Disney Winning from ChicagoParent.com

Imagine my surprise when, on February 15th, I received notification from @MariaPilarClark that I had won a contest I entered on the Cosmotot blog at ChicagoParent.com!  What a happy email that was!  The contest was simple to enter, and I did so not even dreaming that I would win, but I did!  And the best part about the winning?  The prize pack was really cool!  Take a look at the prizes that were sent to me from the Disney Store!

A match set of Valentine’s Mugs! Perfect for Hot Chocolate!
Look at the handle!

Minnie’s Cup has a big heart also!

In addition to the Valentine’s mugs, we also got a really cool set of Mickey and Minnie Plush dolls!  Take a look at these!

Mickey holding Minnie’s Heart
And Minnie holding Mickey’s Heart!

What the plush doesn’t show is that the heart opens up, and a “To/From” Valentine Card is inserted inside!  In addition to these shots, take a look at some of the details on the Minnie Plush!

Look at Minnie’s Hat

The plush dolls are called “Pie-Eyed” because of the way the eyes are.

Minnie’s Overall Look!
To top it off, a Disney Valentine’s Day Reusable Tote Bag!

It was really cool to win this prize package!  I’ll tell you, we were all very excited in the Mickey household!  My daughter Sophie wanted to claim all of it as her’s, but I put the kibosh on the mugs! She is happy, though, she’s got two new Mickey and Minnie plush toys to play with!  It was a really great prize pack, full of a lot of really fun items!  At this point, I wish to thank some folks for their nice generosity:

  1. Maria Pilar Clark — for announcing the contest on her Cosmotot blog and hosting it with ChicagoParent.com!
  2. ChicagoParent.com — I have liked your Facebook page, and I am getting some great parenting tips now (in addition to winning the contest! A double bonus!)
  3. The Disney Store and the @DisneyStorePrez — Thanks for giving away such great items for contests all across the Internet!

Thanks everyone for reading!  Have a Magical Day!

The 100th post on My Dreams of Disney

I was looking at the blog last night and realized that my post today – titled “Walt Disney World: Planning the Perfect Day” was the 99th post I have created since MDOD started on September 8, 2010. As a thank you to all of my readers, I thought that I would take some time today to highlight some of my all time favorite posts. I hope you enjoy! If you have a post that you liked and it isn’t mentioned here, just let me know!

My progression through MDOD begins with my second post.  The first post was an introduction to the blog, which at the time was known as Dreams of Disney.  However, the second post, My First Trip, was about our very first trip to the place “Where Dreams Come True”.  Even now, re-reading that post brings back all of the memories that I wanted to remember in later years — the real reason why My Dreams of Disney was created.

The next stop on my favorite posts takes us to when we were Eating Our Way Through Disney.  I like this post because it brings me back to that precious time when we were preparing for Sophie coming into our lives, and that special trip we took to get away from it all, and just enjoy being ourselves for a while.  That was the kind of trip where we definitely took the leisurely stroll approach to Disney!

One special post that I have was when we took Meemaw to Disney World.  That was a one day trip with Sophie in 2006, so we are going on five years ago, and my Mom hadn’t been to Disney since that first trip, 28 years earlier.  I particularly like that post because I included some pictures from that trip, and one of my favorites is the one of Sophie and her Meemaw sitting on the love seat in Minnie’s Country Home.

The Disney Hiatus happened when Sophie was born.  She was an itty-bitty little thing, but eventually she was big enough to take on a trip to see the Mouse!  Who better to go with then her best friend Riley?

One of the reasons we love to go to Disney is because of the service that Disney provides to their guests.  I love the approach that they take with their guests, so I made a point of noting in a post the things that makes Disney, Disney!

Around this point I started my exploration of the Lands of the Magic Kingdom.  This was an important project for me because I wanted to explore all of the lands, particularly with closing of Mickey’s Toontown Fair.

In November, the traffic on My Dreams of Disney really started to ramp up.  However, before all of that started, my excitement level started growing because it was almost time to make the reservations for our next great Disney trip!

On Veteran’s Day, I wrote a special post thanking all of our Veterans for all that they have done for us.  If you haven’t seen it, please check it out.

Right around Thanksgiving I became a writer for Chip’s blog Chip & Company!  At this point, my site started really taking off as far as traffic goes, and I also wrote a post about Thanksgiving that included some of my favorite pictures!

In mid December I started my review of the countries of the World Showcase over at Epcot.  It took a while, into January, to get them all completed, but I have had many favorable comments about them, so take a look if you missed them the first time around!

On January 15th, my special post was about reclaiming my nickname!  It took a long time to be okay with the name, so feel free to call me Mickey!

On January 30th, I began my first Disney contest, thanks to my friends at Pixie Vacations!  After three weeks of people liking the My Dreams of Disney Facebook page, my winner was announce: Kristy Murphy!

The last bit of information for me was my inclusion into the Magical Blogorail red loop!  It is an awesome honor to be included in that, so to my Disney friend Beth, I say a heartfelt thank you!  Since the red loop is a brand new loop, our first post was about why we started our blogs.  If you haven’t seen all the posts, please check out the Magical Blogorail site and read them all!

I know that I have written probably a few thousand words more than you wanted to read, but if you have made it all the bottom of this post, I really appreciate it!  In addition to remembering all of our trips, knowing that you all are reading my posts really makes it worthwhile.  So to all of you, Thanks for this and all of my other posts!  Let’s have fun with the next 100 posts also!

Walt Disney World: Planning the Perfect Day

When it comes to the Walt Disney World resort, there are so many things that you can do that almost any day can be considered the perfect day!  But for the purposes of this exercise, I’m going to take you through one possible scenario of what the perfect day for me is at Walt Disney World.
Disclaimer: The perfect day is totally open for re-interpretation, and can be changed to another perfect day at any time that I (or more specifically, my wife) deems necessary without warning.
The possibilities are endless, to be honest.  For some of us, the perfect day would involve getting right on every ride at all of the parks.  For others, maybe having the best dining Advanced Dining Reservations all day.  For me, it does depend on what I want to do on a particular day, but the first thing that must happen is that my perfect day has to include my wife and daughter as part of it.
I have been to Disney World by myself once, but in all honesty, one of the biggest reasons I go to Disney is to enjoy a great vacation with my family.  That single fact makes any day the perfect day.
Now that I have decided that my perfect day will include at least my wife and daughter, it is now time to get down to the nitty-gritty on the details.  Right now, I’m in a mellow mood, and my perfect day doesn’t really have to include hitting all of the top attractions, although I do think we will certainly hit some of them. 
For me, the perfect day has perfect weather.  How’s this sound: a light southerly breeze, warm sunlight, temperature about 75.  Not a cloud in the sky, either!
In addition to perfect weather, the parks are also perfect from the standpoint that the crowds are light.  For all of the rides I want to ride, such as Big Thunder Mountain, Space Mountain, Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, and Peter Pan’s Flight, the wait times are all 10 minutes or less.
When we arrived at the Magic Kingdom, we saw a huge sign that indicated that Mickey and Minnie’s houses had been relocated to Liberty Square!  Better yet, they had been redecorated to reflect the theming and time period of Liberty Square.  That would be cool.
After taking in all of the sights and sounds of Magic Kingdom, the next step in my perfect day would be a trip to Epcot via Monorail.  To our surprise, we were asked if we want to ride up front of the monorail, so of course we say yes!  Riding in the front of the monorail has been prohibited since the tragic monorail accident in 2009.
As we get to Epcot, the first thing we did was Spaceship Earth a couple of times in a row.  As you remember, Spaceship Earth was my MUST ride at Epcot.  After that, we made a leisurely stroll up to Mexico Pavilion for a ride on the Three Caballero’s.  Then, after that, we head up to Akershus for a great meal with all of our favorite Princesses!  After we eat, we do ride our rides at Epcot again, but since it is getting later in the afternoon, and Magic Kingdom has extra magic hours, we decide to head back there to enjoy some more rides!
To cap off our perfect day, who do you think was waiting for us when we got off the monorail at the Magic Kingdom?  None other than Mickey & Minnie themselves!  They were there to spend the rest of the evening with us, and specifically Sophie, riding all of the rides with her!  It was a great evening, and a great day – in fact, the perfect day!

Mickey is a Disney Fan, and loves planning trips to Disney World for his family and friends!  When he isn’t posting on his own blog, you can also follow him over at Chip & Company, as well along the Magical Blogorail Red loop.  As always, you can follow Mickey over at the My Dreams of Disney Facebook page or via Twitter.