Thursday, November 14, 2013

Win a $100 #Disney Gift Card from @TheDragynsLair and friends! #DearSantaLoveDragyn #Giveaway (Giveaway Closed)

I am excited to be participating in a great new giveaway with The Dragyn's Lair and friends!  I love this time of year as I start to search out the perfect gift for each of my friends and family.  What better way to kick off the shopping season than with a chance to win a $100 Disney Gift Card!

DragynAlly has been really good this year and she's sharing her wish list with the world in the "Dear Santa...Love Dragyn" holiday gift guide. Featuring over twenty giveaways from brands that are good for guys, dolls, adults and kids the Dragyn's Lair is coming at you with fun and exciting products for all ages! Products from the likes of Safari Ltd, May Designs, and Playmates Toys.

Starting today you can have the chance to win books toys and personalized gifts. There's even a resort stay at the Valley Forge Hotel and Casino. A fan of more "grown-up" fare? Then you can win a gift certificate to go towards a bottle from Plagido's Winery or a cool product from Curvy Bride NJ. From now until December 11th you can enter to win these great products and even a giftcard for $100!

DragynAlly wants to help you find the hottest, coolest, and sexiest gifts for the holidaze season in time to make your shopping list before Black Friday even rolls around. Now you'll know what to ask Santa for this year or have the perfect idea for a gift to make a special someone's wish come true! So come on over to the Dragyn's Lair to see all the fun!

Thank you:The Fronkensteen LoungeMapleMouseMamaDISTherapyPursuing the MagicMagical Mouse SchoolhouseJackie's Magical MomentsReturn to DisneyTricia Ballad AuthorMy Pixie Dust Diary a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, November 7, 2013

In Flight Fun for the Kids ~ Disney Themed Antibacterial Hand Wipes

In Flight Fun for the Kids is a themed series of posts dedicated to packing a child's carry on to make the flight more fun (for the kids AND adults!).  My children each have their own Disney backpack as their carry on and get to pack it themselves.  We have found some fun things over the years to keep them busy on the flight, but also some practical things we can use to keep us from getting to thirsty, hungry or too messy.

Today I am sharing a fun find from our local Dollar Tree store - Disney themed antibacterials wipes.  These are not so exciting for the kids, but for me, having one pack in each of their carry ons makes sure that we can disinfect things before sitting and also wash our hands in case of any sticky snacks.  These little packs are the perfect size to fit in the mesh side pocket on each of their backpacks.  This means, I can grab them without having to zip and unzip someone's backpack.  Even better, because they were each a dollar, I purchased one for each child.  As a family of five, we do not all get to sit together on the plane. So no matter which child is with which adult, they have a pack of these close by.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop ~ Flying Out After An October Snowstorm Hits the Northeast

Focused on the Magic
Today I am joining in the fun of the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop hosted by Deb at Focused on the Magic.  This week's theme is November Calendar Shot.  I decided for this month to choose some photos of the day we made it out of the snowstorm.  If you recall, in 2011, the Northeast had a "White Halloween" due to a rare fall snowstorm.  Well, it just so happened this storm hit on October 29th and overnight to the 30th, the day we were flying out.  As we stood at Joey's flag football game and the snow began to fall, we all made the decision that upon leaving the game, my dad would come pick all of us up, and we would head to Manchester to stay in the hotel next to the airport (we were due to fly out in the morning).  The ride down was NOT fun - it was snowing very hard, so we had little visibility, and the roads were quite slick!  All I kept thinking was we'd be lucky to make it to the airport hotel, never mind Walt Disney World.

Upon checking in, we settled in and crossed our fingers our flight would be able to fly out in the morning.  We all tucked ourselves in and at 2am, we heard a loud crashing sound and the power went out.  A tree branch just outside the hotel broke off and knocked out power.  From then on, I couldn't really sleep, afraid we would miss our flight.  But with a little Disney magic on our side, the power turned back on around 6am.  Though there was a lot of snow outside, we were able to make our way to the airport and even better .... our flight was on time.

So here we are one big happy (relieved) family waiting to board our plane to Walt Disney World!

The kids were watching the crews plow the runway!
The elements I used in this collage are from Capturing Magical Memories digital scrapbook kit Trip Report

Have you almost been stranded due to weather?  And to think, this was an October visit and we never thought weather would be a factor!  Disney magic was at work before we even left New Hampshire - there is no better way to start a vacation.

Head over to
and see what everyone shared as their November calendar shots.  Then, join in with your favorite Disney themed photo!

A Review for American Tourister's Colora Line of Luggage ~ We Will Definitely #PackMoreFun for Disney Now! #SP

I am so excited to have found my new favorite piece of luggage!  It is my lime green American Tourister bag from the Colora line.  This line of luggage will make anyone smile while packing, due to its bright cheerful colors.  As soon as my children saw it, they immediately thought it looked like the Toy Story Aliens, which led to a fun conversation about several characters who "match" our new suitcase.  Anytime we can find a little Disney in our day, it is a good day.  So, we could not be more excited that American Tourister is now the official luggage of Walt Disney World and Disneyland!  These are two companies we love and trust!

The actual bag that I own is the American Tourister Colora 20" Spinner in lime green.  The reason it is called a spinner is because of the dual spinner wheels, which means they rotate 360 degrees and make maneuvering through a busy airport (or my children's obstacle course of toys they set up for us to test out how easily it glides around things) a breeze!  With three little ones in tow, this is a wonderful feature to make our travel experience much easier.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia ~ Toy Story Mania's Broken Plates

Today, I am joining in the fun of the Tiggerific Tuesday Blog Hop hosted by Magical Mouse Schoolhouse, My Dreams of Disney, Heidi's Head and Disney Babies Blog.  To randomly select my trivia fact, I used the Walt Disney World Fun Facts app.  Since my little Joey is home sick with me, I let him choose the category of trivia from the app, which he chose Disney's Hollywood Studios.

1 million virtual plates are broken each day in Toy Story Mania.

Show Me The Plates!  
Hayley absolutely LOVES this attraction!

Now that is a lot of plates!  Toy Story Mania is one of my children's favorite attractions in Disney's Hollywood Studios.  Rarely do we get to experience it more than once per trip, but either way, it is a full out family competition to see who gets the highest score!

Head over to
and see if you learn something new today!  
Don't forget you have all week to link up with your favorite Disney trivia!

Memory Keeping Monday with Capturing Magical Memories and Friends ~ Chef Mickey's

I am so excited that my friend, Mary of Capturing Magical Memories, has created an all new link up.  It is all about scrapbooking.  Since I am SO behind in my scrapbooks, I am hoping to start participating with at least one page per week.  This week I decided to share a quick page of our Chef Mickey pictures from our October 2011 vacation.

To create this page, everything I used was free.  I am just starting out with digiscrapping, so I have plenty of money invested in traditional scrapbooking materials and am not sure I won't to spend a whole lot just yet on this new adventure in scrapbooking ... but I am sure I will!  Currently, all the kits I have purchased are from Capturing Magical Memories because they have all the colors and elements that I would use for my layouts.  You can check out all the products in the Capturing Magical Memories Etsy store (worth every penny!).

Freebies (and only freebies) used to create this page:
For the title and the journaling, I simply used fonts within Photoshop Elements.

As you can probably tell, I am very new to this, so my layouts at this point are very simple.  Hopefully, I can start getting a  little more creative each week, as I work on more pages.  

Make sure you head over to 
and be inspired by those who have already shared and inspire everyone else by sharing one of your scrapbook layouts!  The link up is open until November 10th (a new one will begin on the 11th), so you have plenty of time to participate!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop ~ A Little Pirate Fun in the Gift Shop

Focused on the Magic
Today I am joining in the fun of the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop hosted by Deb at Focused on the Magic.  This week's theme is the Letter P.  Since Deb went with a pirate theme, it immediately made me think of this photo!

One of my favorite things about Disney is that if you have little ones who are afraid of the dark rides, there are always fun things to do in and around the attraction to keep little ones busy while others enjoy the ride.  For us, Pirates of the Caribbean (my favorite attraction) is one that Joey absolutely avoids.  It is dark, and he cannot even get himself to walk through the queue, nevermind get in the boat!  Since Hayley and he are very close, if Joey doesn't go on, Hayley won't either ... this is good and bad!  Here is a little fun they had in the gift shop outside of Pirates of the Caribbean while waiting for the rest of our travel party to exit the ride.

Head on over to
to see what everyone else had to share and to add in your own Disney photo!

Monday, October 21, 2013

American Tourister Enter Stage Right at Disney's Hollywood Studios

Photo Credit: Disney On Wheels 

American Tourister is now front and center and on display in Disney's Hollywood Studios.  In a wonderful meet up of leading characters with a spectacular set, the casting call decisions have been made.

American Tourister is now the official luggage of Walt Disney World and Disneyland!

To celebrate this new collaboration, American Tourister is offering you a chance to win a brand new D23 Mickey or Minnie luggage set.  In order to enter for your chance to win, head over to the American Tourister Facebook page between October 21st and October 25th and comment on one of their daily questions.  There is only one entry per person, so you can comment and join in the fun as much as you'd like, but additional comments will not earn you additional entries.  At the end of the 5 days, 5 winners will be randomly selected.

Head over to this red carpet event and enter for your chance to win:

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop ~ Spreading a Little Pixie Dust

Focused on the Magic
As soon as I learned the topic of the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop for this week, I knew right away which photo I was going to choose.  This is one of my favorite photos of all our trips. Hayley is spreading some pixie dust with her wand from Cinderella's Royal Table.  She was running all over the place in her Cinderella dress, and she was all smiles!  It is one of those moments that I just remember thinking how blessed I am to have three happy, beautiful children who love Disney as much as I do!

To join in the fun and see what everyone else shared today for the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop, "hop" on over to

Friday, October 4, 2013

Favorite Disney Dining Spot Off Disney Property with the Growing Up Disney Minnie Moms

Today, I am joining the Growing Up Disney Minnie Moms to discuss our "Favorite Disney Dining Spot Off Disney Property."  For me, I have actually never eaten off Disney property, so I stretched the topic a bit.  I went with my favorite dining spot outside of the Disney parks and resorts.

Head over to
to see what the Minnie Moms had to share!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Pursuing the Magic ... AND the Travel ~ A New Adventure for Us

I have some exciting news!  As you may already know from the logo in my sidebar that I have become an independent travel consultant for Guru Travel, LLC.  I am quite excited about this new adventure.  Don't worry though, Pursuing the Magic will stay just as it is - a blog about our personal Disney experiences and magical moments.  All my travel planning information can be found on a brand new Facebook page that I have created with Jenn of Disney Babies Blog.  We have spent many years sharing with our readers how we find the Disney magic on vacation and at home, but now we can also help you plan and book your most magical vacation.  To keep up with our Disney news, discounts, deals and much more, make sure you "like" us on Facebook on our all new page:

Even better, if you head over and like our page this week, we have a fun giveaway going on.  We have a prize pack which includes a WDW Guru backpack, 2 WDW Guru lanyards, a 1-year subscription to and an 8x10 frame with "Magical Memories 2013" etched on the glass.  You can find the entry form on the Giveaway tab on our page!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Snapfish to the Rescue of a Disney Photo S.O.S.

I have talked lately about how my hard drive stopped functioning.  As good as I used to be at backing things up, apparently over the last three years ... not so much.  Nothing can be recovered from my hard drive, so I purchased a new one and began uploading all my disks of pictures to my new hard drive.  Unfortunately, I quickly realized that I hadn't made backup disks since 2010.  How is that possible?  My degree is in technology, I know how important it is.  All my documents are backed up, so why did I skip doing the same for our precious home videos and pictures?  I don't know, but the idea of going back three years through photo albums and scanning in our pictures was an overwhelming and daunting task for my already over booked schedule.

Since Snapfish is my number one place to purchase my photos, I knew they were all uploaded into folders there.  I began to explore the possibility of paying Snapfish to create a cd for me.  It used to be an extremely expensive purchase, so I cringed at the thought of it.  But I quickly realized they no longer offer that service.  I used to be able to download my photos for a fee, though it has been so long ago since I had done that, I have no idea how much it cost.  Either way, thousands of photos, no matter the cost, would be an expensive and time consuming task.  So I used the online chat feature on the site.  The person I "spoke" with let me know that they no longer charge to download photos.  I could download them individually or in groups of 50.  Still time consuming, but much faster than individually scanning them all in!  The one thing the person said was that the older the photo, the smaller the file.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop ~ Our Family's Favorites

Focused on the Magic
I am finally able to join the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop hosted by Deb at Focused on the Magic.  I have recovered many of my photos, except my last two trips, though luckily I have access to those on Snapfish ... phew!  These pictures go back to our trip in 2008.  During this trip, it was Joey's second trip and Hayley and Emily's first trip to Walt Disney World.  It was also our first trip as a family of five!  I chose my personal favorite photo of each of my children from that trip.  Between my mom, sister in law and myself, we took over 1,000 photos!  It was a full out family reunion with my parents, brother, sister in law and nephew and us, which included six adults and four children ages three and under.

Here is our full out family reunion!
We celebrated at Hoop Dee Doo Musical Revue ~ Our family's favorite dinner show

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party ~ Themed Costumes for the Whole Family

When we made the decision to splurge (yes, this was a Disney splurge for us!) and purchase tickets to Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party, our next decision was - are we going to dress up?  The kids definitely were going to wear costumes, but my husband and I were not so sure.  Each of the kids had their own ideas of who they wanted to be.  Each of the girls were going to be princesses and Joey wanted to be Captain Rex.  I personally never dressed up for Halloween as an adult.  I am not sure why, but going as a stay at home mom of three seemed to suit me best.  I had no desire to dress up for the Halloween Party.

Monday, September 9, 2013

The Minnie Moms at Growing Up Disney ~ Our Must Do Disney Attractions

As we have all gotten our kids back off to school and off our summer vacation schedule, the Minnie Moms are back at Growing Up Disney sharing our "must do" attractions for our vacations in Disney.

To see what we each had to say, head over to

Let us know which Disney attraction tops your "must do" list!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop ~ Looking Back with a Little Help from Pinterest

Focused on the Magic
Today is the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop hosted by Deb at Focused on the Magic.  I love this blog hop because I could really look at Disney pictures all day long!  Unfortunately for me, my hard drive (with all my photos and videos) has stopped working. Luckily, my neighbor is an IT guy and is taking a look at it for me.  So, I have no new photos to share for today's blog hop.  But I am sharing the link to my Pinterest board, which I started to put all my Wordless Wednesday posts into one place.  It has been a great way to see how our family has grown and changed over the years.  I'll be adding a few more photos to it each week, so feel free to follow us on Pinterest!

To take a look back at some of my family's favorite Disney photos over the years, 
head over to our Pinterest board

Don't forget to head over to
and see what everyone else has shared today too!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Pursuing the Magic on Pinterest

I have been trying to find a way to organize my posts to make it easier to find information from our blog.  Well, I finally found a reason that I just "have to" be on Pinterest.  I have set up boards to organize our topics.  Eventually I will use those boards to update my tabs above.  For now though, head over and follow me on Pinterest!

Some of our boards that might interest you:

I have set up plenty more from our resort reviews to birthday parties and Disney dining to name a few!  Hope they help you find just the information you need to help plan your Disney vacation!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Getting the Most "Character" from Your Character Dining Experiences with Little Ones

This article was orginally published in my Making Magical Memories column in the WDW Daily News newsletter in August of 2013.

Experiencing several character meals every trip is a tradition for our family.  Over the years, we have tried almost each and every one Walt Disney World has to offer.  We have also learned a few ways to make the most of our character interactions at each of the meals.  I would like to take credit for these, but in all honesty, most of these ideas my children came up with unbeknownst to me!

Princess Aurora and Hayley were discussing how
Flora,Fauna and Merryweather gave Hayley's dress
a bow, which they did not add to Aurora's
1. It’s All in the Clothes:  Every trip, I buy the kids new Disney t-shirts.  I organize them by park and/or character meal (and for safety coordinate by color so they are all in one color and easy to spot).  My kids wear shirts of the characters we plan to see.  For example, last trip at Cape May Café, we knew we would see Minnie Mouse.  My mom, my girls and myself all wore our Minnie Mouse shirts, and Minnie made quite the big deal about it when she saw us!  For our Chef Mickey dinner, Joey wore a Mickey shirt and the girls wore another Minnie Mouse shirt (which were also perfect for heading to the Magic Kingdom after we ate).  Having the characters see themselves on the clothes we are wearing is always fun, especially if you are wearing a Buzz Lightyear shirt at a Woody and Buzz character meet and greet or a Mickey Mouse shirt when meeting Donald Duck!  Of course, wearing princess dresses always gives my girls a little extra attention too!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia ~ Disney Autograph Books and How They "Stack Up" to Cinderella's Castle

Tiggerific+Tuesday+Trivia Tiggerific Tuesday #DisneyTrivia: LEGO Sea Serpent I am joining in the fun of the Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia Blog Hop hosted by Magical Mouse Schoolhouse, My Dreams of Disney, Heidi's Head and Disney Babies Blog.  I love learning new Disney trivia!  This particular tidbit is from one of my favorite apps, Walt Disney World Fun Facts.

One thing my children have never really asked to do is purchase an autograph book for meeting characters in the parks.  But from this bit of trivia, I am going to assume maybe we are the only people to visit Walt Disney World who don't!

If you were to stack all of the standard autograph books sold in one year at Disney World, it would be the equivalent to stacking 200 Cinderella Castles on top of each other.

I don't know about you, but that seems like a lot!!  Maybe we are missing out on something.  But Thursday, I will be sharing with you the fun ways we make the most of our character interactions without autograph books!

To read more Disney trivia, head over to 
and learn something new today!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Lilo and Stitch Best Friends Breakfast at 'Ohana in Disney's Polynesian Resort

This article was originally published in the WDW Daily News newsletter as part of my Making Magical Memories column in July 2013.

Dinner at ‘Ohana in Disney’s Polynesian Resort is one of our favorite dining spots and makes our “must do” list every trip.  This year not only did we enjoy dinner here, but we also experienced the Lilo and Stitch Best Friends Breakfast.

When we checked in for our reservation, we were all given leis, which my girls loved!  Then we had a family picture taken, which were brought to our table during our meal and we had the option to purchase.  Our photo was so great, we HAD to purchase ours.  Anytime we can get one photo with three kids and four adults all looking at the camera, eyes open and smiling, it becomes a must purchase.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Pete's Silly Sideshow

This article was originally published in the WDW Daily News newsletter for my column Making Magical Memories in April 2013.

Over the years, my children have come to love all Disney characters and look forward to meeting their favorites when in Walt Disney World.  Though on certain trips, one or two of them may be a little more timid about meeting characters in the parks, I can say after our last trip, all fears are gone.  My children could not get enough of the characters!  During our 2011 trip, we took the time to experience the character trails at Camp Minnie-Mickey in Disney’s Animal Kingdom, which was great seeing the Fab 5 in their safari outfits.  This time around, we visited Pete’s Silly Sideshow in the Magic Kingdom for the first time … and loved it!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

CNN iReport ~ All Ears: Your Disney Memories

Back in April, I submitted a photo for the CNN iReport on Disney memories.  I was excited to get an e-mail from one of the correspondents asking for more information about the photo, my family and how our love of Disney began.  I had completely forgotten about this until I just decided to sort through the 900+ e-mails I had stacking up in my inbox.

If you want to learn a little more about us, here is our iReport 

Did you submit a photo?  Leave the link in a comment below, I would love to see it!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Rainy Days in Disney

For us, the rain cannot stop us from entering the parks.  Of course, we attempt to spend some time on more of the indoor attractions to keep as dry as possible!  Though there are plenty of places in Epcot to spend some indoor time exploring, my kids favorite place is in the Imagination! Pavilion at the ImageWorks - What If Labs.  Not only do the kids get to explore, but they also get to jump around.  With three children who love all kinds of music, this is the perfect spot to spend some time in Disney out of the rain!

The What If Labs are the area of the Imagination! Pavilion you enter, upon exiting the Journey into Imagination with Figment attraction.  In this area, there are two things my children particularly love.  First is the Melody Maker.  Guests can use their arms to create music, which is actually the melody of One Little Spark.  Joey goes all out as if he is conducting and orchestra!  Now that my children are all tall enough to reach to play around here, it is one of their favorite things to do in Epcot.  On previous trips, I have had to hold Emily up to be able to test this out.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The 1997 Toy Story Parade ~ Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop

Focused on the Magic
Today I am joining in the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop hosted by Focused on the Magic with what some may call "vintage" Disney.

Before having children, my husband and I took a trip to Walt Disney World during the month of May in 1997 for our friends' wedding.  One of my favorite things from this trip was the Toy Story Parade at Disney MGM Studios (now Disney's Hollywood Studios).    I really miss these movie themed parades.  The Toy Story one was really fun.  My kids are huge fans of these characters, so I hope one day, Disney will bring this one back (though I am sure they will not!).

If you haven't seen this parade, there is a great video on You Tube, well there are several, but I found one uploaded by Disneyworld144 from 1997.

Make sure you head over to 
to see everyone's May Calendar Shots.  This is a great way to bring a little Disney into your day as you stroll through this virtual photo album!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia ~ The Star Tours Possibilities

Tiggerific+Tuesday+Trivia Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia: Star Wars Weekends Time for another week of Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia, a fun blog hop hosted by Disney Babies Blog, Heidi's Head, Magical Mouse Schoolhouse and My Dreams of Disney.  I normally choose just a random trivia fact, but with Star Wars Weekends beginning this month in Disney's Hollywood Studios, I used the Walt Disney World Fun Facts App and scrolled though the facts until I found a Star Tours one.  For all you super fans of Star Tours, here's a fun fact:

You would have to ride Star Tours 2 for six hours straight to have all 54 possible experiences.  

I love Star Tours, especially since the upgrade.  C-3PO is a fun addition as the "pilot."  We have ridden several times and have been to Hoth, Tatooine, Coruscant, and flown through an asteroid field before seeing the unfinished Death Star.  There are a few scenes we have not experienced yet, but hopefully one day, we will manage to see them all ... well, hopefully, without having to ride for 6 hours straight.

Which scene is your favorite? 

Make sure you head over to
for more Disney trivia.  

Thursday, April 18, 2013

15 Pictures for 15 Years of Disney's Animal Kingdom ~ Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop

Focused on the Magic
As we close in on the 15th anniversary of Disney's Animal Kingdom, I was excited to see this week's theme for the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop hosted by Focused on the Magic ~ Flora, Fauna, Fantasy 15.  I decided to create a collage of 15 photos that we have taken from the parks over our last few trips.  Animal Kingdom is a park we spend more and more time in each trip, as we discover more and more of what it has to offer!

Make sure you head over to
and take a stroll through this virtual Disney photo album

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Be Inspired ...

Here is the photo I captured of Main Street the morning of the
Princess Half Marathon, February 2013
My big goal for this year was to run in the Princess Half marathon.  Unfortunately due to a knee injury, I was unable to participate.  It was a very difficult decision for me, but in the long run, it was the right one.  But on the morning of the marathon, I went into the Magic Kingdom to see all the runners make there way down Main Street.  Though I wasn't running, the excitement was in the air.  I felt teary-eyed seeing all these amazing princesses (and a few princes sprinkled in there too) accomplish such a great feat.  In that moment, as much motivation I had to one day be a part of a runDisney event, my inspiration was beyond words.  As soon as I came home from our vacation, I got to work on a running plan that would build and strengthen my knee to participate in this amazing event.  (This first paragraph was written about a week before the following paragraphs.  Though this post started out as being inspired to complete a marathon, with recent events, it has become less about running and Disney, than it is about living my life and being the person I strive to be.)

My Imaginary Limited Time Magic Week

I love the idea of the Limited Time Magic weeks for this year's Disney promotion.  I think it is a great way to bring something unique to each visitors vacation, as well as bring to the parks some extra fun.  As I tried to come up with a good idea for my post, I thought of what I love at Disney that isn't always around when I visit.  That is Epcot's Food and Wine Festival. Then, I tried to find a way to fit it into my favorite Disney park, which is the Magic Kingdom.  So here is my Limited Time Magic week:

Fantasy Food Fair

Ok, so the name could use a little more creativity, but how about a food festival around the Magic Kingdom based on favorite attractions and characters?  Here is what I imagine you would find for booths throughout the park (I could have written a book here, but decided to stick with just two or three booths per park section!):

In Adventureland:

  • Swiss Family Robinson Tree House: Fruit and Vegetable dishes with a polynesian/tropical twist (even in the kitchen as you walk through the tree house, there table is covered in fruits and vegetables)
  • The Magic Carpets of Aladdin: Moroccan themed dishes from lamb to couscous and more
  • Pirates of the Caribbean:  Caribbean Themed Foods, such as the jerk chicken they serve at Epcot's Food and Wine Festival (one of my favorites!)
Liberty Square:
  • Hall of Presidents: A selection of foods from colonial America to today, from apple pie to johnny cakes to cranberry themed dishes
  • Liberty Belle Riverboat: Princess and the Frog/Mardi Gras themed foods from red beans and rice to beignets
  • Haunted Mansion: To celebrate along with the ghosts in the ballroom, this booth would have party themed cupcakes and sweet, ghostly treats to choose from
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh: Honey themed foods would be at the forefront here.  Honey Lime Chicken sandwiches (we make these at home a lot) to tea flavored with honey to honey themed sweet treats
  • Mad Tea Party: Tea party finger foods would be the offerings here, along with many flavors of tea sample
  • Pete's Silly Sideshow: Circus foods would be the highlight here from corn dogs to caramel popcorn to roasted peanuts
  • Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin:  Here Pizza Planet would be the theme!  Maybe even  an offering of Mrs. Nesbitt's tea!
  • Stitich's Great Escape: Foods from this booth would, of course, have a Polynesian flair, and even include Stitch juice, which is served at the Best Friends Character Breakfast at 'Ohana.

This would be a fun promotion for one of the Limited Time Magic weeks, well, at least I think it would be!  I know I would enjoying the samples while we toured the parks.  

What food booth would you create for a Fantasy Food Fair?

Sunday, April 14, 2013

We Pursued & Found the Magic This Week with Disney Inspirations, Joey the Jedi and more

In case you missed any of our posts from this week, here is a quick recap:

As you know, we are always trying to find ways to bring a little Disney into our day.  This week, to surprise Joey and Hayley and our neighbors' two children, Emily and I made some beignets for an after school snack.  Emily loves Princess Tiana, and anytime she can take out her Princess and the Frog Cookbook and create something, she is happy!

How did you bring a little Disney into your week this week?

Friday, April 12, 2013

Cow Pasture to Safari at Disney's Animal Kingdom? Time for the Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia Blog Hop

Tiggerific+Tuesday+Trivia Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia: Expedition Everest It's time for more Tiggerific Tuesday Trivia, a blog hop hosted by My Dreams of Disney, Magical Mouse Schoolhouse, Heidi's Head and Disney Babies Blog.  As we are closing in on the 15th anniversary of Disney's Animal Kingdom, I decided to go with a little trivia from this park.  As always, I used the Walt Disney World Fun Facts app to randomly choose my Disney fact.

The area used for Kilimanjaro Safaris was previously a flat cow pasture.  Disney brought in every hill, mountain and elevation change.

I would never have guessed this, though how can I be surprised that Disney would go to such lengths to create an authentic safari for its guests?  I love Kilimanjaro Safaris!  But knowing this little tidbit of trivia certainly gives me a better appreciation of Disney's attention to detail.

To read more Disney trivia, head over to
to see what everyone else shared and link in with your own tidbit of Disney information!

Looking to take a look back at the changes Disney's Animal Kingdom has seen over the last 15 years?  Make sure you head over to DIStherapy for the 15 Days to 15 Years series, which is a countdown to the park's 15th anniversary.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Commemorating a Little Ones "Firsts" ~ Celebrating Emily's 1st Ride on Space Mountain

During our most recent trip to Walt Disney World, we experienced many new things, from attractions to new-to-us character dining spots to shows.  Most of our new experiences came from finally having all three children tall enough to experience just about every attraction in all four theme parks, as well as gaining a love of new characters over the past year that they were not so familiar with during our previous trips.  Our youngest daughter, Emily, is by far our bravest when it comes to experiencing new things; whereas Hayley is a bit more timid but is usually willing to try something new at least once, and our oldest Joey is down right scared of just about anything new.  

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Joey the Jedi for the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop ~ It's All About the Letter J

Focused on the Magic
Today I am joining in the fun of the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop hosted by Deb at Focused on the Magic.  The theme this week is the letter J and just so happens my son's name is "J"oey.  So this week my hardest part of choosing photos was not choosing too many!  I probably could create a complete photo book of just Joey and his Disney trips.  But I digress!  As I searched through my photos, I realized that how perfect for "J" to share photos of my Jedi Joey.

Joey took on Darth Vader like a pro!  He will be sharing his review of the Jedi Training Academy in a future post, but I can say, this is one of his favorite things in Walt Disney World!

Make sure you head over to 
to take a stroll through this virtual photo album of everyone's favorite Disney J's!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Disney Hats ~ Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop

Focused on the Magic
It's time for another week of the Disney Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop hosted by Focused on the Magic.  I have talked about Disney hats here a few times because we use the "dress up" time (that's what the girls call trying on all the hats and Mickey Ears) as a way to get Hayley into a shop to cool off (she easily overheats when it is warm out) and a way to entertain the kids while waiting for the thrill seekers in our travel party to come off the rides the kids aren't tall enough for or too scared to experience.

Here are a few of my favorite "Disney Hat" photos from this past trip:

To see more fun Disney hats, head over to 
to take a stroll through this vrirutal photo album of Disney fun!