Leaving Tomorrow!

We leave tomorrow and so much to do. I plan to take video this trip to share some of our experiences and going better prepared than last time. I also figured out how to blog from my phone while are the park so I can share interesting finds on the spot.

Upon our return we will have a giveaway! Who doesn't love giveaways? Be sure to stay tuned for your chance to win!

Olivia Vidal
© 2011


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A couple weeks ago we got that brown envelope we wait patiently for every month. A new movie from the Disney Movie Club. And with spring in the air, you just hope you will get twitterpated too.

Flower: Well! What's the matter with them?
Thumper: Why are they acting that way?
Friend Owl: Why, don't you know? They're twitterpated.
Flower, Bambi, Thumper: Twitterpated?
Friend Owl: Yes. Nearly everybody gets twitterpated in the springtime. For example: You're walking along, minding your own business. You're looking neither to the left, nor to the right, when all of a sudden you run smack into a pretty face. Woo-woo! You begin to get weak in the knees. Your head's in a whirl. And then you feel light as a feather, and before you know it, you're walking on air. And then you know what? You're knocked for a loop, and you completely lose your head!
Thumper: Gosh, that's awful.
Flower: Gee whiz.
Bambi: Terrible!
Friend Owl: And that ain't all. It could happen to anyone, so you'd better be careful.
Friend Owl: It could happen to you...
Friend Owl: ... or you, or even...
Friend Owl: Yes, it could even happen to you!
Thumper: Well, it's not gonna happen to me.
Bambi: Me neither.
Flower: Me neither.

Olivia's Disney Adventures
© 2011


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Become a Fan

You can now find us on Facebook. Now you can stay up to date on all of Olivia's Disney Adventures. You don't want to miss anything. Many fun things coming your way!

Olivia Vidal
© 2011


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Take a piece of Disney home

Souvenir shopping is so much fun. The Disneyland resort has some amazing items to purchase. Shopping is best during the early part of the day and during parades or fireworks. This is when the shops are least busy. The last couple hours of the day are hectic and you are fighting the crowds.

Now I hate carrying around my purchases so naturally I think shop at the end. Not to worry. If you are staying at a resort hotel you can have these sent over to your hotel. That really makes shopping easy.

Even if you are not staying at a resort hotel you can utilize a great service offered at the Disneyland resort. The Disneyland resort offers a Package Check service. Check your purchases in so you don't have to carry these around and pick them up when you are ready to leave.

You can check your items in at:

  • Engine Ear Toys in Disney California Adventure Park
  • Newsstand at Disneyland Park
  • The Star Trader at Disneyland Park
  • Pioneer Mercantile at Disneyland Park
How we choose to shop for souvenirs can be different from others. The first day we usually choose a hat. This way we can enjoy our special hat and wear during pictures if we choose.

We window shop the rest of the time looking for exactly what we want to take home instead of impulse buying. On our trips we tend to have a budget for souvenirs so impulse buying is not encouraged. The last day at the resort is when we make our purchases. We have seen it all and know what it is we want. I don't know how many times my son sees a sweatshirt and has to have it. We politely remind him to wait and see what else is out there. He almost always finds something better by the last day. One time his first choice is what he ended up with from the World of Disney but by the last day it had gone on sale so he had a little extra to spend.

If we come across that must have that just cannot wait until our last day we will use the package check service.


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Packing Tips

When traveling I like to make a packing list. Sometimes these can be annoying and time consuming I know but they are very helpful when getting everything ready and making any last minute trips before you leave. I for one am not a big fan of having to run to the store for simple things such as socks, sunglasses, or even my favorite shampoo because I forgot.

This is how I start my packing list:

    * Pants x___ days
    * Shorts x___ days
    * Shirts x___ days
    * Socks x__ days
    * Underwear x__ days
    * Light jacket
    * Heavy jacket
    * Tennis shoes
    * Sandals
    * Swim shoes or flip flops
    * Swimwear


    * Shampoo
    * Conditioner
    * Deodorant
    * Hairspray
    * Toothpaste
    * Mouthwash
    * Body wash
    * Perfume or cologne
    * Razor
    * Hair Dryer
    * Curling iron
    * Feminine products
    * Makeup case
    * Toilet paper (I always travel with a roll when driving. You never know when you will need this)
    * Facial tissue
    * Hair items such as heandbands, ponytail holders, bobby pins

General Items:

    * Backpack to carry essentials
    *  Zip lock bags - we use these for our cell phones and camera when riding water rides. We also use these to take leftovers with us after meals.
    * Sunscreen
    * Hats
    * Sunglasses
    * Comfortable walking shoes
    * Backpack to carry essentials
    * Toys for younger children
    * Family's and friends' mailing addresses
    * Postage stamps for postcards and letters
    * Digital camera
    * Battery charger and extra memory card for digital camera
    * Video camera
    * Prescription medications ( in their original prescription bottle especially when traveling by air)
    * Over the counter medications (tylenol, benadryl, tums, pepto bismal)
    * Glasses
    * Cell phone charger (including car charger)
    * Umbrella (just in case you encounter rain. These are available for purchase at the parks in the event rain occurs but it is easier to start off with one and saves money)
    * Small first aid kit (I found one at Walmart where travel size items are found for $1. Just need something simple that includes bandaids and alcohol wipes. There are first aid locations in Disneyland and Disneys California Adventure)
    * Hand sanitizer (You will have your hands on many rails that others are touching. You will want to use hand sanitizer at least a few times a day)
    * Baby wipes or wet wipes (for all ages not just children. Helpful with those little accidents)
    * Print out of all reservations and confirmation numbers
    * Phone numbers and addresses of hotels and restaurants
    * Plastic bag for dirty clothes

Prior to leaving call your credit card company and bank to let them know of your travel plans. Unusual activity will flag your account and can result in your cards being put on a security hold.

When traveling my air you need to make sure you have all IDs and birth certificates available for checking. Also be sure to have cash on hand to tip shuttle/cab drivers and curbside baggage handlers.

If you are like the other one million people with black luggage use something to mark your bag to stand out. The last few times I have been to the airport traveling myself or picking someone up, there was a ton of black bags. Add colorful tags, colored duct tape to mark the sides, add appliques or other fun patches. Something that personalizes and make these stand out. If you are shopping for new luggage I highly recommend you choose another color. It is easy to end up with the wrong bags.

Pack an extra bag to bring home those souvenirs. This is one I forgot the first couple times and scrambled to stuff them in the bags. I even went as far as purchasing another bag from the hotel to carry home our special items. We learned quick to bring that extra bag and account for it when traveling by air so we were not over our bag limit.

This is just a basic list for packing and your needs may be different. Create a simple list on your computer and print out one for each family member.


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Disney Dream Portrait Series by Annie Leibovitz’s

Have you seen these amazing shots?

Where Magic Speaks, Even When You’re Not The Fairest Of Them All

Breathtaking is the only thing that comes to mind. I love these! Until this past week I did not know about these and the ones done previously. Where have I been!?

Here are some of my favorite images.

Where Wonderland Is Your Destiny

Where Imagination Saves The Day

Where The Magic Begins 

Where You Never Have To Grow Up

Where Every Cinderella Story Comes True

These are part of a Disney campaign and at this point I am not certain these can be purchased as wall art. If they can be, I will find out and look to make some purchases myself. I would love to have a couple of these adorn the walls of my home.

*Pictures are property of Disney


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Disneyland Stick Figure Family Creator

How fun! I found this on the Disneyland Facebook page. The Disneyland Stick Figure Family Creator application.  I made a picture of our little family. With our trip just a few weeks away what better way to get in the mood.

Create yours on the Disneyland Facebook page at

*Pictures are property of Olivia's Disney Adventures and are not to be reproduced or distributed without permission of Olivia's Disney Adventures


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Dining Tips

I love love love eating in the park. There is nothing like a Disneyland churro, sharing a turkey leg, or relaxing on the patio with a monte cristo.

We like to set a budget for our daily eating so we keep our trip affordable. $50 a day for teens and adults seem to work out best for us. About half that works for younger children. Your needs may be higher or lower.

Here is some of what we do to stay within a budget.

When staying at an area hotel, utilize those free continental breakfasts. A juice and a danish is great for starting out the day and holding back hunger until lunch time. If your hotel does not offer free breakfast, pick up an apple or other fruit in the Disneyland park. You can also visit the local grocery store and pick up granola bars.

Eating light can really help when it comes to lunch. The busiest times to eat lunch are between 12p-3p. Having that light breakfast will allow you to eat an early lunch around 11a and help avoid that rush. We like to share a turkey leg and a large soda. No point in purchasing everyone a large drink since you have to make sure it is gone before you hit the next ride. Besides, it fills us up and can make those longer lines torture as you do the potty dance. We purchase a bottle of water in the beginning of the day and refill as needed so we also keep that soda cost down. You can often find us ordering off the kids menu at the various quick service locations. I love the chicken nugget meal at the Tomorrowland Terrace. Plus it comes with a juice box. If we decide to have soda instead, we buy a large to share and save our juice box for later.

The Bengal BBQ is a great place to have a light lunch. Grab a skewer or 2 and you are set. The jalapeno cheese pretzel is sooo good. Not spicy for those concerned. I can't do spicy and I can eat these. They make a great snack too but we share one when we order skewers too.

When dining at the Orleans Cafe we tend to share dishes. A cup of gumbo and a monte cristo is just the ticket for a reasonable lunch. When we do have our own lunches, we don't usually finish. Having a ziplock baggie in our backpack comes in handy to take along half a sandwich and the fruit to snack on later in the day. Don't forget to order that special juice for the kids (adults can order one too). You can receive a light up Tinkerbell or Buzz Lightyear to show off after the sun goes down.

Dinner time is where we tend to splurge. We do our best to make this a late lunch or early dinner and eat about 4p.Taking in some BBQ at Big Thunder Ranch. It is all you can eat and very tasty. The experience is so much fun. You can eat things like bbq ribs, bbq chicken, cornbread, baked beans. All served family style in buckets and you get jars for glasses. So grab your hats and bring an empty stomach. You will need reservations to make sure to call well in advanced.

You can also hop on the monorail and head on over to Goofy's Kitchen for some character dining. I LOVE Goofy's Kitchen! There is nothing like it. The energy is pumped, the food is fantastic, and getting that personal time with the characters is amazing. One of my fondest memories of Disneyland is at Goofy's Kitchen. When my son was 7 we visited Goofy's Kitchen for the very first time. He walked in wearing his pirate gear and talking with goofy when all the sudden Captain Hook comes strolling by to start trouble. Well my son and goofy was not about to let that happen so my son drew his sword, goofy grabbed the sheath, and a sword fight began. Priceless! (If I have the picture handy I would share with you but not sure where it is hiding). Goofy's Kitchen also requires reservations so please make those in advanced.

This next trip we will be doing something we have never done. Eat at the Blue Bayou. You can even share a plate. Now it does state it will cost an additional $12 to share but everyone who has ever done this has never been charged. When I was little I remember the smell of spaghetti as we floated by on our journey through the pirate world. They no longer serve spaghetti but that doesn't erase the memory.A tip everyone offers us is arrive early for your reservation and request a table near the water. You cannot ask for this at the time of your reservation (called Disney dining to confirm and they are correct) but you can before your meal. This can add additional time to your reservation as you await a table to clear so be prepared for this.,

Cocina Cucamonga Grill in Disney's California Adventure is a favorite of ours. You get a filling meal for a great price. Again we tend to share these but it does make a great dinner. One of my husbands favorite park about dining in DCA is you have the option of an alcoholic beverage.

Want to eat outside of Disneyland? Take a stroll in Downtown Disney for more great dining options. ESPN Zone is fun for everyone! Games upstairs and good food downstairs. Rainforest Cafe is also fun. The atmosphere is fantastic. There is so much to see. Don't forget to stop in their shop afterward for a gift or 2.

One dining option we use at least twice during our Disneyland trips is a visit to In n Out burger. I grew up on these and can never get enough when in California. It is a couple miles away from the resort so if you do not have a vehicle to use this may not work in your favor. If you do have a vehicle, make a visit. This is a treat for us and helps keep that budget down so we can splurge on other days.

There is also great options all around the park. To save a few extra dollars go to the Entertainment Book website and order an area book for discounts You can even look at some of the coupons available to see if this is a good option for you. Me personally I don't use this because we do so much in the park eating or eating outside the area its just not an option for us. I know many who do use this and it works great for them.

When it comes to snacking:

In Disneyland they have a great chocolate chip cookie. They even won an award for this cookie. Grab one to share.

Mint juleps (non-alcoholic) and fritters make a great late night snack. Find these at the Mint Julep Bar in New Orleans Square.

Who doesn't love candy apples? Grabbing a Mickey or Minnie candy apple to share is a great treat. One is enough for 4 people to share.

And my all-time favorite snack/treat is a Dole whip float. That creamy pineapple soft serve and that sweet juice. You can only get this treat in Disneyland so it is truly a special treat. Enjoy one while waiting for the next show at the Tiki Room (tip: whenever ordering from the Tiki Bar always go into the waiting area for the Tiki Room. There is almost never a line when they outside is usually a long one)

Visit TheMouseForLess and you can view the various menus across the Disneyland resort. Not only can you see a menu of a restaurant you have been wanting to try but you can view prices. Print these out and share with your family when planning your next Disneyland trip.

Remember almost all restaurants on the Disneyland resort property require reservations. You can call up to 60 days prior to your trip.

(714) 781-DINE or (714) 781-3463   

Use those phone features to store this number for last minute reservations (sometimes you can get same day seating at your favorite restaurant). Also use that calendar to store your reservations and receive alerts when your reservation time is near. I set mine for 60 minutes prior so we can get through those lines or begin making our way towards the restaurant.

*Pictures are property of Olivia's Disney Adventures and are not to be reproduced or distributed without permission of Olivia's Disney Adventures


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