Welcome to those of you joining me from COLORADO MOUNTAIN MOM and those of you just hopping aboard. I am the 2nd stop on our Magical Blogorail.
Although our task today is to reveal our favorite souvenir, I'm having a real hard time doing this as a single selection (or even a group of many). I am a window shopper. So moving around Walt Disney World and its resorts always includes a stop at whatever gift shop is closest. For the most popular items, I know that spending time at The World of Disney in Downtown will take the place of most gift shops anywhere on property. But that doesn't matter, I just like walking around every gift shop since you'll never know what you might find.
My favorite gift shop is MouseGear. Maybe because it's located in my favorite park, Epcot, but probably because it always seems to have what I need or want. There are clothes, toys, snacks, nicknacks and clothes (did I mention that twice?). It's large, with extremely diverse selections and they did have an umbrella when it was raining. I actually like MouseGear better than Downtown's World of Disney.
There are advantages of checking out the various shops around the "World". The jacket I wear whenever the temperature drops below 60 (and is above 50) was found in a resort, and I haven't seen it anywhere else on property. A red t-shirt highlighting the original Mickey Mouse Club is among my favorites, and that was a last minute stop on my way out of Disney Hollywood Studios. I haven't seen that shirt anywhere else at the "World" (and with the design disappearing I could use a replacement).
It is a disappointment that much of the Disney souvenir options are no longer specific to Walt Disney World or specific resorts. Most of the time it's "Disney Parks" merchandise. That's too bad, and a big mistake in my book. I'm told there is some resort (and park anniversary) specific items starting to make it's way back. Way back when I really enjoyed getting logo items from "my resort", whatever it was at the time of our visit.
For a while I was collecting partially hand-drawn cell's available only at the Animation Studio. I actually have a bunch of these, that included a standard print and then a Disney artist would provide a finishing touch, usually characters appropriate to the picture. However I stopped buying these a few years ago, since Disney kept raising the prices and the original drawings seemed to be less personalized than the earlier versions.
So I'm really not sure how I would "rate" my favorite Disney souvenir. There is a little statuette of Mickey drawing a picture of Walt, known in various media formats as the "self-portrait". It just sits on a shelf and I don't see it too often, but when I do, it reminds me that "it all started with a Mouse". I have jackets, t-shirts and sweatshirts that I wear all the time; in fact when I'm not working, it's not unusual for one or more of the clothes I'm wearing to have a Disney character showing (Grumpy is my favorite).
Then there are a dozen or so beverage and coffee cups distributed among various places around the house and my office. I use at least one of these every day, so are they my "favorite"? Then earlier this year my wife bought me the basic Monorail train set to assemble around the Christmas tree this year. You can bet I'll be purchasing some accessories for this. It may likely be my favorite, at least during the Christmas season.
OK. So what is my favorite Disney souvenir... all of them! I am so immersed in the Disney experience every day, that no one item best represents this obsession. Thus, if Mickey or Grumpy or Minnie or Pluto or anyone (or anything) else representing the imagination of Walt Disney is near me, on me, or used by me for some purpose, that is my favorite at that point in time.
Thank you for joining me today. Your next stop on the Magical Blogorail Loop is GROWING UP DISNEY.
Here is the map of our Magical Blogorail should you happen to have to make a stop along the way and want to reboard: