Wednesday, February 27, 2008

February in Florida, Part 3--The Guilty Pleasure of Disney (Magic Kingdom)

After talking a few blog posts back about how we are "principle shoppers," it might seem odd for this feminist mom to talk about how much she enjoys the Disney experience. I do claim it as a guilty pleasure, because there is also so much about Disney that I abhor: the gender stereotypes, the excessive commercialization of the "Princess" culture, and the fact that either one or both of the parents die in practically every Disney movie, to name just a few. I hate the fact that toy store aisles are either pink or primary colors, and that we have to choose between princesses or sports on many clothing items. What are we teaching our children, for God's sake?

However, there is much about Disney to admire as well: the pure fun of it all, the ability to hang out and have a blast together as a family, the positive principles conveyed in Disneyana, and the magic of the whole experience. For every Disney movie or character I dislike, I can find others I enjoy. My personal faves are Lilo & Stitch and Mulan for their strong female roles (and great music). Kieran loves Peter Pan and all the princess stories. Chris has enjoyed all the recent Pirates of the Caribbean movies (as have I, Johnny Depp fan that I am!). And everyone loves Mickey and Minnie Mouse, and Winnie the Pooh (although there is a huge dearth of female roles!!). So there you have it...just like the Catholic church, much to abhor and much to admire. (You might be asking what I admire about the Catholic church, and here are three things: the commitment to peace and justice, the nuns, and laypeople who truly believe in living good lives.) (I won't even begin to list all the things I abhor!!) :)

Here is a photo montage of our day at the Magic Kingdom--all too short and enjoyed by all (in spite of a mid-afternoon drenching downpour in which we got totally, utterly soaked!!).

Chris went on Space Mountain THREE TIMES!

Shortly after arriving in the park

Nicholas' first time on "Dumbo"

This is another thing I love about Disney--
It's a great age leveler--
Chris & Kieran have a wonderful time together!

Kieran's favorite--Peter Pan and Wendy!

Posing with the villains!

Chris got chosen to participate in an impromptu pirate skit--
with a dead ringer for Jack Sparrow and his sidekick!

Pretty convincing, eh?

Posing with Mickey

In Minnie's house

Hamming it up in Tomorrowland with Pleakley

Right before leaving in the evening

This was Nicholas' favorite part of the Magic Kingdom, by far--
he absolutely LOVED the fireworks. They were spectacular.

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