The Creative Princess: March 2011

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Dining at Disney - Special Diets

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Going to Disney?  Staying on property or having dinner on property?  Have a food allergy or special diet?  Freaking out wondering what you are going to eat?

Not to worry!  This IS Disney after all and they DO think of everything and everyone!

If you are diabetic they have a ton of things for you and you will not have to worry about a thing!  If you see an option and have a question about it just ask your cast member serving you, they will be able to answer any question you may have.

Maybe you have to follow a gluten free (GF) diet.  NOT a problem!!  Did you know that many restaurants at Disney have already made arrangements to make sure no gluten will come near your food?  They have!  Most restaurants have special fryers, grills, refrigerators, etc to prepare and store the GF food in.  When you sit down for your meal remind (yes remind, you are given the option to put special dietary needs in your reservations*) your cast member of your GF needs.  He will then go tell the chef, the chef will come out and go over the menu with you.  Don't see anything appealing?  Not to worry!  The chef can whip something up just for you.  Once he is done talking to you about your needs/wants he will return to his kitchen, pick one member of his staff to prepare your meal just for you.  How awesome is that?!?!  
With food allergies on the rise Disney has taken great care of those concerns ahead of time and really thought things through.  Like a GF diet, you do have many options if you have a food allergy as well.  Follow the steps above that I mention about GF for any food allergy.
You can see most of the menus here to start planning what you will eat before you step foot on property.  Another great place to find lots of info is Disney's site itself.  You can fin all of that info here.
OH!  Did I mention BabyCakes NYC Bakery in DTD?  Not only are they a GF bakery they are also a Vegan bakery!!  I hear their goodies are mighty tasty.


*You are asked to give at least a 14 day notice of any special dietary needs.  If you are making an Advance Dining Reservation there is a place to list any concerns/allergies.  I would also call (407) WDW-DINE or (407) 939-3463 14 days prior to your arrival just to make sure they have all of your info.

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Monday, March 28, 2011

To rent or not to rent - Strollers

Monday, March 28, 2011
(photo curtesy of allears.net)

VS

(photo curtesy of orlandostrollerrentals.com)


Well, just by the picture it seems pretty obvious to me what one I want to pick!  lol  The first picture is the double stroller option available to rent at the Disney Parks.  The second picture is the double stroller option available to rent from OrlandoStrollerRentals.com.

The down low on the services:

Stroller Rental Fees are as follows:
$15/day for single stroller
$31/day for double stroller
$100 credit card deposit required for renting from Downtown Disney location.  Stroller must be returned to the original rental location to receive a credit card deposit refund.
Disney DOES offer a multi-day discount.  The prices are as follows:
$13/day for single stroller
$27/day for double

Besides the cost to rent from Disney also consider if you will need a stroller should you leave the property for any reason.  If you do then renting from Disney is not an option as their strollers must stay on property and do not break down (fold up).

Other Options
There are MANY other options if you would like to rent a stroller.  They are as follows:
Prices are:
Single Stroller
$50 for 1-3 nights (total, not per night)
$70 for 4-7 nights (total, not per night)
$90 for 8-10 nights and $110 for 11-14 nights

Double Stroller
$65 1-3 nights
$85 4-7 nights
$105 8-10 nights and $125 11-14 nights

Prices are:
Single Stroller
$15 first day
$8 each additional day

Double Stroller
$25 first day
$9 each additional day

Prices Are:
Single Stroller
$30 for up to 3 nights, each additional night is $5-$10 depending on the length of your stay

Double Stroller
$50 for up to 3 nights, each additional night is $4-$8 depending on length of stay

The great thing from renting from one of the above services is your stroller will be delivered to your resort (often times directly to your room) and can be left at your resort for the company to pick up.  You may take these strollers off property and can be easily folded.  They are also not HARD like the Disney strollers are.

Bringing your own stroller
Cost:
FREE!

Can't really beat free!  lol

Some of the reasons you may want to rent a stroller may include:
You just don't have the space in your vehicle to bring your own, you are flying and don't want to worry about checking your stroller.  You only have a single stroller and need a double for your visit but don't want to purchase a double.  Your double just is not big enough for your bigger kid and you don't want to end up carrying her through the parks.

You might also check out the Orlando area Freecycle and Craigslist.  I have heard that both will often times offer free strollers.

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Friday, March 25, 2011

Affording Disney

Friday, March 25, 2011


Never did I think that we would be able to do a Disney Vacation (DV) anytime soon.  Much to my surprise after checking into things I discovered I was VERY wrong!

Disney offers MANY options when planning your vacation.  I am going to tell you what I did, how we are paying for it then I am going to tell you some things I learned AFTER I booked our vacation.

Did you know that when booking your DV you do not have to pay the entire amount up front?  I didn't either!  You only have to put $200 down then you can make payments as you go.  The final payment MUST be paid 45 days before your arrival date.  The reason I like this option is because we did not have the $2043.90 to pay right then and there but knew we would have it by the 45 day mark.  We are not using a credit card to pay for this trip, we are using cash.  By being able to make payments really helps.  I booked our vacation directly from DisneyVacations.com.

Our package includes 4 nights at Disney's Pop Century Resort, 3 days of park tickets and the Deluxe Disney Dining Plan which includes 3 meals and two snacks per day per person.  The DDDP also includes a refillable mug for each person, the refills are free at certain locations.  Because we get 3 sit down meals a day we have LOTS of options for our meals.  We have opted to have 7 character meals and 4 regular meals.  Yes, I know that only adds up to 11 meals and we should get 12 per person but one of our meals "costs" two points instead of one like all the others.  I am MORE than happy to pay the 2 points though, it means we get to have dinner IN Cinderella's Castle!

Now, here are some things I learned AFTER I booked everything.

You can purchase gift certificates from Restaurant.com for many of the restaurants on property for just $2!!  There are restrictions and often times you do have to pay 18% gratuity (automatically added to your bill) and you do have to purchase a certain amount at the restaurant.  But, it is still a really great deal!

You ARE allowed to take soft sided coolers into all of the Disney Parks.  This is great!  A picnic under a tree with a view of THE castle anyone?  How fun!

If you don't want to haul a TON of things with you to the park each day (like water bottles) you can go to any quick service cart and ask for a cup of ice water.  A bottle of water in the park will cost you $2, a bottle of water brought from home (you can purchase cases on sale, check Wags) will cost at least $0.10 plus you will have to carry it around with you all day, but a cup of ice water is totally FREE!

There are TONS of other ways to save and you can check them out on sites such as mousesavers.com, allears.net, couponingtodisney.com and from those sites you will find a ton of others.


Only 129 days to go!!!!!

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Going to Disney!!!!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

I know a lot of you already know this and are sick of hearing about it but......sorry!  I am just SO excited!!!

I was probably Madison's age (5), if not just a little bit older when I last went to WDW.  To be able to go back as an adult and share this experience with not only my girls but also my hubby (who has never been) is just SO exciting!

Disney does a great job of giving you a TON of options when booking your vacation, we opted to stay on the WDW compound, include the deluxe dining plan and opted for just 3 days of park tickets.  I thought it would cost a fortune for the four of us to go but really...it isn't so bad.  Honestly!

Since we are staying on property I get to experience something I never knew Disney had....AMAZING restaurants.  I don't know if I am more excited to see all my sisters, the Princesses, again or the food!  With our dining plan we get to have three sit down dinners per day and two snacks per day.  We have opted to have two character meals per day, most of them are for breakfast/dinner, and leaving lunch to whatever we feel like at the time.

One of the things I am MOST looking forward to is going with Madison to Bibbity Bobbity Boutique and watching her transform from my little princess to a Disney Princess!!  



The best part?  After she is all princessed up we get to go have dinner IN Cinderella's Castle!!  Cinderella will greet us as host then we will proceed upstairs where I hear other princesses will join us for dinner!  EEEEEKKKK!!!  I just want to cry thinking about it!


That reminds me, I need to make sure to pack a lot of travel tissue packs, something tells me I am going to be crying a lot that week.  lol  I get so emotional when I get to share amazing experiences with my girls.

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Friday, March 11, 2011

We LOVE Melmo!!

Friday, March 11, 2011
(photo courtesy of 918moms.com)

Last night my girls and I were able to go see Sesame Street Live thanks to 918moms.com.  We were also lucky enough to have a meet and greet with Melmo (Elmo) and Cookie Monster.

I would really, REALLY, like to tell you that it was a stress free, perfect night.  But, lets be real here!  This is how my evening went down:

At the meet and greet my girls were SO excited to see Melmo and Cookie.  When they walked in the room they both lit up.  It was SO cute!  Mallory just kept waiving and saying hi.  SO cute!  Madison was worried we would not be able to see them but I reassured her that we would.  The closer we got to Melmo and Cookie the tighter Mallory's grip got.  lol  Madison decided she did NOT want her picture taken with them and Mallory would not have it unless I was in the picture with her.

When we got back to our seats we of course got some cotton candy, it is a tradition for us.  Once the show started both girls were pretty excited.  Again, Mallory just kept waiving and saying hi and from time to time would get up and dance to the music.
 (cotton candy mouth)

(YAY!  Melmo!)

Then!  Oh boy!  Then!  lol  Then they shot confetti.  Oh. My. Gosh!  That was all it took for Madison to go from happy to cranky.  Poor girl just does not do well with loud noises.  She sat like this the rest of the show.

Poor baby.

It wasn't much longer before Mallory had enough and just wanted to go run.
So we went ahead and came home.

All in all it was a GREAT show, what we were able to see, and we did have a good time.  Just be ready for an overly active 2 year old to want to get up and go run (lol).

It is not too late for you to purchase tickets for this weekends shows.  Just head to 918moms.com for all of the details on times and cost and where to purchase.

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