ICE ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas at Gaylord Palms Resort

IMG_5676

Once again, ICE is back at Gaylord Palm Resort in Kissimmee Florida thru January 3.  Featuring ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, you will experience an unforgettable winter wonderland.  This amazing showcase uses nearly 2 million pounds of  ice, hand-carved into vibrant ice sculptures.

ICE-Sculptuers

Plus make sure you look for the On the Blocks ICE bar.  I had the best drink there which helped to warm my insides !

ice-bar

Also, guests can experience the adrenaline of Alpine Rush Snow Tubing – an 18’ 8-lane giant snow hill created with 1.5 million pounds of real Florida snow.  This is SO MUCH fun.  Kyle and I raced on the way down… I WON !

FullSizeRender (19)

And don’t miss the all-new Cirque Dreams Unwrapped show at the Emerald Bay Stage. Be dazzled by an array of seasonal characters brought to life in a dreamscape of imaginative costumes and creativity, while stunning feats of showmanship are unwrapped, performed on stage and in the air, leaving audiences on the edge of their seats.  The entire family can enjoy this uniquely inspired 25-minute Christmas dream presented with the Broadway style and inventive theatrics for which Cirque Dreams is renowned.

cirque

Photo op with the cast after the show

Plus new this year is the Elf on the Shelf® Scavenger Hunt which will ignite your inner sleuth and take you on a journey throughout the holiday-clad hotel. Participants will follow clues and scan the hotel to spot the 10 scout elves who have landed at Gaylord Palms. By solving puzzles and finding all of the elves, guests will reveal the elves’ names so they can report back to Santa. All families that complete the scavenger hunt will win a special prize.

Mr. and Mrs. Claus will also be a part of the festivities. Photos with Santa will take place in Santa’s Workshop located in Alpine Village and Mrs. Claus will be a part of the all-new Brunch with Mrs. Claus at the award-winning Villa de Flora.  Alpine Village, the holiday attraction hub, will also feature the Gingerbread Decorating Corner presented by PEEPS ®, Snowy’s Snack Shack and holiday shopping galore.

Packages are on sale today. For more information and to purchase tickets, go to ChristmasatGaylordPalms.com.
Gaylord Palms Resort is located five minutes from the gates of Walt Disney World at 6000 W. Osceola Parkway, Kissimmee, FL 34746.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full Disclosure Policy

Disney on Ice Celebrates 100 Years of Magic

Disney on Ice celebrates 100 Years of Magic Blended Art

Last night I had the extreme pleasure of attending the Disney on Ice 100 Years of Magic show at the Amway Arena in Orlando, Fl.  Even though I have teenagers, they were so excited to go.  This is definitely a show for all ages !!!

FullSizeRender (55)

Mouse-ter of Ceremonies, Mickey Mouse, lead a parade of more than 50 beloved characters starring Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy and featuring an ensemble of Disney Princesses including Cinderella, Rapunzel, Ariel, Snow White and Tiana.

disneyonice-2

The wintry wonderland of Disney’s Frozen also came to life with Anna, Elsa, and the hilarious Olaf, as they discovered that true love is the greatest magic of all. Exciting moments from Disney•Pixar’s Finding Nemo, Disney’s Aladdin and Beauty and the Beast will leave the whole family with memories to last a lifetime.

disneyonice-3

The legacy of Disney is displayed through 14 classic and modern stories in this epic production that features an international team of award-winning figure skaters, high-energy choreography and a breathtaking set. With over 30 melodious masterpieces such as “Let It Go!,” “You’ve Got A Friend in Me” and “Hakuna Matata,” Disney On Ice celebrates 100 Years of Magic is the ultimate Disney fan experience.

disneyonice-1

And make sure you bring a little spending cash because there are lots of great souvenirs to choose from such as Tshirts, light-up wands, dolls, and other toys.

FullSizeRender (54)

For a complete list of tour dates, visit the Disney On Ice website and stay current on the latest developments through social media:

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full Disclosure Policy

LEGOLAND Theme Park – Florida Resident Special

legoland-entrance

Florida Residents can enjoy a special deal on 1 day single park and 1 day combo water park tickets with the “I Love LEGOLAND” Promotion.

This offer will give Florida residents 33% off ticket purchases made online only through 2/22/15 for dates available through June 5, 2015.

** not valid on past purchases or to be combined with other offers

You can check out my review of LEGOLAND Florida HERE

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full Disclosure Policy

Universal Orlando Mardi Gras Concert Line Up

mardi-gras

I absolutely LOVE going to the Mardi Gras concerts at Universal Orlando.  They are free with your paid admission (or if you have an annual pass you can go for free).

Who are you most excited to see ?  I would have to say Styx, Heart and the B52s (does that show my age ???)

FEB 7 (SAT) –  OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN

FEB 14 (SAT) –  JESSIE J

FEB 15 (SUN) –  BARENAKED LADIES

FEB 21 (SAT) –  KELLY CLARKSON

FEB 28 (SAT) –  HEART

MAR 7 (SAT) –  TRACE ADKINS

MAR 13 (FRI) –  To Be Announced

MAR 14 (SAT) –  STYX

MAR 15 (SUN) –  AMERICAN AUTHORS

MAR 20 (FRI) –  BECKY G

MAR 21 (SAT) –  YANDEL

MAR 22 (SUN) –  THE B-52s

MAR 28 (SAT) –  To Be Announced

APRIL 4 (SAT) –  THE ALL-AMERICAN REJECTS

APRIL 11 (SAT) –  THE BAND PERRY

APRIL 18 (SAT) –  TREY SONGZ

 

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full Disclosure Policy

2015 Busch Gardens & Sea World Preschool Pass

seaworld-buschgardens

Busch Gardens® Tampa is kicking off 2015 with great ways to save….

Adventure Island Fun Card FREE, with a Busch Gardens Fun Card Purchase

For a limited time, guests can receive an Adventure Island® Fun Card FREE with the purchase of a Busch Gardens Fun Card, which lets guests pay for a day and visit both parks now through 2015. Enjoy the thrills of Busch Gardens through Dec. 31, 2015 and all the water-soaked fun of Adventure Island’s 2015 season, including the park’s newest family thrill slide, Colossal Curl™.

The two-park Fun Card includes admission to an incredible lineup of events including Busch Gardens Tampa’s Real Music Series™, the inaugural Food & Wine Festival, Summer Nights, Christmas Town™ and Adventure Island’s Island Nights. Price does not include tax and service fees. Visit buschgardens.com for more information.

FREE 2015 SeaWorld and Busch Gardens Preschool Pass

Busch Gardens is commemorating five years of family-friendly experiences with Sesame Street® Safari of Fun by bringing back a limited-time offer. With Preschool Pass, kids 5 and younger can enjoy all the excitement of Busch Gardens Tampa and SeaWorld® Orlando for FREE from Jan. 5 through Dec. 31.

Join everyone’s favorite Sesame Street friends at Busch Gardens’ Sesame Street Safari of Fun for a family-friendly African adventure filled with kid-size rides and cool water fun. This is a limited-time offer and online registration is required. The Preschool Pass does not include daily parking, separate-ticketed events or other Pass Member discounts.

To learn more about Preschool Pass, and to register, visit BuschGardens.com.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full Disclosure Policy

Sea World Halloween #Spooktacular – Weekends in October

image

Last weekend my family was invited to attend the kick off to SeaWorld’s Halloween Spooktacular which made me so happy because this is something we have done every year for about 12 years now.  It is always so much fun no matter how old the kids get.  Along with all the wonderful shows like Blue Horizons, Shamu and Alure of the Ocean, there is Sesame Street’s Count Down to Halloween which was such a cute show featuring The Count, Elmo, Zoey, Telly Abby and other great characters.  Your kids will have a blast singing along and dancing to this great Halloween count down show.

sesame-street

Plus while in the park, you get to enjoy great rides like Kraken, Manta and Journey to Atlantis.  And you can visit fun areas like petting the stingrays, feeding the dolphins or sea lions, splashing around in the splash pad at Happy Harbor and so much more.

kyle-stingraysAnd if that isn’t enough, there are so many other fun Halloween themed things to do during the day like trick or treating throughout the park, visiting the party zone, decorating sugar cookies, getting creative with a Make It Take It pumpkin craft, and meeting all kinds of great Sea World characters who will make your day so much fun.

cookies

Spooktacular Highlights Include:

Waves of Trick-or-Treat Fun
Offering many kinds of sweet treats, costumed youngsters can trick-or-treat “under the sea.” Each sea-themed trick-or-treat station features an assortment of ghoulish goodies, including Tootsie Roll, jelly beans, Airheads and other candy favorites.

Penelope’s Party Zone
Located at SeaWorld’s Bayside area, this dynamic “underwater” environment comes to life each weekend with a live DJ encouraging kids to dance and sing along, a variety of interactive crafts, countless bubbles floating overhead and colorful pumpkin fish and other sea-themed characters gliding around for great photo opportunities!

Spooktacular Dance Party
End your Spooktacular day with Princess Penelope and her undersea friends as children (and adults, too) can dance along to a Spooktacular mix of line-dancing favorites at the Village Square at the front of the park.

Sweet Treat Decorating
Kids and parents alike can have a “splash” creating their own sweet treats at the cookie decorating station. Kids can decorate and devour their spooky cookie when they purchase a kit that comes equipped with a cookie, frosting and toppings. Nominal fee.

school-fish

BEST TICKET OFFER:

The best way to experience SeaWorld’s Halloween Spooktacular and all of SeaWorld’s year-round events, as well as exclusive savings and perks, is with an Annual Pass. For a limited time, parents can get 50% off an Annual Pass for kids 9 and under with the purchase of a full-paid Annual Pass. For more details and to purchase, visit SeaWorldOrlando.com.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full Disclosure Policy

Rock the Universe at Universal Studios 9/5 & 9/6

RTU14

Rock the Universe at Universal Studios Orlando is back and will be taking place September 5th and 6th from 4 pm to 1 am.  It’s an entire weekend of great music, real faith, best friends, fist-pumping rock, praise songs, autographs, shouts of joy, lifted hands and lifted hearts.

On Friday, let your hearts be lifted with an entire night of praise and worship with

  • Third Day
  • Newsboys
  • Jeremy Camp

Then on Saturday, get fired up for a night of Christian rock and hip-hop with

  • Switchfoot
  • Lecrae
  • TobyMac

In-between the concerts, scream and spin and laugh on action-packed rides in Universal Studios® including:

  • TRANSFORMERS: The Ride-3D
  • Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit®
  • Revenge of the Mummy®
  • MEN IN BLACK™ Alien Attack™
  • Despicable Me Minion Mayhem

For Individual Tickets Click Here
For Group Tickets Click Here
For Annual Pass Holder Tickets Click Here

Rock the Universe is a separately ticketed special event. Event held rain or shine. No rain checks, refunds or returns. Dates, times, entertainment, attractions and prices subject to change without notice. Parking fees are not included. Additional restrictions may apply.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full Disclosure Policy

Review of Vivo Italian Kitchen at Universal City Walk in Orlando

universal city walk

universal city walk

By now, most of you have read my review of Harry Potter’s Diagon Alley at Universal Studios and my review of Cabana Bay Beach Resort but I still haven’t told you about one more part of my fun blogger trip…. Universal City Walk !!!

On our first night of our trip, we all got to head over to Universal City Walk which is located within walking distance of both Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure theme parks.  It is a huge area filled with tons of restaurants, the AMC Universal Cineplex 20 with IMAX movie theater, Hollywood Drive-In Golf, bars and night clubs, gift shops and more.

vivo-italian-kitchen

For dinner, we ate at Vivo Italian Kitchen which features delightful modern Italian cuisine created from tried and true family recipes.  It has an open kitchen so you will immediately smell freshly baked breads and see chefs mixing sauces, hand-crafting dough, preparing homemade mozzarella, making fresh pasta and sliding piping hot pizzas out of the oven.

vivo-mozzarella

To start our meal, they brought out a plate of hand pulled mozzarella with virgin olive oil, balsamic glaze, olive tapenade and pesto oil.  Everyone at the table LOVED this.  I think near the end we were all fighting over who got the last one.

vivo-jars

Next they brought out tuscan toast and a platter of vasi-mini mason jars (normally you would order them each separately).  The ones they brought us were the Roasted Eggplant, Tomato Mozzarella, and Ricotta w/ Candied Walnuts.  I could have eaten both the Tomato Mozzarella or the Ricotta w/ Candied Walnuts as a whole meal.  WOW they are SUPER DELICIOUS !

Vivo-meals

For our entree, I chose the Parmigiano (chicken parmesan), Kyle chose the Pork Loin with garlic mashed potatoes and Kaley chose the lasagna.  These were all SO good and I would highly recommend any of them.

vivo-desserts

Dessert is always my favorite part of any meal and I was definitely not disappointed with the selection of desserts they brought out for us to try.  I think I dove into them so fast I forgot to listen to what they were (one was some kind of cheesecake and the other was like a lava cake) but trust me, they were amazing !

Whether you are a local or from out of the area, Universal City Walk is a great place to go for an entire evening of fun !

Disclosure: My trip was paid for however all opinions are 100% mine and not influenced in any way.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full Disclosure Policy

Universal Orlando’s Cabana Bay BeachResort

Universal Orlando's New Cabana Bay Beach Resort

A couple weeks ago, I told you about my fabulous blogger trip where I got to experience the newest Harry Potter area at Universal Studios, #DiagonAlley (see my review HERE).  What made this trip even more fun was that we got to stay at the Cabana Bay Beach Resort, Universal Orlando’s newest value-priced hotel, which is retro-themed to the 50′s and 60′s.   It is conveniently located within walking distance of both Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure and is the perfect place to stay while vacationing in Orlando.  A big plus to staying here is that hotel guests can enjoy Early Park Admission to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter one hour before the theme park opens.  Also you can get complimentary shuttle buses to both Universal Orlando theme parks and Universal CityWalk.

cabana-bay-ping-pong-kids

On our first day, we decided to arrive early so that we could hang out at their bigger pool for awhile.  It is 10,000 sq ft and features waterfalls and cannons for interactive fun, an iconic dive tower waterslide, kids splash pad area, hot tub, full bar and beach play area loaded with fun activities like corn hole, pool, ping pong, hula hoops, ladderball and more.  If you want to have a your own private area that is out of the sun, you can rent one of their cabanas which includes a TV and fan so you can chill out and relax while the kids swim. In the evening, you can make S’mores by the fire pit or watch movies on a large screen by the pool. While we were there, they played Madagascar :)

image

Around 4:00 pm, we decided to go see if our room was ready and we were greeted by so many friendly employees.  Once we got to our room, the kids were in awe with how pretty it was.  The family suites sleep up to six and have a cool retro feel. They also feature a kitchenette with microwave, mini-refrigerator and sink. Kaley and I each claimed a bed in the one bedroom while Kyle pulled out the couch to form his bed which was super comfortable.  I don’t think I have ever seen a pull-out bed with such a soft mattress before.

sonic-fill-cups

While staying at the hotel, you can dine-in or take-out at the food court which features a variety of food including burgers and milkshakes, pizza and pasta, a bakery, sandwiches and more.  Plus you may want to pick up their Sonic Fill unlimited drink souvenir cup.  For only $8.99 for one day, $11.99 for 2 days, $14.99 for 3 days or $17.99 for your entire stay, you can fill your cup up over and over again.

galaxy-bowl

On the second evening, after we spent the day at Universal, we came back to the resort and had a private bowling party at the 10 lane Galaxy Bowl.  The Minions even showed up to celebrate with us and dance with the kids.  It was a ton of fun !  This is such a great place for families to go together and you can even order food and drinks while you bowl.

jack-lalanne

If you are wanting even more fun with the kids, head over to the arcade which is located right next to the bowling alley and play some retro video games.  Or if you don’t want to miss your daily workout, you can hit the Jack LaLanne Ftness Center and get a great workout.

cabana-bay-lazy-river-kyle

On the last day of our trip, we decided to hang out at the second pool which is 8000 sq ft and has a lazy river, beautiful shaded pool bar and lots of lounge chairs and tables with umbrellas to sit at around the pool.  This was a much more relaxing pool for those that want a little more of a quiet day.  We actually stayed until about 3:30 pm and the kids were so sad to be heading back home.  I think I will plan a surprise weekend in a month or so to treat them to another fun weekend getaway.

Rates for the family suites begin at $174 per-night, and can run as low as $134 per-night depending on the length of stay. Rates for the standard guest rooms begin at $119 per night, and can run as $93 per-night depending on the length of stay.

Check out the video below about the hotel

To learn more or to make a reservation, call 1-888-273-1311 or visit UniversalOrlando.com.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full Disclosure Policy