Thursday, June 30, 2011

Counting to the Magic: 18 Days

One of my favorite rides in Magic Kingdom is Pirates of the Caribbean and I am so excited to be riding it again! It is so much fun and the new Blackbeard part is going to be cool to see! What is your favorite classic attraction in WDW??

Wan to relive the ride like I have been doing? Just check out this great ride-through video!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Counting to the Magic: 19 Days

With only 19 days to go, I can just smell some of those great Disney treats that are waiting for me! While before I talked about the treats that I want to try that I never had before, I also am looking forward to those classic treats that are almost a must on ever trip. These include Dole Whips, turkey legs, school bread, cream cheese pretzel and more! (Tip: Do not eat the cream cheese pretzel before going on Space Mountain...baaaaaad idea!)

Here are a couple of pictures from last June of Chris and I devouring a turkey leg...yum!!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

This Week's It Came From Disney!

This week on the Disney Dispatch I talk about one of my new Teacher items, a Mickey Desk Calendar. Let me tell you though, the caption that Bob gave the article made me burst out laughing! You just gotta read it, so check it out!

Counting to the Magic: 20 Days

Being the shopping review writer for the Disney Dispatch, I am always scouting out new items to purchase.  This is something I am looking forward to doing in Walt Disney World! Going to buy some new shirts and pins and bags...boy do I hope I have a job this fall to pay for all this!!

Want to check out some of the merchandise I will be looking at? Then visit the Disney Store Theme Park section! I absolutely love some of the 40th Anniversary products!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Counting to the Magic: 21 Days

Woo Hoo!!! Yes!!! 3 weeks from today I will be hopefully somewhere in Virginia, or North Carolina if we are lucky, on our way to Walt Disney World!!! I am so excited!! I am going to ride, eat and take pictures!!! In case you couldn't guess from the last 28 or so posts, I am a HUGE picture taker, especially in Walt Disney World! I was down for 6 days on my last trip, took almost 1700 pictures....yea, I'm kinda crazy.

I'm really into landscapes and catching unique angles or any angle that just catches my eye.  Here are some of my favorite pictures from my last trip in August:

Perfect timing for the rainbow

A close up on the castle that is not normally available

Interesting perspective, taken from a moving Dumbo

A side of BTMRR that is not normally seen, taken from Fort Langhorn

Storm clouds over Space Mountain, taken from Astro Orbiter (Yes, it was moving also)

Love the reflection angle on this

Again with the reflection

A rare shot in the middle of the day in Epcot, no people!

The balance on this photo is something that I thought was unique

Odd looking cloud in here...can you spot it?

I love how the two "globes" balance each other in this photo

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Counting to the Magic: 22 Days

Last June, I experienced both water parks for the first time and, I will be honest, I found Blizzard Beach to be nicer and more appealing to me.  There was also more stuff there that I would do, which was nice.  Looking forward to spending some time relaxing there on this vacation. 

Here are some shots from my visits to Blizzard Beach:

Why Yes, that is Chris doing Summit Plummet...I plan on getting video of it this year!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

2 Years of........


How would you describe the last two years of this blog?? Yes, today, 2 years ago, The True Disney Fan came to be and WOW has it grown!! I have been able to write about tons of pieces of information and my writing on here has even led me to write for other websites, like the Disney Dispatch, The Disney Driven Life and even the Philadelphia Examiner!

As much fun as I am having writing this blog, it is really the feedback I get from my friends that keeps me going! Everyone who reads this and shares a story with me or even just says hello really makes me want to continue writing.  I am inspired by what I see and hear throughout the Disney community and I hope that I have been inspiring to someone too!

All I want to say is Thank You for reading and going on this crazy journey with me and you know as long as I can find something crazy to write about, this blog will be here this time next year and, hopefully, for many years to come!

Thank you and Much Love,
Jess (Lady_Aurora)

Counting to the Magic: 23 Days

The last time that my family and I saw Fantasmic!, we had this giant pole in the way of some of the great shots...for instance, the pole looks like it is shooting sparks in the video because it is blocking Mickey who is shooting them out of his hands.

This will not be a problem this trip; we are dining with the Fantasmic package, which not only give you great seats for the show, but is connected to a great dining experience at your choice of Mama Melrose, Hollywood and Vine or Hollywood Brown Derby. We chose Hollywood and Vine, it is a favorite buffet of ours. Plus, if you are on the Dining plan like we are, it is only one table service credit!! Find out more info on the package here! And please, if you have experienced this before, feel free to leave a comment and let us know what you thought!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Counting to the Magic: 24 Days

Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day (Ok, besides dessert), so naturally a special breakfast in Disney is gonna be exciting for me!  This is exactly why I am so excited for breakfast at Kona Cafe! Before Chris and I have an entire day in Magic Kingdom, we are starting it with a sunrise breakfast at Kona Cafe.  We have been told that they have great coffee and their Tonga Toast is a legend in itself! 

Never been either? Check out the menu, courtesy of and see if that is somewhere you would like to try on your next vacation!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Counting to the Magic: 25 Days

Before when I went to Florida, it was all about RushRushRush, Gotta Go, run to all the rides cuz who knows when we will be here again.  After my trip last June with Chris, I had this wonderful experience that I never knew could exist in Disney...relaxing in Disney! I highly recommend this on your next Disney vacation, it really is something memorable and fun!

Chris and I have relaxing time scheduled in different parts of the trip, including one afternoon where we are just wandering the monorail loop together, snacking and exploring the resort areas! I know that this time will be just as memorable as riding attractions!

Here is an image that just screams serenity to me...the view from where Chris and I sat in of my favorite memories of that vacation!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

This Week's It Came From Disney!

I am so excited to announce that I, Jessica Clawson, have beat Epic Mickey!!! Ok, I know, I'm a bit slow at it, but I did it and I was so excited, I wrote an article about it! Hear about Mickey's gaming adventures and read a few of my gaming tips in my article on the!

DDL Post Update

I have begun a new way of writing for Disney Driven Life; I have the ability now to write more articles and get them out quicker, so the news you need to know related to Disney comes out when you need to know it!

This is proven in my latest article, hot of the Disney presses! Al Weiss, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts president, has announced his retirement. To read more about this, check out my article here!

If you hear Disney news that you feel needs to be reported, feel free to send me an email at or send me a tweet!

Counting to the Magic: 26 Days

Magic Kingdom is my favorite park just because of the magic and all that is at that park.  After that though, in a very VERY close second place is Epcot with its beautiful buildings and views and the lovely walk around the world.  In fact walking around that World Showcase is what I am looking forward to doing today!

Here are some pictures of World Showcase, its one of my favorite photographing sites!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Counting to the Magic: 27 Days

I know people have been hesitant about this year's Magic, Memories and You celebration, but after seeing images and previews for it, I am just gushing with excitement! Just the technology alone that it takes to make this show come to life blows my mind and I cannot wait to see it in person!

If you have not seen this castle show yet, give it a look in this video and please leave me your feedback and let me know what you think of it if you have seen it in person!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Counting to the Magic: 28 Days

Since the invention of the Park Hopper Pass, is it very normal for people to be in two, possibly even three parks in one day.  While this has given lots more options for your trip to Walt Disney World, I do miss the days like my first vacation, spending the entire day just exploring all there is to be seen in one park.  Well, on this vacation, we are going back to basics for one day and spending the entire day, from rope drop to EMH close, in Magic Kingdom!! After a very early breakfast at Kona Cafe, Chris and I are gonna head over to Magic Kingdom, hopefully to see the rope drop and then spend the entire day in the park, snacking, riding, watching and just overall having fun!! It will be even more awesome since the park does not close until 2am! That will be about 17 hours in Magic Kingdom!

Was not sure what kind of cool extra to attach to this post, so how about a couple pictures:

This picture is from our first trip to WDW in 2002, the afternoon of our first day! I was actually taller than my sister!

This is from last June on Chris' birthday, Magic Kingdom was open til 3am! We still look a little wet after our midnight run down Splash Mountain

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Born to Run: RIP Clarence Clemons

My family is a Bruce Springsteen family.  My dad was introduced to him by his brothers and saw him in around two dozen concerts, probably more.  When my parents started dating, my dad took my mom to a few concerts and when they lived together, those were some of the first albums played in the house.  My sister and I were born into a house playing Springsteen (not literally, we were born in a hospital, but you get the picture).  I knew the words to Born to Run and Born in the USA when I was around 6 years old. Granted, I didn't know what the songs meant, I just like the rhythms and the drums...and the saxophone.  By 8 years old, I could pick out Clarence Clemons in just about any song.  His style and technique is so unique, there isn't a soul who can make a saxophone sing like Clarence could. And lets be honest, he wasn't half bad at the tambourine either! When I began playing the saxophone in college, I knew I would never get close to his talents, but it was his music that inspired me to want to play.

Below are a few youtube videos featuring the Big Man, including an epic intro that Bruce gave him in England one time, a great Jungleland solo and, my personal favorite, his Born to Run solos.  The Born to Run video is from a live concert and is a little movement-happy, but the views of Clarence is great, plus I love what Bruce did to him in that video.

To quote something that I saw posted on a youtube video: Heaven is having one hell of a jam session right now! Rest in Peace Clarence and thank you for sharing all of your gifts with us.

Counting to the Magic: 29 Days

Today's Countdown is counting down to the ultimate Disney Countdown!! Ok, maybe that was a little confusing...what I mean is that I am looking forward to seeing the Rope Drops in Walt Disney World! My Goal, to see all 4 Rope Drops this vacation!!

Not sure what Rope Drop is? Then read my article written for the Examiner called Disney Terminology Lesson: Part 2 and/or check out this awesome video of Magic Kingdom's Rope Drop from last August!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

unKNOWN Actors: Eva Gabor

This actress we are featuring has a very recognizable voice and an even more recognizable name, Eva Gabor.  Born February 11, 1919 in Hungary and passed away July 4, 1995, Eva is most known for portraying Lisa Douglas on the 1960’s shows Petticoat Junction and Green Acres. Since she is so well known, you are probably wondering why on earth we are going to talk about her on this site.  Well, what is not as well known about Eva was that she had a few Disney appearances in her time, which is naturally what I’m going to be talking about.

She first came to work for Disney in 1963 for a TV movie, voicing Contessa Czigoina in Mickey and the Contessa.

Eva must have enjoyed working with Disney because she accepted her first animated movie voice over job in 1970 providing a voice to Duchess in The Aristocats.

1977 is when we hear Eva again. She is heard in The Rescuers as the brave mouse, Miss Bianca.  She revived this role thirteen years later in 1990’s The Rescuers Down Under.

While her Disney parts are few, she has her place in Disney history because of them.

Counting to the Magic: 30 Days

Woo Hoo! 30 days! One Month until Walt Disney World!!!!! (Plus, today is Chris' birthday!) Today is a good day!!

So, what is it that I am looking forward to doing today?? Adding to my pin collection! I do not collect pins like the typical person who usually does it trade or to get really valuable ones; I use mine to tell a story or to help me remember an event from a trip.  Every trip to WDW that I go on, I buy a lanyard and on that lanyard, I put pins from that trip that mean something to me and will remind me of that trip.  For example, I will buy a pin for my first time going on an attraction or for my first time seeing a new show or parade.  The pins are colorful and fun reminders of my vacations.

Here are some pictures and stories of pins I have collected over my trips:

This pin is from 2002, my first trip to WDW and this was the celebration happening when I was down
I got this pin after my first dinner at Chef Mickey's in 2004

This pin is from 2004 also, I got this because this trip was my first time seeing Mickey's Philharmagic

Can you guess why I got this pin in 2005? My first stay at the Boardwalk Resort of course!

I went on Rock 'n' Roller Coaster for the first time in 2005 and got this pin

Friday, June 17, 2011

Counting to the Magic: 31 Days

There are many first times to experience in Walt Disney World and there are a lot that I will be experiencing on this trip.  One of these is staying in a villa, the Wilderness Lodge Villas! I have looked into DVC for years and really want to buy into it someday, so I am very excited to be staying at villa to see how great they really are!

Want to find out about his place like I did? Check out Deb Willis' site, for some great photos!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Counting to the Magic: 32 Days

I have talked earlier in this countdown about how I am excited to see the new Haunted Mansion queue, so I have to mention the new Winnie the Pooh queue too!! Pooh is one of my favorite characters, so I am naturally excited to see changes made to this!

Here is a video from Disney Parks about the new queue! I really like the Bouncy part!!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Counting to the Magic: 33 Days

With 33 days to go, what I am so excited for is meeting friends old and new at Chris or Cosmic Reid's meet at Bongo's Cuban Cafe! It is July 21st and begins at 8pm! Chris and I are looking forward to seeing lots of people at the meet, so if you are going to be in the Downtown Disney area that night, RSVP to our meet! You can RSVP by the Cosmic Reid page or by the Plancast event. We hope to see you there!