Before moving forward with publishing all my past DMNs to my site, I thought it might be helpful to share the background of why we started with our Disney Movie Nights, and why the dollar store emphasis.
I’ve always loved parties; going to parties, hosting parties but most of all planning parties. My nickname is Planny McPlannerson. Yes, I have a list started on what outfits Jacs will wear in Disney, things to make sure and pack for Disney, emergency diaper bag supplies, etc. and our trip is still 81 days out. So, yes, that is a VERY appropriate nickname.
Labor Day weekend of 2013 Jeff and I wanted to do something low key and family oriented with our weekend. He works so hard for us and works a lot of Saturdays, so when we have an extended weekend together, it’s something we don’t take for granted. We were so excited that it was almost 1 year away from our Disney trip and we were looking at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival menus and reliving our favorite memories. Le Cellier Steakhouse in the Canada portion of the World Showcase in Epcot is one of the top three on our must dine list. The Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup is one of our favorites and you can actually get the soup at the Canada kiosk during the Food and Wine Festival. I have a cookbook from our last visit while we were pregnant which has the recipe in it. What do you do when you are jonesing for Epcot and Disney magic but are still 13 months out? You get your cookbook out and get in the kitchen!
While we were making our soup we decided we would watch a Disney movie afterwards. We decided on Beauty and the Beast and told Jacs we were making “Belle Soup”, and then going to watch a whole movie about Belle. I have no idea why we decided to name a Canadian soup after a movie set in France, but I’m going to make some sort of French-Canadian connection and stick with that. It is Epcot after all and Illuminations illustrates what brings us all together, but I digress…
Jacs did really well for an 18 month-old watching a full length movie. She made it ¾ the way through before falling asleep, in her defense it was past her bedtime. After the movie, Jeff and I were talking about how we should introduce her to more of the classic Disney movies and characters so that she would be familiar with them when we went to Disney World. I said that I would just make sure to plan ahead next time, and make sure the menu was better matched to the movie. That’s when it hit me. We could do a Disney Movie Night where each night had a theme/menu that matched the movie! Genius. Pure Planny McPlannerson GENIUS!
I knew instantly that I needed to do Lady and the Tramp and have spaghetti and meatballs just like at Tony’s. The bad part was, would it be financially possible for me to do something like this once a month. I am a stay at home mom and, at the time, was not bringing anything monetary to the table. (Thankfully now I have my Zeal commissions which are helping to pay for our Disney trip, at that point I wasn’t doing anything to bring consistent money in.) The wonderful man that my hubby is said that if I could do it on a small (read Dollar Tree) budget then he thought that would be great. He knows I love to plan and could see the
fervor excitement on my face. Dollar Store Disney was a go. I don’t think I had been this excited since Jacs’ first birthday party. I was given the opportunity to look forward to and plan an event
“With great power comes great responsibility.” I was not going to let him down. I was a frequenter of our local Dollar Tree and knew there were all sorts of options from stemware to party supplies and everything in between all for $1. I was sure that if I utilized the options available to me, plus items on hand and added in my crafts, that I would be able to create a great atmosphere that would lead to wonderful memories for our family and those going on our trip.
As I write this I have 11 movie nights under my belt and am already pinning away for Mulan next month. It’s just so much fun to watch Jacs’ face as I tell her this is the week for our “____ Party”. We use the term DMN but when you’re 2 and you see decorations, it’s a party. Although I pay for any supplies I buy for the tablescapes and theme, we all split the cost of the food and beverages. When we asked our in-laws, who are going with us, if they would want to participate, we all discussed that it made sense to split the food and beverage cost, so it would be feasible to keep up on a monthly basis. My mother had planned on going with us as well but with being a school teacher the October timing didn’t work out. I am happy to say that our dear friend Ivy is now joining us so you will see her at the DMNs too. Our friend Courtnei also attends our DMNs and although she is not going to Disney with us on this trip, she is Jacs’ Fairy Godmother, so we could fudge a little on that. I have no doubt that at some point Courtnei and her “peapod” Jacs will visit Disney together.
I hope that’s given you readers a glimpse inside my crazy mind and some background as you read my blog. My desire with this blog is to help you create memories with your family, and know that you can bring Disney magic to your family for just dollars per day, or at least per Disney Movie Night.
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