Beaches and Cream Soda Shop

IMG_1266If you’re looking for one of the best burgers in town or just hungry for some yummy dessert…Beaches & Cream Soda Shop is the place you’ll want to go!  Beaches & Cream Soda Shop is located at Disney’s Beach Club Resort, along side of Stormalong Bay.  It’s a short walk from The Boardwalk or if you happen to be at Epcot in the World Showcase area, you an take a quick walk or boat ride from the exit between France & the United Kingdom.

Beaches & Cream Soda Shop is adorned in a pastel color palette .  It reminds me of the colors you see if you buy a bag of saltwater taffy.  You’ll definitely want to grab a seat early on in the day if you can, as it is a very small place.  It has three booths adorned with beach balls, a handful of white wrought iron tables & then you have a counter running along two wall with plenty of seating there as well.  Of course, there is a juke box right when you walk in as well.  They also have a few tables outside on the sidewalk overlooking Stormalong Bay, if you prefer to sit outside.  The tables are adorable and look like ice cream cones.

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The day I went with my parents, we were lucky and didn’t have to wait more than 5 minutes to be seated at one of the tables inside.  We took awhile to look over the menu, but we were all hungry for a good burger, so that’s what we all ordered.  Honestly, it’s one of the best burgers I’ve had since moving to Florida.  If I wasn’t so hungry for a burger that day, they had the most amazing looking grilled cheese sandwich served along side a cup of tomato soup.  I’ll definitely be getting that next time!  They also have hotdogs, chili, & a few other sandwiches to choose from.

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When it was time for dessert, none of us were still that hungry, but it all looked so good as we see order after order of ice cream and shakes being delivered to other tables.  My dad loves a good Chocolate Malt, so that’s what he ordered.  Keep in mind, if you order one of the shakes/malts…they serve it up the old fashioned soda shop style way.  They fill up a big glass with the shake or malt and then give you the remainder of what is left in the tin cup it was made in, which is another big cups worth, so you may want to share!  As for my mom and I, we decided to split the strawberry shortcake with fresh strawberries, which was topped with a huge scoop of vanilla bean ice cream and a big ‘ol dollop of whipped cream with colored sprinkles.  It was delicious!

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So don’t forget about this little hidden secret next time you are out visiting The Boardwalk or lolly gagging around Epcot and you’re hungry for some tasty treats!  All of the prices are really reasonable too!  Oh, and if you or your family are big fans of ice cream, you may want to order up one of there most known for deserts….The Kitchen Sink!  If you’re able to tackle that beast…congratulations!  It is eight giant scoops of ice cream smothered in about every topping imaginable!

The Missing Paragraph

IMG_1372Happy Hump Day!  Luckily this week is going by pretty quickly, which is always fine by me…it just means we are that much closer to the weekend again!

As you know, I’ve had several blog posts published over this past week over at i.seekissimmee.com.  Unfortunately, they’ve taken it upon themselves to edit some of my posts, which doesn’t make me a happy camper because there edits make my article sound horrible…like something is missing.  It’s not as if they did an edit so it flowed well & didn’t sound like I left stuff out, as I like to be very detailed.  Well, if you read the “Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue” post, they decided to cut out the second paragraph, which is one of the most important parts of my post on the transportation getting to and from the location.  I know I was a bit nervous because I got several different answers when I was researching the options ourselves, so I wanted to make everyone else’s experience a little less worry-some by providing the information regarding the transportation from experiencing it first hand.  You can see the edited post here.   Below is the missing paragraph the way it was supposed to be published regarding the transportation to the show if you’d like it for your reference.

The Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue is held at the Pioneer Hall which is located at Ft. Wilderness Campgrounds.  After talking to several Disney staff at various different places & trying to get an idea of the best mode of transportation because I received different answers from all, we decided not to drive ourselves, but instead we took a bus from the Dolphin & Swan where we were staying directly to Magic Kingdom.  Once at Magic Kingdom, they had a ferry-boat that took us right to Ft. Wilderness.  Now since our dinner show was scheduled around 8:00pm, we wouldn’t be getting out until 10:00pm or so, in which the Magic Kingdom was closed, so we wouldn’t be able to go back the way we came.  No worries…after the show, they make sure to have about 4 or 5 buses & when you approach you just tell them which of the Disney hotels you are staying or if you’re going to Downtown Disney & they will direct you to the correct bus & get you back to where you need to go without a problem!  I honestly was a bit nervous not knowing how the buses worked, but take it from me…it’s worry free!

Well, I hope this additional bit of information was helpful to you if you are, in fact, planning to go to the Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue the next time you are on vacation at Disney or just in the Orlando area.  If you have any other questions, feel free to leave a comment below, as I’m always willing to assist if I can!

Feelin’ the Love!

As I’m not one of those people that celebrates Valentine’s day, as it seems like a “Hallmark” holiday to me, I am one to celebrate unbirthday’s & today is mine!  Yay!  Well, let me tell you…it’s been a pretty darn good unbirthday, besides the 4 separate conference calls I had to be on today & not being able to get much else done inbetween….I definitely felt the love this week, even though it was all Valentine’s Day themed…haha.  Earlier in the week, I walked into my office to find an earlier Valentine from by bestie that was super adorable.

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See…I told you it was super adorable!  I cleared out the chocolate this week and then hung up the lid to the tin on my bulletin board.  I love me some old school Mickey & Minnie!

Then yesterday afternoon, before I closed up the office at work, my student worker came in and worked her magic on the front office and decked it out in pink and red decor all over the place.  It definitely caught everyones eye today!

IMG_1403And then….when I got into work this morning there were homemade cupcakes from Miss Decor & the other student worker, who is also Anti-Valentine’s day….she made heart shaped sugar cookies with black frosting and some had angry little faces on them…lol.  Cracked me up & they were pretty darn tasty too!  Then I walked into my office & had flowers, a handmade card & box of chocolates from my little decorator….such a little sweetheart!

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IMG_1411I’m not a flower person either, but these were super cute and had pink confetti hearts all over the flowers…ADORBS!  Then the card was just the icing on the cake.  Definitely felt the love today!  Thanks girlie’s!

 

Catch Up Time!

Holy smokes guys….it’s been a while since I’ve written an actual post!  So, I guess it’s time to play catch-up!  November 16th I packed my bags and headed home to Illinois for Thanksgiving for a nice 12 day vacation.  It’s hard to believe it was a month ago today that I was getting on that plane home.  Like they say…time flies!  Time flew by pretty fast when I was at home too!  It was a lot easier leaving and not crying my eyes out like I usually do when I leave, since my parent are coming to visit the first week of February!  YAY!!  Anyways, before I flew home I thought it would be nice to have some family pictures taken since we haven’t had any taken in years, so the day after I arrived, we headed out for pics down by the Mississippi River & then to my favorite park.  We lucked out & it was a gorgeous & warm day outside for that time of year….now a week later…it’s was in the 30’s, so when I say we lucked out, I mean it!  Here’s a few shots…

Mom, Chris (Not so little bro), Me, Dad & Sara (little sis)

Mom, Chris (Not so little bro), Me, Dad & Sara (little sis)
Sara, Jenn & Chris

Sara, Jenn & Chris

12.17If anyone back home reads this & is looking for a good photographer in the Burlington, IA area, you should check out SAS Photography & contact Sarah Schulz, as she does a wonderful job & has awesome prices!  Thanks again, Sarah!

After being a bum & gaining 10lbs from all that great home cooking, I headed home on the 27th.  I had a little bit of an annoying cough when I got on the plane & had been popping vitamin C all day like a crazy person, but by the next day or so I was back in Orlando it had turned into a full blown cold…Blah!  I blame the plane ride & all that recycled air.

So with being on vacation, being sick & busy with Christmas shopping…I just haven’t had the urge to write.  Seems like when I do have thoughts of things to write…its when I’m somewhere that I’m not near my computer, like on the ride home from work and totally space out and miss turns and such…yes, I do that.

I have managed to do a Disney park pretty much every weekend since I returned from vacation, so I can check out all of the Disney holiday goodness.  Like the lighting of Cinderella’s Castle….it was magical & oh so beautiful!  I took a video of the whole thing so you wouldn’t feel left out, but I can’t figure out how to post it here, so I will post pics, which just don’t do it justice!  🙂  We even experienced New Year’s the night I went as they were filming some sort of New Year’s celebration and had the clock on the castle set to midnight for filming…it was kind of comical.

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IMG_1012Along with enjoying all the lights & events in the parks, my friend Eric & I have been resort hopping and checking out the lights & decor in all of the Disney resorts.  They all have lovely trees…one had a life size Gingerbread house in the lobby that they of course were selling gingerbread cookies out of.  Another had the biggest freakin’ Mickey Mouse wreath I’ve ever seen!

DisneyChristmasNow last weekend, my friends Eric & Jay took my out for and AWESOME dinner at Epcot at Tutto Italia, which included specialty seating for the Candlelight Processional AND V.I.P. viewing area for the fireworks show Illuminations.  I didn’t get any pics that night, as I was just having way to much fun.  There are several videos on YouTube of the Candlelight Processional…I went to the one that was narrated by James Denton (Actor from Desperate Housewives).

Now this afternoon I have plans to go with my Disney companions to go to Mickey’s Jammin’ Jingle Parade at Animal Kingdom & then we are hopping over to the Osborne Family Light Spectacle at MGM (Currently known as Hollywood Studios, but I refuse to call it that like any diehard Disney fan)! 🙂

Well, that pretty much wraps things up to what’s been going on in my world lately.  Got all presents wrapped and shipped out yesterday, so all that stuff is out of the way.  I have gifts for friends sitting here to hand out this coming week.  I’m kind of bummed I’ve only gotten one Christmas card so far this year.  I always loved Christmas cards…I only send out a few anymore since I never seem to get any back.  I was super excited to come home Friday though and found my landlords had left my yearly Christmas present hanging on the door, which this year was the cutest cookie jar…filled to the brim with cookies & a cute jar full of peppermint taffy.  They are the best!

IMG_1022Well…I’m going to call it a wrap!  Let’s hope the writing bug keeps flowing this week, so here’s until next time!

Cheers!

Disney & BFF’s…Can it Get Any Better?

The weekend is over….Boo!  I had a nice long weekend, since I had Friday off.  Friday & Sunday were spent running errands and relaxing.  Saturday was a Disney day with the be sties.

We spent a good majority of the day enjoying the Food & Wine Festival at Epcot.  We were kind of hoping for the cooler weather we have had all week, so we could wear jeans and sweaters and enjoy some fall weather, but we got clear skies, hot sun & no breeze.  I know it hit at lease 85 degrees, so it was a little warm, but we’re used to it, so we had fun.

When we first entered the World Showcase our first big decision was to go right or left…we opted to head left.  We walked by a couple of booths that didn’t really catch our eye & then we came to Austrailia.  None of the main dishes really sounded like anything we wanted, but the dessert sounded pretty good, so that’s what we got for out first taste of the day and it was delicious!
After that, we headed for Mexico & went on the ride there.  Didn’t bother with the food since it was mostly tacos and expensive margaritas…both which can be made at home…PASS!
Next up on our list, which is my most favorite country to get food….GERMANY!  I stepped in line and ordered one of everything…Brat on a Pretzel Roll, Schinken Nudel (Pasta Gratin w/ Ham & Cheese) & Apple Strudel with Karamel-Vanilla Sauce.  Don’t worry…I shared!
When we were all done stuffing our faces with yummy German goodness.  We decided to play around with Stephanie’s new iPhone and take pictures of ourselves.  It actually turned out pretty good because we were just being silly and having fun.  Please excuse the brows…the German came out and they went crazy again.  No worries…I have an appointment to whip them back into shape Friday! 🙂
After poking around in Germany and having some fun we headed towards France in search of Creme Brûlée & alcohol.  I passed on the Creme Brûlée, as I was too full from all the food in Germany.  I did go for a Grand Marnier Orange Slush….it tasted just like an orange push-up pop.  So good!  I was quite sad when it was all gone! 😦
After the orange slush, I was good to go for awhile as far as treats went.  I think we headed towards Greece & Canada and the group split and everyone got what they wanted.  I just wanted a water by that point, as I was a bit parched, since it was pretty darn warm out.
Next, we headed for Spaceship Earth before we left the park for the day.  Stephanie & I ended up heading over to the Magic Kingdom though, since we wanted to ride a couple of our favorite rides.  By the time we got over there, we decided we wanted ice cream.  It was pretty good, but I think they gave me more whipped cream than ice cream.
When we were all done with our dessert we headed for the Laugh Floor & watched a quick show, which is always amusing.  Then we headed for one of our favorite rides…Haunted Mansion.  Got there and it was closed due to technical errors.  So we started heading for the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and quickly turned around when we seen the line & wait time of over an hour.  Next stop…Pirates of the Caribbean & guess what?!  Closed due to technical errors!  Ahhh!  After that, we called it a day & headed home.  The end.

It’s the Little Things: Painting & Halloween Fun

I thought it was time to do a little things post, as I’ve been slacking since the link-up over at Hello Hue hasn’t been up for a little while, but it’s back up again, so it you’d like to join in and do a “Little Things” post you can link up here.

I got the creative bug this week and did a few paintings for my shop.  Loved how this Cherry Blossom painting turned out.  I did it on a 3×3 canvas & turned it into an adorable magnet.  I’m currently working on a 10×10 version for the BFF since she liked it so much.

I went to Hobby Lobby this afternoon and literally everything was 50% off….it took so much to just walk out with one thing!  All of the framed pics and canvas paintings were 50% off and I was just drawn to the “Bird on a Wire” pic.  I walked away about 5 times, but kept going back and finally an old woman walked up behind me and said, “That’s a good one, I think you should get it”, so who am I to argue with an adorable old woman, so I got it! 🙂

On Halloween, my adorable student worker came in all decked out in her Snow White costume and totally decked out my front office in decorations and passed out candy!  Love my student workers…they are adorable and so full of energy.  So thankful for them…they brighten my day.

Thursday morning I get to work and a Nutella truck is in the parking lot, passing out free Nutella and waffles covered in Nutella.  YUMMO!

Other things Not Pictured:

Making plans for some Disney fun for the next two Saturdays in a row!

Seeing pics of my BFF all decked out in full on Princess costume in order to get some $2 Chipolte!  And then getting a phone call that night to hear a funny story….yep, it’s the little things that make my day!

Seeing another good friend post in excitement that he got a role in the t.v. show “Vampire Diaries” and is in Altanta Facebooking status updates from the set in excitement.  So proud of him!  He’s going to be a famous in no time he’s so talented!

It’s Novemeber…15 more days until I get to fly home for a week and a half!!  Can’t wait!

Weekend Wrap-up

Whew….that weekend went by fast!  It was a pretty mellow week this week.  It was actually kind of slow at the office….hence the below “We’re Bored & Happy it’s Friday” photos.  It was entertainment for a good 10 minutes or so…

Then on Saturday, it was just so darn gorgeous outside….I went to Disney!  It’s finally that time of year where we are getting the cooler weather…low 80’s…haha!  I went in the afternoon & then had some friends meet me there who are Disney nuts too!  We had a good time running around and doing a few rides like The Haunted Mansion, The People Mover, Pirates of the Caribbean, etc…  We snuck in a few others things here and there as well, but the parks were insanely busy for this time of year!  We saw 60 minute wait times for rides like Peter Pan….CRA-ZY!

Disney is all decked out in Halloween decor & was super cute.  You can see in the photo above of a Minnie Mouse holding a pumpkin statue and then of course the adorable pumpkin Mickey wreath.  I was a little hungry since I ate brunch and by 3:30 I was wishing I would have just waited and had lunch.  Since there is a bit of a Biggest Loser weight loss competition going on at work that I’m in on, I tried my best to be good.  I ended up opting for a delicious fruit tart….yes it was as good as it looks!  It was hard opting for that vs. the hot cinnamon roll the size of a plate that smelled out of this world, but I was totally satisfied with my fruit tart as it was very yummy!

Well, that pretty much sums up my weekend in a short and sweet way.  I was pretty much a bum today, other than for some light cleaning & laundry & of course the Sunday grocery run at Target, where I always find other things to buy besides groceries!  Perhaps, I should limit my Target run to once a month! 🙂

Disney, Food & Wine….Oh My!

Well, I don’t know about y’all, but I had a rather FABULOUS weekend!  On Saturday, I woke up late for a change.  While I was trying to wake up a little, I crossed my fingers and checked my bank account and payday came early for me instead of having to wait until Monday….YAY!  So, I paid bills & determined I was going to treat myself, after a super busy couple of weeks at work.  So, I jumped in the shower & got ready for the day & headed out on a mission.  Guess what?  Mission Accomplished!  I’m the proud new owner of a Disney annual pass!  YES, YES, YES!!!  So excited!

After I bought it…I immediately sent a text to a friend and they were there within the hour with friends & we spent the rest of the day until a little after 9:00 eating & drinking our way around the world at the Epcot Food & Wine Festival.  While I was waiting for their arrival, I took a shortcut and jumped a ferry straight to Germany, as I was starving since I hadn’t ate all day & I was craving the brat on a pretzel roll, so I scarfed one of those & stood in line for some good ‘ol German beer.  I opted for a flight of four different beers & they were all pretty tasty!

My partners in crime showed up while I was enjoying my beers, so I finished them up and then started walking towards China and ran into them shortly around Korea.  Then it was onward ho the rest of the day.  Had some awesome Key Lime Wine at the Florida booth, then a Belgium Waffle with berries and whipped topping in Belgium, Creme Brûlée in France, “Le Cellier” Wild Mushroom Beef Filet Mignon with Truffle Butter Sauce and Apple Ice Wine in Canada. Oh yeah…I also had some of the apple strudel before leaving Germany. It was a pretty kick ass day of just chill in’ out, eating, drinking,  people watching & having some good laughs.

Pure Chocolate Sculpture of Finding Nemo….total waste of chocolate, I say!

Then on Sunday morning, I got up and browsed the Target ad, while trying to wake up.  I got super excited because there was a piece of furniture I had taken a picture of on my phone about a month ago that I wanted to get eventually & it was in the ad on sale for about $30 off….SCORE!  So, I got ready real quick & drove straight to Target and snagged the last one on the shelf…YAY!  It took me a while to put together, as all the screw holes weren’t exact, but after walking away for a bit and coming back to it later with some good advice from my brother, I got it put together.  I think it looks pretty darn good!

Also, while I was at Target….I finally found the suckers I’ve been searching for, around this time of year, for the past couple years….Double Score!

And that was pretty much my weekend!  How was yours?

Daydreaming & Shopping

13 days and counting until the cruise & it can’t get here fast enough!  I have never been so ready for a vacation, as it’s been way too long since my last!  Plus I’m uber excited to be going with the BFF!  My last besties vacay was back in ’97 or ’98 when I was in college and went on Spring Break to none other than….Walt Disney World, which is now practically in my back yard!

So, now I’m sitting here on a Sunday night, dreading the thought of having to make it another full two weeks of work until some well earned R&R!  On the plus side of things though, I’ve been busy shopping and trying to find a few new things to wear on the cruise.  I’m not a shopper and despise it, but I was able to find a few good pieces to add to the wardrobe & most of them were on sale, which makes it even better.  This weekend I hit up a couple of malls and finally found a black dress for the captains dinner on the cruise.  I’m not a dress person whatsoever, so I wasn’t going to be happy with anything, but I had the hardest time finding ANYTHING!  Supposedly, it’s not dress season if you’re not a size 2!  Anyways, I got a suggestion from a good sales lady and landed a decent dress on sale for $30, which you can’t beat that!

Another thing that has kept me busy this weekend is coming up with ideas of goodies to send my foodie penpal!  This is my first month signing up, so I’m excited to see what my foodie penpal will think of the box of goodness I put together for her.  Plus, you’re not matched up with the same person that’s sending you stuff, so you get to “meet” two new people in the process, which is really fun getting to e-mail back and forth with some new peeps, plus you get introduced to new blogs….FUN!  Anyways, the matches are sent out on the 5th of the month, so if you’d like to join in and be a Foodie Penpal, you can read more and sign up over at the The Lean Green Bean blog.

Anyways, sorry not to have anything too exciting to post about.  I’ve just been preoccupied daydreaming of vacation.  I’ve cruised many times before & it’s always been a blast, so I’m super stoked!  Oh yeah, if you want a good suggestion for something to get the next time you run to Super Target…or at least that’s where I bought mine, buy yourself some White Chocolate Wonderful Peanut Butter!  OMG….BEST peanut butter EVER!  It’s this yummy gluten free peanut butter blended with sweet white chocolate.  They had a chocolate blend as well, but I’m sure it’s similar to Nutella, so I wanted to try something a little different & so glad I did!  Well, hope y’all have a great week!