Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Holidays at Disneyland

Celebrating "the most wonderful time of the year" in "the happiest place on earth" is an experience you don't want to miss. Holidays at Disneyland is here with more spirit than ever and I wanted to share some highlights from our amazing visit.

Our day started with cookies and hot chocolate at Aladdin's Oasis. Who doesn't like cookies and hot chocolate?! Especially if it's chocolate-covered and shaped in the form of a famous mouse (which btw was worth every calorie).

Mickey, Minnie, Pluto and Goofy were on hand to pose for holiday photos which we took FULL advantage of. When the lines were empty my daughter went up simply for hugs and handshakes from her favorite clubhouse pals.

We then grabbed front row seats to view the special holiday parade "A Christmas Fantasy". Some of our all time favorite Disney characters such as Woody, Buzz, Belle, Pooh and even ice-skating Mickey and Minnie rode on gigantic colorful floats blowing kisses and spreading holiday cheer to all the guests including my speechless two year old.

My husband was on video duty (as you can see from the photos below) so he got very up close and personal to some dancing reindeer and hungry chipmunks.

If you're a fan of Tim Burton's "The Nightmare Before Christmas" then you won't want to miss The Haunted Mansion. The inside is decked out from top to bottom with spooky decorations from this all-time favorite classic!

When the sun sets the REAL magic begins!!! Lights, lights and more lights appear all over the park. The sight of the glowing magic castle is simply breathtaking! It's A Small World is colorful and even used as a backdrop for cartoons that appear every hour on the hour. Last but not least every inch of Main Street is lit up with colorful lights and a spectacular glowing Christmas tree.

It's A Small World has always been my favorite ride in the park so I was excited to see it transformed to celebrate the spirit of the holiday season.

Before we knew it the fireworks spectacular "Believe...In Holiday Magic" lit up the sky. The best part of the show was the snowfall in Tomorrowland immediately after the fireworks finale. The look on my daughter's face as she felt it fall from above was priceless. I have to admit I did get a little misty-eyed watching daddy and baby giggle as they tried to catch drops of snowfall in her tiny hands.

Holidays at Disneyland is going on now until January 2, 2011. Make this season extra special by celebrating it on the happiest place on earth and creating priceless memories that you'll remember for years to come. I know annual passes will be going on "my" wish list to Santa.

Thank you Disney for making our "Holidays at Disneyland" so magical!!!

Disclaimer: I was not paid for this post. I was given tickets to attend the event and the views expressed are my personal and honest opinion.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

"Tea By the Sea" at the Getty Villa

When someone mentions the word "tea" I automatically assume they mean a mug microwaved on high for 2 minutes with a bag of Lipton dipped in it. So it's safe to assume I've never exerienced a proper "tea" dining experience until recently.

Last Wednesday I attended the Getty Villa's "Tea By The Sea" with some fellow mom bloggers in the Pacific Palisades. Our day started with a fascinating tour of Mr. Getty's former home which was built to replicate the Roman country house Villa dei Papirit. The architecture, artwork and landscaping were absolutely amazing.

Our tour guide Eric then led us into the gardens where we smelled fragrant citron, apricot and olive trees. I learned that tarragon is known to have foot-healing properties and that Cleopatra was rumored to have been poisoned by a basket of figs.

After the tour it was time for tea!!! And this wasn't just any tea this tea was a custom aromatic blend which is only avaiable at the Getty Villa. We dined on savory panini sandwiches, tea breads, port-infused cheese, fresh and dried fruit then finished off the meal with gourmet tarts and Mrs. Garrett's famous carrot cake.

Definitely a great way to have my first (but definitely not my last) "tea" experience.

The Getty Villa's "Tea by the Sea" is available every Thursday at 1pm in the Founders Room @ $36 per person. Click on this link to book your reservation today and prepare for the tea experience of you're life. You'll leave there saying "Lipton who?".

Disclaimer: I was not paid for this post. I was invited to preview the event and the views expressed are my personal and honest opinion. And even after this experience I still enjoy a good cup of microwaved Lipton tea.