Celebrating the Holidays at Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

We had such a blast during out visit to Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween (even with getting poured on!), that I was trilled when the opportunity to attend Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party arose. I was so eager to check out the Magic Kingdom all decked out in it’s Christmas best.

And the timing could not be better, as we went the night before Autumn’s 4th birthday, so she thought we were the best parents ever taking her to Disney World for her birthday. Sure! Unlike last time’s surprise, we warned her this time that we were going, so she told everyone within shouting distance that she was going to Disney as well for the week leading up to it. Repeatedly.

Thankfully we made good time and only had to hear ‘are we there yet’ 1,000 times and not a 1,000,000! ha!  But, of course, she started to scream with excitement in the car once she saw the Mickey Pylon that is visible at the exit you take for Celebration on I-4.  ‘I SEE MICKEY!!!!!!!!”

 

 

Before we knew it we were on the ferry to the Magic Kingdom.

One of the Captains gave her a sticker and called her a princess. Stuff like that is just so awesome.

And then heading into the park for an awesome time!!!!

I just can’t get over the charm that is all over the park. From the moment you get to the entrance you are welcomed with holiday decor. Main Street USA is heavily decorated for the holiday season with candy canes, wreathes, ornaments, soldiers

We arrived when they were doing the Flag Retreat service, which was really cool to see. Especially since it was the first time Autumn had seen anything like that. She stood there quietly, watching the service with her hand over her heart.

We are counting down ’till Christmas. Are you?!

There is a perfect photo opportunity by City Hall that everyone should check out.

 

And of course you can’t pass up the chance to take a selfie in front of the castle!

One of the best things about these parties is that the lines for the rides virtually disappear and you are able to get on the rides almost instantly. Autumn and I went on The Little Mermaid ride, which is a favorite of ours, just by walking right in. No line, no wait! Then Price and Autumn went on the Aladdin ride and then on the It’s a Small World ride.

 

While we were by the Aladdin ride, we bought Dole Whips!! Actually, we got a Dole Float, which is the pineapple whip topped cup of pineapple juice, and a *new* Pineapple Upside Down Cake that is topped with Dole Whip.  Both amazing and give life meaning.

Yeah, we like Dole Whips that much…

 

Autumn isn’t such a big fan of cold treats so she didn’t like the Dole Whip that much (fine, more for me!!!!), but she was thrilled about getting cookies and drinks around the park at the various locations where they have blow up candy stick markers.

There are 6 locations for these treats throughout the park. We only stopped at a few but they were all yummy.

Even more thrilling was telling us that she wasn’t sharing as she jammed the cookies into her mouth. It was all for drama as we all had our own cookies and she does share well but she just loves to say she isn’t sharing, esp when it comes to food. She is like Joey from Friends.

While the Dole Whip treats and holiday treats were enjoyable, they were not very filling, so we decided to stop for a bit to enjoy some food and drinks. We wanted it to be quick and affordable so Price and I split an order of beef nachos ($12.49) from Pecos Bill Tall Tale Inn and Café in Frontierland. I trashed them up by covering them with just about every topping at the toppings bar to make them even more filling and delicious.

While we gobbled them up we watched the clock in hopes of getting to the 7.40pm show time for Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration (7.40, 9.25, 10.30, 11.55pm)at the Castle Forecourt Stage. We missed the first few minutes of it, but Price and Autumn still snuck in on the side and had a great view on all the dancing.

 

After that, we hung around so that Autumn could see the gang from Frozen in the A Frozen Holiday Wish show (8.15pm).  Since this is the only showing of this show I suggest making this a priority of the night, especially if you kids like the Frozen movie.

Anna, Elsa, Kristoff, and Olaf come for a visit and has a  gift to the kingdom, Elsa transform the castle into a icy winter palace with her powers. It’s really pretty awesome.

Autumn was in complete awe!

There was some chanting as part of the Frozen show and she even participated, which she hardly ever does so she was really into it.

 

Soon after the Frozen show was the Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade (8.30 and 11.00pm). The parade winds through Adventureland, then Liberty Square, in front of the Castle, and then down Main Street USA. That’s a lot of fun Christmas music, waving, and dancing!

Since having a good spot for the Frozen show was our priority, we didn’t have great spot for a parade, but with Autumn on Price’s shoulders, she still got to see her favorite princesses, Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Olaf,

It’s lovely weather for a sleigh ride down Main Street, U.S.A. in “Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmastime Parade.” Santa Claus, gingerbread men, elves, reindeer and other friends from the North Pole join Mickey and his pals for the happiest holiday parade.

Since we missed the start of the Mickey’s Most Merriest Celebration, Price and Autumn caught the 9.25 showing while I browsed the shops. Basically I want everything from Pandora to make a Little Mermaid bracelet. #disneygoals

Then we met up for Autumn to do some birthday shopping before we left to head home.

We didn’t plan on staying late enough to see the Holiday Wishes Fireworks that start at 10pm, but we were having such a wonderful time that we caught some of the fireworks that light up the skies above Cinderella Castle timed with holiday music as we were waiting for the ferry ride back to the parking lot.

Unfortunately, we had missing packing up a key piece in our stroller set up that allows the use of the 2nd seat. So, again, we were piggy backing Autumn across the parking lot. But this time, she was not freaking out with excitement, but was utterly exhausted. And so were we.

Our shoulders and backs were killing us the next day but it was all worth it.

Mickey certainly knows how to throw a Merry Celebration!!!

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Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party runs through December 22nd

Tickets are available select nights, making the park close earlier than normal for this ‘private’ event. You do not need to purchase general admission to the park to attend this event.  Tickets start at $89.00

You can purchase tickets HERE.

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While I was invited to attend Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party with my family for free, all opinions are my own.

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Happy Friendsgiving 2017

I love that we found such a great group of friends since moving to Florida.

We just clicked and it works so well with kids all around the same age (5 and under). The kids all play together and we get to hang and talk fun things like crappy sleep, endless weekend to do lists, and boob jobs we dream of. Ah mom life! ha!

Well, we divided up the holidays and hosting duties throughout the year.

Molly and Aaron got Friendsgiving, so we headed over to their house on Saturday with a giant tray of Sausage & Mushroom Stuffing and some booze in hand to hang out with friends while getting stuffed on some really awesome food!

 

They created really cute Thankful cards for each of the kids and gave them crayons to color in a big picture together. It was a good activity for the kids, besides the regular running around and screaming they always do.

Hunter’s future girlfriend Mila… so sweet and squishy. I love fresh babies.

Hunter was thrilled just to hang out with everyone. Also, nom on some blocks.

I did my typical Thanksgiving thing and not eat any turkey but just stuff myself on all the sides.

I realized that my sweet potatoes need work. The ones that Dolly brought were out of this world. They were so incredibly creamy, mine are never like that. But I did rock the stuffing that I brought so at least there is that! I am good with my stuffing skills, but I need to work on things for my sweet potatoes.

 

 

The kids finally wound down and watched a movie.

Ahh, so many girls. The few boys are going to be in trouble in this group!

The ladies stayed in and talked and talked and the guys went outside to build a fire n the fire pit and hang there.

Well, I’d say that the night was a big success!

Can’t wait for our next group party… Dolly & Rocky’s Ugly Sweater Party!!

 

Happy Birthday Autumn @ 4 years old

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I simply snapped this picture while you were waiting for Poppy to come over for your birthday to give you your presents, but it’s a new favorite.

It shows off your personality perfectly.

You are eagerly waiting for presents, because you have zero chill. Yet, you still look cool and fun. I think it captures your free spirit.  You won’t let us do your hair but you need to have sunnies around at all times for style and for the sun that bothers your eyes. The TV sometimes bothers them too, so it’s cute seeing you wear them in the house when you first get up.

I think you barely go a day without wearing something related to Disney, but it’s just so cute how you love the princesses just as much as you love Mickey and the Roadster Racers. But we don’t tell Disney Jr how you are also in love with Paw Patrol and Shimmer and Shine. shhhh, your secret is safe with me!

You are insanely smart. You easily identity colors, shapes, letters, colors, animals, and so much more. You are quick to point things out, and eager to continue to learn more and more.

However, you do not enjoy playing by yourself. You would be happy to watch youtube or TV allllll day if we let you (we do not!) but the moment the TV is off you are like “but who is gonna play with me?!?!” Dare we suggest that you color by yourself or create some play-doh masterpiece by yourself. HOW DARE WE?!?!? You think its much better that we draw something super complicated like Sophia the First with her horse and rabbit with the sun shinning that you immediately color in vs using the very coloring book that you want us to replicate.

I love how caring you are with Hunter. You are a wonderful big sister. It’s so fun to watch you with him. I know that you will continue to do a great job of holding him, helping him get toys, and helping me out with him. We just need to work on you not being so loud around him, or me.

There are moments when my frustration with you is ripping my head up when you are not patient or really, really loud, but those moments pass quickly as you have me quickly cracking up with some exaggerated expression or response to me. I know I should take you seriously when you roll my eyes at me, but it’s the cutest thing ever. Omg, when you nail being sarcastic… perfect!

I keep catching myself seeing you in the future, like in the picture above. There are these moments when you are looking so mature and I see you 10 years in the future and it breaks my heart and excites me at the same time. I don’t love how fast.

I am looking forward to everything this next year brings.

I love you so much!

Love,

Mom

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Currently…

you love “teacher beans”, carrots in chicken soup, but not the chicken, Doritos, making smoothies with me, rice, pasta, hot dogs, waffles, peas, corn, coconut water, and any excuse for “sessert” even when I tell you we don’t have dessert every day, it’s a special thing. You don’t like sharing food. We can play around pretending to steal your food until you don’t think it’s funny anymore and are like “cool it guys, it’s MINE!!!!!!”

symnastics (gymnastics) is your favorite thing. classes on Tuesday night make your week. You can do headstands against the wall with little effort. Your cartwheel needs a lot of work, but we can’t tell you that. At least your enthusiasm is 110%

You battle us at bedtime. You really shouldn’t be napping so long during the day, but it is what it is since you are at daycare, since it makes bedtime a struggle when you aren’t too tired, but need to bed to have enough sleep. And you sneak into our bed most nights, esp. since Hunter was born.

You weigh about 29 pounds. You generally wear 3T with some 2T and 4T in the mix as well.

Owl is still your favorite stuffed animal, but not the original owl since his eyes got beat up in the washer/dryer and you do NOT like them. You won’t let us wash this owl so I keep spraying it with monster spray (night time essential oils) to keep it smelling fresh. Also, I hope the oils will mellow you out at night too

“What did you say?” you say that in the cuuuuutest way when you missed what we said. It’s kinda excited and confused and all just one word at the same time.

You are not a cuddlier. Well, only when you know we will kick you out of our bed and then you want to cuddle. sneaky! And you still don’t like covers either.

Dear Hunter @ 5 months

November 2017

Dear Hunter,

Or maybe I should call you Alfalfa! You have 1 long dark hair that stands up in the middle of your head. We smooth it down but it tends to pop back up again. The rest of your hair is much finer, and is more slowly coming in, while this single strand of hair has a mind of its own. It’s really barely noticeable so I don’t cut it, plus I’m sorta interested in how long it will actually get.

You have 99% gotten better from being sick. It just took 4 doctors visits and a 10 course with a nebulizer, but you so rarely cough now that I am calling it a win.

Even while you were sick you were a champ, everyone at daycare said that you were still so happy and smiley. I get to hear great reports of you playing around, being happy, and even starting to hold your bottle on your own now.

You have mastered rolling over. As soon as we lay you down you twist yourself over and push up to see what is going on, and then you can just as quickly flip back over onto your back. I only wish you wouldn’t do that while I was changing your diaper. It’s like trying to change a gator while in a death roll. I usually give up flipping you onto your back and put the diaper on your which ever way you let me while you are on your side or stomach.

Sleep has been rough since you were sick. You get up multiple times at night still, which is okay except that prior to getting sick you were only up 1x, maybe 2x. There were even nights when you would sleep through. Now I just bring you right into bed and you snuggle up next to me while nursing. You are back to sleep a few minutes later, as am I, but we probably should try to get you back to sleep without that being the routine. It would make things easier for me in some ways (I’d probably still need to get up just to pump then), but I sorta just love it at the same time. It’s so nice getting to snuggle with you.

I’m still so much in awe of your chill personality. You are so relaxed and happy. You do get talkative and loud at times, but you are still so happy when you are loudly blabbering and shreaking away.

Can we please slow down time though? I can’t believe that you will be eating foods and sitting up soon. And then crawling… omg. I can’t handle it all speeding by!

I love you.

Love,

Mommy

PS. SORRY Autumn keeps grabbing your head and hugging you. She loves you, she really does, but it’s not a gentle love. I know you will get back at her soon enough!

 

 

Buttermilk Chive Biscuits

Lila is a tough critic. But she approved of these biscuits.

Lila is one of my friend’s daughters. She is just about a year and a half old and in the year that I’ve known her I’ve gotten stink eye from this adorable little girl more times than I can count. She is the queen at mean muggin’.

But I think I finally broke through to her!!!!

All thanks to these biscuits!!!!!

Autumn and I made them the day before for our family. She is a fantastic little helper and baker. She helped me measure everything into the bowls. We count out the ingredients as we pour them into the bowls. And we she even learning how to propely scoop the floor into the measuring cup too!

That’s why Kid Chef Bakes: The Kids Cookbook for Aspiring Bakers by Lisa Huff is fantastic new cookbook. It has so many recipes that are kid friendly so they will love what you make with them in it. Kids of all ages will love everything from the cookies to the cupcakes to the bars. 

The book is full of clear instructions and lots of beautiful pictures. I love how informative it is for the kids learning the different processes and techniques used in baking. The book starts with different lessons in learning baking skills. It starts with basics likes measuring and moves on to folding ingredients in, and how to work with dough. All really important, interesting, and fun things for kids to try as they develop their kitchen skills.

(To note: Autumn said she would help me with the biscuits, then decided making biscuits at her sandbox/water-table on our lanai was more fun. We co-baked things. ha!)

 

Well, back to little miss Lila!

I was helping out my friend by picking Lila and her bigger sister, who is awesome friends with Autumn, up from daycare and giving them dinner while she hustled back from a meeting from work. I managed to get a smile from her while at daycare as I picked her up from her classroom, but the real moment when she let her guard with me when the kids were eating. She saw some leftover biscuits in a container on our counter and she eagerly pointed to them. While it wasn’t what I had planned on feeding her, I figured an extra biscuit wouldn’t hurt!

She gobbled that biscuit right up!!! I got the cutest smile when she was done and the rest of the night as smooth sailing.

I guess you just can’t resist a really great biscuit. I know I can’t.

This foolproof biscuit recipe is from Lisa Huff’s

To note: I didn’t have a 2″ round cookie or biscuit cutter and my cast iron pan was too small. But I made due with what I ha. And guess what… delicious biscuits.

The moral of the story is to adapt to use the size cutter that you have, or use the pan that you have, or even both! Square biscuits? Cool! 2 Smaller pans? Cool! Do the best that you can and just make it work otherwise.

Just don’t let anything come between you and these awesome biscuits. They are a going to be an instant family favorite!

Buttermilk Chive Biscuits

Makes 12 biscuits

Ingredients

  • Butter, for greasing the pan
  • 2 3⁄4 Cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 4 1⁄2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 6 Tablespoons cold, cubed unsalted butter
  • 1/2 Cup chopped fresh chives*
  • 1 to 1 1/2 Cups cold buttermilk
  • Flour, for the work surface
  • 3 Tablespoons melted unsalted butter

Process 

  1. Preheat the oven to 425F degrees . Set the oven rack to the lowest level. Grease a 10 1/2″ cast iron pan.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  3. Cut in the butter with a fork or pastry cutter, until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the chives
  4. Add 1 Cup of buttermilk; stir to loosely combine. Slowly add more buttermilk as necessary until the dough just comes together but is still moist. Do not overwork the dough or the biscuits will come out dense and dry.
  5. Place the dough on a well floured surface. Gently press the dough into a 1″ thick disk. Cut out the biscuits using the round cutter to form the biscuits. If you need to reform the dough into a 1″ thick disk to cut out more biscuits, do so gently so you don’t overwork the dough.
  6. Place the biscuits next to each other in the prepared pan. Bake on the bottom rack for 12 to 17 minutes or until golden brown.
  7. Brush with the melted butter. Cool slightly before serving.

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Win a copy of Lisa Huff’s new book

Kid Chef Bakes: The Kids Cookbook for Aspiring Bakers

 

Leave a comment telling me what you like to make with your kids or what you liked to make with your parents while growing up.

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