My calendar informs me that it's now less than a week until Christmas. On top of the fact that the year feels like it's gone by at lightspeed (since I had to make at least on Star Wars reference this week, right?), I distinctly remember it being 65 degrees outside just mere days ago so surely it can't be December. While otherwise unnotable, this holiday will mark the third I've spent with my lovely wife and the first that I haven't been able to enjoy the Disney Parks in many years.


But let me cast my pity party aside to discuss one of my favorite activities that only gets better this time of year: resort hopping. On one hand, this could refer to cross-country trips to Walt Disney World from my home Disneyland Resort around the winter holidays, but I actually mean visiting the various hotels at WDW and seeing how each one decorates their lobby and other public areas to celebrate the season. This includes the lovely and delicious looking gingerbread houses that Jeremiah recently highlighted.

Speaking of those gingerbread houses, my wife used to work on property as a baker before moving to Los Angeles to marry silly ol' me. It was fascinating to hear her talk about how they would bake and build the structures, but I really got a kick out of one of her stories in particular: apparently one year the display included presents around it that were labeled to one Disney character from another. However, one Cast Member who was convinced that Anastasia was a Disney film actually addressed one of the gifts from Dimitri to Ana... and they included it anyway. See for yourself:

The bottom present is the one in question

Aside from the intoxicating aroma of gingerbread, the Walt Disney World hotels always have dazzling and impressive Christmas trees on display. Knowing how much of a pain it is to construct my dinky six-foot tree each year, it blows my mind to think of much work must go into decking the halls of the Grand Floridian. Even if all the resorts can't be as grand as the Grand, each does a nice job of decorating in their own way and adding their own unique flair for the most part.

If the holiday spirit in the Parks themselves isn't enough for you, may I humbly suggest a visit to various hotels around Walt Disney World during your Christmas vacations. For one, it's a nice escape from the insanely large crowds that fill the theme parks this time of year. Plus, I feel the hard work that Disney puts into these displays should be appreciated by far more guests than those staying at any given hotel.

With that, I wish you a Merry Christmas... and (although I'll be back before then) an E-Ticket New Year!

Come back next week for more stories and be sure to pick up your copy of The E-Ticket Life book on Amazon or get a signed edition from Laughing Place Press!