Nine Weeks

Nine Weeks Until Disney – Nine Things to Experience

Nine Weeks

Image ©WDW Shutterbug

Hello everyone!  Today marks nine weeks until my family experiences Walt Disney World again!  Starting with today’s post, we’re going to feature each week a post counting down the number of weeks until our trip, and highlighting a number of things we want to experience when we are there.  So, since today we are nine weeks until our arrival, we are going to feature nine things we want to experience.

Nine Weeks Until Disney: Nine Things to Experience

Main Street, U.S.A.

Nine Weeks

Image ©WDW Shutterbug

One of the things I’m most excited about is all of the Christmas decorations, especially those to be found on Main Street, U.S.A. For me, all I’ve got is pictures taken by a friend of mine some years back, no real first hand experience, so I’m very excited to get in the thick of it all and witness these things up close.

The Resorts Decorated

Nine Weeks

Image ©WDW Shutterbug

All I’ve read has told me that the resorts have their own unique way of decorating for Christmas, and that each of them is special and should be seen if possible.  What’s exciting for me is that we’re going to spend some time at Wilderness Lodge, Grand Floridian, and Polynesian during our trip, and we’ll be able to see for ourselves all of these incredible scenes.

New Restaurants

During our trip, we are going to be eating at several restaurants that we’ve never eaten at before!  We’re going to enjoying Whispering Canyon Cafe, The Boathouse, and Kona Cafe as part of our dining, and I can’t wait to try them all out.  Can I have ketchup please?

Old Attractions setup for Christmas

Nine Weeks

Image ©WDW Shutterbug

“Jingle Cruise” transforms itself for Christmas, and other attractions, such as Carousel of Progress, feature Christmas decorations in different scenes as part of the show. I think those will have more meaning for me when seeing them at Christmas, and I can’t wait to experience that!

Photographing Decorations

One thing that I absolutely want to do is to take stunning photos of the decorations throughout the Walt Disney World resort.  I like to take photos, and I think I will like it even more when I’m able to capture these incredible decorations all over.

Animal Kingdom Changes

This will be the first time I’ve been to Walt Disney World since the world of Avatar opened up.  I can’t wait to see it for myself, and I’m looking forward to trying the attractions out as well!

Candlelight Processional

Nine Weeks

Image ©Denny

The Candlelight Processional is the story of Christmas told in the American Adventure Pavilion in the World Showcase of Epcot.  Narrated by a well known celebrity, the Candlelight Processional is at the top of my list to see and experience. When we are there the narrator has not been announced yet, but I look forward to hearing it — whomever it may be!

Celebrating Birthdays!

It’s Jagan’s birthday, and we’re celebrating with her! That, plus seeing her parents, is going to be a lot of fun and something I’ve been looking forward to for a long time.  I can’t wait!

Getting a well-deserved vacation!

That kind of speaks for itself, doesn’t it?

Thank you for joining me today on our look at nine things we want to experience.  Next week we will continue this theme by looking at eight more things we want to see and do, and before you know it, we’ll be counted down to our trip!

Disney Bucket List: Celebrating Christmas at WDW!

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Orange Loop. Today we are sharing our Disney Bucket Lists and what you should add to yours.


celebrating Christmas

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

When it comes to bucket lists, especially Disney bucket lists, it seems like everyone has at least one.  For me, I probably have a 100 or so bucket lists, each one different from the last.  However, at the top of my bucket list — my ultimate Disney bucket list — is celebrating Christmas at Walt Disney World!

When you start talking about things to do at Walt Disney World for Christmas, there are five main things that I want to tackle when I’m able to go with my family.  This list is in no particular order of importance to me, I want to experience all of these.

Magic Kingdom

First and foremost, I want to experience the splendor that is Main Street, U.S.A. in it’s Christmas finest.  Seeing the exquisite building lit up and decorated, catching the magical feeling that you have on Main Street, and hearing the songs from the performers, I can only imagine what it is like.  Additionally, I want to experience the different changes that the Cast Members employ on the various attractions.  An example of this is the Jingle Cruise.

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Another thing that I want to experience when I’m celebrating Christmas is Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.  This party is something that I absolutely want to do one time.  From what I understand, most people feel like experiencing it once is all you need, because this separate ticket experience is kind of pricey.  But for someone who’s never been there before, I definitely feel like it is something we need to experience.

Epcot’s Candlelight Processional

celebrating Christmas

Image ©Disney

Every year at the Epcot theme park, Walt Disney World unveils the incredible Candlelight Processional.  Located at the amphitheater outside of the American Adventure Pavilion, the Candlelight Processional is a special event that involves a guest narrator and special musical performers to tell the story of Jesus’ birth.  For this reason alone, I absolutely have it in my list of things I need to experience at Walt Disney World.

Holidays around the World

Coupled with the Candlelight Processional is the Holidays around the World exhibits at each of the Pavilions.  These special festivals tell the holiday traditions that you can encounter at each country.  Unique and charming, I believe that hearing these different variations on Christmas will leave a lasting impression with me, and would you also.

Resort Hopping

celebrating Christmas

Wilderness Lodge images courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

One of the last things I want to experience at Christmas is an in-depth look at how the different resorts get setup for Christmas.  Pictured above, the Wilderness Lodge Christmas Tree is a striking example that I really want to see in person.  Additionally, taking a look at the Gingerbread House at the Grand Floridian and the Carousel at the Beach and Yacht Clubs really catches my attention.

The little things at Walt Disney World are what make it the premier vacation destination in the World in my opinion.  Tell me, how did I do on my list?  What have I left off that should be included?  Please let me know in the comments, and thanks for following along on one of our dreams!

For more Disney bucket list ideas,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Orange | Disney Bucket Lists Loop:

Magical Blogorail – Dreaming of a Disney Christmas

MB-Green-Logo

Welcome to the first stop aboard Magical Blogorail Green. Enjoy the ride as we discuss Dreaming of a Disney Christmas.

Walt Disney World at Christmas

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

For so many people, Walt Disney World at Christmas is the perfect time to visit.  Since I’ve not been fortunate yet to be able to visit during the Christmas season, I’m dreaming of a Disney Christmas — and perhaps adding a few touches here at home to allow my family to have a bit of a Disney Christmas without leaving home!

My friend Andy is the creator of the Facebook Page WDW Shutterbug, and it is thanks to his wonderful talent and generosity that I’m able to share with you many of the sites that I could picture in my minds eye, even before he sent me these photos.  At the top is one of my favorite pictures of all time, featuring Cinderella Castle nestled at the end of a lit up Main Street, U.S.A.  For this post, I’m going to share with you some of the wonderful scenes you will be able to enjoy when you visit Walt Disney World during the Christmas season!

Magic Kingdom

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

Cinderella Castle is all decked out in twinkling lights. This year, they have added a Frozen motif to it, and it looks incredible.  The picture above is from last year, but is still just as incredible to me.

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

One of my favorite ways to take photos at Walt Disney World is by including the reflection in the water in the shot, as my friend Andy did here.  Stunning, that’s all I can say about this shot…

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

As you can see, it’s not all Christmas lights at the Magic Kingdom.  Here, a Toy Soldier is proudly on display among all the great Christmas decorations on Main Street, U.S.A.

Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

The Christmas Magic isn’t limited to just the Magic Kingdom, though.  Here, you see part of the scenery for The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights!  What an incredible display of scenes to capture the imagination with!

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

Image courtesy and ©WDW Shutterbug

The picture of the Nativity Scene is, to me, what Christmas is all about, and I really like this picture.

Epcot

Image courtesy and ©Denny

Image courtesy and ©Denny

In many ways, though, I think the true Spirit of Christmas is on display over at Epcot with the Candlelight Processional that is performed throughout the Christmas season.  Each night, a celebrity guest tells the Christmas story with the help of musicians.  I think that this will be my favorite part of Christmas at Disney when we are able to experience it for ourselves.  Special thanks goes out to my friend Denny for sharing this picture with me.

Back at Home

Of course, a Disney Christmas doesn’t have to be spent at Disney — although, that’s the way I want to do it one year.  For us, since that isn’t in the cards this year, we have decided to add a little Disney right here at home.  My neighborhood is big on Christmas lights and decorations, so we have added two significant Disney characters to our “blow-up” collection.  Here are pictures of them for you to enjoy!

Minnie adorns our front yard this Christmas!

Minnie adorns our front yard this Christmas!

Olaf is one of the ways we celebrate a Disney Christmas -- at home!

Olaf is one of the ways we celebrate a Disney Christmas — at home!

His name is Olaf, and he likes Warm Hugs!  It’s not like being at Walt Disney World, but my neighbor Harry told me that Olaf is the talk of the neighborhood!  What is your favorite way to celebrate a Disney Christmas?

Thank you for joining me today. Your next stop on the Magical Blogorail Loop is Heidi’s Head.

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 ~ My Dream’s of Disney – Dreaming of a Disney Christmas
2nd Stop ~ Heidi’s Head – Dreaming of a Disneyland Christmas
3rd Stop ~ Mommy To All Girls – Dreaming of a DCL Christmas
4th Stop ~ Frugal Mouse – Dreaming of a Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party
Final Stop ~ Superheroes and Teacups – My Dream Christmas Trip to the Walt Disney World Parks

Merry Christmas – Jesus is Born

Image ©fellowshipoftheminds.com

Image ©fellowshipoftheminds.com

Good morning, my friends, and Merry Christmas to you all!  Today is Christmas Day, one of the most important days in the Christian Calendar, and I hope you all are waking up to a beautiful day, full of love, hope, peace, goodwill, and joy.  While I hope that you all have had a visit from Santa today, I also hope that you all remember that today is the birthday of my Lord, Jesus, and that you keep Him in mind on this day.  If He wasn’t born, none of this would be happening today.

For my non-Christian readers, I hope you have had a wonderful holiday season, and that you have a wonderful day, whether you celebrate Christmas or not.

As we begin to close out the 2013 calendar year, I want to take the time this day to thank all of you — our readers — for stopping by and visiting as often as you do.  It is an honor to me that you take time out of your day — and your Disney planning — to visit with us, and I am humbled that you do so, particularly when there are so many incredible Disney fan sites out there!  Thank you very much, it truly warms my heart that you visit with us.

Once again, my friends, Merry Christmas, from all of us here at My Dreams of Disney, to all of you.  May you experience the true joy that the season brings, and if there is anything at all that I can do for you, please do not hesitate to comment here, or on my Facebook Page, or even send me an email to mickey@mydreamsofdisney.com.  God Bless Us, everyone!

Pleading for a return to Thanksgiving…

Retail Greed

These are just some of the retailers that are open on Thanksgiving…

Belk. Macy’s. Kohl’s. Best Buy. Kmart. Sears. Target. Walmart. Toys ‘R’ Us.  These are just a handful of stores that have announced that they will be opening on Thanksgiving Day.

What has happened to our society?  Where has our sense of family gone?  Why have we become a society that cares only about ourselves, and never stands up and says enough is enough?

For years, Black Friday was the traditional start of the Christmas Season — the one day in the year when retailers around the country would open up early, stay open late, and provide incentives in the form of sales for top notch stuff to entice consumers — like you and I — to wake up early to be part of the game.  Black Friday was also the supposed day of the year when retailers would actually turn a profit for the year — when their months and months of low sales and high overhead would be reversed on one day of shopping.  Hence the term Black Friday.

Somehow, though, all that has changed.  Gone are the days, it seems, when Thanksgiving was about spending time with your family — when you would sit home, enjoy a great meal, talk around the table about the blessings that you have, and generally, love your family and spend time with them.

Now, we are so impatient, so quick to want to move on to the next thing — whatever it may be — that we are bound and determined that we will allow ourselves to be taken away from our families by the promise of a great sale for some piece of rubbish that we don’t even need.

I wish that we were transformed back to a simpler day and age, a time when stores weren’t open on major holidays — in fact, they weren’t even open on Sunday.  A day when we ate a meal together every day of the week, not just on Thanksgiving — and we counted the fact that we had food on the table as one of our many blessings.  I miss those days.  It wasn’t that long ago when our society would rise up and be a force — when the shopping public would announce loud and clear to the retail chains of this country that we were not going to be shopping at your stores on Thanksgiving, so don’t ruin the day for your employees by opening.  In fact, don’t even think about it.

Now, we don’t care that we are taking away from someone elses Thanksgiving time from their family — all we care about is getting out there at 4PM to get a ticket to get in at 6PM, or getting to the mall at 7PM so that we can get a lousy $5 gift card when the store opens at 8PM.

I wish that the insanity would stop, that people would realize that they are being foolish beyond belief, and that, just once, we as a society wouldn’t allow ourselves to be herded like cattle just because some stores are opening on Thanksgiving.

I will not be shopping on Thanksgiving, I will not be shopping on Black Friday — the only shopping I may do is to support my local retailer on Small Business Saturday — and I’m not even certain that I’ll do that.  I urge you to do the same.

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