Friday, June 22, 2012


I've been waiting for this day for a long, LONG time. Today is the day Brave opened in theaters. I've been dying to see it! So first showing this morning- I was there. Half hour early. Sitting by myself.

I don't want to say much about the movie- because what if my review disappoints? Or what if my review is so awesome that it raises your expectations and ruins it for you??? WELL? Do you want that? I thought not.

So I'll just say that I rather enjoyed myself. It's a beautiful movie to look at. And to listen to. Not often does a movie score capture me like this one. But- we all know that I'm rather fond of Scotland and bagpipes and stuff. Seriously- nothing puts me in a good mood faster than hearing bagpipes (especially when I'm not expecting it [thank you unidentified person at the cemetery a few weeks ago]).

When we went to Disneyland, we got to meet Merida. Just across from Small World they had a little set up for her. You could spin the wheel to find out which clan you're in (we were in the same clan as Merida) and color your clan's seal.

They also had wee games set up for kids to play.

When you got to the point where you met Merida, she signed our books and took photos,

then we had target practice with arrows. 

I used to be a lot better. Ha!

Anyway, even though it was SEVEN years ago- and only for one marvelous weekend, I still get so homesick. And this movie didn't help. Sigh...

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Disneyland: Quite a Character... dinner

One of the best parts about going to Disneyland is seeing characters. No matter how old you are- you still get a little tingle in your spine when you see the Mad Hatter or Baloo walking down the path. Don't lie. You totally do.

The fun part about going with kids is seeing their reaction to them. I remember the very first time I went to Disneyland, Travis was about four. I remember him being enamored by the characters. This time around, Donaven was less than thrilled at meeting characters. But he's only two. So I'm sure therein lies the difference.

After we hit the road we stayed for a few days in St George with JaNiel's Gramma Betty. At 4:00 a.m. on Sunday we headed west. Well, south and then west I think. anyway...

We didn't have time to do a full day at Disneyland that day- and we didn't want to waste a day, so we started our Disney Experience at the Disneyland Hotel and Goofy's Kitchen.  The first time DJ saw Goofy... well, it was a little iffy. I think he was a little surprised to see this TV character standing across the room. Isn't he only supposed on a screen? Oren was rather indifferent to it all. I mean, he's only 6 months old so he doesn't know yet that he's supposed to be freaked out by a seven foot dog dressed as a chef.

This is the look on DJ's face the first time he's seeing Goofy. You can see he's a little unsure about this whole business.

When it was our turn to meet Chef Goofy, DJ wanted nothing to do with him. You can see he won't let him out of his sight for a moment and he really, really didn't want to be that close to him.

Once we were seated and eating, the characters started making the rounds to our table. DJ of course had no problem charming the Princess Aurora.

But the second Chip came bounding cheerfully to our table, DJ came Un. Glued. He crawled on his daddy's lap and held on for dear life. Trav said he was shaking so much. He was so scared!

Oren was just like, "Whatever, a giant rodent in a apron. Nothing to see here folks, move along."

The next character to come to our table was one I've never seen walking around. Rafiki! So I had to get a photo of him. Awwwww....

By this time, DJ was wary of what might come up behind him. JaNeil got him calmed down enough to sit in his stroller with his back to everything.  So when Baloo came over, we gave him the "Don't let him know you're there look." He understood and very quietly posed for a picture and signed our books.

But DJ is no dummy. He realized there was something happening behind him. And when he looked. He freaked.

After that he didn't trust us. He knew there was action behind him. Pluto also knew to be stealthy.

It was funny because after Pluto wandered to the other side of the restaurant DJ kept saying, "Puppy? Puppy?"

When Aladdin popped by it wasn't so bad, but I'm pretty sure DJ was spent by now. He looked very mistrusting when Al stooped for a photo.

I can't say I blame him. Aladdin looks a little uh... like "he's taken one too many hits from the snake."
But I had a good conversation with him. We discussed the location of Agrabah vs Chubbuck and the pros and cons of traveling via camel and carpet.

Just before we finished out our dessert(s) Chef Goofy made a quick round of the tables.  He noticed my Maleficent purse and was quite appalled that I had it. He picked up my butter knife and made to impale my purse when I quickly explained I was a good guy and that Maleficent was being held captive in my bag. Much like Jafar in the Lamp.  He gave a great sigh of relief and together Goofy and Aladdin left our table.

Then I zipped up my purse so Maleficent couldn't get out. Oopsy. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Disneyland- Eats and Treats

Half the fun for me at Disneyland is the food! There are certain things that I get every time no matter what (usually more than once) and sometimes I try new things.  I took pictures of pretty much everything I ate (before of course... because after would just be gross).


This is an absolute Disneyland MUST. My family *said* they didn't want one. But I bought two just for good measure. Good thing because Donaven commandeered the other one.

Corn Dogs

Disneyland has the world's best corn dogs. Seriously. They're craveable. They're hand dipped deliciousness. I ate three. (not all at once. sheesh.) These are found at a corn dog truck kind of behind the photo shop on Mainstreet, right where the road kind of turns toward Tomorrowland. We also found them at the Stage Door Cafe in Frontierland (which also has pretty amazing chicken strips and fries [I somehow missed getting a picture of that dinner]) and at the Corn Dog Castle in California Adventure.

We're even teaching the next generation to adore them. Donaven ate two.

Hungry Bear Burger and Sweet Potato Fries.

I remember this being a lot better. When I was a kid I ate here and I could swear it was the best burger I'd ever eaten. It was nowhere near as good as I recall and the sweet potato fries? well... I'm sure they're someone's idea of yummy... but not mine. JaNiel got the chicken sammy though and the one bite I had of that was freaking amazing! So next time I'll get that instead! (and fruit slices instead of the fries)

Funny Candy Boxes

I didn't buy these. I'm kicking myself now because not only were the boxes hilarious, but the candy was probably pretty good too (except the gummies. gummies are never good). These were in a store on Mainstreet.

World of Color Picnic Lunches

We were a little misled by the purpose of these lunches. We understood that if you bought them, you got preferred seating for the WoC show. Not true. You get a "complimentary Fast Pass" with each lunch. So we sat in the same area as the 15,000 other people who had fast passes and didn't pay for them. The lunches were good... but mine made me a bit queasy for the rest of the day. I don't know if it was the combination of spices and veggies or what, but I will not be getting this again. 

I got the Mediterranean (veggie wrap, zucchini/squash spaghettini, veggie cous cous, and lemon layer cake)

 Travis and JaNeil got the All American (fried chicken [cold], coleslaw, potato salad and apple pie)

 It was good, but I won't pay for that again. I'll just take my chances at getting a Fast Pass with the rest of the masses. I get points though for trying something new. Anyone who knows me knows I don't like to try foods out of my comfort zone.

Monte Cristos

This is a Baker MUST. Actually, I've never had them at Disneyland. But this is where Melanie discovered them and this is the recipe we have. We had reservations at the Cafe Orleans in New Orleans Square. 
They were pretty tasty, but they weren't any more amazing than the ones my sister makes. So I can say I've eaten them at the Park, now I don't have to get them again. They were a little on the not-so-cheap side. That Cafe had some pretty amazing looking Beignets though so I might go back just for those.

Snow White Apples

It was my turn to watch the sleeping baby while Trav & JaNeil took DJ on Casey Jr. So Oren and I sat across from the ride at the Village Haus (Fantasyland). I went in just to get some water, but this apple was calling my name.

Seriously, it was the biggest Delicious apple I've ever seen in my life. I had no intention of paying $3 for one apple... but the longer I stood in the line, the more it called to me. I HAD to have it. I've always called them "snow white apples" and just sitting outside her ride- what could be more appropriate?

When he got off Casey Jr, DJ decided to have an apple too. Luckily his mom was smart enough to bring some with her instead of paying out the nose for one.


I've never seen these in the park before. I know they've been there because others have talked about them. I was wandering California Adventure and saw someone eating one and thought I should give it a go.

I found this one just at a little cart outside Muppet Vision 3D (Ok, I really just wanted a reason to mention the Muppets) but I also saw a cart in Adventureland and I think I saw one on Paradise Pier.
It was freaking divine! I will be getting this again! It's a new Bakeshow Disneyland staple!

Black Forest Cupcake

The day I bought the apple at Village Haus, I also saw this next little number in a cooler. It looked delicious enough to bring me back.

It was ok. I forgot though that Black Forest involves cherries. I *hate* cooked fruit. I ate the mediocre cupcake and whipped cream (the chocolate curls on top were the best part) and picked out the cherries. I had a picture of the finished product with the rejected cherries strewn about, but I must have deleted that one. D'oh!

Tomorrowland Cheese Burger and Fries

I wasn't much in the mood for another burger, but I was overruled on the pizza and we ate at the Tomorrowland Terrace. It was just a regular ol burger- but for some reason it was world's better than the one at hungry bear. And the fries were regular ol fries so I quite enjoyed this lunch.

Chocolate Parfait

This little beauty I found at Tomorrowland Terrace. It's probably a good thing I didn't find this until the last day. I would have gone back for at least one every day.  It was so freaking amazing! It was layers of chocolate mousse, whipped cream and Oreo crumbs and a chocolate Mickey on top.

I was gracious enough to share a bite with everyone. That shows how much I love the people I was with. Because it was four bites of loveliness that I could have had. How nice am I? I will never share again.