Disney Now and Then: Disney Birthdays!

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I turn 31 this week! And no, 31 isn’t a pivotal age. It’s not ‘sweet 16’ and it’s not the big 21, but in a weird way, 31 is actually a big year for me. When I turned 30 last year, it was a turning point for me. I wished my 20’s goodbye, and while I was actually looking forward to starting the adventure that would be my 30’s, it turned out to be a very difficult year. I felt like I grew up the most last year, and I learned how to juggle adult responsibility with staying young at heart. I’m proud to say that not only did I get through it all, but it truly opened my eyes to what’s important to me in my life, and how I will live my life in my 30’s. And turning 31 is proof that I survived the transition period. It’s gonna be great. For my birthday week, I’m actually indulging in some much needed relaxation in Brooklyn, but I thought it’d be fun to take a look back at my two monumental birthdays that also happened to be Disney birthdays. Here we go!

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21st Birthday!

When you officially turn 21, one big thing happens. You are finally allowed to drink. And it’s exciting. To be able to show off your ID and tell a bartender, “I’ll have a Blue Hawaiian. Wanna see my ID? I’m totally 21. Look!” Turning such an important age HAD to be celebrated near the Disney Parks. My parents booked me a room at the Grand California hotel. Fancy, right? I spent the afternoon hanging out with my parents on the property. I indulged in my very first birthday drink, which was a margarita as I dozed off poolside. In the evening, I actually hung out at Lost Bar. I had no idea Lost Bar would soon become my favorite watering hole. Remember Lost Bar? Quiet place for Disney cast members to grab a post-work beverage? It is now the wildly popular Trader Sam’s, but I will always remember it as this tiny piece of heaven where I kicked off being 21. I hung out all day with my family, and in the evening, my friends met up with me at Lost Bar. I only had about 4 drinks on my 21st birthday, but I didn’t know better, and I mixed tequila with rum with who knows what else. Let’s just say that I was so relieved that I could walk to my hotel and sleep in a comfy bed that night. I turned out to be a Disney light weight.

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30th Birthday!

When I turned 30, I made a goal that I would celebrate by visiting the Magic Kingdom for the first time. It turned out to be a very special trip, because I was accompanied by my boyfriend who had never ever been to a Disney park. Half the fun was sharing my love of Disney with him and seeing him love it as much as me. It was seriously the coolest thing! We arrived at Magic Kingdom as a couple New Yorkers who could figure out the Disney transportation system like pros. We ended up seeing Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios in one day plus Epcot for last call, because why not? The day was full of rides, shows and sightseeing and it was absolutely perfect. The cast members were sweet as can be too. I even got birthday cake!

Alright, kids, now I’m off to start celebrating my birthday. This year, to celebrate surviving a year of my 30’s, I’m heading off to brunch to grab a bloody mary and read a book. Then I’ll probably stumble into a used bookstore and dance through my neighborhood listening to Disney music. I’m thinking later this week, I’ll probably see Zootopia and I’m gonna try to go to this magical place called Spa Castle to get a massage. It’s gonna be a great week. Ok, time for a bloody mary. Bye!

Erika Jenko
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Posted on March 2, 2016, in Articles, Disney Now and Then and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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