Disney Memories 2012

Our Favorite Disney Memories 2012

Disney Memories 2012

Our Disney Memories from 2012, here we are at Akershus!

Hello everyone, and welcome to back to our Disney Memories series.  For this post, we are taking a look at our Disney Memories 2012, that special trip that we took with Kerry, Neal, River, Izaiah, Monica, Madelyne-Lois, Shane, Kyle, and Stephanie.  The buildup for this trip was incredible to me, it felt like it would never get here!  For this trip, we stayed at Kidani Village, which is part of the Animal Kingdom Lodge, and had a great time!  It was the first trip for everyone except us, Stephanie, Shane, and Kyle, and we made sure we did some things that they would remember for the rest of their lives!  In the first picture, all of us (except Kyle, Shane and Stephanie, who ate separately from us) were posing with Belle for our picture before dinner at Akershus for Princess Storybook Dining.  This excellent restaurant is located in Norway in Epcot’s World Showcase, and is a favorite of mine.

In addition to Akershus, we ate at the Crystal Palace, Via Napolli, Cinderella’s Royal Table, the Garden Grill, and Chef Mickey’s.

Disney Memories 2012

Sophie had the Dapper Dan’s play Happy Birthday to her previously, and this time also!

Disney Memories 2012

This trip was special because Cindy and I had some time to see the parks by ourselves!

This picture of Cindy, Tinkerbell and myself is special because we were entering Epcot by the International Gateway and there she was with hardly no line!  It was a great surprise and some neat Disney Magic!

Disney Memories 2012

When we rode Star Tours, I actually WAS the rebel spy!

We rode Star Tours one night, and there wasn’t much line at all, but the seating worked out that most of our party was in the very back, and Cindy and I were in the row in front of them.  It was so funny when we got in and got going — this being the first time we had ridden it since the renovation, mind you — and I was selected as the Rebel Spy!  It was so funny!

Disney Memories 2012

Beast’s Rose at Kidani Village

The night before we were going to be checking out, Cindy and I went down to where the car was parked to take some things there so we wouldn’t have to mess with them in the morning.  When we came back, we stopped by the lobby, and this rose was right on the check-in counter.  It was so cool, Disney Magic was at it’s romantic best!

Disney Memories 2012

By far, though, my most lasting Disney Memory was of Stephanie and Shane.

Without a doubt, though, my all time favorite Disney Memory from that 2012 trip was this one — the night that Shane proposed to his girlfriend (and now wife) Stephanie in front of Cinderella Castle.  I knew it was going to happen, so I was asked to be there to take photos, and I was lucky to get this one amidst all the tears that were flowing.  They are such a wonderful loving couple, every time I see them and this picture it brings a smile to my face.  Today also just happens to be the birthday of Stephanie, so what better way to celebrate than by remembering this moment that is frozen in time for all eternity!

Thank you for stopping by to visit and relive our Disney Memories 2012!  What special Disney memories do you have?  Please let me know in the comments, and thank you for stopping by!  Now, please go out and make today a great Disney Day!

Our Favorite Disney Memories 2010

Stephanie, Snow White, and Sophie enjoy a picture at Akershus!

Stephanie, Snow White, and Sophie enjoy a picture at Akershus!

Hello everyone, and welcome to our Favorite Disney Memories 2010 edition!  So much happened in this trip in June 2010 for Sophie’s birthday that I almost don’t know where to start!  I’ll do my best, though, and I hope you enjoy my walk down memory lane.  At the end of the post, please share your favorite Disney memories in our comments section, and thanks!

The picture at the top was taken at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall for our Princess Storybook Dining character dinner!  I think the combination of my niece Stephanie, my daughter Sophie, and Snow White is a great combination!

This trip started with a big surprise for Sophie — she found out the night before we were leaving that Stephanie was coming with us!  We arranged for Stephanie to ring the doorbell when she got to our house, and I had Sophie answer it.  When she saw her cousin, after hugs and kisses and excitement, she whispered to me “Daddy, why is she here?”  It was a great moment, and one that we all will never forget!

This picture of the bridge at the Boardwalk region of Disney is a fun one for me!

This picture of the bridge at the Boardwalk region of Disney is a fun one for me!

One thing we did on this trip that we had never done before was spend an evening at the Boardwalk region of Disney!  It was a lot of fun, and we made a point to spend time there before we got all inundated at the parks, so we actually did this before we even checked in to our resort hotel!  We made plans to eat at the Captain’s Grille, which is a restaurant one of my friends used to work at, and then we spent the night just walking around the boardwalk, checking out the shopping, enjoying the street performers, and having a great night all around.

I enjoy this great picture of my niece and I from our visit to the Crystal Palace!

I enjoy this great picture of my niece and I from our visit to the Crystal Palace!

This trip was a lot of fun — we even got a great picture of my niece Stephanie and I from the Crystal Palace!  This trip had it all; great family memories, fantastic dining using the Disney Dining Plan, Sophie and Stephanie walking around the parks like they were sisters, and Cindy and I just taking it all in and enjoying every minute of it!

The Mickey & Friends Railroad located at the DVC Welcome Center at Saratoga Springs!

The Mickey & Friends Railroad located at the DVC Welcome Center at Saratoga Springs!

This trip was special in many other ways, also, including the fact that we purchased our DVC ownership on this trip!  That was such a big decision, but it was the right one, because since we bought our ownership interest, we have been to Walt Disney World with our close family, great friends, and we have stayed at Bay Lake Tower, Kidani Village, the Grand Californian Hotel, and this year, back to Bay Lake Tower!

Sophie received this pirate gear at Downtown Disney!

Sophie received this pirate gear at Downtown Disney!

But, without a doubt, the biggest memory from our trip was celebrating Sophie’s 9th birthday.  She loves celebrating at Disney, and one day during that trip, we took the water taxi from Port Orleans French Quarter, our resort, to Downtown Disney.  When we were getting off the taxi, the captain wished Sophie a happy birthday, and then he had us hang on a minute, and he pulled out of his bag of tricks a Princess Pirate getup.  That little gesture absolutely made Sophie’s day, and she wore the bandana with pride, and also the eye patch and sword too!  Lastly, at Hollywood Studios, as we were finishing up our visit for the year, Sophie’s Happy Birthday button became worn out from water rides, heat, sweat, and you name it.  One of the Disney artists saw it, took Sophie’s button, wiped off the sharpie, and then proceeded to spend about 15 minutes decorating her name in the Disney font, and adding glitter, and puffy ink, and all that.  It was a great keepsake, and absolute proof to how incredible the Disney Cast Members truly are.

Thank you my friends for visiting today, and remember, I love hearing memories, so please send me your favorite memories by leaving them in the comments below!  Now, go out there and make today and everyday a great Disney Day!

 

 

Happy Birthday Shane!

Shane and I having a laugh with my silly Mickey Ears on!

Shane and I having a laugh with my silly Mickey Ears on!

Today is the birthday of Shane, the man that stole the heart of my niece Stephanie and holds it close to his!  Shane turns 26 years old today, and his best birthday present is that he is going to be coming home next week from Basic Training and AIT!  He has been gone for a long time to those of us that miss him, but in the case of his wife Stephanie, I think it feels like an eternity to her.  With this post, I hope to describe in words and pictures what the inclusion of Shane into our family has meant to Cindy, Sophie and I, so please follow along as I honor him on his special day.

Shane and Steph on Big Thunder Mountain Railroad!

Shane and Steph on Big Thunder Mountain Railroad!

Shane and Stephanie at Pullen Park

Shane and Stephanie at Pullen Park

Shane and Mike at Pullen Park

Shane and Mike at Pullen Park

Shane (on right) and Kyle enjoying a fun moment with the R2D2 hats they were trying on!

Shane (on right) and his brother Kyle enjoying a fun moment with the R2D2 hats!

Before we went to Walt Disney World as a big group in 2012, though, I learned a very important secret — Shane told me that he was going to propose to Stephanie while we were there, and he asked if I would take some pictures along with his brother Kyle.  Shane has written about this, which you can read about here in much better detail, but I thought I would remember that special time in photos once again.

 

Shane Proposing to Stephanie in front of Cinderella Castle!

Shane Proposing to Stephanie in front of Cinderella Castle!

Shane and Stephanie with Cinderella Castle in the background.

Shane and Stephanie with Cinderella Castle in the background.

 

Shane and Stephanie trying on the Mickey and Minnie Bride Ear Hats that Sophie bought for them.

Shane and Stephanie trying on the Mickey and Minnie Bride Ear Hats that Sophie bought for them.

And lastly, one more picture to share with you…one that was taken by a real professional, Kara, who took the photos for Steph and Shane’s wedding.  This is one of my favorite photos from that beautiful day, and I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do!

Image Courtesy and ©Kara Smith Photography

Image Courtesy and ©Kara Smith Photography

So, Shane, today we celebrate you, your life with Stephanie, and the fact that you two will be reunited in just a few short days.  I hope you enjoy your birthday, and remember that we look forward to the day when we can greet you once again in person.  Thank you for your service, and thank you too Stephanie, for choosing Military service is a hard path for everyone in a family that chooses to serve.  We love you, happy birthday Shane!

 

 

 

 

My Dreams of Disney turns 3 years old!

mdod-2

 

My friends, today is a big day in the life of My Dreams of Disney!  It was exactly three years ago that I started my blog, and it continually humbles me to know how many of you stop by and visit to read what I have to write.  When I first started My Dreams of Disney, my sole purpose in starting the blog was to write about the memories of past trips to Walt Disney World.  This idea was born because in June of that year my niece Stephanie came to Walt Disney World as a surprise to Sophie, and they had such a great time that Stephanie proceeded to accompany us four times in a row!

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Prayers for the Week – Jesus Saves

isaiah 53v5

Isaiah 53:5:

But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on Him, and by His wounds we are healed.

My friends, the world is full of trouble, turmoil, and sorrow, and it seems like there was a whole heap of it piled up this week.  When I am troubled, I try to remember who my Lord and Savior is, just in case I’ve forgotten; His name is Jesus, and no greater price was ever paid for me than the price that He paid for me.  Never forget that Jesus Saves — if we call on Him to do so on our behalf!

Prayer Requests

Like I said, there is a lot of grief right now — and some of it resides in the heart of little Foley, Alabama, right now.  Let me tell you about a Shining Star named Meleney, and how, at the tender young age of 20, she is staring death right in the face.

  • Meleney was the student of my friend Amanda and her husband Carl; she went to the high school that they work at.  She is a wonderful person, and she is surrounded by wonderful people that love her and care deeply for her.  However, she is dying, stricken with a form of cancer called Ewing’s Sarcoma, and she is dealing with the thought of not being with us very much longer — perhaps even days.  I can’t really describe it as well as Amanda did, so I’m sharing her post from the other day; in it, there is a call to action, if you are able, to donate to the costs that this young girl and her family have had to endure.  Please read the post, donate if you can, but most of all, pray.  That is what we are here for.  Pray for Meleney, pray for her Peace, her Comfort, her Strength; pray that she KNOWS Jesus, and that He KNOWS her; pray for her salvation; pray for her family; but most of all, pray boldly for a cure, if it is God’s Will that this would happen.  Pray.
  • My niece Stephanie had surgery last week.  She has been struggling with some issues for too long now, and the procedure they did was the first step — and hopefully the biggest step — in getting her back to the healthy, vibrant, loving young lady that I know her to be.  She is a strong Christian, but I’m certain that she is ready for God to take this tribulation out of her life.  Please pray for her recovery, for her health, that it be turned for the better now, and that she would be able to heal quickly and be back to her old self in no time.  Thank you.
  • Yesterday was the 9th Anniversary of my Uncle Phil’s passing — and his ascension to Heaven.  The days speed quickly by, and it really doesn’t seem like it has been nine years — but to my cousins Beth, Anne, Cathy, and my Aunt Clare, I’m certain that it seems to them like the longest nine years of their lives.  They have learned how to continue on with out their Dad/Husband in their lives; but they also know that he is watching over them, and that they will see him again.  Still, each anniversary is a day that they don’t want to see coming, so please think of them, and pray for their comfort this weekend.  I miss my Uncle Phil — he immediately took to my wife Cindy, going out of his way to thank her for naming our little girl after his Mom — so thank you for thinking of us and praying for us.
  • Lord, there are many people who don’t have the courage or the voice to express their prayer requests — so please lift up their unspoken requests and deal with those also.  Lord, you know all, so you know the words to the prayers even when we can’t express them.  Hear their unspoken prayers, and grant us all the Peace that only YOU can provide.

Praises!

  • Lord, throughout the turmoil that goes on, You are there for us if we but call on You.  It seems that it is easier for us to call on You when we are in trouble, but I praise you and give thanks for You each and every day, in the good days and the bad.  Lord, please help us to remember You during the days when there is no trouble — so that we may thank You for the good we have in our lives!
  • Lord, thank you also for all of my blessings; my family, Cindy, Sophie, my parents, sister, and everyone else.
  • Lord, thank you for the jobs that we have, and the ability we have to provide for our families.
  • Lord, thank you for my brothers and sisters in Christ, starting with the men from the Men’s Study, but certainly not excluding anyone else.
  • Lord, thank you for the freedom that we have because of the men and women of our armed forces, past and present, who give of themselves — and in some cases paid the ultimate price — so that we would be free.
  • Lord, thank you for my niece Stephanie, who is now an Army Wife, and her husband Shane, who continues to excel in his basic training and advanced infantry training.  Please see him safely home on time next month!

Lord, there are so many other things to thank you for, you know all that is in my heart, and I thank you for your Spirit that you gave to me to guide me on my journey!  May we all have a great week ahead, but not forget that you are the reason for our successes; and if we ignore you, we are the reason our week may not be as easy as it should be.  Thank you for hearing our prayers and praises, Lord!  It is in your name that we pray. Amen.