Tag Archives: travel

Escape to Disney World

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This winter was so awful we actually planned a “tropical” escape to Disney World in Florida.  It was nice to see greenery and flowing water during this nasty winter.  Unfortunately it wasn’t quite as warm as we’d hoped due to a freak snowstorm in Atlanta, but hey – at least it wasn’t the arctic tundra.

We celebrated our 15th Wedding Anniversary by taking a horse-drawn carriage ride along the river to the French Quarter and dinner Downtown on Valentine’s Day (Yes, we were married ON Valentine’s Day!)  and the next evening had a very fancy French dinner at Monsieur Paul’s in Epcot.  The filet mignon was excellent!

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“Big John” pulled our Carriage

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Dinner at Monsier Paul’s in Epcot’s France – check out the mini Tour d’Eiffel in the background

The Port Orleans Riverside Resort was lovely and all of the restaurants really were very accommodating to food allergies.  On the other hand, the Parks were really big (the smallest is 185 acres!) and we were exhausted by 2pm daily.  Forget any nighttime fireworks.  Oy. 

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Before our trip, I asked a few friends who had recently been there for some advice.
I received none.  I think if they’d been honest, they would have said,

“Don’t Go.”

Here’s why – the truth about DisneyWorld according to comedian Jim Gaffigan:

And yes, there is some real truth here.  Just sayin’.
There is much excitement, but there is nothing relaxing about a Disney vacation.
It took us all a week to recover.  Returning to another Polar Vortex certainly didn’t help.

Next time we’ll venture further South to a place with just a room and a beach.  Aah!

Mabel’s Labels!

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mabel 1  Mable SmallCombo-21

This product is a godsend for people with kids!  (or seniors, or forgetful adults…)

I have been using Mabel’s Labels for about 5 years now and love them.  The Tag Mates stay on through the laundry, the Skinny Minis stay on through the dishwasher – for YEARS.

Really.

I have Laptop Lunch kits that are 7 years old and the labels have been on them for 2-5 years.

The material resembles the stickers used on license plates for car registration (tabs).
They stick to non-porous surfaces and synthetic fabrics and stay put.  UV safe too.

Products include name labels for just about anything including clothing and shoes, sports equipment, travel bags, household (organizing) containers, allergy, safety wristbands, holiday and stationery.  Whew!  That’s quite a list!

If you have someone in the family that tends to lose stuff, check these out!

Mabel Hockey combo Mabel Allergy

Family Reunion Weekend

Just returned from a Family Reunion in Chetek, Wisconsin.

It was nice to visit with everyone, especially with the recent loss of a beloved uncle.  One of the cousins owns a cabin on the lake and hosted the event.  Along with the usual water and lawn activities, we were entertained by Bald Eagles flying overhead and fishing the lake.

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Chetek is a cute little town where everything is closed by 5pm except the bars, restaurants and gas stations (even the coffee house shut down at 4:30!)  There’s also an old-fashioned 50’s-style corner diner!

The local Rod ‘n’ Gun shop was a hit with Hubby and Son.

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Good thing we don’t have a hitch on our car or… 

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We lived on the lake in Duluth for 6 years, so I’m done with launching and maintaining these.

With so many relatives attending, we decided to stay at a local resort.  Hubby went all out and got us the Waterfall Hot Tub Suite, located 20 feet from the Tiki Bar.

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Yup, that’s a real waterfall right there.

The views from our room and patio:

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Our Labrador was thrilled to be on the water again. She has never forgiven us for moving off the lake.

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A blue heron enjoying the morning quiet.

So what about the (Paleo) food?  Well, it turns out we had to bring ALL of our edibles with us.  I called ahead to the resort’s restaurant and asked if they had any gluten-free options on the menu.

“No.”

OK.  So can any items be modified, avoiding cross-contamination?

“No.”

So I spent Friday morning grilling grass-fed burgers and steak, frying tortillas and nightshade-free taco meat, and gathering fruits and veggies for side dishes and snacks.  And as most gatherings go, the only gluten- and dairy-free options were the fruit and veggie platters.  But truth be told, we ate better than everyone else!  (We just had to transport and store all of it.)

We’ll be doing it all over again in two years.  Lessons learned?

  • Don’t even think about getting a room anywhere near a Tiki Bar (a lack of sleep is decidedly NON-Paleo!)
  • Do the cooking a full day in advance.  It was cutting it close the morning of the trip – that meat needs enough time to chill for transport.  Same goes for any Paleo baked goods such as tortillas.
  • Bring some warm clothes even if the forecast is for hot weather – we forgot about the evening firepit, and Saturday was windy and cold despite the sunny forecast.
  • Do leave the phone chargers at home (as we did) to really unplug.
  • Maybe rent a larger vehicle?!  LOL  Oh wait…that might have a hitch…cancel that.
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Family Pic for the album