Thank you, Stride Rite for helping Zoe enjoy Beauty and the Beast. #TeamStrideRite
Over the weekend, I took Zoe on a mommy and me date to see Beauty and the Beast. This has been something I’ve wanted to do for a long time but Zoe is very sensitive to loud noise, crowded spaces, and darkness. While she does not have any diagnosed sensory processing disorders, I am highly aware of what makes her uncomfortable and keep it a discussion point for monitoring with her doctor. So prior to us going to see Beauty and the Beast, I took some steps to make sure Zoe would enjoy the movie.
Beauty and the Beast Date Prep
Watch the Original
We watched the original Beauty and the Beast. This is one of my favorite classic Disney movies so I was glad to introduce Zoe to it just in time for the new movie.
Stride Rite for the Win
By now you know this mama loves Stride Rite for her kids. Well, Stride Rite has Disney Belle of the Ball Sneakers out right now. I got these a week in advance but waited until the morning of our date to give them to Zoe. She was so excited to have a new pair of light up sneakers. This was the perfect move (go me) because she was hesitant about going to see the movie. She loved seeing Belle on her sneakers and loved that she would be able to see the “real’ Belle in the movie. Fingers crossed.
Sensory Friendly Viewing
I’ve long researched theaters that offer sensory friendly viewings of movies. There are few around town but none I felt were close enough to try. No point in driving 1 hour or more only to have to turn right back. Luckily a theater pretty close to us now offers this option. The lights are dimmed instead of off, the volume is lowered and they do not show previews. Kids and parents are free to talk, cry or otherwise express themselves during the show. Everyone is welcomed. I marked my calendar for the big day and marked off the next few movies I know she would like too (thinking ahead).
Rest & Good Food
The sensory showing is the first movie of the day at the theater. That is 10 am folks. Zoe is an early riser and I’m serious about our bedtime schedule. The night before I made sure she went to bed on time even though I sometimes let her stay up a little later on a Friday night. The morning of we had a great breakfast together (thanks for sleeping in Baby E). She was well rested and her stomach was full.
Get There Early
We were not as early as I wanted to be but we had enough time to grab some popcorn and water. I knew Zoe would be scared to go through the doors of the theater so I made sure to talk her through it. She still cried and squeezed her eyes shut real tight. I convinced her to sit on my lap in the very first chair at the back of the theater. Thank God for reclining loungers! It took her about 10-15 minutes to relax and actually open her eyes but after that, she enjoyed the movie. WIN!
Yes, I know the sneakers were the perfect gift for our big day at the movies but because Zoe did so well, I was so thrilled I took her to buy the Disney Belle doll. Of course, she got the dress up glass slippers too. You can’t stop a princess when she in action.
The movie was excellent. Zoe was not scared at all. She even asked to see it again. Zoe has also stated that she will be wearing her Belle of the Ball Sneakers and bringing her Belle doll to school next week. Whatever works because we are finally able to go see a movie together.
P.S. Yes I cried happy mama tears.