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Old 06-29-2013, 02:10 AM   #301
PrincessInOz
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That's a great February post. How cool to see Rolly Crump and hear him speak.

Looks like you're having fun visiting the tourist sites of LA. And I would have totally knocked Ron Howard down off his bike!
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Old 06-29-2013, 08:30 PM   #302
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Sorry you didn't have a great time in Newport.

The Getty looks great. I've lived here since it was built and still haven't made my way up there!

Rolly Crump is a hoot! I got to hear him talk at a presentation he was giving on his book before it was released. He shared all kinds of funny stories. I'm glad you got to hear your first Disney Legend.

Are you two going to the D23 Expo?
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Old 07-02-2013, 01:10 PM   #303
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I am having such a great time reading this report!!! We just returned from a 2 week trip to disneyland/southern California. Our first time as we are wdw vets from georgia. And we spent some time sitting in front of the grand Californian fireplace. I thought to myself "this is where Tay and Tracy hang out" lol. So great to have visited the places I'm seeing in all your pics. Can't wait to post my own trip report!
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Old 07-02-2013, 11:55 PM   #304
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I love wandering around 3rd Street Promenade and Santa Monica Pier on the weekends! Loved your beach pics and the Getty Center! I've lived here a year and still haven't visited the Getty Center.

Loved that you got to see a Disney legend even if you couldn't get a book signed Would love the read the book on Kindle (will see about downloading it soon after I get paid). I'm looking for an apartment after living with my DS and his GF for a year now - a co-worker wants to find a place together which will save us both $$ - we are looking from Manhattan Beach area and Playa Del Rey or near Culver City where I live. You have inspired me in so many ways to venture out and see more of the area than I have - love your updates!
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Old 07-04-2013, 05:20 PM   #305
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HI! I am stopping in to let you know that although I have not been commenting, I have been reading. I am enjoying reading about your settling-in process and the exploration of your new neighborhood.

I too have moved recently and my DH and I have found a new animal park in our new neighborhood like yours. I also have a love of donkeys and I wanted to share a video I captured. Here I present an adorable white donkey baby!

Here is the link


Also, I have ready Rolly Crump's book. It was interesting and informative, and it was nice to get another point of view on early Disneyland history. I am really looking forward to Marty Sklar's that is coming out in August!
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Old 07-05-2013, 02:22 AM   #306
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PrincessInOz View Post
That's a great February post. How cool to see Rolly Crump and hear him speak.

Looks like you're having fun visiting the tourist sites of LA. And I would have totally knocked Ron Howard down off his bike!
It was definitely cool to hear Rolly. He seems like a really interesting guy!

We have been enjoying seeing some of L.A. every now and then. Still so much more to explore! Tracy and I literally laughed out loud at your suggestion to knock down Ron Howard. Why didn't we think of that??

Quote:
Originally Posted by franandaj View Post
Sorry you didn't have a great time in Newport.

The Getty looks great. I've lived here since it was built and still haven't made my way up there!

Rolly Crump is a hoot! I got to hear him talk at a presentation he was giving on his book before it was released. He shared all kinds of funny stories. I'm glad you got to hear your first Disney Legend.

Are you two going to the D23 Expo?
While not great, our time in Newport was still decent. We're excited to go back on a less crowded day sometime.

The Getty is definitely worth a visit if for the views alone. It was beautiful!

That's cool that you got to see Rolly Crump too. We really enjoyed what we got to hear of his stories. We're pretty sure we will be going to the Expo. Haven't decided if we'll do all three days or just one. Are you going to be there?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kristen1587 View Post
I am having such a great time reading this report!!! We just returned from a 2 week trip to disneyland/southern California. Our first time as we are wdw vets from georgia. And we spent some time sitting in front of the grand Californian fireplace. I thought to myself "this is where Tay and Tracy hang out" lol. So great to have visited the places I'm seeing in all your pics. Can't wait to post my own trip report!
I'm so glad that you're enjoying reading along! That's great that you made it out here and got to see all the sights we've talked about. I'm sure they were all a little better in person. Isn't the Grand fireplace just the best? You'll have to let me know when you start your trip report!

Quote:
Originally Posted by heaven2dc View Post
I love wandering around 3rd Street Promenade and Santa Monica Pier on the weekends! Loved your beach pics and the Getty Center! I've lived here a year and still haven't visited the Getty Center.

Loved that you got to see a Disney legend even if you couldn't get a book signed Would love the read the book on Kindle (will see about downloading it soon after I get paid). I'm looking for an apartment after living with my DS and his GF for a year now - a co-worker wants to find a place together which will save us both $$ - we are looking from Manhattan Beach area and Playa Del Rey or near Culver City where I live. You have inspired me in so many ways to venture out and see more of the area than I have - love your updates!
Both the Promenade and the Pier are so cool. I'd visit them anytime! You should definitely make it out to the Getty Center sometime. It was very impressive!

Hope you enjoy reading Rolly's book on Kindle. I've only just gotten started reading it finally. That's great to hear that you're going to be finding a place soon! Good luck with the apartment search!! I'm so glad to hear that our adventures have inspired you to explore around your area!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mrs. Gumdrop View Post
HI! I am stopping in to let you know that although I have not been commenting, I have been reading. I am enjoying reading about your settling-in process and the exploration of your new neighborhood.

I too have moved recently and my DH and I have found a new animal park in our new neighborhood like yours. I also have a love of donkeys and I wanted to share a video I captured. Here I present an adorable white donkey baby!

Here is the link


Also, I have ready Rolly Crump's book. It was interesting and informative, and it was nice to get another point of view on early Disneyland history. I am really looking forward to Marty Sklar's that is coming out in August!
I'm glad that you're still enjoying reading along!

Your video is AMAZING. Both Tracy and I decided we want a baby donkey after seeing that I'm glad you've discovered a great little zoo to visit in your new neighborhood.

I need to get reading Rolly's book. I haven't had much time for reading since buying it, but enjoyed what I've read so far. I love hearing more about the parks from the Legends and the Imagineers. I'm very excited for Marty Sklar's book as well!
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Old 07-05-2013, 03:00 AM   #307
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Chapter 41
Large and Powerful Dragons: A PSA


There continued to be more stairs to climb and lookout points to discover at the Getty Center.



It was just crazy to me that if you looked out in one direction, you could see mountains, but looking in the other direction, there was the ocean!



We did a quick photoshoot since the scenery behind us was very cool. Our one wish was that we could have gone on a day right after it rained, so that there hadn’t been so much smog in the distance.





Finally, after we had been there for quite a while, we decided we probably shouldn’t leave without going to at least one of the museum’s art exhibits.

We walked into the first building we found and started looking around. Steve and I were both berated by the security guard in the room for having our water bottles out while we were inside. After apologizing and stowing them, I got yelled at a second time because I took a flash picture.



In the end, we weren’t really in the mood to appreciate the museum for its exhibits—that would have to be an entire trip in itself—so we went back outside at our first opportunity.



After a few more minutes of looking around, we decided to call it a day.



We took the monorail back down to the parking garage and went our separate ways. Tracy and I started to head south, though we stopped on the way in Culver City to eat at Qdoba. There aren’t any in O.C., and we had been craving our favorite chips and queso.



A few days later, we decided to take another trip to Downtown Disney.

It happened to be when they were celebrating Chinese New Year with lots of different Asian presentations at the stage by Earl of Sandwich. We had been craving the Earl, and Tracy’s birthday coupon for a free sandwich was about to expire, so we went there for lunch.

While waiting for our food, the show that was going on featured a large Chinese dragon.



Since we were at a distance, we couldn’t PROPERLY enjoy the performance, but we could catch snippets of what was going on. This performance gave us fodder to laugh at for hours because the announcer who was narrating the show over the speaker just kept repeating the same thing over and over again. The dragon was dancing around the stage while the onlookers watched, and the announcer kept saying:

“Remember, this is a large and powerful dragon. And like all large and powerful dragons, he needs lots of space.”

First of all, when you are making generalizations about the preferences of a fictitious character, it already takes some suspension of disbelief, but she just wouldn’t shut up about how much space this “large and powerful dragon” needed. She must have repeated this saying at least 20 times in the span of five minutes. By the end, Tracy and I couldn’t stop laughing, and needless to say, we often jest about just how much space every large and powerful dragon needs. I guess they suffer from pretty severe claustrophobia! The more you know…

Luckily, before too long, our food was ready. Despite its availability year-round (or perhaps BECAUSE of it) neither Tracy nor I got the Holiday Sandwich. Instead, Tracy got one of her standbys, The Original 1762 (fresh roasted beef, cheddar and creamy horseradish sauce)



And I branched out slightly to try The Full Montagu (roast beef and turkey with sharp cheddar cheese and aged Swiss cheese, romaine lettuce, roma tomato and Earl's mustard sauce).



My sandwich was really good—one of the best I’ve had at Earl—but Tracy’s wasn’t great. She said the meat was pretty fatty, and there wasn’t much horseradish sauce (which is what makes the sandwich). It was so busy in there, and by the time she decided she would have wanted to send it back, she’d already eaten most of it. Instead she decided to send an email to Earl of Sandwich about her negative experience in the hopes of getting a voucher for a free sandwich at least. She wrote her email that night and never heard back. Not even a form-letter apology. So be warned, if you are ever in the scenario where you don’t like your Earl’s sandwich, complain to the manager then and there, or you likely won’t get anything to make it better.

Walking back past the stage after lunch, we were sad that the large and powerful dragon had gone in for the day… We went to our usual haunts—Marceline’s Confectionery and World of Disney. At Marceline’s, these apples they were working on in the window looked unique and very good.



One of these days, we’ll finally splurge for a Disney apple. At World of Disney, we saw these new magnets that we really need to get someday.



Before we called it a day, we headed back to the Disneyland Hotel.



We wandered around for a few minutes in the beautiful wedding pavilion area.



Next, we saw another Disneyland Cat hanging out in the bushes!





That whole area of the Disneyland Hotel is so pretty. It seems like an awesome place for a wedding.







One of our main goals for the day had been some pin trading, and we had successfully acquired a few fun new ones. My goal going into our pin trading expeditions at Disneyland was to take photos of all the new pins we got each day. I took a picture this one time, and I don't think I've ever done it again... The best laid plans...



Continued in Next Post
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Old 07-05-2013, 05:17 AM   #308
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While I like to look at the candy apples I've never had the desire to buy one, but those cherry and chocolate covered ones look amazing! Now those I would buy, even just to eat the coating on them!

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Old 07-05-2013, 07:19 AM   #309
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I'm with Luisa about the cherry and chocolate coating.

But I would buy a candy apple anyday, anyway.


Love the picture of you and Tracy with the hotel in the back. I was most intrigued to see the large and powerful dragon. What other Chinese New Year celebration "items" were there?
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Old 07-08-2013, 04:34 AM   #310
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I've really enjoyed reading so far, you have a real knack for writing
Can I ask how you write stuff down about your day to remember it for future posts/blogging, do you keep a journal, write it in a word doc, something else??
I am really bad at writing blogs and trip reports because I only write a few shorts notes and rely on a terrible memory for the rest!
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Old 07-08-2013, 08:18 AM   #311
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Good update. Like the look of the sandwiches, just a pity that Tracy didn't enjoy hers .

Sorry I haven't posted the bread pudding recipe, however its somewhat similar to yours. To lower the fat content, you can replace cream with 2% milk and you could try adding 1/2 cup dried fruit such as raisins and reducing sugar by 1/2 cup. I also love it with a tablespoon of liqueur such as Cointreau added to the milk & egg mixture. I use good quality bread, and have tried white, whole-meal and brioche ... all work well, just slightly different textures.

I was intrigued by your reference to the show Greek, as it is not one I have come across. I am a huge Gilmore Girls fan, so I tracked down a copy of the first season of Greek and have just spent the weekend glued to the screen . I am trying to decide if it is now worth the exorbitant cost on iTunes to download the second season!

Looking forward to your next installment.
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Old 07-09-2013, 12:51 AM   #312
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luisa View Post
While I like to look at the candy apples I've never had the desire to buy one, but those cherry and chocolate covered ones look amazing! Now those I would buy, even just to eat the coating on them!

Sent from my iPad using DISBoards
They were definitely among the tastiest-looking ones we have encountered. To be honest, though, I think we would settle for trying any of the apples. They all look really good!

Quote:
Originally Posted by PrincessInOz View Post
I'm with Luisa about the cherry and chocolate coating.

But I would buy a candy apple anyday, anyway.


Love the picture of you and Tracy with the hotel in the back. I was most intrigued to see the large and powerful dragon. What other Chinese New Year celebration "items" were there?
Definitely agree. One of these days, we WILL buy an apple, and it had better not disappoint after they've been taunting us for so long...

I'm not quite sure what else they were doing for Chinese New Year. I think there was a whole schedule of events, and they made it more of an "Asian heritage" thing rather than just China. I'm sure there weren't too many other activities that day though, because they wouldn't have given the large and powerful dragon all the space he needed!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AussieMumma View Post
I've really enjoyed reading so far, you have a real knack for writing
Can I ask how you write stuff down about your day to remember it for future posts/blogging, do you keep a journal, write it in a word doc, something else??
I am really bad at writing blogs and trip reports because I only write a few shorts notes and rely on a terrible memory for the rest!
I'm so glad to hear that you're enjoying reading, and thank you for the compliments

To be honest, everything I've written in this report so far is just from memory. When I look at the pictures, everything sort of comes flooding back to me and I write about it from there. I'm sure there are intricacies I forget, but the gist of it is all there. Once we started going to the parks, however, I'll admit that I needed to start writing things down. The days started blurring together and I knew I needed to do a better job of recording things if I had a prayer of writing about them. For that, I started a Word doc and just jot down notes each time we come back from the parks. We'll see how well that helps me soon when I get to writing about our park experiences! It's all just funny because I truly struggle to remember what we had for lunch today, but the pictures really help my memories from months ago come back strong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AussieDisneyNut View Post
Good update. Like the look of the sandwiches, just a pity that Tracy didn't enjoy hers .

Sorry I haven't posted the bread pudding recipe, however its somewhat similar to yours. To lower the fat content, you can replace cream with 2% milk and you could try adding 1/2 cup dried fruit such as raisins and reducing sugar by 1/2 cup. I also love it with a tablespoon of liqueur such as Cointreau added to the milk & egg mixture. I use good quality bread, and have tried white, whole-meal and brioche ... all work well, just slightly different textures.

I was intrigued by your reference to the show Greek, as it is not one I have come across. I am a huge Gilmore Girls fan, so I tracked down a copy of the first season of Greek and have just spent the weekend glued to the screen . I am trying to decide if it is now worth the exorbitant cost on iTunes to download the second season!

Looking forward to your next installment.
I know Tracy was definitely bummed that her sandwich wasn't too good At least her next Earl experience made up for it.

Thanks for letting me know about the bread pudding. We'll have to try it out sometime soon! I'm sure Tracy won't object to another tasty dessert!

I'm SO GLAD to hear that you're liking Greek so far! We had it similarly recommended out of the blue and got hooked immediately. That's so annoying that you can't get it on Netflix there like we can... I will definitely say, though, that the first several seasons are very worth watching. Similar to Gilmore Girls, it began to falter a little eventually, but really not until the last season. Hope that you get to keep binge-watching soon!

Hope you keep enjoying reading along!
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Can We Move Here and Be Pancho’s Handlers? A Sept '11 Throwback Disneyland Trip Report
Duffy is Going to be ECSTATIC! a.k.a. Thank God She Was Jewish - May '12 WDW Trip Report
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Old 07-09-2013, 01:24 AM   #313
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Chapter 42
Desperation Days


With Valentine’s Day approaching, we had to decide on something fun to do. We started off the morning the romantic way most couples do—with a trip to the dentist. Both Tracy and I were due for cleanings and I was having some sensitivity in one of my teeth. After doing some exhaustive Yelp searching, we found a dentist with good reviews who accepted both of our insurances. Luckily, neither of us had any cavities and he just chalked up my sensitivity to cold as being nothing to worry about. Turned out that all my fretting over going to the dentist had been for naught.

That evening, we knew that we wanted to do something exciting for dinner, but we still weren’t really in the position to be spending much money on dining out. Instead of splurging for a sit-down restaurant, we decided to hit up one of the restaurants that we kept reading reviews about but hadn’t gotten to go to yet.

Bruxie in Old Towne Orange advertises themselves as serving “gourmet waffle sandwiches.” They had fantastic reviews everywhere we looked, and their main sandwich was a Buttermilk Fried Chicken and Waffle. We LOVE chicken and waffles. It was one of our favorite things to get at a couple restaurants in NYC as well as at Sleepy Hollow in WDW. We knew, therefore, that we needed to try this place out. Further enticing us was the Valentine’s Day special that we read about on their Facebook. They were serving a limited time Chocolate Dipped Strawberry Milkshake. We knew upon reading about that special that we would have to go.

We arrived and were faced with a pretty long line, so we had some time to figure out exactly what we wanted. The Fried Chicken Waffle comes doused in a chili honey sauce with cider slaw. Both of these options sounded a little scary to us, but we decided to trust the reviews and try the sandwich out as it was meant to be. We also ordered a side of syrup to put on the sandwich. We laughed when they presented us with this little shooter of maple syrup.



Our sandwich came out, and it was delicious!!





The chicken is so good and the waffles are made perfectly. All the toppings complemented each other quite well (including the syrup). We also got some waffle fries, which aren’t pictured here but were extremely good.

Now for the milkshake.



The bottom of the cup was coated with Belgian chocolate, the shake was made with fresh strawberries, and it was garnished with a giant chocolate covered strawberry. The whole thing was amazingly decadent. We loved it.



A new favorite restaurant discovered right here in Orange, we decided it had been quite a good night. We came home, popped open a bottle of our favorite champagne, and toasted a good Valentine’s Day.



As part of celebrating Valentine’s Day (and because we hadn’t made a REAL cake for Tracy’s birthday), we decided to make a delicious cake to continue our streak of unhealthy but wonderful desserts. Here’s how it turned out.



A few days after Valentine’s Day, we headed back over to Downtown Disney to see what was new in our favorite haunts. They had just brought out some of the Easter merchandise, and we LOVED this Duffy who pops out of an egg.





Since we hadn’t in a while, we also decided to head through security and pine after the parks from just outside the gates.





We’re feigning smiles despite our yearning to get inside.



We also decided to wear our Happy Anniversary buttons for this trip because we were starting to get close to the eight-year anniversary of when we started dating. Time flies!

Hanging out in the middle of the Esplanade for several minutes, we took a few pictures of the cool compass in the middle.



Exiting the Esplanade, our desperation peaked in a way that we hadn’t yet experienced. Since we hadn’t gotten to ride an attraction here at Disneyland despite being here for four months now, we caved and decided to ride the tram for a round-trip tour to the parking structure and back.



At first, it felt almost too desperate—even for us—but it quickly just became fun. We enjoyed our little ride.





It also helped us to better understand exactly how the trams worked and where the parking structure was. This was all information that would come in handy when we actually parked there to go to the parks for the first time!



The monorail went by overhead, and we freely admitted that we wished THAT was the free mode of transportation around Disneyland like it is at WDW.



After reaching the parking structure, we crossed the courtyard and boarded a tram back to the Main Entrance Plaza. It was a fun little experiment on the whole!



Still not done with our Disney excursion for the day, we headed over to the Disneyland Hotel next. We sat in the gazebo on the grounds and just relaxed for a while.



We tried to find some Disneyland Cats, but we came up empty.

Hungry for a snack, we decided to try out something that had been calling our names for months, but which we hadn’t yet tried. We made our way over to Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen Express.



It was finally time to try some of the famous Beignets they serve there! We bought a bag and brought them over to the area of the Grand Californian by White Water Snacks so we could eat them at a nice table. Unfortunately, the minute I stepped outside the Grand Californian, I began sneezing like I had never sneezed before. Truly, I’ve never had such an intense allergy attack as I did in those few minutes. I probably sneezed well over 50 times in the span of five minutes, and my eyes were crying buckets full of tears. I have absolutely NO IDEA what brought it on, but since we know several cats frequent that area (and cats are usually out to get me) we were pretty sure it had something to do with them.

Luckily, the worst of the attack passed before too long. We were finally able to dig into our beignets.





They were so incredibly delicious! We devoured them—covering ourselves and the table in mounds of powdered sugar in the process.



After eating, we peered through the emergency exit from DCA that is located right by White Water Snacks. Again, we were so close, but we felt so far from the parks!



Continued in Next Post
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1987 - WDW Visit in the Womb * 1990 - First WDW Visit * 1993 - First DLR Visit * March 1996 - Family Reunion at Treehouse Villas * March 1999 - Family Vacation at Treehouse Villas * March 2005 - One Day at MK with Friends * May 2008 - First Visit with then girlfriend (now wife) at POP * June 2010 - Disneymoon at Best Western LBV * Sept 2011 - Return to Disneyland at PP * May 2012 - Grand Prize WDW Radio Trip at POR Royal Room * November 2012 - Move to CA to become DLR locals!

Can We Move Here and Be Pancho’s Handlers? A Sept '11 Throwback Disneyland Trip Report
Duffy is Going to be ECSTATIC! a.k.a. Thank God She Was Jewish - May '12 WDW Trip Report
We Moved to Disneyland!! Now What…? Stories from New DLR Locals

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Old 07-09-2013, 01:48 AM   #314
tayalltheway
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Chapter 43
The Calm


Back home, nothing was all that exciting. Each week, I would work every morning and early afternoon, and then we would always try to do something a little more exciting in the late afternoon/evening. If it wasn’t Disney, though, it was often just going to the grocery store or one of the local malls. We were getting to know our immediate area of Orange County pretty well.

We still bugged Crooky whenever we got the chance. We learned that we could get him to play with string, so that was one of our new favorite activities.





We also found out that Twilighty wasn’t alone among cats even on her side of the condo complex. One day, we were over there petting her and two more cats appeared out of the woodwork. Plus there were still seemingly endless ones poking out of other crevices around the area.



Despite moving further south on our various expeditions around the county, we hadn’t yet been to Irvine. Having always read about how it’s such a nice city to live in (usually ranked very high on the lists of the best larger cities), we wanted to check it out. One day, we were trying to decide on something to do and found out that there was a large ferris wheel at the Irvine Spectrum mall. We had nothing better to do, so we made our way south. Upon arriving at the giant outdoor mall, we parked and spent a couple hours exploring.

Before coming across the ferris wheel, we found this gorgeous carousel.



We didn’t want to pay to ride it, but it was cool to see all the hand-carved horses.





There were also lots of fountains around the Spectrum. I’m a sucker for kinetic water, so I was impressed.



Finally, we came across the ferris wheel. A really big one for such a random location, it was very impressive.



While we didn’t want to pay to ride this either, we made a mental note to come back sometime soon. The whole mall, while a little ritzy for our blood, was a neat discovery. We loved finding this kind of thing in our area.

Our little world was expanding, and we found ourselves almost grateful that we hadn’t been able to get into the Disney parks right away upon moving. Yes, it was torture being so close but unable to go, but on the other hand, if we had gotten passes right away, we almost certainly would have spent all of our time at Disneyland. We would have been happy with the move because of the parks, but we wouldn’t have REALLY known if we liked living in Orange County—or California for that matter. This initial period was good for us. We were able to start building a life separate from Disney. That’s not to say that our anticipation to make it into Disneyland wasn’t inching closer and closer to its boiling point.

Continued in Next Post
__________________
1987 - WDW Visit in the Womb * 1990 - First WDW Visit * 1993 - First DLR Visit * March 1996 - Family Reunion at Treehouse Villas * March 1999 - Family Vacation at Treehouse Villas * March 2005 - One Day at MK with Friends * May 2008 - First Visit with then girlfriend (now wife) at POP * June 2010 - Disneymoon at Best Western LBV * Sept 2011 - Return to Disneyland at PP * May 2012 - Grand Prize WDW Radio Trip at POR Royal Room * November 2012 - Move to CA to become DLR locals!

Can We Move Here and Be Pancho’s Handlers? A Sept '11 Throwback Disneyland Trip Report
Duffy is Going to be ECSTATIC! a.k.a. Thank God She Was Jewish - May '12 WDW Trip Report
We Moved to Disneyland!! Now What…? Stories from New DLR Locals

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Old 07-09-2013, 04:45 AM   #315
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Another nice update for life in the O.C.

I've been looking up the Irvine Spectrum Mall and the shops there. Might have to make a visit there....that carousel and ferris wheel looks gorgeous.

Nice cake and food porn. I'm going to have to ignore Bruxie in Old Towne Orange! That is just wicked!!! But I'll definitely be indulging in the beignets when I'm there in September.
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