Friday, May 31, 2013

Mickey Mouse Pin Giveaway Tomorrow!


Last chance! A winner will be picked tomorrow at 8AM EST for this 2012 Annual Passholder Exclusive Mickey Mouse pin.

If you are one of our Facebook Likers, then you are automatically entered, and thank you!
If you haven't already done so, please visit our Facebook Page and Like us, and you will also be entered.

I'll be using the True Random Number Generator from
After a random number is picked, I will count down to the Liker that corresponds to that number.
I'll announce the winner here and on the Facebook page.
Please let all your friends know, thank you, and good luck!

Flea Market Finds: Mickey Mouse Camera Strap

My wife bought me a camera, and picked this strap up at the flea market.

It was supposed to be a gift, but she couldn't wait to give it to me, so I got it early.

I'm not sure what year it's from, or even where it was made, as "Disney" is the only marking on it.

Video: Mater's Junkyard Jamboree

The first attraction we rode in Cars Land was Mater's Junkyard Jamboree, and it was one of our favorites. We loved the music so much, it prompted us to buy the Music of Cars Land CD.

Check out yesterday's post for the story behind my Mater Teeth.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Tow Mater Teeth

True story.

I've watched the "Car Toons" animated shorts featuring Mater and his tall tales several times. In fact, at the airport the morning we were leaving for Disneyland last month, my wife and I watched a few.
One of them was "Mater the Greater" featuring Mater as a daredevil. In the short, recurring characters Mia and Tia are sporting fake Mater buck teeth, sold by Buck, the Tooth Vendor.
Upon getting to the Disneyland Resort, after checking into our resort, the first thing we did was head over to the new Cars Land at Disney California Adventure.
We had lunch at Flo's V8 Cafe, and while walking out, my wife saw a little boy wearing fake Mater teeth! I missed this, but she said we needed to find them. And find them we did, at Sarge's Surplus Hut.

I ponied up the money, opened the pack, and headed over to Mater's Junkyard Jamboree.

Lots of people took pictures of me in these, so if you are an introvert, this is not the way to go unnoticed.

I had a blast on the ride, our first ride of this visit, and these teeth are a fun reminder of the great kick off to a fantastic trip.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Disney Wedding Snow Globe

14 years ago today, my wife and I got married.
A friend got us this snow globe as a wedding gift.

"Nick and Barbie: May 29, 1999"

The usual suspects are all in attendance. Mickey and Minnie are the bride and groom.

Donald is the coachman, while Huey, Dewey and Louie are up to something, Pluto is following along. Where's Goofy?
Tying cans to the coach, of course!

Once wound up, it plays the "Wedding March".

Wait a minute, where's Daisy? No really?!
We'd invite Daisy to our wedding!

Here's to 50 plus more years!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

The Homemade Dole Whip

 A couple days ago, Nick came home with a sack full of ingredients and proclaimed that we were going to make Dole Whips! I was highly dubious. After all, Dole Whips are such a Disney experience. Is it possible to recreate perfection?

  1. 2 20 ounce cans Dole crushed pineapple with juice
  2. 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  3. 2 tablespoons lime juice
  4. 1/3 cup sugar
  5. 1 and 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream, whipped
Here are the directions:

Drain pineapple; reserving 2 tablespoons of the juice. Set aside in a small cup.

Place pineapple, lemon juice, lime juice, sugar and reserved pineapple juice in blender or food processor; cover and blend until smooth.

Pour into two 1-quart freezer zipped bags and store bags flat in freezer. Freeze 1-1/2 hours or until slushy. Whip your heavy whipping cream until stiff.

Stir pineapple slush gently into whipped cream until slightly blended, in large bowl. Return to freezer until completely frozen, about 1 hour. (thanks to Magical Recipes for the ingredients and directions)

So, is it everything we hoped it would be? Well, I personally would have only used 1 cup of heavy whipping cream or I wouldn't have drained the pineapple, because it didn't have the kick that a Disney Dole Whip has. But, it was delicious! The two of us couldn't possibly finish it all off in one sitting, so what did we do?

We filled up our Disney popsicle moulds with the rest so now we have 8 popsicles waiting for us when it starts to get really hot later this week!

Monday, May 27, 2013

A Salute to All Nations, But Mostly America!

A Happy Memorial Day to all of you, and a heartfelt thanks to all the veterans out there who have helped fight for the freedoms our wonderful country holds so dear. Your sacrifices and those of your families do not go unnoticed! Truly they don't.

Memorial Day, originally known as Decoration Day, honored only those lost while fighting in the Civil War. But during World War I the United States found itself engaged in another major conflict, and the holiday evolved to commemorate American military personnel who died in all wars.

For decades, Memorial Day continued to be observed on May 30, the date selected for the first Decoration Day. But in 1968 Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which established Memorial Day as the last Monday in May in order to create a three-day weekend for federal employees; the change went into effect in 1971. The same law also declared Memorial Day a federal holiday.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Disney's Electrical Parade, Patriotic Desktops

In honor of Memorial Day Weekend in the United States, here are a couple of desktops from Disney's Electrical Parade at the Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World, to honor America!

Professor Ludwig Von Drake

A couple weeks back, I highlighted a terrific box set, "Music of Disney: Legacy in Song." Upon listening to this collection for the first time back in 1992, I heard a song titled "The Spectrum Song," by voice actor Paul Frees as Professor Ludwig Von Drake. I knew I'd heard that song before, a memory from childhood. Professor Ludwig Von Drake first appeared on September 24th, 1961 in the cartoon An Adventure in Color as part of the first episode of Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color on NBC. In this episode he sings "The Spectrum Song."

You can find this song on iTunes, along with several others, including:
"I'm Ludwig Von Drake"
"Green with Envy Blues"
"It Gets You"
"Von Drake Variations on 'The Blue Danube"
"Professor Von Drake Discourses On Sound Recording and Takes You On an Adventure In an Echo Chamber"

If you want a fun, entertaining and off-beat listen, check it out for yourself. Look for more Ludwig Von Drake in future posts.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Fab 5 Disney Park Figures

I spotted  these figures in Disney's Hollywood Studios this past January. I also saw this set in Disneyland.
They are somewhat unusual, as they are the "Fab 5" as they appear in the parks.

I don't recall seeing this figures anywhere in October, so believe they have just been released in the last couple of months. They retail for $12.95.

Mickey Mouse in his classic outfit.

Here is my wife, Barbie and me with Mickey at the Town Square Theater on Main Street U.S.A. from our trip in January.

Minnie in her Poka Dot dress.

Barbie with Minnie in Disneyland.

Donald is looking pretty slick.

Us with Donald at the Epcot Character Spot a few years ago.

Goofy's looking pretty...well, goofy.

Us with Goofy, also at the  Epcot Character Spot.

And last, but not least, Pluto.

My wife with Pluto at the Garden Grill, in the Land Pavilion, Epcot.

I did buy one. Guess which. Well, you probably didn't need to guess, because you've already spotted
Goofy below!

The figures come with a card featuring an image of Walt Disney World's Cinderella Castle on one side...

... and Disneyland's Sleeping Beauty Castle on the other.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Disney's Magical Express

Disney's Magical Express is a complimentary service offered to Walt Disney World resort guests. It provides transportation to and from the Orlando International Airport, including luggage delivery.

Reserve Disney's Magical Express Transportation when you book online or by calling (407) WDW-MAGIC or (407) 939-6244. Guests under 18 years of age must have a parent or guardian's permission to call.

With this service, guests check their bags at their departing airport, bypass baggage claim upon arrival at Orlando International Airport and board motor coaches to their resort as their bags are transferred to their room by Magical Express.
Because your baggage will be delivered to your room at some point after your arrival, usually a few hours, essential items such as medication should be taken in your carry on bag. I also pack ponchos, and a change of clothes.

Luggage delivery service provided by Disney's Magical Express is available for flights arriving between 5:00 am and 10:00 pm daily. For airport arrivals after 10:00 pm, Guests may collect their luggage at Baggage Claim and transport it with them on the motor coach.

Let's take a look at how it works.

A few weeks before your vacation, an Airport Transportation Booklet with information, transportation vouchers and luggage tags will be mailed to you.
Attach the provided luggage tags prior to leaving home. If for some reason the booklet does not arrive (which is happening more often from what I understand), you can still ride the Magical Express. You will have to pick up your own bags at luggage claim after your flight, however, since without the tags, Disney will not pick up your bags.

If you get to the airport, and forget what to do next, this booklet has very helpful information to get you to the right place, so keep it handy.

Attach the provided luggage tags to the bags you intend on checking in, prior to leaving home.

Upon arrival at Orlando International, take the monorail to Level 3 of the main terminal, then proceed to the Disney Welcome Center. That's right, the rides begin before you even get to Disney World!

You can even shop before you get to the parks!

Magical Express is located on Level One in Terminal B. There are signs in several locations to help you find your way, but if you get turned around, just ask the airport staff for assistance. You will walk a LONG way, as the Magical Express is at the very end of the hallway, past all of the rental car places.

There will be a cast member once you arrive to direct you to the right line.

If you don't have your voucher, or need further assistance, you will be directed to the Welcome Center desk.

If you have your voucher, you will be directed to the appropriate queue.

The wait can seem like forever, especially if you have kids, or are a big kid, like me! But before long, a cast member will ask you to follow them to your motor coach.

You can have them check your carry on luggage in the storage department, or carry on items yourself. In regards to tipping: I usually give a dollar per bag, or, if I carry my luggage on, give a dollar tip to the driver for providing good service.

The bus is very comfortable....

...and there is a great video, which is much beloved by frequent ME users.

In about 45-60 minutes, you will be arriving at the most magical place on earth!

The motor coach usually stops at 2 or 3 resorts, so depending on which you are staying at, it could take an additional 15-20 minutes to get to your final destination. This just builds the excitement!

It is really irritating, however, if you are trying to make an advanced dining reservation. So make sure you allow yourself at least 3-4 hours from your flight's arrival to your dining reservation.

Magical Express is a wonderful FREE service, and I consider it a part of our trip, the appetizer before the feast that is a vacation at the Walt Disney World Resort. It is important to note that this Magical Express is ONLY for people staying ON DISNEY PROPERTY! Don't rent a car or hire a taxi if you're staying in a Disney World resort, use Magical Express and ride for free.

Portions of this article were originally posted on the Tips From the Disney Diva Blog where Nick is a contributing writer.