Our Disney Vacation: Epcot

Ah, Epcot! I love Epcot. There’s so much to see, and so many neat rides and shops. It’s overwhelming and calm at the same time. Ha, like that makes sense.

This time around we weren’t able to stay for an entire day, there just isn’t enough for CT at Epcot. It was actually the park we went to after our two hours at Hollywood Studio, since theres a ferry in between the two. We were able to see a few Disney characters, like Snow White and Aurora (Sleeping Beauty). That was really neat! Plus their two of CT’s favorites! She actually sat down next to Snow White and got comfortable as if she was going to stay there all day!

Epcot has the neatest things to see, you can learn a little or a lot about each country showcased, it all depends on how much time you have. Like I said before too, the shops are awesome! We didn’t buy too much, just some little trinkets at the shop in “Japan” (we wanted a lot in there) and a plush, mounted, bear head in “Canada” (to go with my moose head I bought back in 2008)

Since we were there in October, it was also the International Food and Wine Festival. Its an annual event held in the World Showcase section of Epcot. Last time we were there (before CT), we tried out some of the food carts they have scattered around, but this time, Because of my issues with gluten, we stayed away. Everything smelled so good though! I was able to enjoy amazing mexican food at La Hacienda de San Angel. Pretty much everything on the menu was gluten free!

CT was able to ride two of the rides, without being too short or possibly too scared. She loved the Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros and The Seas With Nemo & Friends. She talked about them for awhile afterwards.

We stayed for the fireworks, because they are so amazing at this park! We didn’t get a great view (I was standing next to a trash can and as you can see, there was a tree in the way) but it was still amazing. CT loved them and kept telling us “thank you for bringing me!”, which is really the best thing to hear from your child when you do something for them!!

IF (in capital letters for a reason) we take another vacation to Disney, we plan on staying in a resort off a monorail for once so we can get to parks like Epcot and Magic Kingdom easier and quicker. We just enjoy them more! This was my third trip to these parks, and everytime I see something new! It all makes me smile!

Just like I said yesterday, I took loads more photos than I could ever share on here, so if you’re interested you can see them all on my Flickr account. I haven’t uploaded all the photos from Magic Kingdom or the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween party yet. Oh and I forgot about all the photos I took with my phone, so I’m up to about 800 photos now… I just love taking pictures of EVERYTHING!


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Our Disney Vacation: Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios

Whew, that was a long post title!!

I’ve been editing photos all week, while also fighting a slight cold we picked up the last day of our trip (I say that because symptoms didn’t show up until Sunday). I LOVE everything Disney, so of course I took over 1000 photos. I like to pare them down, and then color correct and crop the ones I like, which usually only gets me down to about 600 photos. I get attached.

Don’t worry though, I don’t plan on sharing all 600 photos here on the blog, that would be crazy. Be warned though, I will be sharing my super duper favorites from each park. Here goes…

Animal Kingdom is our least favorite park out of the four. It SEEMS hotter than the other parks every time we’ve gone, plus there really wasn’t much CT could do there. Because of the rules that small children had to sit in the middle of the car on the safari (and not be able to see much) that was out, and then all the other rides and such she’d be scared of. There was a really neat nature walk that had birds and gorillas, you can see a few photos above. CT DID enjoy that.

We wouldn’t have even tried Animal Kingdom out at all this trip if it wasn’t for the safari themed character dining I made reservations for. I was last minute making plans, so it was all that was available in CT’s age range. For those who don’t know, Character Dining at Disney Parks is when you have a sit down meal, served or buffet, in a large restaurant where a bunch of Disney characters are walking around. They guarantee each one will come to your table and see your child. They either talk to them, or in the case of characters with masks on, they hug them and then take a photo with your child. Oh and if you’re collecting autographs, like CT was, then they also do that.

CT was fine when we saw Donald outside the restaurant, as seen above , but when we finally sat down she wasn’t as thrilled. She ended up being scared of Goofy (who was super tall) and Mickey (We got a photo of him standing behind us, and it looks as if he’s with us, that was super nice of “him”). Apparently she only wanted to see Daisy. She freaked out about her actually.

All together I think we spent about two hours at Animal Kingdom. Maybe next time we go CT will be tall enough and old enough to enjoy more there. Maybe.

Another park we really didn’t have much to do at was Hollywood Studios. CT is 38″ tall and a lot of the rides there required her to be 40″s. CT loves the muppets, so of course we had to do the Muppets 3D show! Before this trip she hadn’t really experienced 3D in a theatre, or at all maybe. She loved it! She was reaching for all the things coming at you and all. It was really cute.

After that we tried out this little play area based on the movie Honey I Shrunk the Kids. It was really neat looking with all the oversized pieces and all, but as a parent it was the most stressful place ever!!! There were these tunnels that only kids could fit in, and they had lots of forks in them, so you never knew where you kid was going to come out. Plus there were loads of people and it was super loud. I was so afraid we would lose CT somewhere in there, so after about 20 minutes we left. We just couldn’t handle it anymore.

All the other shows and such at Hollywood Studios had an hour or more wait time, and no fast pass, so we ended up leaving after about two hours.

We only had about 5.5 days in our trip to actually go to all the parks and see everything. Before leaving we thought that was plenty of time. We didn’t take into account the weather (which was bad the first two days) or the fact that this time around we had a little person with us, who doesn’t walk fast needs to stop and see everything. It was our first real trip as a family, we needed to be able to actually enjoy it all. That’s why we were being so picky with the parks. Next time, if there is a next time, we’ll add two extra days to our trip, that way we can enjoy more without rushing through it all.

Heads up, I’ll be sharing more vacation photos tomorrow. Oh and if you’re interested in seeing more photos from our trip, I’ve uploaded all of them to my Flickr account, there’s a lot, and I’m nowhere near done.


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Vacation Dresses

I thought it would be super cute to make CT some Disney inspired dresses for our vacation last week. Originally I was going to just design some fabric through Spoonflower, but I had some issues finding a pattern I liked, and then I didn’t have enough time to wait for the fabric.

I tried out several patterns before I was happy with the outcome. The first few were commercial patterns I bought at Joanns. They never quite fit CT right, and the sizes were all wonky. Very disappointing, and such a waste of my time. In the end I found one on Etsy by Ruby Jeans Closet. The pattern is called the Peony Flower Girl Dress, and is absolutely perfect for simple princess dresses. The instructions were super easy to understand, you don’t need any hard to find supplies and the sizes are perfect! I also like the pattern because it’s easy to change up a bit, so I can make each dress a little different to fit whatever theme I want. One pattern can yield so many different dresses. I was only able to finish four dresses before our trip, but I have plans for so many more once things die down.

The first dress I was able to finish was a Minnie Mouse inspired dress. My original plan was to make it red and white polka dotted, but I remembered last minute that Minnie wears PINK on the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, and CT knows her from that show. Luckily Joann’s has the same exact fabric in pink! I may go back and get the red and make a second dress, because it’s just too cute on her.

The only thing I changed on the pattern to make this dress was the waistband. In the instructions you’re supposed to put the band on the inside of the dress to hold the elastic, I put it on the outside to add a little detail. The next one I make I’m also going to put a little lace around the arm hole, just beacuse.

Oh and funny thing, CT is doing a robot dance in the first photo, It’s really funny and cute in person.

The second dress is Marvel Comics themed. This dress kinda happened by accident. While I was picking out the fabric for the rest of the dresses, my husband was wandering the store with CT. He found this fabric and asked me what we could make with it. I was still in “lets make dresses” mode, so I said I’d make CT a dress out of it. Since Disney is now associated with Marvel, I thought why not make it for the trip! I didn’t know what to call it, but by the end of the trip I said CT was dressed up as a comic book store. Ha, that totally confused people.

I did change the pattern a bit more for this dress. I cut the pattern on the line meant as a waistband guide, so that I could use two different fabrics (I thought an entire dress made out of this would be a bit much) I also added some of the patterned fabric to the sleeves as casing for the elastic. I think it added a nice little touch to the dress.

The third dress is actually my favorite one, and was a lot of fun to make. It’s a Snow White inspired dress, and was the dress CT wore as her actual costume for the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party at Disney World. It’s super lightweight and very flowy, great for spinning apparently. A bunch of people called CT Snow White throughout the day, and after awhile she started to love that (I think she was a bit confused at first).

So the changes to this dress are very similar to the changes on the Marvel dress. I used the waistband guideline as the cutline again. I also used a different colored fabric for the sleeves, which I appliqued the red stripes on myself since I couldn’t find the right material in stores. I also added white binding around the sleeves as the elastic casing. Oh and I added the little red bow. I felt very good after making this specific dress and hope I can make all the princesses for her eventually.

The last dress! This dress is Alice in Wonderland inspired, though we were also told that it looked like Belle before she got that pretty yellow ballgown. Two costumes in one! CT really enjoyed wearing this one and everyone either called her Alice or asked if she’d met Alice yet (which she had, while wearing the Minnie dress).

This dress seriously took me the longest to make. It had a bit more details, had to be more precise and I had to free hand the apron pieces. I basically just winged it all! Ha! The way I changed the pattern on this one was kinda like the Minnie Mouse dress. I placed the elastic casing on the outside of the dress again, but this time I placed the apron pieces underneath the casing to make it look like all one piece. Because of the gathering around the neck, the apron pieces were only attached at the waist, their loose everywhere else. That way it laid flat. I didn’t attach the straps until I tried the entire thing on CT, that way I knew exactly how long to make them. It was a bit more work, but I’m beyond happy with the outcome. If I ever do it again, I’ll add some white casing to the armholes and some ruffles on the apron.

These dresses took me an entire week to make, but I’m happy I made them all. I think having themed dresses just added that little touch to our trip that we’ll remember for years to come!

Edit: I forgot the best part!!!… each dress cost me on average about $6 to make, and If I had a 50% off coupon for Joanns instead of the 30% off one I used, they would cost even less. 

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Collections: Disney

Today I’m sharing with you another one of my larger collections. I have a thing for all stuff Disney. Disney shows, Disney parks, Disney books and especially Disney memorabilia. I don’t know exactly when this all started, but I’m assuming I was young, and I bet commercials had something to do with it.

I remember the first time I really became interested in the inner workings of Disney, not just the products, was after reading one of the many biographies of Walt Disney. I was 13, so I don’t remember exactly which one it was, but I do remember loving it! I read it after the Kurt Cobain biography, and my “punk” self thought Disney was WAY more interesting. HA!

I had to know more, so I went to the library and checked out two more of his biographies. I even did a report on him in middle school, I talked in front of the class and all! I’m really shy, so that’s a big deal for me. This was also around the time that I started to REALLY want to go to Disney World! I wanted to see everything this guy had built. It wasn’t great timing, my youngest sister was a baby, my family was going through some pretty crazy times and it just wasn’t looking like it would ever happen. I understood. I figured I’d just go when I got older.

Flash forward a decade or so… my Disney obsession had died down a bit. I was in LA with Heidi and Katie vending at one of the holiday Felt Club shows. One of the traditions with the local crafters was to visit one of the many amusement parks in their area. This time around they decided on Disneyland!! I was excited! I FINALLY got to visit a Disney park. I was very lucky too, because one of the girls boyfriend was a tour guide, and she had picked up on a lot. I got to hear a bunch about each and every ride. I think I may have wandered off a few (a bunch of) times. I feel bad now about making the group worry. I was like a kid in a candy store, I couldn’t help it!!

That trip started my obsession back up. It probably didn’t help that cable tv made it really easy to access NON STOP documentaries on Disney and their parks. If its about Disney, I’ll watch it! It was a few more years before I finally made it to Disney World. My sister in law had her wedding there! It was awesome. The trip made me so happy that my husband took us back later in the year for our one year wedding anniversary! Oh and to top off that year I was a vendor at another Felt Club, so we figured were already in the area why not go to Disneyland?

Three Disney trips in one year? My 13 year old self would have been SO jealous!!!

I became pregnant with CT pretty soon after, and we haven’t had a proper vacation since. Like I said last week, were headed back to Disney World in the Fall. I bet after reading this you can imagine just how excited I am!

As you can see from my collection, I prefer the Mickey Mouse figurines or anything that has to do with the parks! I collect both new and old Disney memorabilia. I like the bold, and colorful styled pieces. A bunch of the new pieces are from my four trips, I go crazy in the gift shops! I’m already saving up for the Fall trip. I have my eye on the new Vinylmation series. Especially this one. I’ve heard that there are even park exclusive pieces?!?! Ooooooooh!!! Haha!

We also have many pieces scattered throughout the house that are Disney, half belonging to CT. I just didn’t want to post a few dozen photos!! I chose my most favorite pieces to share today.

I did not expect this post to be sooo long and informative, but I just couldn’t help it!! Ha. Do any of you get this way about anything? Your favorite show? Your favorite band?

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Thrift Finds: July 15th thru July 26th

Our thrifting and antiquing trips haven’t been happening as much as they use to. It’s just too darn hot out, and most places don’t have efficient air conditioning!

Even with the heat, I have found some neat things during our short trips.

I have been searching high and low for a Plasticville model set that was ready for assembly for months now. It all started with that little yellow house I bought back in April. I found a cute little diner at my local hobby shop that I picked up, but I really wanted a house! I just love building houses. I found this one at a local shop for $5! They had a bunch. The rest were $20 or more, and the assembled ones were even more. If I really love assembling this set, I MAY go back for more. Building things is very therapeutic for me, and $20 is cheaper than a therapy session, right?

Oh and if your interested in little plastic houses too, check out my Pinterest board I started!

Of course it wasn’t a successful week, unless I found some Disney items! This time around I found another plastic Mickey and a Donald Duck to match my red Mickey from last time! My husband found me this awesome Small World 7″ record with read along story book insert. I’ve looked through every page and can not find the illustrator, but they are seriously awesome looking! Were planning a Disney trip for the fall, so weve been getting CT all excited about the rides and such, so things like this def help!!

I’m planning on showing all of my Disney memorabilia next week as part of my collection series, so if your interested please check it out!

The little blue guy was a funny find, it’s a rubber version of “Sulley” from Monsters Inc. The funny part about him is hes SKINNY! he’s not supposed to be skinny, he’s a big chubby monster. It was so weird we had to bring it home.

Oh and the random Brunswick soda bottle? We have been accidentally collecting soda bottles, and thought this one was neat since we live in Brunswick, MD. Simple.

As with the Disney stuff, I can’t seem to leave a place without at least one travel plate. This time I couldn’t seem to leave without TEN travel plates! They were mostly theme park and tropical island themed this time around, and not a single one cost more than $2!

I finally found a place to put all of them in the house! Once I’m done hanging ALL of the plates, I’ll make sure to share it here!!

Do you have weird compulsions to buy certain things at thrift shops? I’d love to know I;m not alone.

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