Sunday, September 30, 2007

Orlando 2007

O.K. I am back again after a long hiatus. I would have posted sooner but you know things happen. I stayed in many hotels while in New York and the internet access was either sketchy or I was too tired to bother. I have some wonderful photos I will post later for Niagara Falls. But for now I will talk about my Orlando trip.

To sum up the entire trip I will say one word! EXHAUSTING! I will try to pace myself better the next time I go and try not to do everything in one day. It isn't going to happen and if you try you will push your body to its limits as well as your sanity! I did have a wonderful time but I ended up with swollen feet every evening.

On Monday we went to MGM Studios. I had a good time but I definitely think this park is my least favorite. I liked them all so don't get me wrong but I think I expected more. One of the rides I would have enjoyed called the "Rockin Rollercoaster" featuring Aerosmith was closed. But I was able to do the Tower of Terror and several shows. I spent the day taking pictures of myself in different hats around the park. I had scrapbook pages on my mind the entire time. It was a good time but I was ready to go around 5pm. My friend had to stay to see this show they do at the end. I stayed with her and enjoyed the show. It was worth the wait. Here is my favorite photo of the day.

I know it's one of the monsters from Monster's Inc but I am not sure which one. I just love the expression on my face! LOL!

On Tuesday I went to the Animal Kingdom. My friend really wanted to get there early. She read this was the best time to see the animals on the safari. Early morning is when they are most active. It was kind of funny to see them all laying there sleeping. I couldn't help but chuckle because they were anything BUT active. Overall it was a fun experience. I saw some wonderful shows which included "It's tough being a bug" and "Finding Nemo". Both shows were very good. I thought "Dinosaur"and "Expedition Everest" were the best rides in the park. But everything was great. The park closed at 5pm (thank goodness) and I was able to return to the resort and relax that evening. This is my favorite photo of the day

I met one of the "villagers" from Africa. He was playing this instrument and walking around. Kinda cool! I have some photos from the rides I did but I have yet to scan those. I will do them later!

On Wednesday we went to Typhoon Lagoon. I think this was the best day of all. It had been hot all week and very close to unbearable. It was nice to run around all day and play like a kid! I had so much fun on the slides and other water rides. I could go back to Florida and just do water parks all week. It's actually a serious thought! LOL! I did everything they had for adults to do and enjoyed the wave pook immensely. If you ever go to Orlando you must do the waterparks. It's too much fun. Here is my favorite picture.
This is me carrying the raft for the Crush n Gusher. It's for two people and me and my friend Becky really enjoyed this ride. It was the first one we did! We did it twice and the last time it threw us from the raft at the end and she landed on top of me. Too funny! LOL! I don't look so bad in my swimsuit either on this picture. In person you wouldn't want me to stand sideways! LOL! I like this swimsuit but the girls had a tendency to pop out at inconvenient moments. I really had to watch it! LOL!
On Thursday we went to the Magic Kingdom. It was wonderful of course! I took many photos and rode everything I could find. We saw a couple of parades and took some really cool photos. I wanted to take pictures with the characters but I always found them too late. I was disappointed. I did buy myself a Minnie Mouse hat and ran around like a big kid all day. It was funny but I got a lot of attention with that hat from kids and talking garage recepticles!

I also got to see something I really wanted to see the last time I was there in 1997. I missed it and I wasn't too happy. It was Tinkerbell flying from Cinderella's castle. I finally saw it! I was so happy about that I didn't care about the crowd or my aching feet! LOL. Here is my favorite picture from this day.
Yes! It's Tinkerbell in my hand! I couldn't resist this photo opportunity with the park photographers! I definitely got a CD before I left Orlando. I love this photo. I can't wait for my Mom to see!

On Friday I went to Universal Studios Islands of Adventure. That was a lot of fun. We rode all the water rides, I rode the roller coasters (my friend only rode one mild roller coaster) and saw the shows. It was a blast! I think my favorite ride of the day was Ripshaw falls. I really like way the boat goes down the chute. It's fun! We took lots of pictures and I got several shots with characters like Woody Woodpecker, Two of the X-Men (actually the girls Storm and I didn't know the other one's name) and Spiderman! It was a great day. We ended the day at the City walk at Margaritaville with drinks (I had a midori sour) and appetizers. The park closes at 7pm but the City Walk is open late. It had started to rain so we left. I got plenty of fun pictures ( I kept thinking of scrapbook pages I wanted to do) and I cannot wait to work on them. Here is my favorite picture of the day.

This is my favorite ride called Ripshaw Falls. It's a ride with Dudley Do-right as the theme. You remember that cartoon right? I like this ride because some unexpected things happened. I think that makes the ride more exciting.

On Saturday we went to Epcot. I was able to ride "Soarin" (highly recommended), Journey Into Imagination with Figament and we saw Honey, I Shrunk the Audience. I also rode the boat rides in Mexico and Norway. All were well worth the time.

We saved Epcot to the last day because they were havin a Food and Wine Festival. It's like a Taste of all the countries. We have these festivals here in Chicago to showcase the different restaurants in the area. It's was really fun. There was a seminar on Himalyan Salt I was able to attend and I got to try different salts to see the differences and got some really great tips on how to prepare dishes using it. After the seminar I left to go try some of the dishes. I got to try Boxty with Bacon Chips and Kerrygold Garlic and Fresh Herb Butter from Ireland, Coconut Indian Rice Pudding from India, Bobotie with Mango Chutney from South Africa, Seared Buffalo with Scalloped Wild Onions from Oklahoma, Escargot Persillade en Brioche with Sparkling Pomegrante Kir from France and last but not least Mofungo from Dominican Republic. I didn't hit a bad note on any of my selections. It was all good! It started to poor raining after I got my Mofongo and I was drenched. Here is my favorite picture of the day.

The photographer took many pictures of me at Epcot. I think he had a bit of a crush on me! LOL! I like this one but I have several. I have more with Tinkerbell in my hands again.
Overall this trip was a successful and exhausting trip. I of course want to go back and do more things I didn't get a chance to do. But for now I will relive the fun moments and start working on my scrapbook pages. I was imagining them while I was taking photos and coming up with really cool titles.
Ta Ta for now!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Flavorful Friday

I made this recipe after receiving a Taste of Home magazine in the mail. This recipe appealed to me because I like cake but I do not care for frosting. I know its weird but its true. Anyway I love pound cake and this looked like another version of one. I made it and loved it. I took some to work and shared with co-workers and they were very pleased with the results. They always asked when I would make another one. I haven't made one in a very long time. I think I might make it some time this fall.
I thought the picture made it look like cornbread but it doesn't taste or have the texture of corn bread. It's a very delicious cake. You will not be disappointed. I suggest you go to the website and do a search if you want some frosting or topping for it. I saw one for a struesel like topping. The link is above!

Hot Milk Cake

4 eggs
2 cups sugar
2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2-1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-1/4 cups milk
10 tablespoons butter or margarine


PREP 20 min.
COOK 30 min.
TOTAL 50 min.
In a mixing bowl, beat eggs at high speed until thick, about 5 minutes. Gradually add sugar, beating until mixture is light and fluffy. Combine flour and baking powder; add to batter with vanilla and beat at low speed until smooth. In a saucepan, heat milk and butter just until the butter melts, stirring occasionally. Add to batter, beating until combined. Pour into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° for 30 to 35 minutes or until cake tests done. Cool on a wire rack.

Yield: 12-16 servings.

Nutrition Facts: 1 serving (1 piece) equals 254 calories, 9 g fat (5 g saturated fat), 75 mg cholesterol, 154 mg sodium, 39 g carbohydrate, trace fiber, 4 g protein.

Bon Appetit!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

My travel list

I made a list of all the places I wanted to visit in my lifetime years ago. I have slowly made a visit to some of these places. I wanted to share.

Alaska - I went here several years ago. I actually got a chance to see the Iditarod. It was so cool! I loved it. I also got a chance to ski and go snowshoeing. I also took a cruise to see Orcas, sea lions and sea otters. Really cool.

Africa - haven't done - I want to go on an African Safari. Especially in the Kenya region. I want to go for three weeks minimum.

Spain - I actually went to Spain with my ski club. It was fun. I went skiing, stayed in Grenada, Costa del Sol and Madrid. I even had a chance to visit Seville. I would love to go back and visit Barcelona and Ibiza! Party on!

All the Little House on the Prairie Home sites - O.K. I know this is a bit weird for most people but I enjoyed reading all of her books ( more than five times each). If you have never read any of these books please do. I enjoy the fact the simple things in life made them very happy. I have visited two of the sites so far. Here is the list.

DeSmet, South Dakota - visited - I actually was able to visit the Laura Ingalls Wilder Museum and the house Pa built in town. It was really nice.
Missouri - haven't visited
Burr Oak, Iowa - I found this one on the way to a canoe trip. It the one place she never wrote about in her stories. I think it was one of the worst times in her young life.
Pepin, Wisconsin - haven't visited

Niagara Falls - visited - I went here first in high school on a spring break trip. We arrived very early in the morning before day break and we couldn't see the falls because of a dense fog. By the time we left we were able to see the rapids and that was it.

Last month I was able to visit the US side of the falls and do a tour. On the tour was a ride on the Maid of the Mist, Cave of the Winds, Horseshoe Falls, Bridal Veil Falls and more. I plan on going back this weekend and doing the Canadian side of the falls. It should be fun. It's more commercial on that side!

Japan - haven't visited - Actually my ski club is going for a ski trip with a side trip to China. I would love to go but money is an issue. I still need to get an air conditioner for my home! LOL!

New Orleans, Louisiana - I went to New Orleans once. I had a good time. I want to go again.

Orlando, Florida - I was in Orlando twice. I had a chance to visit Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure and the Magic Kingdom. I wanted to do more Disney parks but I didn't get a chance when I went the first time. However, the last week of this month I will be there and get a chance to do all the Disney Parks I never had a chance to visit.

Yellowstone National Park - haven't been there. I can't wait to go.

Glacier National Park - haven't been there

Mexico - haven't been - This wouldn't be just a beach trip for me. I want to go to the ruins and learn more about the culture.

Costa Rica - haven't been - I want to hike in Arenal and do some whitewater rafting. The parasite issue scares me terribly.

Brazil - haven't been

Toronto, Canada - I went in high school for two days. It was nice. I want to go back again and see more.

Aspen, Colorado - I went two and a half years ago. It was right after my Dad died. I wasn't in my best place and I couldn't have a good time. I bought new ski boots and they were killing my feet. I also was there with a real pain in the ass and I will never go on a trip with her again! LOL! I will go back one day.

Wisconsin Dells - I live in the Chicagoland area and I have never visited Wisconsin Dells in the summer. I have been in the winter and if you know anything about the dells you know its closed down after the summer. Many of my friends went and had a good time. I always wanted to go. One summer!

Maine - I would love to go in the fall to see the beautiful colors

Switzerland - haven't been. My ski club has gone several times. I want to ski here and buy wine and cheese! LOL!

Nashville, Tennesee - haven't been - I want to go to Opryland.

Disneyland, California - haven't been - I still have some repressed issues from childhood I guess

Grand Canyon - I went twice. Once I did a day tour from Las Vegas to an Indian Reservation on the western side of the Grand Canyon. It was nice. The second time I went I flew into Phoenix and drove to Flagstaff and stayed at a hostel. It was fun. I met some wonderful people I kept in touch with for some time. I drove up to the Grand Canyon and spent the day roaming around enjoying the views. It was absolutely surreal! I would love to go back to do the northern section next. I also got a chance to visit Sedona and several state parks.

San Diego, California - haven't been - I want to go to the zoo, Seaworld and Tiawana!

I also want to visit all 50 states. I have visited most but I really want to visit them all and do at least one state park and one city in each. I will make a list of the ones I have visited.

Great Smoky Mountains - haven't visited

Savannah, Georgia - haven't visited

That's all I remember. I don't have the list readily available with me. That's the way it always goes.

I hope you all have lists of some travel goals. It's fun to think about places and things you can do. I hope you make a list if you don't have one.


Monday, September 10, 2007


Are you a list person? I am! I have lists of everything and I carry them everywhere I go. I often find myself adding to current lists and starting a new list for something new. Does anyone do the same?

One of the reasons I make lists is to make sure I remember and do everything I need to do. I often do not finish everything on my list. I also loose or misplace my lists. But I don't stop making them. I wonder if it is some form of OCD.

Well one of the reasons I brought this up is to make sure I have something to talk about at all times on my blog. I think my lists are pretty interesting even if I say so myself. I wonder if anyone else has any interesting lists to share with us and maybe they could discuss them with everyone on their own blogs.

I thought I would just list some of my current lists here to share. Please tell me yours too.

List of Books on Tapes I plan on getting for my car trips

List of places I want to visit in my lifetime

Lists of things I would like to purchase for my home

A grocery list

A list of recipes I want to try

A list of things I want to write about in my blog

A Christmas card list

A gift for Xmas list

A list of things I need to do for my job

A list of things for a garage sale

A list of things I would like to learn

A list of websites and the URL

A list of my expenses (also called a budget)

A list of people (called an address book)

Lists of blogs I enjoy reading.

List of things to be done at my Mother's home

List of things to do with the money I win in the lottery (yes I do plan on winning, my time is coming)

List of television shows I care to watch

Lists of patterns purchased for sewing

Lists of crocheting patterns I want to try

I think I will start posting my lists and why I created them. I think they are quite fun too. They are mental wish lists! I love it!

Have fun!

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Scrumptious Saturday

I thought I would post another recipe for everyone. This recipe is a wonderful breakfast dish I had at a scrapbook retreat in southern Indiana. I loved this french toast! I never had anything like it. a stuffed french toast! Totally yummy! I am not a big french toast fan so this was a very good recipe in my opinion.
It's seems simple enough to make (I have never made it). I would love to make it one day when I am off my diet (which seems to be never).
Bon Appetit!

Almond Cream Cheese French Toast

1-8oz package of Cream Cheese
1 teaspoon Almond Extract
1/3 of 8oz Cool Whip Container
1/4 to 1/2 cup almond slices

4 eggs

Other Ingredients:

Brownberry Honey White Bread
Powdered Sugar


Spread the filling onto one slice of bread. Do not spread within 1/4 inch from the outside edge. Place second slice on top and press to seal. Dip sandwich in egg mixture and immediately transfer to skillet. Cook until brown. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Serve with syrup.