Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Be More Epic, Mulan.

Happy Wednesday, warriors!

Today is my morning off- perfect for getting a little extra beauty sleep in the middle of a hectic week... so naturally, I woke up at 7:30! Because I am absolutely, without a doubt a morning person (yeah, THAT morning person), I decided to make the best of it by popping out of bed, popping in a movie, and catching up on the happenings of the Disney blogosphere- particularly those of Oh My Disney, straight from the Mouse House itself!

The number of reasons to love OMD is crazy-high (think of each reason as a Hun in Shan-Yu's army), but at the top of my list is that it speaks the language of my generation. My peers and I grew up getting a new animated masterpiece from Disney; some combination of the nostalgia of that experience with the breathtaking quality of the films has instilled an incredibly special passion for them in 80's and 90's kids. That passion is so perfectly captured in the posts at OMD because the writers ARE those kids! Each post recalls fond memories, makes me smile, and brings a little extra magic to my day.

Why the long introduction, you ask? This particular morning, I chose to pair my game of Oh My Disney catch-up with a time-tested classic: Mulan. While watching/reading/making a dinner casserole (did I not mention that in my morning run-down?), I was reminded of how many super intense epic moments there are in Mulan, and that their proper appreciation would be best accomplished in classic OMD style- with a list! (It's more exciting than it sounds, I promise!)

And now, I present to you: instances in which Mulan is just too epic for words.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

A Royal Reminder

Happy Tuesday, princes and princesses... okay, pirates too!

I promise I haven't abandoned you! As I'm sure all of you have experienced, sometimes life gets in the way and juggling it all can get a bit overwhelming (I mean, we can't all be Gaston- have you seen him with those eggs?). Don't worry- I'm not here to bore you with the hairy details! I just wanted to let you know that I'm here, I'm staying, and that regular posting will resume as soon as things settle down.

I know that when things get hectic, it's easy to lose sight of what's really important in the hustle and bustle. I am certainly not the only one battling crazy schedules and high expectations this summer, so I thought I'd share one of my go-to pieces of affirmation when I feel like I'm lost in the shuffle. Remembering this simple mantra (and everything that it means) helps me to stay true to myself even on the toughest days... because that is what a princess does!

If you're having one of those days, weeks, months- heck, even years-, please remember that you are special, you are human, and, most importantly, you are you.

Love and Pixie Dust,
Becca <3

P.S.- The Princess and Pixie Dust Twitter and Instagram accounts have officially gone live! I'm hoping that both will be fun and exciting ways communicate with each other! 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Music Monday: Broadway on the Brain

Hey guys!

Remember when I said that starting a weekly series would keep me accountable for posting regularly? Yeah, me neither...

I kid, I kid... which is why this procrastinator is currently sitting at the computer, determined to get this edition of Music Monday out before I have to change its name! As I'm sure some of you know, last night was the biggest, most highly anticipated evening of the year for the theatre community- the Tony Awards! The tidbit that most of you don't know is that musical theatre is one of my great loves (second to Disney, of course! Don't let's be silly!) and that my childhood and teenage years were primarily spent on the stage. I attribute much of my affinity for musical theatre to the brilliant films of my childhood; Their sweeping scores and dynamic stories inspired me before I even understood the immense depth and complexity they held.

My two passions are serendipitously married in the wonderfulness that is Disney Theatrical Group. The sector of the Walt Disney Company responsible for the bringing to life adaptations of their most beloved movies, as well as brand new stories. Regardless of whether the show is a tried-and-true crowd pleaser or an endeavor into untested waters, it is certain to be positively breathtaking. Some of my favorite Broadway shows are the product of the hardworking artists at Disney, and that work is what takes the starring role this Monday!

1) "Seize the Day" and "Santa Fe", Newsies

They protest, they sing their guts out, they do five-hundred pirouettes consecutively*, and they look darn adorable doing it. 

*Not an actual statistic. 

2) "Shadowland", The Lion King

It is impossible to listen to this beautiful piece and not have chills all over. The combination of its haunting melody and powerful lyrics make "Shadowland" a standout piece in the tour de force that is The Lion King.

3) "A Change in Me", Beauty and the Beast

This one holds quite a large chunk of my heart (for reasons far too numerous to elaborate upon at present). Simply put, it is a gorgeous song that so perfectly depicts the path to finding yourself and the  realization of who you are becoming.

4) "My Strongest Suit", Aida

Gosh, this song is just so much fun- perfect to jam to while I'm getting ready in the morning!

5) "Beyond my Wildest Dreams", The Little Mermaid

I don't even think I need to explain this one. Let's all just sit back and marvel in the perfection that is Alan Menken, Sierra Boggess (Ariel), and- most importantly- The Little Mermaid.

Sorry for such a short post today, lovelies! I promise I'll make it up to you! Do any of you have a favorite Disney Theatrical production? Let me know in the comments below!

Hope you've had a magical (musical) Monday!
-Becca :)

Friday, June 7, 2013

Food Friday: Almost There?

Inevitably, there will be a day when you're watching The Princess and the Frog (for the seven-hundredth time) and, while admiring Princess Tiana's effortless preparation of delectable delicacies, think, "Hey- I could totally do that!". Okay, in this particular situation, "you" is "me", and the day was this past Tuesday, when I was inspired by Disney's queen(-to-be) of the kitchen to do some experimenting of my own!

Into the pantry I ventured, surveying the area for ingredients that could become treats fit for a frog-prince. After quickly deciding that recreating those famous man-catchin' beignets might be a tad ambitious (the word "kneading" strikes fear into my little baking heart,  and I'll spare you the tales of my unfortunate deep-frying experiences... I don't want to talk about it.), I opted for the simpler, tried-and-true sugar cookie. The ultimate plan was to shape them into bows and Mickey-heads (silhouettes? Hidden Mickeys?) and adorn them with copious amounts of icing and adorableness.

Note: "Plan" is the operative word in the previous sentence, but we'll get to that later...

The cookies began like any others with room-temperature butter, which I set out on the counter to soften  nuked in the microwaved, and creamed with yummy, yummy sugar. Per the norm, egg and vanilla came next. I then completed the optional step of making my little sister a peanut butter sandwich so she would stop eating the batter.

This is where things start to get dicey, so I'll take you through a little bit of step-by-step journey, accompanied by visual aids (read: poor-quality iPhone photos) for your enjoyment.

Stir together the dry ingredients (flour and salt), then SIFT them into the butter because this recipe is turning out to be far more high-maintenance than you anticipated. Add milk.

Messy counter is optional.

Stir the batter by hand, unless you have one of those fancy-schmancy stand mixers (you lucky duck, you), until you cannot possibly stir anymore. Chill dough for at least two hours. Also, remind yourself to just buy the pre-made stuff next time.

Cookie dough, you have been far more trouble than you're worth.

Okay guys, now, if you have Mickey Mouse cookie cutters, you're home free. Roll that sweet stuff out, make some shapes, pop 'em in the oven, and go nuts. If you're me, try to cut the shapes out with a paring knife, fail miserably, and (after shaping a few Mickeys yourself) throw some cinnamon and sugar in a bowl and make Snickerdoodles instead.

Let's not tell Tiana about this one, okay?

What Disney treats are your favorites to make (or eat)? Next week, I'll be attempting to recreate my favorite snack from the Magic Kingdom- any guesses?

Have a wonderful weekend!
- Becca :) 

Monday, June 3, 2013

Music Monday: Summer is HERE!

Good afternoon, princes and princesses (I'm not sure how you all would like to be addressed - any suggestions?), and a happy Monday to you!

One things I'm particularly excited about on the blog is a fun feature called Music Monday! I think we all can agree that Disney music is some of the best in the world (not that I'm a little biased or anything), and it deserves to be celebrated! Disney soundtracks have undoubtedly had an enormous influence on my generation, so I think a weekly nod to the tunes we know and love (and can recite from memory) will be quite apropos! Also, the whole "weekly" thing will keep me accountable for regular posting, right?

Can you guys believe that it's already June?! School is out, temperatures are rising, and this Monstrous Summer is underway! It's felt like summer for quite a while down here in South Florida- our highs have been in the 90s for a couple of weeks-, but between Memorial Day barbecues and graduations, the atmosphere of the season is really starting to set in. My favorite way to get into that free and breezy summertime state of mind is to make a playlist that I can listen  to anywhere; whether I'm headed to work, the mall, or the Magic Kingdom (hey- I can dream!), singing along with some upbeat Disney ditties is sure to lift my sprits up, up, and away! In the spirit of such car-ride compilations, I've gathered 5 of my favorite summertime songs- perfect for sing-alongs!

1) "Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride", Lilo & Stitch 

via  youtube
Okay, full disclosure: I loathe really don't like the beach. I know, I know- that's nearly blasphemy for a girl who grew up a mere 15-minutes from one of the most beautiful shores in the country. I'm not sure why I have such a distaste for it (I blame it on watching too many Crocodile Hunter specials as a child), but if I were surfing with Lilo, Nani, and David, I would brave the waters in a heartbeat! When this song comes on, I can almost smell the salty air and feel the sea-breeze whipping my hair. If you're a beach bum without a sandy retreat in sight, you can be there in spirit with Lilo and Stitch!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Hey There, Hi There, Ho There!

Picture: A tiny girl, twirling dizzily along with Cinderella and Prince Charming. She is not prancing around her living room; she is gliding across the dance floor of an opulent ballroom. The sequins and tulle of her costume (straight from the Disney store at the mall in 1996- you know the one) are diamonds and silk, and the plastic of her slippers, the finest crystal. She is graceful, she is elegant- she is a princess.

A little gypsy, circa 1997

It's a tale as old as time, a classic vignette that could be plucked from any childhood of any girl from any decade past, present, or yet-to-come. This time, it's from mine. I've been a Disney kid for as long as I can remember. At two years old, I walked around the house for hours insisting that I be addressed as "Cinderella" and romped around the backyard, imagining my very own "Jolly Holiday". The wee hours of my middle-school mornings were spent with my portable DVD player (hah!) under the covers poring over behind-the-scenes featurettes, excited by the treasure trove that so suddenly opened to me. Those years unearthed what I had never before considered in the films I grew up with; they were no longer frivolous and nostalgic bits of entertainment, but they were breathtaking masterpieces into which artists and composers and writers poured their hearts and souls. They were legacies, each carrying its own history and significance in the greater whole. 

That "bigger picture" of Disney is what makes it so special Sure, there are the movies, the games, and, oh, the world-wide theme park enterprise (not to mention subsidiaries like ABC and ESPN), but Walt Disney's  empire represents so much more. It is the realization of a man's dream. It is the eternal pursuit of imagination, wonder, and the magic that can transform daily life into an adventure. It is embracing the child inside and believing in dreams. Those principles, I believe, live in all of us, and, while some may be more up-front about it (guilty as charged), everyone wants to set them free. The truths embodied in Walt's legacy are universal. We all want to believe that dreams come true, that happy endings do exist, and that with faith, trust, and a little bit of pixie dust, we can be carried away to wondrous worlds apart. 

Princesses and Pixie Dust is a place where we can. This is a place where Disney fans of every variety- from movie buffs to die-hard park goers- can come together and enjoy the thing they love. With that said, I would absolutely love to find out what kind of posts YOU would like to read! Fun Fact posts? Disney-inspired recipes? Park posts? There's a whole (new) world to explore, and I look forward to sharing it with you- you're as welcome as can be!

See ya real  soon!

P.S.- I haven't quite worked out a posting schedule yet, but you can expect some fun summertime-inspired posts up this week!