Where to Take Pictures in Disneyland!

A few weeks ago my sister-in-law/BFF asked me where she should make sure her sweet little daughter had her pictures taken on their trip to Disneyland. I had a few quick answers for her, but then this really got me thinking. There are SO many good places for a photo op in DLR and I love like…all of them. Especially character pictures, but I’m leaving those out of this particular post. But maybe you don’t want to spend your whole day scouting the perfect picture area, you know? So I’ve made a small list of my top 10 places in both Disneyland and California Adventure to make sure you get your picture taken.

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10. In Front of the Balloons. You know the balloons. The ones being sold all over Disneyland? I love pictures with those behind you. You can also ask the Cast Member holding the balloons if you can hold them for a picture (you won’t be able to hold it all alone, the CM will still be holding them, just off camera). My personal favorite kind of balloon picture is one of a little one being held up in front of them so all you see are the balloons, the sky and your little one being hoisted up in dads arms. So cute.

9. The Teacup or Dumbo. Outside of these rides, they have a stationary teacup/Dumbo to sit in and take a few pictures in. You can’t miss out on these.

8. The Matterhorn. Theres just something extra Disney about this spot. Plus its a really cool area.

7. Main Street. I love Main Street. There is something extra magical about it, therefore the photo opportunities there are wonderful.

6. In front of the Partners statue. Thats the statue of Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse holding hands in the Hub at Disneyland (just a ways in front of the castle). Its iconic. Its beautiful. I love seeing people copy the post of Walt and Mickey, especially.

5. On King Arthurs Carousel. This is one of the most Disney-esque pictures I could ever suggest. Some of my favorite pictures of my boys are ones of them on a horse, enjoying the carousel.

4. Snow Whites Wishing Well. Oh I love this area (just to the right of Sleeping Beauty Castle). Its quiet and hidden away and its magical and whimsical and the picture opportunities there are lovely.

3. In Front of the Train Station. You know, like right when you walk in after getting your ticket/pass scanned. Everyone takes there picture there, and for good reason!

2. The Pink Door by Alice in Wonderland. This is in Fantasyland. Its a tiny little door near Alice in Wonderland and Teacups. Its adorable and makes for fun pictures. Its especially fun if you can put your little ones in front of it!

  1. In Front of the Castle. Obviously this is my #1, because you just can’t go wrong with a castle picture. Want to mix your castle picture up? Don’t take it right in front of the castle. Move to the side. Take it from behind the castle, in Fantasyland! Go stand at the beginning of Main Street! There are so many ways to customize this picture to make it your own. Also, if you want something super cute – my very favorite castle pictures are little babies/toddlers sitting by themselves in front of the castle. Obviously you have to wait until there isn’t a crowd thats not paying attention that may trample your tiny precious cargo, but once you get that clear spot, go for it – because this will be one of the best Disney pictures you’ve ever taken.

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10. At Carthay Circle. Its a big, interesting backdrop to have, and depending on what season/celebration you’re there for, its typically decorated really well!

9. Anywhere around Soarin’. There is an airplane thats a great photo op, the building itself is pretty neat and there is beautiful scenery around it – all of which will give you a lovely picture.

8. The Walt Disney statue on Buena Vista Street. Another classic, much like the Partners Statue in Disneyland. Its supposed to be Walt as he would have been when he first arrived in California.

7. Grizzly Peak/the Surrounding Area. There are cool waterfalls, pretty rock formations and nice scenery/nature spots. You can’t miss these ones.

6. In Front of Monsters Inc. All the doors and bright colors – love. This is one of my very favorite places for a picture. Its just so cute and bright and happy.

5. The End of Hollywood Land. There is a big poster type wall – does that makes sense? Its a fun, iconic spot.

4. With the Red Trolley Car. You’ll see it. It drives around California Adventure all throughout the day and is an adorable spot for pictures.

3. In Front of Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: Breakout! Its just an iconic one and the exterior of that ride (well, the whole entire ride, actually) is amazing)!

2. In Front of Pixar Pier. There are a number of spots you can stand to get an amazing Pixar Pier shot and I recommend all of them. I think my favorite is either on the bridge on your way to Pixar Pier or in the World of Color viewing area.

1. Anywhere in Cars Land. You can’t pick a bad spot here. The theming in Cars Land, as I and so many others say all the time, is incredible. You truly feel like you are in the movie when you’re here. So seriously, every single spot is a great place for a snapshot.

 

What I Hope My Kids Learn from Disney

Dear Kids,

You come from a family of Disney obsessed people. Your great grandpa started this journey, passed it to Grammy, she passed it to her kids (one of those is me) and now I’m doing my part to make sure you guys all have a special place in your heart for Disney and all its magic and wonder. I don’t know how the Disney-love will translate in your own lives as you grow up. I don’t know if you’ll find yourself saving your money to take another trip to the park or if you’ll be to every Disney movie on opening day, if you’ll have Disney decor throughout your home or if you’ll be more of a quiet and reserved fan. I’m aware of the possibility that you may not all be as Disney-crazed as some of the rest of this family, but as I said before, I just hope there is always a special spot inside of you that respects Disney and is able to identify the magic it brings into our lives.

Because Disney magic is raising you. You’re being built by Disney Magic. When I think of all the ways I want you to grow up and all the ways I want to be a good mom to you all, I find myself thinking of things I’ve learned from Disney. As silly as it sounds, its 1000% true.

Disney can teach you to dream. Disney can give you hope. Disney can remind you that there is good in the world and that most people are good. Disney can help you find joy. It can help you cope when you’re sad. It can teach you lifelong lessons and it can implant song lyrics into your mind that you’ll never forget. It can be a source of happiness. It can be a safe place you run to, to get away from reality. Disney can be a refuge. It can help you feel carefree when you are feeling weighted down. It can create magic in a regular day and a regular moment. Disney can help you embrace who you are and the unique, special individual you’re meant to be. Disney can help you change your point of view and look on the bright side. You’ll find things and characters you relate to. You’ll have moments in Disney Parks you reflect on for years and years.

Disney is a part of your childhood, I pray you always think of that with a smile on your face and are thankful for your Disney roots.

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Love, mom

Who Could Forget Minnie?

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Yesterday was Mickey’s 90th Birthday, but know who else had a birthday? His gal, Minnie, of course! I’m saddened that she so often gets overlooked. But hey, Minnie? I didn’t overlook you. I never will. 90 looks good on Minnie. She has aged gracefully, hasn’t she? I love Minnie. She is so stylish. She’s true to herself. She’s sweet. She stands up for herself. She gets the job done. She is a romantic. She is happy. My favorite thing about her is her talent at making everyone feel good about themselves. More people need to be like that. She is oh so fabulous and I hope her birthday was just that!

Happy Birthday, Minnie Mouse!

Happy Birthday Mickey Mouse!

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Happy 90th Birthday, Mickey Mouse!!!

This is hands down my favorite picture ever taken of Mickey Mouse. H was so excited and a little bit nervous to meet Mickey, but he ran right up to him and gave him a big hug. The two of them sat together in this hug for several minutes and it was so special. At one point, Mickey even tried to shoo us away, seeming to tell us that he’d just hang out with H the rest of the day.

This picture captures Mickey perfectly, to me. He is happy. He is accepting. He is loving. He is friendly. He is kind. He is there and makes you feel comfy and content. Call me silly, but Mickey Mouse is home. I am so grateful for this happy guy who I’ve known since birth. He’s been there with me in my life every step of the way and I am very pleased to know he’ll be there for all of my future steps as well. There is no one else like Mickey Mouse and there never will be.

Happy Birthday, pal. You’ve aged tremendously. You deserve all the magic, just like you’ve given the world.

Holidays in Disneyland!

They’re here!

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taken from the Disneyland website

The holidays are officially at Disneyland!

The holidays in Disneyland are as magical as you’d imagine it to be. There is extra magic in the air. The Festival of the Holidays goes from November 9th to January 8th.

Some holiday fun happening in the park during the holidays are:

A Christmas Fantasy Parade

It’s a Small World Holiday

Festival of Holidays (in DCA)

Mater’s Jingle Jamboree (DCA)

Luigi’s Joy to the Whirl (DCA)

Haunted Mansion Holiday (is still going)

Believe in Holiday Magic fireworks

Holiday Time at Disneyland Tour

Don’t forget all the amazing holiday themed food and the incredible decorations and overlays!

Happy Holidays!

Mickey’s 90th Spectacular!

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On November 4th, ABC aired Mickey’s 90th Spectacular. On the 18th of this month, Mickey Mouse turns 90 and this was his big birthday celebration on tv. Did you watch? It was amazing. If you didn’t watch it, I added a link to a way to watch it on the top line of this post, and if that doesn’t work for you then lots of it is on YouTube. Did you shed tears? I absolutely did.

While we were watching this I was thinking about how most people want to leave their mark on this world and be remembered somehow after they are gone. What an amazing legacy Walt Disney left behind! He gave us Mickey Mouse! I think he knew Mickey and the rest of the Disney world would be a gift to us, but I wonder if he knew just how impactful and magical it would all be to some people. I, for one, am forever grateful for Walt and for this world he created and I am especially thankful that he gave us my #1 favorite, most special icon, Mickey Mouse.

More Disney Love

I’ve already posted about going to Mickey’s Halloween Party during our most recent Disneyland trip, but I hadn’t posted about any other part of it. I don’t post about all of our trips to Disney, and I wasn’t planning on posting about this one (besides some specific posts for specific Disney topics) but some of these pictures are just too cute not to share. So here we are.

This trip has been anticipated since 2017’s October trip and it did not disappoint. I’m not going to go into detail because if you’ve read this blog for a while then you’ve heard me gush about Halloween time in Disneyland billions of times. But just know that it was exactly what I wanted. We had an amazing, magical time and my love for Disneyland is as strong and as passionate as ever.

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Mickey’s Halloween Party 2018

On October 19th it was finally our time to get down to Mickey’s Halloween Party this year. I plan to do a post at some point about the whole trip, but before Halloween happens then passes us by, I wanted to make sure I got a post up about our spooky, fun evening celebrating Halloween in Disneyland!

Lets start with costumes. For Halloween this year, we dressed up as some of the characters from Ratatouille. I was Colette, Wild Man was Linguini, H was Remy and E was Emile. If you ask me, it turned out great! It always feels good when you walk the park and get countless comments of admiration from people. (oh also, H had just woken up – very unhappily – from a nap when a lot of these pictures were taken)

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My mom and dad dressed up as Steam Boat Willie and Black and White Minnie. One of my sisters was Kuzco from Emperors New Groove and the other was Bo Peep from Toy Story (we found Woody and he loved her).

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The Cadaver Dans (regularly the Dapper Dans) perform out on Rivers of America during Mickey’s Halloween Party and its always one of my highlights of the party.

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The decorations and spooky effects, as usual were incredible. There is something extra magical about the park during the halloween party. Its amazing what Disney can do to the park. Ugh, I love it.

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The Trick-or-Treating was fun, but H got tired of it kind of fast so we didn’t hit all the different spots (ok by me) and instead we got in a bunch more rides! We still ended up with tons of candy too, so it was a win-win.

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Then there was the parade and firework show, also special to Mickey’s Halloween Party. The parade is my very favorite. The fireworks are also incredible. Its totally worth it to sit around for a while to claim a good spot for both of these events because you’re not going to see them anywhere else but during this party!

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It was a frightfully fun evening. I’m so glad we have this tradition of going to Disneyland Resort during Halloween time. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it a million times more, the best time to go to Disneyland Resort is during Halloween.

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What You Shouldn’t Miss at Disneyland Resort During Halloween

If you didn’t know already, let me fill you in real quick – I am obsessed with Disneyland, especially Disneyland during Halloween time. The season started on September 7th and goes until October 31st, so you still have time to go see Disneyland Resort during its very best time of year.

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We go a lot during the year, but we always make sure we go during Halloween Time for sure. Seriously, its the best. I wouldn’t lie to you. Because I’m getting antsy waiting for our trip to Disneyland coming up and its still just the beginning of the season, I wanted to share with you my five can’t miss list of things you have to do/see while you’re in Disneyland Resort for Halloween.

Mickey’s Halloween Party – Just so you know, Mickey’s Halloween Party is a separate ticket event. Meaning you have to buy another ticket for this party. Yes, its an added expense, but its worth every buck. When you attend Mickey’s Halloween Party you get to dress up in your Halloween Costume (all ages can do this! – but its not required, if thats not your cup of tea), and you can trick-or-treat around the park! Oh, and they do not skimp on the candy (but there are also some healthier options). There is also a special parade for Halloween which is…I don’t even know the appropriate words to describe this parade. Its phenomenal. I highly, highly recommend you watch it if you choose to go to the Party. There is also a special firework show! There are extra characters out and about in their adorable Halloween costumes, lots of villains, fun photo backdrops and ops all over.

Typically this party happens in Disneyland in the evening. Disneyland closes for everyone else and just people with tickets to this event are allowed in Disneyland. As for everyone else, they get to go hang out in California Adventure!

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Photo Ops – The photo ops aren’t just during Mickey’s Halloween Party. There are also so, so many cute holiday-themed spots to take your picture throughout both parks and Downtown Disney that aren’t special for the Halloween Party. My favorites are the giant pumpkin at the top of Main Street, all of Cars Land with their Haul-O-Ween overlay and the outside of Haunted Mansion, which is Haunted Mansion Holiday during September through December, which brings me to the next can’t miss thing…

Haunted Mansion Holiday – Through the Halloween and Christmas Seasons in Disneyland, Jack Skellington from Nightmare Before Christmas takes over Haunted Mansion, making it Haunted Mansion Holiday and its so much fun! The original Haunted Mansion is my very favorite attraction in Disneyland, but I’m ok with it not being its original spookiness for a few months because when Jack takes over, he does a great job! Its a perfect mix of Halloween and Christmas and its something that just can’t be missed.

All the Food – Meals, snacks and treats at Disneyland are undoubtably some of my favorite things about Disneyland Resort, and Disney really ups their game when it comes to holiday food. I’m contemplating doing a separate post all about the treats in Disneyland Resort during Halloween because they are phenomenal. They taste great and look magical.

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Cars Land/Haul-O-Ween – I still can’t get over how incredible the Cars Land overlay is. Haul-O-Ween in Radiator Screams is everything we never knew we needed. The attention to detail is ridiculous. You could spend hours in this land just oogling over all the decor. Lightning McQueen and some of his friends even come out to visit for pictures and are dressed up in their own Halloween costumes! Make sure you also check Radiator Screams out at night. The lighting is so cool. Lets face it, everything about Cars Land is cool at all times of the year, but especially September and October.

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The Halloween Time @ DLR Pump Up Post

Just in case you needed it, here is a post to get you pumped up for Halloween Time starting at Disneyland Resort! (disclaimer: a good chunk of these pictures are from Cars Land because I still can’t get over how awesome the overlay is there)

Halloween Season officially begins in Disneyland Resort today, September 7th, though decor, etc has been popping up for the last couple weeks. How excited are you? On a scale from 1-10, I’m definitely at a solid 100. I’ve said it a million times and I’ll say it again, Halloween Time at Disneyland Resort is the very best time to go to that magical park. I promise.

I’ve gathered several of my favorite Halloween Disneyland pictures for this post to get you all excited for your upcoming trip, or give you some motivation to get there. Or, if you can’t make it, then hopefully this can help fill that Disney void for you!

*Most of these are taken by my dad – he does such a good job.

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