Help Planning Your Next Disney Vacation

Help Planning Your Next Disney Vacation

When I was a little girl, my dream job was becoming a travel agent (or librarian, but that’s another blog post …). I would research and plan vacations for my family and future me. For fun. We even went on some of them. Fast forward many years and I decided this was the year to actually fulfill that dream. Since traveling to Disney is one of my sweet spots, I decided to become a Magical Vacation Planner. It made perfect sense to start with an area I know really well and let’s face it, I was already planning trips, so why not make it official? Now I get to help other families plan their perfect Disney vacation! It is so much fun. And since we’ve been to Disney so many times I have TONS of insider tips and secrets to share. Insider Tip: I know all the best restaurants, easiest ways to get around the parks and some fun things to do aside from the typical rides. So how can I help YOU plan the perfect Disney trip? If you are thinking about Disney, head over to my Magical Vacation Planner website (click HERE) and let me know – I’ll work with you one-on-one to help you make it fantastic. There is NO additional cost to you, and you get the benefit of someone who knows Disney well. It’s a win-win for both of us! I get the fun of planning more trips and you get the benefit of having an expert make your trip planning easier and efficient. Insider Tip: Other trips I can help you with include...
A Perfect Non-Park Day at Disney

A Perfect Non-Park Day at Disney

Although I’m a huge fan of the Disney Parks, sometimes I want (or need) a non-park day. Ready to learn how to enjoy the PERFECT non-park day? Then read on … It’s a non-park day, so you don’t have to get up at the crack of dawn (unless of course, you want to). When I’m traveling with the family, I do like to get up about an hour before them (usually about 7:00) so that I can slowly get ready, do a short pilates routine (using my all-time favorite program – The Sisterhood and my travel yoga mat), and then have some time to enjoy a cup of coffee and a book on the balcony. Heaven. After such a leisurely start, I’ll put breakfast together for the family while they get ready. Since we’ll be eating out much of the day, it saves money to eat breakfast in the room – and we are all fine with not hitting a restaurant in the morning. If we just have a studio, breakfast will be something simple like fresh fruit and peanut butter toast, bagels or some type of breakfast bar. If we are staying in a one-bedroom, I might do eggs and hashbrowns – depends upon our mood. Insider Tip: Don’t have a car? You can easily get groceries delivered to your hotel using Shipt. We used it on our recent trip and within an hour and a half of ordering had everything we needed delivered right to the front door. And, if you won’t be in the room, the groceries can be left with the bell desk. All orders...
More than Food at Epcot’s Food & Wine Festival

More than Food at Epcot’s Food & Wine Festival

Although we LOVE trying all the different foods when we visit Epcot, I also love that there is so much more than food at the Epcot Food & Wine Festival. After making your way around the World Showcase and checking out the various food booths, be sure to take some time to do some of the other fun festival activities. Enjoy live music. The concerts at Epcot are so much fun! They are located at the American Pavilion. Every few nights there is a different artist and they put on three nightly shows – each one lasting about 30 minutes. Seating is limited, but even if you don’t get a seat, you can still enjoy the music by standing along the sides or just outside the amphitheater. We’ve seen Rick Springfield, 38 Special and many other great shows. Grab a margarita at nearby Italy or Mexico and enjoy some live music! Insider Tip: If you want to be sure to have a seat, you can book an Eat to the Beat Dining Package. You can book a meal at one of 14 restaurants in Epcot and you’ll have a guaranteed seat on the same day. It is a little pricey but includes a full meal, so if you want to eat at one of the selected restaurants anyway might be a perfect solution. Details can be found HERE. Play with your food. A fun and affordable event occurs in the Land Pavilion every day at 3:30 and 5:30. For only $10 per person, you can learn to make candy sushi. Kids especially love this one – it holds their...
2019 Best of Epcot Food & Wine – Vegetarian Style

2019 Best of Epcot Food & Wine – Vegetarian Style

On a recent visit to the 2019 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival, I had a lot of fun scouting out the best vegetarian dishes. Thanks to our annual passes and super cheap flights on Southwest, it’s totally affordable to visit for just a short weekend. My daughter is technically a pescatarian, so I did eat quite a bit of seafood, but I also checked out many of the vegetarian options. Luckily for me, there were more great choices than I could indulge in! One of the things I love about the Food & Wine Festival is how easy Disney makes it to find dishes that fit your eating style. The booklet has little symbols next to every dish that is Gluten Free or Vegetarian. There are THIRTY options at the festival this year with the vegetarian symbol! You’ll also find a little symbol for “kid-friendly” dishes. It’s such a fun way to try lots of different things, and definitely a highlight of the year for foodies! I grabbed my booklet and started my adventure. This year, instead of starting in Mexico or Canada, I noticed there were a number of booths that appeared before the World Showcase. The first one I tried was at Earth Eats. Both of the dishes are vegetarian, although the Impossible Cottage pie contains Almond milk in the topping, so it was off our list (I have a severe tree nut allergy which makes this all a bit more challenging). It was a super humid day so I passed on the Impossible slider and opted for a flight of Kombucha. This was an excellent...
Why We Bought Disney Annual Passes

Why We Bought Disney Annual Passes

We bought annual passes to Walt Disney World this year. And we live in Indiana. Are we crazy? Maybe a little bit, but at the beginning of the year, we sat down and thought about how we wanted to vacation this year and realized we already had two trips to Disney planned. Plus, this is the year that Galaxy’s Edge opens and my daughter is a huge Star Wars fan. Years ago, we used to spend three or four weeks in Florida every June. With a husband who’s a teacher, and my ability to work from anywhere, it was a great way to kick off summer. Sadly, those days are long gone, but as a family, Orlando and Disney hold so many wonderful memories that we make a point to visit at least once a year. Back in the day, we could purchase ten-day tickets with no expiration and just use a few days each year. It was lovely. Knowing that we had a few trips planned, I started investigating annual passes. We’ve always kicked around the idea but just couldn’t justify it. Until this year Thanks to our DVC membership (which we love!!!), we were able to buy some nicely discounted annual passes that did have a few blackout periods. Luckily for us, those dates did not interfere with trips already planned. We also added a third Disney trip to the summer to get full advantage – and I just booked a long weekend next month with just my daughter. It was a big cost upfront, but it’s been worth every penny. The big advantages are: Not feeling...
Beat the Heat at Disney

Beat the Heat at Disney

Want to thrive on your summer Disney trip? Not just survive it? Visiting Walt Disney World in the summer can be hot. REALLY HOT! As in, you can’t spend five minutes outside without sweat dripping down your back hot. Yet you can still have a wonderful time – with a little planning and a little swizzle in your schedule. Read on to learn our tips and tricks! Tip #1: Take a break during the hottest part of the day. This may seem obvious, but it amazes me how many people don’t follow it. When we come back to park refreshed, cooled off and ready to enjoy the evening, I see those people yelling at their kids, mopping the sweat off their faces and looking rundown. Seriously, you’ll have a MUCH better time if you just take a few hours out of the park from about 1:00 – 4:00. If you have little ones, take a nap, older kids may enjoy splashing around in a pool or even just going out for a nice long lunch in an air-conditioned restaurant. On our recent summer trip, we spent a few hours bowling at Splitsville – it was a blast AND we had a great chance to cool off before heading back to the Magic Kingdom. Tip #2: Drink lots of water. Another obvious tip, but easy to forget. Especially when you are in Epcot and the fun drinks around the world are tempting you. Go ahead and try a few, just be sure to drink plenty of water in-between. Often when we start to get cranky, I force everyone to drink...

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