Saturday, November 19, 2011

Happy Birthday, Minnie Mouse!

Yesterday, there was a lot of celebration for the birthday of Mickey Mouse.  Did you also know that it was Minnie Mouse's birthday too?  All this week, Emily has been very excited that Disney Junior has been celebrating Minnie all week.  She loves Minnie Mouse, as do I.  Emily's birthday is in just a couple of weeks and she has already let me know that she wants a Minnie Mouse birthday party.  I will share our Minnie Mouse birthday party when it gets closer, but thought for today I would share the over-sized Minnie Mouse treat I found at Goofy's Candy Company on our most recent trip to Walt Disney World.  And, yes, that price tag does say $49.95.

Of course, if you have been reading my blog for a while, you might have stumbled across my post about why Minnie Mouse is so important to this family.  Our most magical moment included her, and it is by far my favorite Disney memory of the last 25 years of Disney trips. If you missed that post, you can find it at 40 Days to 40 Years ~ 2008 over at DISTherapy.  For me, that moment is the true meaning of Disney Magic.

Happy Birthday, Minnie Mouse!

If you want to see the Mickey version of this treat, you can head over to Pursuing the Magic's Facebook page.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Happy Birthday, Mickey Mouse! Mickey's Birthday Blog Hop ~ Favor Bags

Welcome to our Mickey Mouse Birthday Party Blog Hop! This year Mickey Mouse will be turning 83, and we thought it would be fun to all celebrate with our little ones. I’ll be sharing about favors and favor bags for the party. You can find links to the other party ideas at the end of this post.

I love going all out for my children's birthdays, from the invitations to the food to the decorations to the thank you cards.  Everything is themed from top to bottom.  As my children have gotten older, there is one part of the prepartions I really encourage them to take part in.  That is the favors.  I think it is so important to teach my children about giving something back to those who have come to help them celebrate.  So, for each party, they help create their own favor bags, help choose the items to put in the favor bags and help assemble them.

Being someone who has an excessive (complete rookie scrapbooker mistake, but I digress!) amount of scrapbooking materials, it is very easy to pull out my drawer of embellishments and letters, as well as my Cricut machine and Disney cartidges, and give my children full freedom to create.  The two bags I have here were created mostly by Hayley, though Emily gave some input here and there.  

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop ~ It's All About Mickey!

Focused on the Magic

Today I am joining in the fun of the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop hosted by Debs at Focused on the Magic.  The theme this week is Mickey Mouse, who we met at Epcot's Character Spot, which I will share our experience with next week.

Here are my three cuties with their "camera faces."  If you have little ones
you probably know what I am referring to!

Join in the fun over at Focused on the Magic's Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop with your best Disney photo and check out all the other great Wordless Wednesday links!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Bringing a Tambu Lounge Favorite into My Kitchen

My favorite lounge in Walt Disney World is by far the Tambu Lounge at Disney's Polynesian Resort.  On this past trip, I had the opportunity to enjoy my favorite beverage at my favorite lounge - the Tropical Macaw.  What I love about this drink is that it is not too strong and yet not too sweet.  Upon returning home, I searched online for the recipe and came across it at Party through the Parks, along with plenty of bar and lounge menus, as well as recipes.  So last night, I recreated the Tropical Macaw, and it was a nice little piece of Disney to bring home with me, since I am having full on Disney withdrawals right now!

If you want the recipe, head over to 

What is your favorite Disney recipe to create at home?

Monday, November 14, 2011

Little Chef Disney Creations ~ Sorcerer Mickey Magical Treats over at Cooking with Mickey

You can find the kids and I over at Cooking with Mickey today for the next episode of Little Chef Disney Creations.  This series of posts is a way for us to share our Disney-inspired recipes that the whole family can create together.

Head over to Cooking with Mickey for this month's recipe:

Friday, November 11, 2011

A Salute to Our Veterans from Walt Disney World Transportation Cast Members

Disney magic seemed to pop up everywhere on our recent trip to Walt Disney World.  One very special moment, that is fitting for today's celebration of our nation's veterans, happened on the last day of our vacation.  My dad was with my three children waiting near the bus depot at Disney's Polynesian Resort, while Pierre and I were finishing getting ready for the day.  A Disney Cast Member noticed my dad's Marine Corps jacket, walked up to him and struck up a conversation.  My dad told him about his experiences as a Marine.  He thanked  my dad and handed him the card I have photos of below.  This moment was very special for my dad.  When he was a Marine, it was a time during this country's history that soldiers were not treated the way they are today.  I am so thankful that times have changed for our country.  I am also so thankful to this Cast Member because he really made my dad's day.

This is the front of the card

Disney Magic to the Rescue Again ~ Hayley's Moment with Snow White

I am sure we can all agree that Disney magic just seems to appear at the most unexpected and sometimes the most needed times.  We had a few such moments last week, but there is one that brought a smile to Hayley's face that even now a week later I can still see her beautiful smile and hear her infectious giggle from that exact moment.

Hayley explaining the importance of the flower and her
little sister's princess emergency

Hayley was feeling a bit under the weather
and was very serious meeting Snow White
We made our way to the Magic Kingdom for our very first trip to Cinderella's Royal Table.  We were unsure how this was going to go because Hayley was not feeling well at all.  She was in her Cinderella gown and Emily was dressed as Princess Tiana.  As we made our way through the Magic Kingdom turnstiles, the flower fell off Emily's gown.  Emily became very upset because her new Tiana gown was now "ruined."  My mom took Hayley to Guest Services to see if they had a safety pin we could have to reattach the flower, while I calmed Emily down.  The rest of us waited outside.  I won't go into the details, but as we waited, a person, to put it nicely, "lost their breakfast" right in front of us.  Joey started dry heaving and let's just say, it was unpleasant.  So my dad and Pierre took Joey and Emily over toward the Emporium to wait for us there.

As I started to make my way into Guest Services, my mom walked out without Hayley and starts pointing to the left of Guest Services.  As I look over, out walks Snow White holding Hayley's hand.  No one else was there, just the two of them.  Hayley was explaining to Snow White about how the flower was from Emily's dress and we needed to fix it.  Hayley was VERY serious about this because she knew how upset Emily was.  I pulled out my camera and just started clicking away.  I mentioned to Hayley how serious she looked and Snow White got right down on the ground with Hayley and started tickling her.  Hayley was beaming!  It was the first smile we had seen from her all day. It was just the Disney magic Hayley needed because she was suddenly energized and back to her regular self.

Hayley's giggle and huge smile while
Snow White was tickling her was
something I will never forget
Apparently, Snow White had spotted Hayley in Guest Services and just walked right up to her, held her hand and walked outside.  It is moments like these that I love.  They aren't planned, they just happen and create memories that will last a lifetime for Hayley and for those of us there to witness it.  These are the moments that keep me wanting to go back and share Disney with my children.  To Snow White, Hayley was one of hundreds of girls who happened to be in Magic Kingdom that day, but to Hayley, Snow White is the beautiful princess who has seven dwarfs as friends, married The Prince, and is now her "best friend."

Some of our best Disney moments have happened when we least expect them.  What is your greatest Disney moment that was completely unexpected?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

New TSA Regulations for Children Under Age 12

Hayley watching for our plane
at Manchester Airport
My children have traveled many times by plane to many destinations.  Even with all these trips under my belt, I can say that the most stressful part about traveling with little ones is airport security.  This year, after making it to the airport and relieved our airplane would depart on time even with the record breaking snow, I was very excited, but still had that knot in my stomach about getting the three kids through security and to the gate.  In 2010, Joey refused to walk through the security "door," as he calls it, because he was afraid it would zap him.  Of course, upon hearing that, Hayley and Emily began worrying and did not want to get zapped.  Let's just say, three crying kids, annoyed TSA agents and business people in a hurry to get to their flights made a nightmare of a morning.  In the end, we made it through to the gate and much to Joey's relief, no one was zapped.  I am not sure which was worse that incident or the year my children thought TSA was stealing their new Disney sneakers.  Either way, as prepared as I have always been, airport security gets me every time.

But this year was completely different.  As soon as we got into the security line, I had the kids start taking off their shoes.  The TSA agent informed me that there is a new regulation in place.  Children ages 12 and under are no longer required to remove their sneakers to go through security.  Now if your children can put their own sneakers back on without assistance this news probably isn't as exciting for you as it is for some of us who have really little ones.  Having experienced airport security in previous years with three children who could not put their own shoes on, or take them off for that matter,  this is a big time saver and stress relief for parents of little ones.

So, next time you are traveling anywhere and need to go through airport security with little ones, here is one less step you need to take to get yourself to the gate.  Keep their shoes on!  Adults of course still need to remove their shoes, but for us, this change in regulations made for a very smooth morning through security to the gate.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

We Pursued & We Found Lots of Disney Magic This Past Week in Walt Disney World

It is hard to believe that after a year of planning, our one week Walt Disney World vacation has already come and gone. We had a few bumps in the road, but overall, it was an amazing trip.  We tried several things for the very first time, we continued some favorite family traditions and created a lot of magical memories.  I will be sharing all my reviews and stories with you, but decided for today to start with the day before our trip.  That may sound odd, but you will see by the end why I decided to start our trip report there.

Travelling to Walt Disney World in October is one of our favorite times of year.  I love the fall decorations as you walk down Main Street, U.S.A. and being from New Hampshire, it is one time of the year that we do not have to worry about being snowed in.  Well, at least, most years.  This year was completely different.  Friday, two days before our flight to Orlando, we started taking the weather reports seriously.  They had been predicting snow all week, but honestly, no one in this house actually thought it would happen.  As the week progressed, the snow totals became higher and higher. Friday afternoon, my dad made the suggestion that we at least get hotel rooms near the airport Saturday night, so that we wouldn't have to drive in the snow Sunday morning.  Pierre and I agreed this would be a great idea and booked our room. The snow was originally predicted to begin at 7pm Saturday.  This was perfect for us because our Saturday schedule was full.  Hayley had a birthday party to attend, and Joey had his last flag football game of the season.  We decided that when Joey's game ended at 4, we would all go home, pack up my parents' van and make our way to the hotel in Manchester, which is over an hour away.

By the time we reached Concord (45 minutes away) the roads were terrible.  So much for a 7pm start time.  It wasn't even five and the roads were sheer ice.  The driving was terrible.  Luckily, my dad is a retired State Trooper, so he is a great driver in any condition.  He has had a lot of practice.  After a very long ride, we safely arrived at our hotel.  At this point, between the first snow of the season and the fact that we were going to Walt Disney World, the kids were pretty much wild, though in a good way.  As the four adults were worrying about our flight being canceled, the three kids were chattering away about making a snowman and what they wanted to do first in Disney.

We all settled in and had the kids in bed by 8:30.  At 9:30, the power went out.  Both Pierre and I began to worry a little more than we already had about flights being cancelled.  Apparently this hotel had no generator, because no power also meant no heat.  I was in and out of sleep all night.  At 4:41, the power came back on. I grabbed my phone, checked our flight status, which still read "On Time."  I was relieved but still knew that may not be accurate in a few hours for our 10:45 flight.  At 5:12, we heard a large cracking sound and a branch from a tree just outside the hotel came down and the power went out again.  Any relief I felt prior to that was gone.  I am sure you can probably guess, I did not go back to sleep.  Luckily, in less than an hour, the power was back on and our flight was still listed as "On Time."  Apparently, the falling branch and the power going out at the same time was just a coincidence! Thank goodness!

We were all up early and ready to go.  Since the flight prior to ours was cancelled, we decided to get to the airport as soon as we could.  The hotel was just about a mile drive from the airport parking garage and made it there without an issue.

Tomorrow I will share with you the new airport security rules that were implemented within the last two weeks in regards to children under 12.  Moms who travel with little ones will rejoice, as I did, when I saw how much easier getting through security was this trip compared to the one I wrote about in my previous article T.S.A. or S.T.R.E.S.S. 

Well, I am happy to be back, and the wheels are already turning for when our next Walt Disney World vacation will be!! I can't wait to share with you all our Disney experiences from this week.  By the way, according to the reports I read, this storm broke snow records that were established 140 years ago.  We were very lucky we decided to head south to the airport.  Some towns north of us ended up with over 30 inches of snow and some places even were without power for days!  I am going to just say that it was Disney magic at work that got us to the airport safely and on a flight that left on time.  That is always a great way to start a vacation.