Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Loving your job *or* Disney Nut

I always heard that on the path to find happiness in life, you should figure out something you enjoy / love and make a career out of it. Until just a little while ago (as in, hours), I didn't realize that I had actually kind of followed that advice.

Those of you who know me well know that I am a Disney nut. The whole family is. I love all things Disney, I could go to Disney World several times a year and never be bored with it. I love thinking about Disney, researching Disney, watching Disney stuff, shopping for Disney stuff, and going to Disney.

And I just happen to be a travel agent! I spent hours this afternoon working on some Disney packages for clients, looking up park hours for them, helping them plan their dining reservations. And it didn't feel like work. Because I get such joy out of helping someone else have a fabulous WDW vacation. I get excited working on their details. It is a great place to be, and I'm so lucky that it has worked out for me thus far.

That all being said, I wanted to share with you where the Disney Nut began and how the Disney Nut has continued onto my little ones.
My first trip to WDW was with my moms whole side of the family when I was 8 years old. All of us Iowans loaded up into an RV and road tripped it down to Florida to meet up with the Floridians (4 of them) at WDW. It was Christmas and it was one of their coldest Decembers on record in a long time. We were wearing hoods and stocking caps. And I remember how magical it was.

Here is a picture of my dad and I on that trip:

We took Brooke to WDW a month after she turned three. Start 'em early I say! Here is a picture of Brooke and her dad on that trip:

Last year we took the girls on a Disney Cruise and made a one-day stop at Magic Kingdom the day before we set sail. Hannah was 15 months old. Here she is with her daddy on that trip, riding Dumbo:

But wait, there's more.

My first go-'round on the Carousel at Magic Kingdom (that's my aunt Kathy and Uncle Tom in front of me:

And Brooke's first time in 2007 (that's Grandma Anne there looking on):

And Hannah's in 2009:

My first meeting with the Big Cheese:

The entire time leading up to our 2007 trip with Brooke, we kept talking about "going to see Mickey." We didn't discuss going to Disney World, it was all about going to see Mickey. When we got to the hotel and started our walk to Magic Kingdom, she kept asking "where's Mickey?" When we walked down Main Street USA, nothing interested her, not even the castle. She just wanted to know where Mickey was. So we headed straight to ToonTown so she could meet him, and then we could get on with the show.
Brooke's first meeting with Mickey:

(Pretty excited little girl for someone who is scared to death of Santa and the Easter Bunny!).
Since we only spent one day at MK last year, we didn't do character time. You get a lot of good character opportunities on the cruise ship. Hannah didn't meet them all, and her best moments were with Chip and Dale, and Goofy. They didn't bother her at all.
However, she could not get away from Mickey fast enough, and this was the only shot we got of her with him:

We were all lucky enough to get to ride the elevator with Minnie on the cruise ship though! Just the six of us (matt's parents too) along with Minnie and her assistant. We rode about 6 floors. It was so exciting and I thought Brooke and Hannah might burst. Too bad we were squished in there and the camera was buried in my bag! It was one of my favorite moments of the whole trip!
So you can see.....Disney runs deep and goes way back around here. I don't have any pictures of Matt from his younger years at Disney, they must all be at his parents house. I can tell you that he has mentioned the story often of the year his best friend Jamie went with them, and they sat on the balcony at the Contemporary feeding birds French Fries that they had sticking out from between their toes. Silly boys.

I've been to WDW 6 times and I plan on going a lot more. And I'm so blessed that my job is sharing a place I love with others! How fun is that!?
Wishing you a day filled with Pixie Dust!

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