Your helping hand for Disney vacations and beyond!

The Happiest Place on Earth

I may be a Disney Parks pro now, but it hasn’t always been that way. A little over 10 years ago, I went on my first trip to Disneyland. I couldn’t count the number of times I’ve been since, but that first visit is the most memorable. I took hundreds of pictures and ate at some of my favorite restaurants for the first time (Storytellers Café anyone?).

Growing up in West Texas, I was quite far from either Disney Park. As an 80s kid, I watched multiple TV families like the Lamberts and the Tanners taking their trips to Walt Disney World in the mid-1990s and wanted to do the same thing. My family usually only went to nearby Six Flags Over Texas or Six Flags Fiesta Texas, and there’s a big difference from a typical theme park and a Disney Park.

So, when I had graduated college and gotten my first full-time job, I started saving and planning for my first trip to a Disney Park. By this time, I had dreams of moving to California, so I made Disneyland my first visit. Honestly, I didn’t know much about Disneyland other than what I had seen on TV, and even most of that was about Walt Disney World. Arriving at the East Transit Plaza, I didn’t really know what to expect other than some Disney magic.

As I entered the main gate at Disneyland and stepped into the world of yesterday, tomorrow, and fantasy, I was transported into what now feels like home. The stories of my childhood came to life, and I was truly in the Happiest Place on Earth. Boarding a pirate ship on Peter Pan’s Flight was truly as awe-inspiring for me as it was for guests in the 1950s when the park first opened. I think the most memorable experience inside Disneyland Park was Walt Disney’s Parade of Dreams, which was created for the park’s 50th Anniversary in 2005. I took hundreds of pictures and loved every moment.

My first Disneyland parade, Walt Disney’s Parade of Dreams, March 27, 2008.

This trip instilled in me a true love of the immersive storytelling environments that Disney Parks create—truly taking you to places you couldn’t otherwise go. It’s that magic I hope to share with each family that comes to Mouseways for help with a vacation. I wish I had known a little more about how to make the most of my trip. I don’t think I got a single picture with Mickey then! I’ve more than made up for it over the years, and now get to share the magic of the parks with my son. I hope we can help you experience the magic like I did, but even better!