Friday, June 29, 2012

Disney Dining Review: Tutto Gusto!

Last weekend I was feeling a bit of Cabin Fever.  It happens whenever I have a full office week instead of traveling.  So Saturday we went furniture shopping (please, try to contain your excitement) and Sunday I decided I really wanted to go to Epcot.

Yes it was raining.

Yes that rain was being caused by a Tropical Storm.

Still, I thought it sounded like a fantastic idea, so I was off!  I have been wanting to try Tutto Gusto since it opened at the beginning of May.  So once I got into the park and secured a poncho, I made my way back to World Showcase.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Disney Dining Review: 50s Prime Time Cafe

One of the great things about living close to Orlando is having the ability to go up and meet my parents for lunch.  It's nice to see them more frequently than I have the past few years.

So my Mom and I recently decided to head up and have lunch together at Hollywood Studios...after all, it was the one park I had yet to visit!  We debated whether we should just get counter service or if we should sit down for lunch.  Well...I'm not a huge fan of the Studios' counter service options, so sit down it was!  We're both big fans of 50s Prime Time, so I checked if there were any openings and there were a few for lunch (just 2 days before.)  

For anyone who hasn't been, as suggested in its name, 50s Prime Time Cafe is set in the 1950s.  The decor matches the time frame and all the staff are cousins, brothers, sisters...some kind of relative.  And Mom does the cooking.  The drink menu is referred to as "Dad's Liquor Cabinet" (which I love!)  My Mom gets a kick out of the decor since it looks identical to the house she grew up in.  My Aunt & Uncle live there now and no joke, if Disney ever needs to replace something, I know where they can get it!  

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Future Home Part 4

We're meeting with the builder tomorrow for a pre-construction meeting.  We've officially got our permits now!  (Everybody say, "Woo!")

Geoff and I swung by the lot this afternoon and it's now framed out!

Past posts about building our house:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Time for a hair cut!

Bandit hasn't gotten a haircut since we lived in Rochester.  He was looking pretty shaggy.
Ahh! I can't see!
So we finally found a groomer.  Now he's looking very dapper!
I adore his little underbite!

Friday, June 15, 2012

I'm going to Disneyland!!

Those of you who follow me on Twitter probably already know this, but I didn't post it on Facebook (yet.)  I was looking at all the news coming out of California Adventure and thought "it's a shame flights are so expensive to California, I'd love to go and see all the new things."  Geoff and I had talked about the fact we had to use the credits Delta gave us for totally screwing up the flights for our honeymoon (you can read about that here) but we didn't have anywhere in mind.  The credits expire at the end of October, and Delta (even when asked directly) was not very clear on whether that expiration date was a USE by date, or a FLY by date.
So long big letters!
So all that led me to look on much *was* a flight out to California?  Verdict: $302.  With our credits we had 2 at $300 and 2 at $75.  So the flight would be free: CHECK.  The only real snag was that Geoff had absolutely no interest in going.  Well, the dates I was looking at were over my Mom's birthday and the one thing we could do with the credits was transfer them.  So I floated the idea out to my Mom and she was interested.  She has never actually been to Disneyland.  Last year she was at a conference in Anaheim and took people to dinner at Napa Rose, but she hasn't been to the parks.

Next on our list was a hotel.  My Mom travels a lot and has a ton of Marriott points.  So she's using points for our hotel (I'll let on where we're staying after we get back! Promise!)  A plus: Marriott has a program that if you use points for 4 nights, you get the 5th free.  So we extended our trip another day.  Obviously.

The weird thing about Disneyland is that it requires far less planning than a trip to Disney I'm currently just waiting for park hours to be released and then we'll book our dining (well, some of's not as necessary to have reservations at Disneyland as it is at Disney World!) We got 4 day park hoppers, and I managed to get them at a discount on the pre-price increase price! Woot! (From aRes Travel.) We're flying into John Wayne airport (also known as Orange County, but I like John Wayne better) and I booked the Super Shuttle to take us to and from the hotel.

So long Golden Gate!
I'm super excited to check out Cars Land and Buena Vista Street at California Adventure!  All the pictures this week with the previews and the opening are just making me that much more excited!  For dining, we know we definitely want to go to Napa Rose.  We also want to try the new restaurant, Carthay Circle Theater on Buena Vista Street.  Other than that...we have a lot to figure out!


On Monday night, after listening to all the cool stuff that was coming out of WWDC, Geoff and I decided not to wait any longer and purchased an Apple TV on Amazon.  5 seconds later...we were done.  Amazon makes it far too easy to spend money! 

On Wednesday, this little beauty arrived:

It's all set-up now.  I'm excited with what we'll be able to do with it!  

In other words: NEW TOYS! YAY!

Thursday, June 14, 2012


Last weekend we headed up to Philly for one of my friend's weddings.  It was the first time using MCO (Orlando Airport) as our home airport.  It was weird.  I'm so used to seeing the airport for the first time when I'm going to Disney! Not leaving the area!

Our trip up was uneventful, we arrived early and our bag was coming off the carousel less than 5 minutes after arriving in baggage claim -- in the Philadelphia airport.  After I picked my jaw up off the ground, we collected it and were on our way...sort of.  We collected the car (a red Prius!) and then promptly sat in traffic. At least we were reminded why we wanted to be in Melbourne and not Orlando!!

As a side note: I loved the Prius.  Right now I have an AWD SUV...which was nice in the snow belt, but a little over-kill in Florida.  When the car is paid off, I'll probably be looking for something with better gas mileage.  The Prius surprised me, I thought it would be a little weak, but I liked driving it and the gas mileage was awesome...3 gallons of gas for the entire weekend!

Geoff decided he wanted a real Cheesesteak, so we headed out to get some tasty sandwiches.

Om nom nom
I got a chicken cheesesteak as an attempt to keep it a little healthier...but really, who was I trying to fool?  It wasn't the best I've ever had, but it hit the spot.

The wedding was Friday evening, so we had time to kill during the day.  We headed to the local Wegmans (obviously) and realized that even though I thought the new Publix might be a decent's not.  It's not even close.  I seriously miss my Wegmans!  We picked up lunch and brought it to my Nana and Ba.  We were able to visit with them for a while, and my Aunt Donna stopped by as well.  It was great to visit!

Before long, it was time for the ceremony...I didn't take any pictures.  I'm not entirely sure why.  The ceremony was outdoors and it was a gorgeous day!  They seriously couldn't have asked for anything nicer.  At the reception, there were people there I haven't seen since I graduated High School.  It was great to be able to see familiar was like a mini-reunion!

Our flight out on Saturday wasn't until later in the evening, so we had time to kill.  We headed over to Plymouth Meeting (which is so much different than it was 5 years ago!) and of course hit up Chipotle...the second thing we miss most!  We then spent the rest of the afternoon window shopping, for exciting things like furniture, grills, ceiling fans and patio furniture! Woo! We're super exciting.

At the airport, we stopped at Chickie & Petes so I could introduce Geoff to Crab Fries!  Dinner of champions.
Crab Fries. And yes, most of the pictures I have from the weekend are food.
Our flight was delayed, but not by much.  When we got in, our bag was no where to be found though.  No need to worry...there was a Southwest flight coming in from Philly at practically the same time.  Our bag decided to take that flight instead.  It was a little troublesome that the representatives for AirTran at Baggage Claim immediately thought to check the Southwest flight.  I think that means they have a problem...

We stayed with my parents Saturday night into Sunday since they had Bandit.  My brother also came by on Sunday.  It's nice to be close enough to family to be able to visit on a random weekend.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Future Home Part 3

We got an email over the weekend that our house was still in permitting.  Apparently the government is taking their sweet time approving everything (the hurricane codes were changed right before we put down our deposit.)

In the email the builder said they would do as much with the lot as possible without a permit so when they do receive everything, they'll be able to hit the ground running and not have any further delays.

So I decided to swing by and see if they had done anything.  And they did!

Woot!  They started preparing the lot.  Not much, but it's a start and that makes me very excited!  The rest of the neighborhood is really coming along too.  It's amazing to see how much has been done since we put down our deposit.  I'm really looking forward to watching the progress on our home!!

Past posts about building our house:

Part 1
Part 2

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Enjoying the Florida Lifestyle.

We didn't do anything that exciting for Memorial Day weekend, but I have pictures, so I might as well share them!

Saturday was a pretty quiet day...and by quiet, I mean lazy.  Of course, we now live in Florida so even lazy days can be capped off by a pretty nice evening.  We decided to head to one of my new favorite places: Squid Lips.  Squid Lips is a seafood restaurant located right on the river next to the Eau Gallie causeway.  It's casual and everything you would expect a Florida seafood restaurant to be.

We were seated outside, but still under a covered deck.  Between the breeze coming off the water and the ceiling fans, you couldn't tell that it was pretty warm out!  Of course, I couldn't help but order a fancy fruity drink:
We both had Mahi, which was as fresh and tasty as you could imagine at a place like this!  Because we were seated outside, we could also hear the band playing over by the bar.  It was the kind of thing that reminded you why you moved to Florida.