Merry Christmas Disney Friends!

I hope this post finds you well and full of all the season’s happiness and magic.  You, the friends I’ve made within the Disney fan community, are dear to me in a way I could not have imagined when I started this blog over three years ago.  Some of you are fellow bloggers and podcasters, but all of you are Disney fans like me.  Through social media, I’ve been able to see and hear about the adventures you’ve had on your Disney vacations, I get your take on movies, restaurants, resorts, and Disney news.  We may not always agree on everything, but our friendly discussions are part of the fun.

I started this blog as a way to cope with the major life-changing event of becoming an empty-nester.  I’d spent 23 years raising two amazing people in a home full of near constant activity.  Raymond and I encouraged our kids to pursue their interests and we did our best not to miss a single ballgame, dance recital, taekwondo tournament, or school event.  Suddenly – all of that stopped on a dime.  I wasn’t sure how life would be.  I’d heard horror stories and, while I was pretty certain I wouldn’t be thrown into a midlife crisis over it, I did realize I’d have an awful lot of free time on my hands.

That’s where you guys came in.  Suddenly, I had a community.  It started with Tips from the Disney Diva and Devos where I was fortunate enough to be chosen as a writer and was welcomed by the other writers with open arms.  Then I started Living a Disney Life and poured my love for both Disney and my family into every article.  In 2015, two of the best friends I’d made in the Disney fan community, Nick Maglio and Dave Hodges, were kind enough to team up with me for The Disney Exchange Podcast and they’ve kept me laughing every week for the past two years.  I’ve been blessed in a million ways, great and small, all along the way.

Merry Christmas, Disney Friends!  You’ve given me your friendship, your advice, and your care and concern through the ups and downs of life.  You’ve shared your stories, your vacations, your families, and your hearts with me – all gifts beyond measure.  May the peace and joy of the holiday season be yours and may 2017 be a healthy and prosperous year for you and your family.

All my best…Lisa

Feeling Thankful Disney Style

Castle-PictureThanksgiving is for counting blessings and I’m not sure I can count that high!  Of course I’m thankful for my family and friends, my work-family, and my home and health.  I’m also incredibly thankful for you.  Yes, YOU.  You regular visitors and those of you who stop by from time to time.  Most of you are fellow Disney fans, some are young parents, many are understanding empty-nesters (like me), others are co-mid-life-experiencing people who share in my confusion – how did we get here so quickly?  Where did the time go?

Why do I appreciate you?  That’s easy – Life’s full of ups and downs.  We don’t always know what’s going on with strangers we encounter, often we’re unaware of difficulties and challenges our own acquaintances and casual friends are dealing with.  I’m like you and my life is full of unexpected twists and turns.  Being able to share my little corner of the word and my love for all things Disney with you has been rewarding beyond measure.  Your comments, feedback, kind emails, good-natured debates, and constant support have kept me going during some stressful times over the past two years.  You get me in a way many people, who don’t share our Disney passion, can’t.  For that, and your friendship, I’m indescribably grateful.RM-Mickey-Heart-Ornament-Front

I appreciate the fellow Disney fan bloggers and podcasters who came to my rescue when I was saying goodbye to my mom in June – their support and guest post contributions kept me and this blog going – I’ve said it before and it’s absolutely the truth – the Disney fan community is a loving and caring place to be a part of.IMG_3869

I’m thankful for those of you who lend me your ears – The Disney Exchange Podcast as grown over the past year to encompass a humbling number of regular listeners, Twitter followers, and Facebook friends.  I’m so fortunate to have Nick and Dave to be my friends and co-host the show with me…we talk Disney and have a great time every single week.IMG_2293

Happy Thanksgiving, Disney Friends!  May your blessings be bountiful and your home be filled with love, laughter, and happily ever after…Lisa

March to the Beat of Your Own Disney Drum

Let’s face it – the Disney fan community is made up of a unique and wonderful assortment of folks from all over the world, all walks of life, and all different Disney passions.  I love swapping stories, learning new tips and tricks about all manner of Disney topics, and reading (or listening to) reviews and recommendations from some of my favorite fellow Disney fans.  With few exceptions, the Disney fan community is extremely tolerant of all points of view and most debates are friendly and good-natured.  Okay – maybe not on certain forums, but that’s a different topic for a different day.Princess-Half-Mary-Poppins

You are welcome to be the Disney fan who will absolutely defend each and everything Disney does as perfectly perfect in every way.  You’re welcome to be the fan that clings to the past and laments the current state of everything from Disney parks to rides and attractions to movies and TV shows.  You can be a Disney travel guru, a Marvel or Star Wars franchise expert, or the Disney character fanatic or passionate pin trader or collector of Disneyana.  Be one, none, or all of these…if you love anything or everything Disney…

March to the Beat of Your Own Disney Drum

Allow me to elaborate.  I’ve spent the past (nearly) two years pouring my Disney love into this very blog while reading dozens of other blogs by other Disney fans.  Like many of you, I’ve spent hundreds of hours listening to my favorite Disney podcast hosts entertain me with their own brand of Disney love.  I’m a Disney parks and resorts fan, a Disney Cruise Line fan, a Disneyana and Disney pin collector, a Disney movie buff.  My Christmas tree is 100% Disney-themed.RM-Christmas-Tree-2014

Do I love every part that makes up the whole?  No, I do not.  I love Disney in my own way.  I don’t like Dole Whips and think Le Cellier is overrated (it’s TRUE and I’m not ashamed!), I didn’t like Inside Out, I thought Ant Man was great, and I adore The Muppets (in every glorious and horrible performance) and Indiana Jones – I love him so much, I named my dog Henry Jones, Junior!  Do I miss the excitement and novelty of Disney’s Hollywood Studios the way the park was just after it opened in 1989?  Absolutely!  Would I put it back today to its original form?  Nope, wouldn’t want to.  I don’t love every change to my favorite vacation destination, but nothing Disney’s done yet would keep me from coming back again…and again.Disney's-Hollywood-Studios

What I’m trying to say is this:  We don’t have to love everything Disney to be true blue Disney fans.  Being a Disney fan is about embracing the parts that make you happiest and passing on the parts that don’t.  If I go on a Disney vacation and something goes wrong, I will complain in hopes that Disney will fix the problem for future guests (including me).  When Disney asks me to complete a survey, I do and with complete honesty.  At the same time, I will also praise what I love most about Disney right here, on The Disney Exchange Podcast and all my social medias.  Not loving everything does not diminish my love for Disney as a whole.  I’ll be a Disney fan in my own way and hope you will too!

Your turn!  What kind of Disney fan are YOU?  What do you love most – the parks, the home décor, the movies, characters, collectibles, or something else altogether?  What makes you most passionate about Disney?  What would you change if you could?

Speaking of Disney

RM-Podcast-AppThere are a lot of serious discussions going on.  All day, every day.  Debates on what our country would be like with either Donald Trump or Hilary Clinton as our commander in chief, talks about investment strategies during a volatile market environment, opinions traded on how and why Cait Jenner’s voice as a woman may or may not be important to our society.  There are serious conversations about whose lives matter and what’s wrong with our country’s law enforcement system.  Chats by the water cooler about who may or may not be going to hell based on how someone has judged another’s lifestyle choices.  Heavy stuff, all of it.

We’re constantly bombarded with some very serious subject matter.  I do have opinions (lots of them), most of which I keep to myself unless I’m in the presence of a voting booth, the charities of my choice, my investment professional, or my closest friends and family.  The media thrives on bad news, violence, war, and economic woes.  I can only take so much!


Nick and Lisa in Epcot

When I need a break, I gravitate towards like-minded friends among the Disney fan community.  Where we have lively discussions and debates – on a subject we love to think and talk about!  Disney everything.

I’ve been a fan of Disney-themed podcasts for many years.  News, planning tips, reviews, rumors – Disney topics both broad and narrow, funny and serious, full of rants, laughter, anger, and excitement – I was totally hooked and still am.  I listen while I run, clean house, lounge in the backyard, commute to and from the office.  For so many years, it never occurred to me that one could interact with these passionate Disney podcasters, much less become one.


Nick in Podcast Mode


Dave’s Happy Face

After I was fortunate enough to be invited as a guest on some of my most favorite Disney podcasts, I started thinking about how much easier it is to talk about Disney than write about it.  What if I could talk about Disney with a couple of friends on a regularly scheduled basis?  I knew just who to call!  My buddy Nick Maglio was an obvious choice to join me in a new endeavor…he loves Disney as much as I do and has the most amazing Disneyana collection I’ve ever seen!  I called Nick and put a bee in his bonnet (as we say in these parts).  While he was thinking it over, I reached out to another Disney friend, Dave Hodges.  Dave lives near Orlando and had just ended a podcast he did with his daughter (The Dis Life).

Dave doing some show research

Dave doing some show research

The planets aligned – Nick said yes, Dave said yes, and The Disney Exchange began.  I thought blogging about Disney was (and still is) a LOT of fun.  Podcasting about my favorite topic is even more so!  Everything’s better (and easier) when shared with friends.  Podcasting is no exception.  The Disney Exchange gives us the chance to exchange thoughts, ideas, and opinions on a wide variety of Disney topics.  We don’t agree on much, argue frequently, debate hotly, and laugh a lot.  Best of all?  We have fantastic, wonderful, lovable listeners from all over the world.  We appreciate every download and every interaction on Twitter, Facebook, Blab, Periscope and on The Disney Exchange website.  We’ve made new friends, shared ideas, found other new podcasts to listen to and are enjoying ourselves beyond belief.

Speaking of Disney

If you’re a Disney podcast fan, I’d love to know…

  • What are your favorite show topics?
  • When do you usually listen?
  • Do you listen for information or solely for fun/entertainment?

As always, thanks for stopping by!  If you’ve taken the time to download an episode or two of The Disney Exchange, thanks for listening.  We would sincerely love to hear from you on any of our social media locations or please drop us a line at