Capturing Magic Outside the Theme Parks

Posted on by Beth in Characters, Dining, Disney World, Photography Leave a comment

Capturing Magic Outside the Theme Parks














One of my most memorable vacations was during Spring Break in 2012. I had just wrapped up a major volunteer job that consumed a great deal of my time and energy, and I was ready for some warm sunshine and time away with my kids. A Disney Parks vacation was not in the budget, but I was wanting to be around the magic and the fun that is found in Walt Disney World. So I booked a 4-day, 3-night trip after I found an awesome deal on Priceline for the Omni at ChampionsGate. We had access to beautiful amenities, a lazy river pool, and a fifteen minute drive to The World. With four kids, it was definitely budget friendly.

This might not be the ideal Disney trip for many people, but if you have to go years between theme park vacations, or you are looking for a quick getaway that includes some Disney magic, you might want to give it serious thought. This kind of vacation can work especially well for people who can get to Orlando in a day’s drive. Because we weren’t going to be in the theme parks, I planned out the days so that we could still experience some Disney magic while also having lots of time playing and relaxing by our resort pools. Thanks to my love of memory keeping and photo taking, I have some fun photos of our “Non-Park Disney Vacation.” Here are five ways we captured the magic without stepping foot in the parks. 

1) eat ice cream for dinner at beaches and cream

On our first night of vacation, we went over to the Beach Club Resort to have dinner at Beaches and Cream.  Ice cream for dinner was the plan. I went all out for a banana split, and asked one of my kids to take my picture before things got ugly. Take photos of your group eating special foods, any unique features of your dining location, or a snapshot of the menu. Dining outside of the parks is one of the easiest ways to experience notable Disney magic without having a park ticket. At WDW, you have tons of options. Check out the Disney Food Blog for great tips and reviews, and these blog posts that spotlight Disney food and how to preserve your dining experience through your photos and memories.














2) visit a resort for a quick service dinner and arcade fun

Disney resorts are known for their theming, attention to detail, and amenities. While some activties are reserved for resort guests only, there are some things you can do as a visitor. We went over to All Star Sports because I had experience with that resort and knew my sporty kids would love it. We had dinner in the food court, walked around to see the faux football field and gigantic cup of Coca-Cola, then went over to the arcade where each of my kids had an arcade card to use as they wanted. They were thrilled, and I loved that there was an end to the gaming – when the cards ran out of credits! Check out this link to see how many arcades are found at WDW – it’s an impressive list. Take advantage of the resort surroundings and the little details that your more leisurely pace might allow you to observe. It’s okay to capture your family and friends enjoying a Disney resort even if you aren’t staying there – it’s still part of your vacation experience.














3) meet and greet with the characters at downtown disney

Okay, so maybe the characters in Downtown Disney don’t hug or interact with the guests, but they are still cute and make perfect photo ops. I see many people taking pictures standing next to the large characters found along the store fronts and within the shops. My favorites are the Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, and Piglet spot, and the Mickey and Minnie duo at the pin traders store. There is also a Buzz Lightyear, a Cinderella, a skeletal pirate, and assorted Lego characters. Another plus – no lines!  (One of my photos was taken in 2007, when we were in Orlando for four days and had only one park day – so a similar vacation of lots of pool time and non-park magic.) 























4) play mini golf at two colorful, themed courses

Because we weren’t consumed with being in the parks, we had time to enjoy both of the miniature golf courses located in WDW. Winter Summerland is located by Disney’s Blizzard Beach water park and is themed with wintry white and holiday decor, but with a beachy summer twist. Olaf would LOVE this place!  Fantasia Gardens is the other course themed after the classic animated film of the same name. (Check out this photo tour of this location to see the whimsical course design.) My kids enjoyed both. We did Fantasia Gardens at night and I found that the lighting is kind of wonky for an amateur photographer, so my photos did not turn out so great. But it was bright, warm, and not crowded at all during the day at Winter Summerland. There are plenty of props and signage for some fun pictures of your golf outing.























5) schedule a character dining experience

As I already mentioned, the resorts offer an array of possibilities for guests when they are not in the parks. This includes character dining experiences. There are a number of resort restaurants that feature characters during the meals – Chef Mickey’s, ‘Ohana, 1900 Park Fare, and Cape May Cafe are all places where you can make a dining reservation and not have to use a park ticket. For more about these options, look at the Disney Food Blog’s section on character dining. But did you know that there are a few other options for dining with characters outside of the WDW Resorts? The Hilton in Downtown Disney has a Sunday breakfast at their Covington Mill restaurant, and the characters typically include Minnie Mouse, Pluto, Brer Fox and Brer Bear (note that these could change). We met all four of them when we ate there before driving home back in 2007. My daughter even got her Minnie Mouse plush signed by Minnie herself. We did stay at the Hilton for that trip, but you can always call to get more info if this an experience that appeals to you. (This article from 2009 may be a bit dated but the list of character dining options outside of the parks might be worth a little bit of research, especially of you are staying at any of the mentioned resort locations.) For tips on maximizing your character dining experience, listen to this Capturing Magic podcast – Episode 38: Character Dining Tips.














My guess is that most guests experience some or all of these things at some point during their Walt Disney World vacations, but it might be as an activity tucked in and around the exciting parks’ schedules and touring plans. Whether you are enjoying mini golf on a non-park day, or you are exploring the outdoor activities at Fort Wilderness during your non-park vacation, don’t forget to take photos of your surroundings, the unique Disney features, and the people and relationships that are important to you. There is so much to take advantage of outside of the theme parks in Disney World. In addition to Downtown Disney, Disney’s Boardwalk and the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex are great non-ticket destinations. For more ideas on enjoying the Disney magic without having park tickets, check out these articles. You may find you will be planning a Disney trip sooner rather than later. 





A scrapbooker and collector since childhood and long time fan of Disney parks and media, Beth ventures into the blogging world at Any Happy Little Thoughts where she shares her approach for preserving personal Disney memories, one story at a time.


Episode 80: Disney Vacation Traditions

Posted on by Wendy in 02) When You're There, 05 Podcast, Extra Magic Leave a comment

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Tangie Baxter and Aaron Morris join Steph to share Disney vacation traditions. Those things we have to do when we go to Disney. Ideas for family and grownup only trips too.

A note: after we finished recording, I decided to hurry and check for an Elsa and Anna FastPass+ and I was able to nab one for our family and had my pick of times on my preferred day! YAY!


Tangie Baxter
Aaron Morris (Twitter)
Steph (Capturingmagic_ on Twitter and Instagram)

Picks With Pixie Dust

Tangie: Sorcerer’s Radio
Steph: Getting Difficult FastPass Reservations


Don’t forget to enter Disney’s Beset Moment Ever Sweepstakes!


Best Moment Ever!

Posted on by Steph in Disney Official Leave a comment

If you could pick just ONE moment in your life to be THE BEST MOMENT ever, what would it be? I can think of a few, for sure! Disney sent over information about the new sweepstakes they are running that is PERFECT for all of us memory keepers!  Here are the details:::

To enter, submit a photo that portrays a moment of achievement in any activity whether it be recreational, educational or a significant moment in time. With your photo, submit a caption that best describes your moment (less than 140 characters). Check out examples in the Best Moment Ever Photo Gallery and for more detailed instructions, and read the official rules.

Prizes include:

  • ·         1 GRAND PRIZE WINNER will receive a 4 days/3 nights Disney Parks Vacation for 4 to The Walt Disney World®Resort:

o   Roundtrip coach Airfare*

o   2 Nights at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel

o   1 Night at the Cinderella Castle Suite in the Magic Kingdom® Park at Walt Disney Worldc Resort

o   4 Day Magic Your Way Tickets with Park Hopper® Option

o   4 Tickets to the runDisney “Royal Family 5K” as part of the Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend at Walt Disney World® Resort on February 20, 2015

*If winner resides more than 250 miles from Orlando International Airport

  • ·         1 FIRST PRIZE WINNER will receive a $1,000 Disney Store shop card
  • ·         3 SECOND PRIZE WINNERS will receive a $100 Disney Store shop card


Visit to enter now I would LOVE it if one of our readers/listeners won!! (crossing my fingers!!)

Our Pirate Day: Pixie Dust on a Budget

Posted on by Terri in 01) Before You Go, Extra Magic 2 Comments

Title Collage - Our Pirate Day: Pixie Dust on a Budget -

For my family a trip to Walt Disney World wouldn’t be complete without extra Pixie Dust. Usually Pixie Dust comes in the form of goodie bags or other presents “delivered” to our resort room, so when I was planning an offsite, budget trip last November, I knew I needed to think outside the box (or goodie bag).

Our family loves to go to Walt Disney World in October for the Food & Wine Festival and Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party (MNSSHP). October is also my son’s birthday month, so he got to go to Disney World for his birthday in 2010 and 2011. We only skipped 2012 because we had a big December trip planned that year. Unfortunately when 2013 rolled around, a family trip wasn’t in the budget, so when I asked my son where he wanted to celebrate his 11th birthday, he was quite disappointed that Disney wasn’t an option. I took a second look and decided that we could squeeze in a mother-son trip. To save money we would stay offsite with my parents, who live about 40 minutes away. It would be a no-frills trip – no Halloween Party or character meals – but for my son, it was perfect. We were headed to Disney World and I needed to start planning Pixie Dust.

I wrote about my usual Pixie Dust goodie bags in The Park Explorer’s Kit and discussed it in Episode 68: Ideas for Pixie Dusting Vacations, but even my son knew that Mickey wouldn’t be delivering Pixie Dust presents to my parent’s house. I needed some new (and inexpensive) ideas for this trip. As I started to plan the itinerary, my son told me he wanted to spend plenty of time playing his favorite interactive games – Agent P’s World Showcase Adventure and Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom. At that time there were also two new games that we hadn’t tried yet – A Pirate’s Adventure in Magic Kingdom and Wilderness Explorers in Animal Kingdom. We would only be able to spend three days in the parks, so I planned an itinerary that covered our most favorite attractions in each park and left the rest of the day for playing games. (I talk more about these games in Episode 78: Interactive Adventures.) As I was working Pirate’s Adventure into our Magic Kingdom morning, I decided it would be fun to really get into the spirit of the game, and so our Pirate Day was born.

Our Pirate Crew

I knew that I wanted all of us to dress like pirates. My first thought was to book an appointment at The Pirates League. The Pirates League is similar to Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique in that guests can be made over as pirates with hair, makeup and costumes. However, while BBB is limited to kids ages 3-12, The Pirates League is for the whole family at least 3 years of age. Although this experience can be expensive for the deluxe costume options, there are also more reasonable options available. Prices range currently from $29.95 to $74.95. Unfortunately, we planned to be at Magic Kingdom on a Halloween Party day, so Pirates League appointments had been fully booked months in advance. I needed another option.

After some research I bought a pack of bandannas on Amazon and hit our local party store to buy temporary tattoos and a plastic pirate hook. Throw in a Disney pirate t-shirt for my son, and we were all set. I wrapped the costume items up in a box and gave it to him as a birthday present on the night we arrived at my parent’s house. The next morning we – my son, my parents and I – all dressed up in our pirate garb. This is honestly one of the things that I love most about Disney; where else can grown adults dress up and play make-believe for a day. We had a great time talking like pirates, and interacting not only with Cast Members but other guests. Note – except for MNSSHP, adults are prohibited from dressing in full character costumes, but just a few inexpensive party supplies can be a lot of fun.

Our Pirate Costumes - Our Pirate Day: Pixie Dust on a Budget -

Pirate Itinerary

To make the most out of our Pirate Day we did all of the pirate attractions in Magic Kingdom. As usual, we started our day at rope drop with our favorite headliners – Space Mountain, Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin (twice), AstroOrbiters, Mad Tea Party (twice) and The Haunted Mansion. Then we headed to Adventureland for our Pirate Day. We rode Pirates of the Caribbean, played 3 rounds of Pirate’s Adventure and did Captain Jack Sparrow’s Pirate Tutorial. We planned 3 hours to complete all of the activities with a lunch break in the middle. We chose to eat lunch indoors at Columbia Harbor House. It was a hot, sunny day and Pirate’s Adventure is mostly played outside, so we were glad to have a nice break to sit down indoors. (Tip: if the restaurant is crowded, head upstairs where there’s a lot more seating.)
Pirates of the Carribean - Our Pirate Day: Pixie Dust on a Budget -

Magic Kingdom has one other pirate activity that I should mention – the Parade of Pirates. Guests of The Pirate’s League are invited to return and participate in a daily parade around Adventureland.

If you’re really interested in all things pirate, there are also a few activities outside of Magic Kingdom. Disney’s Hollywood Studios has a fairly new pirate attraction – The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow. This is a walk-through interactive attraction located near Toy Story Mania. Note – this attraction includes skeletons, monsters and a loud battle and might be scary for small children. Disney also offers the Pirate Adventure Cruises for kids ages 4 to 12. This tour departs from one of four resorts each morning and includes pirate booty and a snack. Also, if you’re staying onsite, don’t forget that Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort has pirate-themed rooms.

Pirate’s Adventure Game

A Pirate’s Adventure – Treasures of the Seven Seas is an interactive game, added to Magic Kingdom’s Adventureland in 2013. In this game you are helping Captain Jack Sparrow find 5 treasures hidden throughout Adventureland. Gameplay is similar to Agent P’s World Showcase Adventure where you trigger special effects in the park, but instead of a high-tech device, you’re given a paper map and a magic talisman card to activate each station.
A Pirate's Adventure Game - Our Pirate Day: Pixie Dust on a Budget -

There are 5 missions in Pirate’s Adventure and each one takes around 20 minutes to complete. One nice thing about this game is that there are no time limits; you can stop and start the game as often as you want throughout the day. Although it was a lot of fun, the game seems to be geared towards younger kids and was a little repetitive for my 11-year old. He was happy enough only completing three missions. Still, the story and the effects were pretty cool and it’s definitely worth doing at least a few rounds.

A Pirate's Adventure - Our Pirate Day: Pixie Dust on a Budget -

Pirate Tutorial

One of our favorite attractions at Magic Kingdom is Captain Jack’s Pirate Tutorial. This show runs several times daily on a stage across from Pirates of the Caribbean; check the Times Guide for the exact schedule. The show features Captain Jack Sparrow and his shipmate, Mack. What makes this show so special is that Captain Jack recruits the kids in the audience to become pirates. All of the kids get to come on stage at the end of the show to take the Pirate Oath and receive a membership scroll.

Captain Jack Sparrow - Our Pirate Day: Pixie Dust on a Budget -

Captain Jack also selects four kids for each show to learn sword fighting. Three of the kids train with Mack and one, generally the oldest of those selected, gets to fight Captain Jack himself. My son did this in 2010 and got to fight Mack.

Pirate Tutorial 2010 - Our Pirate Day: Pixie Dust on a Budget -

This time he was determined to be picked to fight Captain Jack. These are our tips for getting selected:

  • Arrive early for the show and stake out a front-row spot.
  • If you’re celebrating a birthday, wear your birthday button.
  • Dress like a pirate.
  • When Captain Jack gives instructions to the audience, follow his directions and show a lot of enthusiasm.
The first time my son was selected, we got there early and he was wearing a birthday button, but no costume. He was also a little shy. This time he had the birthday button, pirate costume and our whole family showed a lot of enthusiasm.

Picked for Pirate Tutorial - Our Pirate Day: Pixie Dust on a Budget -

He got picked to go on stage and had a great time fighting Captain Jack Sparrow.

Fighting Captain Jack - Our Pirate Day: Pixie Dust on a Budget -

In addition to the membership scroll, all of the kids who participate get a Photopass card with pictures from the whole show. The show offers some really great photo opportunities. Though I should mention, the stage is in the bright sunlight so getting evenly-lit shots can be a challenge.

More Budget Pixie Dust Ideas

When we were done playing pirates, my son spent the afternoon playing Sorcerer’s of the Magic Kingdom. The park closed at 7pm because of the Halloween Party, so we took the boat to the Polynesian resort for a quick-service dinner. Then we sat on the Polynesian beach to watch the Electric Water Pageant and Hallowishes (the MK fireworks show for MNSSHP). This was our first time watching the fireworks from that location. It was truly magical and, of course, free. Definitely something we’ll be doing again.

Electric Water Pageant - Our Pirate Day: Pixie Dust on a Budget -

I chose to do pirate-themed pixie dust in Magic Kingdom but you could easily extend this idea to different themes and to other parks. Dress as princes and princesses and spend the day in Fantasyland. Pick up some Agent P fedoras for the family and save the world in Epcot. Make Wilderness Explorer sashes and enjoy a day at Animal Kingdom. Or just put on a few themed accessories and have your picture taken with your favorite character.

I took this Pixie Dust approach on our last trip because of our logistic and budget constraints, but I’m excited about the endless possibilities, and I know we’ll be doing more of this kind of Pixie Dust in the future. What about you? What ideas have you used to make your Disney trips extra special? Share your favorite Pixie Dust ideas here.

Minnie Me With the White Rabbit

Posted on by Steph in 06 Minnie Me, Where's Minnie Me 1 Comment

Minnie Me was hanging out with the White Rabbit in Fantasyland, Disneyland (near the Queen of Hearts restrooms). Donna was the random winner selected by Rafflecopter and Lori was the random winner selected from those that correctly guessed Minnie Me’s location.

We had a lot of new names entered this week, so WELCOME to all of you first-timers!  Thanks to everyone that played along!!

I’m working on scheduling a Capturing Magic podcast recording this week, so hopefully, we will have a new show up for you later in the week. I’m excited about the topic and I know you will love it too!!

Have a GREAT week!


Where’s Minnie Me on Easter Weekend?

Posted on by Steph in 06 Minnie Me, Where's Minnie Me Leave a comment

The “Where’s Minnie Me” this weekend, might look familiar. I couldn’t resist using it for Easter weekend though!! Everyone should have a GREAT chance at guessing her location!!

You don’t have to know where she is to enter! You can also like a post on our Facebook page, Tweet about the contest, or pin this post, or something else from You get TWO entries for each thing you do and you can do them everyday. You can do all of the Rafflecopter entries everyday the contest is open for multiple chances to win! There are plenty of chances for EVERYONE! All entries via Rafflecopter will be verified and if we are unable to verify them, that entry will be disqualified.

There will be ONE random winner selected from those that guess WHERE Minnie Me is, correctly (in the survey form below) and one random winner selected by those that enter through RaffleCopter (also below). Each winner will receive $25 in PayPal cash. You CAN enter by both guessing AND through RaffleCopter, but you can only win for ONE of them (please allow 48 for deposit to be made).

If you’re guessing where Minnie Me is, PLEASE ONLY ONE GUESS PER PERSON

If you are in a reader or email, you will need to come to the site to enter. Please note, sometimes, the Rafflecopter entry form doesn’t show up in Safari, click the link below to access the Rafflecopter site and enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Social Media and Your Disney Memories!

Posted on by Aaron in Pocket Scrapping (Project Life) 2 Comments
It’s hard to imagine that ten years ago, no one really knew what social media was. We didn’t post status updates, or share our selfies on Instagram, and the hashtag was nothing more than that symbol that meant number. In today’s world, social media has become part of the everyday conversation. Our world is dominated by Likes, Fan Pages, and 140 characters…so naturally, it would begin to factor into our Disney memories.
When I went to Disney World in 2012, I knew that I wanted to included social media to some extent in my album, but I wasn’t really sure how. Knowing that I was going to do my album in pocket style, I went on a search for some pocket scrapbooking cards to use for my album. I was lucky enough to find these gems from Pepppermint Creative, and they were free!
I used the cards in a few different spots in my album.
I also used an Instagram style freebie that I found from Traci Reed.
You can see it here.
I am really happy with these additions to my album, I think they bring some everyday authenticity to the pages. If you are interested in adding some social media cards to your pocket album, here are some other great resources.
Hope they can help you catch all of those awesome Disney memories!

Send Postcards From Inside Disneyland

Posted on by Tanya in 01) Before You Go, 02) When You're There, Disneyland, Extra Magic, Souvenirs, Uncategorized 3 Comments

Have you ever noticed the mailboxes that are located around Disneyland and Disney California Adventure?  I am sure a lot of people haven’t given them a second thought, but they are actual functioning mailboxes!

Years ago if you dropped a postcard or letter into any of the mailboxes, they would be sent with a actual Disneyland postmark.  Sadly this does not happen anymore and all the collected mail is taken to a nearby post office and then sent.

But if you ask me, it is still a TON of fun to drop a postcard into one of the many mailboxes.

Last year I came across a photo book website called Artifact Uprising.  They had just come out with a fun postcard pack that you can make using your own photos.

I knew immediately that I would be using my own photos from around the park and that I would definitely want to send them FROM the park as well.  So I ordered them and they turned out fantastic!

I got my postcards all filled out and then ran around the parks looking for all the mailboxes I could find.  With a little internet help, I think I was able to find them all!

This is the first mailbox you will see when you walk into Disneyland.  Enter the gates and it is located to the left side, right before you head under the train tracks.

After you head under the train tracks, there is another on a light post, right outside City Hall.

There are FOUR more located on just Main Street alone!  All are on light posts.  One in front of Disney Clothiers, one outside the Emporium, one in front of the Camera Shop and one near the Magic Shop!

Keep heading up Main Street and there are two more.  One on the east side of the Hub and another on the west side of the Hub.

There is one outside Pooh Corner

Another in Critter Country right outside The Briar Patch.  Two in Frontierland.  Outside the Golden Horseshoe and outside the Silver Spur Supply shop.

Got one more in Frontierland outside the main entrance to the Pioneer Mercantile shop, one in Adventureland that is located on a wall outside the Bazaar, one in Fantasyland just outside the Castle Heraldry Shoppe and then one in Tomorrowland on the backside of Innoventions near the entrance to Autopia.

Back in ToonTown, there are no mailboxes.  This is NOT a working mailbox ;)

There are definitely not as many mailboxes over at California Adventure.  Just four, maybe five.

One on Buena Vista Street outside the Five & Dime, another near the wait times/guest service area of Carthay Circle, one in Paradise Pier outside Point Mugu Tattoo and another in the Grizzly River area by the park entrance to the Grand Californian Hotel.

I was informed that this full size mailbox in the Hollywood Backlot area was a working mailbox, but you can tell by my face that it definitely did not open. LOL!

Also, there is supposed to be another mailbox in the Pacific Wharf area, but its location is currently behind construction walls so I cannot confirm if it is still there are will still be there when the walls come down.

I had so much fun sending these postcards to all my friends and they all received them (I sent them all over the country!) within a couple days!

One last helpful tidbit, make sure you already have your postcard stamps!  They DO NOT sell stamps anywhere in the park or at the hotels.  I thought they did, but I was informed by Cast Members that they do not.  IF you want to send a postcard from the hotel and you do not have a stamp, no problem!  They send out mail complimentary at the front desk of the hotel.  This doesn’t really help if you want to mail from inside the park, but I thought it was a good tip to know =)


Tanya is the digital scrapbook designer known as Crossbone Cuts Designs. You can check out her designs and products at Read her Disneyland trip reports on her Blog and you can also check her out on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to follow along in her almost weekly adventures at the Disneyland Resort!

Creating your own planning spreadsheet

Posted on by Krisi in 01) Before You Go, 02) When You're There, Capturing Magic Trip Report 1 Comment

Our 180 day mark passed a couple weeks ago, and while trying to figure out timing for dining I created a spreadsheet I wanted to share for those planning a trip. I am including two different ways to download – as an excel file as well as a PDF (for those who just want to print it out and write it in by hand).

Disney planning/documenting worksheet

This spreadsheet would also work great for those who just want to take quick notes about their day, while at the parks.  Include details about photos you took or something someone said as well as where you might have been at that time.

Disney planning/documenting worksheet

I plan on taking a copy with us  1) so we know where to be and when and 2) so I can add additional notes onto the spreadsheet of what we liked at those places, other things that we did etc.  This is in addition to the Walt Disney World Passporter that we have as well.  I will probably type the things set in stone in and then use pencil while we are there to lay things out day to day and update with what we actually did.

Here is a screenshot about how to add an arrow into your spreadsheet (if you have downloaded the excel file).  Simple to to the Insert Tab, then touch Symbol, then choose the arrow down and insert.

Adding arrows to your Disney planning/documenting worksheet

And here is a look at a couple days of the arrows in action…

Adding arrows to your Disney planning/documenting worksheet

Here is a look at a sample week laid out – this is just a portion of our trip plans so it isn’t very balanced but ours uses 3 sheets. (I am getting so excited!)

Handwritten Disney planning/documenting worksheet

Some other ideas to use the worksheets for besides you planning and documenting your trip – have your kids fill in a day how they would want to tour the park (let them use a couple squares as one day if needed to see what they think is the most important things to be doing.  You might find something really fun on theirs that you want to include in the master plan.

Download your copy of the spreadsheet HERE or the PDF copy HERE.

We would love to see what you create – link us up to your plans!

Krisi is a memory keeper and Disney enthusiast, planning her first trip to
Walt Disney World after 40+ trips to Disneyland. She can be found
at Krisi’s Kreations, on Facebook, and Instagram.

it’s a small world: Create Your Own Digital Doll

Posted on by Beth in Scrapbooking (digital or paper) 1 Comment














As part of the celebration of “it’s a small world’s” 50th Anniversary, Disney has a website dedicated to sharing the love felt ’round the world for the beloved attraction, it’s memorable dolls, and it’s catchy song. It allows fans to participate in the celebration without ever having to leave their computer screen (although we know it would be much better to enjoy the ride in person!). One activity is a build-your-own-doll feature, which results in a customized digital doll that you can download to your computer. Here’s how to customize your own doll (or multiple ones if you wish):

1) Go to the website www.smallworld50.comClick on the “Build a Doll” button on the left side of the screen. (Note: I was also able to create a doll on my iPhone 5 by accessing the site and following these same steps. The digital doll will download to your phone and I saved it to my photo album.)








2) Create your doll. Select your doll’s head, top, and bottom by clicking the arrows in either direction to see all of the options. Mix and match to your heart’s desire. Select skin tone.









Or, select “Surpise Me” for a randomly shuffled design. 









3) Name your doll, and then click “Add Doll to Sing Along” to save your creation to the site’s collective sing along project.









4) After clicking “Add Doll to Sing Along,” you will see a page that gives you several options. Click “Download Doll” for an immediate download of your doll in PNG format. Click on “Share Doll” to share on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. (I did try this share feature on all three platforms, and all that was shared was a link to the website, not an image of the doll I created.) Click on “Try Again” to make another doll. This page also lets you know that Disney is giving a $1 donation to UNICEF with every doll that is added to the Sing Along.









Here is one of the dolls I created and downloaded. They may be small digital files but they are very cute!









Here is my first doll, which I placed on a 3×4 card and added my name and the framed edge. She would fit right in on a page with photos from the ride!














This is a 3×4 horizontal card with multiple dolls. One of my kids suggested that we have the entire family represented, which I think is a great idea! My youngest created the one boy with black hair and a red shirt. 












Because this website is for a special occasion, I am not sure how long it will be around. So be sure to check it out and get your sweet little digi dolls created and saved for your next project. Along with scrapbooking and photo albums, how cute would an “it’s a small world” baby shower or young child’s birthday party be? These would make a nice addition to any project!

And yes, be ready to get that song stuck in your head – it is played when you visit the website!





A scrapbooker and collector since childhood and long time fan of Disney parks and media, Beth ventures into the blogging world at Any Happy Little Thoughts where she shares her approach for preserving personal Disney memories, one story at a time.


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