radio is hosted by the infamous Lou Mongello. Lou is the most recognized name in the Disney podcast and guide world. His podcasts are a great resource for the diehard Disney fan. I like his podcasts because they provide deeper look into the history and story behind many of Disney’s lands and landmarks. Lou is also a huge foodie and will often record restaurant reviews.
I am always reading up on Disney and keeping up to date with the latest news. Disney Parks Blog is hosted by Disney and posts press releases and park news. If you want a more opinionated view, Inside the Magic has a great blog, DisBoards is a great resource, and my favorite blog for Disney food is Disney Food Blog.
Last but not least, I get through each day by listening to some Disney music. Some people enjoy the music from Disney movies, but I love park music. Nothing transports me to Disney World faster than listening to the Magic Kingdom entrance loop or the soundtrack from Wishes. Mike Rahlman also hosts Magical Mouse Radio, which is constantly playing nostalgic Disney tunes. You can also find plenty of playlists on YouTube, SoundCloud and a Google search for “Disney Park music” will return pages worth of results.
Don’t overdo it with the planning! I agree that planning out your vacation is instrumental in ensuring a successful Christmas vacation, but don’t burn yourself out! It’s great to plan out your vacation and look into all the details, but your trip is also meant to be fun. Overall, find what you enjoy and go with it. Whether it’s posting on Disboards, listening to podcasts or park music, or all of the above – find what satisfies your Disney withdrawals and go with it! Your trip will be here before you know it – don’t rush it!
How do you satisfy your Disney withdrawal? What’s your favorite podcast or blog?