Monday, July 15, 2019

another weekend in paradise (pier, that is)

with the hub off to vegas for his world series of poker weekend, the kids and i headed down to anaheim to check into paradise pier hotel for our own weekend of fun.  the check-in process was really easy, with half of it done by an ipad-wielding cast member while standing in line at the front desk and leaving nothing but swiping a credit card once it was our turn.  we were on the 13th floor (which i found a little odd, because i thought most hotels didn't have such a thing for superstitious folks), and the room was spacious, clean and nicely decorated.  i loved the pixar ball on the bed and remembered how people had posted about taking them home and then finding a $50 charge on their credit card later on. 

 we had a pretty fantastic view of california adventure:

back downstairs, i snapped a photo of the old lady that we always take whenever we stay at this hotel.  cracks me up every time.

just for fun, here's the other ones we've taken over the years.  so great:

of course, the bean wanted one too.

and then when we got to downtown disney and walked into the lego store, i had to do this. 

we browsed through our favorite shops and i eyed lots of fun new merchandise.

at california adventure, we decided to grab some drinks and snacks at alfresco tasting terrace, located upstairs right above the wine country trattoria restaurant.  we ordered the bruschetta:

the meatballs marinara:

charcuterie and cheese board:

and a few cocktails.  i don't actually remember what they all are, but i do know that the one on the far right is the blood orange mimosa, because that was mine.

when we were done, we headed into pixar pier to use the one fastpass we'd been able to secure - for the incredicoaster.

from there we decided to take our first-ever spin on jessie's critter carousel.

we wandered around a bit and then it was time to head across the esplanade into disneyland for our dinner reservation at carnation cafe on main street.  we ordered up some fried pickles, because they're delicious:

this is the chicken-fried chicken, served with mashed potatoes & gravy and veggies:

walt's chili:

and the "tv dinner," which offered gravy-smothered meatloaf with mashed potatoes as the main entree with a savory scone and peas & carrots on the side, plus a delicious brownie for dessert.

because we rarely stay at the resort, we wanted to take advantage of being so close to the parks and stay later than we usually do.  except that it was a busy saturday evening, and the crowds were overwhelming and a little annoying.  and so we decided to head back out to downtown disney to see if we could snag a spot at the black tap to try some of their outrageously decadent milkshakes.  the line wasn't too terribly long for once, and as we waited to be seated we took a menu to see what our options were.

the "sweet 'n salty" was a delicious peanut butter and chocolate concoction that the bean and i shared:

the old lady and her special friend went with the strawberry shortcake.

and then when we got back to the hotel, we decided to go up and take a look at the fitness center.

the kids decided to change into workout gear and head back down to burn some calories, while i opted to stay in the room to catch the "world of color" show from the window.  the soundtrack for the show was playing on one of the channels on the hotel tv, and it was fun to watch from the comfort of my bed.

a few minutes after the show ended, the kids came back and got ready for bed.  we had an early wake-up call the next morning, so we were all tucked in before 11.  party animals, we are.

Friday, July 12, 2019

it's time for dodgers baseball!

so i mentioned that cousin seven, her live-in love and their dog came to stay with us for a few days.  it was really fun to have them over because we don't get to see them very often, and we rarely get to have houseguests.  almost all of our cousins had committed to going to filipino night at dodger stadium, which is also a pretty rare occasion.  it usually takes something huge, like a wedding or a funeral to get everyone all in one place at the same time.

we were still experiencing june gloom at the time, and so when i hit up target for something to wear i ended up picking out this long-sleeved top for the nighttime game.

somehow the traffic on the way to dodger stadium wasn't terrible on that friday evening, and with the prepaid parking voucher i bought online we found a pretty good spot pretty easily.

the hub had scored himself a spot at the world series of poker in vegas that weekend, and so we invited the bean's BFF to take his place.  while they're not really baseball fans, they were both pretty excited to spend the evening together since they hadn't seen much of each other since school let out.

our group of 20+ cousins and plus-ones took up a good amount of this section facing left field.  we had a pretty good view of the game:

our tickets included these souvenir dodger jerseys, and most of us put ours on to watch the game:

while i had a classic dodger dog:

the old lady opted for this cheeseburger that was topped with a grilled hot dog.

there was other stuff too, like micheladas for them and cotton candy and ice cream for me and the girls.  eating is the best at baseball games.

when the game ended (with a dodger win, yay!), we asked someone sitting in front of us to snap a group photo for us.  because if you don't get a picture, did it really happen?

and then a bunch of them headed down to the field to get a good spot for friday night fireworks:

and when the show was over we gathered again and took a bunch more pictures before everyone went their separate ways.

i'd forgotten how much fun it is to go to the stadium and watch a game live.  maybe we'll head out at least once more before summer comes to an end.

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