Whether you're an über-fan or simply find it difficult to name your child's favorite character without realizing that the car or toy or princess or superhero is connected back to that same mouse, Disney is a part of our lives and our culture that has always been special.
And, while I can't say that I was married on Disney property or have a Disney tattoo, I have just as much of a soft spot for the wonder, care and imagination that goes into everything and anything Disney — even more now that I can see it through the eyes of my children.
Therefore, when it was time to...
...there wasn't any doubt that we would love to join in and host a Disney Side @Home Celebration!
Disney's theme for 2014, they have defined "Disney Side" as that fun-loving adventurous spirit that comes out to play when you're feeling the Disney magic! Whether you show your Disney Side through fashion, food, or your favorite characters, or frequent visits to Disney Parks, it's time to let it shine. Gather your fellow Disney fans, grab your Mickey ears and prepare to sprinkle some pixie dust on those who cross your path as you let your Disney Side take over!
No matter where you search for #DisneySide (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and more) or how many times you visit DisneySide.com, you're sure to love seeing all of the fantastic ways that people near and far are showing off their Disney spirit!
As for us, we were already excited to start inviting friends over for a Disney-themed celebration... and then a box of goodies arrived that took all of our plans to an entirely new level.
Between school and busy schedules, it is hard to find a time to host a full-on party, so we opted to have a lunchtime Disney gathering with some of our favorite moms and kids. Is there anything that isn't made more enjoyable when Mickey Mouse is involved?
Starting with the Disney decorations and accessories that came with our kit...
...it was time to focus on the food.
Because, c'mon. Isn't one of the best parts of visiting a Disney park seeing the variety of Mickey-shaped food in all sorts and sizes?
While I wasn't planning on recreating my daughters' favorite Mickey Mouse ice cream bars (that result in chocolate all over their faces), I did manage to include enough "hidden Mickeys" on the buffet that the kids' eyes lit up as they pointed out each one.
|The Mickey chicken nuggets were from Costco and the cheese and Rice Krispies treats were cut with a cookie cutter!|
Needless to say, the kids as well as the adults were very happy to return to refill their plates and cups in between giggles and chatting and complete Disney happiness.
Plus, although it pains me to admit that I haven't experienced a true Disney Dole Whip, I was excited to use the recipe they sent over to recreate this legendary treat right in my own blender!
Frozen Pineapple Whip
2 cups frozen pineapple
1/4 cup milk
1/16 tsp salt
2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
With frozen pineapple as the main ingredient, it only took a few minutes to blend up these five ingredients and end up with a creamy, sweet, extremely yummy dish!
Throw in games like Disney Bingo...
...and Disney Eye Found It...
...and the afternoon was declared a definite success. If we had had more time, there would have also been Disney crafts, Disney movies, Disney make-believe... the options are endless and I have no doubt that we'll be including them into future parties!
Plus, if we ever manage to get through our own list of ideas, there is no shortage of recipes, activities, themes and more to inspire just about anyone at DisneySideCelebrations.com. There is absolutely something for everyone!
As much fun as our simple (but still completely enjoyable) Disney Side @Home Celebration was, it did have the unfortunate side effect of making us yearn for a bit of the real thing. My girls are lucky enough that they have been to Disney World more than once, but there have been multiple requests to visit Disneyland that have, until now, gone unanswered.
But that's all going to change next month, when my husband and I are surprising the girls with a trip to Anaheim as I attend the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration conference!
An invitation-only event, the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration conference is an extremely coveted, unique, blogger/family conference held annually at one of the Parks where Disney hosts guests like only they can.
After having heard that it is the most incredible, amazing experience for the past few years, I couldn't have been more surprised and honored when an invitation to this year's event showed up with my name on it. I'm thrilled that my family will get to be a part of the incredible happenings for 2014... and can't wait to see the looks on my kids' faces when they realize that they're going to Disneyland!
We've clearly got Disney on the brain around here, how do you show your Disney Side?
Other than the hostess gift pack I received from Disney Parks and Mom Select in order to facilitate and inspire our party, I was not compensated or enticed to do this post in any way. This post is solely my honest opinion about our #DisneySide!