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Old 03-10-2013, 04:48 PM   #31
emmebear
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Originally Posted by jedijill
Wow, the Korean food looks better than the Disney food. I love Bulgogi...I should go get some this week.

Jill in CO

I agree! I wish I could bring my mom to Disney on every trip as she's a fantastic cook. I'd save a ton of money on food!
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Old 03-10-2013, 09:25 PM   #32
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i totally wish there was a disney rewards program! that would be so awesome.

Disney hotels are outrageous especially since you spend so little time in them. I've gotten great rates on values with my AP discount ($69 for all star movies & pop) but for the most part, they are crazy expensive & small. We splurged on port Orleans royal guest bedroom as Rachel & I are splitting it but its expensive still...however, might as well experience it once, right?

Lately, I've been staying off site & have lucked out on Hotwire & VRBO as I have a car & the hotel is just minutes away. Sometimes I will get free parking (depending on the mood of the parking ticket cashier) but I don't mind paying the $14 as I save $$ & time with staying offsite & using my car. I love the freedom of just getting in my car to leave whenever I want. I did the buses once & it wasn't for me.

My dad is diabetic so we will be cooking in our condo at bonnet creek. I booked that listing using VRBO & saved a bundle. My stay in the 2 BR presidential suite/condo is cheaper than my stay at port Orleans by $300. That's nuts!

The trip with Rachel is going to be outrageously fun! Emme talks about her all the time. I am so excited for it. I'm trying to convince her to cruise with us...I'm a Disney pusher..,haha!

Thanks for reading along & the wonderful comments about my family. I am truly blessed & forever grateful.
If you have an annual pass ...... you get free parking regardless of where you stay. Just show them your pass and you won't have to pay
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Old 03-10-2013, 09:31 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by jecskc View Post
If you have an annual pass ...... you get free parking regardless of where you stay. Just show them your pass and you won't have to pay

actually, that's not true. i have a seasonal AP and parking is not included. i think free parking is only included with premium AP.

there are times when the CM's don't care and will let me park for free. that happened this weekend when we were going to epcot.
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Old 03-10-2013, 10:38 PM   #34
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actually, that's not true. i have a seasonal AP and parking is not included. i think free parking is only included with premium AP.

there are times when the CM's don't care and will let me park for free. that happened this weekend when we were going to epcot.
Ah, I didn't think about the seasonal one. We had the regular AP and they always let us through. We have DVC now, so we always stay on property so I never have to think about it any more.

Looking forward to more of your amazing food photos and your absolutely precious little girl. Sooooo cute !!
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Old 03-10-2013, 10:59 PM   #35
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updated 3/10/13


PRINCESS STORYBOOK DINING @ AKERSHUS






after a rough night of sleep, we were all running late for breakfast @ akershus. both my mom & emme were sick & my dad forgot to bring his insulin. needless to say, we were super late getting to our ADR. it's not how i envisioned starting our disney trip together but we finally made it at 11am. i know the rush in getting to epcot really affected our moods & i felt bad for my parents as they were trying to keep up with me & a jogging stroller.

we didn't have to wait very long & i then realized that there were other people eating after us...so we weren't too late.




i've never seen this belle before. she wasn't the friendliest of belle's & you can tell from emme's face that she totally wasn't feeling it.



onwards to my date with some cheesy potatoes...


i think overall, it was a hectic day at akershus. our CM was definitely frazzled & looked tired. it was the end of the breakfast rush so i understood. she took our drink orders and we all hit the cold buffet.









this would be my dad's plate. you can clearly see he's white carb deprived at home as he chose a bagel out of all the things he could have eaten. he also kind of hid his croissant behind his salmon so my mom couldn't "see" it.



and the princess processional started.






she was a very pretty cinderella.






after the processional (we had 2 during our meal), the CM brings over the food, which is served family style.









and then emme's friends came by to say hello.



ariel & a non-caring emme.






so cute!



emme really took to sleeping beauty during this breakfast.



my mom started to crack up when she saw snow white skipping to our table.







last but not least...






between the hustle & bustle of the character interaction & trying to get emme to eat, i didn't get to enjoy the first batch of cheesy potatoes. they were cold when i finally got to them. so i asked the CM if i could have a second order.


and here it is:


CHEESY POTATOES!


the larger chunks of potato were in this batch as well. the potatoes were as good as my last visit. i wanted to devour the entire thing but i could feel my mom's piercing eyes staring at me & thinking, "do you really need to eat that entire portion?!"

so, i settled for half.


speaking of my mom, here are my cute parents. this is their first trip back to disney in 20 years!



they have been married 36 years.


after breakfast was finished, we decided to walk off the breakfast and take a look at all the topiaries around epcot.

but first....



emme loves her papa.










so typically, it's just emme & i on our trips. when i received the bill for akershus (3 adults, 1 infant), i was in total sticker shock. the meal was $134.00 which included a 20% discount ($26.00) & an 18% tip ($22.00). that's a whole bunch of money for some cheesy potatoes. i'm still a bit bitter about the price for breakfast. i know it's a character driven meal but dang, $134.00. i just wasn't mentally prepared for the total.

however, emme loves the princesses & we did get a another of picture of emme & belle (again, emme's not looking at the camera) . but i think i might just give akershus a break for a few months....or until i stop being bitter about the $134.00 bill. HA HA.



up next, FLOWER & GARDEN snacks & drinks!

Last edited by emmebear; 03-27-2013 at 05:47 PM.
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Old 03-11-2013, 10:28 PM   #36
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updated 3/11/13


FLOWER & GARDEN: Part 1







after our breakfast at akershus, my family & i walked around epcot. the topiaries were absolutely magnificent! the weather also absolutely perfect for a day at epcot.


my parents were getting a bit tired & wanted to head back to the condo. but not before some pictures with the beautiful flowers.












we were late for our breakfast ADR so we didn't get to really stop & see the topiaries at the entrance.



my parents....aren't they cute??





we headed back to the condo so emme could take a quick nap. unfortunately, she did not nap & then we hopped back onto the bus for epcot. emme then decided it was time to take a nap. ha ha. this worked out great as it would give me quiet time to stuff my face at the festival! i was meeting my friend who also has a 3 year old...so together, we would be eatings lots of food, drink yummy beer & push our strollers. SCORE!


as i made my way to the world showcase, i took a few more pictures.






i love love loved the reflection in the water. the flowers were also so brightly colored...absolutely beautiful. on the next day when i took the monorail to epcot from mk, the view from the monorail looking down at these flowers was so stunning.



AND NOW TO THE FOOD!!


i was meeting my friend at the beer stand next to rose & crown at 6pm. i was early so i decided to get a bite to eat as i was starving. breakfast was at 11am & i hadn't eaten anything since.









i decided on this:


Baked Goat's Brie with Kumquat Chutney - $4.50


Baked Goat's Brie with Kumquat Chutney - $4.50


this was absolutely heavenly. i am a huge fan of brie. the brie was baked in a flakey & buttery puff pastry. the brie was ooey & gooey & very savory. the kumquat chutney was both tart & sweet. combined together, it was absolutely scrumptious. the portion was enough to share with another person & since i had no one to share it with, i ate most of it by myself. can't waste food, right? i loved this dish. it was a great start to the festival.

i was meeting two friends & my friend matt brought me an ice cold stella. i love the pours at epcot. they pour the stella right to the brim. it's a very nice pour especially for a $9.00 beer. you really get your money's worth.



ice cold stella & our friend captain hook.


....speaking of captain hook:




and captain hook is afraid of this guy:




this is my friend matt. i've known him for 8 years. he's all grow'd up now.





onwards to good ole america.




i'm not a huge bbq fan but the pulled pork sandwich was calling my name.


Pulled Pig Slider with Cole Slaw - $5.50


Pulled Pig Slider with Cole Slaw - $5.50 + Liberty Ale from Anchor Brewing Company, San Francisco, CA (India Pale Ale) - $3.50


the pulled pork slider was HUGE! i gave half of my sandwich to matt as i wanted to make room for some more food. i got the 3oz pour of the IPA & it was a perfect match with the pulled pork slider. the crunch of the cole slaw was a great contrast to the pork. one small gripe: i wish the bun was toasted. the bun & the meat had about the same texture when chewing so the crust of a grilled bun would have made this an almost perfect sandwich.

my friend mike got the Smoked Beef Brisket with Collard Greens and Jalapeno Corn Bread - $6.75 & Rocky Road Brownie Mousse - $3.00 & said that everything was very tasty.




we made a stop to play some drums. max & emme had a super fun time together!



next, i made a stop in morocco.


Harissa and Lemon Confit Chicken Drumettes with Chermoula and Cucumber Salad - $5.00

when i saw harissa, i got pretty excited. finally, something spicy! but to my disappointment, this was pretty bland. the chermoula & cucumber salad was also flavorless but had a nice crunch to it. the chicken needed much more harissa. i would have been happy if they had a bottle of harissa as a condiment to add on top of the drumstick. this was a drumstick and not a drumette. it was a nice size...just unfortunate that it was flavorless.


after the delicious pork slider, i made my way to italy.


Asparagi con Aragosta all'Ortolana (Green asparagus, lobster, garden cocktail sauce) - $7.75

on paper, this dish looked like a total winner. but in actuality, this was the worst thing i tried at the festival. the asparagus was tiny & soggy. there was 2 small pieces of lobster. to make things worse, there was so much cocktail sauce that you could not taste anything else. the dish was also served cold. this was the most expensive thing i ate & i was the most disappointed.

i had linda's lobster roll during food & wine and i was really hoping that this would be on the level of the lobster roll. i guess it's my fault for having such high expectations but look at the plate of food. it tasted as unappetizing as it looked. two thumbs way down from me.

i paired this with Birra Del Borgo - Rubus Lamponi (Specialty Wild Fruit Ale) - $10.00. i thought the ale was just ok. it reminded me of very carbonated lambic with rasberry syrup. again, this was a disappointing stop in italy. i really wished i would have chosen the lasagna.



after my disappointing trip to italy, we moved to the florida fresh booth.





the three of us picked this delectable dish.


Shrimp and Stone Ground Grits with Andouille Sausage, Sweet Corn, Tomatoes and Cilantro - $5.50

this was my favorite bite of the entire night. there was 3 jumbo shrimp on top of creamy grits which had bits of corn & tomato mixed with some sausage. the sausage was not overpowering and the corn brought delicious sweetness to the spice of the shrimp. it was divine! the shrimp was equally large on all of our plates. the shrimp wasn't over cooked but it was slightly undercooked (if that makes sense). i loved this dish so much! it was very filling and for $5.50 i thought it was a total steal. DELICIOUS!!


i also ordered this:


Watermelon Salad with pickled Red Onions, BW Farm Baby Arugula, Feta Cheese and Balsamic Reduction - $3.50

another winner from my home state of florida. who knew balsamic vinegar would taste so great with watermelon?! not this girl. i love balsamic with strawberries but the combination of the pickled red onions with a bite of the watermelon & feta was an explosion of flavor. this really hit the spot! the dish was refreshing & very fresh. i could eat an entire bowl of this as a meal. very very very tasty.



i have so many more pictures to post from the festival!

...TO BE CONTINUED...
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Old 03-11-2013, 11:28 PM   #37
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Ok I'm typing from my phone but a couple of things.

I love the pic with Snow White at your table and your dad is on his phone! Typical men! Never paying attention. Lol

That bacon does look delicious. Why can't all Disney bacon be like that?

I wasn't interested in that baked Brie before but your pic of it cut in half looked so good!! We may need to split that if you want it again.

Your parents are definitely cute. I love that he is papa to Emme. Sounds like a fun night at epcot. Can't wait for our fun!!
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Old 03-12-2013, 01:56 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rachel09985
Ok I'm typing from my phone but a couple of things.

I love the pic with Snow White at your table and your dad is on his phone! Typical men! Never paying attention. Lol

That bacon does look delicious. Why can't all Disney bacon be like that?

I wasn't interested in that baked Brie before but your pic of it cut in half looked so good!! We may need to split that if you want it again.

Your parents are definitely cute. I love that he is papa to Emme. Sounds like a fun night at epcot. Can't wait for our fun!!

I will gladly share it with you! I saw that its goat Brie but it was just as tasty as Brie made from cows milk. Totally delicious!
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Old 03-16-2013, 05:06 PM   #40
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26 days until our trip in april with rachel & we return to flower & garden.

more pictures soon!
Yes we certainly will have more pictures! so excited!
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Old 03-18-2013, 10:23 PM   #41
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updated 3/18/13



COSMIC RAY'S


before i post my flower & garden part 2, here are some photos from our lunch @ cosmic rays.



emme & my dad spider-man posing!



we began our second day together @ magic kingdom. i cancelled our pre-park ADR @ crystal place as emme & my mom were sick & my dad was pretty wiped out from epcot the day before. my dad forgot his insulin back home so we were taking it easy.

it was pretty nice not to have any ADR's planned. no where to rush & i was not worried about losing the credit card guarantee if we did not show up. total freedom to eat anywhere in the park!


we made a pit stop here:









emme loves her vanilla ice cream.


i ordered the ice cream & asked if i could have it inside of a soda cup. the ice cream melts quickly & gets all over emme. however, another CM saw the order & served the ice cream in the short cup while the original CM put the ice cream in the soda cup. so they gave us both ice creams...we got 2 for 1...disney magic!



after spending quite a bit of time in the new fantasyland, we decided to eat. we had a fast pass to "buzz lightyear" at 2pm so this was the perfect time to eat. unfortunately, it as probably the worst time to eat as cosmic ray's was slammed.








i had to stand in 2 lines to get lunch for my family. it took about 25 minutes total. my daughter (if i'm lucky) will eat chicken. my mom wanted a burger & i got my dad a grilled chicken sandwich.



Chicken Breast Nuggets (8 pieces) - served with apple slice or french fries or cucumber salad $8.69





i chose the chicken breast nuggets in hoping they were better than the nuggets in the kids meals. the nuggets in the kids meal are gross. they look like mcdonald's hash browns but not nearly as good. the texture is weird & i never again wanted to see another one of those kids meal nuggets.

these chicken breast nuggets were very heavily breaded. we had more than 8 pieces but some of the pieces were very small & mostly breading. some of them were tough to eat even though i tried to get as much of the breading off as possible. i wish they just served chicken tenders instead.

the cucumber salad was cold & refreshing. the dressing tasted like it had some vinegar in it. i liked the tartness of the vinegar. i wished i could have had a larger portion though.




Angus Bacon Cheeseburger - served with apple slice or french fries or cucumber salad $9.99

the cheeseburger had a thick piece of bacon on it but it was cooked pretty well done. i added mayo, ketchup, grilled onions, grilled mushrooms, lettuce & tomato to my burger. after all the toppings, it almost made me forget that the burger itself was well done & semi-dry. plus, i was pretty hungry so it filled me up. my mom & i split the burger.



well done burger.



speaking of toppings, we had a tray full of toppings. i guess it would have been easier for me to take my actual food & put the toppings on top of the burgers but after taking the trays to my parents who had found a seat outside, i forgot to take the food with me to the condiment bar. so, i had to get creative. but our table was outside...it was such a nice day to eat outside.



a hot mess of condiments on top of lots of napkins.




Grilled Chicken Sandwich - served with apple slices or fries or cucumber salad $9.59

i ordered this for my dad & got the apple slices for emme. he didn't complain about the sandwich but my dad never complains about food. i think that stems from the korean war & being hungry for many years. he happily eats anything. i wished i would have gotten him the 1/4 rotisserre chicken meal instead of the chicken sandwich.



this is my mom wishing she was back at the condo eating korean food & my dad's happy to be eating.



one cool thing about cosmic ray's is that you can purchase mickey straws for 59 cents! it was a very cute straw (that i saw in rachel's dining review) but what a totally cheap souvenier! emme still uses the mickey straw at home with her minnie cup.



emme's happy with her mickey straw!






this is what $35.00 will get you at cosmic ray's [minus my camera]





overall, the meal served it's purpose to fill us up so that we could keep continuing our adventures at magic kingdom. it wasn't the best meal but it was enough. it was a total pain to wait in 2 different lines. i can't imagine having a larger family who wanted something from each bay.

next time, i want to try columbia harbour house. that was my original choice but my parents didn't want to walk all the way over there.



happy family after lunch.


side note: all these pictures were taken with my iphone.



up next, FLOWER & GARDEN PART 2!!

Last edited by emmebear; 03-27-2013 at 05:59 PM.
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Old 03-20-2013, 12:43 PM   #42
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I am loving your reviews and pictures!! Thanks for the tip on the Mickey straw--great souvenier for only .59!!
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Old 03-20-2013, 05:56 PM   #43
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I am loving your reviews and pictures!! Thanks for the tip on the Mickey straw--great souvenier for only .59!!

Thank you!! Straw was a total bargain!
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Old 03-20-2013, 06:48 PM   #44
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Great stuff so far! It's making me hungry for Korean food OR breakfast now. Too bad it's 11:50pm here, lol.

I'm also going to thank you for the tip about the straw from CRs

Looking forward to more from your trip. Thanks for bringing us along!
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Old 03-20-2013, 07:24 PM   #45
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you are a great review person and your photos are fantastic...I loved them all..We are going in May and am anxious for some of the food in Epcot ..
YOUR photos of Cosmic Rays look like the ones we had last May...there was five adults and two munchkins...BUT I did get the half chicken, potatoes and green beans...it was delicious...

Thanks for your great reviews and sharing ..

and sometime dont forget to do that recipe for me..
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