Monday, January 9, 2012

Eating My Way Through Disneyland - Happy Birthday to Me!

Yesterday was my birthday and my daughter and I
who are known in our family as the 
"Disneyland Psychos"
spent the last half of last week at Disneyland for our
birthdays.  We are called that because we speed walk
from ride to ride and go as early as we can to as 
late as we can.  (We do take time to go back to 
the hotel and nap during the late afternoon though.)

For about 5 years now we kept saying we wanted to
go to Disneyland and see the Christmas decorations
but we haven't been able to make it.  Her friend told 
her that they keep the decorations up the week after
New Years, so this year on a whim we made reservations
and went. This was an adults only trip and really fun.

Of course it made it even better that it was 82 degrees
while it was snowing at home!

The decorations are just wonderful there at this time of year.

This was the perfect birthday celebration for me!

Some people complain about park food, but Disney has
done a wonderful job of improving the quality of their
food and it is a big part of the experience for us

We have our list of the foods we must eat.  (I have to
tell you before you see all of the food that we shared
everything as portions are really big!)

One of the big ones is the Dole Pineapple Float
right by the Tiki Room.  You may have seen it 
on Pinterest.  I believe in the power of Pinterest
because I have never seen such lines for this light
and delicious pineapple frozen treat in pineapple juice.
I counted 75 people in line one night.

We also "HAVE" to have the beignets in
Downtown Disney at the Jazz Kitchen - amazingly
soft freshly made donuts tossed in powdered
sugar in a bag.  I gave you instructions
on how to make some exactly like theirs here.

This year we found Mickey beignets at
the park in New Orleans Square, but they 
were a disappointment, dry and thin.  Maybe 
it was an off day for them.

My daughter gave me my birthday present
early by treating me to lunch at The Blue Bayou
where I had to indulge 

in the Monte Cristo Sandwich.
The lighting in there is dark and wonderful with
the river from Pirates of the Caribbean flowing
by and fireflies in the trees so the pictures
are pretty dark. This is definitely the priciest
restaurant on the property but a fun special 
occasion place.

We also have to eat the beef and chicken
skewers at Bengal BBQ and Grill. 

bacon wrapped asparagus is fabulous too.

We had the chili in a sourdough bread bowl
over in California Adventure at the Pacific Warf. 
 You can watch
them make the sourdough bread fresh and then
sup on a delicious bread bowl with soup or salad.
You can't get fresher, softer bread.

Jolly Holiday 
at the end of Main Street (from Mary Poppins)
just opened this last week with fresh pastries to grab as
you enter the park.  I got a croissant to dip in their
creamy delicious hot chocolate.

We stayed at the recently remodeled 
Disneyland Hotel.  

The fiber optic lit carving above the bed was just
magical and the bedding was so beautiful.  The
light below softly played "A Dream Is A Wish
Your Heart Makes" and the pillows on the bed
repeated that with one saying, "A Dream Is A Wish
Your Heart Makes" and the other saying, "When
You're Fast Asleep".  

The room was just
magical with Mickey appearing in the beautiful
carpet too.

The crowds were still crazy the week after
New Years but we got to go in the park early
two of the mornings and then we were able to
ride a ton of rides and get a lot of fast passes
that we could use later in the evening as it got

Did you know that there are apps for your smart phones
that give you very accurate wait times so that you
can decide if you want to walk to that ride?  My DIL
told me about it and it was amazing to be able to see
that this ride had 10 minutes wait time and another
had 45 minutes wait time, so I could make a choice
without walking all across the park to see.  Check
out the app Mouse Wait.  It had both parks - it
was wonderful.

It was definitely a treat to see them light the
Sleeping Beauty's Castle
at night and enjoy the holiday
fireworks which they had ever night.

This year we went to the World of Color for
the first time.  My daughter had read online that you
could buy a picnic lunch for $15 and then you 
would receive priority standing room.  
The lunch was terrible - really the only yucky
food I had at Disneyland - just give me a ham 
sandwich as one of the options for a picnic
lunch - but it was worth it to be on the
front row right down by the water.  It was
a spectacular show.

This beautiful Belle Caramel Apple was 
something I hadn't seen before
 and of course we had to get a Minnie.
I carefully hand carried these home to share
on Sunday for my birthday dinner.

I didn't get a chance to go to Disneyland until
I was an adult in college and it has been 
a love affair ever since.  I am awed by the details
and the magic that goes into everything.  Just look
at those magical caramel apples.

To all who come to this happy place
Disneyland is your land.
Here age relives fond memories
of the past and here youth may savor
the challenge and promise of the future.
Disneyland is dedicated
to the ideals, the dreams, and the hard
facts that have created America... with the
hope that it will be a source of joy 
and inspiration to all the world.
July 17, 1955

I hope you enjoyed celebrating my birthday
with me.  I believe in celebrating my birthday,
birthweek and birthmonth.  I am glad for
each birthday, I think each one is a gift and
I hope you do too.


Chocolat - French for Chocolate. I adored chocolate from a young age when I had to sneak in the cupboard to find where my mother had hidden the Nestle's Chocolate Chips. Having read about the famous chocolat shoppes in Paris, when I finally got there I was determined to try a chocolate from every Paris shoppe. I invite you to share my adventures in creating, in travel, and in life.


  1. What a lovely post from Disneyland.....i loooove it...i was 5 times in Paris...never been in America...who know's......dream from

  2. Count me in the "Disney Psycho" club. We love Disneyland and Disneyworld. And I'm not ashamed to admit being a grown woman walking around with sequined Minnie Mouse ears and a miniature Tinker Belle hat ( although not worn at the same time).

    My fantasy is to be there at Christmas! I love the Blue Bayou and the Cafe New Orleans. Oh and the Main Street bakery. Oh and the ice cream shop. Oh and.....

    What a fun trip!!

  3. Being a California girl I LOVE Disneyland and prefer it over DW. All of the memories come back each time I visit! My extended family have year round passes so when we visit from the Midwest we always go no matter what time of year. Great Post and ~Happy Birthday~!!!
    XO Cindy ps. all of the food looks super yummy!

  4. Ohhh I just love Disneyland!! You are making me want to go again right now and we were just there a couple months ago! One of our favorite places to visit!! Happy Birthday!! :)

  5. I was raised near Disneyland and we had passes so we could go whenever we wanted to. Those were the days! We like to dance with the bands now when we head to the beach. It is a magical place and I'm so glad you got to spend your birthday week there. Happy Birthday!

  6. First: HAPPY BIRTHDAY TOO YOU! Second: Disneyland..what a wonderful way for you and your daughter to celebrate together...looks like you had an over the top time...the food, omg the food. Keep on celebrating..days, weeks, month, I so agree on that time schedule. lol Please when you have time stop over and visit with me...I'd love to see you. xoso Sandy

  7. Wow what a magical Birthday celebration. Have a magical year and thank you for taking us in blog land along on the fun visual tour. I want to reach into my computer screen and take a bite of one of those amazing apples that are works of art. Love York blog!

  8. HAPPY bIRTHDAY! What a great way to spend your B'day and Christmas with your daughter in Disney Land. We did this a couple of years in Disney World in Orlando and I remember it more than any other trip! You look like you had a blast! The food looks great, I'm hungry right now! Hope you visit me, I have a giveaway for my 1 year of blogging! Happy 2012.

  9. Well happy birthday to you! So glad you had great weather! We live in SoCal so we've been enjoying it too! Just FYI, the castle at DL is Sleeping Beauty castle and the one at DW is Cinderella castle! We eat our way through the parks too!!!

  10. This is a beautiful post, and Disneyland is one of my fondest vacation memories (I have been there 3X, but it has been too long. Think I need to plan something soon.) You really enjoyed some delectable food there. Happy birthday to you! All the best for a bright New Year ahead. xo

  11. Oh my it's a grand celebration. Like seeing the colorful stuff. ^_^

  12. Wow, I really hope you didn't eat all of that the same day.

  13. That last one was from me, Shaunna, your favorite niece. I just had to change my display name.

  14. happy Birthday What a treat.. My girls would love that:)

  15. Well that was fun, since I have a Disney post up today too! We have spent the past 5 years at Walt Disney World for Christmas and you are right the decorations are so amazing. Everyone should see them at least once on one coast or the other! My daughter (who works at Disney) loves Dole Whips! The caramel apples in Orlando were snowmen and Mickey-and while we can get fabulous pastries, no beignets! Happy Birthday...looks like such fun!

  16. I was guessing that you were going to have something great for this post!!!! What a fabulous way for you and your daughter to celebrate your birthdays. Happy Birthday to you both!!! I looooooove to visit Disney because it always makes me feel like a little girl again. I love the decorations, food, music, rides and everything about the place!!! I was 22 on my first trip to Disney.

    Happy New Year,
    Katherine S.

  17. I have only ever been to Disney World, so I enjoyed your pictures of DisneyLand. Happy Birthday to you. It looks like you had a wonderful time!

  18. Sounds like you celebrated your birthday in a wonderful way! The food alone would be worth the trip, looks yummy! ;D

  19. In all my years, I've never been to Disneyland. I think I need to add it to my list! It looks like a magical time for birthday girls. Your images make the "park food" look tempting, and that little pillow is dear. Happy Birthday, Jacqueline. ~ Sarah

  20. Oh How wonderful!!! It is on my bucket list to get to Disney and see the Christmas deecorations, hopefully NEXT YEAR!!!! Thanks so much for shring the pics. Sounds like you had a GREAT time. XO, Pinky

  21. What a fun trip! Thanks for taking us along. I loved seeing the fancy caramel apples and Cinderella's Castle after dark. Happy Birthday,
    Hugs, Beth

  22. Oh Happy, Happy, Happy, HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Jacqueline! What a spectacular way to celebrate!! Loved seeing every minute of it.
    (mine is next week & I can tell already it isn't going to be anywhere near that much FUN!)

    Thanks for the link to the Cafe Du Monde B's...I think I NEED to make some for ME!


  23. I have never been to Disney Land, but I've been to Disney World a 100 times. I love it there. I'm so jealous from reading this post. Disney is my favorite place too.

  24. Happy Birthday Month Jacqueline!! We too are Disney fanatics and try to hit Disney World (Florida) every year. We were lucky to see their Christmas decorations once and I will never forget them! We stayed at that California Disneyland Hotel about 10 years ago and it was in need of refurb then, so I would love to see it now. Your food tour was delightful--I love the Minnie apple! And the Dole line in Florida is always really long too, but that concoction is delicious. Thanks for the tour. Now I want to go again! Linda

  25. What a fun way to celebrate your birthday!! Woo-hoo!! Hope you have a wonderful day & birth month. I enjoyed seeing all the fabulous food that you enjoyed.

  26. Awesome celebration. You rocks, as always.

    I was at Disneyland when it celebrated it's 50th anniversary and it was the best time I ever had in the Big Apple.


    Greetings from chilly Stockholm

  27. Looks like Disneyland was the perfect place for you to celebrate your birthday:). Growing up 15 minutes from there I have gone many times in my lifetime. Can" t wait to take the grandkids again when they are older. When I was ten, my family won a trip to D-land for the weekend (Disneyland Hotel)and we were given VIP treatment. Thanks for the info about the app.! Happy Birthday!!!

  28. Happy Birthday!
    I have not been to Disney in YEARS!
    It looks like you had a great time, and everything looks so yummy!
    Happy Birthday (twice) ;)

  29. Love your post! Everything looks great! Wish I was there!!!

  30. Thank You for this post and all the yummy info on food places! We visited Disneyland this past Monday for my January birthday and I wrote down some of your suggestions, starting with the beignets for my birthday breakfast...YUM!!!! My husband and I had dinner at the Blue Bayou just prior to him asking me to marry him on the castle drawbridge underneath the Christmas lights 12 years ago. I don't know if it was the magic of Disney or my love for him, that made me say, "YES!", but it is truly the happiest place on earth to visit


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