Sometimes Christmas decor is conspicuous even to the least attentive person. It blends in so well, other times, that you sort of have to find it. Frontierland is a perfect example and I adore the earthy, rustic charm of the design choices made for it during the holiday season with the heavy emphasis on dense, lush garlands and wreaths.
One of my favorite Christmas elements at Disneyland is one of the first you encounter as you enter — the garland adorning the Main Street Depot. I enjoy it so much, I insisted on including it in one of the shots in our Disneyland Christmas time lapse.
Though we have escaped apocalyptic doom this year, we have not escaped tragedy or heartache. It’s easy to get enraptured in the idyllic scenes of Disneyland and forget a somewhat cold reality around us where bad things happen. Forgetting, at least momentarily, is part of the appeal; we can leave today and enter a world of fantasy. Don’t mistake me, I don’t mean this in a negative way at all, quite the contrary. Disneyland is a place where you can go and slough off the refuse of everyday life, a kind of detox for the soul. Walt’s hope that his park would be a source of joy and inspiration to all the world was fulfilled exceedingly and in abundance. But wouldn’t it be wonderful if everyday life were better? I pray the new year will be filled with inspiration to make it so and joy to strengthen us in getting there.
Nothing says Happy Holidays like assorted filters and neon… to a car anyway.
Christmastime is one of those times that has a way of making you stop and look inward to see how things are going. Sure there’s the hustle and the bustle as well but with hope and warmth and love saturating so much around you it’s hard not to find a moment to see how your life matches up to these virtuous themes. Disneyland is a perfect place to find such a moment. Mine was standing right here, at the entrance of Sleeping Beauty Castle, all aglow with her Christmas attire. Contrary to what that plentiful picture takers behind me must have thought, I was not trying to photo bomb their images. I just wanted to capture mine.
This year has taught me a great many things, the most important of which is to value the people around me. It’s a common thread in Christmas cards, movies and music. Sounds easy enough and I thought it was a lesson I had already learned. But I realized that my actions weren’t showing the people around them how much I care about them; how much they mean to me; how my life wouldn’t be the same without them. I’ve allowed myself to become busy with things that when seen by the light of day, pale in comparison. The thing is, it’s an easy rut to fall into. The sun rises and it sets. Each new day brings about any number of mundane responsibilities that need tending to after which you grow tired. When such things have bogged you down, there are no spirits of Christmas past, present or future to visit you in the night and point you in the right direction. Should you recognize such things on your own, there’s no angelic chorus that sings overhead. There’s no big drama about it whatsoever. It’s up to you to wake up every morning and decide that your actions will show the people you love how much you care about them, tired or not.
But, you know, the good thing is that as long as you have breath in your body, it’s never too late. You can change. You can set out in a new direction and should you fall, you can learn to pick yourself back up again. The beauty of Christmas is not the things, the food or the time off but the loved ones we share them with.
Wishing you the most beautiful Christmas…
There’s nothing that spreads cheer quite like the glowing lights of Christmas. It’s a Small World is a testament to that. An attraction whose line is moderate throughout the year will have you waiting in a queue that wraps all around the Small World Mall once it’s gorgeous light display has been turned on. Why? Because there’s something in that warm glow that reaches deeper than our skin. I suspect it’s something different for each one of us; a fond memory of Christmas past; hope for a brighter tomorrow; maybe it’s simply a reminder to cherish the moment you’re in and the people you’re with.