Saturday, February 18, 2006

Back from Disney Part I

Yes, it was AWESOME! Okay, we had a couple of days of rain, but our temps hung out mostly in the lower 70's. Not bad considering it's now 2 degress in South Bend!!! Well, I thought I'd share a few photos from our trip.

The second day at Magic Kingdom, Anna and Sophie thought they'd "goof" around a little.

And yes, a pic with the BIG CHEESE himself!

"Why don't you come with me little girls - on a magic carpet ride!?"

And finally, THE RIDE of the vacation for the Vukmirovich family. Did I mention that we went on this ride NINE times! Yes, NINE times! We got soaked only about 6 of the 9. Most fun though.

5 cool things on the trip:
1. The Disney Dining Plan - this is the last I'll mention it, but anyone going to Disney MUST use this plan. SO WORTH what you pay. We truly ate like kings and queens. Le Cellier in Canada at Epcot was a great recommend by our friend Lindsay. Great service, great food, and available through the dining plan. Great Filet and New York Strip.
2. The $11.99 refills for life mug at any of the Disney resorts. You can bring this cup back over and over until you're old and grey and it doesn't cost any more. Good deal.
3. Expedition Everest at Animal Kingdom - check out for a cool interactive site.

Pic from the start of the ride. Based on the ascent to the top. Watch out for the YETI!

The top of Everest

This is the top of the ride where the YETI has destroyed the track! No way to go except BACKWARD! Yep, you kick it into gear going backward on this ride. Mostly in darkness from this point on. By far, the coolest coaster I've experienced at Disney.
Also,check out how Disney just promoted this Pretty over the top, no pun intended!
4. World Showcase Players at Epcot. These people do such a great job with improv. Our kids loved it.

5. The beauty of seeing Sophie play in the ocean for the first time! What a great example of full commitment to the moment. She didn't mind that the water temp in the Atlantic was 59 degrees! It was really beautiful.

More later.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

My Taffy Valentine

One cool tradition in Lisa's family has been that of making taffy. The picture below shows Lisa and I making a batch in our garage.

It's pretty simple really. Very few ingredients - karo syrup, sugar, butter, whipping cream, parafin (yeah, that's wax that you ingest), and a little vanilla + nuts for flavoring. Then you heat it up to 252 degrees - no more, no less or it is rock hard or stickier than duct tape. After it's cooked, the taffy is then cooled on a marble slab. Wait a while and then the pulling begins. Two people start "working" it - technical term in the taffy industry - which helps it cool. Later, after it hardens some, you begin to take turns pulling it on the taffy hook shown in the upper left corner of the pic. Finally, after it is the right consistency you take it inside to cut and wrap it. Of course a few tastes here and there are a must.

The great thing about taffy is that it's not meant to be made alone. The saying "it takes two to tango" also works for "it takes two to taffy". The best part is doing this together. Lisa is the love of my life and there is no one I would rather pull taffy with. She makes my heart sing. She is "My Taffy Valentine" - so sweet! I love you honey!

Friday, February 10, 2006

Hey from FLA!

Just wanted to say HEY from the land of oranges, palm trees, and retirees. We're having a great time relaxing from our vacation at Disney. This sounds odd to take a vacation from your vacation, but after each day walking around 5 miles and running on occasion to catch a bus, we need it! Anna and Sophie absolutely loved Splash Mountain at Magic Kingdom! We literally rode it NINE times!

We liked our hotel, but Anna would like to try All-Star Movies if we come back next year. More updates and pix when we get back!