Wishes

Missing the Magic Series: Wishes

Wishes

Image ©Disney

May 11, 2017 was the last time that Wishes was seen at the Magic Kingdom park at Walt Disney World. Removed so that the Happily Ever After Fireworks show could be presented, the closing of Wishes was hard for many Disney fans to take. In the last week or so, I’ve been hit with the nostalgia bug while walking our dog River, and we’ve been listening to our music for Wishes in the morning. That reminiscing is what led to the idea of writing about the things that we are missing at Walt Disney World. We’re calling this series “Missing the Magic”.

For the longest time, I was not a fan of fireworks of any sort. Wishes, Illuminations, your local 4th of July fireworks, the fireworks at the State Fair in Raleigh, NC, I wasn’t having it for any of them. But then, one day my wife Cindy suggested that Sophie and I get earplugs for when the fireworks were going on, and a love for the fireworks was born.

I have a lot of great memories of Wishes from over the years. Sadly, though, my fireworks picture taking skills are limited, so I have very few good pictures. One of my favorite experiences, though was the day that we saw and heard Wishes while having dinner at Cinderella’s Royal Table!

Are you missing Wishes today? If you are, have a look at the Magic Kingdom 40th Anniversary Wishes, courtesy of YouTube and the fine folks over at WDWMagic!

What are you missing from Walt Disney World? Let me know in the comments below, or reach out to me our social media sites to let me know. Lastly, if all you are missing is being at Walt Disney World, shoot me an email and let’s talk about how we can make that wish come true for you and your family! Email me at mike@pixievacations.com, and thanks for stopping by today!

Memories from Disney at Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving

Akershus with Belle

Last Thanksgiving, our friends Sheila, Randy, and Jagan invited us to celebrate their daughter’s 15th birthday at Walt Disney World. We were so excited, we had never been to Disney over the Christmas Holiday season, and it was something that we were looking forward to very much. This post is much overdue, but regardless, today seemed like a great day to remember that long weekend with some photos that were taken.

On a personal level, this trip was quite difficult for me because I was suffering from some sciatica issues, and as you know if you have been to Disney, walking is probably job number one while you are there — so it became quite difficult to maneuver through the parks.

I didn’t know that I was going to have this issue, or I would have reserved an ECV beforehand. As a result, I had to request one at each of the parks each day, and hope that they had them. Fortunately, I was able to get one at the Magic Kingdom and Epcot, but not at Disney’s Animal Kingdom — for that, I had to use a wheelchair. But enough about that, let’s talk about the trip itself!

On Thanksgiving Day, we made a reservation for Akershus, and everyone except me had the traditional Thanksgiving Dinner. I had what I always have at Akershus — the Tradisjonell Kjøttkake. This incredible dish is comprised of Norwegian Meatballs served with Mashed Potatoes, Seasonal Vegetables, and Lingonberry Sauce, and it is something that I love to get when we eat there!

In addition to eating at Akershus, we also ate at The Boathouse for Jagan’s birthday dinner, and at Kona Cafe for breakfast, and Whispering Canyon Cafe for dinner. Some very yummy food was had that weekend!

Throughout it all, though, what stands out most is the memories, the friendships that continue, the friends that are like family, and the laughter we had. It was far too short, but despite my health challenges, it was still a trip that I will never forget.

Take a look, and thanks for stopping by today!

Swiss Family Treehouse

Magic Kingdom Attraction Guide – Swiss Family Treehouse

Swiss Family Treehouse

Attraction Name: Swiss Family Treehouse
Attraction Type: Walk-Through
Height Requirements: None
Location: Adventureland
Hours of Operation: All Day
FastPass+: N/A

The Swiss Family Treehouse is actually one of my favorite attractions at the Magic Kingdom.  I know, it doesn’t have the glitz or glamour of something like Space Mountain or the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, but the 116 steps take you up six stories, and at the very top, provide very cool views of the entire park!

Unfortunately, this attraction is not accessible to those in a wheelchair or scooter, so that is a shame for those that want to see it but can’t because of physical limitations.  The attraction almost never has any sort of line, so take your time, relax on your journey, and imagine yourself living in such a way.

The attraction features all of the types of rooms you would expect in a house, including:

  • The Living Room
  • The Kitchen and Dining Room
  • The Crow’s Nest
  • Study/Library
  • Jungle Lookout

Finally, here are a couple of photos that show you some of the unique views you can experience on the attraction.  Thanks for stopping by, and happy climbing!

45 Years of the Magic Kingdom!

45 years

October 1, 1971.  45 years ago today. A day that will live in the memories of all #Disney fans everywhere.  It was on this day that the Magic Kingdom, the first park in the so called “Florida Project” that we know of as Walt Disney World, opened to the general public.  On this day, I was a lad of just 3 years old, and had no idea of the significance of this day at the time.  In fact, it wasn’t until eight years later that I would make that first trip to Walt Disney World, when my grandparents took me, my sister, and my Mom in 1979.  Looking back over the many years, I realize that the truly incredible memories I have of this incredible place have helped to shape my life moving forward.  Memories such as the time that Cinderella sent Sophie an enormous chocolate chip cookie just because.  That memory helped fashion the dreams of a wonderfully innocent 6 year old, memories that she remembers to this day.

Other memories of this incredible place include the time that Cindy and I were on the Monorail, the year we ate our way through Disney because Cindy was pregnant with Sophie, and as we passed the Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, we saw Cinderella’s Coach going down the road because a wedding had just taken place. Also high on our list of memories was the time we were in Mickey’s Toontown Fair and went to see one of Sophie’s favorite characters at the time, the one and only Donald Duck.  Sophie was so excited to see him that this happened:

45 years

Sophie was so excited to see Donald Duck she started dancing!

I could write for hours on the subject of what incredible times we’ve had at the Magic Kingdom, but for today, I’ll close with a look back at an event we were fortunate enough to be a part of five years ago — the 40th birthday of the Magic Kingdom.

The beauty of that day was indescribable.  I don’t think I’ve seen as blue a sky as I did that day, and the weather was absolutely incredible.  Around 10 AM, they had a special parade from Town Square in Main Street, USA, down the street, and they had special presentations by Cinderella’s Castle.  Our plan was simple, to ride as many of the original attractions from October 1st, 1971, as we could, and we did that and then some.  The only bits of a hiccup to the day were at lunch time, when we were going to eat at Pinocchio Village Haus, but the line was out the door and around the block, so we went to the Columbia Harbour House and literally walked right in.  The only other part that was bothersome was the absolute insanity of all of the people gathered for the fireworks that night.  It was crazy, and we knew we just had to wait it out, each of us holding on to one another so we wouldn’t be separated.

For this blogger, #45years of the Magic Kingdom has turned into #45000memories and counting.  Let me know what your favorite Magic Kingdom memories are, and thanks for stopping by!  If you are there, let me know what it’s like!

PhilharMagic

My favorite #DisneyMemory from Mickey’s PhilharMagic

PhilharMagic

Mickey’s PhilharMagic is one of those great shows/films that my family loves to enjoy at least once. Located in the Magic Kingdom, Mickey’s PhilharMagic is in Fantasyland.  The attraction is one of our must experiences because of the following key elements:

  • Packed with incredible music.
  • Great moments from classic Disney movies.
  • Special effects.
  • The great talents of Mickey, Goofy, Donald, and Minnie.

Today, I’m not going to talk about the show itself that much. After all, I’ve written about it before and you can read about it here, here, here, and even here. I’m only going to talk about the show to make reference to my favorite #DisneyMemory from this incredible attraction.

The year was 2008, and the day was June 18th.  The day before Sophie turned 7 years old.  We were at the Magic Kingdom that day, and we experienced Mickey’s PhilharMagic, as I know you are aware.  The show was incredible, the music was great, the scenes were great, and Donald Duck was in trouble!

If you’ve seen the show, then you know at the end Donald is shot out of the tuba after Mickey arrives to attempt to put everything back the way it was supposed to be.  You also know that in true Disney style, Donald shoots out of the movie screen and barrels through a wall at the back of the theater.

My favorite #DisneyMemory from this attraction happens after that moment.  As everyone in the theater turned to see Donald sticking out of the wall, trying to free himself, my daughter Sophie yells out loud enough for the entire theater to hear her “Donald, are you all right?”  At that moment, Donald fell, and we all laughed a bit because we could tell he was all right.  I explained to Sophie that Donald was okay, that he trained for these events so that he wouldn’t get hurt, and everything was good.

A child’s imagination is a powerful thing, and on that day in 2008, Sophie showed us her child’s heart, and her empathy towards others.  That is just one of hundreds of examples of her empathy towards others that we have been witness to in her life, and it is the one thing that I treasure her for more than anything.

So now it’s your turn!  What is your favorite #DisneyMemory from Mickey’s PhilharMagic?  Please tell us in the comments below, and thank you for stopping by today!  Go out and make it a great Disney Day!