A Practically Perfect Day

A day "Practically Perfect in Every Way"...
The most magical day celebrating the Mary Poppins Returns! I was recently invited by the DisneyBound, on behalf of Walt Disney Studios and Disneyland, to experience a day honoring the practically *perfect* nanny and her connection to the happiest place in Earth! Read on for more...

The most magical invitation
A few weeks back, I received the most magical invitation to take part in a day celebrating the Blu-ray release of Mary Poppins Returns. We were asked to don our most fashionable Mary Poppins or Mary Poppins Returns DisneyBounds and experience a fun filled day in the parks centered around the history of Mary Poppins and it's ties with Walt Disney.
Call it Disney destiny, if you will... but this entire opportunity literally was the most magical twist of fate! If you follow along with us on IG, you might remember that at the beginning of March we had to cancel a Disneyland trip due to Ben's flu. So we rescheduled and within a few days of booking our redo trip, I received the message about having a chance to participate in this amazing event!

The day of the event came and I said good bye to PB and Ben since it was a solo invite. The two boys enjoyed an afternoon of "daddy and me" time around the parks while I got to experience what has to be one of the most magical days, ever!

A spot of tea
The Mary Poppins Returns event kicked off at Jolly Holiday at Disneyland. We were greeted by the amazing Disney Studios and Disneyland Parks team who had set up the most adorable Afternoon Tea for our group.
We sampled some of the scrumptious menu offerings from Jolly Holiday, along with some sweet surprises for the group all around.
Soundsational Sights
After finishing up a delectable Afternoon Tea, we were escorted over to a special viewing area for Disneyland's festive Soundsational Parade! This parade is incredible, from the moment it begins with Mickey drumming away, to all the familiar favorites strolling past to a catchy tune, and finally the most appropriate ending: a tribute to Mary Poppins! Let's just say that our stylish little Mary Poppins DisneyBound group got a lot of extra smiles and love from the parade cast when they danced past us! It's a stellar parade and if you're planning a visit to the parks anytime soon, a must watch! 

All about a table and a little Club called 33
After wrapping up with the fun at Soundsational, we were then escorted to meet our guide for the day, Jeff Kurtti, famed Disney historian, aficionado and most recently author to "Practically Poppins in Every Way". Jeff would lead us through a walking tour of the parks, bestowing his vast Disney knowledge and kindness to our group.
As we walked into New Orleans Square of the park, we all started to notice we were headed in a familiar direction... to the entrance of Club 33!!! Now if you don't know the significance of Club 33, a brief rundown is that it's a private, members only club within Disneyland Park. It's legendary and stepping within it's doors is literally Disney hallowed ground. So imagine the group's amazement when we were told that this was our next stop for our day!
We weren't allow to film or take photos beyond the staircase, but having only been in the original club years before, stepping into the new club was just magical! **PB&J fun fact: The lobby of the new Club 33 rests in the heart of the Court of Angels, a place that was once open to the public years before. It's also the site of where PB proposed to me long ago! I dream of the day we get to be back there together to stroll down these steps of memory lane (literally)! But until then, my solo Mary Poppins picture will have to do, lol!

So about that table. We were escorted into the Club for one very special reason... this table
It may not seem like much to an ordinary guest, but there's actually a very direct and important tie in between Mary Poppins, Mary Poppins Returns and this marble table within Club 33. That's because this table was originally used in the first Mary Poppins film within the Banks house hold. Afterwards, it was transferred to Club 33 where it was displayed in the Club until it was asked to be used once again in the sequel film, Mary Poppins Returns! How neat is that?! There's a little photo placed on the table now with autographs from the cast, along with Emily Blunt's Mary Poppins standing int he same frame.

Royal Suites and Disney Dreams
After wrapping up at Club 33, we were then escorted to a place near and dear to my own heart: 21 Royal. Again, if you've been following along with us long enough you already know our special ties with this magical space. If not and you're curious, you can read all about our 21 Royal Celebration HERE.
Although we've already had some 21 Royal dreams come true, the experience being in the suite again was still truly magical. I'll never take moments like this for granted and I'm thankful for each incredible visit to this special place, especially since it was under such a special context!
We learned about the rich history of this suite. How the space was originally envisioned by Walt Disney to be his new private residence, a space for his family and to entertain his guests. Sadly, Walt passed before it's completion, so the project was never fulfilled. the space later went to be used at the Disney Gallery, then decades later, the Disney team finally completed Walt's vision and completed the suite. They turned to the original concept art by the famed Dorothea Redmond and brought Walt's dream to life. The suite was dubbed the "Dream Suite" and was used in the special "Year of a Million Dreams" promotion at the parks. Currently, the suite is now called 21 Royal with it's purpose to be what Walt had always intended: a private retreat in the parks for entertaining. Guests are able to book the experience for themselves and 12 of their closest friends or family for the most magical evening in the suite, a multiple course gourmet meal and touches of Disney magic that would make Walt Disney proud. And yes, I'll vouch that it's exactly as (if not even more) magical as it sounds!
So how did this suite tie into our Mary Poppins experience? Well not only did the Suite embody everything Walt Disney wanted in his original vision, but if you look closely around the space, you'll see hint of some practically perfect decor around the room. 

The sweetest finale
As if our Mary Poppins experience wasn't mind-blowing enough, our final stop took us to the most magical place of all: Walt Disney's Apartment. There's a tiny space right above the Main Street Fire Station, you may have even noticed it on one of your visits to the parks. The little light that shines through the window right above... That's where Walt lived... Walt Disney resided in this tiny apartment during the construction of Disneyland and later he and his family would use this space as their own when the park was finally open.
We weren't allowed to take photos inside the apartment, out of respect for the Disney family since this was literally Walt's "home", but let me tell you, it's a powerful sight to step into a space he once occupied. Logistically, the space is tiny. It about 500 sq. feet and can be described as a little studio. There's a tiny kitchenette, complete with a grilled cheese maker (one of Walt's favorites!), a living room that doubled as where he slept, and tucked into a tiny corner a little bathroom. 

We were told stories of Walt living in this space, how he'd wake up and stroll around the park in his robe to how he'd dote on his family and grandchildren that would stay there with him. As a Disney fan, this was so overwhelming. Each person in our group had tears rolling down their faces. It's a powerful moment to realize you were in the same "air" as Walt Disney. The man who created such a legacy, the man who created this happy place for us, we were just so honored to be in such a special place.
The group photo they took for us as our special keepsake!
The word thankful doesn't even begin to cover how I feel about being able to have been one of the few who got to experience this magical day. I'm thankful to Leslie, the creator of the DisneyBound for not only the invitation to this, but for creating such an amazing community of fellow Disney fans. I'm thankful to Disneyland and the Walt Disney Studios for putting together such a wonderful day of surprises and fun for us. I'm just so thankful to have been included in this amazing event. 

As the magical Jeff Kurtti put it, "Disney people just get each other on a different level". It's so true. The day may have been centered around celebrating Mary Poppins and Walt Disney, but it meant so much more. Everyone in the group had come from different backgrounds, platforms, ages, locations... but the one thing that tied us all? Our love of Disney!

I'll never forget this magical day! Thank you once again to the DisneyBound, Walt Disney Studios and Disneyland for giving this Disney mama a chance to be a part of something so special! 💜

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