Disneyland to Launch New Parade & Firework Display for 60th Anniversary

 

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I cannot believe that Disneyland has been around for 60 years already.  If Walt Disney was alive, I think he would be quite proud of what has become of his company and the leadership of those at the helm.  This is an article that came out today from the LA Times.

The Disneyland resort in Anaheim will celebrate its 60th anniversary this year with a new parade, an upgraded fireworks show and other changes that park officials describe as “amazing.”

Disney officials unveiled details of its Diamond Celebration during a presentation Wednesday night that included a brief explosion of fireworks and a light projection show on Disneyland’s Main Street.

The new celebration is set to start at the park May 22 with no end date scheduled. “It’s really going to be amazing,” said Tom Staggs, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts.

Officials said the celebration will include a new nighttime parade, inspired by the Main Street Electrical Parade, which ended at Disneyland in 1996. The new parade, dubbed “Paint the Night,” is to feature more than 1.5 million LED lights that will be in synch with the music and the lights of the costumed characters in the parade.

The park’s nighttime fireworks show will be upgraded to include light projections that will extend beyond Main Street to splash images on such attractions as the Matterhorn, It’s a Small World and Rivers of America, said Steve Davison, executive of parades and spectaculars.

The “projection mapping technology” will be used to project characters and scenes from popular Disney and Pixar films throughout the park, he said.

In addition, Sleeping Beauty’s Castle in Disneyland and the Carthay Circle Theatre in Disney’s California Adventure park will be overhauled with diamond exteriors to reflect the diamond anniversary, said John Addis, senior show director at Disneyland.

“It’s going to look sparkly,” he said. At Disney’s California Adventure, the “World of Color” light-and-water show will also be remade to use fire, water and lights to tell the history of Walt Disney and his park, officials said.

By |January 29th, 2015|Disney News and Events, life, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Let it Go

il_340x270.693901185_5sdxHappy New Year everyone!  I for one am very excited that 2014 has come to an end.  On a personal and professional level, my year was bittersweet. On one hand it was a really good year, but at the same time it was also a somewhat difficult year as well.  A lot of growth happened during 2014, which came from a tremendous amount of hard work and perseverance that arose from some very challenging situations.  As I begin a new year and think about new year resolutions, I’ve decided for one to not take myself so seriously anymore.  I can be a bit of a pit bull at times and not let things go, so this year I’ve decided  to ease up on things I haven’t been able to ease up on in the past and to happily move on.

Today as I was reading an online article about Idina Menzel’s New Year’s performance in Time’s Square, I could’t help but think that we as people in general need to let things go.

The 43 year-old singer seemingly missed several notes and the Twitterverse exploded with negative comments about her singing skills. One fan compared her performance to a dying whale and others jokingly said that her inadvertent “alter ego,” Adele Dazeem, had taken her place/  The Tony winning actress responded to the criticism via social media by tweeting a photo showing how she defines success.”There are about 3 million notes in a two-and-a-half-hour musical; being a perfectionist, it took me a long time to realize that if I’m hitting 75 percent of them, I’m succeeding,” she said. “Performing isn’t only about the acrobatics and the high notes: It’s staying in the moment, connecting with the audience in an authentic way, and making yourself real to them through the music.  She continued, “I am more than the notes I hit, and that’s how I try to approach my life.” She concluded by saying, “You can’t get it all right all the time, but you can try your best. If you’ve done that, all that’s left is to accept your shortcomings and have the courage to try to overcome them.”

With our advances in technology and social media, we have become this highly aggressive, entitled, critical, mean-spirited and negative nation of people yelling “give me what I want, give me what I want”  and then posting negative comments to sites such as Yelp, Twitter, Facebook, etc when they don’t get it.  I have to say that this makes me extremely sad because people are losing their sense of perspective and sense of empathy.  I also say, “way to go Idina!”   I think your response is perfect.  As people, none of us are without fault!!!!   If so, please stand up because the world would like to meet you.  All of us will and have fallen short at one time or another.  All we can do is try our best by consistently giving our all!

 

 

By |January 2nd, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Holiday Planning Time-line

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With Halloween over, this now means I have to kicked into gear to get organized for the Winter holidays.  As a working mother, my time is extremely limited.   However, I really love the holidays and making them as memorable as I can for my family, so that means being organized.  As we all know, the holiday season is stressful enough.  For me though, as my kids get older I am fighting very hard to keep those family memories and experiences alive.   Halloween decorations were taken down yesterday and everything will be drying out over the next few days before they are packed away for next year’s use  (see previous post about Holiday Organizing Tips).  My Halloween Wreath is now being replaced with an Autumn berry one from Smith & Hawkins and my Christmas cards were ordered yesterday!!!  I learned a long time ago that by doing a few holiday tasks each week will prevent burn out that we feel this time of year.  One of the first things on my list is the holiday card.

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Holiday Cards:  I may be a bit longer in the tooth, but I love sending out and receiving holiday photos.  For me, it’s my way of staying in touch with friends and family. Now I totally understand with Facebook and social media, that people tend to post things online, but receiving a card in the mail is truly special and that is why I continue to do it.  Years ago though, I found the idea of taking and selecting the annual photo to be very stressful because I am perfectionist and it wasn’t always easy for me to get my kids to cooperate, so I opted to hire a photographer to take their photo–and what do you know, they were total angels during the photo session.  Now a days I simply choose one from a family summer vacation and have them printed up and whoala, they are ready to mailed by the beginning of December and I have no stress!!!!  Places like Shutterfly are a great resource for printable cards.  The key though is early ordering, so start thinking about what photo you will be using.  You can also order address labels at the same time and you’ll be all set to go!

By |November 2nd, 2014|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Holiday Planning Time-line

The Cinderella Company; The Best Princess Party Company

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When people ask me what separates The Cinderella Company apart from other character companies, my answer is always the same, “Jennifer and I along with our entire cast all love what we do and it is that devotion combined with our high quality and attention to detail that separates us from the rest.”   We are a boutique style company whose focus will always be quality versus quantity.  All you need to do is to read through all of our Yelp reviews (88 filtered and 66 non filtered) to understand that.  This company was created many years ago out of our love for making people happy, and it is our heart and soul that is our driving force behind all that we do.

 

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The Cinderella Company is devoted exclusively to entertainment of the highest quality, created to capture your child’s imagination and delight your friends and family in the process.  It is the quality of our costumes, wigs and props, to our theme related activities, attention to detail and of course our very talented cast that is what sets us apart from the other companies.  It is our daily goal to create lasting memories for you and your child.  With all of these things combined, Bay Area Parent Magazine has awarded us with numerous gold, silver and bronze medals for the last 5 years, as we have won as Best Party Entertainer and Children’s Entertainment Company in the SF/Marin/San Jose/East Bay/Silicon Valley/Peninsula region.

 

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Here at The Cinderella Company, we offer many different magical storybook themes for you to choose from.  Imagine the look on your child’s face, as their dreams come to life as their favorite character interacts with them. Imagine the delight in your little girl’s eyes as the Princess she adores calls her by her name. Imagine the surprise your little boy will have when the superhero he idolizes asks him to help assist in some superhero training. These are not just moments to imagine but realities to experience. From our ever popular snow queen theme to our superhero parties for boys, our parties packages are a true hit with young and older guests.

Please call us today if we can assist you in any way for hosting your child’s event.

855-846-2446

By |October 23rd, 2014|Birthday Party Ideas and Tips, Uncategorized|Comments Off on The Cinderella Company; The Best Princess Party Company

Home-made Chicken Pot Pie

Autumn is my favorite time of year!   As soon as the weather starts to cool, all of my comfort food recipes come out and I start planning meals like crazy.  This is not one of my quick and easy weekday meals, but the recipe makes a lot and the leftovers are great for afternoon snacks for the kids.  My entire family loves when I make these.  I found this recipe awhile back from Laurie McNamara’s Simply Scratch blog.  I’ve made it numerous times.

 

I have some rules when it comes to pot pie making.

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They are as follows…

Rule No. 1: They have to be in individual portions.

Rule No. 2: No “cream of chicken soup” can be used, what-so-ever.

Rule No. 3: There has to be plenty of crust. So much crust you won’t notice that there isn’t a bottom one.

Ya dig?

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To start I poach a couple chicken breasts. It’s real easy, just throw a couple chicken breasts into a glass baking dish and cover them with 3 to 4 cups of boiling water, seal with foil and bake in a 400 degree oven for 30-40 minutes. Done.

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Then I just transfer them to a cutting board to cool, so I don’t burn my precious fingers. A blogger needs her fingers.

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If I ever have leftover cooked potatoes I would just dice those up, skin-on and all… or if I don’t… then I poach those too. Peel, cover with water and foil and bake in a 400 degree oven until fork tender which is about 30-40 minutes depending on their size.

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While the chicken and potatoes are poaching away in the oven… I get started on a little prep. I heat up 3 cups of chicken broth, bring a cup and a half of whole milk up to room temperature and dice up the veggies and cooked chicken

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Then roll out the homemade pie crust dough. (I choose to use Pillsbury dough to keep things simple)I use a bowl that’s larger than the ramekins so that there’s some overlap-age. Then take a knife to trace and cut out the circle. Quickly pop the dough back into the fridge so they stay cold.

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Now comes the cooking part. Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a large Dutch oven over medium heat.

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I add the carrots first {since I think they take the longest to soften up} and cook those for about 5 minutes.

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Add the onion and celery

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Sprinkle with a teaspoon of salt

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…and a half teaspoon of fresh cracked black pepper.

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Once the carrots are soft {but not too soft} I throw in the remaining 6 tablespoons of butter. Yess…. 6 tablespoons.

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When the butter has melted add in the half cup of flour and stir.YIELD: 6 servings PREP TIME: about 1 hour {not including making your own pie crust} COOK TIME: 25-30 minutes TOTAL TIME: 1 hour 30 minutes {give or take}

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Cook the flour, stirring often, for two minutes.

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Then pour in the 3 cups of hot broth and the 1-1/2 cups of whole milk. Simmer until thick… about 5-8 minutes.

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Then throw in a cup of frozen peas…

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…The cubed chicken…

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Measure and add a teaspoon of chopped fresh thyme and a tablespoon of dried parsley.

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…OH! and a half cup {or so} of frozen corn. For, you know… color.

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Stir those all together and check to see if it needs more salt. I always end up adding another teaspoon of kosher salt right here.

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Cube up about a cup of the cooked potatoes. I drop them into some {greased} ramekins, so that I don’t stir and lose them in the pot pie filling.

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Pour the filling over the potatoes, filling the ramekins to the brim.

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Ahh yes!

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It’s a good idea to let the filing cool a tad before placing the pie dough over top. If the filling is hella-hot then it will melt the dough. Not cool. Pinch the crust around the rim so it forms a seal.

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With a sharp knife, make a few slits for ventilation… then pop them into a 375 degree oven for 20-25 minutes or until they are crisp and golden. I rotate my pan halfway through for even cooking. You could always mix an egg with a tablespoon of water and brush it over top before baking to make the crust glossy and gorgeous!

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Comfort food to the max.  Enjoy
INGREDIENTS:
1 pound Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
1 stick of Butter, divided
2 whole Carrots, peeled and diced small
2 Celery Stalks, diced small
1 cup Diced Cooked Potatoes
1 medium Yellow Onion, peeled and diced small
1 cup Frozen Peas
1/2 cup Frozen Corn
3 cups Chicken Broth, warmed
1-1/2 cups Whole Milk
1/2 cup Flour
2 teaspoons Kosher Salt, more or less to taste
1/2 teaspoons Black Pepper, more or less to taste
1 tablespoon Dried Parsley
1 teaspoon Chopped Fresh Thyme
1 recipe for Homemade Pie Crust {check my blog for the recipe!}
6 (10-ounce) Ramekins
DIRECTIONS:
TO POACH THE CHICKEN: Place two to three chicken breasts in a glass baking dish. Cover the chicken with 3 to 4 cups of boiling water, seal it all in with aluminum foil and place in a 400 degree oven to cook for 25-35 minutes. Remove the chicken to a cutting board to cool. When cool enough to touch, dice it into bite-size pieces.

TO MAKE THE POT PIES: Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and grease six 10-ounce ramekins with butter or olive oil.

Roll the pie crust out and use a bowl {slightly larger than the ramekin}, trace and cut out 6 circles, using the scraps to make more if needed. Keep the dough circles in the fridge so they stay cold.

Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a large Dutch oven.

Add in the diced carrots and cook for 5 minutes. Add in the diced onion and celery and season with a teaspoon of kosher salt and 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper. Cook until the onions are soft and translucent and the carrots are soft {but not too soft}.

Now add in the remaining 6 tablespoons of butter and let that melt. Once melted add in the half cup of flour and stir often while it cooks for 2 minutes.

Pour in the 3 cups of hot chicken broth and the 1-1/2 cups of whole milk. Let that simmer, stirring occasionally until thickened 5-8 minutes.

Next add in the frozen peas, corn, cooked chicken, dried parsley and chopped fresh thyme. Stir. Taste add season further with up to a teaspoon more of salt and a little more black pepper if desired.

Place the ramekins on a rimmed baking sheet. Evenly divide the diced cooked potatoes into each prepared ramekin.

Spoon the pot pie filling evenly over the potatoes, filling the ramekins to the brim. Let them cool down a bit before placing the pie dough over top and crimping the edges. With a sharp knife make slits for ventilation.

Slide the tray of pot pies into a preheated 375 degree oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the crust is golden.

Remove and let them cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Enjoy!

By |September 27th, 2014|Uncategorized|1 Comment