Wednesday, October 7, 2015

The Best Halloween Ever by Anna J Stewart

Here's something a lot of you might not know about me: I'm a serious Disney freak.

Okay, most of you probably know that about me and while a number of my friends cringe at the idea of the Happiest Place on Earth (ahem, you know who you are), me? I could live there. I could go every year. I would even be tempted to move to...um. Never mind. No, I wouldn't.

What I did do three years ago (thanks for the reminder, Facebook), was head to Disneyland during Halloween season. My BFF and I had always wanted to do one of the holidays there, so this seemed the perfect solution. And, I have to say, whatever Disney celebrates, they just do it right. Guests become immersed in the season and the spirit (ha!).  Yes, there are crowds and yes, this is possibly the biggest market of commercialism on the planet, but I don't care. I even donned my Merida inspired dress (my hair makes it an easy fit) to join in the festivities.


Okay, yes, the dress is purple so it's pseudo Merida (minus the bow and arrows), but I had a good time Trick-or-Treating. The smell of pumpkin spice and hot chocolate fills the air, the strained tunes of haunting music filter through the invisible speakers and strange skeletons, pirates, and creatures walk among the entranced.

One of the things I love is Disney's attention to detail. Every inch of space in the park pays homage to the given season (someday I'm getting there for Christmas!) and while I'm not a big Halloween fan in general, the cutesy/creepy aspect fits my personality to a T.


Especially when it comes to the Haunted Mansion, which they deck out in all its NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS finery. This ride is one of my faves anyway, but they really go the extra mile at this time of year. The only down side was we couldn't find pumpkin fudge (don't ask--I wasn't the one looking for it, LOL). There were, however, endless arrays of treats and goodies to be found throughout the park.



As a writer, I love the idea of world building and I honestly think that's where my fascination with Disney comes in. From the second you walk into the park, you are immersed. You become part of the story, which is the same thing we as authors try to do for our readers. So whether you're a Disney fan or not (and it's okay if you're not, I promise!), finding those worlds to escape to can make life all the more richer. And fun.

So now you know my favorite way to spend the spooky season. How about you? Chime in in the comments--I'd love to know.  :)

A geek at heart, national bestselling author Anna J Stewart writes "refreshingly unique, quietly humorous, and profoundly moving romance" (RT Book Reviews) for Harlequin Heartwarming. THE BAD BOY OF BUTTERFLY HARBOR will be released in December and will launch her Butterfly Harbor series. visit her online at www.authorannastewart.com to read more about her books and to join her mailing list.


23 comments:

  1. Love it! I took my three kids to Disney World for Halloween several years ago. Lots of scary fun : )

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    1. Someday I'll have to do H-ween at Disneworld . Thanks for posting, Heather!

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  2. You’re not alone. I know many people who make the pilgrimage to Disney every year. I’ve done it several times myself with my kids. Some excellent pictures and you look great in that dress. Hope you get to celebrate Christmas there.

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  3. Anna, I love this post and I join you in your Disney love. I am sitting here drinking coffee out of one of my Disneyland mugs. I've been there just before Halloween twice now. It is sooo much fun. Nightmare Before Christmas Haunted Mansion is my favorite. One of my nieces shares my love and we went back in May for the anniversary celebration. Amazing. Exciting news for her - she just got accepted to Disney College! She'll be leaving for Florida in January and will be working at Disney World for several months. What choice do I have but to go visit her?

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    1. Disney College?! Omg--dream. Come. True! How awesome is that? So jealous and of course you need to visit! Need a traveling companion? :)

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  4. Oh, Anna, I'm with you. Spent a lot of my youth in Southern California, so Disneyland was often on our agenda. When I married Ron, we spent his birthdays there - he loves Pirates of the Carribbean and choux firtters! We'd stay late often and watch the fireworks - that's so amazing. One of my last memories of my dad was on Tom Sawyer Island (is that still there?) when he hid in every cave to jump out and scare us (and we were all adult!) and shook the suspension bridge and just had the best time! Well, rats. Now I don't want to work, I want to go to Disneyland! You do look great in the dress and your hair is fabulous.

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    1. Yay! Another Disney fan and Pirates is so much fun. I could ride that ride continuously . I'm with you--I wanna go back now! :) And yes, Tom Sawyer Island is still there but I think it's going to be a bit different when they build the new Star Wars section of the park.

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  5. LOVE! You have to give it to Disney, they know how to make an experience one you'll never forget. There is never a detail overlooked. Your pictures are awesome. I love to spend the holiday with my kids. I enjoy handing out candy to all the adorable little guys in the neighborhood and watching scary movies with my teenagers.

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    1. *waving* Hi, Amy! Must be fun to do the holiday with kids . I turn out all the lights and hibernate Halloween night, LOL. And I hate scary movies! Eeek!! I blame Stephen King

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  6. It's been years, but I always loved the Haunted Mansion. Doing it at Halloween must be amazing.

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    1. It's one of those bucket list things, Beth. :) Yay, another mansion fan. Thanks for posting!

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  7. I was there once, in the 70s, and now I want to go back. Sigh.

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    1. My first trip was in 1974 (I was 4) and I still remember it. It never gets old as far as I'm concerned. Thanks for stopping by, Liz! <3

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  8. I haven't been, but would love to go. Maybe soon now! Love your pictures and I couldn't tell the dress wasn't black. :-)

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    1. Hi Patricia! Yes, some day you have to go! Maybe we need a Heartwarming field trip

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  9. You should have married my brother. They go to Halloween every year

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    1. *snort* And I know it's your favorite place on the planet

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  10. I am the biggest scaredy cat. I can't imagine surviving the Haunted Mansion. I have to hang with Tinkerbell. :)

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    1. Ha, ha, ha! That's a brave admission, Jill.

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    2. It's actually pretty tame, Jill--I love all the special effects. If you go during the daylight hours its more manageable . It's really creepy at night tho. I'll keep your secret tho...you're among friends. Yay, Tinkerbell! She's my hero, LOL

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  11. Sadly, it's true Muriel...and I work for the police department! Fortunately, for the citizens, I'm a civilian. :)

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  12. I don't know how I missed your post yesterday, Anna. I loved the post and the pics!

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