Friday, April 25, 2014

Speechless: The Disney Social Media Moms Celebration 2014 {#DisneySMMoms}

Once upon a time, in a land far, far away, an invitation was sent.

Not by horse-drawn carriage, not by the order of the king, but, being the modern times in which we live, by email.

And, while I may not remember what thoughts ran through my head when I saw the look on my true love's face as he stood waiting for me at the altar or when my firstborn child was placed in my arms for the first time, every detail of when I opened that email is still crystal clear in my mind.

DisneySMMoms invitation

One of the only family-friendly conferences for those of us in social media, the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration is a one-of-a-kind, invite-only, premier event based on learning, networking, inspiration and, of course, the magic of Disney.

Did I want to attend the 5th annual Celebration and take my first trip to Disneyland Resort in California? Is that really even a question?!

Disney welcome

While the DisneySMMoms Celebration itself lasts three days, my family turned this opportunity into a 7-day event to truly immerse ourselves in all things Disneyland. After all, between Disneyland Park (the original Disney theme park), the reimagined Disney California Adventure Park, the Downtown Disney district and our stay at Disneyland Hotel putting everything within walking distance, this was easily going to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

We began at registration, something that might typically be mundane, but was instead already fun and family-friendly.

The girls were thrilled to already have the opportunity to meet Mickey Mouse himself...

meeting mickey mouse well as Chip and Dale.

meeting chip and dale

These two jokester chipmunks then hung out with us a little more as we learned about the Disney Wild About Safety campaign, a creative and fun program designed to help kids learn and understand the importance of being safe in all sorts of situations.

Disney wild about safety

While it's hard to top getting to hang out with a few of our favorite Disney buddies, other registration highlights included visiting the New Balance station to see their incredible line of Disney-themed running shoes...

Disney New Balance shoes well as check-in and pick up the supplies I needed to participate in a two-mile runDisney event a few mornings away.

From Disney apps to in-home innovations (and much more), the room was filled with information, ideas and technology that are available to teach as well as enhance all of our lives!

Disney apps

Whew! After we made it through registration and checked in to the gorgeous Disneyland Hotel, it was time to spend the afternoon getting to know the Happiest Place on Earth.

Walt Disney statue

Are there words to accurately sum up how it feels to visit Disneyland for the very first time? To walk through those gates and know that one man and one mouse started it all right on this spot? And to know that, as much as my eyes were open to see anything and everything, that it was made infinitely better by being able to see my children experience it as well?

After hours spent riding rides, watching shows, celebrating the 50th anniversary of It's A Small World, meeting even more characters, and more...

Disneyland CA was time to take part in the opening events of the DisneySMMoms Celebration.

We began with a pre-dinner cocktail hour sponsored by the awesome folks at Coppertone, who not only threw a great event, but gave us the opportunity to hear about (and try out) many of their fabulous new products.

At the same time, we heard from Leanne Jakubowski (Director, Social Media), Michele Himmelburg (Director, Disneyland PR) and Michael Colglazier (Disney Resort President), who welcomed us and made us all even more excited about what was in store for the rest of the weekend (if that was even possible).

DisneySMMoms Coppertone

Following this reception, we met up with our families and headed to Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree for a buffet-style dinner filled with music, characters, face painting, magic tricks, a scavenger hunt and more. Disney Magic of Healthy Living was also there to introduce us to the new TRYit! food line of  healthy on-the-go snack options for kids!

DisneySMMoms Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree

How is it possible that we had been at Disneyland Resort for less than 24 hours but were already having the time of our lives meeting new friends, catching up with old ones and being a part of the wonder and magic of Disney? Could this get any better?

Stay tuned to find out and for more of our Disney Social Media Moms Celebration 2014 fun, learning and inspiration!

I was invited to attend the DSMM Celebration. I paid my own conference fees and received gifts during the conference. All opinions, experiences and thoughts are my own. Special thanks to Josh Hallett, the official DisneySMMoms photographer, for the use of many of his amazing photographs.


Heather @ Girl Gone Mom said...

Yay! I'm so glad you got to go! We actually registered but then had to cancel. Our luck needs to change soon!!

It looks like an amazing time and I hope to one day check out Disney land to see how it compares with WDW.

scottsgal said...

Looking forward to reading about your wonderful trip! Never been to Disneyland in CA but been to Disney World so many times and LOVE it! Your pictures are great - your girls look so excited.

Mel at Adventures of Mel said...

It really looked like everyone was having so much fun; loved seeing all the photos coming through my feed! Your photos are wonderful. And those Disney themed shoes are awesome! I love that statue of Walt Disney and Mickey.... it's amazing to see how far one man's dreams have come.

jesicaj1 said...

I felt the same was so much fun taking in all that Disneyland had to offer, and listening to all the wonderful speakers. It looks like you had such a great time with your family as well. And apparently we never found Rapunzel because that is an awesome pic and I don't remember seeing her!

Unknown said...

It looks like y'all had a blast. I love the pictures. The picture of the kids with the Chipmunks are priceless.

Jen W. said...

What fun! It looks like you had a blast and got to do some very fun things.

Unknown said...

Looks like you guys had a blast! I can't wait to take Gaby to Disney for the first time!

Michelle Pegram said...

So awesome that you got to go, looks like it was a ton of fun!

Lisa said...

Looks like you had an awesome time!!

Jen - Life With Levi said...

I remember visiting with chip & Dale on MY first visit to Disney World! how awesome that your family got to enjoy this with you.

slehan said...

I'm glad your family could turn it into a 7 day Disney Adventure. Looks like so much fun.

slehan at juno dot com

Donna said...

How wonderful for you and your family! Looks like an amazing time!

Jennifer @ Mom Spotted said...

What an amazing opportunity! I'm glad your family had such a wonderful time!

Unknown said...

I am so glad you had the chance to go! I love Disneyland, it's such a magical place.

Unknown said...

SO COOL that you got to do that! This is one of my bucket list desires. :)

sgumer said...

looks like it was a lot of fun for the kids just as much as it was for the adults. wish i was there with the family.

Unknown said...

How incredibly exciting. I would love to run through Disneyland. I have such fond memories of the place as a child but running through would be a whole new level.

Unknown said...

It looks and sounds like you had an amazing time, I look forward to reading the next installment. Thank you for sharing this post.

Anonymous said...

How exciting! What a wonderful opportunity for all of you. I would be like a child visiting, since we have never been.