Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Drinking Around the World at Epcot

Last week I recapped my magical year being an annual pass holder at Disney World along with some of my tips and tricks to navigate the parks. Now, it's time to talk about my favorite Mickey-approved drinks.


Other than taking a spin on Test Track or Soarin' over California, what Epcot is most known for is drinking around the world in the World Showcase section of the park. Now I have done this several times, but I have never truly drank around the world so to speak for two reasons: cost and there's no way my stomach could handle it. I think my stomach would revolt against me if I had a tequila flight in Mexico, sake in Japan, beer in Germany, wine in Italy, and champagne in France. That and prices range anywhere from just under $10 to over $15 a piece. Try dropping that kind of cash in each "country". So, what I do is test out different drinks as I make my way around in several countries, but not all in one visit. Each visit, I tried to make sure I was sampling something new until I figured out what my favorites were.

*The cranberry bog during the 2012 Food & Wine Festival*


In England, you will find the Rose & Crown pub which serves up traditional English food and drinks in an English pub style setting. No matter what time of day it is this place is always packed and can be a tad rowdy. Be prepared to wait a bit before getting the bartender's attention to order (it may flash you back to fighting to get a drink order in at a club back in college). 


My favorite drinks at Rose & Crown are the Leaping Leprechaun and the Welsh Dragon both of which are green, tasty, and surprisingly affordable if you request it not to be served in the souvenir cup ($6-$8 a piece instead of $10.50 for the WD and $12.75 for the LL). 

Welsh Dragon ~ peach schnapps, melon liqueur, creme de menthe, OJ, and pineapple juice.

Leaping Leprechaun ~ Myers Rum, Skyy Vodka, Jameson Irish Whiskey, melon liqueur, sweet and sour mix, and topped off with sprite.




As you make your way into France, there's a cart by the water called Les Vins des Chefs de France where they are always popping bottles of champagne (my favorite sound!) and serving up delicious spirit infused slushes. I've tried both the Orange and the Citron slushes, and by far I like the Orange one the best and consider it a must try for anyone at Epcot.

Orange Slush ~ Grand Marnier, rum, Grey Goose Orange vodka, and OJ

Citron Slush ~ Grey Goose Citron vodka and lemonade



*At the koi pond in Japan with my Orange Slush*


My other favorite slushie drink is the Sultan's Colada in the Morocco pavilion which is made with rum, pineapple juice, coconut juice, and almond liqueur. 


My favorite drinks in Italy are shockingly not wine, but the limoncello shot (served at a cart to the right in the square or inside the Tutto Gusto Wine Cellar) and the Italian Margherita served at Tutto Italia Ristorante.


Yep... be prepared to shell out $9 for that tiny little limoncello drink, but trust me it's worth it! You can either take it like a shot, or do I what I do and sip on it. Since it's $9 I like to enjoy it for a little while instead of just throwing the whole thing back all at once.

*A glass of Italian champs is also always a great idea*


I love that the American pavilion carries seasonal beers at the same cart that serves up those delicious Mickey shaped stuffed pretzels. My favorite is the Abita Strawberry during the summer months.




One of my most recent finds was the Canto Loopy at the Joy of Tea stand in the China pavilion. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture of it so I found a google image of it. It's pretty looking and it's super sweet (made with vodka and cantaloupe juice) so you'll only want one before moving on to something else.


I'm also a sucker for the flavored margaritas and the tequila flight in Mexico which allows you to sample three different tequila shots at La Cava del Tequila.

*Everyone say TEQUILA!!!*

Let's not forget there is deliciousness to be found at Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios as well. Some of my favorites include the African Margarita at AK and the margarita flight at the Hollywood Brown Derby at HS.


The African Margarita can be found at the Dawa Bar, and is made with Sauza Gold tequila, Van der Hum, sweet and sour, and lime juice.





What are some of your favorite drinks at Disney World?

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Easy Turkey Sausage Pasta

During the week I'm all about easy dinners, and when I haven't set the crockpot to cook dinner all day while I'm at work I turn to meals I can whip up quickly. Enter my new thrown together recipe of deliciousness which I am calling Easy Turkey Sausage Pasta.


Ingredients

Lean turkey sausage
Spaghetti
Light caesar dressing (I've also used three cheese ranch which was just as good)
1 small tomato, diced
Pepperoncinis
Garlic salt, basil leaves, pasta seasoning, and pepper to taste

Directions

Boil pasta until cooked to your liking as well as boil the turkey sausage for 12 minutes
Dice the tomato and de-stem the pepperoncinis
Drain the pasta and cut up the cooked turkey sausage
Combine all ingredients in one pot over low heat
Scoop into bowls and enjoy





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1. Follow Emily and myself on GFC and Bloglovin
2. Link up your favorite recipes or food related posts
3. Grab our Recipe Swap button and link back to both of our blogs
4. Be sure to visit other blogs and find new recipes! 



Monday, January 26, 2015

Fancy Bowling and Live Music Weekend

Another amazing weekend that went by in the blink of an eye, but it was the perfect blend of fun and relaxation which is always more than welcome.


Friday night was spent outside on the patio with buffalo dip and Skinny Girl Margaritas before heading inside for a Netflix movie night. H and I enjoyed our new theater chairs while Roxy took over the bean bag. It was too adorable, and I have a feeling she now thinks it's her beanbag.


I ran some weekend errands on Saturday and picked up these Michael Kors Jelly Charm sandals at Marshalls. They were too pretty not to buy, but I'm nervous that the metal MK emblem will be uncomfortable if I'm doing a lot of walking.

Then it was time for a double birthday celebration at a fancy new bowling alley that recently opened up nearby. We were in a private area with our own lanes and it even included pizza and lots of yummy apps. 

*Excuse my grainy iPhone pics*


*Emily and I between bowling turns*


Afterwards we made our way over to a live music venue where we continued the fun with some dancing.

Joining Biana for Weekending
and
Lisa and Bella for Weekend Recap

Friday, January 23, 2015

Friday Favs

Happy Friday! Even after having a short week due to the holiday, I am beyond thankful to be ringing in the weekend, and have so much to love from this week.

1. There's this cute little cake shop near my job called Nothing Bundt Cakes, and they left a stack of vouchers for a free mini bundt. And if you know me at all I can never say no to cake, so I ventured over with my co-worker and we both picked up our free bundtlets. I got the white-white chocolate chip and split it with H at home and it was DELISH!

*Perfect little dessert*

2. Since I was off on Monday, I didn't make it to my usual lunchtime Bar Method class, so I improvised and did an online Barre3 workout at home. So happy to finally have some 3 lb. weights (I was using 5 pounders before which is a little too much for this workout). All you need for at home Barre3 workouts are some light weights and your kitchen counter.


3. Speaking of work outs, I have never been more thankful for the yoga classes offered at my job twice a week at lunch. It's such an amazing re-charge in the middle of the work day, and it's great to see them helping us with our health and wellness too.


4. Loving my latest Rocksbox delivery... another gorgeous statement necklace.


5. Loving my recent finds on Pinterest:









*Blue Lagoon, Iceland*









Linking up today with Rebecca for That Friday Blog Hop, Christina for 5 on Friday, Tif for High Five for Friday, and Amanda for Friday Favorites. Hop on over and join us! Happy Friday!


Thursday, January 22, 2015

Post Holiday Shopping

After all the shopping for Christmas gifts over the past few months, it was nice to utilize some gift cards and take advantage of some post-Christmas sales and treat myself too.

I cashed in my Express gift cards right away, and picked up two graphic tees and some cobalt blue ankle pants which are perfect for work.

Love tee {sold out} | Ankle Pants | Casual Friday Tee


Next up on my Express wish list is this Elastic Stripe Fit and Flare Dress. Perfect for the upcoming warmer temps, enjoying brunch outside or some drinks and a movie.


Next, I took advantage of the VS Semi-Annual Sale where I replaced my nude multi-way bra (sold out), and picked up some cropped yoga pants in Heather Oatmeal for barre and yoga classes, a comfy tunic in Leopard, and casual dress (sold out) for the weekends.

*Paired the new tunic with some VS leggings and Target flats for movie night on Saturday*

What are some of your recent favorite fashion finds?

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

A Magical Year

I don't even know where to begin to recap an amazing magic filled year as a Disney World annual pass holder. All I can say is that if you live in Florida, make sure you take advantage of the FL resident annual pass options (many to choose from). I know that EmilyKerri, and Amanda have all taken advantage of this wonderful program as well and have enjoyed every second. We went when it was wind-whipping cold and oppressively hot, but I enjoyed every single trip and can't pinpoint which of the 4 parks is my favorite, because they are all amazing in their own way.





Magic Kingdom


Magic Kingdom is the most recognized and visited park, but there are a lot of things you should know before you go.

1. This is definitely the most crowded park. You will be dodging people left and right, and if there's a parade going on in the area you're in good luck trying to move through it.

2. Always always always reserve fast passes ahead of time before arriving at the park. You don't want to wait 2-3 hours for the new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train or the always popular Space Mountain. Fast passes are always free and available up to 30 days in advance.

3. There is no alcohol served in this park unless you are dining at the Be Our Guest Restaurant in Beast's castle in the new Fantasy Land.


4. Try to avoid sitting in the caboose car on Space Mountain. You don't want to be in the absolute back seat as you'll get jerked around a lot as the train pulls you up and down. The sore neck and back afterwards is not worth it.

5. If it's really hot while you're there, opt for rides where you can escape into the air conditioning such as Space Mountain, The Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Hall of Presidents, Peter Pan's Flight, It's a Small World, the Carousel of Progress, and parts of the People Mover. Even the queue line for Dumbo the Flying Elephant is inside and kept cool.






Animal Kingdom


I love this park because it's the perfect combination of a beautiful zoo with splashes of Disney touches. And you can't beat the Kilimanjaro Safari...





*My favorite drink at the park is the African Margarita available at the Dawa Bar*



Expedition Everest is a must-do


I also love all the hiking trails around The Tree of Life where you can see several different kinds of animals along the way. Dino Land is also pretty cool, and Dinosaur is another must-do attraction along with Kali River Rapids before hitting up The Lion King Show and It's Tough to be a Bug.



Hollywood Studios


I wasn't a big fan of Hollywood Studios at first as it felt like a smaller version of Universal Studios. But once I rode Aerosmith's Rock n' Roller Coaster and the Tower of Terror I was hooked. Plus they have the most incredible light display around Christmas called The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights which is a must-see if you're there around the holidays.











You can also catch the Indiana Jones show and bring out the kid in you by playing on the Honey I Shrunk the Kids play set.



Epcot


Definitely hit up this park the most between the Flower and Garden Festival in the spring and the Food and Wine Festival in the fall and all the different concerts. We got to see Starship, Fuel, 38 Special, Night Ranger, and my favorite... Boyz II Men.



*One of my favorite rides*





Koi pond in "Japan"





*Drinks around the world is a great way to celebrate a friend's b-day*



Boyz II Men

Starship

Fuel

*Tequila shots in "Mexico"*

On our way to see Fuel perform

Illuminations Fireworks show (happens every night)

What happens in "Mexico" stays in "Mexico"


What are your favorite things to do in Disney World?
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