The Karamel-Kuche Shop at Epcot Germany

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The Karamell-Kuche treat shop…ahh….all the delicious smells!

Today – April 4, 2018 – is National Caramel Day!

Epcot Germany’s dessert shop – Karamell-Kuche – is by far one of the most delicious places in Epcot!

We’re a huge fan of caramel popcorn!  My dad likes to make it at home at Christmas, but despite all his efforts, this popcorn is probably a million times better!!

Karamell-Kuche is sponsored by Werther’s Original caramel candy so this is what you see when you walk in:

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A wall of caramel candies!

You can watch the cast members mix the fresh popcorn and the caramel.

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Stirring, stirring….it’s very hot!

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Tossing to coat all the popcorn evenly.

Freshly made caramel popcorn, $4

Freshly made caramel popcorn, $4

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We always go for the large bag! Still warm!

My favorite thing to look at while waiting in line are the cute German cast members!

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Me &  my CM friend Sebastian  He made this free bag of caramel popcorn just for me! A Magical Moment!!

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German pastries.

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These caramel apples look so good!

Here is a picture of me eating the strawberry dipped in dark chocolate and drizzled with caramel.  People stopped me in the World Showcase to ask where I got it!  It was delicious!

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Yum!  This strawberry was huge!

And, don’t forget Snow White meets guests daily right outside!

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A hot, hot day at Epcot and not a droplet of sweat on Snow White!  She was beautiful!

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I really do!

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We ❤ Epcot Germany!

Germany Karamell-Kuche Treats

Yes please!!!

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Two Disney Sisters

Two Disney Sisters

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney. Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on Amazon.com:  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

book

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

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Meeting Frozen’s Queen Elsa and Princess Anna at Epcot Norway

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On a good day, the Frozen Ever After wait time is 60 minutes or less. Plan ahead:  All the ride’s Fast Passes are usually gone every day by 9am.

We had Two Magical Moments happen to us at Epcot Norway!

We had two Fast Passes to ride the Frozen Ever After attraction at Epcot Norway…for the three of us.  That was as many Fast Passes as we were able to get that week for an early evening timeslot.

But, the ride cast member let us all in!  There was hardly any wait line, maybe 10 minutes. (It was really close to IllumiNations show time, around 8:35pm.)

We’ve been on the ride several times, but it was our mom’s first time.

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Elsa and Anna are the most advanced animatronics in all of WDW.  Look at their faces!

The Frozen Ever After attraction takes guests to Arendelle and immerses them in the movie’s favorite moments and music.

Frozen Ever After in the Norway Pavilion at Epcot

The 4-minute ride moves along the Frozen storyline pretty fast.

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Let it go, let it go….

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Queen Elsa singing as the long boat goes over the mini falls backwards.

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This is the ride’s best scene.

Watch Frozen Ever After POV (full ride):  Frozen Ever After ride

Olaf has a song to sing too.

Olaf singing his song.

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Marshmallow appears at the end of the boat ride.

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July 2017:  5 Hour wait time under the hot Florida sun!  😦

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Walking into the Frozen meet and greet area.

Anna and Elsa have their meet & greet place right next door to Frozen Ever After.

We did not have Fast Passes for that (none available) but the cast member let us right in!

A seccond Magical Frozen Moment in less than 20 minutes!!!

We gave her a big hug on our way out. Disney Magic at its best.

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Meeting Queen Elsa.

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Princess Anna

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Queen Elsa greeting us.

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Queen Elsa asking us if the winter has been cold in Colorado. (It was cold in Orlando the day we went, 52 degrees!)

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Interested in Disney Bounding as a Frozen character??

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Disney Bounding as Queen Elsa

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Disney Bounding as Princess Anna

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Disney Bounding as Kristoff

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Disney Bounding as Olaf

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Good eats! And you can meet some Disney princesses!  🙂

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The first time we saw the princesses was the week before the movie opened in Nov. 2013…there was only a 5 minute wait to see Anna & Elsa.  No one knew who they were!  We were like: Tell us all about your movie…..

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney.

Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on Amazon.com:  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

book

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

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Frozen in a Bottle – Sampling the New Perfume at Epcot Norway

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Ahhh, smell the wild fjords of Norway!

We finally got to sample the new Frozen in a Bottle perfume which debuted at Epcot Norway last year.

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We were spraying this all over the shop!

The perfume’s scent is based off of elements of Norway and attempts to capture the movie ‘Frozen’ in a one-of-a-kind perfume.

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Lots of bottle sizes in sprays and body creams/lotions available.

The fragrance captures the essence of the ‘Frozen’ movie and its cohesive involvement with nature. The scent was designed to showcase the awesome forces of nature exhibited within the film and the two princesses, Anna and Elsa.

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Puffins Roost at Epcot Norway

Fragrance designer Gier Ness has been at Puffin’s Roost signing autographs and meeting with park guests many times. Guests can sample all his perfumes there for free.

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Fragrance designer Geir Ness

The new Frozen fragrance sells for $74 for the 3.4-ounce bottle and $52 for the 1.7-ounce one.  It’s also available online Frozen in a Bottle.

Perfume sampling area.

Perfume sampling area. Guests can try Laila and Frozen for free!

Mr. Ness, a native of Oslo, Norway, creates fragrances that embody the full experience of nature in Norway that users can experience without ever leaving the United States.

Gier created the fragrance Laila for women. According to Ness, the Laila perfume – which is wildly popular with Epcot guests – was inspired by his mother.

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We prefer the scent of his Laila perfume over Frozen in a Bottle.

Caroline buying a new bottle for 2015.

Caroline buying a new bottle of Laila perfume.

We actually own several bottles of Laila – it’s one of Caroline’s favorite perfumes!

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This is the perfume we smell on guests walking around Epcot. It’s very popular.

Buying Laila Perfume – The Essence of Norway on Amazon.com.

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He sells cologne for men too.

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Frozen in a Bottle.  (We really like the bottle’s design and color!)

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Two Disney Sisters.

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney. Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on Amazon.com:  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

***

Painting at Epcot’s 2018 International Festival of the Arts

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The 2018 International Festival of the Arts

What:  2018 Epcot International Festival of the Arts

When:   January 12 to February 19, 2018

We got a chance to go to the 2018 International Festival of the Arts last month for the first time.

We like to do something new on every trip.

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Where everyone is an artist.

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Disney paintings everywhere!

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A new wall mural is painted every day.  (Free)   Today’s mural was ‘The Faces of Figment’.

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We chose the blue color, #7.  You were supposed to paint at least 4 squares in your color.  Free festival passport.

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4 blue squares.  Done!  Stayed within the lines!  I am a Disney artist!!!

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Free postcard when you’re done painting. ‘The Faces of Figment’.

Coolest thing was the Living Sculptures!

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There were 6 of them. So cool!

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Space

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Energy

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Motion

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Meeting Mickey and Goofy at Innovations.

Things to see:

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Artists at work.  They paint from opening to closing.

Festival highlights include:

  • Artist appearances
  • Artful photo ops
  • Workshops and seminars with visiting artists
  • Commemorative merchandise
  • Community arts musical showcase
  • Culinary masterpieces
  • Destinations Discovered Tour
  • Disney on Broadway Concert Series
  • Gallery exhibits
  • IllumiNations
  • Interactive mural
  • Living statues
  • Walking chalk gallery and more!

Even More to Explore!

  • Figment’s Brush with the Masters Scavenger Hunt
  • Kidcot Fun Stops
  • World Showcase: DestiNations Discovered Tour
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Cookie painting!  We tried this cookie!

The Festival of the Arts features five unique food booths, each with an eclectic menu that puts an emphasis on presentation and plating as much as bold flavors.

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Paint your own pop tart (with icing!). Caroline bought this poptart,

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Caroline’s colorful poptart. It was very good!

Original artwork will be on display at the Odyssey Festival Showplace located in the Odyssey building near the entrance to World Showcase.

In addition, chalk artists will reproduce classic works on canvas as well as park sidewalks, Epcot Living Statues literally come to life and guest performance artists create magic on the spot—with only a wave of their paintbrush!

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Almond Cake (very good)

Several Disney artists will be appearing throughout the festival including Jason Grandt, David Buckley, Jerrod Maruyama, and Kristin Tercek.

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Disney on Broadway concert series

The America Gardens Theatre offers the free Broadway Concert Series, with songs from Aladdin, Newsies, The Lion King and more. Guests can sing along to sensational, show-stopping renditions of unforgettable Disney hits… bravo!  Visit the America Gardens Theatre stage at 5:30 p.m., 6:45 p.m. and 8 p.m. on each festival day to catch the Disney on Broadway Concert Series.

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The 2018 International Festival of the Arts at Epcot!

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Epcot’s 2018 Festival of the Arts

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Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney. Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on Amazon.com:  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

***

2018 Epcot’s International Flower and Garden Festival: Celebrating 25 Years

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Welcome to Epcot’s 2018 International Flower and Garden Festival!

Highlights for the 2018 International Flower and Garden Festival include:

  • Outdoor Kitchens offering delectable small plates, and flavorful non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages—along with several new food and refreshment kiosks
  • More than 70 world-renowned Disney-themed topiaries—including many totally original displays
  • Vibrant gardens, flower towers, wildlife habitats and walkways—some being presented for the very first time
  • Inspirational exhibits, seminars, how-to demonstrations and all-new farm-to-table dining experiences
  • Garden Rocks Outdoor Concert Series featuring throwback beats from fan-favorite bands—with an assortment of debuting acts and dining packages
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Bring your camera!!

Kicks off today and runs through the end of May!

February 28, 2018 – May 28, 2018 – the extended 2018 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival at Epcot is amazing!

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2018 International Flower and Garden Festival starts today!

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Flowers, flowers, flowers!

There is a dazzling array of over 70 topiary displays, gardens and exhibits—each featuring seasonal designs or several popular Disney characters, including:

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Queen Elsa and Princess Anna.  Look at their hair!!!

Festival Blooms – Future World East and West Lake

Fantasia – Future World West

Ranger Mickey & Friends – Future World

Figment – Future World behind Spaceship Earth

Stitch – Fountain-side of MouseGear

Disney Pixar’s Buzz Lightyear – Near Mission Space

Disney Pixar’s Cruz Besouro from the – Near Test Track

Phineas and Ferb – Near Odyssey Bridge

Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, and Pluto – Showcase Plaza

Anna and Elsa – Norway

Bromeliad Dragon – China

Panda presented by Disneynature – China

The Lion King Featuring Mufasa, Pumbaa, Rafiki, Sarabi, Simba and Timon – The Outpost between the Germany and China Pavilion

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Snow White

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs – Germany

Lady and the Tramp – Italy

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Woody

Disney Pixar’s Woody – The American Adventure

Beauty and the Beast – France

Belle – France

The Three Caballeros – Mexico

Winnie the Pooh and Friends – United Kingdom

Peter Pan, Tinker Bell & Fairy Houses from Pixie Hollow – United Kingdom

Bambi and Friends featuring Bambi, Flower, and Thumper – Canada

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Donald Duck

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Farmer Mickey and Minnie

Farmer Mickey & Minnie Located between Future World and World Showcase

Bambi & Friends Featuring Bambi, Flower and Thumper Located at the Canada Pavilion

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Peter Pan and Captain Hook.

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Lovely!  Princess Aurora and Prince Phillip dancing at sunset.

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The Lion King

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Beauty and the Beast

Yes, there are flowers, but there’s also special foods available during the festival!

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Wrist gift cards for Epcot’s Flower and Garden Festival, for eating and drinking your way around the world. 😉

THE OUTDOOR KITCHENS

Set up around the World Showcase, Outdoor Kitchens offer regional and national delicacies to sample and taste, with the emphasis on fresh-from-the-garden goodness. Small plates and beverages give guests the chance to try specialty recipes from many international locations!

Most dishes are in the $3 – $8 range. Don’t forget that many of these are available for a Disney Dining Food snack credit!

Our tip:  Plan on spending about $60 sampling all the cuisine.

The F&G Festival is so beautiful!

The F&G Festival is so beautiful!  (I took this photo on my cell phone last year!)  Over 200 floating mini-gardens in the bay!

THE FESTIVAL GARDENS

And, don’t forget to stop by and see the special butterfly pavilion and all the special gardens of the festival!

From Bonsai trees to butterflies, there’s a bounty of displays ready to capture your family’s attention and imagination. Highlights include:

Bonsai Collection – Branch out to the Japan Pavilion to cultivate an appreciation for an ancient art form that produces the most amazing miniature trees.

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The Butterflies on the Go pavilion

Butterflies hatching.

Butterflies hatching daily.

Butterflies on the Go presented by GoGo squeeZ – Float over to this happening habitat in Future World to get an up-close glimpse at several species of butterflies—they may even brush by your shoulder during the exciting walkthrough tour.

English Tea Garden hosted by Twinings of London – Ripen your knowledge of the art and history of tea during this 20-minute guided tour. Afterwards, capture the cutest photos of tea-flavoring plants tucked inside giant saucers that are strewn throughout the garden.

Floating Mini-Gardens – Gaze upon 225 petite plots drifting on the ponds that border the walkway between Future World and World Showcase.

Health & Healing Garden – Glide over to The Land to discover ancient plants that have the ability to heal!

Illuminated Gardens – See Epcot with new wonder as select Disney topiaries and Festival playgrounds all across the park glow with light as the Flower & Garden fun continues into the night!

Pepper Fire Garden – Think you can take the heat? Head to The Land Pavilion to peek at the world’s hottest peppers.

Prehistoric Plants – Spot examples of greenery that existed when dinosaurs roamed the earth at Future World East.

Purple Martins Presented by Audubon Florida – Stop and listen to the tranquil sound of this special species of songbird at Future World East. The Purple Martins arrived back at WDW last night!

Shakespeare Garden – Thou shalt adore matching up famous quotes to flowers found within this vibrant garden in the United Kingdom Pavilion.

THE MUSIC OF THE FESTIVAL

Garden Rocks Outdoor Concert Series featuring throwback beats from fan-favorite bands with new acts added this year.  Always a crowd pleaser!

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New Magic Bands for the 2018 festival.  $32.99

MERCHANDISE

The Disney pin team has created several 2018 limited edition pins featuring the F&G topiaries.

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2018 Flower and Garden Festival pins.

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New 2018 F&G pin featuring Figment.

 

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So pretty!

So pretty! And the flowering trees are just starting to bloom!

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2018 F&G Festival mug

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Epcot France Pavilion in the late morning sunlight.

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Interested in Disney Bounding to the Flower and Garden Festival??? Here’s some ideas.

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Two Disney Sisters

Two Disney Sisters

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney. Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on Amazon.com:  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

book

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

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Flowers surrounding Friendship Bay at Epcot

One last photo….Thousands of colorful flowers surrounding Friendship Bay at Epcot –  30 million blossoms!  We were waiting for the monorail to show up!

The 5 Magic Walls of Disney World

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The famous Purple Wall at MK in all its glory.

It’s a fun photo scavenger hunt to find these “Disney Walls” in the WDW parks.

The best WDW walls for your next Instagram photo are:

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Elly in front of the #PurpleWall.

#1:  Magic Kingdom Park’s #PurpleWall – The famous #PurpleWall is kind of cool. It’s located in Magic Kingdom near the Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor in Tomorrowland.

It’s a pale purple blank wall that really doesn’t look like anything special. Except it is. It’s a wildly popular spot to have your photo taken – or take a selfie – and then post it on Instagram. Posting link: https://www.instagram.com/purplewallphotos/

The wall photographs really well. Its medium lilac color is a flattering background color on everyone, there’s good indirect lighting there, and it’s just enough out of the way that you don’t have an audience watching you pose.

So, take your time and get out your cell phone….and snap a few photos of you and your friends!

Action:  Next time you’re walking in Tomorrowland, stop for a few seconds at the #PurpleWall and take some photos.

Action Rating:  Worth it!

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#BubbleGumWall

#2:  Epcot’s #BubbleGumWall – This tri-color wall is just outside the exit of Spaceship Earth on the right.

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#BlueberryWall

#3:  Epcot’s #BlueberryWall – Two steps away from the #BubbleGumWall is the bright #BlueberryWall.

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#BigBlueWall looks like sea waves.

#4:  Epcot’s #TheBigBlueWall –You can find the #TheBigBlueWall upon exiting The Seas With Nemo and Friends pavilion.

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There’s even a nice bench to sit on in front of the #MossWall.

#5: NEW WALL!!! Disney’s Animal Kingdom’s #MossWall  – Head into Pandora – The World of Avatar and walk towards Satu’li Canteen. Just opposite the restaurant’s front door is the newest and very popular Disney wall, which you can spot on Instagram under the hashtag #MossWall.

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There are actually lots of cool moss walls all over Pandora!

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April 9, 2018 Update:  The solid Purple Wall in Tomorrowland is no more!

It’s all different-colored purple triangles, with sort of an Epcot look.  Just a tiny bit of the #PurpleWall is left by the restrooms.

And, the new wall it has it’s own Instagram!   #GalacticPurpleWall  

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The new Purple Wall – what do you think of it???

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Feb 28, 2018: The brand new Purple Wall Magic Bands! 🙂

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How many walls have you ‘captured’ at Disney World???

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Bonus Walls:

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Epcot’s ‘Salute to Space’ Wall – Next to the Imagination Pavilion in Future World West is the Chase Disney Visa character meet and greet area. The space wall is in the waiting line.

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Hidden Mickey!

The Living with The Land wall’s Hidden Mickey.

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At the Guardians of the Galaxy #GreenWall

And, don’t forget about the new #GreenWall at Disney California Adventure in Disneyland, CA.  It’s by the Guardians of the Galaxy attraction (formerly the Tower of Terror…)

Beautiful lime green color!
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housing2Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney.

Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on Amazon.com:  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

book

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

**** 

Honey Bees Recycle the Grand Floridian Gingerbread House

Taking down the GF Gingerbread House in January 2015.

Taking down the GF Gingerbread House the first week in January.  The gingerbread is composted.

A behind-the-scenes look at what happens to all the gingerbread from the 2017 Grand Floridian Gingerbread House  display when it was taken down in early January 2018.

Royal icing used to glue the gingerbread pieces to the house.

Closeup of the Royal Frosting used to glue the gingerbread pieces to the house.

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Washing off the icing with plain water.

The house frame is reused every year.

The house frame is reused every year.

Cool video of the WDW bees working hard: Bees Recycle Disney Gingerbread

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A honey bee going from flower to flower.

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A cold honey bee landed on our car at the DAK parking lot!

Those same honey bees have a ball at Epcot’s International Flower and Garden Festival  in the spring!

Your favorite Disney gingerbread houses from the Walt Disney World Resort are shared with bees to help pollinate the spectacular flowers blooming right now during the 24nd Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival!  Come on by and see the spectacular flower displays!

30 million blooms!

30 million blooms! Come and see it!

Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival

2018 Epcot’s International Flower & Garden Festival starts February 28, 2018.

The F&G Festival is so beautiful!

The F&G Festival is so beautiful! (I took this photo on my cell phone!)

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January 2018:  It was cold when we were at Disney World this month!  All the newly planted flowers were covered up at Epcot:

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Tampa set a new low last night – 28 degrees!

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Disney trying to protect all those pretty flowers for the F&G Festival starting next month!

 

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Two Disney Sisters

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

   by Elly Collins & Caroline Collins

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Disney???

We worked at WDW for a year in the Disney College Program and have written a book about what it’s like to be a cast member working for Disney.

We’ve included advice on how to successfully get into the DCP program, including some of the actual phone interview questions, how to have a successful internship, and how not self-term before your program ends. Our book is filled with lots of behind-the-scene stories of the magic of Disney. Available now at Amazon.com in paperback and Kindle formats. Published by Theme Park Press.

Book link on Amazon.com:  Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

book

Two Girls and a Mouse Tale

***