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A Magical New Year

C.C. and Tripp Calloway in their “mouse ears” in 1994.

C.C. and Tripp Calloway in their “mouse ears” in 1994.

As a family, we’re big fans of donning the “mouse ears,” and I’ve been known to sport a Disney princess tiara a time or two, as well. If you’ve followed this column, you might remember that dancing at Walt Disney World in Orlando was my first job as a teen, which was a dream of mine since childhood.

When I worked at the Magic Kingdom, I loved walking through the park, imagining that life could be as perfect as the Disney dream—all “dreams coming true” and “wishes fulfilled.” For the most part, I still try to keep that Disney idealism and optimism alive, and lately, the words of some of my favorite characters have inspired me through a rough patch. Here are a few examples:

“Ohana means family, family means nobody gets left behind, or forgotten.” –Stitch

“The most fantastic, magical things can happen, and it all starts with a wish.” –Jiminy Cricket

“Well! After this, I shall think nothing of falling down the stairs!” -Alice

“Hakuna Matata! It means ‘no worries,’ for the rest of your days.” -Timon & Pumbaa

“The flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all.” -The Emperor from Mulan

“What do you do when things go wrong? Oh! You sing a song!” -Snow White

“You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” -Christopher Robin to Pooh

As we approach a new year, I’ll admit that I’m glad to kick 2012 to the curb. This fall has been full of surprises, and not in the happy sense. Family health crises have come one after another, but we’re acutely aware that things could be so much worse.

Moving into 2013, I’m hanging onto my Disney ideal of dreaming of a bright future and am inspired by the man behind the magic, Walt Disney, who said, “I always like to look on the optimistic side of life, but I am realistic enough to know that life is a complex matter.”

Happy New Year and see you in February,

-Karin Calloway

KARIN CALLOWAY is a wife and mother of two. A journalist and recipe developer, she writes the Wednesday cooking column for The Augusta Chronicle and prepares her recipes in twice-weekly segments on WJBF. Check out Karin’s cooking blog at

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