One of our Fave Tips!

Disneyland Newstand & Package Check In

Disneyland Newstand & Package Check In

We absolutely LOVE Disneyland and all that it has to offer but do you know what we might love even more? We are crazy for any tips, tricks, and hacks to make Disneyland even more travel friendly!

The first thing that we always suggest is to purchase your Disney gear AHEAD of time. It will save you time, lots of money, and not to be dramatic but some of your sanity. But we aren't crazy. We KNOW that you are going to see something that you can only purchase in the parks and want to buy it. Disney knows what they are doing and even the strongest of us eventually cave. When this happens, turn to one of our all time favorite tips. 

Ok, brace yourselves... When you buy something in the park, you don't have to lug it around all day. Yes, you read that right. We have a solution for you whether you are staying ON SITE or OFF SITE. 

OFFSITE HOTEL OPTION: If you are staying in an offsite hotel, bring your Disneyland purchased merchandise and your receipt to the News Stand at the front gates of the park (to your left as you walk through the entrance) and the kindly cast members will happily hold it for you for FREE, all day long. So. Good. 

View of the Package Check In if you are coming from inside Disneyland.

View of the Package Check In if you are coming from inside Disneyland.

ONSITE HOTEL: If you are staying in an onsite hotel you can still use the Package Check In option but DON'T! When you make a purchase, tell the cashier where you are staying and they will have your packages sent directly to your hotel for you! This option is 100% FREE, too! Magical news, right?! 

Whatever you do... DO NOT lug your bags around the park, risking potential theft or a sore back from a crazy heavy backpack. We promise you'll thank us!

 

The Perfect Disney Princess Dress Fix

Harper's ready for a day full of fun in her Elsa princess nightgown.

Harper's ready for a day full of fun in her Elsa princess nightgown.

We are alllll about making our lives simpler. The older and busier we get, the more we rely on things that make our lives EASIER. This hack was passed on by a good friend of ours and we've been big fans ever since! Hoping this tip helps YOU too!

We each have two older sons and a youngest daughter. While our older four were younger, we perfected Disneyland/California Adventure with boys but the parks with our girls was a whole new, fun thing and it's been an adventure to explore all of the incredible things that Disney has to offer for girls. The most obvious girl thing in the parks are all of THE PRINCESS DRESSES.

As you walk through the parks, you see adorable little girls dressed up as their most beloved characters and it is just the sweetest. What we quickly discovered (around noon) is that those gorgeous, polyester and tulle princess dresses become perfectly puffy prisons that make our little ladies HOT, ITCHY and oh so IRRITABLE. This can seriously ruin a day and in our opinion, it's just not worth it. 

One of our friend's daughters (and her sweet older sis) staying cool and oh so happy on a hot day in the parks. It doesn't get much better than seeing your tips in use! 

One of our friend's daughters (and her sweet older sis) staying cool and oh so happy on a hot day in the parks. It doesn't get much better than seeing your tips in use! 

But never fear! We have a fix for you and links to make your shopping even simpler! Let your daughters wear their pajama princess dresses for the day! They dry fast, are super breathable, and your cutie will still be referred to as "princess" by every cast member in the park. (Did you know that they do that if your daughter is dressed as a princess? THEY DO and it's AMAZING!)

Here are some links on princess nightgowns... cause we all need things to be a little easier. (Prices may vary once you adjust sizes.) Pajamas are one of our favorite items to give our girls for Christmas! 

Meet Modern Mouse Design

Marisa (on the left) and Sweina (on the right).

 

Gosh! What a whirlwind! Last week we launched our STORE full of Disney-inspired clothing and accessories and today we officially launch our very own BLOG! Welcome to our Modern Mouse Design blog and meet the two of us, Marisa and Sweina (pronounced sway-nah)! We thought that we'd start by sharing a little bit about who we are and why we are just crazy about Disneyland. 

MARISA:  Hi there! A little backstory... I spent my childhood Mousercising before preschool, rockin my Minnie Mouse dress with cowboy boots on, and snuggling up under our end table to watch Disney Sunday Night Movies. My happiest childhood memories were at Disneyland on family vacations. I've always loved the magic of Disneyland and the idea that there was a safe place to be my truest self.  Now, as a wife and mom of 3, I have the pleasure of experiencing the magic of Disney all over again through the eyes of my amazing kids. Every trip that we take from our home in Seattle down to Disneyland, I’m able to learn more and more tips and tricks to pass on to you about how to make your Disneyland adventures less stressful, less expensive but LOTS more fun!  

SWEINA: Hey all! Growing up in Southern California, my parents would wake us up for a surprise day trip to Disneyland every once in a while. My love for art, Kids Incorporated, movies and wonder seemed to convene in one really magical place. I've been hooked ever since. Now I'm a Seattle-based wife and mom of three artsy dreamers. Disneyland is now a multiple day experience which has given our family the knowledge to tackle the parks in a stress free, FUN, and dare I say, relaxing way! Most people think about doing Disneyland, but ruin it by the pressure to DO everything once they are there. My hope is to help people chill out around the Disneyland experience and design your best trip! 

Well, there you have it! Now you KNOW we are huge, Disney-loving dorks and that we aren't even ashamed to admit it. Ha! Thanks for following along on this journey!

(OH! Keep an eye on your email on Saturday... It's Mickey's birthday and we are doing something super special to celebrate!)

See you real soon!

Marisa and Sweina

How to Beat the Heat in California Adventure!

Carthay Circle Theater - California Adventure

Carthay Circle Theater - California Adventure

It's heating up in Seattle this week and it makes us dream of cooling off in one of our favorite places in California Adventure Park, Carthay Circle Theater. 

So here's your Magic Maker Tip for today... You've GOT to visit Carthay Circle and either grab a bit and drink in the old Hollywood themed lounge or make a reservation and eat in their delicious steakhouse, upstairs. 

Bonus: Their lounge is kid-friendly, the a/c is pumping, and they make a delish Shirley Temple. 

Yes, You Really Should Take Your Baby to Disneyland!

Marisa's family, back in the day... Liam (9), Harper (1), Jesse, and Finn (6) on Harper's first trip to Disneyland.

Marisa's family, back in the day... Liam (9), Harper (1), Jesse, and Finn (6) on Harper's first trip to Disneyland.

Guys... This is a big one. One of our most frequently asked questions has to be whether we would suggest taking babies to Disneyland. Without hesitation, our answer is always, "Oh my gosh, YES!" We've taken all of our babies to Disneyland and while they don't remember those trips, WE DO and those memories are some of our sweetest! We should also mention that kids under the age of 3 get into the parks for FREE. Seriously!

We have tons of Magic Making Tips for traveling with your baby and thought that we'd share a few of our top tips, to get you started. 

Marisa's son Finn, napping in his stroller.

Marisa's son Finn, napping in his stroller.

1) BRING A STROLLER: It is 100% worth it to bring your own stroller. It makes the airport more manageable (you can gate check the stroller) and you can use it for extra storage throughout the trip. While you can easily rent a stroller in front of Disneyland before entering the park, we prefer our cupholders, deeper baskets for storage and ease of steering. If you have a double stroller, even better! (Make sure to bring a baby carrier too, if you have one that still fits.)

2) ADJUST EXPECTATIONS: Take things slow. Accept that your baby may throw up all over you or have the kind of diarrhea that shuts down the hotel pool. (We "may" know that one from experience.) Your baby WILL have a temper tantrum in the middle of the park. Just accept it and expect it and know that it will be ok. It's a rite of passage! All the cool babies do it! 

Marisa's daughter Harper having an epic meltdown... again.

Marisa's daughter Harper having an epic meltdown... again.

Harper, right before she shut down the hotel pool... at least she looked super cute doing it, right?!?

Harper, right before she shut down the hotel pool... at least she looked super cute doing it, right?!?

3) ARRIVE EARLY AND HAVE A PLAN: The parks are the most empty right when they open and it is worth it to arrive early and get in line at the main gates. Before you arrive, talk through what rides you'd most like to get on and then grab a Fast Pass (or schedule it using the Max Pass on the Disneyland App). Grab a coffee from one of the two Starbucks in Downtown Disney or from the Main Street Starbucks of either park and get moving.  

4) RIDER SWITCH PASS: Disneyland wants to make sure that BOTH parents have a chance to get on a ride, even if their baby cannot, so they created the Rider Switch Pass and made things OH SO MAGICAL! As the first parent enters the beginning of the ride's line, ask a Cast Member for the Rider Switch Pass. After the first parent goes on the ride, send the other parent back to the Fast Pass line with the Rider Switch Pass and they will get to go too! So. Good. 

5) BABY CARE CENTERS: Did you know that Disney has a Baby Care Center in each park? They do! Disneyland's is located at the end of Main Street, next to the First Aid Station and California Adventure's is next to the Ghiradelli Soda Fountain & Chocolate Shop. Stop by for a private place to nurse, access to a high chair and changing tables, and emergency diapers, wipes, baby food, and pacifiers (for purchase). 

6) BRING A CHANGE OF CLOTHING: Minimize drama by bringing a change (or two) of clothing for your baby and pack an extra shirt for you. Our babies were notorious for needing a midday change and having it with you makes life simple and much cheaper. 

7) KEEP YOUR DIAPER BAG WELL-STOCKED: Make sure to pack the essentials... lots of diapers, wipes, bibs, an extra pacifier, burp rags, sunscreen, hand sanitizer, bottles, formula, and baby food/snacks. Clean out your diaper bag when you get back to your room in the evening and have it repacked and ready to go each night. Then you can grab it and be ready to go in the morning!

Seriously. Don't be afraid to DO life with your baby. Yes, there will be challenges. Yes, your baby will definitely have a blow out while you are traveling... for sure. But more importantly, you will make some of the sweetest memories your littles. As we watch all of our kids get older (we are the mother's to teenagers now - gasp!), we promise you that you will be so glad that you did it. 

Good luck and have fun!

Marisa & Sweina