Disney…Not Just For Kids

As you have read in previous blogs, my family loves everything Disney……bring on the magic! And after reviewing our five-year vacation plan, we decided to become Disney Vacation Club (DVC) members in order to save money and enjoy even more of what Disney has to offer.

Our latest Disney vacation had a theme…. “No Kids”. Disney World (Land, Cruises, Destinations) have itineraries just for adults. This is your time to relax and just be a “big kid”.

It’s been almost two months since we returned from our first “no kids” Disney vacation. We went with a fabulous couple (Douggiestyle.com) who are also DVC members. This trip was designed around the Ecpot International Food & Wine Festival and the Wine & Dine Half Marathon.

Here is a look at all the fun we had without the kids…. no guilt was had by all participating;) :

Thursday:

    

Friday:

  • Enjoyed a giant cinnamon roll (Gaston’s Tavern) and Starbucks in the Magic Kingdom. We found a small and quiet cove off of Main Street USA to eat in each morning. (Must arrive at Kingdom when park opens).
  • Bused to ESPN’s Wide World of Sports to pick up my husband’s race packets for the Wine & Dine 10K and Half Marathon (otherwise know as the 19.3 Lumiere’s Challenge).
  • Returned to Magic Kindgom for a day of rides and of course, Dole Whip.
  • Monorailed to the Polynesian Resort’s  Tambu Lounge for Pork Nachos and Lapu Lapu drinks (you get a whole pineapple!).
  • Returned to the resort to prepare for our late night dinner at California Grill.

       

Saturday:

  • My husband woke at 3:30am to make the 4am bus to Epcot for the Wine & Dine 10K.
  • He returned after a successful run and slept.
  • Spent the morning in Magic Kingdom (Cinnamon rolls, Starbucks, character photos and Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom).
  • Headed to Epcot for attractions and the International Food & Wine Festival.

  

   

Sunday:

  • My husband woke at 3:30am to make the 4am runners’ bus to Epcot.
  • I woke at 4:30am to make the 5am spectators’ bus to Epcot.
  • He completed the Wine & Dine Half Marathon thus completing the Lumiere Challenge of 19.3 miles.
  • Rested all morning and went pooling around noon.
  • Arrived back at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival for more food and fun.
  • Ate dinner at Canada’s Le Cellier Steakhouse.
  • Enjoyed the private Wine & Dine Half Marathon party at Epcot. With your ticket (tickets are given to marathoners and may be bought by those in a marathoners’ party). Epcot is closed to everyone else.
  •        

Monday:

 

Tuesday:

  • Spent our last morning eating a the Polynesian Resort’s Kona Café rated Disney’s best breakfast (Tonga Toast).

 

As you can tell, Disney is definitely not just for kids. We ate, drank and just touched the surface of all Disney has to offer for adults. And we did so much walking, none of us gained a pound.

We had such a blast; and will be making this trip an annual destination each year. And next November, I will be competing in the Lumiere Challenge.

Have a magical vacation!

 

Were You Fabulous?

2016 is almost over! It is definitely a year that will be remembered. From politics to celebrities, this year has taught me to “never say never”.

Last December, I wrote the blog, “I Choose Fabulous!”. I wrote 10 ways to be more fabulous in the new year. After reviewing this list, I am giving myself a 70% (Let’s be real, who’s perfect?).

Let’s review the list…how did you do?

10. Let It Go…   This was hard. But I think I did much better not sweating the small stuff. I guess the best part of being a year older, is that drama is becoming too exhausting to care.

9. You don’t have to be perfect…..  Duh! Life is way more fun being a mess sometimes;)

8. Stay true to yourself and your beliefs, even if that’s unpopular…..   I relate this most to the Presidential election. My wish is that we stand behind our leaders and unify this wonderful country.

7. Exercise 10 minutes a day….. I trained and completed my first half marathon and continued my normal workouts each day. It takes some time, but I feel healthy and strong. And exercise is the best stress relief.

6. Be a role model…. My daughter is my world. I hope that my activities and accomplishments show her that at any age, she can do anything if she works hard.

5. Pamper yourself (and schedule annual doctor’s appointments…OBGYN/Dermatologist)…. I also took more time to take care of my skin this year with MORE SUNSCREEN!

4. Be generous with your time and skills…. This year I tried to say “yes” to more volunteer opportunities; and I learned that teachers should be paid millions of dollars. They are God’s angels.

3. Fall in love again and again….. Every couple goes through good and bad times. There are days when we can’t stand each other and others where we can’t get enough of each other. We went on lots of date nights this year and began doing more activities together.

2. It’s ok not to be liked by everyone, it’s their loss not yours…… This is also another hard thing to do, especially when you were once friends with those lost. But I love my friends and family fiercely; and true friendship is understanding and accepting.

1. You are fabulous and don’t let anyone tell you different! …… Yes I am!

2017 is here! Let’s continue to be fabulous and happy. If 2016 taught us anything, it’s that life is too short not to live everyday to your greatest potential.

The Heavens Are Filled With Stars

2016 has been quite a year! Forget politics, let’s talk stars. This year might be the deadliest for celebrities. So many have been taken too soon; but each left a beautiful legacy that will never be forgotten.

Here’s how I remember….

Debbie Reynolds – Princess Leia’s mother and the adorable woman from Singing in the Rain who not only stole our hearts but Gene Kelly’s as well.

Carrie Fisher – She will forever be Princess Leia from Star Wars.

George Michael – Wham! “Wake Me Up Before You Go Go”……

Zsa Zsa Gabor – Hollywood icon and once arrested for slapping a cop.

Alan Thicke – The dad from Growing Pains.

Joseph Mascolo – The evil Stefano DiMera from Days of Our Lives.

John Glenn – The first U.S. astronaut to orbit the Earth.

Florence Henderson – America’s favorite mom, Carol Brady from The Brady Bunch.

Janet Reno – The first woman to serve as U.S. attorney general.

Arnold Palmer – A class-act golfer.

Gene Wilder – Young Frankenstein, Blazin’ Saddles and Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory will forever be in my movie collection.

Garry Marshall – The director that gave us A League of Their Own and Pretty Woman.

Ron Lester – Offensive guard Billy Bob from Varsity Blues.

Muhammad Ali – “The Greatest” boxing legend.

Morley Safer –  60 Minutes will never be the same.

Prince – No words…but “I just want your extra time and your….kiss“.

Doris Roberts – Ray’s mother on Everybody Loves Raymond and Ellen’s mother in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.

Patty Duke – A great actress staring in the Patty Duke Show and The Miracle Worker.

Garry Shandling – The Larry Sanders Show was a staple in my house growing up.

Nancy Reagan – One of the most influential first ladies and the wife of President Ronald Reagan.

Joey Feek – Wife, mother and country music star.

Harper Lee – The author of To Kill a Mockingbird…this story is read by millions of young people each year.

George Gaynes – Of course the funny commandant in Police Academy, but also Punky Brewster’s adopted father.

Abe Vigoda – The Godfather, enough said.

Glenn Frey – Co-founder of the Eagles, but in the 80’s, his song “The Heat is On” was the St. Louis Cardinals’ theme song.

Alan Rickman – He was in so many movies loved by all….Harry Potter, Love Actually, Robin Hood and of course, Die Hard.

René Angélil – Celine Dion’s husband and manager, who transformed her into a world class singer.

David Bowie – Besides his music, he is the actor who starred in Labyrinth as  Jareth, the Goblin King.

That was just some that were taken from us this year. May they forever be in our hearts.

Rest in Peace.

 

Girls’ Disney Getaway Weekend May 2017.

Stop for a moment and imagine a weekend away from your family and responsibilities. Where would you go? Are you lounging by the pool and drinking mimosas for breakfast? Maybe you’d rather travel around the world, visiting as many countries as you can. Perhaps a dinner show with your friends is more your speed. For some, it could just mean uninterrupted time in the bathroom. What if I told you could have all of these in one weekend… And someone else has already planned everything so you don’t have to!

Girls’ Getaway Weekend, hosted by Living with the Magic Vacations, gives you the opportunity to do all of these things and more! Join us April 27-May 1, 2017 for a getaway you won’t soon forget. We have events planned for each day and you decide which things you want to come to – make it a weekend completely tailored to you! Join us for as much or as little as you want. Plus, we have a limited number of discounted hotel rooms (Pop Century, Port Orleans-Riverside, and Beach Club) and park tickets available!

Thursday, April 27

For the people arriving Thursday, we’ll be visiting Animal Kingdom during the day. We’ll enjoy dinner at Yak & Yeti (pan-Asian) before watching the new nighttime show, Rivers of Light!

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Friday, April 28

We’ll spend Friday amongst the stars at Hollywood Studios. Whether you want to ride Disney World’s best thrill rides, meet Chewbacca, or sing along with Anna and Elsa (or you’d rather let it go), you can do it all at the Studios. Plus, new this year, we’ll kick off our Girls’ Weekend scavenger hunt today! For dinner, we’ll enjoy classic Italian at Mama Melrose’s before heading to Jelly Rolls dueling piano bar, a favorite among last year’s ladies.

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Saturday, April 29

You can’t go to Walt Disney World and not visit the castle, so Saturday will be dedicated to the Magic Kingdom! It also just so happens that Dapper Days coincides with our dates. Some ladies will be dressing up in their vintage inspired best, while others plan to wear normal clothes – it’s completely up to you. That afternoon, we plan to have tea at the Grand Floridian’s Garden View Tea Room [extra cost]. After our dapper day in the park, we’ll have a rowdy time at one of Disney’s longest running shows, the Hoop Dee Doo Revue dinner theater [extra cost], with singing, dancing, corny jokes, country home cooking and unlimited soda, beer, and sangria!

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Sunday, April 30

Our final park day will begin with a priority ride on Soarin’ Around the World and a private brunch with mimosa bar at Epcot [extra cost]. In addition to 11 regions of the world represented in the pavilions of the World Showcase, spring is also time for the annual Flower & Garden Festival so there will be lots of extra gardening tip booths and unique food kiosks that are sure to keep you busy! We’ll finish the day with dinner at La Hacienda, a waterside Mexican restaurant with amazing views of the nighttime fireworks show, IllumiNations!

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Monday, May 1

For ladies who aren’t leaving until Monday, we’ll have breakfast at 1900 Park Fare to say goodbye to old friends and new.

Want to learn more? Visit our Facebook group to read about this year’s events and see pictures from last year! Be sure to mention my blog so I know how you found us!

Grab your friends/mom/sister/cousins and join us for an amazing weekend just for the ladies! Hope to see you there,

Magically Yours,

Miranda

Miranda Williams
Travel Agent, Living With The Magic Vacations
C: 859.803.2882
F:  585.351.2413
**Phone consultations available by appointment.

Chicken Manicotti

It’s been at least 5 years since I made this awesome meal…Chicken Manicotti. It’s really an easy and simple recipe (do not let stuffing shells scare you!); and the entire family loves it.

Ingredients: (if you don’t make your own marinara sauce) 1 jar pasta sauce, 1 container of ricotta cheese, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, 2 to 3 skinless boneless chicken breasts, uncooked manicotti shells, grated Parmesan cheese and shredded mozzarella

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Boil water and add the chicken breasts. After about 30-45 minutes, remove chicken breasts from water and cool. Then shred.

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  • In a bowl, combine ricotta cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning, garlic powder and shredded chicken. Then mix.

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  • Grease a 13×9 glass pan and spread pasta sauce on the bottom.
  • With a 1 teaspoon measuring spoon, stuff the mixture into the manicotti shells and lay in pan.

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  • Once all shells are filled and placed, spread more pasta sauce on top of the shells.

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  • Cover with foil and place in oven. Bake for 1 hour or 1 1/2 hours depending if shells are soft.
  • Remove from oven and sprinkle shredded mozzarella cheese on top. Place in oven and broil until brown and bubbly.

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  • Remove from oven and serve.

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Happy Eating!

Back To The 90’s

This fall, I am definitely taking a trip down memory lane….more specifically, the 1990’s. Fall 2016 fashion is reminiscent of my late grade school and high school years; and I find myself walking through stores thinking, “I used to wear this”.

However, these 90’s trends have resurrected with less of an alternative, grunge edge. They are sleek and more sophisticated…..perfect for who you are now.

Here are my top 5 favorite fall trends:

  1. Chokers – Anthropologie & Nordstrom

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2.  Plaid – Abercrombie & GAP

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3. Shoulders – Abercrombie

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4. Jumpers – Abercrombie

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5. Drop Waist Dresses – Abercrobie & GAP

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So, listen to your favorite Seattle-based band, marathon watch Beverly Hills 90210 and try on some familiar fashion.

Happy Shopping!