30 things #5 – Disney On Ice

I’m going to let you in on a secret. I’m not really turning 30 this year at all. I’m actually still a tiny child of about 5, who is absolutely Disney-crazy!

Ok, so maybe not actually, but you could easily be forgiven for thinking that if you’d seen how excited I was about my most recent day out for my “30 things” series.

You know the best part about having daughters? Forget all the soppy stuff about getting a friend for life and helping to raise the next generation of women. Scoff! The very best thing about having a little girl is that you get to plan all the girly, silly, childish stuff you like and tell everyone that you’re doing it for the kids! Ha!

For example, I recently decided to book tickets to Disney On Ice – Magical Ice Festival which was coming to our local Ice Arena. Looking at the list of characters who would be involved (The Little Mermaid, Rapunzel, Beauty and the Beast and drumroll….Frozen!) it was clear that this would be the perfect show for my own little princess. I originally planned to book tickets for myself and Freya, but my two sisters very quickly jumped on the band wagon and asked to come along.

On the spur of the moment I decided to book tickets on the very front row. At over £40 a pop, it was not a frugal decision. But I took a gamble that it would be well worth it. I was not disappointed. We had to have a long discussion over whether Poppy should be allowed to come, as I was concerned about spending so much money on a seat she may not use, but this problem was eventually solved when my sister noticed that under-2s were free!

On the Sunday of the show, it was a team effort to get both girls into their fancy dress costumes (Poppy was Anna from Frozen and Freya was Elsa – complete with braided hair and face paint) before driving into Nottingham.

We had previously booked a table at a local restaurant “Jim’s Smokehouse” where they were offering a “Children eat free” deal for people with Disney on Ice tickets. We arrived in fabulous time, ordered our meals and were blown away with how quickly we were served.

BBQ Chicken Wings at Jim’s Smokehouse

The food was delicious and the portions were enormous! Far more than I could comfortably manage. The restaurant has an American-style BBQ theme, so there were lots of hot dogs, burgers, chicken wings etc to be enjoyed.

We were served so quickly that there was still plenty of time for dessert and so even though I had been sure I couldn’t eat another mouthful, I still managed to share an Americana chocolate cake with Freya. Sinful, that’s what it was.

Finally, it was time to go to the arena for the show. I must admit – we did go slightly over the top on the spending front. We bought programmes, toys, official photographs – not to mention the snacks and drinks before the show started. I’m sure it is possible to go to see Disney on Ice and not spend a fortune, but it’s also very easy to get sucked in and spend far more than you’d anticipated. It’s one of the reasons that I don’t make this a regular event – I’d go bankrupt if this was more than a “once in a blue moon” treat.

No matter the cost though, I would definitely book the front row again – it made the evening feel really special. We were escorted to our seats and a member of staff gave us a bit of a safety talk about not getting too close to the ice and had a really good chat with the girls.

By this point, Poppy was starting to get very restless and I was wondering if we’d made the right decision about bringing her. I was braced for two hours of screaming and fussing.

Then the lights went down, the dancers came out and the show started. And she loved it! She was waving and clapping and smiling – it was like nothing I’ve never seen before.

Freya had a great time as well – she loved the fact that the characters were so close, a couple of feet away at most, that she could wave to them as the skated past. And lots of times they actually waved back.

The show was fabulous, with some amazing special effects and brilliant routines. The Frozen section was simply magical, with thick snow falling from the roof and pyrotechnics to show Elsa’s magic.

Once the show was over, we took two very sleepy but happy girls back to the car and drove them home.

Out of all of my 30 things adventures so far I think this one might be my favourite.  It will certainly be hard to beat.

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