Magical Memories: Christmas Dinner

Magical Memories series hosted by Mouse on the MindHappy Holidays! I just love this time of year–when else can you get away with stringing snowflake lights everywhere, watching cheesy movies and spending many many hours doing crazy complicated origami with colorful bits of paper?!? 

This year, I’m counting down to PRESENT TIME with some of my very favorite bloggers (and friends!) to share stories of our favorite Disney-related holiday memories. Some of them are heartwarming, some of them are hilarious. All of them will put you in the spirit of the season. 

Today’s post is written by someone who’s become very, very special to me over the past ten months: At Disney Again. He is … everything. He is wonderfully sweet and funny and thoughtful and really, really, really smart. I’m super lucky to call him my best friend … and you’re super lucky that our relationship resulted in this story of a warm holiday tradition. (You’re welcome.)


My family is small. There are only three of us: my mom, my brother and me. Most of our lives, we’ve had jobs that have required us to work on the days before and after holidays – sometimes on holidays themselves. Since we usually didn’t have time to prepare a big holiday meal, we long ago started a tradition of going out to dinner on holidays. Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas meals were always at restaurants rather than at home.

These meals weren’t always at Walt Disney World; sometimes they were at local places like Maggiano’s Little Italy or a resort on the beach. However, with time, we noticed that the local places were getting more expensive while the service and food quality were in steady decline. Our Disney meals, which were previously limited to just one holiday per year, soon became our holiday tradition.

Trail's End holiday (At Disney Again)

We’ve dined with our cousins at ‘Ohana for Easter, had Thanksgiving in Africa at Boma, headed out to the Frontier to celebrate Christmas at Trail’s End and more. It’s really a wonderful way for us to get together, put aside all the craziness of our lives and just enjoy the time with each other.

If you’ve never done a holiday meal at a Disney restaurant, it’s important to note that they modify the menu just a bit. Your usual favorites will still be on the menu but they add traditional foods, too – so you can get bobotie at Boma right alongside your Thanksgiving turkey and ham.

While the exotic foods, excellent service and beautiful surroundings are great, there’s one much deeper reason that this holiday tradition is so special to me: when eating a holiday meal at Disney, my family gets along. There’s something very unifying about a meal with the Mouse. My family is the bickering type, always disagreeing and getting the last word in. When we sit down to have a holiday meal at Disney, we don’t bicker and we don’t argue. Something magical happens at those holiday meals. Whether it’s Disney magic or the holiday spirit – I don’t know or care why, I just enjoy the peace with my family.

Sounds pretty perfect, doesn’t it? Have you ever enjoyed a holiday meal on property? Let us know or tweet @MouseontheMind!