Failing, Football and (TGI) Fridays

I am a weak, weak man. I have the backbone of an amoeba and the integrity of a politician. Having committed to something in the sanctity of a blog post, I have reneged, defaulted and failed that promise in spectacular style.

What is this heinous crime?

I booked another ADR.

I know what I said. But honestly, it makes sense, and I should know having spent more time than I should justifying it to myself before doing the deed. Sure, we need to be on a tighter budget on this trip, and on-site dining is expensive but…..but….well, I wanted to.

The justification goes like this.

I have booked it on my birthday, therefore, it qualifies as a treat for me. We will (of course) be in Epcot all day, right though to Reflections of Earth, for the last time ever on one of my birthdays, and that deserves commemorating. We therefore don’t want to be having to leave Epcot to find an off site eatery. That takes two hours plus out of the day, and what finally pushed it over the edge……I loved the pizza at Via Napoli last year and I want to eat it again.

To be exact, everyone loved the pizza at Via Napoli, and that plus its location right in the middle of my traditional World Showcase birthday pilgrimage makes all sorts of sense. So there we go.

To be honest….

Joey Im Not Even Sorry GIF - Joey ImNotEvenSorry Friends GIFs

Other than a needless countdown update (107 days folks), there is little else to report holiday planning wise from this week. On Tuesday we went out celebrate Rebecca’s birthday at a newly opened TGI Fridays. It’s almost American-ness peaked our anticipation for the two weeks of awesome eating we have in store. Freddie in particular is, based on his reaction to every dish’s arrival, which was a “WOW” and eyes like dinner plates, is going to have his mind blown. One year at his age makes such a huge difference in him knowing what is going on of course. At my age, it’s reversed and thankfully not (yet) quite as drastic.

I went full American and had nachos (yes, I know….) and a burger but shamefully I could not manage a dessert. Although, to reassure you all, I did manage a slither of birthday cake instead…..I’m not that much of an amateur. It is safe to say though that in my advancing years my appetite is not what it once was. That’s a good thing, as my ability to gain weight is without rival and if I could eat like I used to in my twenties I would be featured on one of those “My 600lb Life” programmes and need to be winched out of bed every morning.

 

Those of a football disposition may raise an eyebrow at the timing of this celebration. You may know that I am a life-long Liverpool fan, and Tuesday night saw the second leg of the Champions League semi-final against Barcelona. Now, after the first leg, missing the second to celebrate Rebecca’s birthday, which by the way, was never a competition, I like football, but it doesn’t compete with things like one of the girl’s birthdays, wasn’t too hard as the mighty reds were 3-0 down and very unlikely to go through.

Having seen a few Liverpool comebacks over the years I did record the game on the off chance something miraculous happened. I decided to do a “Likely Lads” (ask your Dad) and try not to know the result until I got back home, so that I could watch the game “live”. I didn’t remove my phone from my pocket for the entire meal and briefed everyone else not to breathe a word of any news they may come across.

To cut a long story short, I found myself sat in my front room, past midnight, being a little bit more emotional about a football game than a man of my age should be as the final whistle blew (two hours after it actually did). It does strange things is all I can say. If you get it, you get it, if you don’t, you’ll think I’m an idiot.

That is all I have time for today folks. We are off to meet Rebecca, Tom and Freddie at the local park before I settle in for more Liverpool related nail biting. I am even less hopeful of a miracle today, but it’s the hope that kills you in football.

Till the next time……

Baldy Bean

Bean is bald. It isn’t something in the water in the Mkingdon household, which is a good thing for Louise and the girls. She has been dispatched for her first ever hair cut yesterday and returned looking like a different dog.

Here’s the before shot….

and the after….

She can be a little highly strung at times so we did warn the groomer beforehand. When Louise picked her up he couldn’t speak more highly of her. Apparently she just stood there wagging her tail at him for the whole experience. We’re clearly doing something wrong.

So after that landmark yesterday afternoon, last night Rebecca reported another to us. At just three months old, Freddie rolled over for the first time last night. Based on the rate at which he is growing, eating and developing I think he might be walking next week. By the time we go to WDW in late August he may be tall enough to ride Big Thunder Mountain.

Speaking of which, had I mentioned we are going to Florida on holiday? I may have. I have mentioned a bit of plan tinkering recently so it is time for a re-share of the current version of the plan. This may and will change still I think, mainly if we can’t the ADRs we want when we want them, but here is the current state of play.

29th August

Travel Day. A ridiculous wake up time to get to the airport far too early. Expensive breakfast, expensive duty free buying, nine hours in a metal tube with a ten month old, a long line at immigration, a big shop at the supermarket and dinner at Outback. That lovely feeling of returning home and the joyous prospect of two weeks stretching out before us.

30th August

Up in the early hours, Magic Kingdom of course. Freddie’s first view of the castle. Lunch at around 10am, some rides, a parade and then dinner at Whispering Canyon.

31st August

My birthday! Some rest in the morning as the second day hits us hard as usual. Mid afternoon eats at Beaches & Cream and then an evening around World Showcase with ROE to end my birthday as should be the law.

1st September

Some more rest in the morning as we will have been out till 10ish the night before and bodies will still be adjusting. Epcot again for a few Fastpasses and hopefully an ADR at Via Napoli.

2nd September

A proper official rest day. It’s Labor Day so parks are to be avoided. Pool, reading, relaxing….for about three hours in the morning then we are off to Citywalk for lunch at Toothsome. A wander around Citywalk and maybe some shopping at a mall to build up an appetite for dinner at Applebees.

3rd September

Enough rest now. A full on day at DHS, including an ADR at The Brown Derby.

4th September

A rest day of sorts, with brunch at Keke’s. We’ll find something to do in the afternoon, or go back to the pool trying to get ourselves hungry for our visit to Cowfish that evening.

5th September

Another full theme park day at DAK. Lunch at S’atuli Canteen and our usual dinner at Yak & Yeti. Depending on energy levels we will either stay for Rivers of Light or head for home and Jellyrolls may be an option for those without young children! If we don’t do it this night we’ll do it another for sure.

6th September

Resting again with maybe a wander around Celebration in the afternoon/early evening. An early dinner at Olive Garden and then the plan is MNSSHP.

7th September

Epcot today. More Fastpasses and doing as many rides as possible before a quick shower and change at the villa before heading off to Teak for some Doughnut Burger goodness.

8th September

Typhoon Lagoon today until the usual late afternoon storm sends us back to the villa. Dinner at The Cheesecake Factory.

9th September

Back to DHS today, mopping up stuff we’ve missed and repeating the good stuff. Disney Springs in the evening and a possible dinner at Edison.

10th September

A lazy morning, and a brunch at Hash House a Go Go. Shopping probably at a mall or back to Disney Springs. Should our bodies be able to take it, Bahama Breeze for dinner.

11th September

Last full day and of course that means Magic Kingdom, ending with parades, fireworks and tears.

12th September

Travel day. I will inevitably have to buy a suitcase. Brunch at Toojays before some last minute shopping/browsing before heading to the airport contemplating the horror of the return to normality and work.

13th September

I begin work on the next trip, convincing Louise it is the right thing to do.

Now, there’s a lot of rest in there, which is intentional. With Freddie in mind I need to recognise that the theme park commando approach may not be an option, and getting ready and out in the morning may be more challenging, if that is possible, having had Louise and two girls in tow all these years. If we feel like doing a bit more on some of those days we can, but best to plan sensibly I think.

This compromised approach does not apply to eating. That is still the usual he who dares wins tactic and we’ll be cheating death if we eat everywhere we plan to. Somewhere in that lot we want to try a “snack” at Voodoo Doughnuts too.

It still feels like there is work to do on the plan if I am honest but that’s OK. I’m pretty good at it and there’s time yet. It’s all part of the magic!

Till the next time…..


Discount Disney Tickets

Word To Your Mother

So here’s a very quick, fairly late post due to a busy day doing the Mum thing. A day of tidying, (for me) peeling spuds and (for Louise) cooking ended with a meal for both Mums and my Dad. Alas Rebecca had to work, with it being Mother’s Day as the restaurant at which she waitresses was booked to the rafters. Emily should have been working too but a bout of tonsillitis has kept her at home for the past few days. I don’t think she was too upset!

The week just gone has been too full of work for my liking but also contained my second rehearsal with Mustard. It went well, however the next time we play together it will be in front of an audience. Yes, that is as scary as it sounds. The 21st of March is my first gig. I’ve learnt about thirty songs and played all of them at least once with the rest of the band. What could possibly go wrong? It’ll be fun that’s for sure.

In CRP news, Emily’s visa came back this week and seeing it pasted into her passport was surreal and exciting in equal measure. We’ve now bought her medical insurance for her first 120 days until the Disney Cast Member one kicks in and she has now started to gather stuff together as a pre-cursor to actually packing! She has procured the essentials of course like a bikini and that play suit she loves from Forever 21 or one of those other young lady’s clothing websites.

She has also fulfilled her requirement as surrogate trip planner by securing all the ADRs we wanted.

ADRs

With Crystal Palace in the bag, she added Be Our Guest, Rose and Crown on┬ámy birthday and a fun night at Whispering Canyon. With that, we’re done.

On the subject I raised last week of collating the (hopefully) numerous photos of folks meeting Emily in the UK pavilion, I think flexibility is the key. Not everyone has every app, and so I don’t want to restrict the “project” to twitter or instagram, so if you get a photo of and/or with Emily then just get it to me somehow. My contact details are on this blog, you can do it on The Dibb (I’ll probably start a thread for the posting of such photos), post it on the Mkingdon Facebook page or any other social media you can find me on. My current thinking is that I’ll do a Pinterest board of them all.

Louise has just two weeks to go on her three year nursing course. That too is hard to take in. Everything is happening at once! After three years of hard slog, blood sweat and tears it is almost all over. So on that subject of the Mother of this household, I shall bring this brief, rushed and inadequate Mother’s Day blog to an end.

Till the next time….