I think most parents have entertained the fantasy of surprising their kids with a trip to Disneyland and catching the magic and joy on their faces as the surprise is revealed. There’s no shortage of glee-filled Disney reveals on Youtube . . . and I’ve loved watching the creative ways parents have told their kids of a Disney trip, and seeing little faces light up. But while happy footage abounds, I also stumbled upon a few clips of the darker side of the Disneyland surprise: the epic fail of disappointed kids. Sometimes, as things involving small children are apt to do, best-laid plans go awry, and the reaction is a little less joy and a bit more tears than one might expect.
My kids and I will be traveling to the Disney World Resort in Orlando in just two weeks for the 2013 Disney Social Media Moms Conference. We’ve not yet told the kids, and I’m hoping to pull off a fun surprise with them. I have to confess: last year we had our own Disney Surprise Fail. I revealed the trip to the kids by giving each of them a box with a Mickey or Minnie shirt inside. The girls open the boxes and shrieked . . . they knew what it meant and were so excited. But with my camera poised to capture the reaction, I watched my boys have a completely underwhelming response because THEY DIDN’T LIKE THE T-SHIRTS. God forbid these two have to wear a t-shirt with a cartoon character instead of a skateboard. They sulked about the shirts for a bit, but finally joined their sisters in the hooping and hollering (after I’d promised they could wear something else). Kids, man. They ruin everything.
Below are some of the most epic surprise fails I found on YouTube. I’m watching them for three reasons: 1) They are hilarious, 2) They are a cautionary tale of how not to stage a surprise, and 3) They provide the schaudenfraude of knowing that my kids are not the only children who have completely unreasonable and ungrateful moments. It’s possible that I laughed a little too hard at these:
So . . . in review: best not to surprise the child en-route, or to hatch a plan that you suddenly change. But help me out, here. I need some ideas. How should I surprise my own four kids?