Monday, March 26, 2018

New Flower Hunt at Epcot's International Flower and Garden Festival!


Before I moved to FL a year and a half ago, I wanted to fly down from NY just so I could participate in the egg hunt (or "Eggstravaganza") during Flower and Garden.  It looks like it started in 2014 with these eggs as the prizes:

from disneyparks.disney.go.com

Now that I see what the first options were, I'm so upset I didn't actually go!  😂  I think these are the cutest out of all the ones I've seen!  Later on they added ones like the Cheshire cat, Lady & the Tramp (2 different ones so you'd need 2 maps), Jessie and Woody, and Dory and Nemo.  You have to buy a map, then look around Epcot (there is also a Disneyland one, I don't know how that operates) for the character eggs hidden in all different countries around World Showcase.  It's the cutest Easter egg hunt EVER.  (They have other search-and-finds like the Ratatouille one a couple years ago you can read about here, the Festival of the Arts one where you had to locate a specific painting in each country, and the one I wrote about in my last post with Chip & Dale on hidden wreaths around each country.)

So I was thrilled when I got to participate last year and got myself a Mickey egg!  (I later found BINS of them at Cast Connection--a special store only Disney Cast Members are allowed into but they can bring friends and family as guests--I HIGHLY recommend a visit!  But this made it seem so not special that I didn't get any.  And where would I put them?  I value the one I earned!!  And I keep it on my bathroom counter.)

I saw the options for this year, and I wasn't crazy about them, but I did see a NEW search and find with a long-lost character, Spike the Bee, from Donald Duck cartoons of the 1950's and 60's!


Spike's Pollen-Nation Exploration!  Just like the other search and finds, you have to find something in almost every country.  This time you had to find a special flower or plant in each garden.  It was a bit easier than other search and finds because they were all on the ground, in specific gardens.  They each had a photo of the plant sticking up out of the ground with an adorable model of Spike hanging out right next to it.
                       
The one by Mexico was probably the hardest.  No, I'm wrong, the hardest for me was the one in Savanna because I didn't see that one!!  I'll have to check again next time if they're still up.  I didn't really mind because I had found all the rest and I could use process of elimination (plus they don't even check.  I actually heard a cast member ask if someone buying the map wanted their prize before they even started searching--where's the fun in that!!?).  

Before I bought the map (you get your usual discount if you are an Annual Passholder--which I JUST BECAME so this blog is going to get a well-deserved facelift, at least in content and frequency of posts!) I asked what the prize was.  It was a set of patches with characters on them.  (For Festival of the Arts last year, they were magnets of classic art pieces with Figment in them--I don't know if they did it this year.  For the Ratatouille one you could get a really nice quality pin with Remy and the vegetable of your choice.  For the Chip & Dale wreaths one you get a set of buttons--the circular pins with safety-pin kind of backs of the ornaments you found and one larger one of Chip & Dale.)

I was trying to be non-chalant about taking a photo of all the options so it's not the best angle:

(and someone else's hand--I'm not engaged 😂)
I was really torn between the Figment set and the Mickey set, but the Mickey set had Orange Bird, and Figment had 2 with just writing on them.  So, sorry Figment, you still have my heart, but there's just not enough Orange Bird merch going around (unless you go to the Disney dress shop--there's a dress, an adorable purse, and jewelry of him).  I haven't decided where I'm putting them yet but I'm happy with what I got!  I'd say the Exploration was totally worth it.  It's fun to have a purpose and notice things you normally may not.

As for the Eggstravaganza--the options this year include the updated cartoon shorts versions of Mickey and Minnie (not my cup of tea), Mike Wazowski and Sulley, and Cinderella and Belle.  If you are an AP you can purchase a set of 2 Star Wars eggs for $9.99 plus your discount.  They are of a storm trooper and C3PO!

I believe you can purchase the maps at various spots but I know for sure you can get them at the Port of Entry at the beginning of World Showcase, and at World Travelers, which is at the back entrance/exit by the Beach Club resort.  You can only redeem your maps at the main shops on either side of the entrance to World Showcase (definitely at Port of Entry, and I imagine at the one facing it too.  There is another one, right?  Anyway go to Port of Entry if you're in doubt!).




Thursday, December 28, 2017

Holidays Around the World at Epcot's Festival of Holidays!

Last year was my first taste of Christmas at Disney when I went to Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party.  This year I went to Epcot with my brothers (now that my brother in law works for Disney, we're there a lot more often!) and got to experience Epcot International Festival of the Holidays!

First of all, the decorations at the entrance were perfect:

Like the scene from Big Fish but with Poinsettias!

I looked for these globe ornaments all over the park but couldn't find any!  Maybe next year, Epcot?










Gotta love Disney topiaries!


On a side-note, I absolutely love this 80's Epcot Mickey & Minnie window display!  These are the costumes Mickey & Minnie wore when we were kids!

Super cute Goofy and Donald holiday photo op!

We had to ride Figment's Journey into Imagination (in dire need of an update.. bring back Dreamfinder!) and I never noticed this adorable wall!!

It was a little overcast and chilly so my photos weren't as bright as I'd like..


Tree details

I am a sucker for any and all of these scavenger hunt maps throughout Epcot!! I've done the egg hunt (where you earn an Easter Egg of a Disney character), and the Figment one last winter during Festival of the Arts (you get a magnet of a famous painting featuring Figment).  I also did the Ratatouille Hide & Squeak (my first one) where, when you're done, you get a nice quality pin of Remy with an ingredient that matches the map stickers!

This one features Chip & Dale each with a different wreath around the world!  It was sometimes difficult to find (especially when I started and wasn't exactly sure what I was looking for--glad I got to share this info with some other people with maps and lost looks).  They were frequently found at Kidcot stations around the "world."

Here they all are (click to see in a separate window):































Even if you're not in the search, they're still fun to find!  And here's what you get:

 A whole set of pins, but not the usual Disney kind--the button kind (which is still super cute).  You get one big pin with Chip & Dale on it, and 5 little ones from the assorted wreaths!  You can pick from 3 sets, which overlap in options so you can usually get all the ones you want!

So cute!


There was also amazing food at special holiday booths in every country!

New Year Celebration Soba (which I've had before since my brother in law is from Japan!)--it was warm and delicious.  Definitely hit the spot!


The Buche de Noel (Yule Log) from France--the meringue mushroom was perfect!!  (I made my own buche de noel this year and made my own mushrooms--now that I know how time-consuming and fragile they are, I applaud Disney for making so many of these for each buche!!)

Seared Salmon from Canada (the sauce was very maple-y) was the last thing I had, and amazing.


Tostada de Tinga from Mexico actually started my day!

Here are some of the decorations around the park:



Inside the American Adventure

Gudetama tree toppers in Japan's gift shop

I think this was my favorite!!  I have this Spode design on a tea towel in my kitchen which I bought after moving here because it was on our Christmas glasses at home!


Inside the "cookie nook"

Super cute snowman topiary on our way out.

It was an amazing time and my new holiday favorite!!  I also realized I've been to every Epcot festival this year!  Perks of living in FL!  If you haven't been to this one yet, you can still get over in the next few days--it's over Dec 30!!

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Sleep like a Beauty

Have you ever wanted to sleep like a princess?  (Not the Princess and the Pea--that would be me 😂)  I recently came across Furniture.com's new and exclusive line of Disney furniture!  I found beds, dressers, bookcases, recliners, canopies--everything fit for a queen!

Not only do they have gorgeous princess beds (like the twin daybed and the full panel bed)





They also have beds for amateur racers:

And pirates in training!


I especially love this precious bookcase, and the spot for EVEN MORE BOOKS on the side!




So if you're in the market for some magic, try furniture.com's Disney bed sets and furniture to help your little one have sweet dreams!