I thought it would be fun to start a short series about this east coaster venturing into uncharted territory, otherwise know as...Disneyland. There is always something new and fun to try at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, FL but, for the most part, I know that place like the back of my hand and can plan a top-notch vacation without breaking a sweat. That is most certainly not the case in Disneyland. I have only been to Disneyland once in my life and it was for one day when I was about 8 or 9. I remember that I went, but I don't remember anything else about it. My husband and daughter are total Disneyland newbies as well so I now find myself being in the position, like many other first-timers, where I feel a bit overwhelmed. This series will chronicle my triumphs and disappointments in planning and completing what I will consider my first trip to Disneyland. Please follow along and feel free to offer any planning advice that you may have to help make this trip a success! In case you missed Episode One, you can check that out here :)
Well, here I am one month later to tell you what I've accomplished since the last post and then beg for more tips!! Tomorrow is my 60 day mark and I do want to schedule at least a few special meals for our trip so lets start there.
Based on all of the great feedback that I've been receiving, I will be requesting character dining reservations for Ariel's Grotto in California Adventure and Storytellers in the Grand Californian Hotel. Other restaurants that we would like to experience while in Disneyland is the Blue Bayou and Trader Sam's so I suppose I will make reservations for these two as well, just in case. I also want to try the famous Monte Cristo sandwich at Cafe Orleans and hit up the Corn Dog Castle and Naples Pizzeria. Additionally, I want to book us for the World of Color dining package and the Fantasmic preferred seating with dessert package. We have a Studio Villa reserved at the Grand Californian Hotel so I may try to find some cereal/bagels, snacks and drinks to help with our expenses. Based on this Disneyland Area map that I found online, it appears that the Northgate Market appears to be the closest. If there are better options, please comment and let me know!
The teacher is in with another fun activity for the family-and
yes it’s free!
It’s a #MonstrousSummer thanks to the folks @Lowes. Help kick
off your Monster’s Weekend by attending a
Build and Grow Clinic, this week featuring Disney Pixar’s “Monster’s
University”. Bring your child to any
@Lowes location this weekend to build your very own Monsters inspired chest and they
too will be off to college, or at least have a place to store those precious treasures
until they are ready to go. What is Build and Grow? Each Saturday and Sunday, Lowe’s invites
children 5 years and older to their free Build and Grow Clinics. A wide variety
of classes awaits these young builders ranging from wooden toys, to birdhouses,
to this weekend’s Monster’s University Chest. When a child shows up at the
clinic, they receive a free apron, goggles and the project kit. Over the course
of an hour, the Lowe’s staff will guide
you and your child through the process and in the end, all will walk away with
something they created themselves as well as that sense of accomplishment. Ready to register your child or looking for more information? Head over
to Lowe's Build and Grow website and let your #Monstrous Summer begin!
DISNEY AND ORLANDO DIGEST courtesy of Destinations in Florida
To Book Any of the Following Deals, click here or on the banner below!
FREE Dining – EVERYONE can get the free Disney Dining Plan for travel dates of 9/2/13 – 9/25/13. You must purchase a package that includes a minimum of 3 nights’ accommodation at a Disney Resort and a minimum 2-day Base Ticket. If you stay at a Disney Value Resort, the Quick Service Dining Plan is free. If you stay at a Disney Moderate or Deluxe Resort, the Basic Dining is free. You can also upgrade from the Quick Service to the Basic Dining for an additional $19 per adult per night and $3 per night per child. You can also upgrade from the Basic Dining to the Deluxe Dining for an additional $45 per adult per night and $20 per night per child. Book by 7/31/13. Disney will require a deposit of $200 and final payment is due 45 days prior to arrival.
Save Up To 30% on Rooms at Select Walt Disney World Resort Hotels - Book your room only or package reservation and save up to 30% off the Disney Resort hotels for 8/15/13 – 9/28/13. You can book a room only or upgrade to a package with tickets. You can even add one of the Disney Dining Plans for additional savings. This discount expires on July 31, 2013.
Florida Resident Packages - Florida Residents can enjoy a magical getaway with great rates on rooms at select Walt Disney World® Resort hotels for stays most nights June 4 – Aug. 15, 2013. Book early--by June 19--for even lower rates! Upgrade this offer to a Magic Your Way vacation package with minimum 2-day theme park tickets and they'll receive a discount on their tickets! This offer must be booked before August 15, 2013
Any man can be a father
but it takes someone special to be a daddy. Behind all the Disney Gals are
special fathers in each of our lives and today we salute them. They are
fathers, grandfathers and even sons but in all eyes, each and every one of them
is a daddy .
Disney Gal Gayle:
Kevin and Jason, It seems like yesterday that I
brought you home from the hospital, and now you are fathers yourself. Every
milestone of yours was a kind of personal victory for me. Your first smile,
your first word, your first step.... I was just amazed and once again
overwhelmed at what miracles you both were. But to see you both as the amazing
men, husbands and fathers that you are….there are no words to describe the
pride and love I feel.But today after
thirty plus years of looking back, I cannot help but smile. It is a feeling of
fulfillment beyond words. To be able to see the little boys that grew up in a blink of an eye become such incredible dads is what being a mom is all about.We
live our life in phases. You have truly lived your life by believing in the possibilities and living your dreams and you both continue to reach for the stars each and every day. Change is constant and
life is short. So seize the moment and live life to the fullest, have no
regrets. I have learned so much from you and will continue to do so for the
years to come. How to forgive, how to love unconditionally not expecting
anything in return, how to be innocent, how to enjoy the small things in life,
how to be carefree…. The list is endless.... Thank you! You , Heather, Zack and
Thumper have made my life worth living but today is the day to salute you and
celebrate you as daddies! All my love, Mommy
We are now officially in training for the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10 miler to be held on October 5, 2013 (only 110 days away). The 10 mile race sold out quick but if you are still interested in running the Happy Haunted 5K Trail Run, click here while it's still available. runDisney also offers Kids Races which range from the adorable Diaper Dash to the One Mile Race and every participant goes home with a Finisher Medallion. If you have kids coming with you, this is a great way to get them involved in the race weekend.
If you followed along last week, you know that we have started following the official Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10 mile training plan designed by the runDisney Training Consultant, Jeff Galloway, and are now following Week Two.
Click Here for the Training Program for Beginning Runners
Click here for the Training Program for Experienced Runners looking to Improve Time Click Here for the Training Program for Experienced Runners just looking to Finish Upright
On June 5, 2013 I attended my very first invite-only Disney Social Media event, the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration "On-The-Road" in NYC. I was beyond honored and humbled to be invited to such an exclusive event and to be given the opportunity to mingle with some of the greatest and most influential women and men in the business.
Since a couple of my new Disney besties have written such spectacular reviews of the event itself already, I encourage you to check our these posts to hear straight from them.
I have also written some tips for attending this event so if you haven't checked that out, please do! I've been receiving great feedback and am so happy that I was able to help those of you attending in the future. To be linked to the Tips Guide, click here.
Since Stacey, KJ and Kira did such a great job of re-capping the events already, I figured that I would just take the time to show you lots of pictures and walk you through the day! So instead of this reading like a review, it may be more like taking a glimpse of my diary. Enjoy!
vs. table service, making reservations vs. walking up, yes or no to a character
meal, these are just a few of the multitude of questions that can come up when
considering dining at Walt Disney World. Before you get too overwhelmed by the
boundless dining options Disney has to offer, check out these tips on how to
plan a magical Disney dining experience. Every week for the next five weeks I
will give you one of my dos and don’ts of Disney Dining.
Do Make Advanced Dining Reservations.
If you are
planning on dining at any one of Disney’s table service restaurants, especially
if you plan on attending a Disney Character meal, advanced dining reservations
(ADRs) are a must! You can begin making ADRs180 days out from your travel
date. It is highly recommended that you take advantage of this because popular
restaurants, like Chef Mickey’s and Cinderella’s Royal Table, book up months in
advance. The closer you get to your vacation, the harder it will be to find
reservations for most restaurants and character meals. It is not likely
that you will be able to just walk up and get a table without a
Don’t be afraid to try something new.
You can find a
wide variety of restaurants at Walt Disney World that offer an
expansive array of cuisine. Everything from Irish Pub fare to Moroccan
delicacies can be found around the Walt Disney World Resort, and nowhere does
this hold more true than at the World Showcase in Epcot. The World Showcase
alone offers eleven different countries, each offering a broad spectrum of
dining. Disney does not disappoint in the food department, so what better place
to try something new!
Be sure to
check back next week to see what my next Disney Dining Do and Don’t will be!
Written by Meghan Blair, the
"Disney Foodie" -- As a Florida Resident, Meghan combines her love of
Disney and her love of food! She will give you the best restaurant and dining
tips and suggestions to make your meals, just as magical as the rest of your
vacation! Book your next vacation with
Meghan by clicking this link.