Disclosure: Disney provided me with party decorations and I was more than happy to throw a #DisneySide party. No monetary payment was received. Opinions are my own.
The moment I opened our #DisneySide box that I knew I wanted our theme to revolve around video games. Videos games have been a critical part in Norrin’s development and we’ve had so much fun with Disney Infinity 2.0 Super Heroes that I wanted I wanted to share our experience with a few close friends.
Socialization continues to be a work in progress for us and we don’t do play dates often. We rarely have company. But I knew this would be the push I needed to open the doors of our apartment and welcome friends. My invite list was small: 4 special needs moms and their children.
Being a last minute planner, busy working mom and a (secret) hoarder – my #DisneySide photo booth props from last year came in handy! And I made a few new additional printables – one to share my Frozen fever and another for the goody bags.
While I like to cook (sometimes) and bake (if I have the right recipe) I knew I had to get a little creative. (Though not like creative in – let me know make Frozen snowflakes out of fondant.) So when my friends offered to bring something, I gladly took them up on their offer. Because that’s what friends are for, right? But I did make cupcakes. And they were Star Wars so I’ll take my creative #DisneySide points thank you very much.
Two out of 4 of my mom friends had visited Disney with their kids. Trust me – I get it. I didn’t see the Magic Kingdom until I was an adult and we took Norrin for the first time. You don’t have to have a pass to the parks to feel the Disney magic – it’s everywhere and anyone can obtain it.
What better way to show your #DisneySide than through interactive video game play! Especially a game like Disney Infinity where you have total control over what character you want to be and the world you want to explore.
In addition to playing Disney Infinity, we played Disney Fantasia Music Evolved. I also introduced guests to Club Penguin. I knew that Norrin loved to play these games and I wanted other kids to love them too. Most of all, I wanted Norrin to have the experience of playing video games with his peers.
It was amazing to see to them playing, taking turns, showing each other how to play and cheering each other on. While the kids played, the moms chatted and laughed. And we shared our Disney parks memories or the hope to visit. I talked about our family experience and offered my tips on how to plan and navigate the parks with a special needs child.
As I handed each guest their goody bag, their raffle prizes (Club Penguin game card, pin & Disney Couture ring) and kissed and hugged them goodbye – I felt the bond grow between us. And our love for Disney was the glue that strengthened it.