Eating Around the World – Epcot

Yes, we’ve all seen the great themed t-shirts endorsing drinking around the world. Some are so clever for wedding parties, fraternities and families. I like the shirts with maps of Epcot – just in case you get lost. However, I’m not much of a drinker and end up being the designated driver.

I prefer eating around the world. Sure it’s easier during festival time and they do take up a good portion of the year. Throw in a curve ball and eat around any park!

If I’m going to eat around Epcot here are my can’t miss dishes:

1. Germany – Macaroni and Cheese Curds. OMG! This is pasta, creamy goodness. It’s beyond words. You can get this at the Bier Garten Buffet and also right outside at the quick service counter.

2. UK – Fish & Chips. This is nothing fancy but wicked good. Again this is served inside at the Rose & Crown and quick service. The fish is perfectly breaded and fried. I actually prefer to sit outside.

3. Morocco – Chicken Shawarma. This is our go to meal. The Tangerine Cafe is a quick service that also serves a great roasted chicken meal. 

4. Desert in France – L’Artisan Des Glaces. You can’t go wrong with ice cream! This is super premium and wonderfully flavored. It’s rich enough to share but who wants to do that!

All of this food can be paired with an adult beverage but doesn’t have to be. No matter what you do, enjoy!


The Heat is On – WDW Fanzone

The Heat is On!

It’s almost that time of year again – Summer. Summer in Florida is another whole story. It’s wicked hot. Like surface of the sun hot. This time of year in WDW, the Reedy Creek people get a work out reviving dehydrated park visitors.

So please, drink all day, every day and I’m not talking about adult beverages or even soda. Drink water. I know it’s expensive to buy, so get the free stuff. It’s plentiful at every quick service restaurant. There are even stations set up in some of the parks (Crystal Palace and AK Starbucks) and at all of the resorts.

Bring a water bottle and fill up at water fountains. But just drink. I’ve heard that if you are thirsty then it’s already too late and that you may already be dehydrated. No need to fuss with energy drinks or even Gatorade, good ole H2O is enough.


Positively Disney

Pandora: World of Avatar

It’s finally here! After what feels like decades, Pandora: World of Avatar has finally been opened to the public! The new land based off of the highest grossing movie of all time, Avatar had high expectations and in my opinion, far exceeded them.

To take it all in was exciting. It was like stepping into the movie. Details upon details made the experience borderline overwhelming. I loved every bit of it. I loved how the imagineers were able to make it seem like you were walking through an almost foggy, dense, overgrown area without feeling trapped. 

The area is pretty crowded right now given the anticipation and excitement over the expansion so be prepared to wait in longer lines for the two rides featured in Pandora. The two rides are Na’vi River Journey and Avatar Flight of Passage. Na’vi River Journey is a boat ride through the land of Pandora. I have not been on this ride yet so I don’t have many details. I have been on Avatar Flight of Passage. The ride was very built up as a “Soarin x10” type of experience so I went in there with high expectations. 

They matched my expectations plus some. It is a ride similar to Soarin but takes it beyond with the feeling that you are alone riding this banshee through Pandora. If you don’t look around while riding you will completely forget that you are sharing this ride with 48 people(I think). I would consider this ride a ‘must fastpass’ type of ride. The wait has been starting at around 3 hours but if this is the type of ride you really enjoy I don’t believe you would be upset or underwhelmed if you waited in line. 

I found this entire experience to be very immersive and captures everything that made the movie the hit that it is. I have already spent 2 full days in a row in Animal Kingdom since the expansion opened which is something I can honestly say I have never done. This was exactly was Animal Kingdom needed to bring it from the “half-day maybe” park to the “first stop or more” destination it is now.  



MegaCon Orlando 2016 – pictures

I went to my first comic book convention – MegaCon. I will admit that I had a preconceived notion of what I would see. However it was so much more! More sci-fi, more anime, more artists and more everything!

I thought I would be Disney cute and wear my princess tiara shirt and an actual tiara. Well, I was probably one of the most conservatively dressed people there! The highlight of my day was definitely seeing Stan Lee! At 94 years old, he has been elevated to almost god-like status in this community.

I’m already looking forward to next year’s event!!!










Universal Studios & Island of Adventure 

As a child, taking vacations to Florida really just meant Disney World. Only once in my 30 previous vacations to Florida did I go to Universal Studios or Island of Adventure. Fast forward to moving to Florida, the day I moved here was the day I got my Disney Annual Pass but it took me 2 years 9 months to finally go to Universal.  Being a #DisneySnob, I was not overly excited but really wanted to see what it was like.

I was not disappointed at all. The parks were beautiful. Walking around Unversal Studios made me miss my Streets of America in Hollywood Studios even more. It was really like walking down busy streets in a bustling city. Something new for me was the rides and shows are literally right next to each other, you can go from ride to show to another ride to another show without really adding many steps to your trackers. This made everything flow pretty nicely. 

Though everything is really close together there are still plenty of places to relax and get refreshed. Pictured below is a stage area where you can sit on the turf. They will sometimes play trailers to their upcoming movies but overall it’s pretty quiet(except for the roller coaster) . It was just a nice spot to relax at. There is also a street in the park that is a quiet street, you can’t be rowdy on it. It is meant as a quiet walk through to settle down some restless kids and cool off. 

Though I mostly only have pictures of Universal Studios(forgot my phone day one), my favorite of the two parks was Island of Adventure. The Jurassic Park area was really cool and immersive. The River Adventure ride is so fun and I REALLY wish I had a child with me so I could have gone on the gliders. And, even though I am older, I rode every ride in Seuss Landing. I just couldn’t stop myself. Plus, I got to see my beloved Marvel Superheroes! Now, I would love to talk about the crown jewel of Universal, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter!


This area was really like entering a different world. I really felt like I was in Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley. The attention to detail that was put into everything just blew my mind and don’t even get me started on the Butterbeer! 

Taking the train was really something. I thought it was going to be a basic train ride just connecting the two lands but not at all. I actually saw my train leaving the station and transitioning into arriving at Hogsmeade. It was absolutely incredible. 

Going back to the detail, it felt as though I could stay just in the WWHP for days. It was truly incredible. To submerge myself more into the area, I purchased an interactive wand. The wand allowed me to cast spells at marked windows and feel like an actual wizard(!!).

The rides in this area are awesome. They also have a ride for Harry Potter fans of all ages, or rides for different intensity levels. 

To wrap up my two days at Universal I would like to say that even though through my time there I definitely did a lot of comparing to Disney World, they are really not the same at all. Most of the rides featured in both parks are definitely geared towards an older crowd. So if you have young children I really don’t recommend anything more than a day at the parks. Also, if you are prone to motion sickness or have back and neck problems a lot of the rides, and even some shows, may be a little difficult for you. 

When you purchase a pass, if you would like the whole Harry Potter experience, get the 2-parks 1-day option on your ticket(essentially their park hopper option) or else you cannot ride the train in between the two lands. I also did not think their express pass was needed. The longest we waited in line was 35-40 minutes and this was considered a “moderate” day in the parks. Universal also has an app like Disney. It helps with wait times and getting virtual passes(essentially a fast pass but you actually NEED one to ride the Jimmy Fallon ride). I will say, the wait times are highly inaccurate on the app but it gave me an idea of where everything was(it had rides shut down that were up and 1 hour long waits for rides that had a 20 minute wait) I do think Universal is a must for families who have thrill seekers or Harry Potter fans. Even if you don’t have either of those, it still may be worth a day trip to experience something different than Disney. 

Courtney (@pdcourt)

Hangar at Disney Springs

My only complaint about Jock Lindsey’s Hanger Bar is that it should be Marion’s. Jock was a very minor character in one Indiana Jones movie. Marion played a much bigger role and even owned a bar. 

However, I enjoyed it. The bar food was good and the drinks were extra yummy. I highly suggest the Bacon Fries and Sangria. The view from the deck is stunning especially at sunset.

This isn’t a big place. It’s got a comfortable small bar feel, complete with bar food and specialty drinks. This is the perfect spot to start your night out. Fill your belly with sliders or loaded fries and a cold beer.

My “Expert” Advice 

Before moving to Central Florida two and a half years ago, I had visited WDW. A lot! I believe over 30 trips. I mainly stayed onsight and mostly in good sized groups. Since moving down, I’m in the parks at least once a week. I guess that makes me an expert?

1. Stay onsight. I know it’s more expensive but being emersed in the complete Disney universe is worth it. Enjoy your resort, each one is wonderful. Choose one that suits you. Don’t love it? Go to a different resort next trip or even split your stay. No matter where you stay, take time to visit the resorts, they are so beautifully themed and each one feels like it’s own world.

2. Buy the food plan. Even if it doesn’t save you money (but I think it would), the convenience is worth it. Again, there are different levels so choose wisely. This also depends in part on how structured you want to vacation. Try new places, new foods and get out of your comfort zone. I feel like it will take years for me to eat at every restaurant and I’m up to that challenge.

3. Free stuff. Watch a movie on the lawn of your resort and get popcorn. Play hidden Mickey scavenger hunts. My favorite is at Animal Kingdom Lodge. Visit the resorts, all of them! Stay hydrated with free ice water at any quick service restaurant and spread throughout the parks (Crystal Palace for example). Stickers!!! Who doesn’t love stickers!

Most of all, relax and enjoy! Make every vacation the best one ever!

Gina – Positively Disneyt. 

I Hate That I Love You – Part 2

This is part 2 to an article from last May (see here).  I just want to note that I am still not feeling the love for fanny packs. Not gonna happen! However my list keeps growing so I figured I’d update.


  1. I hate that I love tropical prints. My pants match my couch. I’m not proud of this. We have a dog and a cat who shed and a cream colored couch so we use runners on the furniture. We’re in Florida so we have some tropical touches. Apparently I like the peach and olive combination. (This is a runner from a Disney Resort that I got at the Cast Store. Does anyone know which resort?) pants
  2. I hate that I would love to wear a Snuggie to the parks. I am now one of those people who freezes when the temperature is below 70 degrees out. I used to shovel snow in shorts, boots and with an ice coffee! Now I wrap up in a blanket to watch Fantasmic. I haven’t quite gone to the dark side yet – like I don’t have socks or anything weird like that but I like a nice Mickey hoodie. Boathouse
  3. I hate that I love to compare any other hotel to Disney Resorts. This one has a great pool but is it as good as Ol’ Man Island at Port Orleans Riverside? I like the buffet at this hotel but it’s not as good as The Wave at the Contemporary. Nice room, cute balcony but at Animal Kingdom Lodge they have zebras. Real zebras and giraffes. My goal is to stay at each Disney resort – I’m getting there. zebra

Bonus: I think the Castle dressed up like a pink confection was adorable! I visited 3 times during that anniversary celebration. castle

Gina PD

The Other Side of the Glass – My Review of  Chefs de France

I had peeked longingly through the windows of Chefs de France for many years. The food looked amazing, the staff attentive and the patrons joyful. When I finally went in, I have to say, I was not disappointed!

The menu is quite extensive. We asked our (super nice and knowledgeable) server for his opinions and suggestions. We had some ideas but were definitely helped along.

The crusty bread was warm and not shockingly delicious. We had the Alsace specialty Flat Bread. It was so creamy and tangy with sautéed onions, crème fraîche  and bacon. This is very rich.

I had the Bisque de homard – Lobster Bisque and loved the large pieces of lobster and creamy texture of the soup. I am a New Englander and can be snobby about my bisque and still truly enjoyed this!

Joe had the Soupe à l’oignon gratinée (French Onion Soup). He has had different versions of this at Be Our Guest and The Grand Floridian Café. He had a hard time deciding which was the best. Although this soup was amazing, his choice is still the GF Café.

Joe had the Boeuf Bourguignon, polenta crémeuse (Beef Short Ribs). I have to say that this was the first time I have ever seen him not able to finish a plate. It was a little shocking. The polenta was super creamy and so rich. I may have stolen some off his plate.

I had the wicked fancy mac and cheese – Gratin de Macaroni. Again, super rich and beyond filling. I could not finish more than half. Don’t worry, I took it home and had it for breakfast the next morning.

Deserts can’t be beaten! Yes, I know I said we were super full but there’s always room for:

Crème Brûlée, Gateau au Chocolat and Meringue aux fruits rouges

All amazing, all finished down to the plate. Don’t judge.

So between the atmosphere, the service, the food and the extra points for scoring this reservation at literally the last moment on Easter, I will give the Chefs de France a 5 Mickey Head Rating – out of 5!

Maybe little kids wouldn’t get the same thing out of this restaurant that teens and adults would. I would go with someone who enjoys a really good meal and being treated like a prince or princess.