Something Magical Happened in Walt Disney’s Apartment

When I received an invitation to the 2014 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration a few months ago my first thought was gratitude. Actually, gratitude is an understatement. I was overcome with emotion because I know how special that invite is and even though it was my third time receiving it I still felt an enormous amount of appreciation. As did my family. I’m still trying to process the entire weekend and all the amazing events and special surprises we were treated to, but there is definitely one experience that stands out as the most unforgettable. We stood in Walt Disney’s private apartment. Literally. We stood in Walt Disney’s private apartment.

Here’s the thing. I know if you’re fortunate enough to receive an invitation to a Disney Social Media Moms Celebration you will be in for more magic than you could ever dream up in your wildest imagination. I knew this particular year would be a little more special because it was the first time Disneyland Resort would host the event, which celebrated its 5th anniversary, and it was being held at the place where it all began. The place where Walt Disney himself had walked, the place where he “played” just like the young-boy-at-heart that he always was, and the place where he spent time with his family. I knew  my own family would create memories to last a lifetime and that is exactly what we did, but not without a little help from the Disney “cast”.

Walt Disney's Apartment at Disneyland

Even though I had personally been to Disneyland about twenty years ago with my husband, this was Cody and Nick’s first trip and since I really didn’t remember much about my first trip this may as well have been a first for all of us. I did, however, remember that fire station on Main Street and the lamp in the window above that is always left on to signify Walt’s presence. I also knew there was a “secret” apartment where that lamp sat and one of my dreams had always been to step foot in that apartment. The only person with a bigger dream to do the same was probably Paul and so I was beyond thrilled when the luck of draw went my way and my entire family received a tour of Walt’s apartment.

Stepping inside Walt Disney’s private apartment at Disneyland is like stepping back in time and while it is much smaller than you might imagine, with two separate beds for Walt and his wife Lillian, and an equally small kitchen area, it was clear to me that Walt and all the family who visited him there had everything they needed. We learned a great deal of history during our tour and some fun Walt Disney facts that I will treasure always, but as we stood in the small living room area something extra special happened that truly made me feel like I was standing in Walt’s shoes. Actually, it was like watching Cody standing in Walt’s shoes. Standing in the place where the man who created all the magic for my boy and his family to experience had stood. The kind of magic that has brought Cody out of his “world” and into ours and into Walt’s. Gosh, I wish I could thank him personally for all the dreams he dreamt and how he would not give up until they were made a reality.

That something extra special I was referring to earlier was the sound of Mickey’s Soundsational Parade as it made its way past the fire station and down Main Street. It was a sound that caught Cody’s attention before anyone else’s in the room and his eyes were focused out the window past where the lamp sits, with a smile so big I wish I could have snapped a photo (or 10). It was in that moment I felt a well of emotion as I realized Cody was enjoying the parade from the very same vantage point that Walt Disney probably had enjoyed it on more than one occasion. And so we all watched and listened, but I mostly watched Cody watching and I felt like my heart could burst at any moment as I was overcome with gratitude for being there with my family. I felt gratitude for this rare treat that few get to experience and I was especially grateful for timing because on this particular day in that particular apartment at that specific moment it was like Walt himself orchestrated the parade to begin just for my family to see. That, my friends, is what I call magic.

Although we were not allowed to take photos during our tour of Walt Disney’s apartment, our guide did snap a few of us to have as keepsakes of our visit. I think I might just have to frame this one.

Walt Disney's Apartment at Disneyland

I was invited to attend the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. I paid my own conference fees and received gifts while there. As always, all opinions and thoughts are my own.

Speak Your Mind


CommentLuv badge