World Showcase

Magical Blogorail: World Showcase at Night

World Showcase

Spaceship Earth at night is a majestic ball of incredible lights!

As far as I am concerned, Walt Disney World is so much more incredible to experience at night.  That’s why my family is always looking for the evening extra magic hours over the morning.  When it comes to specific areas of Walt Disney World that truly shine after dark, I look no further than the World Showcase area of Epcot.  Today, we are going to talk about some of the incredible things we’ve seen here, and you might too on your next visit!

For this hopeless romantic, few locations on Disney property hold the sway that World Showcase does for me after dark settles in.  For starters, I love the way the path just flows from country to country, pavilion to pavilion, all the way around World Showcase Lagoon.  There’s a tranquility there, a sense of calm, a timeless about it that just really strikes home in this writer’s heart.  It takes me back, back to that very first trip to Epcot, in the summer of 1983, when my grandparents took me, and we went with friends of theirs that had their grandson visiting also.  I remember, that was the very first time in a setting that big that I had been allowed to go (with Chris, of course) off without any adult supervision.  But it was Disney, and my Grandparents knew it would be all right.

The charm of the World Showcase at night is that it grabs you, clutches at you, drawing you this way and that, and all the while, the crowds start thinning out because they are heading towards the bus terminals, or their rooms on the Boardwalk, or maybe they’re driving back home; regardless, the night and the park soon feels like you and your special someone are the only ones there.  I remember one recent trip, we were walking around World Showcase, and we came to the drawbridge, and it went up!  We happened to be there when the giant Earth from Illuminations was passing through on it’s way back to where it is stored, and I was able to capture this photo with my phone…

World Showcase

The Illuminations Globe passes by on it’s way to bed for the night.

I had never seen it up close like that before, and haven’t seen it that close since.

Of course, the World Showcase at night also means fireworks!  Namely, IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth.  This fireworks show to me is incredible, and now, with Wishes closed down over at the Magic Kingdom, is the longest running fireworks show at Walt Disney World.  IllumiNations strikes a great balance between fireworks, laser light affects, narration, and music, and is a great way to kick off the rest of the evening at Epcot.

World Showcase

In the end, the World Showcase at night is about more than a particular attraction; it’s about more than a special fireworks show; it’s about more than getting one last drink before heading out.  World Showcase at night, to me, is all about slowing down, reliving the day with your family and friends, and sharing a special, Magical moment with the one you love most.  That is why I like walking World Showcase at night.  What about you?  Do you like exploring the World Showcase at night? Let me know in the comments, and thanks for stopping by!


For more ways to enjoy evenings at Disney,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


Magical Blogorail: Disney Splurges – Specialty Apparel

There are a lot of things in this world that we want but don’t need. And that is why we invented the word ‘Splurge’! And when we go to a Disney resort or theme park, we just might splurge on a piece of specialty apparel.

Welcome to this month’s Blogorail Blue Loop. Today we are sharing fun ways to splurge at Disney.


T-shirts for all!

Now let’s get serious. A t-shirt would never qualify as a ‘splurge’ but rather an indulgence we all partake of due to the relatively inexpensive cost of such a piece of Disney clothing. Well, until Disney cranks up the retail price!

No, to qualify as a true ‘splurge’ the item must be frivolous, ridiculous, or unreasonably expensive. Let’s look at something frivolous first:

Frivolous: Not having any serious purpose or value. I think we can all agree that a rainbow sombrero would qualify as a frivolous clothing purchase! You can splurge on one of  these beauties at the Mexico Pavilion in Epcot at Walt Disney World.

Besides, you know you couldn’t look as good as I do in one, so why invite disappointment? Next, we look at something ridiculous:

Ridiculous: Deserving or inviting derision or mockery; absurd. This little Minnie Mouse ensemble might work for a costume party but outside of that it would have very little value in anyone’s wardrobe! Unless you were a young girl with a strong sense of self. For anyone else, buying this would be a ridiculous waste of money, invite mockery, but… constitute a definite ‘splurge’!

Now let’s look at something expensive:

Expensive: Costing a lot of money. Buying anything from a source country while visiting the pavilions in Epcot is definitely one way to spend a lot of money. So perhaps this would be the ultimate splurge when it comes to specialty apparel!

At the Japan Pavilion, a Cast Member will help you pick out a custom Kimono Robe with all the accessories. When we went to Walt Disney World in 2006, we could afford to splurge on the above picture!

So what piece of specialty apparel at Disney do you splurge on?

For more ways to splurge at Disney,
check out the other great posts from the Blogorail!


Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail Blue  | Disney Splurges Loop:

Launch Party

Join in my Dream Disney Scents Launch Party!

Launch Party

Join in my Dream Disney Scents Launch Party!

Here we are!  Today is the start of our Scentsy launch party for Dream Disney Scents!  As I mentioned yesterday, I am a new Scentsy Consultant, and I am looking forward to help you not only plan your dream Disney vacation, but to pair it up with some incredible Scentsy scents and warmers to remind you of that trip for years to come!  So let’s get this party started!  Are you looking for some great scents to freshen up your home, ones that you can use over and over again?  Scents that don’t burn because there is no candle to light?  Well, then you need to go check out my Scentsy website!  Dream Disney Scents is your place for all of that and more, and best of all, I’ve got a special page setup just for the launch party!  Just click on our launch party link to get started!

I’m giving you plenty of opportunity to look things over and order during this party!  With Valentine’s Day coming up, I’m keeping our launch party going until that day, February 14th, so take advantage of it all!  Let me know what questions, concerns, or comments you have, and thanks for stopping by today!

My Story

I have been a travel agent and blogger for several years; I started My Dreams of Disney, in September, 2010, as a way to document the memories of trips my family has taken to Walt Disney World (and now, Disneyland).  Then, in February, 2013, I became a travel agent with Pixie Vacations.

One of the things I am excited to do is to blend my ventures together; my belief is that we all have a special scent that will draw us in and remind us of a special time and place.  With my Scentsy site, Disney Dream Scents, I believe that I will be able to capture the best of both worlds — Disney and Scentsy — and marry them together so that they work together to enhance your vacation even more.

Picture this in your Mind’s Eye:  You have contacted me, and we have planned a great trip for you to stay at the Beach Club over the summer.  As part of my service and as a thank you to you, perhaps a special warmer is heading your way, with a bar of the Scentsy scent that reminds you of that special trip you took with your family.

Whether you are going to Disney or not, I’m here to help you.  Reach out to me, tell me your thoughts, and let’s work together to get that special scent to your house to take you to back to that memory you don’t want to ever forget!

What scent will you choose to pair with the resort you last stayed at?  Let me know in the comments below, click on our launch party link, and let’s get started on getting that scent in your hands!

Remember, Disney & Scentsy is a great combination!

Who wins the poll: #TeamParks!

Who wins the poll

The Winner is #TeamParks!

Who Wins the Poll?

By Mike Ellis.

As my friend Roe so creatively put it, she is a a fan of #TeamParks in our poll that we had last week — and she’s not the only one either!  The voting was sparse, as most of my polls are, but fun nonetheless — and with 61% of the vote, The Parks wins!  This is an open ended poll, so there is no closing date assigned, so if you wish to go vote in it, you can do so!  Just click on over and tell us what you like most about Disney!

Who wins the poll

What do you like most about Disney?

Part of the reason for conducting this poll was to get an idea of what sorts of things you wanted to see us write about on the blog.  We’ve been around for over five years now, so we’ve written a lot of things — but we are always looking for input from you, our readers, on what you would like to see us dive into.  Hence, the poll.  So, here’s an open ended question, just like our poll — do you have something you would like to see us dig into in an upcoming blog post?  If so, there are several ways you can reach out to us!  You can leave us a comment here on this post; you can shoot us an email to mickey@mydreamsofdisney.com; you can comment or message us on our Facebook or Google+ pages; or you can shoot us a Tweet on Twitter.  So make yourself heard, let your voice be counted, tell us what you want to see explored in more detail, and we’ll get to work!  Thanks for joining us, and for those that voted, thanks for doing so!  Until next time, go out and make it a great Disney Day!

What Makes Disney, Disney

For this post, I wanted to take some time and talk with you about all of the things that we have encountered on our trips to Walt Disney World that truly make it our vacation spot of choice.

We have had several trips, as you know if you are a regular reader; Sophie has been six times in her nine years for at least one day.  It is as easy a decision for me to book this trip as any that we make.

We have had so many times where the Disney Cast Members (Disney staff are not employees, they are Cast Members) have shared with us the Disney Magic that I am certain to forget some of those great times.  However, here is a rundown of the ones that I remember.

  • When we took our first trip to Coronado Springs resort, that was during Disney’s Year of a Million Dreams celebration.  You may have heard about it; they were giving away gifts to random Guests, they included everything from free Disney Pins to spending the night in Cinderella’s Castle.  Well, we had our own special Dream happen to us while we were visiting.  One morning, as we were in the Main Street Bakery eating our breakfast, one of the Cast Members came over to us to talk to us.  She asked Sophie about her trip, and who her favorite Princess was.  When Sophie said Cinderella, the Cast Member then presented Sophie with a huge chocolate chip cookie that was a gift from Cinderella herself!  Cinderella had seen the Cast Member and asked her if she could give that cookie to Sophie for her!  That made Sophie’s day, and that cookie lasted us all day!
  • Some of the best experiences we have had at Disney are related to our dining.  The character dining experiences we have had have been second to none — being able to enjoy a fabulous dinner while having the ability to get autographs and pictures with our favorite characters has been great!  We have had so many more photos and autographs with the characters than we could have ever hoped to have by standing in line.  Take a look at the joy in Sophie’s face at this picture with Eeyore:
  • One day as we were leaving our resort to go to the parks, we were greeted by a Cast Member who asked Sophie about the trip she was having.  After we talked with him for a while, he presented Sophie with a set of pins — one for Sophie to keep, and one to give to her BFF, Riley.
  • In 2009, during our first trip to Disney’s Port Orleans Resort — French Quarter, nearly every day we were there we had the best pair of door openers you could ask for.  They were extremely friendly, really really knowledgeable, and every time that we would see them they would give Sophie Mardi Gras beads and coins for the wishing well.  Their outgoing personality truly fit the French Quarter lifestyle, and I was saddened when I didn’t see them during our second visit to POFQ.
  • As I have mentioned before, riding in the Monorail is one of the things that just keeps building the excitement of approaching the Magic Kingdom for a visit.  However, until just a couple of years ago, I had never ridden in the very front car of the Monorail.  Well, that all changed one year when we were able to ride in the front of the monorail twice!  It was a lot of fun, the pilot was really nice and answered questions we had.  Also, we got special souvenir cards documenting that we were official “Honorary” monorail pilots at Walt Disney World, and stickers with our “Monorail Wings”.  Sadly, with a monorail accident a couple of years ago, that practice is now discontinued, but I am glad that we were able to enjoy it.
  • In 2007, during our first Coronado Springs resort visit, I decided that my souvenir for the trip would be a pin trading kit so I could start trading pins.  In 2008, Sophie decided that she was ready to begin pin trading as well.  The excitement that child gets when she approaches a cast member to trade a pin is phenomenal.  Sophie will even make a bad trade for her, just for the experience of trading with a Cast Member!
  • Last year, when my niece Stephanie and I were waiting for our food at Cosmic Rays, we were greeted by a Cast Member who was extremely exuberant in his greeting.  He asked us if we were having a Magical Day, and when we asked him about his day, his answer was “A bad day at Disney is still a better day than anywhere else!”  He went on to ask, “Where else can you work where at the Happiest Place on Earth?!”  We were both extremely excited by his outlook, and that is just one of the things that separates Disney from everywhere else.
  • In 2009, while we were at the Mexico pavilion at Epcot, we were there during extra magic hours.  We went to ride the “Three Cabalero’s” ride, and walked right on, since that ride isn’t heavily trafficked, especially in extra magic hours.  Anyway, we enjoyed the ride, and as we proceeded up the ramp, we asked the attendant if we could ride again.  Since she didn’t have anyone in line, she just continued us on, with us serenading her with a chorus of “Gracias, Mucho Mucho Gracias!”.  She just laughed.
  • Yet another thing that makes Disney truly magical occurred the last time we were visiting.  That was this past June, and that was the trip my niece Stephanie accompanied us.  We were there over Sophie’s birthday, and on the morning of her birthday, I woke up to find the phone message light blinking.  When I checked the message, it was none other than the King and Queen of the Mice, Mickey and Minnie, calling to leave Sophie a message wishing her a truly wonderful birthday!
  • In 2008, when we stayed at Coronado Springs for the second straight year, we were there for Sophie’s birthday.  On the day of her birthday, after we had left to go to the park for the day, Minnie Mouse and her team came to our room and decorated Sophie’s bed with birthday balloons and a birthday card (which included a picture of Minnie Mouse for Sophie to keep).  Additionally, every time we have come for Sophie’s birthday (which was 2008 and 2010), Sophie has been given a special desert at each sit-down meal we have each day of our trip, and this year, she also received birthday cards signed by her character friends.
  • Another thing that makes Disney Disney is how excited Sophie gets when surprise her with a trip to Disney.  I remember in 2009 it didn’t look like we were going to be able to go to Walt Disney World.  We were worried about the affect that the economy would have on our jobs.  Well, as the summer progressed, we were able to determine that we would be able to afford the trip after all, so we made our plans.  However, we kept that little secret from Sophie until the day we left.  I’ll never forget it.  One of the playlists I have on my iPod is called “Mickey Mouse”, and it is a collection of songs by Mickey and the gang.  Sophie told me that she didn’t want to hear the playlist again until the day we were actually in the car heading to Disney, so I didn’t play it — until the day we left.  Here is her reaction to hearing that music in the car:


Needless to say, it was quite a surprise for Sophie!

I know that I have left out a great many of the special times that have made up our trips to Disney, but all in all, I think you get the picture of why we love going to Walt Disney World.  There are so many other stories to tell, I can’t wait to relive those moments with you in the upcoming days.  Have a magical day, and may the sun never set on your Disney (or other) Dreams!  Thanks for reading!