Disney Tips and Tricks

Good morning!  It’s Friday today!  It’s a wonderful day before a wonderful weekend!  Is everyone ready??

Well for this post, we are talking even more Disney.  We are definitely Disney fans and we are currently planning a trip to Disneyland yet again.  So as part of this planning, I’ve decided to share our top 10 tips and tricks for Disneyland.  We hope that they are super helpful for you and can help you to have a better trip when you decided to go.

But!  Before we get started!  Don’t forget that we are doing a giveaway for a canvas from Canvas Factory!  The giveaway is on our last post so click here to enter for a chance to win.  The giveaway will be open until July 24th so don’t forget to enter!

1. MaxPass

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OMG this thing is amazing!  If you have not heard of this, you are missing out.  For $15 you can get Fastpasses on your phone through the Disney App and you can download the photos from the rides and photographers.  How cool is that?  You know what else?  You can get Fastpasses every hour and a half instead of every two hours!  It is so useful when you are trying to plan out your day and figure out which rides would be best for you and your crew to get on next.  Here is one of the many photos that we downloaded from the photographers.

2. Have the Disneyland App on your phone

The Disneyland App will be your epicenter for your entire trip.  This app will not only house your MaxPass, but it will show you wait times for rides, where characters will be, show times, parade times, and you can make reservations for restaurants.  You can also directly download your photos from the MaxPass right onto your phone from the app.  It is so convenient for your Disneyland trip and you will always be in the know!

3. Start planning early

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When you have young kids, this is possibly the best thing to do for your trip.  Plan plan plan!  Know when your parades are going to be and when and what shows are happening.  This way you can plan your trip through the park better and you aren’t criss crossing the park to try to make all of shows.  You can plan your day out weeks in advance.  It is also helpful to see when there are going to be events happening.  Wouldn’t it be terrible if you got to Disneyland and found out they were closing early because of Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party?  The schedule for when Disneyland opens and closes usually pops up about 2 months in advance.  So make sure you check their calendar before booking your tickets!

4. Get there as early as possible and take photos earlier in the day

60th Anniversary Disneyland

When my family goes to Disneyland, we normally leave our house at about 5 am and reach Disneyland around 8 or 8:30.  We like to be there when it opens!  Now…we are all adults who can usually function perfectly through the day when we leave that early.  But if you have kids it doesn’t work as well.  So I would recommend getting a hotel the night before but plan on getting to Disneyland or California Adventures as soon as it opens.  That way you can maximize your time in the parks.  Also, get your pictures early.  If you take your photos early in the day you will look fresher and nicer than if you took a photo at midnight!

5. Bring your own snacks, water, ponchos, emergency kit, and phone charger

Splash Mountain Photo Disneyland

Disneyland still allows you to bring in your own water and snacks, so feel free to stuff your backpack full of your favorite snack to enjoy in the park!  But, if you do forget your favorite water bottle at home, all of the restaurants will give you free water if you ask.  And if you ask for a large water, they still give it to you at no charge!  Don’t forget your ponchos as well, just in case you have that one person in your party who hates walking around soaking wet (cough cough me cough cough).  You can always bring your own rain ponchos to wear on Splash Mountain and Grizzly River Run, that way you don’t have to buy the really expensive ones.  Another thing we do is bring our own emergency kit of medicine, Band aids, Mentos, cough drops, and a few other things.  You can obviously have your own stuff but it is super helpful in the parks to not have to go running around with a giant blister and no Band aid to go with it.  And finally, don’t forget your phone charger.  Or do and rent one in the park.  You can rent a phone charger that comes with both an iPhone and Android charger.  And the best part?  When it runs out of battery, you can return it and get a new one at no charge!  That’s right.  Pay once and use it for your whole trip.

6. Use the lockers

I cannot express this enough.  USE THE LOCKERS!  We always use them to put our extra shoes, jackets, souvenirs, etc. in it.  It’s around $10 to rent a locker that you can use the entire day in the park.  We get one almost every time we go into Disneyland and it has saved our lives multiple times.  Thank goodness!

7. Make reservations for the restaurants

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Did you know that you can make a reservation at the restaurants?  Any of the sit down restaurants you can make a reservation for a table.  But, be warned.  For our next trip to Disneyland we had to book our restaurants 2 weeks in advance.  And we had only a few choices of when we could book ourselves in.  If you want to make sure you get that 12 pm lunch reservation at Carnation Cafe, make sure you book it as soon as possible.  Do not delay!

8. Families with younger kids, take time to rest

Tiki Room Disneyland

When my sister and I were younger, my parents would take us back to the hotel for a couple hours to take a nap and rest.  This is so important for younger kids to make sure they aren’t over exhausted.  Try to take time out of your day to go back to the hotel, or find a really quiet place to sit down and just rest.  A couple places we recommend are the infant rooms (there are some in both Disneyland and California Adventures, just ask a Cast Member or check your map), the bottom story of Hungry Bear Cafe, the Tiki Room and Pacific Wharf.  Now, Pacific Wharf can be busy when it’s around meal times, but there is a small corner you can sit in that is much quieter.  Another option is riding the train or the monorail for a while.  They are nice and relaxing and they may even put some young kids to sleep!

9. Get a close Hotel with Breakfast and a Shuttle

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This tip is a very good tip I promise.  If you can find a hotel at a decent price that has both a shuttle and breakfast, you are set.  That’s one less meal that you have to buy and you don’t have to drive to the park and deal with the parking garage.  Some of the hotels will even let you arrive early, park you car, take the shuttle to Disneyland, and then check in after you finish in Disneyland.  It is so much more convenient and so much more helpful when it comes to enjoying your day at the park.

10. Bring your own Autograph Book and get Smashed Pennies

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If you are trying to go to Disneyland on a budget, I highly highly recommend doing this step.  Souvenirs can be so expensive in the parks and then if you buy clothes, they may not fit your kids when they get older.  When my sister and I were younger we would bring our own autograph books for the characters to sign.  Mom would usually buy a notebook at the Dollar Tree and turn it into a signature book for the characters.  We also got (and still get) smashed pennies.  They cost 51 cents!  All you need is 2 quarters and a shiny penny and BOOM!  You have a souvenir.  Plus, there are a few different stations around the parks that you can make your smashed pennies and there many different designs for you to choose from.  It’s much cheaper and easier souvenirs that will last longer than some clothes!

11. Follow Disney Instagramers

This is a bonus tip!  Mom and I follow a couple Disney Instagram accounts and they are so helpful!  Some of them give the best tips and tricks and help to make your trip run super smoothly.  Our favorite is @disneylandtourguide.  She gives us so much information every day that has helped us make our trips more memorable.  Plus, she is posting information that even us seasoned Disneylanders didn’t know!  I would definitely go give her a follow to get all of the information you could want and need!  @disneylandinsiders is another account that we enjoy.  Even though they don’t necessarily give tips and tricks, they are a great family who is ALWAYS in Disneyland and can give you some helpful information.  @thebudgetmouse is an account that mostly gives info for Disneyworld, but some of the tips and tricks she gives are good for either park.  And @disneyeatz will help you find out what food you want to eat in the park.  You won’t go hungry in Disneyland if you follow this account!

And that’s it!  I hope you have found these helpful and are able to use some of them for your next trip to Disneyland!

Sparkle

 

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Disney Wall Inspiration

Hello!  How is everyone doing?  I hope you are all doing well and are ready for the weekend, because I know I am!

So this week’s post is because I am depressed because I am not in Disneyland.  Crazy…I know… but I am working on trying to help my Disney depression by building a gallery wall.  In my hallway.  So!  I needed some inspiration and decided to share my inspiration with all of you!  Now, some of these things were too cool not to share, but they unfortunately don’t have any links.  So enjoy!

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Mickey Mouse String Art from Yoho Disney

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Minnie Ears Stair Display

Steamboat Willie

Steamboat Willie Pin Board

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Disney Wall from @vickiethomp5on on Instagram

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Photo Castle

Ears Wall

Minnie Ears Framed from @pinsndisney on Instagram

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UP Inspired Smashed Penny Picture

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Disney Pin Shadow Boxes from Savoring the Good

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Disney Gallery Wall from @jadedaisy on Instagram

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Disney Ride Signs

Sparkle

Minnie Mouse Wooden Ornament

I posted this earlier this year, but since we just went to Disneyland for Christmas, I decided it was appropriate to post again! Merry Christmas!

Good morning! Guess what? I am planning a trip to Disneyland! And I am so excited! My husband and I gave my parents a day trip to California Adventure and we have set the date! So I wanted to create something that represented Disney.

I have quite a few of these wooden balls in my stash, so I have been trying to figure out different things to make with them. Minnie ears were the perfect start! I picked pink, black and white for the colors and had some Minnie mouse ribbon left from another project.

Minnie Mouse wooden ornament

I painted all the small balls black for the ears and each of the large ones were painted a different color-pink, black and white. I used acrylic paint for each one and then sprayed each one with semi-gloss clear sealer.

minnie mouse wooden ball ornament black ears

I hot glued 2 of the small balls to the top of one large one to make cute little ears!

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Once the ears were on, I added a bow to the top. I also added a hanger so they could be used either as an ornament or as a decoration.

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I hung them on my little cup holder just to give you an idea of how they looked.

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Aren’t they cute?! They would be perfect for a little girls room, maybe a tablescape or even a Christmas tree.

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Perfect for any Disney theme!

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Well, that’s one project done, but I have lots of these wooden balls left, so I will be coming up with more! See you next time!

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Mini-Makeover in the Guest Room with Canvas on the Cheap

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Good morning! I’m a day late, but I have a great post for you today! Our family visited Disneyland back in May and Haley took this great photo of Walt Disney, Mickey and the Sleeping Beauty Castle. I worked with Canvas on the Cheap and they created this amazing canvas for me. I used it in my newly decorated guest room/Haley’s room. When Haley saw the canvas and the room, who had two comments, “I want the canvas” and ‘My room looks so grown up!”

*We are participant with Link Connector.com and Canvas on the Cheap, an Affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Canvas on the Cheap and affiliated sites.*

Guest room Makeover Walt Disney and Mickey Canvas

When I edited the canvas, I made the whole thing in black and white and then colored in different areas. The castle, sky, flowers and the statue all have some color to them.

Guest Room Makeover Walt Disney and Sleeping Beauty Castle

I love how it looks! The print even wraps around the sides of the canvas and there is even a hanger added to the back.

“Located in Austin Texas, Canvas On The Cheap delivers high quality canvas prints on time and at incredible prices. Our experienced canvas professionals produce over one million canvas photo prints per year and that massive volume on the most popular canvas sizes enables us to offer time-tested quality at a huge savings to you.

Our canvas prints are printed and stretched in-house and come ready to hang or display with a classic semi-gloss finish. To turn your pictures to canvas prints just choose your canvas size and wrap thickness, upload your pictures or art, and choose your border for a personalized canvas print of your own. Whether you are celebrating Christmas, Mother’s Day, a birthday or any special occasion, be remembered for giving a one-of-a-kind custom canvas print.”

Haley had made this bench years ago from an old desk and a headboard. Since she moved into her own apartment, I could finally move the bench out from the garage, where it has been sitting since we moved a year and a half ago. My husband revised it a bit and I touched up the a paint a bit. It fits perfect in here!

 

Guest Room Makeover Bench, Canvas on the Cheap, Disney Pillow

Here is the rest of the room. The one wall is painted charcoal and I decided to stay with this color. I added some turquoise and yellow accents.

Guest Room Makeover Bedroom Grey, Yellow, Turquoise

I left several of Haley’s things in here, so she didn’t feel pushed out. Of course, I want her to come home any time she can! She loves peacocks, but couldn’t take this lamp with her, so I kept it in here.

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You can see her treasured Pirates of the Caribbean book, along with the beads she purchased while in Hawaii.

Guest Room Makeover White Metal Stand

Guest Room Makeover Nightstand Blanket and Book

The skull pillow was hers too (obviously, if you know Haley). I added a couple of others to bring in more color.

Guest Room Makeover Bed with QuiltGuest Room Makeover Throw Pillows You Are My Sunshine

I needed something small in the space between the bed and the wall and the stool was the perfect fit. I added a couple of books and a pitcher with some leaves.

Guest Room Makeover Side table stool and pitcher

My father-in-law made this bookshelf for my husband and me when we first got married, over 30 years ago. It has also been stored in the garage and I am very happy I finally have a good place for it.

Guest Room Makeover Book Shelf with Shutter Doors

See the cute floral basket in the bottom corner? I found it in the clearance aisle at Walmart. I snagged it up quickly! It is the perfect colors for this room!

Guest Room Makeover Blue and Yellow Floral Basket

Of course, Kiara had to get in on this picture business. Cutie!

Guest Room Makeover Mirror Reflection

Canvas on the Cheap is a great company to work with. The ordering was simple and the canvas came quickly. I hope you will take some time to check them out! Thanks for stopping by today! I hope you all have a great week!

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Other posts you might enjoy:

green and white striped bench pink purse    wooden box gold flatware coral fabric   picket fence neutral flag with bike and blanket

Top 10 Things to Do in Disneyland and California Adventures

Hello! Happy Friday! We just go back from Disneyland and I thought I would share my top 10 Things we did and enjoyed during our visit.

1. MaxPass

OMG this thing is amazing!  If you have not heard of this, you are missing out.  For $10 you can get Fastpasses on your phone through the Disney App and you can download the photos from the rides and photographers.  How cool is that?  You know what else?  You can get Fastpasses every hour and a half instead of every two hours!  We didn’t use it in California Adventures because we didn’t feel like we would need it.  But it was so useful in Disneyland.  We got on every ride we wanted plus some we hadn’t been on in years.  It was amazing!  So is an picture we got from the photographers and were able to download right onto our phones.

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2. Pixar Fest

If you are planning on going to Disneyland in the near future (like before October 2018), you will get to experience Pixar Fest.  This event is super cool because Disney and Pixar are coming together.  So every movie that Disney and Pixar has worked on together is coming to California Adventures.  And rides are changing to be more like Pixar, so California Screamin’ is turning into the Incredicoaster.  Here are some of the pictures from California Adventures where Pixar was everywhere!

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3. Pixar’s Together Forever Event

OK!  This event is so cool!  Disney has out Disneyed themselves with this.  For this awesome event you stand in the middle of Main Street and Disney projects scenes from movies onto the buildings.  I had so much nostalgia during this and I will admit that both Haley and I were in tears from happiness from this night.  So I won’t give too much away, but here are some pictures of what you can expect.

 

4. Pixar Parade

Who doesn’t like parades?  Well Disneyland has a new one!  The new Pixar parade features all of our favorites like Up, Inside Out, Toy Story, and Monsters University.  Can I just say that the Kevin and Russel character from the parade is the cutest?

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5. Guardians of the Galaxy

Before I get into Guardians of the Galaxy, I have to say that I was disappointed that the Tower of Terror was going to be disappearing.  BUT!  I did enjoy the new Guardians of the Galaxy.  There was a lot more going up and down which was great and it was quite enjoyable.  And even though I haven’t seen the Guardian of the Galaxy movies, I was still able to enjoy myself.

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6. Electrical Parade

Okay, I will be the first to say that I love anything shiny.  So watching the electrical parade was a lot of fun.  To see how everything was lit up and bright and shiny.  One of our favorites was seeing Mac from Cars.  His whole trailer was full of lights and lit up in different patterns!  That was really cool.

 

 

 

7. Characters

As Haley and I have gotten older, it hasn’t been as important to see all of the characters at Disneyland.  But it’s obviously something fun for kids of all ages.  During this trip we took pictures with Minnie Mouse and Mary Poppins and Bert.  The cool thing about seeing Minnie Mouse is that she had a photographer with her and we were able to download our picture almost immediately with the MaxPass.  You can also use the Disneyland app to see where different characters are going to be in the park.

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8. Rides

Of course you have to hit the rides!  It doesn’t matter if the ride is Peter Pan or Big Thunder Mountain, all rides are a must.  We rode Peter Pan, Roger Rabbit, and Matterhorn for the first time in years.  And thanks to the MaxPass we were able to get our Fastpasses and get on even faster.  You know what’s even better?  Rides like Splash Mountain and Space Mountain where they take your picture, you are able to download right onto your phone right after the ride.  Have the 8 digit id code and BOOM!  You have all of your screaming faces right in your hand.

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9. Food

Try the Grey Stuff?  It’s delicious!  Don’t believe me ask the dishes!

Yes!  There is an actual treat called The Grey Stuff at Disneyland!  And it’s so good!  It’s at the Red Rose Tavern in Fantasyland.  It’s a little tiny cake with lots and lots of frosting sitting atop a shortbread cookie.  And boy howdy is it good.  The cookie was okay, but the cake and frosting.  MMMMMMMMMM!  We also tried two new restaurants, The French Market and The Hungry Bear.  We really enjoyed The French Market and have already vowed to go back to try the other things on the menu.  We had the chicken ceasar salads, french dip, and the pulled pork sandwich.  They were so good!  The Hungry Bear has your standard burger and fries.  But it was still really good.

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10. Family Time

Obviously the best thing about Disneyland is getting to spend time with your family.  I love being able to experience new things with them and spend quality time with them.  Even though we have been to Disneyland numerous times, I will always enjoy going with them yet again.  I could go on each ride over and over again and I still wouldn’t get tired of visiting the parks.  All in all, the time you spend with your family is priceless and it will always be cherished.

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Sparkle