Sunday, October 30, 2016

Halloween Time at Disneyland

Last weekend I took a trip down to Southern California to one of my favorite places. Disneyland! I love seeing the Halloween decorations and I didn't get a chance to see them last year with all that was going on in my life so I decided that this year a trip was in order.

I planned this trip a few months ago and put the word out that I was going and anyone who felt like it was welcome to join me. One of my coworkers decided to go and my sister in law was able to come meet me for one day too. I was on a crack of dawn flight by myself which was all well and good when I booked it but put a few wrinkles in my plans in the end because of this whole broken foot thing.

I arrived at the park a few hours (which turned into 4 or 5 due to a delayed flight) before anyone else so due to the ever fun broken foot I decided to rent one of those motorized wheelchair/cart things. I have ridden in a wheelchair many times (thanks curve in my back) but have never used a motorized one before. Steering though a crowded park was an adventure but no one died.

My friend finally got there and we met up at Carthay Circle Lounge for a late lunch.  It was so hot out that day that I decided a Pimm's Punch was called for.  Such a nice refreshing drink on a hot day.

After a few hours in the hotel to beat the crowds and the heat we headed back to the park.  We got there just in time to see the Halloween fireworks from the tram waiting area.  Fireworks are always a favorite of mine.

Saturday we were there bright and early.  Thankfully I had a friend there this day so I didn't have to brave driving a motorized chair again. Yay for friends who will push you in a wheelchair!

I always love looking at the castle but after seeing it all done up and sparkly for the 60th anniversary celebration for a year it just looks like it is missing a bit of pizzazz right now.

One benefit of having to ride in a wheelchair is that many of the Fantasyland rides are not handicap accessible so you have to go in the exit. This makes for short or no lines at many of the rides. It doesn't work this way for all rides and most of the ones it does work for are in Fantasyland so I always try to ride everything when I have the opportunity.

My friend is a big Star Wars fan so we waited in line to see Darth Vader.  While I know this is just a person in a costume it was still kind of scary to have this very tall character talking to me and accusing me of things. Very realistic!

Funny story. So apparently if you know someone who is playing a character at the Frozen meet and greet there is a special code word you use to make sure you are put into the correct room with the person you know. We said this code word just as the characters were switching rooms so we ended up in the wrong room.  We took pictures with Anna and Elsa since we were there.

Once we were done with Anna and Elsa the cast member moved us to the other room where Elsa was being played by someone my friend knew. Apparently this is the way to get to take pictures with the characters twice! I wasn't complaining!

One night we went to dinner at Carthay Circle and as always it was fantastic.  I didn't take pictures of my food (fail) but I did manage to take a picture of my Poison Appletini complete with glowing poison apple. I am now the proud owner of a glowing poison apple.  Not sure what I am going to so with it but I will find someway to incorporate it into my decor next Halloween.

Instead of having desert at Carthay Circle we opted to stop for ice cream. A sink full of ice cream hit the spot!!

Sunday my sister in law was able to join me for most of the day at the park. Yay! The weatherman lies and it started raining part way through the day. Boo! Rain isn't bad if you are prepared for it but the weather report said no chance of rain so we were not prepared. Despite the rain I was super happy to see my sister in law and had a fabulous time riding rides with her.

Since it was still pretty rainy by dinnertime we needed something indoors.  We tried to have dinner at the Alfresco Tasting Terrace but apparently it is closed when it rains due to the floors getting slippery.  We ended up at the Carthay Circle Lounge again which was fine by me.  Again no pictures of the food but our pretty cocktails were a Pisco Sour and a Tequila Daisy.

Such fun seeing Disneyland all dressed up for Halloween.  Since I managed to get to Disneyland last year during the Christmas season I won't be disappointed if I don't make it this year but I am glad I got to see the Halloween decorations at least.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Halloween Decorations

In past years I have put up some kind of fall decoration sometime after Labor Day and then just added a few Halloween touches/moved things around. This year between prepping for our honeymoon and then going on our honeymoon I never got around to putting up fall decorations. I started my Halloween decorations from scratch this year.
I got this white pumpkin with the glittery handle at Home Goods earlier this year. The other side of the pumpkin is perfect for Thanksgiving so I will just turn it around after Halloween.  The cute trick or treat sign is from the dollar spot at Target last year or the year before.

This little display of leaves and gourds will probably stay up all the way through Thanksgiving.

Pretty sure this group of leaves is not meant to be a wreath but it was round so I hung it on the hook on the back of my front door. I will probably incorporate this somehow into my Thanksgiving decorations but for now it works as a wreath.

That sparkly pumpkin in the background is also a new addition to my Halloween decorations this year! Another Home Goods find while out shopping with a friend.

My favorite new addition this year is this fabulous table runner that is covered in spiderwebs. I love how the black and white of the spiderwebs goes so well with my wire pumpkins. For now it has to go on our coffee table but maybe by next year we will have a new place that has room for me to put the table runner on an actual full sized table.

As much as I love my new spiderweb table runner my favorite Halloween decoration is still my not so spooky purple spider to go with my sparkly pumpkins.

I am leaving my decorations up for another week or so and then it is time to switch them out for some Thanksgiving decorations.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Food in Munich

Rather than try to recap our fabulous honeymoon all in one post I have decided since I took pictures of almost all the food we ate to do one post about food and one post about our activities for each of the three cities we visited. Munich is up first

Our first night we had been traveling for many hours so we asked our hotel for a recommendation of a restaurant close to the hotel. They recommended a place a few blocks from the hotel and we were off. We were in Germany after all so we started our meal off with a beer.

My first meal in Germany was Kaese Spaetzle which was cheese spaetzle with fried onions and parsley on top. It also came with a side salad which was a nice way to get some veggies into a very carb heavy meal. The whole thing was delicious. You can't go too far wrong with cheese and something pastaish!

My husband had pork with dumplings and a side of some sort of slaw.  He enjoyed his meal. He was so excited to try all different kinds of German food and he loves meat and potatoes so this type of food is right up his ally.

Overall, despite the fact that we were super tired, we had a great first meal in Germany. A sign of many delicious meals to come for the rest of our time in Germany.

I did't take pictures of our breakfasts on the trip but our first full day in Germany we stopped for a morning snack of ice cream sundaes!

Not sure if you know this or not but in Germany they make amazingly awesome ice cream sundaes and sometimes they even top them with various liqueurs. Mine was a coffee flavored sundae and my husband had an amaretto one. We had ice cream many times on our trip but these were my favorites.

We were on a bus tour to see two castles on our second day so we ate a quick lunch before heading up to a castle for our tour.

Our tour got back fairly late and we were definitely fighting jet lag so we ended up going the same place for dinner on our second night that we had on our first. I had the same thing again and my husband had a mixed grill type of thing with potatoes and meat and veggies all mixed together.

We finished the evening off with a shared apple strudel. 

The next day was our day to visit the Octoberfest tents!


To accompany our beers we ordered a cheese plate, some sort of pickled sausage dish and a cup of dumpling soup.  The soup and the cheese plate were good but I was not crazy about the sausage.  I don't tend to like pickled things and this really just tasted like a hot dog with pickle juice on it.

After eating lunch it was time for a giant pretzel and another beer. As you can see this pretzel was seriously bigger than my head but it was oh so good.

The main tents were so crowded that evening that we ended up in one of the smaller less traditional tents for dinner. We ended up in the only tent to serve cocktails so after a few days of lots of beer I was happy to have a mojito.

My husband had a mixed meat and potato dish with a side salad while I had "pumpkin soup" with brown bread.  The quotes around pumpkin soup are there because apparently in Germany (and Austria) all winter squashes are called pumpkin when they are translated into English.  Not sure if different types of squashes have different names in German but while this was called pumpkin soup in reality it was butternut squash soup. Good thing I like pretty much all types of winter squash because this isn't the last time I ordered "pumpkin" something.

Our third full day we were on another bus tour.  We had our lunch in Rothenburg.

My dish was some sort of fried potato and cheese thing with a nice side salad while my husband had the specialty sausage of Rothenburg with potatoes.

For dinner this night we went to a place recommended by my friend Whitney and it was fantastic! This chanterelle mushroom dish with pretzel dumplings was my favorite thing I ate in Germany and possibly my favorite meal of the whole trip. Sooo good!

My husband had a mixed meat and potato skillet with an egg on it.  This was also one of his favorite meals of the trip.

For dessert we shared a stout tiramisu followed in the footsteps of everything else we ate here and was delicious.

The next day we stopped for lunch (and beer) on our way to an afternoon of museuming.

I had what was kind of like a lasagna with sausage patties in it topped with a nice thin gravy.  I have no idea what it was called but it was good.

Not sure what kind of meat my husband had at this meal but as many meals did it had a dumpling with it.

We stopped in the middle of the afternoon for an ice cream break. I had a scoop of chocolate chip and a scoop of berry while my husband had a scoop of chocolate and a scoop of chili chocolate. All of it was good but the berry and the chili chocolate were my faves.

After our day at the museums we wandered around to find someplace to eat dinner and ended up going to the same place as we had the night before because the food had been so good.

My husband had a pork knuckle and I had a mushroom dumpling with cheese. Yum! Not pictured but we had the same delicious stout tiramisu for dessert again.

Our last day in Munich we decided to have a lighter meal (with beer of course) so my husband had a carpaccio salad while I had a big bowl of "pumpkin" soup.

We finished off our lunch with a few scoops of ice cream and were off to have more adventures.

After almost a week of German food it was time for something a little bit different.  For our last dinner we went to this cute little Italian place.  We started off with a great roasted veggie and mozzarella appetizer. After many days of beer I had a glass (or two) of wine and my husband had a sparkling apple beverage.

His seafood pasta was good but I always enjoy a nice cream sauce so I was very happy with my mushroom and prosciutto pasta.

We woke up early the next morning and took the train to Salzburg to have more adventures...