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Friday Five: Disney World Preparation Edition

I think I may have mentioned before, that I am currently in graduate school and writing my thesis on Copyright issues and the Walt Disney Company. With graduation almost here, it is crunch time for my paper. I still have a long way to go and while I was hoping to get to the Walt Disney Family Museum to complete it, airfares to California are insane. Fortunately, I have a very thoughtful funny who is willing to drive me to Florida to get some first hand interviews at Walt Disney World. So, in a few weeks, we will be driving there. Lucky for us, the Flower and Garden Festival will have just started and crowds will be low because it is not yet Spring Break. Even though this is a “business” visit, we are still planning to pack as much fun into our short trip as possible. So, to get us ready for that trip, I bring you this week’s Friday Five – a look at some of the things we are bringing with us!

1. Le Ears Custom Ears – shortly after Halloween, I entered an instagram contest to win a pair of custom ears from the super talented Nancy of Le Ears. Nancy indulged my need for a pair of ears that reflected my graduate school work. Together, we came up with the most awesome (well I think they are), one – of – a – kind ears featuring Disney inspired fine art from Keith Haring and Andy Warhol. I have been waiting months to wear these to the Wonderground Gallery!

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2. Lost Boys Club T shirt – Hunny has a spectacular collection of Disney T shirts. Junk Food Clothing makes some great ones, but they are kind of generic. They all feature images of characters. Recently I stumbled upon Lost Boys Club shirts and I fell in love. These shirts are unique and perfect for die-hard Disney Fans. How can you not love a shirt that has a Mickey Mouse ice cream bar on it??

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3. Little Gun Tank Outfits –  Ok, so I know I have gushed about her before, but Charlotte is amazing. Thanks to her, CJ will have the most epic wardrobe for our very short trip. I am sure we will have to do 3 clothing changes a day to fit everything in, but it will be so worth it. Make sure you head to her instagram page and ask for a tag when she opens up for orders again in March. And while you are there, enter her 3,000 followers giveaway.

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4. Minnie Mouse Jamberry Nail Decals – I admit it. Unlike most women, I do not like to get my nails done. I can count on one hand how many manicures I have had in my adult life. I usually do them myself and the results are underwhelming. I always look online and see the most adorable Disney themed nails and want them for my trip, but don’t really want to deal with getting them done.  Jamberry nails have changed everything for me (I’ve mentioned this before). Earlier this month, the company unveiled their Disney line and they are EPIC! Gorgeous Disney nails that you peel and stick. No nail salon required. No hefty bill for gel nails or intricate designs. They are super easy to apply and last for about two weeks. Each sheet you order can do at least two full manicures. I purchased the Mickey’s Girl design for this trip (and for CJ’s Minnie themed Birthday party), but I cannot wait to order more………Ariel, I’ve got my eye on you!

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5.Customized Celebration Buttons – I love that the  Celebration buttons from the Disney Parks are free. If you are really on a budget and not buying souvenirs, you can still get a button to celebrate your trip. There are so many different Disney-themed celebration buttons for sale, but my favorite are the Child Identification / Emergency ones made by Crowley Castle.  The last time we were in Disney, CJ still was not walking. Over a year and a half later, and things are much different. Having one of these buttons with our information makes me feel a bit more at ease. The buttons are also able to be customized with any allergies or handicaps your child may have.

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While there are so many more things, I would love to buy for our trip, I think funny would kill me for spending the money! What are your favorite things to have during your Disney vacation? Let me know in the comments.

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Happy Birthday UP!

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Today is the sixth anniversary of the release of Pixar’s UP. It is no secret that this movie holds a special place in my heart. I relate very much to Carl and Ellie. In honor of one of the most beautiful films, here is today’s Friday Five. I hope you have a wonderful weekend filled with adventure.

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1. 3D Wooden Puzzle- This puzzle is handmade and absolutely beautiful! Perfect for an UP themed birthday party or wedding, or for family game night. It comes in several different sizes, so you can definitely find one to suit your needs. This puzzle has so many great details, including the rolled up hose!

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Available on Etsy from Birdswoodshack

2. “Carl’s New Adventure” Giclee – This gallery-wrapped Giclee is by the super talented Rob Kaz. This would look great on a gallery wall or a nursery. I love that this piece is long and not your standard size. It makes the house really look like it is flying.

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Available at Disneystore.com

3. Adventure Is Out There Tank Top – I am usually not a fan of shirts that have writing on them (no logos either), but this tank top is an exception. It is a nice shape and looks like it could be a perfect summer staple.

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Available at hottopic.com

4. Grape Soda Cufflinks – Just like Carl always wore his Ellie badge, guys can wear their own grape soda pin  – and without putting a hole in their jacket! These adorable cufflinks are perfect for Father’s Day!

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Available on Etsy from JegasCreations

5. Carl Cookie Cutter – This might be one of my favorite Etsy finds ever. I would eat Carl cookies all day if I had this. It is so fun and unexpected. There are also Dug and Russell cutters for sale. I wish I knew about these when I was planning CJ’s first birthday party!

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Available on Etsy from TopCookieMore

Friday Five: The Most Romantic Disney Couples

Valentine’s Day is almost here and I cannot think of a better way to celebrate than by watching a romantic movie with the one you love. So, today’s Friday Five celebrates the most romantic Disney couples.

1. Carl and Ellie – in 8 minutes, Pixar tells us one of the most beautiful love stories ever. Carl and Ellie meet as kids, bond over their love of adventure, fall in love, get married and make a life together. Their dreams of a family are shattered, but their love never fails them. Even after Ellie’s death, Carl still looks to make her happy and make her dreams come true.

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This couple set the bar pretty high in the love/romance department

2. Wall-E and Eve – Wall-E is a hopeless romantic who makes everyone he comes in contact with happy. He is sweet, innocent and longs to hold Eve’s hand. Finding Eve makes Wall-E realize he is not always going to be alone, and deep down that is something we all worry about. When Eve sees the recording of all the things Wall-E did for her while she was “asleep,” she realizes how much she cares for him.

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All he wants is to hold her hand

3: Aladdin and Jasmine – When Princess Jasmine runs away from her palace and gets in trouble at the marketplace, Aladdin comes to her rescue. Before he even knows she is the princess, he has fallen in love with her. Jasmine is in awe is of his simple lifestyle and freedom. They both long for a life different from their own. The two fall for each other from the start and even finish each other’s sentences.

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Do you trust me?

4. Rapunzel and Flynn – My heart melts every time I watch Tangled and Flynn finally falls for Rapunzel. The way he looks at Rapunzel is the way every girl dreams someone will look at her! Flynn gives Rapunzel the courage to follow her dream and Rapunzel shows Flynn that there is a lot more to life than money. When he tells her “you were my new dream,” I sob.

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ugh the way he looks at her!

5. George and Meg – the first time I watched Paperman, I cried. Truth is, I cried the second and third times as well. George falls in love with Meg at first sight and in just six minutes we watch him risk his job to get the attention of the beautiful stranger he saw on the train platform.

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You never know where you will find the love of your life 

Have a wonderful Valentine’s Day!

Friday Five: Disney World Vacation Highlights

After 9 awesome days in Disney World , we came home Tuesday a little sad that it ended, but filled with some great memories. Here are the top five highlights from our trip.

1: Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party – MNSSHP is by far my favorite thing to do at Disney. If you can schedule your vacation around one of the nights of this annual fall event, do it. It is so much fun. Disney goes all out for Halloween. Gorgeous decorations are put up throughout the park and on party nights there are extra special touches, like Halloween themed balloons (Jack Skellington), characters in costumes and special character appearances. Meeting Jack Skellington and Sally was awesome. My husband and I dressed up like young Carl and Ellie and CJ was Kevin ( I told you we were Up obsessed). We got to trick or treat around the park and we saw so many cool costumes. MNSSHP is a ticketed event. It is approximately $60 to attend the event, but it is well worth it.

 

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2: Dapper Day – Although not run by Disney, Dapper Day is a fashionable event that takes place twice a year at three Disney Parks – Disneyland, Disney World and Paris. Dapper Day aims to get people to dress in their fashionable best and head out to the parks in style. There were so many gorgeous outfits and hairstyles in Hollywood Studios that day. I had as much fun being dressed up as watching all of the stylish participants. We Disneybounded as Wall-E, Eve and the stars. It was a fun way to incorporate some Disney into our Dapper Day outfits.

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3: Memory Maker – At $149, The Memory Maker  was the best money we spent the entire trip. We have hundreds of photos from our vacation that were taken by the talented photo pass photographers. Even with having my own camera, I would have never been able to capture all of the moments without the memory maker. I was able to be in the photos and we now have the digital copies of them to use anyway we want. The money is well worth it for the peace of mind and ease of not having to take my own camera.

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4: Puerto Rico Marketplace Booth at Epcot’s Food & Wine Festival – Everything at Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival was delicious. I love the idea of bite size food. You can have a little bit of everything without overdoing it.  The Carne guisada con arroz blanco (Slow-braised beef with Puerto Rican-grown rice) was my absolute favorite. The portion was generous and the flavors were fantastic. I will think about this meal for a long time. Hopefully, the Disney Dining blog will post a recipe!

 

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5: Baby’s First Haircut – CJ doesn’t have a lot of hair. Up until a few weeks ago, I would consider her to be close to bald.  This has been extremely upsetting to me. I am not a huge fan of those giant baby headbands. Small ones are fine, but I long to put her hair in pigtails. She did have this fabulous mullet, though. Bald on top, long in the back. Ever since I was pregnant, I knew her first haircut would be in Disney. There was no hair to work with the first two times we visited with her, but this time we had something! I loved everything about the Harmony Barber Shop on Main Street. They clearly cater to kids. CJ got the first haircut package, which included personalized Mickey ears, a first haircut certificate and a sample of her hair with some confetti to take home. Her hairdresser, Diane, was a lot of fun and made CJ feel comfortable, which made us feel great. Harmony Barber Shop is small – three chairs for haircuts and a small corner to wait, but it is a great experience. Harmony doesn’t only cater to kids. CJ’s Uncle Chris got his haircut that day, too!

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Adventure Is Out There!

I finally got around to making CJ’s first year scrapbook and birthday photo book. I was very happy to cross another thing off of our Summer bucket list before Summer actually ended! While I was gathering all of the photos from CJ’s first birthday, I found some pics of the decorations, favors and keepsakes that I made for her party. I spent a lot of time crafting and making things that she might appreciate when she is older, such as the miniature suitcases and the map covered letters. My family helped out, too. There were over a dozen gingerbread houses painted and decorated to resemble Carl’s house. I also made Ellie badges (a.k.a. grape soda pins) but it was not a successful project. I used them as decoration because they seemed very dangerous and I did not want any of our guests to get hurt! My cousin created the wonderful Adventure Book invitations and the Pixar Up stamps just completed them perfectly! Here’s a look at some of the decorations.

 

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Friday Five : August Edition

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Happy August! According to the television ads and flyers, it is “Back to School” time. However, I plan on enjoying the last few weeks of summer before school officially starts. I will be soaking up the sun before the days get short again. There is so much to do and experience before the fall. Here are five things to do this August!

 

1. Guardians of the Galaxy –  Comic Book fans (hello fellow nerds!!) have been waiting since 2010 for the release of this Marvel superhero film. It is finally in theaters today. There is already a sequel in the works set for 2017.

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2. Villains Unleashed –  On August 23 in Hollywood Studios, 50 Disney Villains will come together for a nights of partying and mischief. During this special ticketed event, guests can see Hades perform with his band and treacherous treats will be served. There will be a spooky fireworks show and Oogie Boogie will be hosting a Freaky Funhouse Show on Sunset Boulevard. It will definitely be a fiendishly fun event.

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3.  Jazz Age Lawn Party –  If you are anywhere near New York on August 16 or 17, make sure you attend this annual event. Held on Governor’s Island, this party is THE place to go for flappers, jazz music, dance lessons and all things 1920s. This party is perfect for families with young kids as well as singles (what a great way to meet someone!). Dressing up is not required, but it is encouraged.  Tickets are available here.

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4. Summer Streets –  On three consecutive weekends in August beginning the 2nd, approximately 7 miles of NYC streets from the Brooklyn Bridge to Central Park are closed off to traffic and opened to the public to walk, run, bike and play. Summer Streets aims to get people thinking about alternative forms of transportation and sustaining the resources of NYC. Summer Streets is like one giant block party with games, a rock climbing wall, a zip line and healthy treats. Learn more about it here.

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5. Artist Sketch of the  Month –  Every month, Disney World and Disneyland offer their Artist Sketch of the Month at various locations in the parks. This month’s Disneyland sketch is inspired by Up and features Russell & Kevin. As I have mentioned before, we are huge Up fans. This sketch is a must-have for me, so I have been doing my best to pull some strings or find some friends who will be visiting the park during August! *Fingers Crossed*

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Friday Five: 4th of July Edition

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Happy 238th Birthday, America! To honor your independence, we compiled this list to make your 4th fantastic. Have a happy and safe day. Enjoy!

1: Have a Picnic Not everyone has access to a barbecue grill, but that should not stop you from getting outside and enjoying the day with the ones you love. Grab a blanket, pack up a lunch (extra points if you include red, white and blue foods) and head out outdoors.

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2: Julep America the Beautiful nail polish – Whether on your fingers or toes (or both), make a patriotic statement with this red, white and blue polish. There are even tiny stars in it!.Purchase it here.

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3. Red, White and Blue Daiquiris – This one is just for the adults (unless you want to make virgin ones for the kiddos, but we deserve somethings just for ourselves). Equal parts sweet and refreshing, this is the perfect drink to sip while enjoying evening fireworks. Find the recipe here.

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4. Star Spangled Moccasins – these adorable baby moccasins are not just for the 4th. Show your pride for the USA all year long and support a business that creates handmade items in America. Purchase them here. Etsy is filled with amazing handmade items from people across the country. I always check them out first before I buy something from a store.

 

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5. Fireworks – We may not be in Disney to see the best fireworks display there is, but most towns across the country have firework shows. If yours doesn’t, tune in to NBC at 8pm EST to catch the Macy’s 4th of July Firework Show from our hometown NYC

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