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Park Bag Essentials!

You can get away with carrying nothing on you for a park day at WDW, since your Magicband acts as your hotel room key, your park tickets (combined with your fingerprint), and you can add a credit card/password to it so you just need to scan it and enter your pin to make a purchase. However, we are not those people.

We always carry a bag with us into the park – and we typically take turns carrying it since we only ever take one bag for the two of us. Lately, we’ve been using our Disney Vans backpacks that I found super cheap at Winners:

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But you can use any bag you’re comfortable carrying around!

Now – what could we possibly need a giant bag for? What do we keep in it? That all depends on the time of year we’re at Disney, what we have planned for the day, etc.

This list is not inclusive, and you don’t have to carry all of it (or any of it – just make your list based on your own personal needs)

  • Sweater/jacket – it cools off once the sun sets
  • Raincoat/poncho – Florida weather is unpredictable! We like having those small ponchos from the Dollarstore which we just throw away once we’ve used them.
  • Sunglasses/glasses and case – I’m blind, and need to switch back and forth between the two during the day
  • Passports – Disney has a rule where you can not purchase alcohol without a passport (unless you are an American citizen, then any government-issued ID will work). If my jacket has a zipper pocket, I like to keep the passport there for protection.
  • FuelRod – these are portable chargers that will work on basically any phone (they come with a few different adapters). The great thing about this brand is that they have vending machine-type things in every Disney park that let you swap out your charger for a new, fully-charged one as many times as you’d like (Luke and I only own one between us – my phone will be low so I’ll use the FuelRod, get my phone back up to almost a full charge, then we’ll swap it out for a new charger for Luke to use. On the day we got engaged, our phones were going crazy from all the text messages and Facebook notifications, so we ended up swapping out our FuelRod at least 5 times in one day).
  • Brita water bottle – we like this one since it has a built-in filter. Florida water is gross.
  • Sharpies – for character signatures
  • Pen/notepad – I like to keep notes of what we do during the day
  • Snacks – granola bars, fruit snacks, etc – you are allowed to bring food into the parks with you, some people bring sandwiches to save money (I like Disney food way too much to do that haha)
  • Gum – Disney does not sell gum on property – but you are allowed to have it/chew it
  • Camera/phone – If I have pockets in my pants/sweater I just hold onto these things myself, but it’s nice to have a place to put them while on rides.
  • Ziplock bags – Come in handy for water rides to stick our phones/electronics into
  • Tylenol – the parks are loud and can be quite crowded, which leads to headaches.

This seems like a long list, but most things are very light or don’t take up much space in our backpack.  I like to be prepared for anything!

January 28, 2017 – Part Two

As we were walking through Downtown Disney, we realized we were feeling a bit hungry, so we decided to go see if we could get in to the Rainforest Cafe.

After we left Rainforest, we still didn’t feel like going back to the parks just yet. Instead, we headed into the Grand Californian Hotel, and found some comfy chairs in a hallway to sit in. We were right by some large windows, so there was lots of natural light streaming in, and people were coming and going, but somehow Luke fell asleep and napped for about an hour while sitting up haha. I spent the time people-watching and checking in on social media (since the parks did not have Wi-fi at the time, but the Grand did).

Once Luke woke up, we decided it was time to go back to the park, so we entered DCA through the Grand – so convenient! I understand why people love staying there!

We walked around a for a bit, before it was time for our World of Colour dining package at Wine Country Trattoria. If you like negative reviews, you can check it out here...

After our not-so-great meal, I wasn’t feeling great (it was a pretty early morning that day, and unlike Luke, I hadn’t taken a nap). It was also a bit cold, so we decided to go to the Animation Academy building in Hollywood Land. We just sat on a bench in there watching the video on the screens surrounding the room for awhile. We could see the line to meet Anna and Elsa, and as it got shorter we decided to jump into line and meet them. I do like that you can get both of them in a picture together in California, but I thought the pair we met in Florida were a little  better (more in character, and more wiling to joke around with us).

We had never gone into the Sorcerer’s Workshop (located in the same building), so we headed there. It was kind of neat, but I find it weird how it just comes to a dead end, and then you need to back-track in order to get out.

We headed out of the Animation Building, and went to buy some matching Star Wars shirts I had seen earlier in the day (I finally convinced Luke to wear matching shirts with me, I was very excited haha). We made our purchase (and saved 15% with my annual pass!),  then continued looking around in the shops. After a few minutes, Luke realized that his FitBit was missing, and couldn’t remember the last time he saw it 🙁 We retraced our steps, and went back to ask the cast members in the stores we were just in, but no sign of it anywhere. We even walked out to Lost and Found to file an official report, but we have never heard back – it is lost forever (or someone found it, picked it up and got themselves a barely used FitBit Flex…). It ended up working out in the end – my company introduced an initiative where they subsidized the cost of purchasing a FitBit – so I was able to upgrade to a Charge for under $60, and I gave Luke my FitBit flex which was only a month old.

Once we re-entered the park we still had some time before we needed to head over to watch World of Colour, so we headed into A Bug’s Life Land and went to watch it’s Tough to Be A Bug – and no, I still didn’t sit back in the seat for the poke in the back part haha. Of course we had to go on Heimlich’s Chew Chew Train afterwards to help him search for candy corn – it’s the simplest most little kid ride in the entire park, but we find a way to go on it every single trip.

We headed over to the Preferred Viewing area for WOC, but made a stop at the Little Mermaid ride when we saw that it was practically a walk-on 🙂

We had an amazing spot to watch World of Colour thanks to the dining package. The show itself was as fantastic as always, It’s a show I never take pictures of, I just put my phone/camera away and enjoy it to it’s fullest. Of course I did snap a few pics of the Mickey wheel before the show started though 🙂

After WOC was over, we headed out of the park, caught an Uber back to our hotel and called it a night.

Wine Country Trattoria – WOC Dining – January 28, 2017

It’s been almost 10 months since this meal, and I’m finally attempting to write this report. I’ve been dreading it, trying to put it off for as long as possible. I hate negative reports, but I really don’t know if there are any positives from this meal…

We did the World of Colour Dining Package at Wine Country Trattoria back in 2015 on our first trip to Disneyland and it was great, so we were looking forward to getting back to try it again.

We checked in, and were led upstairs to an almost empty second floor. Apparently this is where all of the WOC dining package people were sitting (in 2015 we were in the regular restaurant).

We had the dining package menu placed in front of us:

First up was our drink orders. While we were downstairs waiting for our table, I was looking through the drink menu and saw that they had Fairytale Cuvee – the champagne that is included with an Escape Wedding Package through Disney Fairy Tale Weddings. We had already been discussing that as an option for our wedding (we had only been engaged for a few weeks at this point), so I decided I wanted to order a glass to try it. The waiter looked so confused, and told me he had to go ask for permission to serve me a glass of it (what? He had just told us we could order anything from the bar downstairs…) Eventually he came back with my tiny little $17 DOLLAR GLASS OF CHAMPAGNE! Ouch, I probably wouldn’t have ordered it if I had known it would be that expensive (can you tell I rarely drink at restaurants?)

Luke kept it a little easier for our waiter, and just ordered a beer of some kind (according to our receipt, it’s an  ‘Anaheim Hefewzn’ – whatever that means.). He described it as not bad, but not memorable.

Next up were our Appetizers – we could choose between soup or salad.

I went for the soup, which was a Minestrone that day. It was ok, nothing special. I’ve had better at Olive Garden. It was also a pretty small serving.

Luke went for the Starter Salad – arugula, fennel, red onion, spiced walnuts and goat cheese with a fig-balsamic dressing (the only thing I’d eat from that salad are the walnuts, and I’m not supposed to eat nuts due to my Crohn’s). This salad was similar to the one Luke had back in 2015, but it wasn’t as good as he remembered.

Then came the entrees. On our trip in 2015, I had ordered the steak option and sent it back twice to be cooked as I had ordered it (if I ask for well done, I don’t want it bleeding out on my plate). Once I finally did get it cooked as ordered, it was delicious.

I decided to go for the steak option again this time, and ordered the Ribeye Steak – served with creamy garlic stacked potatoes and roasted brussel sprouts with bacon and honey. I mentioned that I don’t like brussel sprouts, and the waiter let me know I could swap out for broccoli no problem.

The steak was fairly dry (I know, I ordered it well done – but a properly cooked well-done steak should not be dry!). There also wasn’t much flavour on it – shouldn’t they be putting at least salt and pepper or something on it while they cook? The broccoli was cold (but cooked), and the potatoes were just ok. They reminded me a bit of the scalloped potatoes I had at Olivia’s Cafe at Old Key West a few weeks earlier, but the Olivia’s ones were a million times better!

Luke ordered the Herb-Roasted Chicken Breast – served with broccolini, caramelized onions, red peppers and fettucine pasta with an alfredo sauce.

The pasta was good, but the chicken was much better back in 2015. Luke says it seems like everything was pre-prepared, and pretty dry by the time it made it’s way to us – as if it had been sitting under a heat lamp for awhile.

Also included in this dining package is a tray of desserts – Trattoria Tiramisu, European Macaroons, Caramel Chocolate Panna Cotta and Lemon Cream Puffs.

I’m not a fan of cream puffs (or lemon flavour), so Luke ate his and mine was left. I also don’t get the current obsession with macarons (or European macaroons as the menu called them…) – I ate one of these, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to buy them (I did buy a few from a cart in Downtown Disney a few days prior, and I regretted it  – I just don’t love them!). Luke told me his list of best to worst form this dessert plate would be the macaron-cream puff-tiramisu-panna cotta. In comparison, my list would be panna cotta-macaron-tiramisu-cream puff.

Overall, the desserts were fine – but the rest of the meal had been so disappointing up to that point that we were just over it.

This meal cost $46 each, and we saved $13.80 with my annual pass. Our total bill was $111.20 – way too expensive for such a disappointing meal.

The Wedding Party – Luke’s Side

Jill Antle – Best Woman

I met Jill on May 6,1984. The day she was born. She had a smushed nose.  She’s been my sister ever since. She’s bossy. I don’t remember specifically asking her to be best man. In all likelihood she muscled her way into it because that’s how Jill is. But she’s also the life of the party, extremely loyal, caring, considerate, uncomfortable with being praised like this so I’ll deviate and say she’s had my back my entire life and couldn’t be prouder to have her on my team.

When she’s not being a Best Gal, Jill can be found chilling with her tinysweetheart watching NFL action (Go Steelers!), kickin’ it on the 1s & 2s as DJ Wing Wednesdays, cooking, book clubbing, and living her best life.


Lisa Glover – Groomswoman

The unstoppable force that is Luke and Lisa was forged in the fires of conflict from mid-to-late-2000s MTV reality shows, specifically ones focused on identical twins who were into girls and dudes. Their shared passion for potatoes – even baking cakes with perogy-shaped cookies on them, karaoke and Metric shows is unrivaled. Whether it’s yelling “sports” at Oiler/Eskimo games, or saying “Woooooooooo!!!” at concerts, this cat-loving duo has been an immense force of awesomeness going back to ’05. This has nothing to with anything hut The Gaslight Anthem is a great band. Luke recently  the attendant in Lisa’s wedding to Handsome Trevor West and the reviews were overwhelmingly positive somehow. In all seriousness though – Lisa saved my life and I couldn’t be happier that she’s going to be at my side as I marry Fallon.  Lisa is one of my all-time favourite people, a pickleball champion, and I’m proud to have her in our party.


Devin Patterson – Groomsman

2005 was a very good year. That’s when i had the fortune of meeting Devin Patterson. I was new to Edmonton from then Regina. We worked at the station together and lived blocks apart. What started as Onowayan hospitality over Ugandan magic Pepsi cocktails had led to a lifelong friendship. I know I can always count on Devin if I need help. He’s as honest, hard-working, genuine and kind a person as you’ll ever meet. Fun fact: one night in summer ’06 Devin was at a wedding near my Whyte Ave apartment. He called me to come meet up. I arrive at the venue and Devin’s all the way up a tree. I call him on my cell and he says “When Chuck Norris jumps into water, he doesn’t get wet… the water gets Chuck Norris’d” then jumps down almost onto my car. It’s like midnight and we head back to my place. Devin decides he’s not ready to crash so we head out to Hudsons. Devin gives the doorman $20 and we walk right in. While inside we meet some mutual friends and he starts hitting it off with this Matthew Good fan named Larissa. A few of us head back to my place, snack on Premium Plus crackers and peanut butter, then head out onto the roof to mess with tipsy passers-by. All in all a good night. In 2010 – I was a groomsman in Devin and Larissa’s wedding. I’m so happy the tables have turned and they both get to be here for me.


Isabella Nicole Perez Antle – Flower Girl

Look at my niece! Isn’t she cute? Just wait till she’s a flower girl. Oh man. So much damned cute!!!

Budget Friendly Disney Eats!

Look, we know Disney is expensive. Just because we’ve made all those dining reservations does not mean you need to join us for them – but you’re still going to want to eat haha. We decided to put together a list of some great options we’ve tried (or trust the opinions of people who have tried) that might be little easier on the wallet…

Magic Kingdom

  • This list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning Peco’s Bills! It’s possibly my favourite quick service restaurant at Disney (that fixin’s bar doesn’t hurt my opinion of that). It’s a Tex-Mex style menu, and you can easily get an entree and a soft drink for under $20 (we recommend the fajita platter at $14.99 or the beef nachos, $12.49), and then you load it up with all the shredded cheese, salsa, guacamole and sour cream your heart desires – you end up with a large portion!  
  • Columbia Harbour House – we have never ate here, but it always has great reviews. The most expensive entree on the menu is $15, and you can actually get healthier options (like grilled salmon, salad, etc)
  • Another place we’ve never ate at, but is talked about a lot in the Disney forums is Casey’s Corner, located on the corner of Main Street. This place is all about the foot long hot dogs – topped with chili&cheese or mac&cheese – each $10.99 (includes fries) – or . I’ve also heard a lot of great things about the corn dog nuggets ($8.49 with fries).
  • I’m giving an honourable mention to Be Our Guest (lunch only). This is one of the only quick serve locations on property to accept advance dining reservations, as it is one of the most in-demand places to eat. We actually do have a reservation made for 20 people on January 9th for lunch, and you’ll be pleased to know the most expensive entree is $17 (the braised pork – which I highly recommend!). Soft drinks are self-serve, so you can get free refills throughout your meal as well.


  • Sunshine Seasons is the top of my list for this park based on the size of the menu. There are options for everyone – soup, salad, sandwiches, chinese food, vegan – and everything is under $15!
  • We’ve never ate there, but Tangierine Cafe in the Morocco Pavilion is always raved about. The servings are generous, and cost is under $20.
  • If you’re feeling like fish and chips ($10.99), head to Yorkshire County Fish Shop in the UK Pavilion.
  • It’s very easy to make a meal out of snacking around Epcot. Boulangerie Patisserie les Halles has very cheap French pastries, if you like coconut you’ll love the School Bread ($3.49) from Kringla Bakeri Og Kafe in the Norway Pavilion, the curry chicken pocket ($4.50) from Joy of Tea in the China Pavilion seems to be well reviewed as well. Turkey legs (~$10) are found in the American Adventure Pavilion, as well as funnel cakes ($7.99).

Hollywood Studios

  • This is the park most lacking in food options, but you can still find things to fill your belly 🙂 The Hollywood Brown Derby Lounge has a small menu that is surprisingly affordable. The actual restaurant is pricer, but you can get a smaller version of their famous Cobb salad in the lounge for $10, or wagyu-beef sliders for $17.
  • Backlot Express is considered the best quick service location at the Studios. The menu is fairly straight forward, with a few items having a Star Wars theme (like the Dark Side chicken and waffles, $10.99)

Animal Kingdom

  • Satu’li Canteen is a brand new restaurant that opened with Avatar Land in May of 2017. They offer a healthy “bowl” served with your choice of beef or fish for $12.99, or chicken or tofu for $11.49.
  • If you’re looking for a giant plate of fries, head to Flame Tree BBQ. We shared an order of their pulled pork and cheese fries ($6.49) on our last trip, and it was more than enough for us as a mid-afternoon snack.  
  • There is a Rainforest Cafe located near the entrance to the park. The appetizer menu is shareable and affordable – we shared a $20 appy platter on our last trip to California at the Rainforest Cafe located there and it was a generous portion of food.

Disney Springs

  • Our #1 recommendation here will always be Earl of Sandwich. Luke loves it – I’m not even much of a sandwich person and I’ve always enjoyed my meals here as well. They are very simple pressed sandwiches with straight forward ingredients, and cost under $7.50 each. Even if you make your meal a combo (add a drink and small bag of chips), your total will be only be a little over $10. You can’t eat on Disney property much cheaper than that! 
  • We haven’t tried it, but Blaze Pizza always seems to be loved! Who can complain about $10 pizzas?
  • D-Luxe Burger is also highly reviewed, burgers are $10-$13 with a side of fries costing about $5.
  • Morimoto Street Food is a grab and go location serving Asian-inspired snacks (Bao buns are $8-10 for 2, sushi rolls $8, etc)
  • If you’re craving something sweeter, Ghiradelli serves great ice cream sundaes, although they are a little pricy ($10 and up).

Disney Resorts

  • A lot of people seem to forget about all the options available at the hotels. A personal favourite is Saana at Animal Kingdom Lodge. This can an expensive option depending on what you order, but I highly recommend the bread service ($15). It is more than enough food for one person to make a meal out of!
  • The food options at the All Star Resorts are plentiful and affordable. I had a turkey dinner at All Star Music back in 2016 for under $11 – and it was actually really tasty! [IMG]
  • Beaches and Cream at Beach Club Resort is technically a table service restaurant and you will need an advance reservation, but the prices are very affordable! We have actually made reservations for the group on Friday, January 12th 🙂 It is an old, 50’s diner feeling, and serves up very basic fare – patty melts, burgers, sandwiches, etc. My personal favourite was the grilled cheese and tomato soup ($12.99) – honestly one of the best I’ve ever had. Also save room for dessert – giant ice cream sundaes large enough to share between 2-3 people ($7.99 for No Way Jose, the one we shared)

Honourable Mentions

  • I need to give a shout-out to Disney chicken nuggets. These can be found at select quick service locations in every park, as well as a few resort food courts. They are not your standard McDonald’s style nuggets, they are real chunks of chicken and are quite tasty! ($9.49)

January 8th, 2017 – Part One

When we woke up, the first thing we noticed was how cool it was. The temperature had dropped overnight, and we woke up to it being only +2 degrees Celsius. We weren’t going to let that stop us though, it just meant we needed to bring our jackets with us for the day.

We were up fairly early this morning, since we had asked bell services to stop by our room around 8am. We were saying goodbye to Old Key West, and would be checking in to Saratoga Springs for the remainder of the trip. Bell services was on time, and we handed over all of our luggage, just taking our park bag with us. We headed out to the bus stop, and the internal shuttle pulled up almost immediately so we jumped on that and rode it to Hospitality House. We checked out, then went to sit and wait for the bus to Epcot…and we sat and waited, and then waited some more. The estimated arrival time on the screen kept changing, and after about a 40 minute wait it finally showed up. That’s the longest we’ve ever waited for a bus, but we knew it was due to all the road closures on property to accommodate the full marathon happening that morning.

Luke’s only request for scheduling our park days was that we go to Epcot on the morning of the full marathon. His plan was to sign up for his first ever full in 2018, and he had found watching some of the race in 2016 very inspiring.

We arrived at Epcot, and it was fairly busy despite the cold temperature. Eventually, we were through the security line and entering the park. We stopped to cheer on some of the marathon runners while checking current wait times in the park. We noticed a low wait time for Soarin’, so we decided to go for a trip around the world 🙂

It was great as always 🙂 Once we exited, we realized we were kind of hungry, so we grabbed a table by Sunshine Seasons and split the Mickey Mousse we had purchased the day before from Amorette’s Patisserie.  

Once we finished our treat (who doesn’t love cake for breakfast?!), we were well within our window for our first Fastpass. You definitely do not need a FP for the Seas with Nemo and Friends, but I think it’s a cute ride and worth going on at least once each trip (and this was our second day at Epcot, plus you need to choose something from tier 2).

We then went and watched/cheered on some of the marathoners! I think this is such an awesome thing, it’s really quite amazing to see all the training and hard work these people have put in, and to see them so close to the end of their run. Seriously, if you are ever around Epcot on a marathon day, make sure you take some time to watch the race and clap for the accomplishment these people are about to achieve.

From there, we made our way over to Test Track for our next Fastpass!

We scanned our Magicbands and entered the Fastpass line, and 12 minutes later (according to the time stamps on my phone), we were designing this beauty…

I named her Alberta, after the province we live in – where people seem to love their jacked-up trucks hahahaha.

The ride was great as always (but not as great as Radiator Springs at Disneyland…)

We decided to start walking towards World Showcase, and entered on the Mexico Pavilion side. Since we had never done it before, we went inside the pyramid and saw there was no line up for the Grand Fiesta Tour! Off we went on a journey through Mexico with Donald Duck 🙂

We did not go any farther into World Showcase at this point, and instead starting making our way over to Canada for our lunch ADR. Of course, we had to stop to watch more marathoners! And I had to take a picture of the wonderful signs these ladies had made haha!

After seeing some people run by with absolutely fantastic costumes, we finally entered the Canada Pavilion – gosh it’s pretty!

We checked in, and had lunch at Le Cellier (review here).

Since we were already in the Canada Pavilion, we had to stop and ask for some of the Canada 150 Buttons they had created in celebration of Canada’s 150th Birthday this year. The cast member (who was from Regina, Saskatchewan according to her nametag) even wrote our hometowns on our pins for us (and dotted all the i’s with Mickey Heads!), and then covered the writing with a piece of tape to protect it.

While we were eating, we had decided to drop our Figment Fastpass, and were able to pick one up for Soarin’.

Soarin’ is such a great ride! I can’t believe we had never been on it prior to this trip (although it was closed for refurbishment on our only WDW trip before this one, and it was closed on 1 of our Disneyland trips as well).


Fastpass+ at WDW

First of all, what is Fastpass+ (FP+)? It is a service offered by Disney complimentary with your park tickets which allows you to select up to 3 attractions per day to experience with a shorter line. At all of the applicable rides, you will see the regular, or “standby” line as well as a Fastpass line. The standby line might be a wait of over 2 hours, but with a FP+ you should be on the ride within 10-20 minutes (usually faster, sometimes it might take a little longer).

At the 60 day window before your trip, you can select up to 3 Fastpasses in advance. Your 3 choices must all be at the same theme park, but once you have used those up on the day of, you can search for any available FP+ that may be remaining for any park (to be used that day). I believe our max was 6 or 7 Fastpasses in one day… so it can be done!

If you are staying off site, your window to book these does not open until the 30 day window. By this point, some of the most popular rides will already have zero availability for FP+ – this is just one of the many perks of staying on site at WDW.

You will be given an hour long window to use your FP+ – there is a very small time frame of wiggle room on each side of this hour (from everything I’ve head or read, it’s about 5 minutes early or 15 minutes late – which essentially gives you an hour and 20 minutes).

When you go to use your FP+ for a ride, you must scan your Magicband (see, these things are important!).  The light will turn green, and a cast member will wave you through to the Fastpass line. Typically there will be a second scan point as well, to deter any line jumpers, so keep your Magicband out and ready!

Not every ride or show offers FP+ selection. Also, not every ride/show that offers it actually requires it. Each park is different as well, as you will see below. If you click on the name of the park, it will take you to my blog post describing a little more detail about each ride.

Magic Kingdom (choose any 3):

  • it’s a small world – Fastpass is not really required, line is typically not too long to wait in.
  • Big Thunder Mountain Railroad 
  • Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin
  • Dumbo – Fastpass not required, just go a little later in the day
  • Enchanted Tales with Belle
  • Haunted Mansion
  • Jungle Cruise
  • Mad Tea Party – Fastpass not required, line is never too long
  • Meet Ariel at her Grotto – character meet
  • Meet Cinderella and a Visiting Princess – Princess Fairytale Hall
  • Meet Mickey Mouse – Town Square Theater – talking Mickey!
  • Meet Rapunzel and a Visiting Princess – Princess Fairytale Hall
  • Mickey’s PhilharMagic – Fastpass not required, you can almost always get in to the next show (so you might wait 10 min)
  • Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor – Fastpass not required, the theater is large and you’ll just have to wait for the next show
  • Peter Pan’s Flight
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Seven Dwarfs Mine Train – highly recommend getting a Fastpass for this one. It’s one of the newest rides in this park (about 4-5 years old now, but lines are always over an hour)
  • Space Mountain
  • Splash Mountain
  • The Barnstormer – Fastpass not required
  • The Magic Carpets of Aladdin – Fastpass not required
  • The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh – Fastpass not required
  • Tomorrowland Speedway – Ugh, no. Don’t waste a fastpass on this. Don’t even waste the time spent in line for this.
  • Under the Sea: Journey of The Little Mermaid – Fastpass not required

The three fastpasses you choose for Magic Kingdom will depend on the people in your group.


Epcot Group A (choose 1):

  • Frozen Ever After 
  • IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth 
  • Soarin’ 
  • Test Track 

This is a tough call. The easiest one to eliminate as your choice is Illumintions, as the show can be viewed from anywhere around the World Showcase. Are you traveling with younger girls who love Anna and Elsa? Then you might want to pick Frozen as the lines are always long. Soarin’ is one of my favourite rides, but the line does tend to be shorter than Test Track (which is also an excellent ride) – neither one of those are bad choices to be honest.

Epcot Group B (choose 2):

  • Character Spot
  • Disney & Pixar Short Film Festival
  • Journey Into Imagination
  • Living with the Land
  • Mission: SPACE
  • Spaceship Earth
  • The Seas with Nemo & Friends
  • Turtle Talk with Crush

Most of these are unnecessary to use a Fastpass on – Turtle Talk, The Seas, Living with the Land, and the Short Film Festival almost always have minimal wait times (if any). I’m a wimp and can only handle the green side of Mission:Space, so the line for that is rarely long (although if you’re a thrill seeker who likes G-Force rides you’ll want to grab a Fastpass and go to the orange side). The character spot can see long lines, since it’s one of the only places to see Classic Mickey and Minnie. Even the Fastpass line for that moves slowly. Journey into Imagination is mainly for kids, so if you are a group of adults it’s not necessary to use a Fastpass on. Spaceship Earth never has a crazy line, but it’s something you HAVE to ride while at Epcot, so we usually grab a FP for it.

Hollywood Studios

Disney’s Hollywood Studios Group A (choose 1):

  • Toy Story Mania!
  • Beauty and the Beast – Live on Stage
  • Fantasmic!
  • Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster

This group should only have 2 options – Toy Story or Rock ‘n’ Roller. Fantasmic is easy to grab as a 4th Fastpass later in the day, and Beauty and the Beast isn’t difficult to get into since the theater is large. Again, what ages are the people in your group? Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster is the only coaster at WDW with an inversion, and it does have a height restriction, whereas Toy Story is for everyone. Both rides tend to have long standby lines most of the day as well.

Disney’s Hollywood Studios Group B (choose 2):

  • For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration
  • Disney Junior – Live on Stage!
  • Voyage of the Little Mermaid
  • Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular!
  • Star Tours
  • Muppet*Vision 3D
  • The Twilight Zone Tower of Terrror

This one is always easy for us – Star Tours and Tower of Terror. You can almost always walk into the Muppet ride, and the other four options are shows with roomy theaters.

Animal Kingdom

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Group A (choose 1):

  • AVATAR Flight of Passage
  • Na’vi River Journey

I have not been on either of these, since Avatar land opened after I was last at WDW, but from everything I’ve heard Flight of Passage is one of the best rides Disney Imagineering has ever created, and should be your #1 choice for a Fastpass.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Group B (choose 2):

  • Expedition Everest
  • Finding Nemo – The Musical
  • Flights of Wonder
  • It’s Tough to be a Bug
  • Kali River Rapids – tends to be closed for refurb in January
  • Kilimanjaro Safaris
  • Meet Favorite Disney Pals at Adventurers Outpost
  • Primeval Whirl
  • Rivers of Light

I always get a Fastpass for Everest – my fav ride in all of WDW! I also usually wait in the standby line multiple times (later at night, it’s almost a walk-on). The Safari is always worth a FP+ as well. Dinosaur is ok. FP+ is not required for Nemo or Flights of Wonder.

January 7, 2017

Since the half marathon was cancelled, neither one of us had to wake up with an alarm on this day – which is one of my favourite things in the world 🙂

I believe we slept until about 10am, and woke up feeling refreshed. I actually might have slept even later…

We took our time getting ready, and ate some of the snacks we had in the room for breakfast. We had no plans until supper, and we had planned on this being our day away from the parks, so we decided to head to Disney Springs for awhile. I packed only the essentials in my purse for the day – wallet, camera, fuel rod, bottle of water and lots of snacks haha –

As soon as we arrived in Disney Springs, we realized we hadn’t actually ate any real food all day and we were hungry, so we went to make Luke happy with a stop at Earl of Sandwich.

After eating, we went to Amorette’s to check it out. They had so many delicious-looking things there, I wanted to sample one of everything!

There was also a really cute Christmas tree still up in the store, so of course I had to take a picture of it…

And of course, we did buy a few things…

We took our time, walking around the Disney Springs area. I really like how it looks 🙂

I found the Harley store, so I took this picture and sent it to my mom. Her and my step-dad own Harley’s, so she was excited about it.

After doing a bit of shopping (my mom had a birthday a few weeks after this trip), we decided we were cold and finished with Disney Springs. This day and the next were not the Florida weather we were expecting!

*Yes, I took this earlier in the day, and yes those are in Celsius*

We headed over to the bus stops, and found the one heading to the Polynesian. We didn’t wait long before we were off. This was the first time for both of us visiting this resort – wow! I really loved the feel of this place, it’s definitely on our short list for bucket list Disney hotels.

It was around 3:30-3:40pm by this point, and Trader Sam’s was due to open at 4pm. We decided to go and get our name on the wait list since it was somewhere we both really wanted to check out.

After enjoying some libations at Trader Sam’s, we headed upstairs to check in for our supper reservation – at ‘Ohana!

After our supper, we had planned on sticking around, and possibly heading down to the beach to watch the Magic Kingdom fireworks. I, however, had ate way too much and wasn’t feeling the greatest (and the same for Luke), so we decided to call it a night and called an Uber to take us back to Old Key West.

This was by far the most relaxed day of our trip, and I didn’t take many pictures at all. Sometimes, in the middle of a vacation, I just need a quiet day 🙂






Earl of Sandwich – Supper – January 27, 2017

After finally getting to meet Captain America and Spiderman, we decided to call it a night – after eating of course! We headed out of the park and over to Downtown Disney, walking until we reached our destination: Earl of Sandwich!

We had ate at Earl a few weeks earlier when we were in Orlando, and it was close to the top of Luke’s ‘must-eat’s’ while in Anaheim.

We didn’t switch it up much on this visit, and I ordered the exact same sandwich I’d had in Orlando – the Holiday Turkey: Turkey, cornbread stuffing, cranberry sauce and mayonnaise $6.99. Of course, I asked for it without cranberry – I’m just not a fan.

This was just as good as the last one I’d ate earlier in the month! I’ll have a really hard time ordering anything different on future trips – the combination of turkey and stuffing is just perfect 🙂

Luke also decided to order one of his favourites from our meal at Earl of Sandwich a few weeks earlier, and got the Hawaiian BBQ: Grilled chicken, ham, swiss, pineapple and BBQ sauce $6.99. He loved it once again!

For some reason, I also insisted on ordering one of their Pepperoni Pizzas: Tangy pizza sauce, Italian seasoning, mozzarella & pepperoni on our Artisan bread. $6.99.

This was ok, but from now on I’ll just stick to my beloved Holiday Turkey sandwich 🙂

We made both of our sandwiches into combos, which meant we each had a fountain drink and a bag of chips. The cost was an additional $2.99/each.

Our total bill came to $29.11. We did not use my annual pass – I can’t remember if we forgot about it, or if they just don’t accept it there. Either way, it’s a relatively cheap meal for something so great 🙂


Empties – February – June 2017

I was trying to do this every 4 months, but this one is for 5 months because I was lazy and didn’t want to take pictures at the end of May…and then of course it took me half of July to get around to writing this post…

The first time I documented my empties was back in September 2014 over on my old blog. I did it off and on for the next year or so, but just recently started doing it as more of a quarterly thing. If you’re interested in seeing my old posts about this, you can see them here:

Now, on to the things we finished off during this 5 month span. Worth noting – I was diagnosed with psoriasis during this time, and have just recently started using normal shampoo again (interspersed with medicated shampoo) – so you won’t see many empty shampoo bottles (but don’t worry, we did shower over the past few months!).

The bin was fairly full, as it should be when we’re talking about a five month span.

Hand soap (all from Bath & Body, of course…). Scents finished off:

  • Sea Salt Citrus (I love citrus scents)
  • Fresh Sparkling Snow
  • Citrus Sun Shine
  • Vanilla Bean Noel (such a classic!)
  • Winter Cranberry
  • Candy Cane Bliss
  • Winter Candy Apple (not my favourite, but Luke is a fan)
  • Sparkling Alpine Woods (this bottle was huge!)

Herbal Essences Conditioner – not the best conditioner out there, but it’s cheap and we have a surplus of it.

Aveeno Baby Body Wash – I had bought this when I got my leg tattoo since you are instructed to wash with unscented soap. It’s went back into heavy rotation since it was mild enough to use with my psorasis.

Cooling Mint Jelly – this is similar to Lush’s shower jelly (which I love), except Lush’s is far superior in every way.

Empty Lush bag – I don’t remember what this was exactly, but I know it was either a bubble bar or a bath bomb.

Toothpaste – I love the original Colgate so much. It’s the one we always had in the house growing up, and now I insist on a tube of it always being open in our house.

Q-tips – I use these for everything – removing nail polish, removing makeup, etc. etc etc.

Bread & Butter Face Clean – this was Luke’s, he seems to be a fan.

Ecopure Man Aftershave Balm – Again, Luke’s. I didn’t hear any complaints and he finished off the bottle, so it must have been ok.

Avon Skin So Soft – Basically Avon’s version of Veet or Nair. I have no idea where I got this from, I don’t think I know anyone who sells Avon. Is that even still a thing?

Bath & Body Works Hand Sanitizer – We actually finished off two of these things! Normally they just go missing before we can finish the bottle…

Coolway Boost Repair Treatment – It appears this company has gone out of business, so no sense in giving a review on this.

Nivea face cream – I use moisturizer a lot – even more since being diagnosed with psorasis. This was nothing special, but it did it’s job.

Vanilla Body lotion (foil sample) – I kept this foil sample on my desk at work, and used it up over the course of a few days. It smelled nice.

Perfume samples – I love perfume, and own a few too many bottles of it… I’ve been trying to get through my collection of these little samples lately, and was able to finish off 6 of them over the 5 month span.

  • Prada Candy Florale – I prefer the original Candy, which is one I own a full size bottle of. This one was still really nice though!
  • Calvin Klein Reveal – meh. Not my favourite, but it was wasn’t terrible either.
  • Diesel Loverdose Tattoo – one of my favourites, I also own a full size bottle of this one.
  • Ralph Lauren Midnight Romance – this one was ok – again, not my favourite and not one I need to own full size.
  • Narcisco Rodriguez For Her – this was nice! I’ve liked all of the samples I’ve tried of this brand, but for some reason do not own a full size of any yet…
  • Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream – I own the original Daisy perfume, and this one is similar to that one. I do love the Marc Jacobs full size bottles though 🙂

Luke also finished off one larger sample:

  • Yves St. Laurent La Nuit De L’homme – Luke loves this one, and owns it in a full size bottle already 🙂

Our basket for the next quarter is already starting to fill up 🙂