Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Changes Coming to Downtown Disney

Much like Disneyland itself, Downtown Disney needs to change and evolve to make sure it stays one of the major attractions in the area. Lots of changes are coming, and we've got them all here for you in one convenient package! What are you most excited to see this year?

1. Splitsville

The luxury bowling alley and restaurant will open SOON - January 29! This is a big hit at Disney Springs in Florida, so we're excited to see how it does in the old House of Blues space here in California.

(If you get our blog via email and can't see the above video, check it out here)

2. Ballast Point Brewery

Since the surprise announcement that the Build-A-Bear Workshop and RideMakerz stores would be closing at the end of 2017, we've been wondering what would take their place. And the answer! It's been officially announced that the San Diego based brewery/restaurant will be moving in. Although its a brewery its still considered to be a very family friendly place, with delicious food for everyone. Check out the menu we found online for their San Diego location.

Check it out for yourself here
No word yet on an opening date. We just know construction will start "soon." We'll keep you posted!

3. World of Disney Updates

The World of Disney store is enormous and mostly unchanged since it opened in 2001. Its getting some much needed love this year. The work will be done in different phases so that the store can remain open.

4. Don't Forget More Beer!

Black Tap Craft Burgers and Beer will be opening sometime this year in the space right next to Ballast Point (Ooh! Competition!). With four locations in New York and one in Las Vegas, this casual burger joint has some pretty amazing burgers (including a vegan burger and even a falafel burger!) and some pretty wild milkshakes. Take a look at this shake that's been designed for Downtown Disney's distinct menu.

Credit to Disney Parks Blog

5. Disney Home!

This has to be our personal favorite new thing coming to Downtown Disney. Disney Home will be a store entirely devoted to Disney Home Goods. It'll be in the old D Street location, and opens sometime in February. Who's excited??

Photo from Disney Parks Blog

Thursday, January 18, 2018

DIY Minnie Ears

If you're like me, you're always looking on Etsy and other cute online shops at the amazing handmade ears, or browsing Shop Disney for the latest ear designs. Before my last Disneyland trip, I decided to try making my own! I've done it before, but even though they were cute, they didn't hold up well during travel so I went for a sturdier design with a thicker headband that I covered with fabric so that the glue would hold on better. If you want to see the Sorcerer Mickey Ears I tried last time, check them out here!

(As a heads up, now that the hubby has a 3D Printer, I'm going to be trying this again soon but with 3D printed designs on the ears! Keep an eye out for that one.)


Headband, glue gun, fabric, tulle, ribbon, scissors, ears (I used the ears from an actual old Mickey hat from Disneyland, but you can also trace the shape and cut it out from cardboard or foam).

Special Supplies:

Notebook (so I could write this all up for you!), and coffee!

Step 1: Cut!

Cut a square of fabric a little larger than the size of your ears

Step 2: Glue

Fully cover the front side of the ears glue down the edges on the back (we'll cover that up later)

Step 3: Make sure you have enough glue sticks for your glue gun!

I didn't do Step 3, which is why my nice, cute, blog photo friendly workspace isn't in any of the rest of these pics. I had to head out to the garage where my husband keeps his insanely hot, industrial strength glue gun that I burnt my finger on. (Sad face)

Step 4: The Backside of Ears (like the backside of water...get it? get it?)

Trace the shape of the back of your ears, cut, and glue down to cover the overlapped fabric from the front. 

Step 5: Pretty Edge Ribbon

I bought some silver ribbon that could go around the outside of the ears, since I knew I'd have thick sides from the plastic ears. Cut to size and glue around the outsides.

Step 6: Wrap the Headband

Cut a thin, long strip of fabric. Glue one end down, then wrap the fabric around. Add more glue as you need it. 

Step 7: Attach Your Ears

More gluing!

Step 8: Make Your Bow
Cut a long length of ribbon and fold it over itself four or five times. Glue the end down just a little bit so it stays together. Then take another length of ribbon and wrap it around the middle, to make the bow shape. Glue it down and you're all done!

What do you think? Its not too hard and I got through it with only one change of scenery and one injury. 

Friday, January 5, 2018

Disneyland Fast Facts: 5th Edition

Who's ready for some more Disneyland facts? We've been working hard to assemble new and fun info that we promise you doesn't include the wild cats, the Matterhorn basketball court, or the "fastest" teacup. For more of our Disneyland Fast Facts, check out Volumes 1, 2, 3, and 4!

1. Casey Jr. Car Origin Story

You might already know that King Arthur's Carousel was originally a Canadian carousel that Walt Disney purchased, flew to California, and redesigned. But did you know that the pink and blue cars on Casey Jr Circus Train (the ones that surround the animal cages) were initially parts of that same original carousel?

2. Weather Balloon

When you're waiting for the fireworks, watch out for a white balloon heading up into the sky. It's how Disneyland is able to tell if there are high winds that might cause them to cancel the show!

3. Cast Members Permanent Mark on Star Wars Land (ok, ok, "Galaxy's Edge")

Photo Credit: Disney Parks Blog
My personal beef with the name "Galaxy's Edge" aside, did you know Cast Members were brought in to sign the highest point of the new and highly anticipated land before it was put in place? How amazing would it be to know you'll be a part of that history forever?

4. Walt's Lamp Gets Moved!

Photo Credit: Finding Mickey
Its pretty common knowledge that the lamp in Walt's apartment above the Main Street Fire Station is kept on to symbolize his presence in the park. But have you noticed that there's a small Christmas tree in its place during the holiday season? Ever wonder what happens to Walt’s lamp? It's actually moved down the street to the window named after his father, Elias!

5. Hidden Frogs

Photo Credit: Disney Food Blog
We're used to hidden Mickeys, but have you noticed the hidden Tiana and Naveen from Princess and the Frog? They live in the window of Cafe Orleans in New Orleans Square.

6. Unlucky 13!

Photo Credit: Disney

The Paradise Pier hotel is one of the only hotels in the Western Hemisphere to have a 13th floor! Most hotels go straight from 12 to 14, because 13 is commonly considered to be unlucky, but not the Paradise Pier! (It's possibly because the original owners, long before Disney bought the property, were from Japan, where 13 isn't unlucky.)

7. Fireworks History

Who remembers when Tinkerbell used to go barreling across the sky during the fireworks with nothing more than gravity to guide her?? Well, when you're going up the second hill on Thunder Mountain, look off to the right to find her old tree house/landing pad!

8. Hidden Groot? 

How closely do you pay attention when you're looking through the Disneyland app? Be sure to zoom in on Mission Breakout for a fun surprise!

9. Fountain of Youth

Photo Credit: thebigdland on Instagram

Have you found the Fountain of Youth? Take a closer look next time you're on Pirate's Lair/Tom Sawyer's Island!

10. Pixar Shout Out

Photo Credit: Finding Mickey

Next time you're in CarsLand visiting Lizzie's shop, Radiator Springs Curios, look up at her snow globe collection! The snowman snow globe from the 1989 Pixar short "Knick Knack" is there!