Sunday, June 26, 2016

Disney Birthday Loot!

Sorry for the absence...This past Wednesday (June 22) was my birthday, and it was a busy week! But my husband made sure it was a Disney birthday...

The "Bohemian Minnie" line of products was represented by this adorable plush I wanted.

 And he got me these gorgeous Brave ears.

and this awesome "Bohemian Minnie" sweatshirt. Her pose reminds me of Holly Hobby. <3 

This beautiful Belle Jim Shore figure.

And this gorgeous high quality photo book of images of Disney World, to help get me through when I can't be there...

And lots of Disney figures!

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Disney Gets the Flower Crowns!

Photo by Mousesteps

Disney is starting to get the message about flower crowns (grin). Have you seen Minnie Mouse's outfit from the new Mickey's Royal Friendship Faire? Oh my goodness. I love it! I'm already searching Ebay for pleated skirts to do a Disneybound of this ensemble.

Photo by Kenny the Pirate

What a beautiful flower crown!!

Today after went to see Finding Dory, we stopped by the Disney Store, and they got the message too! I love this new line of Frozen art with Elsa's hair twined with flowers and snow crystals.

But this is what I wound up coming home with. There's this new line of MXYZ items, and this is a rubber pencil case. As soon as I saw it, I thought "oh yes...Disney trip autographs!" Still working out the details, since the white oil paint Sharpie tends to scratch off easily so I'll have to top coat it with something. But I still think it'll work out well! Imagine this covered with white autographs.

And as soon as I saw this Mrs. Potts lunch bag, I had to have it. Beauty and the Beast is my favorite movie ever. <3

Friday, June 17, 2016

Just Keep Swimming! - Florida Flashback Friday


Today's Florida Flashback Friday is sort of a flash forward as well. This weekend, Finding Dory comes out in theaters, and Tom and I plan to see it tomorrow. But today I was thinking back on the times we've gone to see, and loved, the Finding Nemo Musical at Animal Kingdom. Last trip, we sat in the very front row which for some people would be an awful spot, but we wanted to see all of the puppetry and singing up close and personal.

I've had a stressful last few days, so today I woke up with a song from the musical in my head. Honestly, I find the song quite comforting in a child-like way if you're going through something stressful or an anxiety attack.

Hey mister grumpy gills
Life's full of little spills
Don't throw your fins up in disgust
Oh what's the use of floatin' there
Not going anywhere?
Swish your tail
And dive on in
And trust...
Just keep swimming
Just keep swimming
Life isn't all that grim!
Just keep swimming
Just keep swimming
What do we do?
We swim?
La la la la la la la la
Don't sing!
La la la la la la la la
No singing, please!
La la la la la la la!
Ugh! Now that song is going to be stuck in my head!
Look there's a shiny thing!
Hey that looks interesting
Please, Dory try to stay on task
It says "P Sherman 42 Wallaby Way, Sydney" Hmm, I guess it's nothing
No, Dory! That's the mask!
Yay! We did it!
Yeah, but now what?
We don't know how to get there
So we follow our gut!
Just keep swimming
Just keep swimming
Everything will be okay
Just keep swimming
Move your tail
And sure enough we'll find our way
Oh sometimes things look bad
Then poof! The moment is gone
And what do we do?
We just keep swimming on

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Disney World Pressed Pennies Necklace - A Memento Unlike Any Other!


I'm always looking for new fun ways to celebrate and remember my Disney trips and the experiences there. One way that some people like to commemorate their trip is by collecting pressed pennies from various locations around the parks. I normally haven't done this in the past because I just didn't know what to do with the resulting stretched pennies. Some people turn them into bracelets, but I'm not a big bracelet wearer (other than the one given to me by my Jawa friend on this last trip). But before our last trip to Disney World, I had a friend on Facebook share something another friend of hers had made. And I instantly loved the idea.

Sara Ann now has an Etsy page so that you can do what I did. Take pennies on your trip (I've heard that pre-1982 pennies press best because after that year, the copper content was greatly decreased) and quarters. Each pressed penny costs 51 cents. And during your trip, just keep an eye open for the pressed penny machines.

During our last trip to Disney, I collected the following:

...and when I got back, I mailed them to Sara Ann. A couple of weeks later, I received a super cool and completely personal memento of our trip to Disney World.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Jawa with a Flower Crown - My Mascot

You know you've reached a status of total meta regarding your own Disney vacation when....

...In reference to a favorite moment from your most recent trip, you make a pair of Flower Crown Mickey Ears for your brand new Jawa Pop figure.

The flower crown was made with two twisted green pipe cleaners, black felt for the ears, and hot glued flowers. I shouldn't admit that I wandered around my local craft store for about a half hour looking for the perfect flowers in a proportionate size.

I'm either totally meta, or totally a dork. Either way, I ain't ashamed!

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Flower Crown Princess Buttons!

During our last trip to Disney World, we came prepared with 1" buttons for most of the princesses and face characters we met, featuring a joke or slogan or quote pertaining to the character. It was our way of trying to bring joy to their days. And of course I want to do it again for this trip. So a couple of weeks ago, I discovered the art series of DeviantArtist princessbeautycase. She did an art series featuring....

....All the Disney Princesses in flower crowns.

I mean, what? How perfect is that??

Here are just a few of my favorites....


The whole series is seriously awesome. She put a lot of thought into the flowers for each princess, giving Pocahontas sunflowers, Moana tropical flowers, Ariel flowers that could come from undersea, etc.

So I contacted the artist and asked her permission to make buttons for the characters using her art, and give them out on our next trip. (which is still being scheduled....might be later this year) She graciously said yes, so this happened:

I am so excited to give the princesses their buttons, and show the picture of all of the wonderful artworks princessbeautycase has created!

Just for fun, here's a collage of various pictures of me giving buttons to characters from our last trip. It was a pretty big hit, especially with Tiana, whose button was especially funny.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Making a Cast Member's Day


 Last Friday for my first Florida Flashback Friday, I mentioned something I've done in the past to show thanks to the characters at Disney for what they do. But there are Cast Members (the name for Disney employees) all around the parks and resorts who go above and beyond and really show the Disney spirit.

I work in public service at a library, and I know that even at as laid-back a place as a public library we still sometimes have patrons who get angry and vicious. Even though Disney World is set up as a place apart, where people smile at strangers and friendly faces are everywhere, there are still many a parkgoer who enters this space with anger and selfishness. 

I've seen it many a time: exhausted CMs (Cast Members) who have to stand there and take a tongue-lashing from a vacationing jerk who thinks that the rules don't apply to him, or he should get special treatment because of all the money he spent on his vacation (like we aren't all in the same boat). Honestly, I can think of very few other jobs where the employee is so constantly expected to exude enthusiastic happiness and kindness under such high-pressure circumstances constantly trying to beat them down. To me, every CM who smiles or is kind and friendly is a hero for overcoming all of these difficulties to still exude the spirit of Disney World.

That was a bit of a rant, I know, but I want to make it clear just why I feel it's so important to encourage these CMs when they go above and beyond. Every day my husband and I start our day at Disney World not only with a conscious resolve to enjoy ourselves and be happy, but with a desire to keep our eyes open for opportunities to encourage others. Along those lines, we usually end up writing out at least one message to an outstanding CM on most park days (at Guest Relations).

Here's how it works, to the best of my understanding.

When you encounter a CM who goes above and beyond, make note of that person's name. They all wear badges.

First name is fine...don't weird out the CM by asking for their full name. Make mental note of the time and where you're at.

Later that day...there's no rush...stop by the Guest Relations location near the front of whatever park you are visiting. When your turn comes, explain you've received excellent customer service and want to leave kudos for the Cast Member.

Now, here's the tricky part. The CM behind the desk will give you one of two forms. There's the Applause-o-Gram, which I've heard is a nice message to the CM, but does nothing for their record.

Apparently the form you want to ask for is a "Guest Service Fanatic Card." The Fanatic Cards go on the CM's permanent record, and can enter them for prizes each month.

Be sure to fill out all of the details you remember in order to ensure your message is delivered to the right person. Include your information, the time the experience took place, the location, and any details you feel might make your kudos stand out to the CM's supervisors.

Now, if you forget in your end-of-day exhaustion to leave a good word for the CM you appreciated, don't despair! If you're still at the parks, you can stop by the Guest Relations location at whatever park you are visiting and still leave a message for the CM, even if they work at another park. Still try to put down as much information as you remember.

Even after you get home from your vacation, even then you can leave a good word for a Cast Member.  Write an email to:

Make sure you include your name, where you're from, your telephone/e-mail, and when you visited.

I can personally confirm that this works, as we forgot to leave kudos for an especially great CM last trip, and I emailed when I got home. Not only did I get a personal email back (the first email was a form email,l but after that I got back a personal message), but I also received a phone call from the supervisor of the CM to let me know that they had been recognized for their service.

Seriously, do this takes maybe five or ten minutes out of your Disney day (which, on Disney time is nothing at all) and means so incredibly much to the person you encourage. There are other ways to encourage CMs as well, and I'll talk about those in the future, but this is by far the way that most directly affects their job.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Haunted Mansion Disneybound Ideas

It all started last night with a pair of ears. DoomBuggies on Facebook shared a pair of mouse ears made to look like either the Hatbox Ghost, or Phineas the Hitchhiking Ghost.

The Haunted Mansion is far and away my favorite ride, attraction, or experience at Disney World. And these ears are just so creatively done! The Etsy store selling them is on a break right now, but I'm curious to see the price when they return.

This led me down a rabbit hole of searching for Haunted Mansion Disneybounds. The most prevalent way to Disneybound the Haunted Mansion is by recreating the famous purple wallpaper with a brocade dress, or even a dress made from the famous pattern. I was, however, able to find this Polyvore collection that included the idea that appealed to me: Disneybounding as one of the ghosts by wearing mostly teal with a bit of white.

I'm definitely adding that to my list of potential ensemble inspirations at the parks.

Then there's this gorgeous dress, which combines the ghosts with the wallpaper. Best of both! And the design has such romantic sensibility, of course I love it. I could see this paired with a mouse ears flower crown with purple roses and teal Hitchhiking Ghosts on the ears themselves. 

I was so inspired, and so enjoyed, looking up different Haunted Mansion 'bounds last night, I had to do my own improvised version today with more of a boho feel. It felt odd going without a flower crown: if I had one in black roses, I totally would have worn it.

Another favorite aspect of the ride is the Tightrope Girl in the Stretching Room. I've seen plenty of people recreate an actual costume of her ensemble, but I am quite impressed with this woman's casual Disneybounding take on the outfit. Totally recognizable, but still a 'Bound and not a costume.

But my favorite visual cue of the Haunted Mansion are the bat stanchions in the Doombuggy queue. (Notice they're on my necklace I made, my earrings, and my scarf above). During our second trip, I started the ritual of patting each of them on the head as I walked to the Doombuggies. This was how I discovered that there are...wait for it...13 in a row. (There are two others, but not in a roped row)

Photo by Arthur Lyons

PhoenixFire Designs wore a lovely Dapper Day ensemble for the spring event just two months ago, and it featured a really beautiful bat stanchion necklace.

The necklace is now available for sale on her site. This one is quite tempting for me...

There are so very many more Haunted Mansion items available online, but these were a few things I especially liked.

Finally, I just had to share one actual costume. Just look at this brilliantly done Madame Leota costume.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Minnie Fabric and Dress Plans!

The other day while searching for more Disney fabrics, I stumbled across this fabric on the JoAnn Fabrics site and immediately loved it. A floral fabric covered in Minnie Mouses and in a polyester spandex blend instead of the oh so common quilter's cotton! A fabric that would be easy to make a maxi dress from!

I swung by the Columbus store when we were near there to see Jungle Book today, and wound up getting the very last of the bolt of fabric.

See all the Minnie Mouses on the fabric? Ahh I love it!!

Now, of course I'm not planning to wear this as a toga. It's time to pick a pattern! A maxi dress pattern of course, since this fabric is so soft and comfy I'd love to have it swish around.

I like this as a basic maxi dress pattern:

But I want to add some sort of a flutter sleeve, like this one maybe?

Or one like this vintage pattern. I have a vintage dress like this one that I LOVE to wear in summertime.


And of course when the dress is done, I'll be making a pair of flower crown Minnie ears in pretty vivid flowers like the ones on the fabric!  I'm quite excited!