Save 20% on Premium Rooms at Disneyland Resort Hotel

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Good Morning everyone! I just got an email about there being a discount on Disneyland Resort Hotels! It’s 20% off Premium Rooms on some Sunday-Thursday nights from October 26th through December 18th if you book by November 19th. There are some blackout days:

Blockout dates of 10/31/14, 11/1/14, 11/7/14,11/8/14, 11/13/14 through 11/16/14 and 11/21/14 through 12/13/14 apply.

Here is the fine print from my email:

20% savings available on Premium, Deluxe and Woods/Garden/Courtyard rooms; select Concierge rooms; and Paradise, Artisan and Regal suites. Ask about savings in other room types. Not valid on previously booked rooms. Advance reservations required. Subject to availability as the number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited. Excludes applicable fees and taxes. Limit two (2) rooms per reservation and five (5) people maximum per room. Not valid in combination with any other hotel discounts or offers. Subject to restrictions and change without notice. Separate Theme Park admission required to enjoy the Parks.

The hotels on Disneyland properties don’t have specials too often. Usually you can get a discount if you are an Annual Passholder or military discount. But for the rest of us this is a very good deal! This would be the perfect time to check out Disneyland’s Mickey’s Halloween Party! If you’re interested and need some help of course I would be happy to be of service! Just go to my Travel Website to get a free quote! :)

 

I Am Back Baby!

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Oh yeah, I am starting to get back to my old self! Today was James’ at home day for school. So I decided that at lunch we were going for a walk! I haven’t really done anything since my accident except the 5K. I have been so overwhelmed with everything going on in my life plus I still am having back issues. But I am tired of feeling blah. So I decided that I would start off super slow. Just walk. I am not going to worry about time or distance. I am just going to go for me. As well as the fact that James really doesn’t get a P.E. at school, I thought it was a good way to get him out and spend some quality time with him.

We had a great time. We saw I don’t know how many lizards on our walk to the park. Plus a few rabbits and a squirrel. I hardly ever see squirrels around here! It was perfect weather! Overcast, a little cool with a nice breeze. I wore my new tennis shoes and they worked out great! We walked about 2.1 miles. It wasn’t a slow walk but enough that I was sweating when we got home. I felt so much better when we got back! Like I’m getting out of my funk. It’s amazing what a little fresh air and movement can do for your soul. And the best part, at dinner tonight when we were going around saying what the best part of our day was James said it was our walk together. :) Coming from a too cool 11 year old, I will take it!

So I will start back up my weekly goals probably starting next Monday. It will be walking at first. I’m doing the Galloway Method to get back into it. If you’re a new runner or wanting to get back in it I would love it if you joined me! It’s always easier to do it with a buddy!

Big News In Our Household!

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I am so excited to tell you all that my husband and I have opened up our own Authorized Disney Vacation Planner travel agency! I have been working very hard to take the classes Disney requires for you to graduate their College of Knowledge! I debated whether or not to say something on the blog for a few reasons. First, I would like to keep the blog separate from the business. Second, I don’t want you all to feel like you have to use our services or be inundated with “come use us!” type of things. I want you all to come here and enjoy my posts!

But now I have a bit more insight to Disney, like getting the info about Frozen coming to Epcot. So both websites will sometimes intertwine and I can tell you about new things! I would be happy to of course book your trips to any Disney destination as well as Universal Studios, Legoland, cruises and anywhere in between! I also have been training and learning about them as well! I will include the link to our travel website so you can see what we offer. Just so you know, if you book with our agency it is FREE to use us! I may sometimes remind you all at the end of a post that we can help you book your trip, but I won’t advertise our travel agency much more than that. :) I just love giving tips to my favorite places in the world and hope they are beneficial to you!

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I also have a Facebook Page dedicated to the agency. If you’d like to have information about discounts to Disney and other places please feel free to like the page! I do post daily either fun things or promotions that I find out about :) Enchanted Minnie Travel on Facebook

I know some of you already know this exciting news and I appreciate your support! I just wanted to let everyone know why sometimes I’ll know things before they happen or why I’m talking about the agency!

Big News Coming to Walt Disney World!

Well, in a post I did a few weeks ago I hinted that there was a rumor our beloved Maelstrom was being retired. My family loved this ride! I told you how trolls hold a special place in our hearts!

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But the way that Disney stays fresh and exciting is with new ideas! They have officially announced that on October 5, 2014 Maelstrom will be closing. They will begin to transform this space into Arendelle where you will be immersed in all of the beloved moments from the movie and music of Frozen. The Norway Pavilion will also receive the royal treatment where you can meet Elsa and Anna! This will be a wonderful way to enhance the already beautiful Norway location in Epcot. This is set to begin after the closing of Maelstrom and is planned to be complete in early 2016. The Norway Pavilion will be open during the construction.

norway pavWith the winter season fast approaching Disney has also found a way to include our favorite Frozen characters at Magic Kingdom as well! Anna, Elsa, Olaf and Kristoff will be joining the “Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmas Time” parade. As well as a few subjects from the kingdom ice skating around plus a few more surprises! This parade can be enjoyed during the special ticket event “Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.

Starting on November 5, 2014  each evening Queen Elsa will use her magical powers to transform her friend Cinderella’s castle into a beautiful glimmering ice palace! Of course she couldn’t do it without her sister by her side!

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Don’t think that Hollywood Studios isn’t left out of the fun either! It’s not too late to catch Frozen Summer Fun LIVE! Two elements of this amazing event are set to continue; “For The First Time In Forever: A Frozen Sing A Long Celebration” can be seen in the Premiere Theater on Streets of America. Don’t forget there is a Fastpass+ service for this now too! Yoo Hoo, also “Wandering Oaken’s Trading Post” and “Frozen Funland” will be able to be found at Streets of America near the Studio Backlot Tour at the end of September! Here you can find plenty of Frozen merchandise as well as a snowy wonderland, play area and of course cupcakes and other yummy treats!

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It looks like the only park that isn’t getting Frozen love is Animal Kingdom! Who knows, maybe they’re working on an area for winter land animals, like maybe some of Sven’s friends! Hope they like carrots! That would be awesome!

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So there is the big news coming from Disney! Are you planning on experiencing the Frozen festivities?

 

We Will Never Forget

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How can it already have been 13 years since that fateful day? On one hand it is still fresh in our minds. On the other, it feels like a lifetime ago. So much has changed in our world. It didn’t matter which state you called home or what team you cheered for, we all came together as one.

I’m sure we all remember where we were on that tragic day when our lives changed forever. I was 21 years old and working at a bank as a teller. My husband’s best friend was staying with us at the time and he was in the military. As I was getting ready for work he came into the living room and turned on the news. He had just received word from his commander to report for duty immediately. He knew it was no accident. As I headed into work it started off as a day I’ll never forget. The t.v. in the lobby was on the news and although I couldn’t see the television screen I could hear the sirens and screams as the reporters were trying to find out information and the words to explain as this heinous act unfolded. We had the phone ringing off the hook with customers concerned about if we would have their money safe or if they should come in and withdrawal their funds. The confusion and shock as we began to find out small bits of info. We waited with baited breath to hear broadcaster’s basically say the same thing over and over because we might just get a new piece of information to explain why.

My husband worked for a cell phone company at the time. He worked at a kiosk in the local mall and most stores shut down for the day. But since one major store stayed open his corporate office thought he should too. This turned out to be a good thing since he had a man come to him from out of town. He had family in New York and had been frantically trying to get a hold of them. He needed a cell phone to try to reach them. Brandon was able to figure something out and the man was able to finally find out all of his family was okay.

But as we know almost 3,000 families weren’t so lucky. Whether they had loved ones in the towers, on the planes or in the Pentagon. This day will never be the same. We have heard many of the brave stories of 1st responders doing what came as second nature to them, putting themselves last to aid their fellow man. We’ve also heard of those who were everyday people just like you and me finding the strength to overcome their fear and run back into the building or take over the plane. How many of us have used the phrase “Let’s Roll” thinking of Todd Beamer? How many of us have wondered if we were the ones faced with the knowledge of our time on Earth was coming to an end would we have the bravery to do what was needed?

The weeks and months afterwords were a flood of togetherness and unity. We helped our fellow Americans with either kind words, prayers, shelter, food, or just to sit and cry with a stranger. This shows what we are made of as a country. When one of our own needs help we all as a nation step up. We have shown this time and time again when we have been faced with other tragedies either by the hands of man or by Mother Nature.

Our country will never be the same. My children will never know what life was like before 9/11. Our lives are divided into before that day and after. I remember trying to explain to my boys exactly what happened that day when it was the 10 year anniversary. How do you explain to 8 year olds and a 5 year old that the world isn’t exactly black and white? That there are good people and bad people in this world? I chose to focus on those good people who were brave and selfless. Those who stayed on the phone line with the brave souls on the plane to comfort them and pray with them in their final moments. Or those firemen and police officers that weren’t even on shift that left their safe warm homes to risk their lives to help others. In tragedy and despair comes triumph and resilience.  And even though our hearts and souls were broken that day we have come out stronger. Just like a broken bone healing over the crack we are unyielding and mighty.

I know that our country’s families hearts and prayers are with those who lost a loved one on September 11, 2001. We have cried for you. We have prayed for you.  Even as I write this I can’t help but to have the tears fall for those I have never met. It doesn’t matter what your race is, what your political party is, or which God you pray to. All that matters is even though we are not a biologic family we are a family, one nation. We will never forget.

Where were you on this day 13 years ago?

Army Cake

So I am one of those moms, you know that make their kids’ birthday cakes every year. At first I was really into it! One year I made 2 two tiered cakes covered in fondant for my twins birthday. It was pretty cool, Lego Star Wars themed, one was black with the bad guys and the other was white with the good guys. But as I was rolling out the fondant I was cursing cakes in general and vowing never to bake again! (I didn’t take a class how to do it, dumb me just winged it!)

Then I got smart and figured out how to make simpler cakes that still looked pretty awesome! The cake I’m showing you is the one that Riley has requested when he turned 6 and 7. He is all boy and totally into army. So I went to the Dollar Store and picked up some “Army Guys” and then I got in his toy box and found some vehicles that kind of matched. You guys, this cake was super easy and people thought I bought it at a store! I made it just from a box mix and doctored it up a bit with a few teaspoons of vanilla and chocolate chips. Do it however you want!

army cake

Ingredients:

2 9×13 cake pans greased, floured and parchment paper in bottom

2 boxes of cake mix (you can make your own if you want)

of course the ingredients needed to make your cake (eggs, oil, water,etc..) follow directions on box

Milk Chocolate frosting (easier to color “camo-ish” than white frosting)

Wiltons “Color Mist” in Green and Black

1 package of oreo cookies

decorations, army guys, etc…

Bake cakes according to directions. Let cool, I normally will do it the night before and stick them in the freezer. Then I put a small smear of frosting on cake board and stick the 1st layer of cake on top. This helps hold the cake on the board so it doesn’t slide off. Then I put parchment paper under and around the cake. This helps protect the cake board from the frosting and color mist. I put the “crumb” layer on and include the top of the cake. (Crumb layer is just a thin layer of frosting that will hold in the little crumbs so when you put the actual frosting layer it won’t be spotted with cake crumbs:) )

Then I put the top cake layer on and do that crumb layer. Let it sit for about 20 minutes to harden and set. Then you put on the actual frosting layers all over the cake! It’s ok if it’s messy and not perfect. You want it to look like the battlefield!

Then I start to use the color mist, this is what the cans look like:

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Make sure you open windows because it can get kind of stuffy with all of the mist in the air! You’re trying to make it look camo looking on the frosting. I usually start off light then go heavier to get the look I want. Again, it doesn’t have to be perfect in fact you want it too look un-patterned. Kind of the point of camo!

Then I put about 1 section of Oreo’s in the blender and blend it fine until it looks like dirt sometimes I use more but start off with just that. I make a little road on top of the cake, wide enough to put a toy car on. You can make it diagonal or long ways, however you want. Then I take off the parchment on the bottom that was protecting the board. Here is where I hide the bottom edge and gently push in some Oreo dirt make a little border.

Then I arrange the army guys in a little scene, put the toy car on my dirt road and boom, done! You will be the coolest mom on the block! I have also added a little fence and any other little plastic army toys I have found in the toy box. Best thing is once the cakes eaten you just wash them off and your kid can still play with them. I think it probably cost me less then $15 to make this cake. It is super easy and pretty cheap!

What do you think? Have you made a easy birthday cake before?

 

Currently…

I read Heather’s blog today and she wrote about what she is currently doing! I like it! So I am going to borrow her idea today! It’s a great way for us to get to know each other a bit better :) If you have a blog and would like to do it as well go for it!

CURRENTLY WATCHING: Right now the news. Nothing to exciting! I’m just waiting for fall tv to come back on! I love Grey’s Anatomy, Once Upon A Time and Sleepy Hollow. Plus a few others, but those are my main must sees.

CURRENTLY LISTENING TO: Well the radio. I don’t have my awesome van still that I could plug in my phone and do Pandora. So it’s usually on the country station or pop. My kids love Bruno Mars, Aerosmith, Queen, Pharrell Williams, etc.. Quite a wide variety of taste!

CURRENTLY THINKING ABOUT: Mostly my van and car accident. It’s been over a month and still no van. We are no where near closer to where we were when the accident happened. The police report wasn’t written correctly plus some other things are really starting to wear on my patience. I’m over this whole situation already!!!!!! All I can say is thank goodness for family!

CURRENTLY TRYING TO FIGURE OUT: Well, still the van! It has taken over my life people! And I’m trying to figure out how to drive on the darn freeway again without having a nervous breakdown! I drove down the frontage road because I was anxious to drive home on the freeway today! I wonder if I could just get a chauffeur to drive me around town while I’m in the backseat with a blindfold on so I couldn’t see haha!

CURRENTLY LOOKING FORWARD TOO: Being home with the kids. The state fair starts this weekend so I’m deciding if we should go! We don’t do the rides, I take them to see the animals and the cultural things. Plus, really looking forward to bedtime. I am exhausted!

CURRENTLY READING:Nothing too exciting. I haven’t had time to read a good book in awhile. I’m such a bookworm that once I get into it I can’t stop till I finish! But I am reading mostly travel agency things, my husband and I just opened up our own agency so getting everything organized.

CURRENTLY MAKING ME HAPPY: Oh my new running shoes! I can’t run quite yet but I can start to walk and get back into it I hope! I love my new shoes!!! And yes, I have my awesome Sweat Pink shoelaces in them :)

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What makes you happy currently? You can answer in the comments or write about it in your blog! I want to read it so please let me know if you write about your life currently!

Sweat Pink Shoelaces Giveaway!

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I am so excited to share with you I have been accepted as a Sweat Pink Ambassador! I love the company’s philosophy;

We believe that kicking ass is best done in pretty shoes. We’ve learned that real women sweat, and sweat hard. We know that assertiveness, strength, and ambition are the ultimate feminine qualities. We concede that sometimes it takes hours to get ready, but we’re also no strangers to just rolling out of bed and going. We’re convinced that we run faster in pink shoelaces. We believe in pushing ourselves, and we believe in giving ourselves a break, too. We’re all about the rush of endorphins and the thrill of the challenge. We’re all for looking great and feeling even better. We’re committed to finding our best fit, and making it stick. We Sweat Pink.”

They know that as women we aren’t perfect but that doesn’t stop us from trying our best! It has been such a welcoming group of women and I can’t wait to connect with more of them! It is always helpful to surround yourself with positive people who will encourage you to do your best but also be there to help pick you back up when you fall. I will work very hard to represent this amazing company to the best of my ability by supporting and encouraging all of you! One way I would love to do that is do have a giveaway for ya’ll!

Fit Approach’s signature item is the pink shoelaces! Because they know they make you work harder and run faster! I will be giving away 3 pair of the #sweat pink laces!


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There is also other Sweat Pink merchandise in the company store if you’d like to get yourself something like a pink yoga mat or Sweat Pink tank top. You can never have too much pink!

*I have included links in this post and was given the items for the giveaway

****Anna Keene and Megan Hunn are my winners! Please email me your address at enchanteddesertminnie@gmail.com!*******
a Rafflecopter giveaway

New Balance 30 Runs in 30 Days Sweepstakes

So for all of my fellow newbie runners or experienced runners we all know that a good pair of shoes is the most important thing in this sport! New Balance has a super easy sweepstakes going on right now that I’d like to share with you! Just fill out your info and be entered to win a pair of 880v4 New Balance shoes! There will be 5 winners! Good Luck everyone!

Click Here To Enter

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8 Basic Tips to Make Your Life Easier Visiting Walt Disney World with Little Ones

I am so excited that my awesome friend Amanda (Mandi) Middleton agreed to do a guest post for me today! I know how to travel with the older kiddos but she has younger ones, twin boys also! So she knows how to travel with babies and toddlers! She is clearly Super Mom because you can find her at her blogs A Little Pixie Dust Travel and Faith and Pixie Dust!

8 Basic Tips to Make Your Life Easier Visiting Walt Disney World with Little Ones

I’m Mandi and I have three kids, including a set of twins. We have been taking our kids to Walt Disney World since they were itty bitty. We have the luxury of living close to Walt Disney World, so we try to go often. I have learned a lot of things since going with my three little ones. A trip to Disney World is definitely different than going with a bunch of adults, there are melt downs (not always done by the kids, though),diaper changes and naps just to name a few. Here are a few of my tips and tricks while going to Walt Disney World with toddlers and preschoolers!

8. Go Slow!

I know, I know, I know, you paid all of this money, you are determined that you are going to do everything! Take it from me, going with babies and preschoolers to WDW is hard. Not just the walking but, the strollers, the keeping up with kids, diaper changes, etc. It’s hard work! Don’t wear yourself out any more than you have to. I promise if you push yourself or the kids too hard, YOU will be the one to suffer. (That’s usually where my meltdown comes in.)

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7. Plan

Map out the parks, make sure you know where you want to go. Have a plan for each day. I say this but, try not to plan out the day minute by minute. I promise just when you think all is well with your schedule someone will poop and you will have to change a diaper. Or someone will be hungry or someone will have a melt down! Get my drift? It won’t be perfect by far! You will get off schedule but, just having a general plan in mind always helps.


6. Rent a Stroller

I love renting strollers! In our case it takes up too much room in the car. So if you don’t want to lug a stroller on the plane or in the car, rent one, it will be well worth your money! Honestly, it’s a very reasonable price too! My husband and I love renting from Magic Strollers (http://www.magicstrollers.com). They are super professional and they will deliver the stroller right to your resort. Every stroller we have rented has been very clean and their service is great. When you are done with your stroller you leave it at the concierge desk of your resort and Voila, you are done! They will pick it up from there!

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5. Take Snacks

Even if you are on the dining plan, take snacks! You never know when someone will be hungry. I always have Garden Grocer (https://www.gardengrocer.com) deliver granola bars, applesauce pouches and bananas to our resort. They will deliver it right to your resort but make sure you order online about a week or two in advance to insure a delivery for your day of arrival!

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4. Utilize the Baby Care Centers

Oh, the Baby Care Centers will be your friends! I utilize them all of the time! As long as you have a child in diapers, use them, they are there for you! The Baby Care Centers (https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/guest-services/baby-care-centers/) are equipped with air conditioning (which is fabulous on those hot Florida days), changing tables, nursing rooms and even a place for your child to sit and snack while watching a Disney movie, of course. There is one in every park! Map out where each one is before you go.


3. Be Prepared for Rain

You are not in Kansas anymore, Dorothy! Yes, you are in Florida now! Depending on when you go to Walt Disney World, it rains a lot. My husband and I have been known to take trash bags to cover up our strollers or you can use a stroller cover. Believe me you don’t want your stroller wet or the stuff in it wet!  We also stock up on rain ponchos at the Dollar Store, they almost always get used. Dollar Store ponchos do not take up a lot of room in your bag and you can throw them away when you are done with them. We try to stay away from umbrellas, that’s just our preference, they seem to weigh us down.

rain ponchos


2. Research the Dining Plan Before You Go

My husband and I are huge fans of the dining plan but, please research before you go. If you have food allergies Disney does a great job accommodating and helping in any way they can. Learn how your Dining Plan works and how much each person is allowed to eat each day!


1. Take a Great Attitude

Mamas and Daddies, I know you spent a lot of money to go on this trip and you want it to be perfect! I get it, I do! But…..wait for it……..it’s not going to be perfect. Your kids are going to have melt downs. You are going to have melt downs! You are going to get off schedule. The baby is going to poop right when you are about to get on Peter Pan’s Flight. It’s okay I promise! The memories you are making are going to be priceless with and without the unwelcome additions to your schedule. Chris and I have realized, when we chill out and go with the flow we have a better Disney trip, regardless of how many things went wrong. Usually the things that went wrong end up being the highlights of our trips and the most memorable!

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There you have it, 8 basic tips to make your life easier while visiting Walt Disney World with little ones! Hope this list helps and will get you well on your way to your magical vacation with your littles ones!

Thanks for having me today!

~Mandi~

Thank you so much Mandi! You are amazing! I know that these tips will help those who are apprehensive about taking their young children. Besides her 2 blogs you can also find her at:

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