Who wants to win a Disney Dooney and Bourke Barrel Purse?

My Dreams of Disney

Are you interested in winning this Barrel Purse?

It’s been a few months since we have participated in a contest here at My Dreams of Disney, so we thought that with all of the “Spring” weather we are experiencing all over the country — and yes, I’m being sarcastic here — that we would group together with a bunch of great blogs to offer up this Disney Dooney and Bourke “Charms” Barrel Bag!  This purse looks like it would be seen on the arm of someone walking around town on a great spring day, with temperatures in the 70s and sunny skies!  Wow, I can picture it now!

But to win, you’ve got to enter, which you can do right here in this blog post!  Here are all the specifics of our contest:

  • This contest was put together with the following great Disney blogs and pages:
  • The contest will run from Midnight, March 25, 2013 until 11:59PM, April 1st, 2013 — and no, this is NOT an elaborate April Fools Joke!
  • Winner Selection: The winner of the Sweepstakes will be selected in a random drawing from among all eligible Entries received throughout the Promotion Period. The random drawing will be conducted by 48 hours by Sponsor or its designated representatives, whose decisions are final. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible Entries received. Winner will be notified by email at the email address provided in the Entry Information on or about 48 hours after the random drawing. Potential winner must accept a prize by email as directed by Sponsor within 48 hours of notification. Any winner notification not responded to or returned as undeliverable may result in prize forfeiture. The potential prize winner may be required to sign and return an affidavit of eligibility and release of liability, and a Publicity Release (collectively “the Prize Claim Documents”). No substitution or transfer of a prize is permitted except by Sponsor.

While you are thinking about strolling around Walt Disney World with your Disney Dooney, why not shoot me an email (or fill out the form on my Pixie Vacations Page) and see what kind of deal I can make for you to make that dream a reality?  My services are free, but the level of service you’ll receive from me is second to none!

Good luck, everyone!

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Prayers for the Week, March 24, 2013

mdod-prayers of the week

English: Jesus entering Jerusalem on a donkey

English: Jesus entering Jerusalem on a donkey (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hello everyone, and welcome back to our special Prayers for the Week post.  Today is Palm Sunday, that special day in the Christian calendar when our Savior Jesus triumphantly arrives in Jerusalem, riding on the back of a donkey.

It is amazing how the people of Israel could wave palm branches, shouting Hosanna one day, and then days later, they would be shouting “Crucify Him!”

When I was younger, and not truly in Christ, I still read the Bible, and I could not believe how dumb the Jewish people could be!  The Israelites time and time and time again spurned God, turned their backs on Him, and worshipped whomever or whatever they wanted to.

As I’ve grown up in my Faith, though, and especially since I have been part of The Men’s Study Bible Study, I have learned that WE are, in essence, doing the same things that the Jewish people did so many years ago.  It was humbling when I realized this, because I learned a very important lesson — I turned my back on Him just as often as the Israelites did.

Once I learned that valuable lesson, I began to see that the Scriptures aren’t dated, aren’t written for a people from 2000 years ago, they are just as relevant today as they were then.  My friends, Brothers and Sisters, that is perhaps as valuable a lesson as you will ever learn.

At this time, I invite you to join with us, all across the world, as we pray for those that are hurting, and praise our Father in Heaven for those special things that He has given to us!  As always, you can read and pray over last week’s prayer requests here.

Prayer Requests:

  • We have a prayer request from J Darling, who writes: 

Praise for good health and the ability to work out!
Prayers for My Sailor who is deploying soon, and for strength as I work through my dad’s cancer. He’s opted to go on Hospice. He’s been married to my mom for 41 years (all of my life and my brother’s). We’ll never be ready to let go and say good-bye, but if something should happen while My Sailor is away, it’ll be very challenging if impossible to let him know, and I’ll need him more than ever… So peace and strength to get through this challenging year.
And gratitude for the strength and new skills I’m learning every day.

  • From Facebook, my friend Jessica asks for prayers.

My friend Jessica needs prayers for her husband’s father, who is battling cancer. Please pray for healing for him, but also God’s Peace and Strength to come upon all of the family in the days and weeks ahead! Thanks! 

  • From my friends Karen and Tim, who have this prayer request:

Small request Mike, my husband lost his job back in Sept 2012 due to bankruptcy and he has only had several short part-time jobs without insurance for the family. Prayer for health for our family, we have our kids on medicare but my hubby and I have zero insurance. We have work but the jobs dont offer ins. and we cant afford ins. thru independent carriers…..Thanks

  • My Aunt Ti also has a similar request, here is what she asked prayers for:

I’ve been in that same boat as Tim Pugh Mike, since Jan. of 2009 and I know exactly how they feel. Obamacare hasn’t helped one bit.

  • A last, desperate prayer request for my fellow Park View High School graduate Jeff:

Want to send prayers to Jeff Fowler. This was just posted. This is Natalie. Jeff has taken a turn for the worse. He is in ICU at NIH. Sadly it wont be much longer. Jeff has fought a valient fight. I will update with another post later with additional information.

Please pray for Jeff’s salvation at this late hour — pray that he knows Jesus, and that Jesus also knows him! Also, please pray God’s Peace and Strength upon the family and friends in the days and weeks to come, and also pray for Jeff’s comfort, that he be free from pain, and that he wake up in Jesus’ loving embrace when the time comes. Thank you, everyone!

  • Prayers from my Cousin Ann for a little boy, Joey Angel.  Here is what she said late last night:

Praying for Joey Angel tonight – he’s still in the ICU at Children’s Hospital and progress is slow-going.

Please pray for these and any other prayer requests that you know about!

Praises!

  • We have several praises this week!  First of all, I have a very special praise for my wife’s cousin Tommy.  He had a re-baptism ceremony this past Monday night, and while the tears were flowing, I believe the Lord was beaming at Tommy’s public declaration that he is one of Jesus’ Men! For as it is written in Matthew Chapter 10, verse 32:

Jesus said “Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven.”

  •  A good friend of mine has a praise — after 47 years, he has been reunited with his mother, and they have begun to communicate with one another.  This is a huge praise because she lives hundreds of miles from where he lives!
  • Yesterday was the family reunion of my wife Cindy’s family, and we attended that.  It was a beautiful day, with a lot of love, and even though the family is sad over the condition of Tommy, we made the most of our day and remembered the love we have for one another.
  • From yesterday’s family reunion, more praises!  God is so good, he provides the comfort we all need just when we need it.  It was so refreshing to see so many of Sophie’s cousins yesterday, from Jeremy and Jenna all the way down to Ben’s kids, especially little Katie, who knows how to wrap a Daddy (even if it isn’t her own) right around her finger!  My friends, whenever you are sad, do yourself a favor and take a few minutes to see life through the eyes of a child.  It will be an incredible, uplifting experience for you!
  • Friday and Saturday I was able to spend time with my friend Tabitha, one of the great TA’s with Pixie Vacations!  She was nice enough to include this rookie in an event that she was participating in, and even though we were already friends, we had never met, so it was great to be able to hang with her and learn from her!  Thanks Tabitha!

As always, my friends, if you have a prayer request that we haven’t covered here today, please please please add it to the comments!  I strongly believe that the Lord is looking over all of us in these prayer requests, and your requests are being seen across the Internet, so please add your requests in the comments!

How can an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner help you?

disney-authorized-vacation-planner1

 

When it comes to planning your Walt Disney World, Disney Cruise Line, Disneyland, Adventures by Disney, or Aulani vacation, what can an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner do to help you have the best vacation possible?

When someone asks me that question, I immediately think of six things that will help to answer that question.  Today I’m going to spend a few minutes and let you know how I can help you in your quest for the best Disney vacation possible!

  1. Concierge Level Service — The best thing a Disney vacation planner has to offer is a level of service that is second to none.  I became a Disney vacation planner because I LOVE to plan Disney vacations — for both my family and for yours!  With my concierge level service, I’ll stay on hold to get that great Disney Dining Reservation so that you don’t have to!
  2. There is no fee to you for my service.  Despite the fact that I offer concierge level service to each of my clients, you don’t pay anything extra for that service.  Disney pays me a commission because I’m working to bring business to them — so there are no hidden fees at all.  In fact, you might find that I can save you more money then you can find on your own!  I’ll explain how in the next point.
  3. I am a representative of what I believe is the BEST travel agency in the whole industry — Pixie Vacations!  As a result, Pixie Vacations negotiates deals with Disney that you can’t find with any other agency — some of which can save you hundreds of dollars!
  4. As a Pixie Travel Agent, I am always monitoring the specials to see if they will help you save money on your trip — or add services at ridiculous savings!  For example, if you book a vacation with me today, and tomorrow Disney releases free dining during your stay, I’ll make the necessary changes so you can capitalize on that, with your approval, of course.
  5. My first trip was in 1979, when I was 11 years old.  Since my daughter was born, my wife and I have been taking her to Walt Disney World every year since 2005.  One of the biggest things we love to talk about in our house is Disney, and I am a person that loves planning Disney vacations almost as much as taking Disney vacations!  That passion drives me to help you make the best vacation plans possible for your vacation!
  6. I have travelled to Disney with my grandparents, by myself, with my wife, staying off property, staying on-property, with just the three of us, and all the way up to having a trip with 4 different families, two resorts, and 12 people!  As a result of all of that planning, I have a pretty good idea the type of communication that is needed to make sure that everyone in your vacation party has the vacation of their dreams!

All of that comes down to one thing — I would love to help you plan your Disney vacation!  With my enthusiasm, your travel information, and some Pixie dust, we can create the perfect Disney vacation for you and your family, one that will generate some memories to last a lifetime!

If you would like my help, please fill out the contact information below, or email me at Mike@PixieVacations.com or call me at 919-606-6725!  I promise that your information will never be shared or sold!

Prayers for the Week, March 17, 2013

mdod-prayers of the week

This week has been a trying one for those of us in the faith, my friends.  We have been blessed beyond compare, but in addition to all of those blessings, some of God’s people are truly hurting.  When I am in a situation where someone or something hurts me, my first instinct now is to turn to my favorite passages in the Bible.  The first one is John 16:33, where Jesus tells us:

“I have told you these things, so that in me, you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world.

Another Bible verse that I truly love to read is from the book of Jeremiah, chapter 29, verse 11:

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

It astonishes me, the older I get, how right the Bible is.  When I was younger, I never thought that the Bible had all that much to offer to me.  But now, when I am troubled, I do turn to the Bible, and it literally falls right to where I need to be reading, and there is always something to help me.

My friends, as I said, there are a lot of prayer requests for this week.  As a result, this post will be quite lengthy.  Please make sure you read all of the requests, and pray for all of the ones you see here.  Also, please add your prayer requests in the comments below throughout the week, and we’ll add them onto next week’s post.  As always, here is last week’s list of prayer requests that you can click over and read.

Prayer Requests:

  • Please pray for Rosemary, who is going through some medical issues right now.  Pray that she will have healing, peace from the worries that perhaps are affecting her, and strength in the event that her healing takes time and isn’t accomplished immediately.
  • My wife’s cousin is battling some serious health issues.  Please pray boldly for a miracle, that he may show Glory to God with a miraculous recovery, but in addition, please pray for his comfort, God’s Peace to descend upon him and his family, and God’s Strength to help them all out in the days and weeks to come.  He is being re-baptized soon, but I believe he is already a Christian, so his place with Jesus is assured! Of course, what will happen is all according to God’s Will, and we know that His Will will be done.
  • I have a good friend that is battling fibromalygia.  This unseen disease affects many things within her body, and the pain and debilitation can be quite severe.  She asks that we pray for relief and joy, that she would be able to maintain joy in her life despite her malady.
  • Another friend we have is suffering with a condition that causes her to have severe pain, and forces her to walk with a walker, despite the fact that she is a young person.  Please pray for comfort and healing for her, and strength to continue to battle this degenerative condition.
  • Rebecca asks for our prayers as her Uncle passed away from intestinal cancer on March 12th.  Please lift up his soul to the Lord, but also pray for God’s Peace and Strength to settle upon Rebecca and her family, that they might be able to express their grief together, while knowing that their loved one is with Jesus at this time.  God, please give them the strength to endure the weeks to come as the reality of their loss is felt even more.
  • Becky asked for prayers related to a shooting in central New York state.  The man, at the time, had not been caught, and he had shot 6 people, killing 4 of them, with the other two in critical condition.  After a standoff of several hours, police went in, and with a K9 officer shot in the altercation, the shooter was shot and killed.  It was a sad ending to a tragic mystery — why a person would succumb so much to darkness that they would take innocent people’s lives.  In cases like this, the only happy thing is Satan, who was doing a victory dance.  So now, friends, I ask that you pray for the families that are grieving, as well as for the towns affected, that they would have God’s Peace upon them, and the fear that they were facing would fade away to the distant past.
  • My friend Rebecca asks for prayers for her Poppa, who suffered a heart attack last week.  She has reported that the prayers are working, and he is getting the treatment and help that he needs, but please keep them up for her so that he can fully recover!
  • Carrie asks for prayers for her husband, who is suffering from Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, and is undergoing treatment.  Please pray for him for healing, but also pray for their 7 year old son, that he can adapt to his Daddy being sick, and give his dad what he needs to get over this illness.  Also please pray for Carrie, that she can be strong and help her husband in the ways he needs help, and that she can be strong for the whole family.
  • My good friend has asked me to pray for our country and for those that defend our Constitution and our freedoms. This includes not just our military, of course, but any official of the United States that is in a position to have to defend our rights. My biggest prayer on this matter is that anyone in that position would put politics to the side and step outside of themselves and think about what is best for the country, not for their party or constituants.
  • I would like to lift up my friends in prayer.  I have so many close friends, and the unfortunate circumstance in their lives is that they have not asked Jesus into their life.  They know who they are, and my prayers — for many months now — would be that Jesus would speak to my heart the words that I should say to them that would open up their hearts just a little so that Jesus could work his Will on them.  Please give them the courage to let down those defenses just a little bit, that they would be able to rely on Him instead of trying to rely on just themselves.
  • Lastly, Michelle asks for prayers for her family.  She and her husband are having marital difficulties, and he has filed for divorce.  At stake beyond their marriage is the fact that they have children, and they are all trying to come to terms what it might mean not having their husband/father at home with them.  Michelle does not want a divorce, and has been praying for reconciliation so that their marriage can be saved, but things are very serious right now.  Their divorce hearing is in April.  Please pray for this family, that they can be brought back together, that the divorce does not go through, and that the husband can see what his leaving the family would mean to all of them.

Praises:

  • Noreen had a prayer request that turned into a praise!  She was worried about sounding petty, but she had lost her great-grandmother’s ring.  While she explained that it wasn’t very valuable, it had extreme sentimental value for her, and she was sick over losing it because she wishes to pass it down to her daughter.  She posted on our blog, though, and within 10 minutes she found the ring!  I explained to her that her request was not petty, that it is the memories of our loved ones, which sometimes translate into objects that they used to have, lead us to remember our loved ones all the more.  So, what started as a prayer request turned into a huge praise!
  • I also have a huge praise for Dustin!  His illness was a rare form of cancer, one that chemotherapy normally does not treat very well.  However, in his case, chemo did a great job, and he is in remission from his cancer!  The prayers should continue, though, to make sure he doesn’t have a relapse that would lead to further illness!
  • My final praise is for the Jubilate Worship Dance Conference, which was held March 15th and 16th in Apex, North Carolina.  My daughter was a participant, and they brought glory to Jesus and tears to us with their beautiful, Spirit-filled dancing.  We celebrated Holy Communion as well, and as I told Sophie before she went to bed, Jesus is very proud that she stood up for Him this weekend.  Special praises go out to Miss Jackie and Miss Brook, two Angelic Saints at Edenton Street UMC, who lead the dance teams and show them daily what it is like walking with the Lord.

My friends, while I know that the troubles in our lives are many, I hope you are all able to focus on at least one thing in your life that is a blessing to you, whether it be your children, or your health, or the fact you have a job and a roof over your head, or whatever you come upon.  It is very easy to be caught up in what is wrong with our lives — believe me, I know this, because I have been there — but I firmly believe that if I give my concerns to the Lord, He will take care of them, and allow me to focus on all the beauty that exists in my life.

As always, please add your prayer requests to our comments so that we might pray over them in the coming week!  God Bless You all!

Magical Blogorail Red – Best Disney Photo Spots

Magical Blogorail

Welcome to those of you joining me from Growing Up Disney and those of you just hopping aboard. I am the 4th stop on our Magical Blogorail.

Hello everyone, and thanks for joining us this month on the Magical Blogorail Red line!  This month we are talking about our best (or favorite) Disney Photo Spots!  There are so many locations to take incredible photos at that this one is going to be a tough one to narrow down! So, as a result, I’m going to share with you several of my favorite spots, and highlight them with pictures!

For my first photo spot, I think a trip on a boat makes for some incredible photography.  Perhaps my shot here will convince you of that?  For this boat ride, we had a date with ‘Ohana for breakfast to keep, but even if you don’t, there is no reason why you can’t hop the water taxi to the Polynesian yourself for a little Resort Hopping!

My Dreams of Disney

This shot was taken from the water taxi on our way to the Polynesian Resort for breakfast at ‘Ohana!

Another place I like to take a picture is right by a parade route.  Who doesn’t love a good parade?  The beauty of parades is that there can be hundreds of incredible photo locations — for me, though, I seem to get my best pictures in Town Square.  Perhaps you like these?

My Dreams of Disney

Mickey & Minnie walking around Town Square in the 40th Anniversary Opening Day Parade, October 1, 2011.

My Dreams of Disney

Pete’s Dragon, part of the Main Street Electrical Parade

As you know, though, boats and parades aren’t the only things to photograph at Walt Disney World.  Some of the best shots are simply candid shots, when those being photographed don’t realize that it is happening.  Such was the time when we came upon Princess Jasmine in Morocco of Epcot’s World Showcase.  Sophie had literally five to ten minutes of Princess Jasmine time because she and the Genie had just come out, and no one else was there.  It was truly a magical Disney memory, and the picture just sums it up best.

My Dreams of Disney

Sophie whispering to Princess Jasmine how she was going to buy a Princess Jasmine costume during this trip. That was the only souvenir she wanted!

One great photo spot, that unfortunately isn’t around any more, is the love seat in Minnie’s Country House, in what used to be known as Mickey’s Toontown Fair.  While that land is no more, the memory of Sophie with her Meemaw remains, and I’m sharing it with you now.

My Dreams of Disney

Taken when we took Meemaw to Disney, August 1, 2006 — almost 7 years ago!

Have you ever had your picture taken at a block party?  I’m sure many of you have had that happen over at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  But how many can say they danced the night away with Chip over at Disney’s Animal Kingdom?  Sophie can!

My Dreams of Disney

Dancing at the block party at Disney’s Animal Kingdom during rare evening Extra Magic Hours.

Of course, sometimes the best photo spots are when you are just relaxing in Epcot’s World Showcase, at the tables in front of the American Adventure pavilion.  Hey, who put that picture in here?

My Dreams of Disney

The Goofy Creator, Editor, Author, blah blah blah of My Dreams of Disney

Oh, you know what?  I hear getting your picture taken in front of Cinderella Castle can be kind of neat.  Tell me, what do you think?

My Dreams of Disney

I love you two! Shane, thank you for being Stephanie’s Prince Charming!

I hope, in a roundabout way, that I have answered the question of where the best Disney photo spots are.  The truth of the matter is that wherever your camera is pointed is where the best photo spot is!  These pictures bring a smile to my face, and in some cases, a tear to my eye, as I remember the wonderful memories that these pictures remind me of.  Thank you for indulging me as I took my trip down memory lane!

Thank you for joining me today. Your next stop on the Magical Blogorail Loop is Disney Donna Kay.

Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail should you happen to have to make a stop along the way and want to reboard:

1st Stop ~ Colorado Mountain Mom
2nd Stop ~ A World View
3rd Stop ~ Growing Up Disney
4th Stop ~ My Dreams Of Disney
Final Stop ~ Disney Donna Kay