Counting Down to Disney

Mother 300x227 Counting Down to DisneyMother Knows Best is a regular column on Your Highway in the Sky dedicated to celebrating Disney with Kids. Traveling to Disney with kids can be lots of fun. Whether you’re taking a baby or a teen, or any age(s) in between, we’d like to share with you ideas to help you make the most of your family trip. It’s even possible to enjoy a Disney vacation with children of multiple ages!


Yesterday, we were exactly 120 days from our next trip to Walt Disney World. Ask me how I know this. (I’ll actually show you later on in this post.)

This got me to thinking about counting down the days to a Disney vacation.  How do you do it?  We have done the typical countdown chain many times.  For our last trip, earlier this year, I actually got a really nice countdown chain from a member of the DISboards. Rather than just being a basic paper chain that we cut out and put our own numbers on, this one had images of characters on it with the numbers, and was just a lot more fun!

For our next trip, being less than a year since the last trip, I wanted something different to use for our countdown; so I went searching the internet for ideas.  It seems like, no matter what you are looking for these days, someone has come up with a clever idea of how you can do-it-yourself.  I love that!  I love making things; but coming up with the ideas is where I am often lacking (or I just don’t take the time).

In my search, I came up with some great countdown ideas that I’d like to share with you.  In turn, I hope that you will share your countdown ideas with me! 

  • Our friend Beth from A Disney Mom’s Thoughts shared a post on how she created her countdown to Disney calendar (complete with pictures).
  • Have you seen the tutorials for creating “altered clipboards” (I love those and think they would make such great gifts!)  Someone on the DISboards shared a “countdown clipboard” which I think is a great idea – and oh, so cute! Personally, I’d like one of these just for fun (without the countdown on it)!
  • Another fun idea I found on the DISboards is a take on the countdown chain, but geared more toward older kids. The idea is to create a chain with a Disney trivia tidbit on each link.
  • My favorite countdown idea is the Mickey Chalkboard, shared on Happy Clipping. While I absolutely love the way this countdown chalkboard looks, I wasn’t too crazy about the idea of using foamboard to create it.  I wanted to make one with wood (and a nice frame hanger on the back so we could display it on the wall). However, I couldn’t find anyone to cut out the Mickey head shape (honestly, I didn’t search too hard); and I was too cheap to buy the chalkboard paint (Wal-mart wanted $10 for a pint of it!)  And, I must confess, I lack patience!
crafts 020 300x225 Counting Down to Disney

Our Disney Vacation Countdown

When I get something in my head, I want it done yesterday!  That’s just the way I roll.  So, I started thinking . . . what could I use to create a perpetual countdown using items I had laying around the house?  This is what I came up with:

  • I had the small white board (I had purchased it to use in our homeschooling, but we hadn’t been using it lately, so it was just laying in the basement, looking very sad and only).
  • I used PERMANENT markers (Sharpies are my friends!) to draw the Mickey head silhouette and write the message on the white board.
  • I used a wooden plate rack to display it in a prominent place in our kitchen.
  • And, each day, Gracie uses dry-erase markers to change out our number.  She has loved being creative with the numbers (as you can see)!

I realize we’re a little fanatical – counting out our trip for months in advance!  Please tell me we’re not alone in this! 

So, there you have it – this is how we’re counting down to Disney.  With the exception of the purchase of some new dry-erase markers, this project cost us nothing, and should last for a long time to come.  I’d love to hear how YOU countdown the days.  Please share!   

 Counting Down to Disney

Meet Heidi Strawser


Heidi is a stay-at-home, work-at-home, homeschooling mom to 3 kids.She lives in central PA with her family, but visits central FL as often as possible. She's visited Walt Disney World as a teen, as a young adult, and as a mother. She dreams of working at Disney World and being happy all the time!

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