Leaving the Kids Behind

 Over the years, I’ve heard many people say "Disney is for kids".  

However, last year, my husband and I spent 3 days in the most magical place on earth celebrating our 10 year wedding anniversary...

Alone.  (gasp!)  Without our 3 kiddos. (double gasp!)

No double stroller.

No huge diaper bag. 

Alone. No kids. Headed to Disney World?!??!!

Alone. No kids. Headed to Disney World?!??!!

Did we feel out of place?   Absolutely not!

Were we bored?  No way!

We rode Seven Dwarfs Mine Train with our arms straight in the air.   We hugged the necks of some of our favorite characters.   We explored World Showcase in Epcot for hours.  We walked hand in hand through the parks, had long, uninterrupted conversations as we waited in line, and strolled leisurely around the grounds of our resort.  We ate ice cream for dinner! (Don't judge.)

At the beginning of our getaway, we were given Happy Anniversary pins to wear and heard well-wishes from cast members and guests alike throughout our stay.

Celebration buttons are a must!

Celebration buttons are a must!

At one point, we even stopped to talk to some friendly Disney cast members who noticed our anniversary pins.  In a magical Disney moment, they escorted us to the secret entrance of a ride and took us straight to the front of the line.  We felt so special!

This trip left us refreshed and ready to come home to the three sweet faces of our kiddos who helped fill the last ten years of our lives with so much fun and love.

We learned something, though . . . 

The same place that holds such wonderful memories for our whole family was able to create magical memories for just the two of us, as well.


My name is Leah Bowman, and I am a wife and mother to 3 precious kiddos. We started traveling to Disney World as a family when my oldest son was only 1, and I was immediately taken by the joy I felt and saw in the eyes of my husband and son as we spent time together as a family in the most magical place on earth. We’ve since traveled many more times, first with our second son, and then with our daughter. We’ve made many priceless, precious memories together on our Disney vacations!

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Once upon a time, there lived a little girl...

Once upon a time, there lived a little 7-year-old-girl who had  NEVER  BEEN  TO  DISNEY WORLD.

To her, it was the  saddest  story  ever.   (And to be honest, also to me, her mommy.)

I have three kids, but only one daughter. ..so that makes her a little special.   This special daughter, at age 7, was obsessed with Disney and Disney Princesses and Disney Channel and Disney Radio and anything and everything Disney. 

As I saw my sweet 7-year-old start to grow, I started to notice the things she left behind.  Her greatest love was once Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, but one day it occurred to me that we hadn’t watched the “Hot Dog” dance in a while.

Favorite toys were changing.  Clothes were changing.  Appetites were changing.

My 7-year-old would soon be an 8-year-old.  Then a 9-year-old. 

And soon I’d be staring at an 18-year-old young lady.

This glimpse into the rapidly approaching future tugged at my heart.

I decided to MAKE Disney World HAPPEN. 

I wanted to someday look at that 18-year-old and think of the open-mouth stare she gave Cinderella’s castle as a starry eyed child the  first time she walked in Magic Kingdom’s entrance.  I wanted to remember her thinking Big Thunder Mountain Railroad was the most intense ride ever.  I wanted to have pictures of her missing teeth chomping down on a Mickey Bar.

I wanted that magic for her....   but also for me.  

So WE WENT!!

Since that first trip, we’ve been back to Disney World multiple times.  Now my 11-year-old girl has years of magic and memories stored up.

And I  have years of magic and memories stored up.

And while a Disney vacation won’t always make the most sense... it will always be a priority for our family.

I can’t make time stand still, and I can’t keep my kids little...

But I CAN make the time I have with them magical. 


I am Amber Bruggman, and I am awesome. (76% of the time.) I have a husband and three kids who help make that 76% happen. I’ve lived all over the midwest, and I desperately try to get to Orlando as much as possible. I fell in love with Disney while planning my very first trip, and if I can’t be plunking down a deposit for myself, I want to be doing it for someone else.

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Vibe-ology

Post by: Maggie Weaver

View of Deck 11 & 12, along with the Aquaduck -Disney Fantasy

The Disney Cruise Line provides unlimited fun for all ages, especially for 14-17 year olds. Yes, that's right . . . Disney has crafted the perfect no-parents-allowed "club" space for teens to hangout, meet people their age, and enjoy vacation time away from responsibilities: Vibe! 

Teenagers usually cringe (sometimes even become mentally sick) at the thought of being stuck at a crowded pool full of screaming kids, having to spend an entire week enclosed in the tight quarters of a stateroom with their family, or being bored out of their mind without internet access. Luckily, Disney is well aware of what a teen really finds entertaining. Through Vibe's counselors and activities, you don't even have time to think about the word "miserable" (unless, of course, it's from eating too many Peel&Eat shrimp and ice cream cones).

The First Day:

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE encourage your teen to check out Vibe on the first night of your cruise. New environments and people you don't know can be overwhelming for some people, but the Vibe counselors make meeting friends easy with games, "Ice Breakers." and the most delicious smoothies. Finding Vibe is actually the hardest part of getting to the fun--it's hidden at the very front of Deck 5, but the entrance is accessible on Deck 4. Explore into the tunnel of the running track, up the white-camouflaged stairs, then through the "Hotline-Bling Tunnel" (the name teens recently dubbed this color-changing entrance). Remember, making friends is the ultimate key to your teen having a blast on your trip!

Days at Sea:

Trust me . . . Your teen will NEVER get bored on this cruise. Vibe is fully stocked with the latest Xbox/Wii consoles and games, Just Dance, foosball, it's own private pool, and a drink bar where you can get anything (non-alcoholic) ranging from Coke to exotic mixed drinks like the famous Sarah Sunrise (sprite, pineapple juice, and cherry flavoring). Everyday, the Navigator (a detailed schedule of all the activities aboard the ship) is loaded with special onetime experiences exclusively meant for Vibe teens. This includes learning to DJ with a professional, getting to chat with the theater performers like Aladdin & Genie and learn about their jobs, star in the hilarious Disney Original movie "Zombified", etc . . . Not to mention, Vibe gets certain teen-only hours at Goofy's Sports Deck, mini-golf, shuffleboard, ping-pong, and the Aquaduck water slide. Keep a close eye on the Navigator so that you don't miss out on winning prizes for dominating in foosball, Mario Kart, or Just Dance battles.

Castaway Cay:

The activities of Vibe don't cease once docked at Castaway Cay. In fact, Vibe is extended onto Disney's private island, where your teen and their new friends can play volleyball, soccer, tetherball, learn how to train stingrays, and much more in the "Teen-Hideout"! Also, Wild Side Teen Adventure excursion ($49--which requires you to book in advance) allows you to go snorkeling, cycling, and speedboat riding with the Vibe counselors!

Extra Special Teen Events:

A few events you really DO NOT want to miss include the Pirate Dance Party, Karaoke Night, Glow Jam, and the Zombified movie premiere. Argh, matey! Grab your pirate garb, hop over to Deck 11, and join Vibe's private party section for the Pirate themed dance party and fireworks. Afterwards, challenge the Edge Club in a pirate game show. Secondly, at midnight in D Lounge, Vibe counselors host a huge karaoke battle. Everyone sings along and laughs as hilariously bad and good singers, comedians, rappers, and counselors do their own renditions of Ice Ice Baby, High School Musical, Sweet Home Alabama, etc . . . Next, on one of the last nights of this magical adventure, Glow Jam turns Vibe upside down. Dance the night away, yet again, to the Cupid Shuffle and the Wobble group dances. Peers vote on best hair, brightest smile, best dressed, funniest, and best dancer as you celebrate. Also, everyone decks out in glow sticks and gets white t-shirts for their new friends to sign as a keepsake. Last but certainly not least, the hysterical movie filmed over the past week, Zombified, gets a special showing in the Buena Vista Theater open to the public! At the very end, counselors show a slideshow from the most fun week of your life to say goodbye.

Pirate Party fireworks (Disney is the only cruise line that can launch fireworks at sea)

Disney guarantees a magical vacation for everyone, and wow do they go "to infinity & beyond" to help teenagers meet friends, go on epic adventures, and most importantly make fantastic memories that will last a life time!


About the Writer:

Hi, everyone! I'm Maggie Weaver, Alison Weaver's (owner of Kingdom Concierge) oldest daughter. I'm 16 years old, and Disney is my favorite place to vacation because of their unbelievably amazing service, their quality of amenities, and the magic they provide that makes everyone feel like a giddy child again (in the Parks and aboard Disney Cruise ships)

Alice and I at Disney World in Florida - Epcot - World Showcase - England

Alice and I at Disney World in Florida - Epcot - World Showcase - England

Why am I qualified to tell you how great Disney Cruises are and that Vibe is THE PLACE for your teen to have a blast? Simply because I am a teen who's experienced Vibe, participated in all of these activities, and made unforgettable memories with tons of people from all over the world that I can now call life-long friends. Below are some pictures of my friends and I having fun on one of my past Disney Cruises that will hopefully give you a more personal glimpse into the magical adventure of sailing with Disney!

Magic at Every Mile

Princesses, villains, classic Disney music . . . even trumpeters atop Cinderella's Castle; truly magic at every mile.  

In February, Walt Disney World hosts the annual Disney Princess Half Marathon Weekend.  This is a 3 day weekend of family friendly races through various parks that begin before opening hours.  

Everyone in the family can participate regardless of ability!  Before Sunday's grand finale of the Disney Princess Half Marathon, Friday & Saturday races include the Disney Enchanted 10K, Disney Princess 5K and Kid Races ranging from a Diaper Dash to a 1 mile.

In 2014, my family and I (Stacey Baker) participated in this bucket list must weekend.  It far exceeded our expectations!  Besides, when else can you where a tiara for a whole weekend and fit right in?  

I wish I could put to words how fun and inspirational this weekend was for us.  They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so . . . 

IMPORTANT TIP:  

Register ASAP because this popular race fills up fast! Registration typically begins mid-July.

OTHER DISNEY RACES:

Disney offers race weekends all throughout the year at various Disney Resorts with a variety of themes: Star Wars, Super Heroes, Wine & Dine and more.  Click HERE to take a peek.


My name is Stacey Baker, and I am a third generation Disney enthusiast! My first trip to Walt Disney World was in 4th grade. I still remember the wonder of seeing it as a child! Over the next 30-something years I would go back again and again and each time have a completely different adventure. Must be that Disney magic!