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Inspiration is contagious

by Andrea Updyke

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I am sitting here at my kitchen table, listening to James Taylor and staring at this blank screen trying to decide where to begin. Because I have been at Disney World for the past week, my head and heart are full of magical memories. But I don’t want this post to be a virtual slideshow of my vacation. It was more than a vacation.

So much more.

To begin, I suppose I should start with the day I received an invitation to the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration a couple of months ago. You see, the first round of invitations had already gone out and I didn’t get one. I had hoped to be one of the luckiest ones, but I wasn’t. As I had in years past I thought maybe next year will be my year and congratulated my friends who would be going.

That was that.

Yet in the nature of true Disney magic, a second round of invitations were sent. To my absolute surprise, I got one! I had NO idea there would be a second round. None! It was quite honestly one of the best surprises I have ever had. I don’t remember if I cried that day, but believe me the tears would come.

I spent weeks planning and anticipating this conference and I was completely blown away by the generosity of every single person who played a part in making this trip happen for me and my family.

I told some friends that I felt like I was caught in a strange tension of nostalgia for the Disney of my youth (because I grew up not far away and went many times as a child) and that of a first-timer because I had never stayed on property. It didn’t matter which side of me was there though because when Disney says they are in the memory-making business, they mean it.

I will never forget this trip.

I plan to share some highlights and fun pictures along with some of the practical takeaways in the coming weeks. But for today I just want to be here in this moment of gratitude. When I started this blog in 2003, I never in my wildest dreams thought that it would lead to the kind of comeraderie and fellowship that I found this weekend. I am truly humbled and so so thankful that I was able to bring my family to this celebration of motherhood, magical Disney moments and social media.

I don’t know that I will ever have another opportunity like this. And I think that is the magic of Disney. They have a way of pulling you out of your life and into their world so every visit, whether it is your first or your 50th, is a once in a lifetime experience. In a culture with so much negativity to focus on, I am positively gushing after letting my dreams out of their cage in a place where they can be free and in many ways, fulfilled.

And while I could say, wow that was a great trip and leave it at that, I don’t think that is what Walt Disney had in mind when he imagined this place. His inspiration, passion and love for making wishes come true for individuals both young and old is contagious.

Life is too short for small dreams.

For more Disney Social Media Moms recaps, check out these posts!

I paid a conference fee to attend the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration at a deeply discounted rate. As a part of this conference, we were provided with complimentary items, special discounts and other benefits such as food and entertainment so that we could experience the magic of Walt Disney World. I was not asked to blog about my experience. All thoughts in this post are my own. 

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12 comments

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12 comments

Robin Plemmons May 3, 2012 - 11:20 am

Love & gratitude is shining through your words. I’m so happy for your memories!

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Jessica McFadden - A Parent in America May 3, 2012 - 11:52 am

Your kindness and thankfulness and pure happiness ring loud and clear. What fun to spend a little time with you in “the Disney bubble.” I am speechless myself!

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Angie May 3, 2012 - 2:34 pm

I can’t wait to hear all about it! 🙂

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