Friday, August 26, 2016

Fun Find: Disney Puppies Video

Hi friends!  I have a special Fun Find Friday to share with you!  Today is National Dog Day.  So naturally, I think of all the cute doggies in the world.  I love dogs.  In fact, Eliot and I are dying to get a puppy down the road.  Right now, our plan is to possibly get one as soon as this spring after our house is (hopefully) fully re-painted.

In the meantime, I watch cute puppy and dog videos online occasionally.  But there's one video I've seen a ton of times.  This is my all time favorite YouTube video.  The Disney Channel has started to put it on during their commercials, and every time I hear the music, I stop, drop, and go to the living room to watch it.  Again.  And again... 

I don't think there's any other video that could ever be cuter than puppies in Disney costumes.  They're adorable.  I love how they even attempted at recreating some of the scenes from Aladdin, The Little Mermaid and Tangled.  The little puppy in the Olaf costume is probably my favorite.  I love Olaf.  And I love puppies.

So, if you've had a long week, watch this.  You'll feel better.  I promise.  °o°

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Elissa Arrives for College

Later on tonight, Eliot's youngest sister, Elissa, arrives in Maine for college.  On one hand, it's hard to believe that the nine year old girl I first met about eight years ago is ready to go off to college.  But on the other hand, I see what a beautiful, smart, strong and caring young woman she's become and I know it's time.

Later on tonight, Eliot and I will pick Elissa up at the airport.  We'll take inventory of all her dorm stuff in our basement that's been mailed out ahead of time.  We'll take her shopping for any dorm room and college supplies she wasn't able to bring or mail ahead.  Then, the three of us will enjoy one last bit of "summer" on Saturday before getting ready to move her in to UNE on Sunday.

Time certainly flies.  But I have to admit how excited Eliot are to have Elissa so close by.  She's stayed with us for 5-6 weeks over the past two summers for "Camp Cady" and it's been a blast.  From going to Old Orchard Beach, to Acadia National Park, Bar Harbor, Six Flags, the Yankee Candle Flagship Store, going to movies, shopping at the mall, working on crafts, going mini golfing to enjoying all that Maine has to offer, we've had a lot of fun.  And while her primary reason for being here is to get an education, I'm sure that there will be plenty more fun to be had along the way!

To me, this new beginning feels more like a homecoming of sorts.  A welcome home to our favorite summer camper.

Welcome to your new home Elissa.  While California and San Jose will always be home, know that you're welcomed with open arms to your other home.  Eliot and I can't wait to see where this new adventure takes you!  °o°

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

2017 Calendars Are Done

As I mentioned yesterday, Eliot and I have been really busy lately.  Somewhere in the middle of everything, I found time to make my 2017 Mickey and Minnie calendars!  And I'm so happy to announce that they're officially all done!

I've emailed them to all of the people who have been patiently waiting for them.  If you've been waiting to ask, now's the time to send a quick email to my blog email account: mydisneylifeblog[at]  Then, I'll send you back the PDF versions.

As always, I'll continue to post at the beginning of each month right here!  Enjoy!!!  °o°

Monday, August 22, 2016

Sweet Summertime

Hi Friends!  I'm back after an unplanned week and a half blogging break.  Eliot and I have been insanely busy the past week or so.  Every night, my head hits the pillow and I'm out cold.  The next morning, I'm up and at 'em way before my alarm is scheduled to go off.  It's been crazy, but everything is good.

It's hard to believe that we're coming up on the end of August!  Some kids are already back in school!  (What?!?!)  In Maine, most of our kids go back after Labor Day.  I never went back before and that weekend pretty much signifies the "end of summer" here in Maine.  While we haven't done as many fun summer things as I'd hoped, Eliot and I have still made time to enjoy ourselves while still being very productive.

Last Thursday, we went over to Old Orchard Beach to enjoy the weekly fireworks display.  We realized this was the last one we'd be able to catch, since this Thursday, Elissa's flight arrives the same time as the fireworks.  It was nice to walk around the beach.  We'll probably go over a few more times before it gets too cold this fall.

The past two weekends, we've gone over to our local amusement/waterpark, Funtown Splashtown, to have a little break.  Last Sunday, we went on a few rides in Funtown, and then ended the day at Splashdown.  Yesterday, we only had time to make it to Splashtown, but a few hours in the slowly setting summer sun was just what we needed before coming home and heading back to work.  The park doesn't close until the weekend after Labor Day, so we're hoping to go a few more times!

We've both been really busy working on our side businesses.  Eliot's had a few soap orders to make, and when he isn't doing that he's been tirelessly working on new IllusionEar designs.  Our lists of ideas are constantly growing.  He's even surprised me with a few he didn't tell me about!  (New England Patriots Ears!!!)  Right now, we're working on designs for my fellow Key to the World friends since our annual conference is about 5 weeks away.  After that, we'll probably be debuting a TON of new designs in my shop.  I'll be sure to keep you posted, but for now, enjoy this sneak peek!

The main reason I've been away from my blogging is definitely the Olympics.  I've been camped out in our living room watching volleyball, beach volleyball, gymnastics, track and field, rowing, diving, running, swimming and more.  My favorites are always volleyball, women's gymnastics, and swimming, but it's so easy to get sucked in to whatever sport they're showing.  Thankfully, I've been making ears at our dining room table so I've been able to work on orders and listen to the Olympics.  It's been so inspiring watching all of the athletes and hearing their stories!  I'm so proud of our athletes and all of their accomplishments!  Go Team USA!

Anyways, now that the Olympics are over, I'm moving on to what's next.  Eliot's and my biggest priorities are making ears for KeyCon, preparing for our Walt Disney World trip and for our first ever Disney Cruise!  I'm glued to my to do list, but things are definitely getting crossed off.  (More things keep getting added, but they'll get done eventually!)

As I mentioned earlier, Elissa arrives in Maine on Thursday, and Eliot and I will be helping her move onto campus next weekend.  Labor Day weekend, Eliot and I are off to California for a wedding!  We're planning to go back to the Walt Disney Family Museum while we're out there.  I'd love to go to the San Francisco Disney Store and we might do a little bit of sightseeing if there's time.  We'll see!

I'm sure these next few weeks are going to be an adventure.  I'm just going to hang on tight and see where the journey takes me!  °o°

Friday, August 12, 2016

Isaac's Olaf Birthday Party

Hi friends!  It's been another busy week.  When I haven't been at work, I've been home trying to complete tasks on my growing to do list while listening to the Olympics in the background!  (I've made some progress today, but I think it's going to be another busy weekend.)  Thankfully, it hasn't been all work and no play!

Last weekend, Eliot and I went up to my parents' house for a weekend getaway.  My cousin's little boy, Isaac, was celebrating his third birthday!  You might recall that we also went to Isaac's Mickey themed party for his first birthday.  I helped Kaitlin plan some of that party.  This time around, he had an Olaf themed party.

A few months ago, I sent Kaitlin a bunch of ideas I'd found on Pinterest.  I threw Eliot a surprise Olaf themed party for his 27th birthday last year.  I still had a ton of ideas that I wasn't able to use.  Plus, this was more of a summer Olaf themed event.  Fun!

Eliot, Nana and I arrived a little early so we could help with some last minute prep work.  Kaitlin had me draw Olaf's face and buttons on the floating snowman in blue Jello, or "Happy Snowman."  I think it came out really cute!  Pinterest win!

We had a blast and I'm pretty sure all the kids had a ton of fun.  Kaitlin and David have the perfect backyard for hosting parties.  There's plenty of room to play.  There was themed food, an Olaf piƱata, and even a water balloon "snowball" fight at the end.  But I didn't take photos of the water balloon fight.  I was afraid my phone would get hit!

I think my favorite detail was Isaac's birthday cake!  It was another idea off of Pinterest and it's so simple to make a cute beach scene using brown sugar!  The cupcakes were also really cute with their little sunglasses and umbrellas!

Happy Birthday Isaac!!!  I hope you enjoyed your Olaf birthday party!!! °o°

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Disney Pixar Blog Hop August 2016

Welcome to the Disney Pixar Blog Hop!

Disney and crafting are a magical combination, and we are so happy you joined us to day for this blog hop.  Some of the crafters participating in this event have been doing this together since 2011!  Over the years the hop has grown but one thing has always stayed the same . . . amazing crafting projects that feature your favorite characters from Disney and Pixar movies.

For 2016, we are going to have a hop every other month for the entire year!  If you missed one of the hops we already had this year, you can still go back and see the projects.  For February click HERE, for April click HERE and for June click HERE.  If you are on Facebook you can like the group page so that you can be the first to learn about each upcoming event.  Just click HERE to go the the Facebook page.

To make sure you don't miss any of the fun, be sure to start at Shawn's blog to see all of the projects.  Just click HERE to head over to Shawn's blog and then follow the hop line up at the bottom of the post to see everyone's projects.

Tinker Bell Pop Purse Charm

It's no secret that I love sparkles and I love "bling".  I'm also a sucker for anything that's bright and colorful.  Recently, I've been loving the trend of adding a "purse charm" to your handbag for some extra sparkle.  I've been wanting to make one for a while now, and when I spotted Tinker Bell the other day, I knew it was meant to be.

I love how my Tinker Bell Pop Purse Charm came out!  It's bright, colorful, fun, sparkly and the perfect edition to my Disney Dooney and Burke Sketch Handbag.

Want to make your own Disney Pop Purse Charm?  Here's how I did it:

Disney Pop Keychain (I used Tinker Bell)
Large Glass Seed Beads in Various Colors
Head Pins
Jewelry Chain
Clasps and Hooks
Jewelry Pliers- Wire Cutters, Chain Nose Pliers and Round Nose Pliers
Ruler (not pictured)
Safety Glasses (optional but recommended)

1.) Prepare Chain
Measure a 6" long section of chain and use wire cutters to clip it.  Set the rest aside.

2.) Create Bead Dangles
Take one of your beads and place it on a head pin.  Use your round nose pliers to create a small loop right above the bead.  Wrap the wire back around the head pin two times.  Repeat with different colors of beads until you have a stack.  (I made about 25.)

3.) Clip Extra Wire
When you're done, clip the extra head pin wire off using your wire cutters.  Please be careful when cutting wires.  They sometimes with go flying once clipped.

4.) Attach Bead Dangles to Chain
Use your chain nose pliers (the flat ones) to separate sections of chain.  (I separated it like you would a jump ring.)  Place one or two bead bangles on the chain and then pull the sides of chain back together.  I put two beads on every other section of chain.  It really depends on how close together you want the beads.  Repeat attaching bead dangles until you get about halfway up the chain.

5.) Attach Hooks
Once you're done attaching all of your beads, you need to add the hooks.  I placed my hook on the chain link right above the beads.  Then, use your chain nose pliers to add the clasp to the top of your chain.  Finally, add one more hook to the bottom under all of your beads.  I used a smaller style hook and clasp for the top and middle of the chain.  Then, I used the larger hook style for the bottom.  (See photo above.)

6.) Add Pop Charm
Take your Pop charm and unhook it from the keychain.  They conveniently come with a clasp already attached!  Attach it to the larger hook at the bottom of the chain, and you're done!  Loop the chain around the handle of your handbag and attach the clasp to the hook in the center of the chain.

Perfect right?  The best part of this purse charm design is that since the Pop can easily be detached, you can switch between different characters.  You can also move the charm higher up on the chain if you want to attach it to the clasp in the middle and have the beads dangle separately!  (Pictured below.)

I love it!  Step out in style and enjoy your new Disney Pop Purse Charm!!!  °o°

Before you go, make sure to enter to win our prize for this hop . . .

We have a prize from Clear Scraps!  You could win one of their sandcastle chipboard albums!  This is perfect for your summer beach photos or with a little magic, this castle becomes the home for any Disney Princess.

- - - 
a Rafflecopter giveaway
- - -

Good luck, and enjoy the rest of the hop!

The full blog hop line up is below.  


Friday, August 5, 2016

An Unmagical Experience

Well, guys... I guess it was bound to happen at some point, but I'm really angry.  This time, Disney failed me.  And they failed me big time.  There's nothing quite like placing the order you've waited all summer for, only to find out that it apparently doesn't exist in the computer system.  (Even though it's still showing in your account's order history.)

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Tuesday was the big day: Tsum Tsum Tuesday and the release of the online exclusive Elliot the dragon tsums from Pete's Dragon.  I haven't shared this before, but my husband, Eliot, was partially named after Elliot the dragon.  Thus, Elliot the dragon is very special to us.  There isn't much merchandise you can get for him to begin with, so when we find something, we get it.  Since the new live action version of the movie is coming out in a few days, now is the time to look for Elliot items.

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Tuesday morning, at 8:00 am Eastern Time, I placed my order for the Beauty and the Beast collection, and some Elliot tsums.  By some, I mean 5 minis and 3 mediums- enough for myself, Eliot, his sister Elissa, and a few extras so Eliot could have one on his desk at work.  (The maximum of any tsum tsum item per order is 5 of each item.)

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I got the confirmation page saying my order was complete, but I didn't get an email right away.  I thought this was strange, but I'd heard online that people were having problems with the website so I figured it was just backlogged and I'd get the email later in the day.  In hindsight, this should have been my first clue that something was wrong.

I went about my day, and I even checked in occasionally to see if the medium and mini Elliot's were still in stock.  He didn't sell out until sometime mid-afternoon.

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When I came home from work, I still hadn't gotten an email.  I decided that I better investigate.  I went to Eliot's PayPal account, and according to that, the order had been cancelled.  According to our bank, it was still pending.  That's when I went online.  I still had the order in my account history on the Disney Store's website, but the transaction date was December 31, 1969.

I immediately called the Disney Store Customer Service phone number.  I didn't get very far with the first girl.  My order wasn't in their system.  She told me to re-order the merchandise, and wasn't really getting the fact that they were sold out for good.  ("We restock our website every night at midnight.")  She also gave me a website and told me to send them the screen shots I'd taken after I got the original order confirmation screen.  (You'll note that I ordered them at 8:12 in the morning.)

When I sent the email, it was the incorrect email address, so I called Disney Store customer service phone number again.  The second girl told me the other girl missed a dash in the email.  So I sent it again.  (Almost 72 full hours later, and I still haven't heard anything back from them.)

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After that, I was literally shaking I was so angry.  I called again because I wasn't exactly content to sit and wait, and I had a hunch that I'd never hear back from them.  I tried to calmly explain the situation to the third girl, and I finally lost my cool when she kept repeating that the merchadise was refreshed and restocked at midnight.  I needed to "wait to see if the merchandise comes back available."  I basically went into a long winded explaination about how that wasn't the case with limited edition merchandise and how this wasn't fair to me when I did everything I should have to do on my end.

And I'm pretty sure she muted me.  When I was done my tirade, it took her 15 full seconds to answer me.  After the line was silent, I said hello a few times, and then more time passed before she even answered me.  That was the last straw.

I won't beat around the bush, I'm livid with the Disney Store.  The way this was handled was completely inappropriate.  And apparently I'm not the only customer this situation happened to.  According to their Facebook page, a bunch of people had the same thing happen.  And the cookie cutter answer all of the customer representatives say is to wait and see if it gets re-stocked.  The merchandise isn't going to become back available.  I'm still waiting to see if the online exclusive Boo and Celia are going to magically show up during a re-stocking.  Not likely.

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It's not fair to me that I placed an order, and it never went through on their side.  I got the confirmation number.  How was I supposed to know that the order didn't actually exist?  How will I ever know if my order went through or not?  I guess the confirmation email is key.  If you don't get one of those, you better call the Disney Store right away.

The story doesn't have a completely awful ending.  My brother is awesome.  I called Jeremy to tell him what happened and he literally dropped what he was doing to go to his local store.  I called him at 8:30 and by 8:50 pm he was at the shopping plaza and running to get there before they closed.  He called me back a few minutes later.  They didn't have any further information about Elliot, but he did get me the Beauty and the Beast tsum set in person so I didn't have to deal with the website anymore that night.

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As for the Elliot tsums, I got screwed over there.  I paid three times as much for a medium Elliot tsum off eBay.  Then, I shelled out more than 4 times what a normal mini tsum would cost.  Basically, I could have gotten all of the original Elliot tsum tsums I ordered for the price it cost me to get one of each off eBay.

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This entire experience stinks and it's put a bad taste in my mouth.  I'm not sure I'll ever trust their website again.  I have a little piece of advice for the Disney Store:

You need to get your act together.  If you're having as many problems with your website as it appears, you need to shut it down long enough to fix those problems.  I expect a website that actually works.  I expect notification if my order doesn't actually go through correctly.  And I expect to receive the merchandise that I buy.  How do I know if any of my orders are being placed?  Do I really need to sit and stare at my email, anxiously waiting to see if my order "really" went through or not?  Lame.

I also expect better from Disney.  I expect top of the line customer service, not girls on the phone who aren't even listening to what I'm saying.  I don't expect to be put on mute.  That's incredibly rude and not what Disney stands for.  I think this is what has upset me the most.  I was not treated the way I should be as a customer.  And, I'm a loyal customer.  Often, I'm waiting for one order to arrive and I'm already placing another one.  We don't have any local stores and I rely on your website to purchase merchandise that I can't get anywhere else. 

Yes, I will continue to purchase items through the Disney Store online.  (I don't really have much of a choice when my closest store is about 2 hours from here.)  But Disney Store, you really disappointed me this time.  °o°