In South Louisiana, Mardi Gras is a time for either parades and beads or traveling. One of the popular choices for vacations is Disney World. The paths of Disney are crowded with southern accents, friendly faces, and personalized shirts. How do I know this? I have had the privilege to spend the past two Mardi Gras Breaks in Disney World. While all the characters and rides and food are an important part of Disney World, the atmosphere is what keeps me returning. There is no where else that I can feel the weight of my responsibilities lifted to return to the days of my childhood. So whether I am traveling with my husband or my best friend, getting dressed up and leaving my worries behind is my favorite part.
Mouse ears and tiaras. Roller coasters and princesses. So maybe we can’t fit into princess dress up any longer, so what’s the next best thing? Personalized shirts! With each park and each day, we styled our own personal statement of who we are through our shirts. Okay, so maybe its not that dramatic, but we certainly did enjoy our daily shirt on my most recent trip.
So why? Why was it important to us and many others in Disney World? Why create or purchase personalized shirts for our trip? Truthfully, it seems silly to think about. However, I felt so confident walking around Disney in these shirts. Wearing something hand created to fit my personality made me feel unique and individual. Even seeing others wearing the same shirt or something similar showed me how much I have in common with the people surrounding me. Everyone has a specific twist or style on the same ideas (it was so interesting to see all the Minnie Mouse baseball T’s.) Each day our shirts were able to fit our theme park, our style, and our personalities. So maybe some may think its silly, but to me it made sense.
So my friend asked me during the trip, “Is it a requirement to come to Disney with themed T-Shirts?” Maybe it wasn’t required, and maybe it didn’t truly affect the amount of fun we had on our trip. But in my opinion, part of being more beautiful and living a more beautiful life is keeping things that make you happy. Marie Kondo’s “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” asks us if our things make us happy or in her words, “spark joy.” Wearing these shirts are “sparks of joy” in our vacation. There was joy in wearing something unique. Something we spent time thinking about and designing, even creating. There was joy in picking out our outfits and determining the days to wear them. Most of all there was joy in wearing them.
Disney World is a magical place; its own special world. But as always, we return to the rest of the world. As an adult we realize our responsibilities, and we face them head on. I am thankful to return home, but I take more joy back with me to add to my joyful peachy life. I continue to wear my shirts or look at the pictures and remember the spark of joy I experienced in my trip. I remember the importance to laugh like I’m on a roller coaster or smile as if everyone is a character, walk tall like I am a princess or talk with a stranger standing in line. Those moments are always in my memory, but I am also reminded of them when I wear these shirts.
Plus, whats more southern than a big script monogram!
So where are you traveling to? What are you wearing there? Will it spark joy in your vacation? Can you carry that joy back with you? Will it say something about your individuality? I hope you consider having it handmade! Happy Travels!! May you days always be just peachy.