During this especially warm month, I'm sure I will want to be "under the sea" with Sebastian! How about you?
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My August Calendar Photo!
During this especially warm month, I'm sure I will want to be "under the sea" with Sebastian! How about you?
If you haven't heard, the 2-disc Blue-ray Diamond Edition of Cinderella is coming out on October 2nd! Since Cinderella is one of Disney's most iconic movies of all time, and because we have a "glass slipper" in our name after all, we are really excited; but we're also really excited for the new line of products that the DisneyStore.com has released in preparion for the film:The Cinderella Premiere Collection!
There are lots of new Cinderella themed products for all ages to enjoy; and today, we have picked a few of our personal favorites to share with you.
This is a journal featuring a the original Cinderella poster as its cover! Be sure to notice the glass slipper charm attached to the book mark too. This journal currently costs $14.50 online and we think it would be a great gift for a Cinderella fan to jot down her dreams and wishes!
We are big pin collectors, so naturally we would include this limited edition 5 piece pin set. However, the price is steep at a $129.95 and we don't think it's quite worth that; but hey, it's fun to look!
Our last pick is a Cinderella notecard set featuring the original poster and vintage artwork from the film's original release in 1950. There are twenty cards with 5 different designs and it all comes in a decorative box. This is great gift for all of us grown-up Cinderella fans and it only costs $14.50!
You can check out the entire Cinderella Premiere Collection here and discover great costumes and toys for your own little princesses, as well as few more collectibles.
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort is home to many restaurants; but one of our favorites is The Grand Floridian Cafe!
This table service restaurant, which serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, is only worth one dining plan credit and can be found just off the lobby. The atmosphere is light and airy with a Victorian style decor and a little touch of whimsy; and huge white windows line the wall of the resaurant and face the resort grounds.
Many consider this restaurant a hidden gem in the Disney dining world, as it is often overshadowed by the 1900 Park Fare character meal and the culinary dining experiences of Citricos, Narcoosees, and the esteemed Victoria and Alberts. Therefore, if you're looking for a nice, sit down meal without dealing with reservations, this restaurant may be for you!
We recently visited the Grand Floridian Cafe for dinner and sampled a few dishes, as well as celebrated a special event; and here's our opinion of our meals and experience!
Soon after we were seated, we were served a basket of bread with a plate of salted butter! We especially liked the bread with raisins. It had a multigrain taste with a touch of sweetness! Very unique and a great start to our meal.
This dish, the Pan-Roasted Chicken Breast, was served on a bed of mushroom risotto and chicken pan juice. The chicken was very good; but the mushroom risotto was fantastic! Overall, it was a very good dish and very filling!
This menu item is the New York Strip Streak served with house-mashed potatoes and veggies. The steak was tender and, accompanied with the potatoes and veggies, made for a hearty meal. It's sure to be a favorite with the men in your group.
The Grand Floridian Cafe offers one of our favorite dessert options, a dessert platter! It consists of a sampling of Lemon Cheesecake, a Key Lime Tart, a mini-Boston Creme Pie, and a Berry Tart all surrounding a chocolate Mickey!
The best thing about this dessert is that it's only worth one dining credit on the Disney Dining Plan; and if you're paying out of pocket, it can serve two! This way, two guests can enjoy a variety of desserts for the price of one!
Wanting to celebrate a special event, or just enjoy a special dessert? At the Grand Floridian, you can order the famed chocolate glass slipper dessert!
This dessert costs extra and is not included on the Disney Dining Plan. It consists of a chocolate glass slipper filled with whipped creme and topped with raspberries, along with a small, chocolate mousse, raspberry sauce, and a chocolate picture of the castle! You can also have Disney write a personalized message in chocolate for no extra charge!
Read more about our experience with this dessert and how to order one of your own here!
All in all, the Grand Floridian Cafe offers a pleasant balance between refined and casual dining. While the food here in't the very best of all menus offered at WDW, it is definitely yummy and tends to be more affordable than other Grand Floridian restaurants. The service we experience was excellent; and the atmosphere was also quieter than some other restaurants.
Plus, it's always a special experience to get the chance to dine in the gorgeous Grand Floridian! We know that adults will enjoy it; and some teens (especially girls) may as well, especially if you get the dessert platter! Kids will probably not be as excited as they would at 1900 Park Fare; but, just as with most Disney restaurants, kids are always accomodated with coloring sheets and friendly, laidback servers!
So if the adults in your group want an elegant dining experience without the hassle, go ahead and try the Grand Floridian Cafe! We doubt you will be disappointed.
This week we are recommending:
Magical Blogorail Green discussed how they plan and prepare for a Disney vacation! Hop aboard now at A Disney Mom's Thoughts!
Cool idea! Magical Blogorail asked readers to caption their Disney photos! Hop aboard now at The Disney FAITHful!
First Look at Magic Kingdom Map Including New Fantasyland and Cast Member Costumes, need we say more?
See how Beauty and the Beast's symbolic rose is being used in the new Be Our Guest Restaurant in Sneak Peek: The Enchanted Rose Takes Center Stage at Be Our Guest Restaurant!
The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights Dates Announced, are you planning a Christmas Disney Vacation?
So funny and so true! Disney Quick Tips – How to interact with a Disney Addict!
Awesome outfits! They're so cute! Fashion Inspiration: Melody from Disney’s The Little Mermaid II
our guide and tour group
During our last trip to WDW, we decided to take the plunge and experience our first Disney tour, the Disney's Keys to the Kingdom Tour at the Magic Kingdom!
Disney's Keys to the Kingdom Tour is offered at several times throughout the morning at the Magic Kingdom; and it is suggested that you make a reservation early as it does fill up quickly. You can also make a reservation at your Disney resort concierge desk; but keep in mind all guests participating in the tour must be 16 years or older.
This tour typically lasts about four to five hours; and lunch is included. However, you have to have a ticket to get into the park in order to experience the tour.
When we decided to take the tour, we would learn some Magic Kingdom history, as well as get to see some backstage areas of the park, including the famed Utilidors! (seeing the Utilidors is a huge draw)
Our adventure began at 8:00 in the morning in front of City Hall at the Magic Kingdom. The park doesn't open until 9:00, but we got in through a special entrance at the gate for guests who are taking tours or have early breakfast reservations.
Once we checked in, we were given name tags featuring the Keys to the Kingdom logo. (It made a great souvenir) We then received menus for Liberty Square's Columbia Harbor House and placed our order then and there for lunch.
Next we were given a small bag which hung around our necks which included an earpiece connected to what looked like a small radio. Once our guide joined us, he showed us how to work it. He also explained that the earpiece would enable us to hear him clearly when we walked through crowds and places with loud music. It is really a great thing to have as we never missed a thing he said, even if we were bringing up the rear of the group.
the earpiece used on the tour
Our tour began on Main Street U.S.A. with our guide telling us about himself and his experiences at Disney, as well as explaining that Disney has several keys to its success. He would be showing us those keys at work.
Now this tour was literally packed full of information about the park, its history, secrets, and Walt Disney himself; and because it is a paid tour, we don't want to give away too much. Plus, we wan't you to experience it for yourself, don't let us ruin the surprise!
But we can tell you that our tour group learned a lot about the secrets and history behind Main Street U.S.A. before we headed over to Adeventureland to learn what history and magic this land held! Hint: we also got to experience an attraction here in a whole new way and learned A LOT about it!
On our way to Frontierland, we got to venture behind the scenes to see where the parade floats are held and where the parade performers go once they finish performing. Let us tell you that seeing the Magic Kingdom behind the secens is nothing like it does while you're in the park! We also learned something very interesting in that, when you're behind the scenes, Pirates of the Caribbean and Splash Mountain are neighbors! Weird, right? But true!
That backstage experience was one of the highlights of our tour; but it didn't end there. We then went to Liberty Square which is a treasure trove of history and secrets! We also got to experience another attraction and skipped most of the wait!
After lunch at Columbia Harbor House, which was served in a room exclusive to our tour group, we headed back to Main Street U.S.A. and soon were led down to the Utilidors!
We learned about this ode to Walt's grandfather
Our guide explained that many people think that the Utilidors are underground caves like out of an Indiana Jones film, or as magical as the Cave of Wonders from Aladdin. Sadly, this is not true as the Utilidors are used to transport Cast Members and help keep the Magic Kingdom working; but the Disney touch is here as well.
There are photos of Walt and Roy, as well as a display featuring former Disney pins, and we only got to see a section of the Utilidors! It was also really cool to see how Disney keeps the magic going in areas we can't see, and where Cast Members go when they're not "on stage."
Sadly, cameras are not allowed down here, so keep that in that mind during your tour; but we think it's an easy rule to follow. It keeps this part of the park mysterious and intriguing!
Now we have to talk about our tour guide, Robert. He is a Florida native and has had a passion for Disney since he was a child. Robert's knowledge of the Disney Company, the Magic Kingdom, and Walt himself was very impressive; and his passion for his knowledge was evident. In fact, our tour was nearly moved to tears as he talked about Walt and his brother Roy. We definitely left with a greater appreciation for not only the park and our new knowledge, but the Disney family as well.
Now for those of you considering the Backstage Magic Tour, the biggest tour of them which lets you visit all four parks, we would recommend trying The Keys to the Kingdom tour first to see if you would like a tour experience. You are given several bathroom breaks; but the tour keeps a steady pace and four to five hours can be a long time for some, especially if you're on a tight schedule.
Secondly, our guide explained that because the Backstage Magic takes you to all four parks, which is cool, the information given is more of an overview. Meanwhile, the Keys to the Kingdom tour really provides a more in-depth look; and what a better place to get a quality education about Disney than at Walt's park, the Magic Kingdom? It's really the foundation, and the model, for everything else. Plus, for those of you are on a budget, keep in mind that it's cheaper!
So we highly encourage you to book a Keys to the Kingdom Tour during your next vacation, especially if you are seeking to expand your Disney knowledge or just want to see the parks in a whole new way! Plus, you will get a special little souvenir at the end of your tour to commemorate your experience!
Check out other Destination Disney posts over at Heidi's Head!
Pink or Blue? Because today's color theme is pink, we choose pink! Does anyone know what Disney film this book, and color debate, is from? Let's see how many of you know!
If any of you ladies have been to Walt Disney World lately, or checked out DisneyStore.com, you have probably seen the vintage Disney tees and accesories around the parks and at Downtown Disney.
Fortunately, popular retailers are picking up on this fashionable Disney trend! So now, us Disney fans can add a little Disney fashion to our wardrobes while away from the parks; and for a much affordable price too!
Target has released their Disney Artist Collection which is in stores and online now! This collection is available for adults and kids and features vintage Disney characters and films, including Walt's first creation, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit!
This women's shirt is a pink and gray baseball tee which only cost about $15! We like how the graphic really resembled a sketch and it was really soft too!
This razorback Bambi tank is very fashionable and sweet! There was also a green tank featuring the Big Bad Wolf from Disney's famous Three Little Pigs.
This gray and white baseball tee features a Peter Pan graphic. The font really gives it that vintage, original look.
In addition to these tops, there was also shorts, sweatshirts, and even sleepwear to choose from! Be sure to put a little Disney in your day by checking out this Disney wear at your local Target; and hopefully, we will see even more of this in the future!
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"C" is for The Chapeau shop at the Magic Kingdom! The hat box is inspired by an opening scene in Lady and the Tramp. Do you remember? This is why this sign is located close to Tony's, a Lady and the Tramp themed restaurant!
Looking for a way to save some cash on your Disney dining? No, I'm not talking about the Disney Dining Plan, I'm talking about a way to get some popular, and delicious, Disney dishes for a cheap price!
You may be surprised to learn that some popular dishes served at table service restaurants at WDW can be found at a few quick service spots for a cheaper price! This is great for guests on a budget who want to indulge in some of Disney's finest foods, as well as for guests who are on the Quick Service Dining Plan.
Creme Brulee-Many restaurants include Creme Brulee's on their dessert menus; and many of them put their own spin on this creamy, custard dessert; but if you want to enjoy it in its classic form, stop by Sunshine Seasons to enjoy theirs! A vanilla Creme Brulee is served at Les Chefs de France for around $8; but you can enjoy Sunshine Season's for around $4!
Tonga Toast-This breakfast item is one of Disney's most popular dishes. What is it? It's sourdough bread covered in brown sugar and stuffed with bananas! It is served at the Polynesian's Kona Cafe for around $13; but you can enjoy it for about $5 or $6 downstairs at Captain Cook's Snack Company. However, do keep in mind that Kona Cafe's version comes with a few sides when Captain Cook's does not.
Clam Chowder-Liberty Tree Tavern at the Magic Kingdom serves up a bowl of Clam Chowder for $7; but just down the street at Columbia Harbour House, guests can enjoy Clam Chowder for about $5! Columbia Harbour House doesn't skimp on the clams either, we know this from experience!
Zebra Domes-The most popular dessert at Animal Kingdom Lodge is Zebra Domes, a unique, creamy, delicious dessert that we highly recommend. You can enjoy Zebra Domes at Boma, which is a buffet, for about $35 to $40 per person. But if you venture to The Mara, this resort's counter service spot, you can feast on a five pack of Zebra Domes for about $4!
Fish and Chips-At the United Kingdom pavilion at Epcot, the Rose and Crown serves up the traditional English meal of Fish and Chips for just under $20. But next to this restaurant, at the Yorkshire County Fish and Chips, you can enjoy two hearty strips of fish and a serving for chips for around $9.
Rice Cream-Rice Cream is a sweet, rice pudding found at the Norway pavilion in Epcot. At Akershus Storybook Dining at this pavilion, a helping of rice cream is offered on the dessert platter guests are given. It costs about $38 for an adult to enjoy a meal at Akershus; but across the pavilion at Kringla Bakeri og Cafe, you can have this dessert for $3!
Cheese Plate-Cheese plates can be found on several menus at WDW restaurants; but there is a cheese plate offered at Boulangerie Patisserie at the France pavilion in Epcot for about $6.
Ham and Cheese Quiche-Also at Boulangerie Patisserie, guests can have a Ham and Cheese quiche for about $4. Meanwhile, at Les Chefs de France, a Ham and Cheese Quiche costs $15.
Dole Whip-This chilly, pineapple flavored, soft-serve treat is, next to a Mickey Premium Bar, the most famous dessert at WDW. You can relish this treat at the Magic Kingdom for $4. Meanwhile, the Polynesian's Captain Cook's Snack Company is famous for their Dole Whip soft serve machine; and if you are on the Disney Dining Plan, you can use a Dole Whip as your free dessert that comes with your meal, without having to use a snack credit!
So if you are paying out of pocket, using the Quick Service Dining Plan, or want to make the most of your standard Disney Dining Plan, consider sho
Every season at the Walt Disney World Resort offers a different experience; and during the summer, Disney World is in full swing and buzzing with summertime activity.
Many guests, including ourselves, tend to shy away from summer vacations to WDW due to the crowds; but you have to admit that a traditional summer vacation to Disney has some extra magic of its own.
So, in today's blog, we are listing some of the best summertime acitivites during a summer vacation to Walt Disney World! Enjoy!
1. Spend a whole afternoon at your Disney Resort pool.
2. Enjoy a Dole Whip!
3. Get soaked on Splash Mountain!
4. Spend the cool, evening hours at the parks after swimming all day
5. Rent a boat at a Disney Resort Marina
6. Have a hot dog and Coke from Casey's Corner
7. Beat the heat by shopping at Downtown Disney
8. Stay out of the sun with a few hours of resort hopping
9. Take a chilling, icy plunge on Blizzard Beach's Summit Plummet
10. Take a nap in a hammock on the beach
11. Sample Disney World's chilly, sweet treats, such as a: Mickey Premium Bar, Ice Cream Cone, Kaki Gori, Frozen Banana, or an Ice Cream Sandwich
12. Spend some time at one of Epcot's pavilions, such as the Living Seas, The Land, or take a tour of the Vision House at Innoventions
13. Spend a few hours at Typhoon Lagoon's awesome wave pool!
14. Watch a movie under the clear summer night sky at your resort.
15. Stroll the Boardwalk in the evening!
16. Sleep in!
What do you like to do at WDW during the summer? Share with us!