Showing posts with label Disney. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Disney. Show all posts

The Feral Cats of Disneyland and 10 Fun Facts

Enjoy 10 fun facts about Disneyland while we search for the secretive feral cats!

This is the week of our 7th annual, mother-daughter Disneyland getaway and I was planning to share a little Disneyland trivia with you. In anticipation of our trip, I spent an excessive amount of time looking for obscure Disneyland facts.

Of course I discovered a few interesting tidbits:
  1. The Haunted Mansion queue passes through one pet cemetery, but there’s actually a second that is now out of the view of guests. (Ask a Cast Member to see it.)
  2. Doritos were invented in Disneyland. The Frito company ran a Mexican style restaurant in Disneyland on New Orleans Street called Casa de Fritos. Legend has it that the restaurant was delivered a batch of stale tortillas one day, but instead of throwing them out, the marketing executive had the idea to fry them up and serve them as chips. Doritos means “little golden things” in Spanish.
  3. The Matterhorn was the first tubular steel roller coaster in the world.
  4. All the plants in Tomorrowland are edible.
  5. The term used by employees when a park guest vomits is “Code V.” It was formally “Protein Spill.”
  6. Trash cans are strategically placed so guests are never more than 30 steps from one.
  7. The Hollywood Tower Hotel (Tower of Terror) is 183 feet tall, making it currently the tallest building in Anaheim.
  8. The longest-serving cast member is Oscar Martinez, who started in December 1956. He works at Carnation Café.
  9. The purple teacup in the Mad Tea Party spins the fastest.
  10. Disneyland is home to a small army of feral cats – approximately 200 of them! They mostly hide during the day but at night they roam and assist in keeping the rodent population at bay. Even though they are feral they are well cared for – adult cats are spayed and neutered, and clean food and water is made available.
Ahh... The mysterious feral cats!

Since my daughter and I heard the legend of the feral cats, we are always on the lookout and so far have only seen one cat. We were riding the Disneyland Railroad around the park and it was hanging out in the backlot. So this year, in addition to riding as many rides as we can,  it is our mission to actually photograph one of the secretive feral cats of Disneyland. I'll post it on my Instagram if we are successful.

If you would like to learn more about the feral cats of Disneyland you'll love fun fact #11!

11. The cats of Disneyland can be found @disneylandcats on FacebookInstagram and Twitter and they even have their own website, Disneyland Cats.

For more fun facts:

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Tutorial: Comfy and Cute Mouse Ears

DIY sparkly Minnie Mouse ears template and tutorial
I love Disneyland! Every year since my daughter was in middle school we have enjoyed an annual mother-daughter visit to the park. We stay up late, ride as many rides as we can, eat lots of treats and walk until we can't walk anymore. Our trip is, without a doubt, my favorite four days of the year.

In preparation for our adventure, I always do some sort of DIY Disney craft. Of course my go to project is matching shirts, and this year was no different. However, I also decided to challenge myself a bit and attempt to make matching mouse ears.

There are lots of tutorials for DIY mouse ears floating around the interwebs and I'll be honest, this is not the easiest pattern you'll find. But, the results are mouse-tacular with plenty of sparkle and bling and they are comfortable enough to wear all day at the park.



Print out my mouse ears template.

Place your headband onto the printed template. If the curve of your headband does not match the dotted curve inside the ears, trace the top edge of the headband onto the template.

Use a permanent marker to mark the center of the headband and where the ears will be attached.
Cut out one of the paper ears along the outer circle and then cut along the dashed headband curve.
Trace the ear onto a thin piece of cardboard and cut it out.
Trace four ears onto the foam board.
Foam board is not particularly easy to cut, especially since the piece is curved. BE CAREFUL AND WATCH YOUR FINGERS!!

Place the foam board on a cutting mat to protect your work surface.
I'm not super strong, so I use an X-acto knife to cut through the top layer of paper and as much foam as I am able. Then, I carefully peel away as much as possible and use a scissors to cut through any remaining foam and the bottom paper layer.
Cut out 4 foam board ears.
Each of your mouse ears will be two thicknesses of foam board. Glue your two sets of ears and wait for the glue to dry completely.

If your ears are still a little jagged around the edges, use a piece of sandpaper to smooth them out.
Cut the sheet of Duck prism tape in half and peel the backing off of one of the halves. Place the sheet sticky side up. Carefully position your ears onto the tape. (There's not a lot of room for error here.) Use a scissors to trim the excess tape.

Repeat for the other side of the ears.
It's kind of hard to capture in a photo, but the ears are holographic when the light hits them.
Next, use hot glue to attach ribbon to the outer edge of the ears. I used the same wide, sparkly ribbon that I use for the bow and trimmed it after gluing it down. However, it would probably be easier to use 3/8-inch wide ribbon and not have to trim the edges. There's no need to cover the edge that will be attached to the headband. And, of course, be careful because hot glue is HOT!
Next, use the ribbon to make a bow that is about 6 inches wide.

Use hot glue to attach the bow to the top center of the headband.
Finally, hot glue the ears in place.
After the glue cools, you are ready to show off your Disney style!

DIY sparkly Minnie Mouse ears template and tutorial

Now I'm going to the happiest place on earth with my kiddo for our annual adventure!

DIY sparkly Minnie Mouse ears template and tutorial


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Tutorial: Disney Map Keepsake Box

Craft Tutorial: How to make a keepsake box with Disneyland maps or other travel maps, brochures and repurposed paperDisneyland has held a special place in my heart ever since my daughter and I made it our annual tradition to go there, just the two of us. We spend two and a half days, taking in as many attractions as we can. Our personal record is 38 attractions in one wonderfully exhausting day.

We love them all! Big Thunder Mountain, The Matterhorn Bobsleds, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Storybook Land Canal Boats. When I sit down to look at the park map it brings back every happy memory, like the first time we did the Sleeping Beauty Castle Walk Through and my daughter tried to open one of the magical doors and it rattled and growled at her. Hilarious!

To preserve some of our magical memories (park tickets, pins, etc.) I made a special Disneyland map box. If you have your own happy place, this project could easily be modified to use maps, brochures or magazine pictures featuring your favorite locale.



I used a 4-inch square box and 3 park maps. I could have used fewer maps, but I wanted to feature specific images on my box.
Fortunately, the folds in the maps were spaced four inches apart. That made it easier to arrange the pieces on my box.

Paper mache boxes tend to vary slightly in size, so I'm not going to give specific measurements. You'll need to measure each section of the box that you'll be covering with paper.
Using a paper trimmer, cut out six pieces for the lid. Four rectangles to wrap around the sides and two squares for the top and inside.
For the base of the box cut two squares for the inside and bottom, four large rectangles to wrap around the outer sides and four smaller rectangles to line the inner sides.
Now it's time to get out the Mod Podge.

Pro Tip: I like to cover my work area with parchment paper for easy clean up. It catches any drips, and can be easily removed from your sticky work in progress.

Paint an even layer of Mod Podge on one side of the box.
Position one of the outer side papers and smooth out any bubbles.
Apply an even coat of Mod Podge along the bottom and inside edge and fold over the side paper. Press out any bubbles.

Repeat for the remaining three sides.
Next, adhere the outer bottom panel of the box.
Now it's time to adhere the inner side panels.
And finally, the bottom inside square.
Now for the lid. Again, start with the sides. Fold them over, just like before.

Since the sides of the lid are so narrow, it was easier to wrap one piece of paper around both the inside and outside instead of using two separate pieces.
Next, adhere a square to the inside of the lid.
Then adhere a square to the top of the lid.
Once your box is completely covered with paper, you'll want to seal it with a couple coats of Mod Podge. This gives it a beautiful, shiny finish.

Brush a thin layer of Mod Podge over the entire surface of the box and lid. Let it dry 15-20 minutes between coats.
Let the box dry for at least 24 hours before you put the lid on. If you can still smell the Mod Podge, it's too soon to close the box.
Once it's completely dry, your keepsake box is ready to be filled with your treasures and mementos.

Craft Tutorial: How to make a keepsake box with Disneyland maps or other travel maps, brochures and repurposed paper

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Recipe: Oven Dehydrated Strawberries and Bananas

As my daughter and I were preparing for the epic 18th birthday Disneyland celebration (here's the shirt), I gathered up the snacks for our little road trip adventure. Of course road trips always mean splurging on some junk food, but healthy treats can be yummy, too. (Insert teenage eye roll here!)

I thought about buying some dehydrated fruit, but when I saw the gorgeous, fresh strawberries on sale for $0.87, I decided to just make my own.

Yes, dehydrating fruits in a food dehydrator is probably the quickest method, but since I don't have one I made my dried strawberries and bananas in the oven. It's still pretty easy.


  • 1 lb of fresh strawberries
  • 5 small bananas
  • lemon juice
  • water

  • Directions

    Preheat the oven to 200F. Cover two baking sheets with parchment paper.

    Tip - The use of parchment paper is not required, but it makes it a lot easier to get your dried fruit of the pan. You'll be thanking me later.
    Wash your strawberries.
    Blot your strawberries to remove the excess moisture.
    Cut the strawberries into 1/4-inch thick chips.
    Place the strawberry chips on your parchment lined baking sheet so they are not touching.
    Slice your bananas into 1/4-inch chips.
    Mix 2-3 tablespoons of lemon juice (fresh or bottled) with 1-2 tablespoons of water in a small bowl.

    Gently toss the banana slices in the juice. This helps prevent excessive browning.
    Place the banana chips on your parchment lined baking sheet so they are not touching.
    Put the fruit into the oven and bake for about 5 hours, rotating the pan placement every hour for even heating.

    You may also want to turn the fruit slices over about halfway through the baking process.
    When your fruit is nice and dry, remove it from the oven and let it cool completely. For long term storage, it's best to put your fruit loosely into a non-plastic container and give it a little shake from time to time to mix it up. However, since we're taking ours on the road and it doesn't need to be preserved for an excessive number of days, I'll be tossing it all into a large Ziplock bag. Yum!

    Since the shirt is made and the snacks are ready, it's time for us to hit the road. I can't wait to ride Big Thunder Mountain!!

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