Over The Top Mommy

Disney

Disney Social Media Moms Celebration “On the Road” at Disneyland Resort!

One of the best ways to end Summer is with some pixie dust in your inbox, inviting you to attend Disney’s Social Media Moms Celebration “On the Road”. I just happened to be out doing to some back to school shopping when the invitation arrived and I’m pretty sure I let out the world’s loudest squeal inside of Nordstrom! Disney-social-media-moms-celebration-inviteThis “On the Road” event was brought to the Disneyland Resort and held at Paradise Pier Hotel, which is one of the on-property hotels.disney-social-media-moms-paradise-pier-hoteldisney-social-media-moms-paradise-pier-sign

disney-social-media-moms-sign-outsideThe day of the event, everything began bright and early. Upon check-in, I received the most adorable bag filled with tons of Disney’s 60th Diamond Celebration merchandise. The tables in the ballroom were also set with a pair of light up ears and a “Paintbrush” for each attendee. disney-social-media-moms-mickey-artWhen I walked into the ballroom, I was wow-ed by the tables which were all glowing with EARs and “Paintbrushes” at every place setting! I couldn’t wait to use them in the Parks, especially during the “Paint The Night” parade. The centerpieces were adorable too, with the Disney Moms logo. Can you spot anything “hidden”? disney-social-media-moms-tables

disney-social-media-moms-centerpieceI enjoyed a delicious breakfast and had the chance to connect with a bunch of other social influencers. It was fun to make some new friends too. I just love to network!disney-social-media-moms-breakfast

disney-social-media-moms-making-connectionsAfter making the rounds to take photos with many of my lovely influencer mom friends, we sat at the tables, anxious to see which special guests we’d be hearing from.disney-social-media-moms-leanne

Leanne Jakubowski O’Regan, Director of Content Relations for Disney Parks, kicked off the festivities and got everyone very excited about what was to come. In my opinion, she has one of the best jobs in the world AND has the best boss!

Our first speaker was Michele Himmelberg, Public Relations Director at The Disneyland Resort. She had a lot to share with us about what’s new at Disney Parks. Michele recently spent an extended amount of time opening Shanghai Disney and basically explained that the feeling of stepping into a Disney Park, no matter which one it is, is universal around the world. disney-social-media-moms-whats-new-at-disney-parksEach of the Disney Parks has so many new things to see and do. Here are just some of the recent additions to Disney Parks:

  • Tree of LIfe Awakening at Disney’s Animal Kingdom
  • Frozen at the Hyperion Theater at Disney Callifornia Adventure
  • Soarin’ Around the World at Disney California Adventure and Epcot
  • Disney Springs, formerly known as Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World. This new neighborhood has been completely revamped and includes a ton of restaurants and shops.
  • Elena of Avalor is the first Latin-inspired princess and an elegant warrior. She can be found inside the Magic Kingdom

It’s always an exciting time at a Disney Park because there’s almost always something new in store for guests, just right around the corner.  disney-social-media-moms-whats-new-at-disney-parks2Next, we heard from Erin Glover, Editorial Content Director for the Disneyland Resort. Erin is one of my most favorite people to follow on social media, specifically on the Disney Parks Blog channels. My most favorite video that she ever did was her interview with Harold the Abomindable Snowman inside Matterhorn. If you’ve never watched it, here it is! (It’s SO funny!) 

Erin talked to us about The Disney Parks Blog and what it takes to organize the blog, plan the edoritial calendar and everything else that goes into making this 5 year old site a success around the world. disney-social-media-moms-erin-gloverdisney-social-media-moms-walts-tipsThe next portion of the program was something top secret! You know they mean business when they bring in security and you’re told to turn off any and all electronic devices. I don’t know that I’ve ever been involved in something so important!  What a treat! Amy Smeed was there to share some behind-the-scenes footage and facts about the upcoming feature film “MOANAfrom Walt Disney Animation Studios!

Amy Smeed. Photo by Alex Kang. ©2016 Disney. All Rights Reserved.
Amy Smeed. Photo by Alex Kang. ©2016 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

Amy is the first female co-head animator on a feature film at Walt Disney Animation Studios. You can actually feel her passion about her work when she speaks. I can’t really say much about what we learned or what we saw but I can remind you that “Moana” is due to set sail in theaters on November 23, just in time for Thanksgiving, so go see it! disneys-moana-posterSince everyone in attendance works in social media and/or PR, learning about video and making the most of video on your mobile device was super useful for us. Our next speaker was Victoria Lim, Managing Editor of Content at Walt Disney World. She is so much fun and I’d have to say that I love the fact she isn’t shy about being right up there on the screen while on-camera. disney-social-media-moms-victoria-lim-on-cameraMany social influencers already use a lot of video to share their content but there are also others who need help getting started. Victoria literally walked us step-by-step, through some of her favorite apps to make videos including Magisto and Videolicious. disney-social-media-moms-victoria-lim-video-appsWhen I heard Leanne introduce the next guest as someone who had starred in both “Saved By the Bell” and “Beverly Hills 90210”, my teenage self got ready to “fangirl”. Out on the stage walked Tiffani Thiessen. She seemed just as excited to be at Disneyland as we all were and shared with us about how her daughter loves visiting the Parks a lot more now that she’s getting older.disney-social-media-moms-tiffani-thiessen Tiffani shared about her latest ventures which include her own cooking show, “Dinner at Tiffani’s” and publishing her own blog, in addition to being a mom and a wife. She seemed as busy as all of us are, juggling it all. She also shared that she does all of her own recipes and cooking for her show, as well as all of her own photography and writing for the blog. She said that she also runs the social media herself. I appreciated her efforts to stay authentic and connect with fans and readers.  I love how real she was when she said:

I don’t succeed every day but I try. I try to balance it all but it doesn’t always happen.

disney-social-media-moms-ginger-zeeThe final speaker of the morning, Ginger Zee,  who is also a “working mom” trying to balance it all. Ginger is the Chief Meteorologist for ABC News and Good Morning America. She also recently starred on “Dancing With the Stars” just 7 weeks after having her 2nd child. She is a strong, confident woman who admitted to knowing that you have to give up on perfection. (even though just looking at her and hearing her speak you’d swear she is perfect) Ginger spoke about giving up on perfection, balancing it all, and learning to focus your time. She said it best when she spoke about “living in the moment” and focusing on what’s in front of you. I also admire her statement about being able to do it all and have a child. I sometimes think there are people in this world who think that mothers can’t do it all. disney-social-media-moms-you-canIt was such a magical morning of learning, It was a chance to be inspired. It was also an opportunity to connect with others like me. I think most of all, attending Disney Social Media Moms Celebration was an opportunity to take some time for me and to be able to do something that makes me happy….which always involves Disney! It was such an honor to be invited! disney-social-media-moms-mickey

I was invited as a guest of Disney Parks to attend this conference. I was also provided with admission  to enter the Parks afterwards. All opinions are 100% my own. Some images and graphics are property of Disney. 

 

The Main Street Electrical Parade is Returning To Disneyland!

I was elated to find out some magical news last night on the Disney Parks Twitter….thetweet

Did you see? They announced that the Main Street Electrical Parade, currently residing at Walt Disney World, will have it’s final run (for now) at the Magic Kingdom on October 9th before it hits the road for California! This is the best news for Guests of the Disneyland Resort, although I do feel sad for anyone who will be missing this parade when it leaves Walt Disney World. The Main Street Electrical Parade, actually had a run as Disney’s Electrical Parade” at Disney California Adventure park from 2001 to 2010, but it hasn’t been in Disneyland park in 20 years, so we’re ecstatic! According to the Disney Parks Blog, the Main Street Electrical Parade will be at Disneyland as a limited-time encore engagement, at the beginning of 2017. tinkerbellCurrently, I just feel like Christmas came early! After it was just last week that the “Paint the Night” parade would be going dark at the end of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration, this news about the Main Street Electrical Parade is so exciting. However, on the Disney Parks Blog they also announced that the “Paint the Night” parade will actually return on select nights during the holiday season later this year! Yay!

To keep up on the latest updates, you can visit the Disneyland our eye on Disneyland Resort’s Entertainment Calendar here.

This is not a sponsored post, I just like writing about Disney a lot! All opinions are 100% my own. Main Street Electrical Parade image property of Walt Disney Company.  

 

 

Halloween Time at The Disneyland Resort Begins September 9 + Mickey’s Halloween Party Dates

It’s hard to believe that another year has almost gone by since Halloween was here! Here it is, the middle of summer and I’m absolutely giddy about the arrival of Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort and this year it begins September 9th! halloween-timeI can’t even tell you which part of it I’m most excited for because there is so much going on at the Resort during that time of year. Plus, it also begins the entire Holiday Seasondisney-wallMickey’s Halloween Party 
So, let’s first talk about Mickey’s Halloween Party, because that’s what Disney lovers of all ages look forward to during all year, right? The event requires a separate ticket and takes place on 17 select nights, beginning Friday, Sept. 23, inside of Disneyland. Entry to Disneyland Park before the party is included with a Mickey’s Halloween Party ticket. Guests have the opportunity to play in Disneyland park for three hours before the party starts, and then go trick or treating , for candy and healthy treats,  in the ultimate Disney neighborhood.

Mickey’s Halloween Party has some extra thrilling surprises around every corner and treats party guests to some unforgettable experiences including:

  • The eerie atmosphere along Main Street, U.S.A., animated Halloween images (ghosts, bats, pumpkins and skeletons) appear and disappear mysteriously on the facades of buildings throughout the evening
  • The ghoulish Cadaver Dans quartet performs Halloween tunes aboard a drifting graveyard-themed raft, on the fog-filled Rivers of America in New Orleans Square and Frontierland halloween-time-at-the-disneyland-resort-dans
  • The sensational “Halloween Screams” fireworks spectacular, which is a guest favorite presented exclusively for guests of Mickey’s Halloween Party and is hosted by “Master of Scare-omonies” Jack Skellington. "Halloween Screams-A Villainous Surprise in the Skies"
  • A family-friendly dance party to rock out to at Tomorrowland Terrace
  • Disney Villains at select locations for photos and character greetings
  • Mickey Mouse and his pals dressed in their Halloween costumes
  • Nearly all the favorite Disneyland rides and attractions will be open to party guests, plus Haunted Mansion Holiday and Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy.
  • New for Mickey’s Halloween Party in 2016, The Headless Horseman of Sleepy Hollow rides his ghostly black steed and carries his flickering jack-o-lantern through the heart of Disneyland, heralding the arrival of Mickey’s Halloween Party character cavalcade, (The character is from Disney’s animated feature, “The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad.”)

Adults and children are encouraged to dress in costume for the party as they trick-or-treat throughout Disneyland for a scary good time. For costume policy guidelines, please check http://www.Disneyland.com for prior your arrival, so you don’t have any surprises. Tickets for Mickey’s Halloween Party* go on sale for Disneyland Resort Annual Passholders, Disney Vacation Club members and Disney Visa card holders on Thursday, July 21. General public ticket sales begin Thursday, July 28.

HALLOWEEN TIME AT THE DISNEYLAND RESORT (ANAHEIM, Calif.) – Haunted Mansion Holiday brings the frightfully fun cheer of “Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas" to the Disneyland Resort. The friendly spooks of Halloween Time return in 2016 from Sept. 9 through Oct. 31 along with fun seasonal décor, themed food and beverage offerings and attractions that get a special seasonal overlay for Halloween Time. (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland)

What Else To Expect During Halloween Time
Now let’s talk about Halloween Time in general at the Disneyland Resort. Whether you are going to attend one of the ticketed Mickey’s Halloween Party Nights or just visiting the Parks during Halloween Time, you’re going to be in Halloween awe!  Some of the temporary Halloween offerings include:

  • Jack Skellington makes his annual appearance in Disneyland to take over the Haunted Mansion and bring Haunted Mansion Holiday back to New Orleans Square. Haunted Mansion Holiday is inspired by the classic animated film “Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas” and transforms the Mansion with a collision of Halloween spookiness and Christmas cheer. Oct. 3, 2016 marks the 15th anniversary of this special attraction’s premiere in Disneyland.HALLOWEEN TIME AT THE DISNEYLAND RESORT (ANAHEIM, Calif.) – Haunted Mansion Holiday brings the frightfully fun cheer of “Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas" to the Disneyland Resort. The friendly spooks of Halloween Time return in 2016 from Sept. 9 through Oct. 31 along with fun seasonal décor, themed food and beverage offerings and attractions that get a special seasonal overlay for Halloween Time. (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland)
  • Guests in search of Halloween chills may “drop in” to visit the ghostly full-time residents of The Twilight Zone™ Tower of Terror in Disney California Adventure. Here, in the remains of the Hollywood Tower Hotel, dwell the spirits of hotel guests who disappeared during a “supernatural” event on Halloween Night in 1939. halloween-time-at-the-disneyland-resort-TOT
  • Spooky Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy in Tomorrowland draws guests back again and again during the Halloween season. The unique Halloween-themed experience launches voyagers into a haunted section of the universe, where ghosts appear out of the starry darkness and swirling galaxies of Space Mountain, reaching out as if to grab guests as they speed through space. The exhilarating drops and curves are punctuated by piercing screams, creepy sound effects and haunting music.
  • On select, non-Mickey’s Halloween Party nights, guests visiting Disneyland will enjoy a special treat: the “Fantasy in the Sky” fireworks spectacular. In addition, the dynamic “Mickey’s Soundsational Parade” will march down Main Street, U.S.A., each day throughout Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort.
  • Also, in Frontierland, the traditional Dia de los Muertos is observed through Tuesday, Nov. 1, with a holiday skeleton display in the plaza near the entrance of Rancho del Zocalo. Park 10-12-09

Ticket Information and Purchases for Mickey’s Halloween Party 
Tickets for Mickey’s Halloween Party* may be purchased online and on mobile devices at Disneyland.com/party, as well as at the Disneyland Resort main gate and by phone at 714-781-4400. Guests may check for availability for the 17 nights: Friday, Sept. 23; Monday, Sept. 26, Wednesday, Sept. 28; Friday, Sept. 30; Monday, Oct. 3; Wednesday, Oct. 5; Friday, Oct. 7; Monday, Oct. 10; Wednesday, Oct. 12; Friday, Oct. 14; Monday, Oct. 17; Wednesday, Oct. 19; Friday, Oct. 21; Monday, Oct. 24; Wednesday, Oct. 26; Saturday, Oct. 29; and Monday, Oct. 31, Halloween night.

Tickets purchased in advance are available at a discount on select nights. Tickets purchased on the day of the event are $89 each. All tickets to Mickey’s Halloween Party on Saturday, Oct. 29, and Monday, Oct. 31, are $99 each. Mickey’s Halloween Party is a non-smoking event. Smoking will be permitted only in the Esplanade outside the Disneyland main entrance. Please note: Online and mobile purchases are not available the day of the event. Parking is not included in the ticket price, and parking fees will apply.

MICKEY'S HALLOWEEN PARTY (ANAHEIM, Calif.) – The “Halloween Screams” fireworks spectacular lights up the skies surrounding Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland park, as part of the entertainment exclusive to the annual Mickey's Halloween Party. Returning for 17 nights in 2016, beginning Friday, Sept. 23, Mickey’s Halloween Party is a time for guests to dress up for a ghoulish good time and enjoy seasonal scares such as Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy and Haunted Mansion Holiday. (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland)

For more information about Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort, please visit here. Entertainment and attractions are subject to change without notice. Also, don’t forget that Guests may currently enjoy the Disneyland Diamond Celebration which continues through Labor Day, Sept. 5!

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are 100% my own. Some images are property of the Disneyland Resort. 

 

Spring Dapper Day EXPO at Disneyland® Resort April 30-May 1

In case you hadn’t heard, Spring Dapper Day will take place this year on May 1 at the Disneyland Resort. These fun and fashionable gatherings are held twice a year at the Disney parks and are attended by over 20,000 well-dressed guests.
In addition to the in-parks event, there’ll be a free DAPPER DAY Expo held at the Disneyland Hotel on Saturday April 30 from noon-7pm and Sunday, May 1 from 10am-7pm. Note: Early Bird Tickets for Saturday morning will be available for purchase here. (see below)dapper-day-expo-2016The free 2-day DAPPER DAY® Expo marketplace celebrates “stylish living from yesterday & today!” Shop vintage and classic fashions for men, women, and children, jewelry, hats, cosmetics, men’s hair cuts and shaves offered by Port City Pomade and Suavecoto Pomade, home decor, and more, all at The Disneyland Hotel. There’ll be live music and dancing! Visit the DAPPER DAY Photo Spot and pick up exclusive DAPPER DAY merchandise, too!

spring-dapper-day-mapHere’s the EXPO Schedule:
Saturday, April 30

  • 10a-12 Early Bird Entry BUY EARLY BIRD TICKETS HERE spring-dapper-day-early-bird
  • 2-2:45 & 5-6p Performances by the GRAMMY-nominated CALIFORNIA FEETWARMERS
  • 1:30 & 4:30p Dance Presentation & Dance Class with THE BOBBYSOX BRIGADE / ATOMIC BALLROOM

Sunday, May 1

  • 1-1:45 & 5-5p Performances by BIG SANDY & HIS FLY-RITE BOYS
  • 2-3p “Disneybound Meet & Greet with Leslie Kay” Joined by Brizzy Voices, Tessa Netting, James Hull, Lizzy Jones, and Tingamavlogs(Near Expo Stage)
  • 12:30 & 4:30p Dance Presentation & Dance Class with THE BOBBYSOX BRIGADE / ATOMIC BALLROOM

spring-dapper-day-expo-1

Some of the amazing sponsors this year include: Pinup Girl, Alice Through the Looking Glass, PUBLIC Bikes and LA Weekly! spring-dapper-day-giveawyEnter to win a special customized DAPPER DAY PUBLIC Bike inspired by the Special Edition PUBLIC C7 9th Avenue. For a limited time only, you can enter the PUBLIC x DAPPER DAY Giveaway for a chance to win a grand prize bike worth $699. Visit here to enter the giveaway.

PARKING: If you are visiting the DAPPER DAY Expo, at The Disneyland Hotel, but NOT visiting the theme parks, you may use Downtown Disney Parking (first 2 hours free), or self parking at The Disneyland  Hotel – let the parking attendant know you are attending a Dapper Day event in the hotel.

If you are visiting the theme parks AND the Expo, you may want to first park in Downtown Disney and shop the Expo with 2-hours free parking, then move your car to the Mickey & Friends structure and take Disney’s tram to the park. You may also take our free shuttle from the Grand Californian to the Expo or walk directly from the Mickey and Friends parking structure to the Expo at The Disneyland Hotel. (It’s the same distance to walk from the parking structure to the Expo as walking from the tram drop off area to the Expo). NOTE: Monorail  will not be operating.  SEE HERE FOR PARKING PRICING

For more information about Dapper Day and Dapper Day EXPO, visit http://www.dapperday.com.

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are 100% my own. Images and logos are property of Dapper Day. 

 

Bibs Still Available for the 2016 Disneyland® Half Marathon Weekend

The 2016 Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend will be held Sept. 1- Sept. 4 this year at the Disneyland® Resort. This year, , a non-profit organization that works to prevent child abuse. has joined the runDisney Charity Partners program for the 2016 Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend.

run-disney-halfThe races are a great way to get the whole family outside and active while also being a ton of fun! Did I mention that every runner has the chance to pose with Disney characters at the finish line? Team-All4Kids

Currently, there are still bibs left in the Half Marathon, 10K and 5K. Come and run with Team All4Kids and support a wonderful cause by helping to provide children with brighter futures. disney-half-weekend-photosFor more information about the Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend or to register, please visit  https://www.all4kids.org/rundisney or the general Disney event page: http://www.rundisney.com/disneyland-half-marathon/.

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are 100% my own. Images and logos are property of Children’s Bureau of Southern California and Disneyland Resort. 

 

The Disney Parks Egg-stravaganza Was SO Much Fun!

We were super “egg-cited” to fit a trip to Disneyland Resort into our schedule this weekend, specifically to do the 2016 Egg-stravaganza Easter Egg Hunt! This family friendly, hunt for special hidden “eggs” , themed to Disney characters, is another fun way create memories on your visit to the Resort. As you discover each egg, you record your findings by placing the corresponding sticker on the specially themed Egg-stravaganza map (which are available for purchase) to represent that location. At the end of your hunt, you may return to any redemption center with your map and collect your special Disney “surprise”. disney-eggstravaganza-mapThis year, there are 3 different Egg-stravaganza maps (and hunts) to choose from at the Resort.  Maps, which come with the stickers, can be purchased for $5.95, plus tax. There are no discounts for these. You can find the 2016 Egg-stravaganza maps at the following parks and locations:

  • Disneyland park – Disneyana, Disney Showcase, “it’s a small world” Toy Shop, Little Green Men Store Command, Pieces of Eight, Pioneer Mercantile and Stromboli’s.
  • Disney California Adventure park – Elias & Co., Humphrey’s Service & Supplies, Off the Page, Oswald’s, Sarge’s Surplus Hut and Treasures in Paradise
  • Downtown Disney District – Anna & Elsa’s Boutique, D Street, Disney Pin Traders, WonderGround Gallery and World of Disney Store
  • Hotels of the Disneyland Resort – Acorns Gifts & Goods, Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa; Mickey in Paradise, Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel; and Fantasia Shop, Disneyland Hotel

disney-parks-eggstravaganza-on-the-huntWe opted for the one inside Disneyland Park. I purchased 2 maps. Our plan was to use one of them and keep the other as a souvenir. That’s what huge Disney fans like us do.disney-parks-eggstravaganza-we-did-itI’m not going to post a ton of spoilers because that would take away all of the fun for you, I’m just going to list some tips to help you plan a little, in case you’re attempting to fit one of these hunts into your day. The hunt takes you on a search around a good part of Disneyland. It was fairly crowded on the day we visited, since it’s Spring Break, but we had no problem navigating our way around to find the eggs. disney-parks-eggstravaganza-basketAlthough we brought an Easter basket full of mini Tsum Tsums, as backup support, you don’t need one in order to do the hunt. However, it does make for cute pictures, don’t you agree? disney-parks-eggstravaganza-stickersMy daughter insisted we find every single Easter egg, so it probably took a couple of hours, total. She’s 10 years old and was really “into” it so, as you can see, the hunt is a great activity for kids of all ages. The “hidden” eggs are all really cute and we got excited every time we discovered another one! disney-parks-eggstravaganza-tink-eggThis Tink egg is the only egg I”m going to post a picture of because it was my favorite one! (I’m not a fan of spoilers!) disney-parks-eggstravaganza-flowersWhether you choose to hunt for eggs or not, just return with your map to one of these redemption locations: Elias & Co. at Disney California Adventure park; Disney Showcase in Disneyland park; World of Disney Store in the Downtown Disney District at the Disneyland Resort before April 2 to pick up your surprise. disney-parks-eggstravaganza-prizesThere are 6 different “surprises” to choose from. (These are the 2 that we chose.) Oh and YES, they let you keep the map afterwards! Yay! disney-parks-eggstravaganza-keep-the-map

disney-parks-eggstravaganza-surprisesI recommend getting there to participate sooner, rather than later, as the maps are only available until March 27, or when supplies last! Have you participated in the Disney Parks Egg-stravaganza before? If not, are you planning to do so this year? Share your thoughts with me in the comments below!

My Perfect Celebration: A Disney Birthday Button and Dinner at Steakhouse 55

One of my most favorite annual birthday traditions is to get a Disney birthday button and celebrate my day at Disneyland Resort. The most special part about getting to wear one of a birthday button around the parks and the Resort, is that Cast Members everywhere will continue to wish you a “Happy Birthday”! Some may even catch you by surprise when they call you out by name! steakhouse-55-my-bd-buttonThis year, my birthday was a little different though because we had to be out of town (for a cheer competition) on my actual day. My daughter was so sweet as she insisted we stop by the Resort on our way out of town, just to grab my button and spend a little time in the parks. We only had a few hours to do so, but we made every minute count and got to:

  • grab my 2016 birthday button
  • go down Main Street and give a bunch of High 4’s to Cast Members
  • ride the Matterhorn Bobsleds
  • hang out with Farley the Fiddler
  • grab a Matterhorn Macaroon for the road steakhouse-55-matterhorn-macaroon

As we drove away from Disneyland Resort that morning to get on the road, my daughter said, “Mommy, I’m sorry we barely got time to celebrate your birthday in the parks today.” steakhouse-55-hitting-the-roadLittle did I know, just as soon as we returned home from our road trip that Sunday afternoon, I’d be swept away from home and back to do some more celebrating! This time, we had a reservation at Steakhouse 55 at the Disneyland Hotel! Wow, what a special birthday treat!

steakhouse-55-disneyland-hotelSteakhouse 55 is one of my favorite places to dine at the resort. The menu offers so many delicious choices but I’m such a creature of habit that I always end up ordering practically the same meal, beginning with a celebratory glass of wine. steakhouse-55-menuI can’t get enough of the Steakhouse 55 Wedge Salad. It’s topped with cherry tomato, bacon lardons, candied pecans, and the most amazing blue cheese vinaigrette. Although I’ve never actually asked for it, I’ll bet the recipe for the dressing is a secret! steakhouse-55-wedge-saladThe Center-cut Filet Mignon at Steakhouse 55 never disappoints. Neither do the sides you can order to compliment your meal. We went with some Yukon Gold Mashed Potatoes, which are topped with traditional brown gravy and green onion, and some Steamed Local Asparagus, complimented with olive oil hollandaise and Maldon-flaked Sea Salt. steakhouse-55-center-cut-filetsteakhouse-55-asparagusBy this point, I was extremely content and almost too full for dessert…almost! I felt extra special when our server, Cast Member David, brought out a special dessert just for me. Mickey was right there on top, along with a single candle to make a birthday wish. steakhouse-55-mickey-birthday-dessertI can’t tell you what I wished for because it won’t come true, but let’s just say it was Disney-related! steakhouse-55-what-a-magical-birthdayMy birthday dinner at Steakhouse 55 was so Magical. I’m happy that my family closed out my birthday weekend by surprising me and taking me there!  It was delicious and the service was wonderful. Have you gotten to eat there yet? If not, I highly recommend making a reservation soon!

 

 

Celebrate the Magical Holiday Season at the Disneyland Resort!

If you haven’t visited the Disneyland Resort during the holiday season yet, it’s something I highly recommend because it’s even more magical than ever and there is so much happening this time of year. disney-holidays-ticket-to-a-magical-dayA visit to the Disneyland Resort during the holiday season, especially during Disney’s Diamond Celebration, will make you feel like a kid in a candy store. You’re bound to make a ton of new family memories together on your visit, which you’ll cherish forever!disney-holidays-kid-in-a-candy-storeI’m excited to share a few of my personal favorites and must-dos with you, in hopes that it will help make the most of your day at “The Merriest Place on Earth“! There’s actually a ton to see and do and if possible, I suggest a 2-day visit at minimum so you can fit it all in.

Take a Family Tree Photo 

Whether you choose to visit Disneyland Park or Disney California Adventure Park first, prepare to be in constant awe….not only by the glamorous decorations adorning both of the parks, but also the larger-than-life Christmas tree that stands in each one. There’s also a tree standing tall in Downtown Disney and inside each of the hotels. disney-holiday-family-tree-photo A Disney Christmas Tree is the perfect holiday backdrop for photos and you’ll find the friendly Disney PhotoPass Photographers standing by to snap your pictures, using their professional equipment. PhotoPass pictures are easily accessed online afterwards and available for purchase. Disney-Holidays-Buena-Vista-Street

*Tip: Take advantage of Disney PhotoPass services available in both parks. The high quality photographs would look beautiful on your holiday cards and in your family’s memory album. 
Check out the Festive Attractions

During the holiday season, a few attractions get extra special holiday makeovers and are all dressed up for the holidays. You’ll definitely want to make it onto all of these out during your trip to the parks. Disney-Holidays-Haunted-Mansion-Holiday

  • Haunted Mansion Holiday – the Haunted Mansion is transformed during the holidays with jack o’ lanterns and wreaths, terrifying toys and kooky characters from Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before ChristmasDisney-Holidays-Haunted-Mansion-Holiday-Facade
  • “it’s a small world” Holiday – Take an enchanting cruise around the world and experience how the holidays are celebrated internationally! Disney-Holidays-Small-WorldBoth the inside and outside of this attraction are adorned with some of the most beautiful decorations you’ll see and there are colorful twinkle lights around! Be prepared to sing along in all of the different languages. Disney-Holidays-Peace-on-Earth
  • Jingle Cruise – Take an extra jolly cruise through the jungle with The Jungle Cruise skippers and see how they, along with the native tribes, celebrate this time of year.

*Tip: Try grabbing your first Fast Pass for one of these popular festive attractions, first thing in the day.

Indulge in some extra special holiday treats Disney-Holidays-TreatsDuring the holiday season at Disneyland Resort, you’ll find some extra special treats in both parks. I can never get enough popcorn or Mickey pretzels, but this time of year, there are also many other treats to sample during holiday time. Disney-Holidays-Mickey-AppleMickey apples are a popular choice as are chocolate and peppermint-covered Tigger Tails. Why not try a few different treats? They’re even perfect for sharing. Disney-Holidays-Holiday-Time-Treats

*Tip: If you have someone in your party with special dietary needs, be sure to stop by City Hall and request a list of eateries that offer choices for special dietary needs. 

Holiday Entertainment Schedule 

Disneyland Resort has an extensive year-round schedule of entertainment which includes some special holiday additions to the schedule that you won’t want to miss. Disney-Holidays-Christmas-Fantasy-float

  • “A Christmas Fantasy” parade (Disneyland Park) – Guests can catch Mickey, Minnie, and an entire parade of all their favorite Disney characters, dancing and singing and celebrating the season, from the top of Main Street, U.S.A. to ‘It’s a Small World”. Don’t forget to wave to Santa and tell him what you’re wishing for this year. Disney-Holidays-Christmas-Fantasy-Mickey
  •  Disney ¡Viva Navidad! Street Party (Disney California Adventure Park) – This vibrant street celebration will give you a taste of some Latino holiday traditions and features festive music, dancing, and storytelling. Disney-Holidays-Viva-Navidad-DonaldDonald and his friends Panchito and Jose sing and dance up on their float while Folklorico dancers, mariachi and samba musicians and get the party going on the street. Disney-Holidays-Viva-Navidad-MojigangaThere are also 12-feet tall mojiganga puppets, including 2 of Santa and Mrs. Claus that join in the celebration too! Disney-Holidays-Viva-Navidad-SantaBe prepared to sing and dance along as you join in on some of the Latino holiday celebrations of la Navidad!
  • Disneyland Forever Fireworks (Disneyland Park) – Fireworks are a favorite of park guests of all ages. There are several great viewing spots throughout Disneyland Park but the fireworks can actually be seen across the Resort.

*Tip: Plan out which entertainment you’d like to fit into your day’s schedule right when you arrive at the Resort. There are sometimes advanced dining and dessert packages available for some features. Stop by Guest Services to obtain more  information. 

Get Festive with Holiday Merchandise

Whether you’re shopping for souvenirs to commemorate your trip or need to grab some holiday gifts to put under the tree, there’s so much festive holiday merchandise available throughout the parks. Some of the most popular items this year include:

  • Character Plush – You’ll find plush characters of all sizes, wearing their special holiday attire. It’s often difficult to choose just one, which is why we end up purchasing several. Disney-Holidays-Character-Plush
  • Holiday Balloons – A Disney holiday balloon is guaranteed to bring a smile to any child’s face. Disney-Holidays-Balloon
  • Holiday “Ears” and hats – There are special holiday hats and festive pairs of EARS to purchase in shops and carts throughout the Resort. Disney-Holidays-minnie-ears-hat
  • Holiday Glow Necklaces – These are so much fun to wear, especially at night! Disney-Holidays-holiday-glow-necklace

Keep Your Eye Out For Santa! Disney-Holidays-Santa-float

There are multiple opportunities at the Resort to see Santa. He’s easy to spot in “A Christmas Fantasy” Parade. You can also find him in the parks to take photos with. It’s hard to think about the holidays without thinking about “The Big Guy”, isn’t it?

Consider Purchasing a Disney Annual Pass for Yourself or Someone Else

One of the most Magical gifts anyone could receive is a Disney Annual Passport. Visits to the parks, discounts on food and merchandise and other benefits are just some of the reasons to purchase one. During your visit to the Resort, you’ll have the opportunity to apply the cost of your Park ticket towards the purchase of an Annual Passport. Click here for more information about Disney Annual Passports. Disney-Holidays-Small-World-FacadeHave YOU had the opportunity to visit Disneyland Resort during the holidays? If so, what’s your favorite thing to see or do? Leave a comment below and share with me! Happy Holidays! Disney-Holidays-Happy-Holidays

Disclosure: My family and I were invited to Holiday Family Media day at Disneyland Resort and were provided with park tickets. No monetary compensation was received. All opinions are 100% my own. 

Mickey’s Beach Bash at Disney Social Media Moms Celebration #DisneySMMC

As if staying at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort during the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration wasn’t amazing enough, we were invited to attend a private family party on the shore of the Beach & Yacht Clubs on one of the nights. mickeys-beach-bash-family-photoAs our family walked together towards the beach, we could hear relaxing steel drum music playing in the distance. The beautiful sunset that evening reflected off Disney’s Boardwalk and the lake in the background. I loved the casual vibe in the air and how relaxed everyone was. It was so fun to see Mickey & his friends dressed in “beachy” attire for the occasion, I was also in awe of the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration sand sculpture that must have taken quite some time to carefully construct.mickeys-beach-bash-sand-sculpture

Everywhere we turned, there were mini buffets set up for guests to enjoy delicious salads, gourmet main dishes and delectable desserts. The chefs at Disney really took the time to put together a menu that offered something for everyone in a family, even including adults and children with dietary restrictions and food allergies. mickeys-beach-bash-buffet2mickeys-beach-bash-buffet1There was also an bar set up along the beach, serving all kinds of drinks, including some refreshing tropical libations for the adults. It’s much more fun to drink Rum Punch through a Mickey straw, don’t you agree? mickeys-beach-bash-at-the-disney-social-media-moms-celebration-drinksThe kids had a blast playing on the sand and dancing with the Mickey and his frends, as well as some of the young, energetic Disney dancers. My daughter adores Teen Beach Movie, so this kind of dancing and entertainment was right up her alley! mickeys-beach-bash-emi-and-iI enjoyed myself immensely and took advantage of the time to connect with other social media Disney friends like Flowers Croon and her daughter. mickeys-beach-bash-us-and-flowers-croonMickey’s Beach Bash was a blast and definitely a night our family will always remember!

I was invited to The Disney Social Media Moms Celebration as media and received a media rate for our accommodations. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

 

4 Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration Merchandise Items I WILL Be Buying For My Daughter! #Disneyland60

Raise your hand if you’re really excited about the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration! (raises hand) Me!!!! diamond-celebration-bannerI’m actually more than excited for It! Although I didn’t have a chance to attend the 24-Hour Kickoff Party at Disneyland Resort this year, I did sneak over to the parks for a few hours the following weekend. I don’t even think I saw a quarter of the special merchandise availalble during this glorious time at Disneyland Resort and yet, I’ve already managed to make a list of the first 4 Diamond Celebration Merchandise items I WILL be buying the for my daughter! I say “the first 4” because I know there will be so many other things I’ll want to buy aside from these 4.

minnie-headband

I-need-these-earsThis special sequin Minnie Mouse headband with a jeweled bow is a must-have for every Disney girl! The way these ears were displayed in this box made them look extra fancy, too! What girl doesn’t dream about getting their hands on a pair of these? I need a pair of these to wear to the parks. Oh wait, I mean my daughter needs some. Ok maybe we’ll both get a pair of these ears.

mickey-mitts

sequin-mickey-mittsOne of my favorite merchandise items, normally available in white (and a couple of pastel colors), are the giant Mickey mitts because whenever we make it into Disneyland at Rope Drop, we love to walk down Main Street and give all of the Cast Members “a High Four”!  When I saw the sequin version, I immediately added them to the shopping list!

anniversary-doll

disney-doll

 

This precious doll is dressed for a day in the parks! I love everything about her, especially her tiny set of EARs! She’s ready to celebrate this joyous occasion! castle-set

light-up-castleOh, I saved the best, and my most favorite item, for last! This castle play set is beautiful and hardly compares to the regular castle play set we bought when my daughter was 3! This Limited Edition castle is blinged out, just like the real Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, and it lights up!  I NEED IT! 

are-you-readySo, what are YOU most excited for at the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration? Do you have any favorite merchandise that you’re hoping to grab, or perhaps already have? Do tell!

To see more of the Disneyland Resort Diamond Celebration Merchandise, take a peek at this video from the Disney Parks Blog! Warning: You’re going to want it all, too!

 

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