Category Archives: General Disney

DIY Beauty and the Beast Guest Room




When we moved to a new house that had enough space for a guest room, I knew I wanted to theme the room with Be Our Guest from Beauty and the Beast.  It was easy to envision since the room was already painted Belle-ish yellow.  I didn’t want the room to be too obvious or over-the-top with the decor since most guests aren’t as big of Disney fans as we are – but those who are fans will pick up on the references pretty easily.

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The goal was to pick up items that fit the theme as I found them to get a good mix of interesting pieces.  This is a tough task for me because when I start a project I like finishing it and not letting it drag on forever.  But for this room I’m making an exception – I still need a clock with a Cogsworth feel and a desk lamp that would fit in an old French castle.

This candlestick holder was in a corner of a second hand store – it was old, dusty and dark brown but with a little gold spray paint it took on a Lumiere persona. It was only after painting it did I notice all the intricate woodwork details and it’s perfect! I can almost imagine it coming to life with it’s two outstretched arms.

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The next piece is not only fitting with the theme but functional: Mrs. Potts in a Scentsy warmer.  I love the pink color and how the top looks like a rose – absolutely perfect for the theme.

Mrs. Potts


When I saw this feather duster at Home Goods, I immediately thought of Fifi!!

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Once we had the shelf installed, I had my heart set on finding a gargoyle to perch on the edge.  I could not find a gargoyle for the life of me!! I looked in the garden section of home improvement stores and craft stores but with no luck.  My imagination of a gargoyle is a heavy stone statue and part of me started wondering if that was even safe to put on the shelf right above the head of our sleeping guests.  So I was excited to find a stuffed gargoyle in the last place I would have expected – the Eastern State Penitentiary.


The only thing I need to finish off the mantle is a rose….I saw a glass dome at IKEA so now I just need a non-cheesy looking fake rose, which is pretty hard to find.  But I’ll keep looking!

I kinda wanted a giant animal head to represent Gaston, but in the spirit of making guests feel comfortable, I settled for a picture that I found at Hobby Lobby.

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A chandelier would really put the finishing touch on the room, but until I find one small enough to hang, I like this painting from Home Goods.


Does anyone else do Disney theme rooms like this? What’s the theme?  Let me know in the comments, I’m always looking for understated Disney decorating ideas!



Disney vacation update – must see list (plus a line-cutter sighting!)

In my last post I wrote about the new attractions at Disney World that I was hoping to see on my recent visit.  Below is the rundown on everything I saw (and what I didn’t get to see – luckily that list is short!)

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party – This was definitely a highlight of the trip.  I will have to write a separate post to get into all the details, but I was pleasantly surprised that I felt like it was worth paying the extra ticket, which I was a little hesitant about. More details to come later this week!

Mickeys Very Merry Christmas Party

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Ride the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train – We rode the minetrain during the Christmas Party so the wait was only about 25 minutes, which took into account the guy who just cut in line a few people in front of us! I could not believe it – I’ve never seen a line-cutter at Disney World but a man cut across through the line, pretended to look at something and then just got in line and signaled his wife and kids to come over.  When the man behind the cutter asked if he just cut in line (which he obviously did) the cutter just proceeded to look at his phone and did not even acknowledge that anyone was talking! Unbelievable! Has anyone else seen something like this!? If so, did you do anything about it?  Vote in the poll below!

Festival of Fantasy Parade – We saw the parade and it was very entertaining, even though I’m not usually a big fan of the parades. My favorite was Flynn Rider flying on the swinging hammers – the float was really amazing because it had such huge moving parts!

Flynn Rider - Festival of Fantasy Parade

Flynn Rider – Festival of Fantasy Parade

Fire breathing dragon - Magic Kingdom Festival of Fantasy Parade

Fire breathing dragon – Magic Kingdom Festival of Fantasy Parade



Magic Kingdom Festival of Fantasy Parade

Magic Kingdom Festival of Fantasy Parade

Cinderella and Prince Charming

Cinderella and Prince Charming

Anna and Elsa - Festival of Fantasy Parade

Anna and Elsa – Festival of Fantasy Parade

Mickey at Festival of Fantasy Parade

Mickey at Festival of Fantasy Parade

Meet and greet with Hiro and Baymax from Big Hero 6 – This is one thing we didn’t get to do.  We waited in line for a while, but with the characters heading out on a break and our FastPass time at Toy Story Mania quickly approaching, I gave up on my hopes of squeezing Baymax.  I have to say, he was pretty amazing – he walked around and blinked, much more mobile than I thought he would be.

Frozen sing-along – Didn’t do this one either – we went to the Streets of America in Hollywood Studios and there was a giant mob of people in a roped off area that I assumed was the line so we decided in two seconds flat that the sing along wasn’t happening!

Downtown Disney – We took the ferry boat from Port Orleans – Riverside to Downtown Disney a few times and it was interesting to see the panorama view from the water of the changes that are happening.  The boat docked over close to the Saratoga Springs resort at the edge of the Marketplace.  We walked around and enjoyed the new stores – specifically at the Marketplace Co-Op. There’s a huge assortment of items from iPhone cases to Vera Bradley bags to home decor to sports apparel – truly something for everyone!

Maelstrom – So sad, the sign is gone and there’s no trace of Maelstrom.  But the giant troll is still in the Puffin’s Roost so hopefully he stays!

No more Maelstrom!

No more Maelstrom!

Memento Mori – This store wasn’t as big as I thought it would be – I was imagining something the size of the Tower of Terror store but it was much smaller.  A few spooky items that would probably be of interest to big fans of Haunted Mansion but not to most people.

Lastly, something that was not on my wish list but definitely the highlight of the trip – my husband got us a reservation at California Grill for our wedding anniversary!  We had an amazing seat by the window and since our reservation was at 5:15pm, we saw the sunset over the Grand Floridian and then at dusk the lights illuminated Cinderella Castle.  The view, the food and the service were all amazing, and my husband definitely earned some brownie points!  It’s going to be hard to out-do that anniversary dinner next year! More to come in a future post with all the delicious details!

California Grill

California Grill

Must-see changes at Disney World

I’m so lucky to have vacationed at Disney World at least once a year for the past 6 years.  For two of those years, we were annual passholders so we made the trip to Orlando several times a year.  One concern that I would have before each trip was that the magic would wear off and we’d have the ‘been there, done that’ feeling.  Luckily, that never happened because we made an effort on each trip to do something new, whether it was eating at a new restaurant, staying at a different resort, or going on a mission to find hidden Mickeys!

Our last trip to Disney was earlier this year in March but it seems like so much has changed since then!!  DHS hat – gone (pretty soon!) Maelstrom – gone! Studio Backlot Tour – gone!

Mickey's Sorcerer's Hat

Mickey’s Sorcerer’s Hat – Bye bye!

Bye Maelstrom!

Bye Maelstrom!

Bye Studio Backlot Tour!

See ya Studio Backlot Tour!

Now I’m worried that when we visit next month we won’t have time to see all of the new attractions that have popped up recently!  Here’s my must-see list to round out Disney vacations 2014:

  • Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party – this will be the first holiday party I’ve been to at Disney World and I’m so excited!
Christmas Minnie and Mickey

Christmas Minnie and Mickey

  • Ride the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train – When I heard about the ride catching fire I thought this was in jeopardy but my Fast Pass hasn’t been cancelled yet so I still plan on riding!
  • Festival of Fantasy Parade – This may have been around in March but I haven’t seen it yet – that dragon looks cool!
  • Meet and greet with Hiro and Baymax from Big Hero 6 – I just want to squeeze him.  Do they allow that?
  • Frozen sing-along – Even though I’m still mad at Frozen for causing the Maelstrom to close, I do want to sing….In Summmmerrrrrrrrrr!
  • Downtown Disney – The Marketplace Co-op could be dangerous on the wallet – so many good shopping opportunities!  I’m excited to take a stroll through downtown and see everything that has changed as they’re renovating the area.  Still deciding whether or not to eat at Splitsville, but I’m sure we’ll swing by and take a peek.
  • Maelstrom – I just want to see it one more time.  I know it’s closed, but I’ll drink a Carlsberg and toast the vikings and trolls alike.
  • Memento Mori – The new Haunted Mansion shop at Magic Kingdom.  I was looking at the Disney Parks blog and it seems like there are some very cool aspects to this shop.  Even though the ride genuinely scares me, I’m looking forward to seeing the shop!

    Haunted Mansion

    The Haunted Mansion

Is there anything I’m missing?  What other new must-see’s should I put on my list?  Let me know in the comments below!



Goodbye Maelstrom!

Long time no blog!  I haven’t written a post for a while, but it’s not because I haven’t been thinking about Disney World – I just couldn’t find time to get it down on paper.  I’ve been having a lot of fun co-hosting on the weekly WDW Fan Zone podcast that airs live every Friday night at 11pm – catch up on past episodes here!

I’ve been ready to get back to blogging over the past few weeks and I found out some news over the past few days that I knew I had to write about – my beloved Maelstrom will close next month!



According to Disney Parks Blog the Maelstrom in Epcot’s Norway pavilion is being replaced with a Frozen-themed ride! Continue reading

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