Monday, April 21, 2014

9 Disney Apps You Should Have: Exploring the Magic of Mobile #DisneyApps


While we were checking in for Disney Social Media Moms upon arrival at the Disneyland Hotel, there were booths set up along the conference floor. We were interested in seeing all of them, but our kids made a beeline for one in particular - the Disney Interactive booth! There were iPads fully loaded with some of our favorite apps, and with new ones that we don't have yet. It sure came in handy while we spent a few hours walking from booth to booth hearing from some of the conference sponsors. The kids stayed busy, happy and mesmerized by the awesome Disney mobile games. They chilled out with Frozen Apps and embraced their inner artist with the Doc Mcstuffins App. We already have some of these Disney Apps on our iPhones and iPads, but have since downloaded even more and our kids couldn't be happier. Especially with Spring Break, they have been enjoying even more screen time then usual.


Here's a list including nine Disney Apps that you, (and you kids) will want to have!
Which are your favorite?

Disneynature Explore - Free
Now available for free on the Apple App Store, the app features five animal adventures— brown bear, monarch butterfly, chimpanzee, African lion and loggerhead sea turtle—each with four unique challenges.
Download DISNEYNATURE EXPLORE APP.


Doc McStuffins: Paint and Play - $4.99
Let your imagination and creativity take over as you paint everything in Doc McStuffins's check-up room—even Doc and Lambie—and then watch it all come to life in 3D! And when Lambie and Marvin get boo-boos, you can help Doc fix them so they're ready to play again.


Frozen: Storybook Deluxe - $6.99
• Experience two sides of the new Frozen film story with Anna and Elsa –
two sisters with very different points of view!
• Interactive play: create your own “ice craft” snow globes, and re-create
Frozen scenes with frosty drawing tools.
• Flip your device to read, hear, and see the different perspectives from Anna and Elsa.
•Laugh out loud as your enjoy tappable animation, film quotes, and a few surprises.
Download FROZEN STORYBOOK DELUXE.


Disney Movies Anywhere
Stream your Disney, Pixar and Marvel digital movie collection at home or on-the-go, browse and buy from an extensive catalogue of titles, access exclusive content, get exciting rewards and MORE! Signup and connect your iTunes account today to get Disney*Pixar’s The Incredibles for free!
Download DISNEY MOVIES ANYWHERE APP.


Disney Animated - $9.99
Discover how Walt Disney Animation Studio films are brought to life. Dozens of top animators, artists, technicians, and designers contributed to making Disney Animated an unprecedented hands-on experience. Disney Animated, presented in English, captures the original storytelling of all Disney animated feature films, allowing you to browse never before seen concept art, visual effects and more. This App is only currently available for use on iPads.
Download DISNEY ANIMATED APP.


Disney Memories HD - Free
Create and share your own Disney Memories- an official app from Disney!
•Use this FREE app to decorate your photos with Disney magic
•Pose with some of your favorite Disney characters
•Add a Disney Parks themed filter, frame, or sticker 
•Easily share your photos with friends and family via email, Facebook, or Twitter
•Set themed alarm clocks and see your favorite Disney Pals come to life with audio and video greetings!
Download DISNEY MEMORIES APP.


Disneyland Explorer - Free
Take a spin around The Happiest App on Earth—An Official App from Disney!
• Discover the Magic as you swipe your way through Disneyland® Resort in California
• Explore over 130 attractions, characters, and entertainment
• Enjoy 16 classic attractions like never before with exciting activities
• Share exclusive digital postcards and your very own character drawings
• All this and more, still FREE!
Download DISNEYLAND EXPLORER APP.


Frozen: Free Fall - Free
Get ready for an epic puzzle matching adventure in the Kingdom of Arendelle, inspired by the newest Disney animated film, Frozen! Join Anna, Elsa, and more of your favorite characters on a journey to slide and match 195 icy puzzles for free!
Download FROZEN FREE FALL APP.


Disney Club Penguin
EXPLORE the island with friends in the Town, Puffle Park, Lighthouse, University & more
ADOPT up to 40 pet puffles including the dog and cat!* PLAY games to earn virtual coins PERSONALIZE a penguin with the latest clothes & items* CUSTOMIZE a unique igloo with furniture items* CHAT*around the island with friends on the Club Penguin app* LIKE friends’ igloos to let ‘em know they’re cool SHOP for styles, igloos & furniture in the Club Penguin app catalog* SPEND virtual coins to get new items & outfits* SYNC items & coins to use between the app & a clubpenguin.com account* WATCH the newest videos & get sneak peeks on the What’s New Blog.
Download CLUB PENGUIN APP.


(Images © Disney Interactive. / Photo courtesy of Josh Hallett of @hyku.)


Full Disclosure: We were invited to the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. The Disneyland Resort offered a discounted rate for all attendees and their families. This is a once in a lifetime experience and we are grateful to Disney for allowing us to participate. We'll be sharing unique things seen and heard throughout the Celebration. Please keep in mind these our own personal thoughts and opinions, not those of the Walt Disney Company.

Friday, April 18, 2014

"Give A Book, Get A Book" - Disney Junior Unveils New Program #DisneySMMoms

"There are few things more powerful than stories to connect children to the world and help them imagine what they can become." 
~ Kyle Zimmer
(President and CEO of First Book)


On Saturday we attended a private Disney Junior event.
We knew that it was going to be exciting, but we didn't know who was going to show up or what they were going to say.

Do you want the good news or the bad news first?


The Good News
We heard lots of exciting news at the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration last weekend, but one of the things that made our mama hearts feel good was that, one million books will be donated to U.S. children in need with a new program starting on April 21st. Give a Book, Get a Book a nationwide campaign that Disney Junior and First Book launched to help put brand new books into the hands of children who so desperately need them!


The Bad News
We found out some pretty alarming news such as, in some low income communities, there are as few as one book for every three hundred children? Whaaat? Reading and books are something that my family takes for granted, I mean our mom works at a book store for goodness sakes. But even just having material to read is a luxury for so many children. Let's do something about this!


Genevieve Goings, Singer and Actress
Much to our surprise while at breakfast, Genevieve Goings walked up on stage. You may not know her by name, buy you most likely know her by face. Your children know her as the cutest conductor at Choo Choo Soul on Disney Junior. She's a singing, dancing, teaching dynamo (triple threat much) who adds a little flavor to our mornings. She's the spokesperson for Give A Book, Get A Book so look for her on the commercials telling about it! All aboard, All aboard!


Nancy Kanter, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Disney Junior Worldwide
She was eager to share the news with us, "With each and every one of our Disney Junior series, we let a child experience the magic and learning that comes with a story well told, and deepen the emotional connection and sense of wonder and adventure that have defined storytelling at the Disney company for generations." She continued, "The Give a Book, Get a Book program is a way for families to share stories and enter the world of giving in a simple yet effective way."


LeVar Burton, Actor, Advocate, & Reading Rainbow Legend
Coinciding with the program announcement, lifelong children's literacy advocate LeVar Burton, spoke about the importance of building literacy and of storytelling in the digital age. As soon as they played the theme song to Reading rainbow and LeVar came out, he may as well been George Clooney. The moms screamed with excitement! After all, LeVar read the stories of our childhood and his voice took us all back. He is a true literary icon and we all appreciated him being a part of the conference! One of our favorite quotes from him was when he said, "We have been sharing stories with each other since before the time of fire." Now THAT is a true testament to the power of storytelling!


Most of the younger generation (our kids) aren't very familiar with LeVar, so they also brought out some other very special guests. David Arquette, Tim Gunn, and Ariel Winter graced the stage, each holding a book in their hands. All three of these well known Disney Junior voice actors, participated in a storybook reading just for attendees and their families. 

David Arquette, Actor and Voice of Skully, Jake and the Never Land Pirates

Tim Gunn, Voice of Baileywick, Sofia the First

Ariel Winter, Actress and Voice of Sofia, Sofia the First


Here's how it works
Families can now take advantage of an all-new website, GiveaBookGetaBook.com, featuring tools and resources for parents and caregivers that promote the value of storytelling and offer interactive activities. Beginning April 21 in Disney Store locations and later this summer at other nationwide retailers, there are two ways to Give a Book, Get a Book. For a limited time, with the purchase of any specially-marked Disney Junior book or product, receipts or packaging will include a redemption code allowing kids and families to direct the donation of a book to First Book in the region of their choice and to access a free Disney Digital Book to share as a family. Additionally, Give a Book, Get a Book bookmarks with redemption codes will be distributed to visitors at participating public libraries and Radio Disney events throughout the summer. With the help of families across the United States, Disney and First Book will donate up to one million books through this program.

Also starting April 21, Disney Store locations will provide an enhanced interactive "Storytime Powered by Give a Book, Get a Book" featuring two new stories from Disney Junior favorites, "Sofia the First" and "Jake and the Never Land Pirates." In addition to the in-store readings, Disney Store locations will host special story time events at Boys & Girls Clubs of America in multiple markets across the U.S. Children at these events will be given a free book along with a redemption code bookmark.


It was a day of true wonder and surprises! But isn't that what reading is all about? Reading is cool, and it brings people together. Just remember that at the start of every adventure (on paper or on the road ahead) the story begins with you.

Amazing images courtesy of Josh Hallett@hyku and used with permission. Thanks Josh!

Full Disclosure: We were invited to the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. The Disneyland Resort offered a discounted rate for all attendees and their families. This is a once in a lifetime experience and we are grateful to Disney for allowing us to participate. We'll be sharing unique things seen and heard throughout the Celebration. Please keep in mind these our own personal thoughts and opinions, not those of the Walt Disney Company.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Disneynature BEARS Movie - Why You Should Take Your Family To See It #MeetTheCubs


We had a really special experience at this year's Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. On Saturday morning we were treated (along with our families) to a private screening of Disneynature's Bears. It opened with a personal message to the Social Media Moms from Olivia Holt, who sings the movie's theme song, Carry On. This song is beautiful with a positive message, we haven't been able to get it out of our heads. We encourage you to 'Learn the Lyrics.' It will definitely make your heart sing.


The same people who made Chimpanzee, African Cats, Wings of Life, Oceans, and The Crimson Wing are at it again. This Friday, be inspired by Bears the newest film from Disneynature. Take your family to meet this furry family. You will instantly fall in love with Sky and her two cubs, Amber and Scout - we sure did! It follows them from the time they are born throughout the first year of their life. Inspired by a true life adventure and narrated by John C. Reilly aka Mr. Wreck It Ralph.


This is the story of what it takes to be a parent, a mother, a protector in the great outdoors. The struggle is real when you are a single mom - especially in the Alaskan Wilderness. We just kept thinking - and we think mothering as humans is hard! These bears lives seem like one struggle after the next. To quote Olivia Holt's song, "We will travel this life well-worn, no matter the cost, no matter how long. We will leave our footprints behind, and carry on..." This movie is incredibly touching and funny, and was really enjoyable for all of us. Everyone from the 6 year old, to our teenagers, to our husbands really liked the film. Without saying any spoilers, let's just say that it is appropriate for all ages. Bears is rated G.


Help Save Our National Parks & Wildlife
If you see Bears opening week (April 18-April 24, 2014) and Disneynature will make a donation to the National Park Foundation through the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund to protect wildlife and wild places.


Disneynature Explore App
Download the free app, Disneynature Explore. See how you can win the nature vs screen time debate with this new App from Disneynature.


Disneynature Monkey Kingdom
Before the movie started, we saw a preview for a Disneynature movie that will be coming out next year called, Monkey Kingdom. This film will be swinging into theaters on Earth Day 2015, so make sure you keep an eye out for it.


Disneynature Bears Sweepstakes
Adventures By Disney is giving your family the chance to take your own incredible journey through Wyoming’s great “wide open,” including Yellowstone National Park! Discover more about the 7 Day/6 Night vacation and enter for your chance to win by clicking HERE.


Photo Credit(s): photos in top collage, courtesy of Josh Hallett @hyku.

Full Disclosure: We were invited to the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. The Disneyland Resort offered a discounted rate for all attendees and their families. This is a once in a lifetime experience and we are grateful to Disney for allowing us to participate. We'll be sharing unique things seen and heard throughout the Celebration. Please keep in mind these our own personal thoughts and opinions, not those of the Walt Disney Company. We also saw a special advanced screening of Disneynature's Bears.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Learn the Lyrics: "Carry On" by Olivia Holt for Disneynature BEARS


"Carry On"
by Olivia Holt

(From Disneynature BEARS)

There's always gonna be some canyon in the way.
There's always gonna be a river I cannot cross.
Somewhere along this path that's chosen me
I know I'm gonna fall down, feel lost, feel weak.
But wherever it leads.

No one said this would ever be easy, my love.
But I will be by your side when the impossible rises up. 
We will travel this life well-worn, 
No matter the cost, no matter how long. 
We will leave our footprints behind 
And carry on, carry on, carry on, and carry on. 

Some will write you off before you ever start.
Some will say the journey's just too hard. 
Somewhere between right here and the other side 
There will be fear and doubt in the deep dark night. 
But we will survive, yeah. 

No one said this would ever be easy, my love.
But I will be by your side when the impossible rises up. 
We will travel this life well-worn, 
No matter the cost, no matter how long. 
We will leave our footprint behind 
And carry on, carry on, carry on, carry on. 

We may fall behind,
Lose miles along this road. 
We will be alright, 
I will never let you go. 

No one said this would ever be easy, my love.
But I will be by your side when the impossible rises up. 
We will travel this life well-worn, 
No matter the cost, no matter how long. 
We will leave our footprints behind
And carry on, and carry on...




Image courtesy of OliviaHolt.com
Music Video courtesy of Walt Disney Records

Full Disclosure: We were invited to the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. The Disneyland Resort offered a discounted rate for all attendees and their families. This is a once in a lifetime experience and we are grateful to Disney for allowing us to participate. We'll be sharing unique things seen and heard throughout the Celebration. Please keep in mind these our own personal thoughts and opinions, not those of the Walt Disney Company.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Saving Mr. Banks: Food Styling Tips and Tricks from the Movie

What happens when you put the Disney Sisters in a chef's kitchen? Magic - that's what!
We were recently invited to Hollywood Food Styling, to the kitchen of Chris Oliver to see how she came up with and created the edible foods that were in the movie, Saving Mr. Banks.


We showed up not knowing what exactly to expect. What we came away with was the knowledge that every good chef knows. It just takes a little extra effort to take things from average to exceptional. 
We sat and listened while Chris Oliver shared tips on preparing food, plating food, and setting food up perfectly for party presentation.

To hear more about our delicious day make sure to check out,
How to Entertain like a Professional: 
15 Lessons From the Saving Mr. Banks Food Stylist



















Special thanks to Chris Oliver and her hardworking staff at Hollywood Food Styling for helping to make our visit to their kitchen fun, informative, and delicious!

Disclosure: We were not paid or compensated for this post. We were invited to an event and received a copy of Saving Mr. Banks on Blu-Ray. The opinions shared on this blogs are 100% Magical and 100% those of the Disney Sisters only.

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