Tag Archives: Epcot

FastPass+ Anticipation

We head to Walt Disney World in just 65 days. This means I’m just five days away from scheduling our FastPass+es. We are choosing kid friendly rides so the grandkids can go on them. Rides/attractions like Dumbo the Flying Elephant and Peter Pan’s Flight, Na’vi River Journey and Festival of the Lion King, Frozen Ever After and The Seas with Nemo and Friends, Toy Story Mania and Voyage of the Little Mermaid.

I sure hope we get them all. Although my favorite thing for this trip will be sitting in the same general area as Mike, the kids, their spouses and the grandkids. What a joy it will be! I’m especially looking forward to hanging out at the pool together at Disney’s Old Key West Resort. Ahh… Instant stress relief.

Meet you at the Kingdom.

Donna

2018 EPCOT Food and Wine Festival Choices

Since it’s only 68 days until our trip to Walt Disney World in October, I’ve decided to investigate the 2018 EPCOT Food and Wine Festival offerings. I ordered the Disney Food Blog’s DFB Guide to the 2018 EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival by AJ Wolfe and the DFB Team. I cannot recommend this resource enough! It is so comprehensive and contains more information than one can possibly need. Two thumbs up, for sure!!

After much investigation and elimination, (I mean, how much food can one person take in at one festival?) I’ve come up with the follow list for Mike and me. We will share all plates, which are quite small in general.

  • Wine & Dine Studio-Butternut Squash Ravioli
  • Active Eats-Loaded Mac and Cheese
  • Hawaii-Kahlua Pork Slider
  • Refreshment Port-Beef Brisket Poutine
  • Canada-Canadian Cheddar Cheese and Bacon Soup served with a Pretzel Roll
  • France-Crème Brulee
  • Belgium-Belgian Waffle
  • Hops and Barley-New Brunswick Slider
  • Germany-Roast Bratwurst in a Pretzel Roll
  • Brazil-Crispy Pork Belly with Black Beans, Tomato and Onions

If we choose to attend the festival more than one day, than we’ll save some of the above for the second day and perhaps add:

  • Canada-Le Cellier Wild Mushroom Beef Filet Mignon
  • Italy-Cannoli
  • Ireland-Roasted Irish Sausage

That’s a lot of choices, but like I said portions are small, and Mike and I will split everything. It’ll be just enough to get a taste of each item.

I also found in the DFB Guide to the 2018 EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival a Vegetarian Crawl. We have three vegetarians in the family so I thought it was worth a look. Here’s what they suggest:

  • Chocolate Studio-Sweet Dark Chocolate Raspberry Tart with Whipped Cream
  • Earth Eats-IMPOSSIBLE “Burger” Slider with Wasabi Cream and Spicy Asian Slaw on a Sesame Seed Bun
  • Active Eats-Active Eats Energy Bar Bites: a mixture of Chocolate, Nuts, Dried Fruit and Dates
  • Cheese Studio-Maple Boursin Cheesecake with Maple Bourbon Cream, Caramel and Pecan Crunch
  • India-Warm Indian Bread with Pickled Garlic, Mango Salsa and Coriander Pesto Dips
  • Greece- Vegan Loaded Greek “Nachos”: Pita Chips, Meatless Sausage Crumbles and Vegan Tzatziki
  • Ireland-Warm Irish Cheddar Cheese and Stout Dip with Irish Brown Bread
  • Belgium-Belgian Waffle with Berry Compote and Whipped Cream
  • Africa-Spicy Ethiopian Red Lentil Stew with Vegan Yogurt and Quinoa
  • Brazil-Pao de Queijo: Brazilian Cheese Bread

Not bad, if I do say so myself.

We are going to have a lot of fun at the 2018 EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival!

Meet you at the Kingdom.

Donna

Fastpass+

Hiya all,

Just 71 days to go until our trip to Florida. On August 21st, we can book our FastPass+es. These passes let you skip the long lines and ride/take part in three attractions much more quickly. Only so many Fastpass+es are available per day. Our travel agent will attempt to schedule our Fastpass+es for us. Better her than me! The last time I scheduled, them my palms were all sweaty and my heart was racing by the time I was done.

I picked Fastpasses that the grandbabies can take part in. These are the ones we hope to get:

Sunday, October 21-Magic Kingdom– FastPasses—The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, Peter Pan’s Flight, Under the Sea-Journey of the Little Mermaid

Tuesday, October 23-Animal Kingdom– FastPasses—Na’vi River Journey, Kilimanjaro Safaris, Festival of the Lion King

Wednesday, October 24-EPCOT– FastPasses–Frozen Ever After, The Seas with Nemo and Friends, Turtle Talk with Crush

Thursday, October 25-Hollywood Studios– FastPasses–Toy Story Mania, Frozen Sing-Along, Voyage of the Little Mermaid

Saturday, October 27-Magic Kingdom– FastPasses—Dumbo the Flying Elephant, Jungle Cruise, Meet Mickey at Town Square Theater

Wish us luck. Meet you at the Kingdom.

Donna

 

Reason and Raving

After much deliberation I have decided to keep the name of my blog as Donna’s Destination Disney.  Here are the reasons why:

  • As a member of the Disney Vacation Club, I plan/hope to get to a Disney destination every three years.  In 2015, I went to Walt Disney World for 8 glorious nights in October. In 2012, I went to Disney World for a week in December. In 2018, Lord willing and the creek don’t rise, I hope to go to Disneyland Paris for 5 nights with the family in September.
  • The thought of visiting and walking around a Disney destination is great motivation for me to eat well and move more.
  • I am a mega Disney fan, so from time to time, I will post Disney related info, like…

Frozen Ever After and the new Soarin’ opened this week at EPCOT.  The wait for Frozen Ever After is over 3 hours long as I type this.  Holy cannoli!! I can hardly wait to ride those rides, yet there is no way I would stand in a three hour line to do so.  Geesh! What an exciting time at the Disney parks what with Shanghai Disney opening this month, too.

Now on a more serious note: the senate today voted down 4 pieces of legislation that would make it tougher to mass-shoot Americans.  Shame on them!!  I really do believe that those who voted down this legislation are representing the NRA, NOT their own constituencies.  Election time is coming and it’s time to take a stand voters; these NAY voters on this legislation have to go!

I believe in the right to bear arms. I do. If you need a pistol to feel safe in your own home, I have no problem with that. If you hunt and need a specific rifle to get it done, I have no problem with that. [I am a carnivore, too. ;)] But enough is e-bloody-nough! These assault rifles should not be readily available. And if you are on the terrorist watch list or the no fly list, you should have a hard time purchasing a gun. That just seems like common sense.

Thanks for letting me get that out of my system.

I am striving to eat better by planning our menus and by trying out HelloFresh, a home meal-delivery service.  Here’s what they say on their website:

1. We create amazing recipes. Each week our chefs create amazing recipes for you that are easy to prepare. Our meals are interesting yet simple. And we ensure that your diet is balanced and varied.

2. We do the shopping for you. Tired of wasting time at the grocery store? We do it all for you; from creating the recipes and planning the meals, to grocery shopping and even delivering all of the pre-measured ingredients right to your door!

3. Free Delivery! We deliver everything straight to your door, so you can skip the trip.

4. You prepare delicious meals in your own home. We are More Than Food. Quick and easy recipes, no fancy equipment or techniques, and no obscure ingredients. Our mission is to help you get nutritious and delicious meals on the table.

Sounds great, right? I’ll let you know what I think in a few weeks.  I am expecting my first delivery tomorrow.  I ordered 3 meals per week. I figure this will help us to try some new and interesting recipes for awhile.

As for exercise this week: I only made it to the Rec center on 2 days last week, but I did move around a lot more at home.  My walking buddy hurt her back, so she can’t come with me for awhile.  It’s so difficult to get myself up and out without her to hold me accountable. However, “I am responsible for me. I need to be the change I want to see.  I need to get up and walk.” Hmmm…not a bad mantra.

Today I got up and emptied out my closet, because there is a leak in our air conditioner in the attic and the entry to the attic is through my closet ceiling. The leak is bad enough that there is water pouring into our guest room.  Yuk! I think I walked a mile back and forth with all my stuff: clothes, books, pictures, memorabilia, etc… I was sweating like I’d had a full body workout, and now I have the aches and pains to prove it.  My walking for today will be a run to the grocery store to finish out our week of grocery needs.

Then we need to batten down the hatches, because the weather is supposed to get ugly all day tomorrow, thunderstorms, possible tornadoes and much heavy rain. Help me, Jesus!

That’s about it for today.  Thanks for reading and following me on this journey of my senior-citizen life.  You, dear reader, are precious to me.

Donna

PS: I am LOVING the Grandma gig! My grandbaby Ida is so amazing! I can hardly wait to hold her again. She’s already 4 and a half weeks old. She has a head of beautiful dark hair. She likes to hear singing (especially her mama’s voice). She’s learning so much everyday. *happy sigh* My heart is so full, as I see pictures of her growing. I am so very thankful!

Fastpass+ Frustration!

Day 424  in my fuming frustration on the way to meeting Mickey (6 days to go)

OK, so here’s the deal.  I got online at 11:00 pm last night (midnight EST) and attempted to select my FastPass+ choices for our December trip to Walt Disney World.  We are staying at Disney’s All Star Sports Resort for three nights.  Now the Disney spiel says that if you are staying on property, then you can book your FastPass+ choices 60 days in advance of your check-in date.  Since today is 60 days from our check-in I went for it.  It would only let me select Fastpass+ choices for two days, instead of three.  Man!  I was so frustrated!  So I called Disney today, and I was told that I had to purchase park tickets in order to book FassPass+.  And the nice lady that I spoke with said, “Im surprised it let you book any days without purchasing tickets!”  Now that is not at all clear on the Disney website.

Here’s what undercovertourist.com has to say about it: “FastPass+ is Disney’s reservation system that allows guests to book advance reservations for experiences and attractions in the park. Guests staying at a Walt Disney World Resort hotel can make FastPass+ reservations up to 60 days in advance of check-in for their entire length of stay, while guests staying offsite can make reservations up to 30 days in advance of each day of their theme park visit. “

See? It says nothing about it being tied to ticket purchase.  Sheesh!

Anyway today I ordered our park tickets and now we have Fastpass+ in place for three days.  Here’s what we got:

  1. December 6–Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular!, Voyage of the Little Mermaid, Fantasmic!
  2. December 7–Living with the Land, Spaceship Earth, Journey Into Imagination with Figment
  3. December 8–The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, Mickey’s PhilharMagic, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train

Whew! Mischief managed.  Meet you at the Kingdom!

Pressing On

Day 411 in sweating it out to meet up with Mickey (19 days to go…only 19!!!)

Why is it so difficult to do the right thing?  I woke up early this morning to walk.  This is my fourth day in a row to do so.  Hardly earth shattering, right?  I swear, it was such hard work today.  I tried visualizing walking toward Cinderella’s Castle at Magic Kingdom.  No good.  I tried changing locale and visualized walking down Hollywood Boulevard toward The Great Movie Ride at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  No good.  So I imagined walking from the bus stop toward Spaceship Earth at EPCOT.  Nope!  It was just exhausting.

BUT, Dear Readers, I did manage to push on and even walked a little farther than yesterday.  I was listening to Sabrina Carpenter on my iPhone, who is on the Disney Channel show Girl Meets World.  She has a song called The Middle of Starting Over which seems to be my anthem (my jam) just now.  I know the song is about falling in love, but it is so catchy and has such a great hook that I cannot resist it.  🙂  And with this exercise thing, post cancer diagnosis and treatment, I am in the middle of starting over.

So I will not be discouraged.  I will not stop my daily walks.  (Lord, willing and the creek don’t rise!)  I will persevere, for in only 19 days we fly to Orlando and our lovely time share at Disney’s Old Key West Resort.  I hope to get the chance to take a swim that first evening.  It would be bliss!

Why is it so difficult to do the right thing?  Because it just is, or as my mom would have said to me, “Do it because I said so!”  Please pray for me to have the stamina to see it through, Friends.  Meet you at the Kingdom!

December Dining

Day 400 in my planning my way to meeting up with Mickey

Today’s plan was to book some dining reservations for our December trip to Walt Disney World.  Here’s what the plans are:

  1. December 6–Dinner at The Hollywood Brown Derby and a leisurely afternoon and evening strolling around Disney’s Hollywood Studios and taking in the Osbourne Spectacle of Lights and perhaps Fantasmic!
  2. December 7–Dinner at Rose & Crown Pub at EPCOT followed by Candlelight Processional.  And an afternoon and evening of EPCOT touring.
  3. December 8–An early dinner at The Wave…of American Flavors at Disney’s Contemporary Resort followed by Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Magic Kingdom.  I would have liked to have dinner at Magic Kingdom, but there is not one available reservation for that afternoon/evening.  However, I have a soft spot for Disney’s Contemporary Resort, so I’m happy to have an excuse to visit there.

What a fun day this has been!  Meet you at the Kingdom!

Top 10 Things I Am Excited To Do at Walt Disney World

Day 386 in my excitement on my way to meeting up with Mickey

Here are the 10 things I am the most excited about for our trip to Walt Disney World in October:

#10 Riding it’s a small world.  It is my favorite ride!!

#9 Celebrating one year’s-worth of birthdays with “the dip” (see below) and birthday cupcakes.  We have been saving up to celebrate our birthdays together in Florida.  Woo hoo!  Happy birthday to us!

#8 Exploring EPCOT’s Food and Wine Festival.  Looking forward to tempting tidbits of tasty treats.

#7 Experiencing Wishes Fireworks Dessert Party for the first time ever.  See comment from number 8.

#6 Spending the better part of a day at Disney Springs exploring and shopping.

#5 Eating at Olivia’s Café at Disney’s Old Key West Resort. This is by far my favorite restaurant at Walt Disney World.

#4 Experiencing Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween for the first time ever.  I have my costume now.  I ordered it from the Disney Store.  I will wear a Mickey Mouse Skeleton Tee and a Minnie Mouse Ears Headband.  🙂

#3 Spending plenty of resort time and pool time at Disney’s Old Key West Resort.  It is, seriously, my Happy Place.  When I’m chilling at Old Key West I can actually feel all stress leaving my body.  It is the ultimate in relaxation for me.

#2 Meeting and greeting Mickey at Magic Kingdom. This has been the driving force behind this blog.  I am anxious to shake Mickey‘s big, white-gloved hand and get a picture.

And the #1 thing that I am excited about…Looking at the faces of my husband and children and their spouses and spending some quality time together in this beautiful place.  This will be a family reunion extraordinaire!

Meet you at the Kingdom!

*The dip: In a pie plate spread 8 oz. of cream cheese.  Next sprinkle 6 to 8 cut-up green onions on top.  Then spread a can of No Bean chili on top.  (We usually make a second dip with Vegetarian chili with lots of beans.)  Finally sprinkle 8 oz. of grated cheddar cheese on top.  (We prefer sharp cheddar.  The shaper the better.)  Microwave for five minutes and serve with your favorite chips.  (We usually heat it in the oven t 350 degrees for 30 minutes instead, because it seem to hold it’s heat longer.)

 

 

 

 

FastPass+ or Slow, Frustrating Pass?

Day 369 in my planning my way to meeting my pal Mickey

Today’s plan was put into motion at 11:01 pm Central Standard Time last night.  That’s when my Walt Disney World vacation became only 60 days away.  Disneyphiles will know that because I am staying at Disney’s Old Key West, a Walt Disney World resort,  I at that moment became eligible to schedule our FastPass+ picks.  (For those not in the know: FastPass+ is a system that lets you basically preregister for attractions and shows.  it allows you re sign up for three a day.)

If I hadn’t gone to the gathering to show love and support for a friend yesterday, I wouldn’t have realized that this was the case.  I would have gotten up at 6:00 am CST this morning and gone online to schedule FastPass+.   But a church friend who was there is going to The Happiest Place on Earth at the end of September and she made me aware of this particular fact: the system updates at midnight Eastern Standard Time which is 11:00 pm where I live,  (Thank you, Ann!)  So I started my scheduling at 11:01 pm and I finished at about 1:35 this morning.  zzzzzzzzz

Here’s my one gripe: even getting on it as early as I did, I could not get FastPass+ for Seven Dwarves Mine Train nor Toy Story Mania.  Argh!  Something is seriously flawed with the system…SERIOUSLY!  That is so-o-o-o-o frustrating!!

But even at that, I am very pleased with the selections we have.  Here they are:

FastPass+ for the Jarvi/Carmichael Clan

Wednesday, October 14, 2015 – Magic Kingdom® Park

  1. Peter Pan’s Flight®—9:15 AM – 10:15 AM
  2. Big Thunder Mountain Railroad®—10:15 AM – 11:15 AM
  3. Under the Sea ~ Journey of The Little Mermaid—11:35 AM – 12:35 PM
  4. I’M VERY DISAPPOINTED THAT WE COULDN’T GET SEVEN DWARVES MINE TRAIN.

Thursday, October 15, 2015 – Disney’s Hollywood Studios®

  1. Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster® Starring Aerosmith—11:35 AM – 12:35 PM
  2. Voyage of The Little Mermaid—12:35 PM – 12:50 PM
  3. Muppet*Vision 3D—1:45 PM – 2:45 PM
  4. WE REALLY WANTED TOY STORY MANIA.

Saturday, October 17, 2015 – Epcot®

  1. The Seas with Nemo & Friends®—9:00 AM – 10:00 AM
  2. Test Track® Presented by Chevrolet®—10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
  3. Spaceship Earth—11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
  4. SERIOUSLY, WE CAN’T PICK TEST TRACK AND SOARIN’???

Sunday, October 18, 2015 – Disney’s Animal Kingdom® Theme Park

  1. Kilimanjaro Safaris®—11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
  2. Festival of the Lion King—12:30 PM – 12:50 PM
  3. Finding Nemo – The Musical—3:30 PM – 3:50 PM
  4. I COULDN’T GET DINOSAUR IN A TIME THAT WORKED FOR US.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015 – Disney’s Hollywood Studios®

  1. The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror™—10:05 AM – 11:05 AM
  2. Star Tours® – The Adventures Continue—11:50 AM – 12:50 PM
  3. Beauty and the Beast-Live on Stage—1:30 PM – 1:50 PM
  4. ONCE AGAIN…WE REALLY WANTED TOY STORY MANIA.

I think we’ll get the chance to ride Seven Dwarves Mine Train at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party.  At least I hope so.

So that’s how it all shakes out, Dear Readers.  I am so excited; we are 1 month and 29 days away from out trip.  Woop, woop!

Meet you at the Kingdom!

 

Fuel and Motion

Day 367 in my determination to reach Mickey in a healthier state (2 months and 1 day to go)

Today’s plan was to begin again: to eat healthier meals and snacks and to move more.

  1. I picked the best foods available to me today.  For instance, for lunch I had a Boca veggie burger, some mini-carrots and some grapes.  At dinner I made sure to include a salad of greens with our chicken and boiled carrots.  My snacks today: an banana and a Greek yogurt.
  2. Moving more was easy.  While I was away over the last five day, my office was carpeted.  So today I moved things back into my office, not all at once, but every hour I walked down to the storage area and moved a few more things back into my office.

I am tired and a bit sore, but it was a good work day.  AND I slept so much better last night.  Halle-J-lujah!  I am one grateful woman tonight.  I stayed sugar-free today, too.  I am going up to bed to fall asleep and dream sweet Disney dreams: Mad Tea Party, Journey of the Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast: Live Stage Show, Spaceship Earth, Festival of the Lion King and my very fave, it’s a small world.

Meet you at the Kingdom!