Disney, Life+Style, Uncategorized

Disney – The miniseries: Part Four: The Future and 100 Years Of Magic

I often ask myself “will Disney be my life forever?” and it is mostly followed promptly by “It will always be a major part of your life but it’s your choice and yours alone.”.  I don’t remember a time when I didn’t obsess over Mickey Mouse and Disney, and this is why I still do what I do.

I have a nephew/godson named Oliver,  and he is the future.  Oliver is not even two and already he is shaping up to be another Disney fanatic.  I know this isn’t something to be celebrated but I feel so happy that somebody will be there to carry on my legacy once I’m no longer around.

Speaking of legacies, this year’s Disney On Ice celebrates Walt Disney’s legacy – one hundred years in fact.  Although Walt didn’t see one hundred himself, his life and body of work still inspire millions of people every day. 100 Years Of Magic was originally created way back in 1999, and this is the third time it’s visiting Newcastle. After numerous remodels, this version includes modern smash hits such as Frozen and the Disney Princesses to timeless classics such as Toy Story and The Lion King.

Making memorable moments is synonymous with Disney On Ice.  I know first hand how valuable these memories are and Disney On Ice has the ability to connect the young and the old plus lets the child in all of us roam free for an hour or two.

Disney On Ice – 100 Years Of Magic skates into the Newcastle Entertainment Centre from July 13-15, just in time for the middle of the Winter School Holidays!


Disney – the miniseries: Part Three – Disneyland Bound

I eventually reached LA at the ripe old age of twenty five, on the back of travelling around the UK for three weeks. I’d just hopped in the shuttle bus and we hit the highway, a six lane heading south and it was peak hour on a hazy Friday afternoon. I had never been exposed to a major highway while driving on the left hand side of the road. I recall feeling extremely scared, I just arrived in a new country and here I was, sitting, thinking “Is this all worth it?” while tears welled up in my eyes. We hit Universal Studios on Saturday and shopped on Sunday, Monday was the day – the day I would realise my childhood dream.

I was excited but calm; I had to be able to think, as this day would be etched into my memory forever and ever amen, and I couldn’t afford to do something profoundly stupid that I will have burned into my brain for the rest of my life.

I went on nearly all the rides, but the main reason why I went was to meet someone who has been a significant part of my life since I was three years old – Mickey Mouse. I took my Mickey so he could share the spoils of meeting someone who is a God in my world.

We wowed everyone, I felt like every set of eyes in that room were fixed on me, my best friend and the most famous mouse in the world. It felt so good to see so many people take an interest in a kid from Australia realising a dream. My mother cried when I hugged Mickey, but I just thought to myself ”You did it mate, you realised your dream!”

In the final instalment of this miniseries, I will discuss what the future holds and preview this year’s Disney On Ice.


Disney – the miniseries: Part Two – My Fantasy World

Most teenagers don’t like Disney, Disney is strictly for kids under ten. Not for me, I believe that Disney is for everybody regardless of how old they are.

I was just a lost teenager growing up in Newcastle in despair. I wanted to get to Disneyland at any cost – like any other kid. Disneyland was the ultimate dream. I cried when someone I knew went over, screaming in pain because it wasn’t me. I was distraught because it should have been me. Nobody had waited longer than me, so I virtually outranked everybody.

I didn’t have any other real interests besides Mickey, Disney and footy. I lived and breathed Disney. Lunchboxes, backpacks and clothes were just the tip of the iceberg. My favourite Mickey plush toy sat on my bed, pride of place surrounded by my other Mickey toys. I still take him to bed now, because again I know no different.

In the next instalment of this particular series, I will recount the most important week of my life – the week my Disneyland dream came true.


Disney – the miniseries: part 1 – Beginning

I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t into Disney. I was given a Mickey Mouse plush toy when I was about one by my mother and he became my best friend, going to and from daycare and preschool then my first weeks at Big School. He was my pacifier , security blanket and number one playmate. Mickey went wherever I went, and if he was forgotten, all hell broke loose .

I was five when I went to Disney On Ice for the first time, on a school night in a circus tent in the middle of the carpark of what was Marathon Stadium. I don’t remember much, because I fell asleep and my only memory is being carried out afterwards, waking up on Mum’s shoulder. So from then on, it was daytime sessions only. Tickets weren’t cheap, so that would be my major outing for the year, and merchandise wasn’t cheap either so instead of pocket money, I got a program and a toy if I behaved myself leading up to Disney On Ice.

By the time I was ten, Disney was an obsession, I had every video, knew every song and had everything I wanted. By the time I was thirteen, I was starting to get edgy if I was denied anything Disney and cried when Disney On Ice finished, because this meant that it was over and Mickey was going to another city, far away from me.

Teenage years were difficult, because I developed mood swings and Disney wasn’t ‘cool’ so I felt isolated. People called me a baby, I found school very lonely and I cannot tell you how many attempts to smuggle Mickey into my bag to accompany me in those dark days.

I liked my life, I had everything I wanted and didn’t give two hoots about what other people thought. In the next instalment, I will explain my lows and my bad behaviour surrounding Disney.

Hot Topics

Gender Doesn’t Define

In the news this week, the Victorian state government announced a crack-down on “gender definition” in schools across the state.  This generally means any kids franchise such as Thomas The Tank Engine and Peppa Pig will be scrutinised under a new crack-down, something said characters wouldn’t understand.  Here’s my take on it.

As a kid growing up with a disability, I played with toys that I was able to play with unassisted (Except Barbie, Barbie needed to be dressed).  I wore blue and pink,  owned a big, yellow Tonka truck, watched Johnson and Friends and owned a Baby Born.  I loved getting down and dirty in the garden, that was after I came home from shopping!  I saw no difference between me and the other children, I was different because of my Cerebral palsy not because of what I did.  In my opinion, my lifestyle was a great balance of boy stuff and girl stuff, something I have continued into my adult life because I can.

When I heard the news about the Victorian government’s plan, I cringed, “Isn’t anything sacred anymore?” I thought with the biggest eye roll I could muster at 7:35 in the morning.  I believe in gender equality, but not going this far.  There wasn’t a law banning boys from the Barbie aisle at Kmart nor was there ever a public outcry over a little girl picking up a Bob The Builder plush toy.  Kids are their own personalities and we should be embracing that.  If I ask my nephew when he’s older “what do you want to be when you grow up?” and he replies “I want to be a Preschool teacher, Aunty Kait!”, I will just smile and give him a high five or a cuddle and say “That’s great to hear Oliver,  go chase your dreams buddy! “.

I will close this post with a quote from a song from Linkin Park, “In the end, it doesn’t even matter”

My Top Ten

My Top Ten: Obsessions


    1. Disney – in particular, Mickey Mouse.
    2. Music – you deny me my headphones, we aren’t friends.
    3. YouTube – I love watching TV shows from my childhood, tutorials and music videos.
    4. Yoga – a Monday ritual.
    5. Chocolate – it’s amazing how a little brown edible rectangle can provide so much happiness.
    6. My iTunes account – has to always have credit in it and I keep topping it up, so it constantly has at least $20 credit in it.
    7. Bags – I’m a woman, what do you expect?
    8. Morning Cuppa – A simple little cup of tea after breakfast makes a big difference
    9. Reading and writing –  reading is how I relax, and writing is how I communicate best
    10. My imagination – for me, creativity is the essence of life and how I escape the world around me
Local Matters

Jets soar high into the decider after ten years of turbulence


Win As One: Photo courtesy of The Newcastle Herald

Our Newcastle Jets are in the A-League grand final against Melbourne Victory, can you believe it? It has been just over ten years since we last were in the big dance, so let’s look at how much has changed in ten years.

Firstly, let’s look at what 2008 was like in Newcastle.

      1. Kevin Rudd was the Prime Minister of Australia
      2. You could walk from Queens Wharf Brewery to Hunter Street Mall via a footbridge.
      3. You could still catch a train into Newcastle station and shop at David Jones.
      4.  Opal cards weren’t around, so it was still bus fares and paper tickets.  In Newcastle, buses still had three digits, and you could go to the shops on one bus without changing.
      5. The Store was still open and was owned by Con Constantine who also owned the Newcastle Jets.  Constantine was stripped of the Jets’ licence in 2010.

Speaking of owners, Nathan Tinkler Huge then took over and promised Newcastle the world.  Tinkler was a prolific businessman, specialising in mining and owned Patinack Farm, a horse racing stud.  Newcastle believed in him, but he had plans to build a coal loader at Kooragang and got the community onside before he unveiled them by then purchasing the Newcastle Knights.  Again,  Tinkler promptly promised an NRL premiership within three years by bringing Wayne Bennett in to coach the team.

Nathan Tinkler eventually went bankrupt and put the club into voluntary administration, so the Newcastle Jets were looking for a new owner again.

Enter Chinese business, Ledman Group,  a leading LED screen manufacturer.  Ledman Group bought the Newcastle Jets in June 2016.

Ernie Merrick was appointed the coach in May 2017, replacing Mark Jones, who was the Jets’ assistant coach who took over after Scott Miller was sacked in September 2016. Ernie has turned a team that were wooden spooners in season 2016/17 to potential premiers for season 2017/18 and restored faith in a city’s sporting pride.

Now, the Newcastle Jets’ faithful (Including yours truly) have something to cheer about, a grand final berth and the grand final is in their hometown.  Tickets sold out in minutes,  member allocations were exhausted within hours. The Football Family allocations were also exhausted within minutes of going on sale.  Flights to and from Melbourne are booked out and finding accommodation in Newcastle is like searching for a needle in a haystack.

Football Federation Australia is working closely with broadcasters and Newcastle City Council to set up live sites so the locals who missed out can join in the festivities. Those details will be finalised by the end of the week, and I will be sharing that information on Life + Style.