Many of us watched stunned as we heard Lucy scream, “I don’t want to go to Disney World”, as she suffered through a torturous experience with TSA. If you are not familiar with this incident please see LUCY’S ORDEAL, but be warned it will tear at your heart strings. I know my anger would boil with this mistreatment but to hear my child say they didn’t want to go to Disney World, well, that would bring out my fighting side. In situations like this I am usually careful at pointing fault with the screeners, but the TSA did admit responsibility and heavily apologized. However, there is a line between doing your job and being mean. Yes, this story has a happy ending, Lucy did go to Disney World, and she did get photographed with Mickey. Disney magic comes through once again!
Everyone leading a Disney Driven Life wants to visit their happy place as often as possible. Our very own NDM#268 Natalie H. from TN recently published a book entitled Strategies for Paying for Disney (available for Kindle and in paperback) which will help you do just that. Here’s the official description of the book from Amazon:
With a passion for Disney, what pursuits does Craig Duncan squeeze in between a full time job and family? How about working on ‘They Disney Brit’, the UKs largest and longest running Disney podcast, the ‘Destination Disney’ radio show and the ‘Eye on Orlando’ radio show both of which are aired live on Florida radio shows. Then there is ‘Mousemeets’ which is UKs Disney annual fan convention and ‘Mousemag’ a free bi-monthly magazine all about Disney written by the Disney Community for the Community. “We have also done something different with our associated web sites. We have made DisneyBrit.com one of the best sources for Disney related news anywhere in the world. EyeonOrlando.com is a pure Orlando holiday portal.”
Try to imagine the ideal career, one that keeps you busy doing exactly that you enjoy doing. How does writing about Disney, travel and eating at fine restaurants sound? That’s exactly what Rona Gindin, author of The Little Black Book of Walt Disney World is doing. “I am living my ideal when it comes to my professional goals. I write about restaurants, travel and Disney World, from the comfort of my home. I have amazing clients who care about quality as much as I do. I get to snoop behind the scenes at all kinds of attractions and in all kinds of restaurants. And I get to share my discoveries with like-minded readers. It’s a good gig.”
Doug Ingersoll never visits the Magic Kingdom without spending some time in the Enchanted Tiki Room. There, he feels the presence of his long-departed Aunt Dorothy.
Originally from Indiana, Ingersoll spent much of his youth living and attending school around the world. His father’s work abroad forced Ingersoll to live away from his hometown, his friends and his extended family throughout most of the year. Returning to the Unites States to visit family each summer, he would stop first in Tampa to spend some time with Aunt Dorothy, his “spiritual grandmother.” During each annual visit, Aunt Dorothy would take Ingersoll to Disney World.
To chase their dreams, Shawn & Katie Bonneau have done what a lot of us only dream about. In the summer of 2010 they packed their bags and moved from Maine to within one minute of their favorite place on earth. That bold move to just outside the gates of Pop Century sent their dreams skyrocketing above anything they imagined. “We have already blasted way beyond our dreams” says Shawn, whose podcast with wife Katie is netting some incredible guests.
Waltcast: A Disney Podcast began during the summer of 2009 after Katie appeared on an episode of “All About the Mouse” during a listener interview. Both Shawn and Katie had been frequent listeners of numerous Disney podcasts, but after Katie’s appearance on “All About the Mouse”, they both had been bitten by the podcasting bug and wanted to host their own show. Although a direction had not been determined during the early days of the show, it eventually evolved into a show dedicated to bringing up to date news from around the Disney universe, as well as celebrity interviews (voice-actors, members of the company, authors & actors/actresses).
If you’re standing in line to board Space Mountain are you watching the passengers boarding ahead of you or are you looking behind the glass booth trying to figure out what those employees are doing? If the latter, you will probably identify with Tony Caselnova, owner of Disney By The Numbers. “I took my first trip to Disney when I was 13 and became completely fascinated with how things operated.” This fascination led to Tony taking a job at Epcot in 1995. By working security, Tony got a close up view of how things worked. Now he’s taking those experiences and bringing Disney to us ‘by the numbers’.
One of the most important things to remember while planning a Walt Disney World vacation with little ones, is that you must stay organized! If organization is not a priority to you then it is very easy for chaos to ensue and for everything to fall to pieces. If you are a NDM then being organized should come as second nature to you. You plan out your trip down to when you will use the bathroom. You create detailed packing lists and find great joy in checking off each item as it gets stowed away in your Walt Disney World luggage. Then you arrive at your resort, and unpack everything while your NDH takes the NDKs down to the pool. You put everything in it’s exact spot. Then your Neurotic Disney Family bursts back into the room and in 3 seconds flat everything is laying all over the floor. But have no fear! This does not need to happen! Here is the first half of your Disney Dozen for keeping your hotel room as organized, neat, and tidy as the rest of your trip!
I think the most overwhelming thing so far during all of our relocation preparation has been deciding what is most necessary to take with us. I get caught up with the memories, instead of the use of the item, and for such a large move like this, it has to be more about use than anything. Because we aren’t moving any furniture, the majority of storage will be in clear and colored bins. Here is how we have organized our items, and hopefully this helps those of you looking to do the same.
When I planned my weekend trip to Paris–including Disneyland Paris, I certainly learned a lot. Being in a foreign place and a new atmosphere added a heightened level of anxiety over trip planning. The website I found the most helpful was www.DLRPmagic.com. This website offers a lot of trip planning tips and guides to the rides, the parks, dining, and everything in between. I also found my Unofficial Guide to Disneyland Paris very helpful; it helped me to choose which rides to miss, how to plan my tour, and how to pick and choose where I should eat.
Planning a trip to Walt Disney World can be an overwhelming experience for even the most seasoned travelers, but planning a trip from another country–in my case Canada–can add even more stress to the organization process. In my case, there is even more stress as my DH is known to be a nervous traveler.
My DH is a fan of Disney, but, in spite of all of my attempts to change him, he just doesn’t “get” my obsession with Disney and my constant need to be planning our next trip. I search out airfare prices and discounts on WDW packages, and he firmly states that we need to work on some things around the house and that we can’t afford another trip. I save our pennies along with him, and he firmly states that we need to fix our vehicles and that we can’t afford another trip. You see the pattern. When we finally have the money set aside for a possible trip, and I have found the best possible deal for our family to indulge in a little Disney magic, I can finally get my DH to agree to a family trip to my “Happy Place.” This works out to a Walt Disney World vacation every 2 years.
We all have been there… we pack up as much as we can fit into our luggage, only to get to the room and think “Now what?” Here are some great tips on how to keep your Resort room organized along with your sanity.
Before leaving home, pick up a few things that will help your room stay clutter free. The shoe bags that hang off the back of the doors come in handy and hang over the bathroom door in any Resort room. You can use it for shoes, but also for hair products, make-up, curling irons, socks, underwear, and smaller items like hair clips and such so that it can all be located in one place. Next, head to your local Dollar store and pick up a small flexible container that can be laid flatter inside your luggage. Use this basket to put your change in at the end of the day, your car keys if you drove, and your room key as well.
We all know that traveling to Disney World is a memorable experience; however, there is no better way to ensure that those great memories last forever than taking pictures to capture them. How do you feel about your trip pictures? Do they tell the story of your vacation? Do they show the best moments of the trip? Well, if not, we’re going to change that. This is part one of a series that will give you some great tips you can use on your next trip.
Think about the shots you want BEFORE you leave. We may have good intentions of taking tons of pictures, but then we get busy and distracted. So look over your schedule, and think about where you will be going. For each day, I want you to think of two shots that you definitely want to get. If you keep a printed schedule, make a note of the shots on there as well. If your shots involve your whole group, it’ll help if you tell them beforehand. That way, everyone is ready and expecting it, and there are more people to help remind you of the shot in case you forget. Some possible ideas: your whole group in front of the castle, Epcot ball, Sorcerer’s Hat, and Tree of Life; the whole group with Mickey; each person with their favorite character; or your kids in front of their favorite ride. If you don’t get any other shots the whole trip, you can at least be guaranteed to get a few important ones.
The Disney Driven Life brings you another episode of inner mouse. In this week’s show, Scott, John, Nicole, and JL discuss Disney collectibles and their addictive nature. John discusses a few ways to recoup some of the expense of collecting Disney items. Nicole shares the results of a survey she took among friends about their unique Disney collections. JL reveals why she doesn’t do much collecting, and Scott talks about why he started Collect the Mouse. Join the discussion. Tell us what Disney things you collect, how you organize them, and to what degree they consume your life.
Two weeks ago, you may recall that I mentioned that I rented points for our stay at Saratoga Springs from a DVC owner. The price for the point rental for the room was much less at $700 for the 5 nights versus the cost of over $1800 if we booked through Disney.com with an annual pass discount for the same room type, days, etc! Last week, I detailed the accommodations found in the Studio rooms at Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa. Today, I wanted to give you some insight into my family’s personal review of the DVC rental at Saratoga Springs.
For those of us “poor, unfortunate souls” who live outside the shadow of Cinderella Castle, the wait between visits to Walt Disney World can seem like an eternity. I would guess most non-Florida residents visit the motherland no more than once per year, at most. How, then, does a neurotic Disney family get the absolute most out of its all too infrequent Disney vacation?
A memorable vacation, like a memorable meal, has a structure—it begins with an appetizer that sets up what is to come, transitions to the main course, the day to day details of the vacation itself, then ends with a desert that aids in digesting what has been experienced.
So you haven’t made your Advanced Dining Reservations yet for Christmas Eve or Christmas? Well, don’t fret.. here are some great options for those of you that don’t have your ADRs or are planning to just fly by the seat of your pants and pick a restaurant at whim.
The holidays are rapidly approaching, and I am sure that all of you want to place your requests with the man himself: Santa Claus! So did you know that you can NO LONGER find him in the Disney Resorts?! In past years, you could find him in each of the Resorts for photos, requests, and hugs. After many searches on the Internet for information on this year’s Santa Claus Resort schedule, I turned up NOTHING!
Feeling defeated, I decided to call Disney World’s reservation line. The nice cast member checked and checked her database and also found nothing. Not to be discouraged, she called a supervisor who informed her that Santa was rather tired this year and was not able to visit all of the Resorts.
In my a recent blog contribution, Celebrating At Walt Disney World, I may have mentioned I’ll be celebrating my birthday on property for the first time ever next year.
My wife has been asking me everyday for the last three weeks where I would like to have dinner on my birthday. Each time she asks I have the same response: I don’t know. Well, I think my answer is starting to wear thin on her. She’s afraid we won’t get an ADR at the restaurant I choose because it’s taking me so long to decide. I keep telling her we can always eat at Tony’s Town Square. For those who don’t realize it, I’m being sarcastic, and for the person who likes Tony’s Town Square, I am truly sorry if I offended you!