Over The Top Mommy

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When Pixie Dust Lands in Your Inbox #DisneySMMC

Just a few weeks ago, right in the middle of getting ready to say goodbye to summer and go back to work, some Pixie Dust landed in my inbox. If you’ve ever had this happen to you, the feeling is almost indescribable. What I can say is that reading a email subject that reads, “Invitation to Disney Social Media Moms Celebration “On-the-Road” at the Disneyland Resort”, took my breath away and put tears in my eyes! (no joke!) disney-social-media-moms-on-the-road-celebrationAlthough I had the opportunity to attend last year as well, being part of a Disney event like this is just something I hold close to my heart. It never gets any less magical for me either. Just as soon as I let out a big scream of excitement in my empty house (because no one else was around) I immediately shared the magical news on my social channels…because that’s what mom bloggers (like me) do.  disney-social-media-moms-tweetWhat is the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration “On-The-Road”? 
If you’ve never heard of the Disney Social Media Moms Conference “On-The-Road”, it’s a half day conference put on by Disney Parks at various “on the road” locations around the U.S., as well as in Canada. The conference is by invitation only and extended to mom and dad bloggers and other social influencers, mostly drawing from those who share about their love of Disney online.disneyland-resort-celebrate-summer-mickey The “On-The-Road” conference is a mini version of the bigger Disney Social Media Moms Celebration which is a much larger, multi-day annual conference also put on by Disney Parks. The purpose of this conference is to give attendees sort of a “snapshot” of what’s to come in the near future for Disney. It might include information about additions to Disney Parks around the world, Disney Cruise information, the Disney Parks Blog, or even give attendees a sneak peek at upcoming Disney movies. There are several great speakers at the conference who provide helpful information about blogging, social media, and the digital space and inspire all of those in the room. disneyland-resort-celebrate-summer-max-passSince this particular conference location was at the Disneyland Resort, each attendee also had the opportunity to spend the rest of the day, inside the Parks, with their family. What an absolute treat! There’s nothing quite like making Disney memories together! Don’t you agree?3-things-i-did-to-get-ready-for-disney-social-media-moms-on-the-road-celebrationI Updated My Business Cards 
As soon as I RSVP’d for the conference, I reached out to one of my favorite artists to have a personalized Disney portrait made that I could use on new, updated business cards for this conference. I’ve followed Amy Rose Studios on Instagram for a while and adore her artistic ability. How cute did my portrait turn out? my-amy-rose-studios-disney-portrait-smallerIn the social media (and business) world, it’s always important to carry business cards with you that have the most recent, updated information. When you connect with people at a conference like this, you want them to be able to find you afterwards, right? I really wanted business cards to bring with me that had a Disney touch, so I ordered some with my new Disney portrait on them and I love how they turned out!disney-social-media-moms-business-cardsI Picked Out My Conference Outfit! 
The next thing I did was to shop for the perfect conference outfit. I considered just going casual since I’d be spending the day afterwards inside Disneyland Resort but opted to dress up and change later. I must’ve spent 6 hours looking in each and every store at the mall, searching for the perfect outfit. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to Disneybound a character or just wear a nice dress? Finally, I found a cute, summery, cotton top and skirt at White House, Black Market. I paired the outfit with some high, peep-toe red wedges and brought some EARs with me. disney-social-media-moms-celebration-on-the-road-what-i-woreI Made Some Connections with New Disney Friends Beforehand 
I have a confession to make: I sometimes tend to stay in my own “safe” circle in social situations. For this conference, I made a conscious effort to connect with some new(er) Disney friends online beforehand, so I’d feel more comfortable talking to them in person when the big day came. A few of these super Disney Gals include Cam from Growing up Goofy, Dawn from I Am a Mommy Nerd, Julie from Mom Rewritten, and Leslie from Trips with Tykes. These ladies were super sweet and fun to sit with at the actual conference! I highly recommended stepping outside your usual circle. It’s really the only way to grow!disney-junior-dance-partyWell, I can’t wait to share more about my magical morning at the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration “On-The-Road” at Disneyland Resort so keep an eye on my blog for more posts to come soon!

Join in the conversation by following the #DisneySMMC hashtag and also @DisneyMoms on Twitter.

 

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. 

 

Your Love For Disney…..When Did It Start For YOU? #DisneySMMC #WDIS4U

 

when-did-it-start-for-youAs a mom who loves Disney and shares A LOT about Disney online, it was such an honor for me to receive an invitation to the 2015 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. I am so grateful for all of the opportunities we (the attendees) received at the celebration, including access to hear amazing speakers like Jeffrey Epstein from D23.  Jeffrey’s presentation at the conference had me teary-eyed (in a good, Disney way, of course) and beyond emotional. He shared one of D23’s latest campaigns with us called “When Did It Start For You?“.

when-did-it-start-for-youThe campaign asks Disney fans to share when they first remember falling in love with Disney and becoming a lifelong fan. It was fun to watch different clips of celebrities, a Disney Legend, some current Imagineers, and even some D23 fans. I couldn’t help but tear up as I watched each video. Listening to these people who all shared a common Disney bond share about their own personal reasons for loving Disney and feeling inspired by Disney was something I could relate to.

when-did-it-start-for-youWhat inspired me the most though was when I looked up at the screen and realized there was a “When Did It Start For You” clip of someone that I knew up there! She’s mostly an acquaintance I know online, which is how this whole social media thing works, but regardless, to look up and hear Ashley speaking about her own experience was literally speaking straight to my own heart! The picture of her as a young girl was adorable!

Ashley-telling-her-own-storyIt really hit home when she proceeded to talk about being bullied and how her love for Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” was her own escape from the ugliness of bullying. The “Ashley” I know online is a fun-loving, adorable Disney girl who posts tons of beautiful Disney photos. I had NO IDEA  about all she’d been through and that she’d overcome so much.  I admire her immensely for sharing her story on the big screen!

Watch her story here (you’ll probably need a tissue):

for-me

I’m trying to remember when it started for me? I can’t remember exactly though. I think I was a baby! I grew up living pretty close to Disneyland. When our family did visit Disneyland (it was a single park back then), it was in the summer and we always had to make the most of one day, from park opening to park closing. It wasn’t like present day where so many people are fortunate enough to have an Annual Pass and can just visit for a couple hours at a time.

thats-meI only have faint memories of my early Disneyland days. I can recall things like The Matterhorn, Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, and It’s a Small World. I remember eating lunch at Carnation Gardens and I remember watching the Main Street Electrical Parade at night.

main-street-electrical-paradeOur day at Disneyland was like the one day a year I didn’t fight with my younger brother since we were too busy being in awe of all the magic! What I do remember is that it was all about being with our little family and creating memories together.

memories-1As I got older, my love for Disney continued to grow and I’d visit Disneyland with my friends (and no parents. One of my high school dreams was to dance in one of the Disneyland parades. I never had the technical training to make it to the final cuts of Disney auditions, but I will say that it was fun to spend hours and hours on the old backlot of Disneyland where they used to hold the auditions.

twiceLuckily for me, they created a parade for Disney’s 45th anniversary that guests could actually dance in. It was called “The Parade of the Stars” and guests were picked up along Main Street, U.S.A. in the Omnibus and taken backstage to learn their parts.

parade-of-the-stars

We got to dance the entire parade route from It’s a Small World to the top of Main Street, U.S.A.! I danced in it on two different occasions, so it was a dream come true…twice! They even gave each of us a commemorative pin for participating.

pinOnce I became a mom, my love for Disney was something that I quickly passed on to my own daughter. Her first visit to the parks was at Christmas time when she was just 7 months old. I don’t know how much she remembers about that particular visit, but when she was about a year and a half, she and I started visiting the parks together approximately 2-3 days a week together.

tiny-tinker-bell

emily-and-mommyMy daughter and I watched “The Parade of Dreams” so many times during its run at Disneyland! Now, just hearing the music from that parade brings back all of the fun memories we created together when she was really little.

never-end

disney-sideI would say that my love for Disney has come full circle because now I’m here blogging about it too. I could go on typing thousands of words about this topic too, but I think everyone gets the message loud and clear. “When Did It Start For You?” is something we can ALL relate to. It’s fun to hear others’ personal stories.

Do YOU have a particular memory or reason for when it all started for YOU? Share with me in the comments!

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