Top 10 Disney Christmas Movies

Top10CmasLogo

I like to think of myself as a Christmas movie connoisseur and a bit of a collector. I’ve been collecting a long time, and my kids enjoy all the great movies in my giant, Christmas movie tub that is only opened once December rolls around each year. I wanted to share with you what we think are the top ten Disney Christmas movies, that we enjoy each year. I know there are wonderful non-Disney Christmas movies as well but we are just going to list the Disney movies this year. Maybe it’s time to add one of these to your collection!

10. Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmas

MickeyOnce

A great collection of Christmas stories with Disney’s classic characters. We love the Mickey and Minnie take on the Gift of the Magi. Narrated beautifully by Kelsey Grammar. This is a wonderful Christmas movie kids love.

9. Mickey’s Twice Upon a Christmas

MickeyTwice

It was so wonderful the first time, why not make another? While this sequel isn’t quite a good as the first, it is still a favorite with kids with new Christmas stories.

8. The Muppets Christmas Carol

MuppetChristmas

This Muppet rendition of the classic Christmas Carol is one of my favorites. The humor is perfect while the music is by far one of the best soundtracks for a Muppet movie. This movie is very well done and a family hit every year. It’s hard to believe it is 20 years old!

7. One Magic Christmas

OneMagic

This is one of my favorite movies at Christmas. The story line is very real and the acting is excellent. Mary Steenburgen is fantastic as a worn-down mom who has lost her Christmas spirit, and her adorable children want to give her back her love for Christmas again. Not done in an over-the-top cheesy Christmas movie way, and a movie that will really hit home to the heart.

6. Mickey’s Christmas Carol

MickeyCMasCarol

The Mickey version of Christmas Carol is one of our favorites as well! This version is well done and our kids enjoy it every year. Even after 30 years, this Mickey cartoon is a classic families love.

5. Prep & Landing
4. Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice

PrepLanding

These short Disney movies, made for TV, are so tinsel that every child loves watching them! The first story is about an elf, Wayne, that doesn’t get promoted, in the North Pole corporate ladder, and loses his enthusiasm for his Prep & Landing job right on Christmas Eve. The sequel is a great followup, with the same elf forced to complete a mission with an elf that works on the Naughty List. The story is cute and the gadgets and jokes are hilarious.

3. The Santa Clause

SantaClause

One of our favorite movies each year, we love to watch Scott Calvin become Santa Claus reluctantly and remember his real love for Christmas. My kids love the North Pole scenes and the elves the most.

2. The Santa Clause 2

SantaClause2

As a sequel, this is a great one! Our favorite Santa has to find his Mrs. and it is a hilarious journey! This movie seamlessly picks up where the first one ended, and my kids love to see all the magic. They also love to see the new characters like the Tooth Fairy and Mother Nature.

1. The Nightmare Before Christmas

Nightmare

Is it Halloween? Is it Christmas? It’s kind of both, and we love it! Clever script with amazing music, this movie is a family favorite every year. And you can watch it from October until December! Quite a deal!

Honorable Mentions:
Santa Buddies
Beauty and the Beast’s Enchanted Christmas
Babes in Toyland

Did your favorite make our list? Did I miss one? We hope you enjoyed our list and you are inspired to start your own Christmas movie collection or add to it!

More Top 10 Lists

Top 10 Disney World Quick-Serves

Top10WDWQuickLogo

While on vacation in Walt Disney World, families will most likely visit a lot of the resort’s quick-serve restaurants for family meals. While typically, amusement park fare sticks to hot dogs, hamburgers, fries and all the fried, greasy menus of the like, Disney World really breaks out of the mold and offers families many different options that are healthy and delicious. In fact, some of our favorite places to eat are quick-serve restaurants because of the outstanding food that we had.

With that said, here is our list of top 10 quick-serve spots at Disney World, that we think your family will enjoy visiting. And we wouldn’t recommend it if we didn’t love it!

  1. Be Our Guest – Lunch. At Magic Kingdom in New Fantasyland, this is one of the newest restaurants at Disney World. The lunch menu is different from the dinner menu, and lunch is a quick-serve while dinner is a table serve. Sounds confusing, right? Think of it this way: for dinner, you need a reservation; for lunch, you don’t! The lunch at Be Our Guest is truly delicious and unique. I had one of my favorite meals here and I couldn’t believe it was a quick-serve. The atmosphere is magical with the design of Beast’s castle inside. And meals are served on nice dishes with real silverware, and brought right to your table. Magnifique!
    BeOurGuest
  2. Columbia Harbor House at Magic Kingdom in Liberty Square. This restaurant has a great menu and some of the most delicious dishes. While they serve traditional fish and chips dishes, there new sandwiches are outstanding and we loved the grilled salmon. Kids will love the traditional menu although it could use a few more healthy options for kids.
    ColumbiaHarbor
  3. Contempo Cafe at the Contemporary Resort. This little quick serve inside the hotel has quite an extensive menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner, making it a great stop for hotel guests. But it is open for all visitors and we put it high on the list because of how delicious their dishes are. Their sandwiches and flatbreads are great – we particularly loved their unique Hot Turkey Sandwich. And their kids menu has many choices, which is great for picky eaters. And this quick-serve offers Take-Out as an option, which is nice if you want to take it back to your room.
    ContempoCafe
  4. FlameTree Barbecue in Discovery Island at Animal Kingdom. This restaurant offers traditional barbecue fare: smoked chicken, ribs and pulled pork. If you like barbecue, this is the place to visit for a delicious quick meal. Kids will enjoy the Mickey Check Meals as well as some usual kid’s menu items. Seating is all outside but offers nice shaded areas as well as quiet views of the water.
    FlametreeBBQ
  5. Katsura Grill in Japan Pavilion at Epcot. This quick-serve offers a variety of Japanese dishes from noodles to stir-fry to sushi. All dishes are delicious and healthy. Cast Members are very friendly and helpful, and seating inside and outside is pleasant. We particularly enjoy the outside seating that sits up a bit and overlooks Japanese gardens and Koi fish, as well as the Seven Seas Lagoon.
    KatsuraDining
  6. La Cantina de San Angel in Mexico Pavilion at Epcot. Authentic Mexican food in a beautiful location at Epcot. We love the menu and the food is great. Our kids loved their empanadas. There could be a bit more veggies offered with everything, but that would be my suggestion at all quick serves. Dining is either outside, overlook the water, or inside a lovely dining are that is shared with  La Hacienda.
    LaCantina
  7. Sunshine Seasons in The Land Pavilion at Epcot. The food court style quick-serve offers breakfast, lunch and dinner. The nicest part about this spot is that there are many different choices for everyone in your family. We have enjoyed both lunch and breakfast at this restaurant, and we have enjoyed everything we have tried. The kids can pick from a variety of choices. There is a lot of seating although this is a very popular dining spot so at peak dining times, the seating can be full.
    SunshineSeasons
  8. Pinocchio Village Haus in Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom. We chose this restaurant because the food is quite good, although it lacks a bit on the healthy food side. Their new flatbread pizzas are delicious and the pasta is great. Only choices for kids are mac-n-cheese or pizza. But parents will enjoy the other dishes they offer. One suggestion: split an order, because their portion size is quite large.
  9. Backlot Express in Echo Lake at Hollywood Studios. Menu offers hamburgers, sandwiches and salads. The food is well done and the kid’s menu has some good healthy options they will enjoy eating. The atmosphere is fun with movie set props and decorations. Seating is available inside and outside (shaded).
  10. The Mara at Animal Kingdom Lodge offers a blend of African and American flavors. They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner in a relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere. Kids will love the choices – one favorite is the kid’s salad with chicken. Their flatbreads are great as well. If you are staying at or visiting the Animal Kingdom Lodge, this is a great option for quick-serve dining.

Those are our top 10 choices for quick meals at the World. While we still think more healthy options need to be offered for kids, we think Disney has come a long way with their quick-serve choices and really offer guests some fabulous food for fast dining. As always, Disney restaurants are willing to make changes for dietary restrictions or allergies, or even picky eaters (like ones who don’t want sauce on their noodles!) Don’t ever be afraid to ask!

What is one of your favorite quick-serve restaurants at Disney World?

Top 10 Disneyland Quick-Serve Restaurants

Top 10 Disneyland Quick Serve Restaurants

DL_QSLogo

At Disneyland Resort, there are many different options to choose from for quick serve restaurants. We have compiled our picks for the Top 10 places to stop and grab a bite, that we think not only have delicious food for parents and kids, they also offer some great healthy options to choose from as well. This list includes Disneyland, California Adventure, Downtown Disney and the three Disney hotels on property (Disneyland Hotel, Grand Californian, and Paradise Pier)

  1. Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta – Located in California Adventure in the Paradise Pier area; This restaurant tops our list based on the delicious new menu offering flatbread pizzas (we love the BBQ Chicken), pastas and salads. They have two great Mickey Check meals for kids including spagetti and turkey meatballs or a turkey meatballs sandwich, while also offering standard kid fare. There is plenty of seating and you can enjoy the pier atmosphere.
    PSEars Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    Boardwalk
  2. Redd Rockett’s Pizza Port – Located in Disneyland in Tomorrowland; This restaurant is a kid favorite because it offers all their favorites: pizza and spagetti. Adults can choose from pasta dishes, pizza by the slice and a variety of salads including Asian Chicken and Pizza. Plenty of inside seating although it isn’t the most exciting atmosphere. Kids typically think this restaurant is pretty cool and fun.
    PSEars Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
  3. Flo’s V8 Cafe – Located in California Adventure in Cars Land; This new restaurant serves up delicious dishes for a quick serve which is why the lines can get a little long. It is one of the few spots in the park to offer breakfast including  kids waffles. Lunch and dinner offer selections like roast beef, pork loin and turkey breast, as well as a healthy turkey salad or a veggie bake. Kids can choose a Mickey Check meal of either turkey or roast beef sandwich. Seating is outside and you can enjoy the views of Cars Land and the clever designs throughout the restaurant. PSEars Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5 stars
    FloV8FloV8_2
  4. Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe – Located in Disneyland on Main Street; This new cafe has a very healthy and appealing menu, as well as one of the most pleasant spots to sit and enjoy your meal. While always offering bakery treats and pastries as well as coffee, for lunch and dinner they also have fantastic sandwiches, salads, soups and quiches. Kids can choose from a very healthy and yummy turkey sandwich on flatbread or mac n’ cheese. PSEars Ratings: 5 out of 5 stars
    JollyH_2JollyH_1
  5. Tangaroa Terrace – Located at Disneyland Hotel; While this restaurant is technically a table serve, the casual atmosphere makes it feel more like a quick serve, so we have put it on our quick serve list. This quick spot serves a delicious breakfast including scrambled eggs, wraps, and french toast for both adults and kids. Lunch and dinner include unique burgers, BBQ chicken sandwich, salads and flatbreads. Dinner can include specialties like salmon and steak. For kids, their Mickey Check meal includes grilled salmon with rice and fruit. You can enjoy delicious food while watching the new Disneyland pool and grounds! PSEars Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
  6. Pacific Wharf Cafe – Located in California Adventure on Pacific Wharf; This restaurant is hosted by Boudin Sourdough Bread company, so the bread here is fantastic! Expect a line at this spot! While they do offer some light hot breakfast options, their lunch and dinner menu is great including soups and salads served in sourdough bread bowls, as well as sandwiches on their signature breads. Kids meals offer a healthy turkey sandwich or our favorite toddler meal, the Power Pack, which includes yogurt, apples, carrots, fish crackers and a banana. These packs are found at a few other locations as well. PSEars Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    PacificWharf
  7. Plaza Inn – Located in Disneyland on Main Street; This restaurant is original to the 1955 Disneyland opening and was Walt’s favorite spot to eat. Their menu includes traditional favorites like fried chicken, pot roast and salads. Kids menu offers Mickey Check meals of penne with marinara. This is a great spot to stop and have a nice family dinner. PSEars Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5 stars
  8. Rancho del Zocalo – Located in Disneyland in Frontierland; This little hidden gem serves great Mexican food! They offer grilled chicken, enchiladas, burritos, fish tacos and tostada salads. Kids menu includes chicken taco with rice, bean and cheese burrito and a toddler meal of arroz con pollo (rice with chicken) or arroz can frijoles (rice with beans). The seating is pleasant and festive. PSEars Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5 stars
  9. La Brea Bakery – Located in Downtown Disney District; This restaurant is both a quick serve and a table serve, so just choose which way you want to go. Their breakfast is scrumptious with pancakes, french toast, breakfast sandwiches, and omelets. Lunch and dinner can include salads, soups, sandwiches and grilled paninis. Table serve adds more selections to the menu including flatbread pizza, steak, chicken and salmon. Kids can choose from hot dog, grilled cheese, mac n cheese or chicken tenders. While the kids menu could be a bit more healthy, overall the restaurant has great food. PSEars Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5 stars
    LaBrea
  10. River Belle Terrace – Located in Disneyland in New Orleans Square/Frontierland. While their adult lunch and dinner menu has delicious choices like turkey breast and BBQ pork sandwich, the kids menu offers more simple choices like turkey or roast beef sandwich. This one really makes the list for their breakfast menu, which offers the original Mickey Mouse pancakes that kids will love! They also offer traditional hot breakfast fare including scrambled eggs and bacon. Have your breakfast while sitting across from the Rivers of America in the morning!
    PSEars Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5 stars
    RiverBelle

There are 10 great spots you can get a quick, healthy meal at Disneyland that your kids will enjoy. While there are plenty of other places to get a quick bite, these have always been the biggest hits with our kids and our parent panel members. For more dining reviews and ratings, visit the Preschoolears website.

Happy Travels!

Top 10 Must-Miss Disney Animated Movies

MustMissLogo

We are big fans of Disney movies, and of course, their animated movies. Disney is known for truly making the best animated movies that families and children love for years and years. With that said, sometimes they have missed the mark. And as much as we love them, we have to say that not every animated movie was a home run. And it isn’t always sequels that aren’t so great, because some of their sequels have been pretty good if not great (Monsters University, Toy Story 2 & 3). So we compiled a Top 10 list of animated movies we think your family could skip and won’t have missed anything. In fact, you would probably be glad to not see them. These movies are not favorites for my kids either which speaks pretty strong. If one of your favorites ended up on this list, I apologize.

Hunchback

1. The Hunchback of Notre Dame – Probably one of the biggest animated flops by Disney. I think it was a combination of cliche characters, poor story, bad choices in voice actors…nothing really went well. Unfortunately, they decided to make a “direct-to-DVD” sequel, which brings us to the next on our list.

2. The Hunchback of Notre Dame 2 – Since the first was so bad, you really can’t expect the sequel to get any better, and it doesn’t. It actually gets worse.

Atlantis

3. Atlantis: The Lost Empire AND Milo’s Return – Two for one for number 3! Atlantis started as an interesting story that just gets too complicated to hold children’s interest. And they find Atlantis so soon into the movie, it is kind of a let-down. The movie sort of falls flat for kids. And then they made a strange sequel with different voices and the story is bad. Definitely a must-miss.

HomeRange

4. Home on the Range – Bad story, unlikable characters, fart-jokes, simple graphics. Just not a great movie. It had potential but fell short.

Cinderella3

5. Cinderella 3 – There was a “Cinderella 2” and it was actually a cute sequel. The kids always enjoy watching that one. But they never want to watch Cinderella 3. It is too scary (for my little ones) with the Stepmother and they don’t enjoy it at all. If my kids always so “No” to watching a movie, I think that says a lot. We’ve only watched this one once.

TreasurePlanet

6. Treasure Planet – Great premise to create a futuristic twist on “Treasure Island” in space. It just falls into the over-used Disney formula of story and character including the cute animal side-kick. The plot loses kid’s interest quickly. The story doesn’t develop to hold interest. It just really falls flat.

BlackCauldron

7. The Black Cauldron – I know this is a classic, but it isn’t a favorite. The story, while creative, is strange and hard to follow. The animation is very dark, and I mean in color, scenery and shade, which makes it hard to see what is going on. The villains are too scary and the accents are too thick. Overall, it is a good one to skip.

Neverland

8. Peter Pan Return to Neverland – First, there shouldn’t be a sequel to a great movie like “Peter Pan”. With that said, this movie is an insult to the first. The plot is boring and the main character is more annoying than fun. The voices are off and the music isn’t good. There is definitely a lack of quality story here.

JungleBook2

9. Jungle Book 2 – Another sequel that shouldn’t have been made. The first “Jungle Book” was fantastic. The story line with the sequel doesn’t work with the first movie, which makes the movie a little lack-luster. And you can’t just change an iconic voice for Baloo and think it will go well, because it flopped, big time.

ArielsBeginning

10. Little Mermaid: Ariel’s Beginning – I think if I asked my kids about this movie, they would say it was OK. Considering how many movies they love, that says a lot. This is actually the third sequel to the original “Little Mermaid” and my kids enjoy the actual sequel. This is technically a prequel. But it lacks good music which is ironic because it is about music. And the story is a bit boring and formulaic.

The truth is that a mediocre Disney movie is far better than some of the movies that other studios produce for kids (I won’t name names here). And I know there are many people who enjoy these films quite a lot. But if you are trying to decided whether to watch one of these movies or choose another one, you might want to skip these in our opinion. There are definitely better Disney animated choices out there! Or at least skip buying the DVD and borrow it at the library instead.

Did I miss a movie you think should be on the list? Or did I include one of your family’s favorites? Leave a comment and let me know what you think!

According to the Kids: Best Attractions at Disney World

preschoolears: According to the Kids

It’s that time again, where I asked my kids what they are thinking and get a glimpse into their interesting minds! This post combines two of my ongoing series’ – According to the Kids meets the Top 10 lists!

Top12AttractionsWDW

I quizzed my four kids after our last Disney World trip to find out the overall top 10 attractions they loved at all four parks. And in true kid style, they couldn’t stick to just 10 and insisted on these 12. I will countdown from twelve to number one, just to build suspense!

12. Dumbo – Still a favorite, and it makes the list simply because my 2-year old kept saying “Dumbo”. My two older just made the cut-off to ride by themselves, so the ride has new excitement.

Dumbo

11. Captain EO – I was surprised this made the list but that is what makes this fun! I guess they really like this movie – what can I say, they have the music in them!

10. Star Tours – We were able to ride this one a few times on our last trip and the kids loved it every time. If your kids don’t like 3D movies, they won’t like this one. But my kids love the 3D effects and the bumping around. And they especially like that it has different parts each time and you never know what experience you will get.

9. Toy Story Midway Mania – Always a favorite at either park! They love the 3D and the interactive games…can’t say anything bad about it except the wait is way too long and the FastPasses run out really fast. If everyone could just stop riding it so much, we could get a chance to ride it over and over and over. Let’s make that happen people!

ToyStory

8. Jungle Cruise – The things the kids loved about this ride was going through the tunnel, and they specifically remember that part. So you never know what kids will love! This classic Disney ride is still a hit!

JungleCruise

7. The Barnstormer – Don’t blink or you’ll miss this ride! It is really that short, but the thrills are just right for kids and mine loved it. If your not sure how your kids will like rollercoasters, this is a good one to start with, and luckily it has FastPasses so you can not wait 45 minutes for a 15 second ride.

Barnstormer

6. Kilimanjaro Safaris – Kids love animals, so it isn’t a surprise this is a favorite attraction. And everytime you ride it, you see something different.

Not taken with a zoom lense, this deer was in touching distance from our jeep!

Not taken with a zoom lense, this deer was in touching distance from our jeep!

5. Kali River Rapids – Basically, kids love to spin and kids love to get wet. So that is why this ride is a favorite. Personally, I don’t like either. But the kids swear this is an awesome ride!

4. Splash Mountain – My kids love this ride at both parks. They love the characters and the little drops and dips inside, and of course, they love the big drop and getting wet. They could ride this one all day!

Splash

3. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad – Another ride they could ride over and over! They giggle and laugh through the whole ride and usually at the end, they say “Again, again!”

2. Mission: Space – They are still talking about this ride to this day! They loved this one so much. Of course, we ride the Green Side (non-spinning side). But they love pushing the buttons and feeling like they traveled to Mars. Big thumbs up for this one!

1. Test Track – I don’t know if I will hear the end of it about Test Track. Best ride at Disney World for my kids, for sure. The new redesign is fantastic and they love designing their own car to test drive. And when it does the power test and speeds past, it truly is an awesome ride!

Those goofs in yellow are us! See how happy we are!

Those goofs in yellow are us! See how happy we are!

We have two Honorable Mentions to our list – the two rides we had to cut, much to my five year old’s dismay:

Tower of Terror – They are split on loving this one, but for my five year old, this ride is fantastic!
Turtle Talk with Crush – A fun interactive “show” where the kids can talk with Crush. It’s not as much fun if they don’t get picked but still a great experience.

What would be your kid’s list of the Top 10 rides at Disney World? Would you add to our list? Leave me a comment and tell me what this would look like, according to YOUR kids!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...