Thursday, September 26, 2013

WDW - Day 4 at Walt Disney World - Magic Kingdom and the Hall of Presidents

We slept in and had a really late start today thus by the time we got in to Magic Kingdom and to 'Be Our Guest', it was 11:45 and the wait was over an hour so we missed out on the 2nd restaurant that gramma really wanted. We ended up at Cosmic Rays and the food was pretty good with nearly no wait so in the end it worked out.

BARNSTORMER - Or as Austin calls it, 'The Great Goofini'. Austin and I got in line and then I had to go pee so I managed to get out of line on the scooter, get to the bathroom and then back at the exit so I could tak pics. The CM guarding the exit told me I could stand there so I waited with him until Austin got to us and then at the last minute I decided to ride with him. It was fun but pretty bouncy and a little difficult for me to get in and out of. I am not sure I would ride this one again.

COSMIC RAYS STARLIGHT CAFE - Ken and I had pulled pork sandwiches, fries and cake. Chocolate and carrot cake, yummo! Austin had chicken nuggets and fries and a cookie. Table space is a premium but the food was good so I would recommend it. 

TOMORROWLAND SPEEDWAY - Ugh, what to say about this one. I didn't really want to ride but Ken and Austin begged so I gave in despite my concerns about being able to get in and out of the race car. A cast member had to actually life my leg for me because I couldnt get it over the edge and then Ken and the cast member both had to help me get out. Ken and Austin liked it but I would definately watch from the sidelines next time.

HALL OF PRESIDENTS & PRESIDENTS BOOK - Austin loves history and a trip to Magic Kingdom would not be complete without a walk through the 'Hall of Presidents'. He found a non fiction coffee table book about all of the presidents through Obama that he really wanted so I told him I would pay for half so he got it.

DREAM COME TRUE PARADE - We sat in the handicap section (across from the HOP) for the DTC parade, exactly where we sat last year and another excellent view. We all really love seeing our favorite characters come down the street. 

MID DAY REST - I am blogging this during our mid day rest. Its around 430 and Grampa is taking a nap and Austin is doing his homework. As soon as I am done, Austin and I are going to take the golf cart to the the Meadows Trading Post to pick up our purchases we had shipped here from Hollywood Studios yesterday and then we are going to swim for about half an hour before heading back to MK for the night. We still have to do Haunted Mansion, POTC, Tiki House, Tom Sawyer Island, & Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. I also want to try to get on the People Mover and the Railroad but those might have to wait for tomorrow when we go back for the Mickeys Not So Scary Halloween Party. 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

WDW Day 3 - Hollywood Studios & Jedi Training

ROPE DROP CEREMONY, ALMOST. We missed this by a couple of minutes. We heard the music and announcements but got there as people started going in.

STAR TOURS & MORE STAR TOURS. I couldnt keep Austin off this ride. He begged all day to 'just go back one more time, and it only got worse after his Jedi Training and he got his new light saber.

INDIANA JONES STUNT SPECTACULAR. Same great show as always.

PIZZA PLANET. First time to eat here. Food was good, lines were long around 12:30 but the amount and quality of food was good for DDP counter service. single serve small pizza, salad, and a cupcake.

LIGHTS MOTOR ACTION. Again same as always....

HOLLYWOOD PUBLIC WORKS. First time to see this 3 man show. The idea was to pick a new MR Public Works where male contestants had to answer questions to get an award. They chose a female contestant who ultimately won because the public works guys encouraged her to cheat.

WRITERS STOP. The coffee is below average, as were the treats and the service was bad. The barrista got both orders wrong from the people in front of us and it took forever.

JEDI TRAINING & A NEW LIGHT SABER. I think this may go down in history as Austins favorite activity. Pictures to come.

HOLLYWOOD & VINE. We had dinner here after we had to cancel our rezzies at Prime Time at the last minute, after Ken scheduled Austins Jedi Training at the same time. Dinner was buffet style and just ok but we ended up getting priority seating at Fantasmic which was wonderful. pics to come

THE GREAT MOVIE RIDE. This is a favorite of the Williams-Morehouse family. Austin is a little scared when the gangsters come out but he was definately braver than last year and I got better pics this year too.

VIP SEATING AT FANTASMIC.We in the exact middle of the show all the way in the back in handicap seating. It was fabulous. So nice that people kept trying to sneak into our section and the CM had to keep telling them to move.

Tomorrow is my favorite park, Magic Kingdom and my favorite rides; POTC and Haunted Mansion.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

WDW - Day 2: Animal Kingdom and Hoop De Do Review

We wanted to be at the rope drop ceremony at Animal Kingdom today but we slept in and then puttered around getting ready and picking up the scooter so we didn't even walk through the gates until after 9:30.

Here are the highlights of our day;

Finding Nemo: The Musical - One word, Exceptional!

Safari - Ken enjoyed it much more this year because he didnt have to deal with the jarring pain of his arthritic knee.

Lunch at Flame Tree BBQ - nothing worth writing home about (although good enough to blog about apparently).

Bugs Life - new seat movement that scared both Austin and I.

Festival of the Lion King. As good as we remembered and along with pin trading and a rootbeer float, was the highlight of Austins day.

Kens highlight is today was our 1st day of the golf cart. It was fun tooling around Fort Wilderness. We checked out the big pool, the parks, the Settlement and Trading posts, the Marina, and Pioneer Hall. Surprisingly, we didnt see much camp decorations. Austin decorated our windows in ghosts, pumpkins, and Toy Story.

Hoop De do Review; Not the story I was expecting but the show was good, Claire and Six bits were excellent, and the food was average.

Tomorrow we have Hollywood Studios and dinner at Prime Time Cafe.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Walt Disney World Trip - Day 1

Ken, Austin, and I have had a super long day today. We got up at 4:00am to get to Humphrey airport by 6 for an 8am flight. Our flight left on time and was mostly uneventful except for a slight medical emergency; on our flight, I guess some young girl fainted and needed to get oxygen and then paramedics when we landed.

Anyway, we landed around 1230 EST, rented a car and then tried to find a grocery store on our way to Fort Wilderness. By 'try' I mean that we stopped at a gift and super market (next to our favorite chik-fi-let) that was just a tourist trap in disguise. Cases of water were $10 and a 12 pack of pop was $6. If those prices weren't bad enough, the real alligator heads and real baby sharks in a jar certainly sent me over the edge.

We got to FW around 2 and then spent a few hours unloading the car, getting the scooter set up and learning how to dismantle and then put it together again before heading to EPCOT.

Our must dos at EPCOT were;
- Gramma trying Italy Coke at Club Cool. We heard that this was disliked so much that most people spit it out but Austin and I liked it and thought it tasted a bit like Bubble Gum. I actually liked all of them except china which tasted like watermelon. We really liked Israel coke also which was like a spicy lemonade.

- Austin riding Soarin. This ride is a fantasy flying adventure with impacts to all senses. They use wind, a forced perspective on speed, and ocean and orange grove smells to completely make you feel like you flying. I forget how fun this ride is until I get lifted up and then the movie starts.

- Grampa wanted to see Illuminations. We had both heard that this was the best of all the fireworks shows and I do have to agree that it was better than Fantasmic. It had a fiery hot beginning and then fireworks, then some of the buildings in different countries lit up, then more fireworks, and then a huge rotating earth that was lit up with americana images, and then  a powerful fireworks finale that had every cheering and clapping.

Austin got a new mickey baseball hat and gramma got a new disney pin.

My favorite part of the day was dinner at La Hacienda. Grampa and I shared a combo some hispanic sounding thing that was essentially a steak, chicken and sausage stir fry with squash and corn and black beans. Austin had steak tacos and then we shared a carmel apple pie and chocolate mousse for dessert.

Tomorrow is another day. Animal Kingdom, then a 7pm hayride, and the the Hoop De Do review at 830. I will try to post some pics but I have to go to bed because I am one tired gramma.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Genie Bra - Comfortable design or the BEST BRA EVER MADE??????

I am just past the 24 hour mark of new Genie bra ownership and I have to say that without a doubt this is the single best clothing purchase I have ever made!

I went on my least favorite shopping trip, BRAs, and couldn't find a single one, NOT ONE, in the whole of Target, in my size so I had to resort to a box of 2 bras that come in sizes like S (yeah right), M, XXL, etc. I grabbed the biggest and prayed for the best and now 16 hours later I dont want to take it off. I am actually going to wear it to bed and see if it keeps me from 'uncomfortably rolling around amongst my breasts'.

If you need a new bra, run to your nearest target and get some of these magical pieces of fabric.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Why do we go to church?

***Note, this is another post where I threw some ideas on a page out but then didn't finish editing so this was several weeks ago the Saturday night before Easter. I am too tired to edit anymore but I am sure you get the idea ***

Ken and I went to church Saturday night instead of attending the Easter Sunday service at the request of our wonderful pastor, Dave Reno, so that chairs would be available for first timers at Easter morning services.

I expected a retelling of the crucifixion and was quite disappointed, as was Ken, when it became apparent that Dave had other plans. Instead of a re-birth, we heard things we need to be doing as Christians because we are NOT in a Once Saved, Always Saved kind of Christian life and again, Dave blessed me with his great knowledge although I didnt quite appreciate until I started really thinking about it, thus the post several weeks later;
1-RECOGNIZE. REALIZE. It never occurred to me that I was sinning without realizing it.
2-CONFESS YOUR SIN and ask for forgiveness.
3-COMMIT. Remove the sin instigators and pray for strength

For me, I also need to learn. I used to think that I didn't have to go to church to be a Christian, but I was dead wrong. Going to church is educational and rewarding. Just do it!

Taking Back Your Faith From the American Dream - David Platt

***Please note, this post was started a few months ago and I forgot to go back and edit/post so 'last Sunday' was actually a few months ago***

For the last several weeks, our pastor has been talking about what it means to be a radical Christian. We are using David Platts book, Taking Back Your Faith From the American Dream, as our resource. The discussion last Sunday was around what radical changes we were willing to make with our money and time. You might be thinking that this was another fundraising sermon from a pastor trying to get money but Dave Reno, Pastor of Grace Fellowship in Brooklyn Park, MN isn't like that. Dave doesn't say give me your money, he just says give to something or someone.

Ken said he thought Dave's sermon made a lot of people uncomfortable. He seen some toe tapping and attendance seems lower than usual but for me, it's been an eye opening experience, maybe even life changing. I KNOW that I need to be freaky for Jesus and that I need to give more time & money but I didnt realized just how selfish I am. It occurred to me that I could donate my Disney fund to something more important than a vacation for Ken, Austin, & I so when I brought it up to Ken and he said absolutely not, I never said another word. We did adopt 2 more children from Childrens International and upped our tithing to a slightly uncomfortable level, especially since I didn't have a job then but its still very affordable since we haven't really had to change our lifestyle AND we just bought a new car.

.......Its late. I'm tired and I cant think of how I want to edit this post or how I am going to address the radical lifestyle idea but I am going to pray about it. In the mean time ........

Did you know that 26k children die every day due to starvation or preventable disease? Did you know that nearly everyone in the US can donate more of their time and money?

If this inspired you to do something, please post and inspire me to do more.

Learning Lessons From Kids

Today was a busy day but one well spent and a life lesson learned from a 9 year old.

I spent the morning cleaning out the garage and then taking my garage sale leftovers, from 2 months ago, to the Goodwill. I had lunch with my friend Marilyn at Truffles in Tortes in Anoka and then Ken & I took Austin and Hannah to the MN Zoo. By the time Jesse picked up Hannah, I was more than a little tired and a little cranky too. Not super cranky, just on edge from a day with little time to myself.

Ken went to bed and Austin and I weren't tired yet so I turned on an old America's Got Talent and while watching it, Austin had to teach me a lesson in acceptance. This dorky comedian was getting ready to come on stage and I rolled my eyes and I told Austin that this guy was going to be a disaster. He says Gramma, how do you know that? You should give him a chance, he might turn out to be good. And ya know how the story ends.....the guy was good.

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Au gratin Potatoes

I have made this au gratin potato recipe for the last 3 years and they are excellent. TIPS - You can also use russets but I use gold because you don't have to peel them. - Cut potatoes in half the long way and then start slicing at the smallest end. Its easier on your hands to cut this way. - DONT slice potatoes to big or they may be hard - I use a glass dish but you can also bake in a metal pan but they will cook faster and may burn INGREDIENTS - 3 pounds sliced Yukon gold potatoes (1/4 inch or smaller) - 1.5 c. heavy cream - 3/4 c. shredded gruyere cheese - 3/4 c. shredded parmesan cheese (not kraft in a can) - 1 t salt RECIPE - Preheat oven to 400 - Mix cheese together in a big bowl - Add salt to cream - Butter baking dish or spray with pam - Add a layer of slightly overlapping potatoes - Sprinkle 1/4 of cheese on first layer of potatoes - Repeat until you have 4 layers and put the last of the cheese on top - Pour cream over all potatoes and bake at 400 for 1 hour and 15 minutes