Thursday, March 10, 2011

Wished I Were in Disneyland

Winters are hard and when you live in the land of rain and gloom they are especially tough. There are days I would give just about anything for a bit of warmth and sunshine. It doesn't take long before I realize that all I have to do is get on a plane and fly south to "The Happiest Place on Earth."

Oh, how I wished that I was there. Unfortunatley for does not grow on trees and I can't sprout wings and fly. This became a moment of crisis for me. How was I going to experience Disneyland without even being able to be there in person? Then my husband suggested I take a trip to the nearest Disney Store.

Mind you nearest isn't really the right word. While I found the nearest one to me, it was still over 85 miles away. But I enjoyed every minute of it and decided that I needed to get there more often. The staff there was simply great.

We left the house early that Saturday morning and drove for an hour and a half to reach our destination. Once there we stood outside of the store waiting for them to open. Upon entering we discovered that it was Agent P day and Ainsley was given a mask that took her a bit to warm up to. Once she decided wearing it might be was difficult to get her to take it off.

There were many things that brought me back to my vacations spent in Disneyland. The costumes were cute and I wished that I had dressed Ainsley in one of hers from home. I would have bought her the new Rapunzel costume, but they were sold out of her size that day. It was adorable and I am contemplating buying online instead of waiting for our next trip to Disneyland.

Ainsley was able to find some lesser known characters and completely fell in love with a life size version of Bolt. Needless to say, we left with a smaller version that was easier on my pocket book.

Will I go back? You bet. I can't wait until my next trip that store.

Until Next Time,

Disney Dining Plans

Each time we visit Disneyland we try to eat somewhere we haven't eaten before. Of course, we always eat at our favorite spots, but it is always fun to try something new. One of the first questions I had on our trip in September of 2009 was "Should we buy the Disney Dining Plan?"

I asked around and read everything I could on the Internet about it. There wasn't a whole lot. I found things about Disney World, but not about Disneyland. Faced with a choice we decided to purchase it. Why? Well, simply, I wanted to have our food paid for prior to our arrival. Relieved with my choice I set out to plan where we would eat.

2009 Meal Plan

Let me warn you, we wanted to eat every meal in Disneyland. This was our daughter's first trip and we wanted her to experience all that Disneyland had to offer. As I sat down to plan all of our meals I realized pretty quickly that the Disney Dining Plan was not going to pay for everything. We would need more money than I thought. The Meal plan posted here shows the plan I made. If there is a dollar amount listed then that is what I estimated it would cost without the meal plan. Some meals state that we used the meal plan, but would also need additional money. If it just says meal plan, then my estimation was that the meal plan would be sufficient.

Each Disney Dining Plan provides you with a book of vouchers. Each voucher is worth a certain dollar amount. You will be able to use different vouchers together (meaning you can use a snack voucher with a dinner voucher, etc.). If your meal is less than the vouchers you provide to the cast member then change will be given in the form of actual cash. However, most vouchers will not cover the actual price of one persons meal. Most times Ainsley and I shared a meal to reduce our costs a bit.

Did we stick to the meal plan I prepared? For the most part, yes. However, I have learned a few things along the way. Ainsley does better if we let her decide when we are going to eat. Sometimes that isn't always possible, but we try to stay flexible. Meal plans are still important, because they help you budget. Consequently, I still make them. If you would like my vacation meal planner as a Word document, send me a message. I will be glad to share it with you.

Want to check out the Disney Dining Plan information click here

Until Next Time,