Magical Blogorail Red: Dreaming of a Disney Christmas!

Magical Blogorail Red Logo

Welcome to the first stop aboard Magical Blogorail Red. Enjoy the ride as we share with you our dreams of a Disney Christmas.

Cinderella Castle Leigh Ann With Christmas just around the corner, the Magical Blogorail Red team would first like to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas, full of the wonder and excitement of Christmas, along with remembering the joy that the birth of Jesus brings to those who Believe!

For this month’s post, I’ve gone completely off the board, and instead of writing a post, I’ve adapted that most cherished of Christmas Songs — “White Christmas” by Bing Crosby, and come up with my own song to the same tune.  Before you read mine, though, I think it important that you watch the real deal first, so that you can take pity on me when you read mine!

Image Courtesy my friend Leigh Ann!

Image Courtesy my friend Leigh Ann!

And now, I present to you, “Dreaming of a Disney Christmas”

I’m Dreaming of a Disney Christmas
One that I’ve never experienced before…
With Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party,
Epcot’s Candlelight Processional, and
Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade, too!

I’m Dreaming of a Disney Christmas
That one day my family will enjoy…
Staring at the wonders that is the Osborne Family Spectacle
Enjoying Cookies and Hot Cocoa,
And watching it snow on Main Street, U.S.A. too!

Oh, I’m Dreaming of a Disney Christmas
That, for now, is only a dream…
Tho I’ve not been to Disney at Christmastime before,
One day we’ll go, of that I am certain, indeed!

All of us at My Dreams of Disney would like to wish you and your family the most wondrous of Christmas joy this holiday season.  We also would like to extend our deepest heartfelt prayers to all of you that, for some reason or another, are missing loved ones this Christmas Season, and pray that you can find your joy in the birth of our Savior, Jesus.  God Bless us all!

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 ~ My Dreams Of Disney
2nd Stop ~ Disney Donna Kay
3rd Stop ~ Pursuing the Magic
4th Stop ~ A World View
Final Stop ~ Growing Up Disney

When the World Grieves

A Tearful Mickey Mouse – hand drawn by 11 year old Sophie.

On Friday, December 14th, 2012, the small town of Newtown, Connecticut, was struck with a grief so intense, it has shaken a nation — even a world — to it’s core.  On that morning, as you all likely know by now, a gunman came into Sandy Hook Elementary School and ended the lives of innocent lives.

As a parent of an eleven year old, that news hit home.  Part of me was thinking “How could this happen?” while another part of me was thinking “This was a movie scene, right?  It didn’t really happen, did it?”  Well, you all know that it did happen, and it is in the aftermath of such a tragedy that we struggle mightily to deal with the grief, and to try to explain to our children when they hear about it why such a thing could happen.  When the world grieves, what, as a parent, can you do?

I thought long and hard this weekend about whether or not to write a post — so much so that I haven’t posted anything since Friday to the site.  In the end, though, I decided that, perhaps, if I did write about it, someone, somewhere that is grieving right now might take comfort in knowing that this little blogger and his family are thinking of them.

When tragedy strikes such as this, more then anything it brings me back to my Bible, and it is a reaffirmation of what Jesus tells us in John 16:33:

“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.”

No one right now is going through as much hurt as those families who have lost loved ones.  But they have one thing going for them, as sad as it is for them to comprehend right now — their loved ones are in the arms of Jesus right now, and while they are left behind, Jesus has not forgotten them, and He is giving them the strength they need right now to get through this, as well as bringing his Peace upon them.

it is far too easy to ask why in cases like this. It is really easy to be angry with God for allowing this to happen, and that is probably happening right now.  I don’t pretend to have the answers about why this has happened, and I don’t think that we will ever really know why this happened.  What I do know, though, is that our God is a loving God, that Jesus has won, even though it may not seem like it is so right now.  It is really easy to let our grief lead us down a road that takes us into sin through anger, and if this is happening to you right now, please, PLEASE, get down on your knees right now, clasp your hands together, and pray to God to give you the Peace you need — the Peace that only Jesus can provide — so that you won’t give in to your anger and do something that could cause more grief.  If you have sinned as a result of your anger, do the same thing — but first ask God to forgive you for your sin.  He will forgive you.  He always forgives those who ask forgiveness with a humble heart.

The grief won’t go away anytime soon, I’m afraid.  I know that it may seem like you want it to go away, that you want to just forget what has happened, but that isn’t what you should be doing, I believe.  Forgetting the grief, blocking it away, will not allow you to heal, and that wouldn’t help.  It is tough, but love always is, and saying goodbye, especially to your children, spouses, or other loved ones is never easy.  Life will go on, though, although I won’t claim that it will be any better for a while, if ever.  Your loved one is still gone, after all.

I doubt that this has been helpful to any of you, but maybe I’m wrong.  If this has helped you deal with your grief, then my objective was met.  At the very least, please know that the entire nation, but especially Newtown, Connecticut, is in my prayers, and in the prayers of my family.  God Bless Us, and God Bless the USA.

Friendship Friday: Meet my Mom!

Hello everyone, and welcome to this week’s edition of Friendship Friday, the weekly series where I share with all of you information about a special person in my life.  My first Friendship Friday was about my Sister-in-Christ Brenda, the next one was about my best friend, my wife Cindy, and last week’s post was about my wonderful daughter Sophie.  Today I’ve got another woman in my life that I want to write about — my Mom.

My Mom Ellen is a great woman.  She is the oldest child of three that my Grandma and Grandpa had, and she has had to be strong many times over the course of her life.  She is a miracle — she survived a really scary childhood illness that forced her to have to learn how to talk and walk again; she survived a very scary condition after my Grandma passed away a few years back — in fact, she wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for the heroic efforts of my Dad, but that’s a story for another day.  She has battled so many things over the course of her life (including me sometimes) — but the one thing that she has never done is backed down from what she believed was right.

My Mom has had to do a lot of things over the years, including care for her parents.  Grandma and Grandpa are both gone now, enjoying their time in Heaven with Jesus, but before they left, they had Mom there, looking after them as best she could, first in Florida, and then, when Grandma passed away, in Virginia with my Grandpa moving into Mom and Dad’s home.

When I look at my Mom, I see the best of both of my Grandparents in her.  I see the stubbornness that my Grandma had at times, along with a little dose of “If you want something, go get it yourself!”  The funny thing was that, when my Grandma was younger, if she came to our house to visit, then she took over the kitchen.  When they got older, and we would go to her house to visit, she would tell us we knew where it was, to help ourselves.  We picture her getting to Heaven and telling Jesus if he wanted anything He knew where it was, go help Himself!  My Mom, thankfully, has developed a little bit of that herself.

In addition to the qualities of my Grandma that I see in Mom, I also see some of my Grandpa in her.  Those qualities are more about her carefree attitude with things.  Mom can get upset about things, that much is certain, but her laughter, which is often evident, reminds me of Grandpa.

Now that my Grandparents have moved on to Heaven, I’ve seen a welcome change come over my Mom.  She is more carefree — she and Dad are taking more small trips then they used to, they are enjoying their lives as husband and wife together perhaps a bit more.  It’s not like they didn’t enjoy themselves before, and that they wished that Grandpa didn’t live there — that’s not it at all.  It’s just that they are able to do things that they just weren’t able to do before.  It’s hard to explain, and I’m doing a lousy job I’m sure, but I’m glad that they have been able to do these things, and I look forward to hearing about their journeys on this stage of their lives for many years to come.

Not a day goes by that I don’t thank God for Mom.  I may not tell you every day, Mom, but I love you, and each day Sophie grows, I learn more about the kind of parents you and Dad were to Robin and I.  I love you, Mom, and I hope you have enjoyed being the center of attention today.

Special thanks goes out to my friend Heidi from Heidi’s Head — it was from Heidi that I first learned about this special series that she does every week.  If you want to read who she is writing about this week, just click on the image below!  Thanks for stopping by, and for learning more about my Mom.

Friendship Friday: My daughter Sophie

Hello everyone, and welcome back to this week’s Friendship Friday post!  Each week I’m spending a little time sharing some thoughts on those people in my life that are special to me.  Last week we talked about my wonderful wife Cindy, and this week, well this week we’re going to talk about our lovely daughter Sophie!

Sophie was a wee little lass when she was born, weighing in at just 4 pounds, 2 ounces, and at only 17 1/2″ long.  She was born 7 weeks early, not because she wanted to be born early, but because Cindy got very, very sick with a rare form of Pre-Eclampsia called Help Syndrome.

In the picture above, you see Sophie grasping my finger at the tender age of 2 (days, not years) as I was visiting her in the NICU.  Sophie ended up spending just two weeks in there, which to us was quite remarkable because we saw some young ones that had already been in for three and four weeks when Sophie was born.

Sophie is now 11, and has grown up to be a typical 6th grader, and just like her dad, is a big fan of Walt Disney World!  In fact, she might even be a bigger fan of Disney then I am!  My first trip to Walt Disney World was when I was 11 — Sophie just made her 9th trip to Disney World!

She isn’t perfect, but she isn’t supposed to be, either.  She has her own set of problems, starting with the fact that she has organization issues, doesn’t do the work that she is supposed to do when it’s supposed to be done, and can be maddeningly stubborn, just like me.  But she does have wonderful gifts, and it’s those gifts that I choose to look at more then her shortcomings.  She is incredibly sympathetic to those in need; she is funny, witty, and loves Jesus; and she loves her Mommy and Daddy, even though it seems like there are times when she goes out of her way to get in trouble.

In the end, I guess what you should know about Sophie  is that she has a loving, gentle heart, and a kind soul.  She is a person that, should you be fortunate to meet her and be her friend, you would not regret that decision.  Most of all, though, Sophie is our little girl, our baby, our pride and joy, and the love of our lives.

Sophie, Magic Kingdom, Dapper Dans, Fantasyland

Sophie surrounded by members of The Dapper Dans!

I can’t take credit for this idea — it belongs squarely with my good friend Heidi from Heidi’s Head!  She started this, and I ran with it also, so go check out her Friendship Friday posts also by clicking on the button below!  Thanks for stopping by!

 

Friendship Friday: My best friend, my wife Cindy

Magic Kingdom, Mickey's Toontown Fair, Pluto

Cindy and Pluto at Mickey’s Toontown Fair

Hello everyone, and welcome to week two of our new series, Friendship Friday!  Today I want to talk about the woman in my life that is my best friend, my soul mate, the one person that I love with all my heart — my wife Cindy.

Cindy and I have been married for twelve years now, and we have had many exciting adventures together!  Of course, our daughter Sophie is the most exciting adventure, and if you look at the picture above, Sophie is in that picture also!  This photo was taken when Cindy and I took our trip in January, 2001, before Sophie was born, when we ate our way through Disney!

Cindy hates to have her picture taken — so she will kill me when she sees this post.  But before she does, I want you all to know what I see in this picture when I look at it.

For starters, I see a girl that is having the time of her life!  There is such a big grin on that face, you know that she is enjoying her time there with Pluto!

I see a woman who is not afraid to have fun — her enthusiasm is plain to see!  In addition, I see a loving soul.  What person who didn’t have a lot to give — and who hates to have her picture made — would allow a picture to be taken of them?!  Of course, Cindy didn’t know that nine years later I would start my own Disney blog!  Neither did I, for that matter!

I see a vibrant, exciting woman.  One that, although she was going through so many changes with the pregnancy, was still up for taking a long weekend and enjoying some time at Walt Disney World!  Now that’s a keeper!

There are so many things that you can’t see about Cindy when you look at a picture.  The love for Sophie she has.  The concern she always has for Sophie and me.  How she always says “Be careful” before I leave for work every morning.  Her concern for her fellow person.  Her love of Jesus.

All of these things and more add up to my wife Cindy, and it is because of her that I am the most Blessed man.  I love you Sweetie, now and forever.

Mikey

Walt Disney World, Magic Kingdom, Mickey's Toontown Fair, Donald Duck

Mike with Donald Duck

Don’t forget that Friendship Friday was the idea of my friend Heidi from Heidi’s Head!  Click on the button below to head over and see what she has to share with us for her Friendship Friday selection!  Thanks for stopping by!