Saturday, April 30, 2011

The Royal Family's First Round Draft

As most ESPN analysts expected, Kate Middleton was selected as the overall number one pick in this year's NFL Wedding Draft when Prince William of the British royal family selected her in the first round on Friday morning.

This came as no surprise to NFL insiders, as there was an obvious need to add a young, middle-class female into the mix of mostly male and somewhat effeminate male royalty. Middleton now fills in the gap that was created when Princess Diana was cut from the royal team in 1996.

Middleton, who was at Radio City Music Hall for the Selection Ceremony, gave Roger Goodell a big hug and then gave a poised speech about how she "always wanted to be a princess, and would have played for whatever royal team had picked her, but was ecstatic to be a part of such a great program as that of the Brits."

Middleton takes over at the Princess position, which was previously held by Diana Spencer. She also takes over as Duchess of Cambridge and outside linebacker. She was admitted to the royal facilities late Saturday, but contract disputes between the NFL owners and the player's association over a new collective bargaining agreement could result in her being locked out of the palace until a new CBA is inked.

The cloud of a labor lockout doesn't seem to have affected Middleton, who was quoted as saying that she would find something to do in case the NFL and the players can't agree on terms, such as trying on crowns and new dresses. Middleton has also been reviewing tape of previous royal games as well as practicing spit-shining Prince William's royal scepter.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Dry Cleaning Self Storage

The dry cleaners called us this week to remind us to pick up a suit that they've been holding for us since August. At first I was embarrassed, until I realized that the total cost for them to dry clean and then hold my suit for eight months was only $9.

This got me thinking: if I ever needed to store all of my clothes somewhere for an extended period of time, I would just opt to bring all of my clothes to the dry cleaners instead of putting everything in self storage.

A simple cost-benefit analysis puts things into perspective. If I rented climate controlled self-storage from any place in Baton Rouge, I could get the first month for $1 at practically any place I chose (plus $30 in "Move In" costs), and then pay anywhere from $25 to $100 a month for storage depending on the size of the storage space. Let's say that I would need the $100 rate, due to inflation.

$131 doesn't sound too bad if I wanted to store all of my clothes somewhere for a month. But as each month goes by, the bills would continue to add up. Whereas, if I had invested that money in putting my clothes in the dry cleaners, it would be a one-time fee of probably several hundred dollars to store all of our clothes (assuming we had a good "Dry clean 5 get 1 free deal" or something).

Several hundred bucks seems like lot a lot of money, but I could keep our clothes in there for as long as I wanted for the same price without ever having to pay anything else. Plus, when I finally got my clothes from the dry cleaners, they would be clean and pressed, and ready to be worn.

So what if I wouldn't have any clothes to wear while my clothes are in storage? I enjoy being naked. Other people don't particularly like it, but that's their problem. It gets hot down here in Louisiana... I need all the drafts that I can get.

And sure, the girl at the check-out counter would look at me like I'm an idiot when I go to pick up my clothes, but she does that anyway. And assuming that I have a reward card with the dry cleaners, I would have just racked up enough reward points to then store all of Betty's clothes FOR FREE.

Who's laughing now? Me, the naked guy with all of his clothes stored away at the dry cleaners. Booyah!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Cake Balls

Betty mentioned in passing that she wanted to make some cake balls.

My wife is a master cake decorator, and so I assumed that she needed cake balls to indicate that one of her cakes was a male cake. I also assumed this was for a bachelorette party.

I wanted to surprise her by helping her make some cake balls. Then I thought - why stop at cake balls? Why not make a cake dong as well? I mean, what good are the berries if there's no twig?

Of course, that got me thinking... if there was a male cake (with cake balls just hanging out) then that probably also meant that there is a female cake somewhere. And we also must assume at this point that the female cake's junk is also exposed for the world to see.

Slutty cakes. The best kind!

I experimented with several ways of making balls, dongs and hoo-hoos for cakes, but I got my best results using fondant.

Warning, the image linked below is not for children, should not be viewed at work, and is not for people who are easily offended at culinary masterpieces shaped like genitals. Also, do not look at this picture if you are a sex addict or just really like sweets.

Click here to see my finished product.

Needless to say, Betty was disgusted. She then explained that the cake balls she was talking about were actual balls of cake. As in, cake scooped into ball shapes and mixed with cream cheese or something, and not, as I supposed, genitalia made out of fondant.

I was sad that I had failed to make Betty happy with my cake wank. However, when I attached the dong and balls to a cupcake, it suddenly became the most popular cupcake in the room.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

My Celebrity Sex Tape

I decided to jump on the bandwagon and make a celebrity sex tape.

Sorry, everyone.

Making a celebrity sex tape was much harder than I thought. I'm not a celebrity, so that's a strike against my sex tape becoming famous. Then again, once my sex tape goes public, I'll be a celebrity, at which point it will be a celebrity sex tape.

So here's how to download your very own copy of the Tanory Tantrum Sex Tape:

1. Right-click on the following picture, choose "Save image as", and save it to your desktop. You can also just copy it to your clipboard, but then you wouldn't have a picture of me on your computer.

[Pic: Source pic for sex tape]

2. If you saved this picture on your computer, open it and print it. Print as small of a size as possible. (If you chose to just copy my picture instead of saving it then you're on your own.)

Note: If you can't print it to be smaller than a wallet size picture, you can download the following smaller image of the same picture shown above:

[Pic: Mini-source pic for sex tape]

3. Get out your tape dispenser.

4. Get two pieces of tape.

5. Tape my picture to the other piece of tape.

You now have a Tanory Tantrum Sex Tape!

What's that? You don't see what's sexual about it? Well, if you notice, I've got one leg up in this picture. You can now hold the tape up and thrust it back and forth in one of your family member's faces.


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Technology Refresh

I'm about to start a "technology refresh" in my house. It's time. Actually, it's overdue.

Betty and I love to watch movies at night, but we also like clean dishes (well, Betty likes them - I think we should just use paper plates and/or our hands), and so we wash dishes at night while we watch movies. The problem is that our dish washer is so old and loud that we have to crank up the volume on the TV to hear the movie. That risks waking up the kids, who would then hear all the bad words and/or groaning that so often is a part of the movies we watch.

Plus our dishwasher is leaking water, but really, it's mostly annoying because it's loud. The leaking issue isn't really an issue when you think about it... it's almost like it's mopping our floor for us.

My wireless router is also a piece of crap. It used to work well, but has just about given up on sending out wireless signals. I can stand ten feet away from our router and just get 2 out of 5 bars of wireless. It's pathetic. I'm a software developer, for crying out loud, I need five out of five bars throughout my house for no other reason than I just want them!

Once we have better wireless then we're going to get a wireless printer. It'll sit in the same place as our current printer, but without the wires running from one side of the room to the other. Plus our current printer keeps telling me there's a paper jam after it prints a single page, even when there's no paper jam. It's like that scene from Office Space....

I also want a Roomba - those robotic vacuums - because on NBC's Parks and Recreation they strap an mp3 player on one and call it DJ Roomba, and now Betty and I call everything "DJ something." (I'm DJ Double-Da.)

We're also going to get a TV for the patio even though Betty keeps saying we're not. Hopefully she hasn't read this far down the blog post.

If you have some new technology that has dramatically changed your life, please leave me a comment so that I can budget for it as part of our technology refresh. Or, if you're interesting in a piece of crap wireless router with a signal that dies after 10 feet, let me know and I'll contact you when it's available.

Monday, April 18, 2011

The Ultimate Pizza

At some point in my life I will open a pizzeria. I already have a grand idea for the Gradient Pizza (TM) where the crust starts out thin on one side but slowly gets thicker as you move across the pizza.

But while my family and I were eating at the California Pizza Kitchen in Perkin's Rowe today, I had an epiphany:

I didn't want pepperoni to top my pizza. I didn't want extra cheese or sausage or BBQ chicken. I didn't want vegetables, pineapples or bacon.

I wanted more pizza.

Thus, the idea for the Ultimate Pizza was born. The Ultimate Pizza is a pizza topped with another pizza.

In my restaurant, if you want a pepperoni pizza as the topping of your pizza, then you'd order a pepperoni pizza pizza. We'd bake a pepperoni pizza, chop it up into bits, then bake it into another pizza.

You can even have more than one pizza baked into your pizza. The Gradient Pizza would go well topped on top of another Gradient Pizza.

It's brilliant. And tasty. And Ultimate.

And don't think I'm down and out by using the name Ultimate Pizza. If I think of another great pizza idea that is ultimate in nature, I'll name it the Penultimate Pizza.

You hear me, California Pizza Kitchen? I'm talking to you! I'm coming after you with my Ultimate and Gradient Pizzas, and there's nothing that you can do to stop me! Bwahaha!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Disney Trip, Days 6 and 7

Here's an interesting fact: Animal Kingdom is actually the largest of the Disney parks, but it doesn't feel like it because most of that space is used for the animals instead of people. It's also the largest animal-themed park in the world.

We know this because Day 6 in Disney was our Animal Kingdom day, and our bus driver told us this info as part of a Disney Trivia game.

But our time in Animal Kingdom almost didn't happen due to a terrible thunderstorm in the area. The weather was so bad that we even contacted our travel agent to see about postponing or cancelling our character breakfast before deciding to stop being big wusses and just brave the weather.

Lucky for us, it was pretty simple to get to the Tusker House in Animal Kingdom where we would meet Mickey, Donald, Daisy and Goofy for breakfast. We made it to the restaurant right before the sky fell.

[Pic: Us with Goofy at the Tusker House]

Anne celebrated her birthday by dancing around the restaurant with the characters, while I gorged myself on the buffet. For some reason I kept only finding the small, child-sized plates at all the buffets, while the rest of my family always had normal-sized plates. It not only made for a good laugh, but it was also good for portion control. It also challenged me to see how high I could stack my food on such a small plate. (Answer: four layers high!)

We were only able to do the Lion King show before having to leave the park due to the weather. All of the outside rides were closed due to rain and lightning, and Anne wasn't interested in the inside rides. It was our shortest and wettest day at the park, and we were stuck in the hotel room for the rest of the day. The TV in the hotel was awful - there wasn't even a pay-per-view channel - so we had nothing to do except to talk to each other.

The horror!

But we made it all up the next day, when we hit THREE PARKS IN ONE DAY!!!

Day 7, we were back at Animal Kingdom bright and early. We skipped all the living animals and went straight to the dinosaur area. I showed Anne that she didn't need to be scared of the dinosaurs by fighting this dino-topiary:

[Pic: Bobbosaurus]

My battle as Bobbosaurus even gave Anne the confidence to go right up to a full-sized dinosaur and climb all over it. I like to think that this dino was real, but was just paralyzed with fear after seeing my sweet moves take out that previous dino-topiary.

[Pic: Anne domesticates a dino]

Hardly anyone was at Animal Kingdom at this time, so Anne rode the Triceratops ride six times. (Betty and I each rode it three times. It was our most-ridden ride!) The Triceratops ride is just like Dumbo, except more Cretaceous. (You thought I was going to say Jurassic, admit it!)

[Pic: The Triceratops Spin]

Next we went back to Epcot. We mainly spent time at the World Showcase and basically ate our way through it. We had already eaten steaks at Le Cellier in Canada, had tacos and margaritas in Mexico, and shared a couple of funnel cakes in America. (Where else?!) But Betty looooves the elephant ears in France, so we had to drop by and get some for her before moving onto Morocco.

While waiting in line to see Jasmine and Aladdin in Morocco, I had the bright idea to go get some baklava and sangria from a Moroccan bazaar. I paid in cash, which was the only time that I ever paid for anything outright thanks to our meal plan. This was my $7 glass of sangria, which didn't look like much but really hit the spot:

[Pic: My small yet powerful sangria]

The kids napped while Betty and I ate in China. Anne woke up just in time to see Mulan.

[Pic: Anne and Mulan]

We closed out the day, as well as our trip, in Magic Kingdom. We rode a few rides then went to our final character dinner at Crystal Palace, to see Pooh, Tigger, Eeyore and Piglet. Anne's face was worth the cost of the trip:

[Pic: Worth it!]

The wonderful thing about Tiggers is Tiggers are wonderful things... they forgive you 27 years after you punched them in the balls when you were 4 after they sneak up behind you and tap you on the shoulder in an effort to see your excited, surprised smile. (I'm still sorry about the nads, Tigger!)

[Pic: Tigger forgave me for smacking him in the balls 27 years ago]

Peter loved Pooh. I do, too! The night before I downloaded a bookshelf app for my iPhone, and "The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh" came free with it. I read the whole thing in preparation for our dinner with the crew of the Hundred Acre Woods.

[Pic: Worth it!]

Seeing Peter with Piglet was one of the highlights of the trip. Who knew that Piglet would be such a hit?

[Pic: Peter didn't want to let Piglet go]

We finished our vacation by watching a parade at the Magic Kingdom. Watching my kids watch the parade brought back all of the great memories of our trip - breakfast in Cinderella's Castle, Anne's expression when she first walked into Disney, Peter clapping and cooing on It's a Small World. All of the annoyances, like the incessant rain, slowly melted away. In my mind, I was already planning the next trip back to Disney.

Goodbye, Disney, and thanks for the memories! See you real soon!

Friday, April 08, 2011

Disney Trip, Day 5

Day 5 in Disney was our Hollywood Studios Day.

When we first entered Hollywood Studios we saw Tigger and Pooh, but they were leaving just as we walked up. A Disney "cast member" there told us that Tigger and Pooh would be coming out as part of a parade, so we - like good Mardi Gras'ers - lined up along the parade route and starting flashing people as they walked by.

(Actually, I was the only one flashing. I also started selling Bloody Mary's out of my backpack. Mardi Gras has trained me well!)

We made a tactical mistake while waiting for the parade to start by sending my dad to go get Fast Passes for the Toy Story ride. He tried to go above and beyond the call of duty by not only getting Fast Passes for Toy Story, but also to the Rockin' Rollercoaster and Tower of Terror. But since you can only get one Fast Pass per person per hour, all of the Fast Passes he got - except for the first two - were unusable. All of his hard work was for nothing!

And while he was wondering around the park in search of more Fast Pass kiosks, we were stuck watching this:

The Disney Channel Dancers.

[Pic: Make the madness stop!]

As you can tell, those dancers are not Tigger and Pooh - which is who we were waiting for. Anne thought it was too loud, I was bored, and Betty was disappointed that we didn't see Pooh Bear. So we escaped the parade and headed to the Playhouse Disney / Disney Junior show. My dad met us just in time for the show to start. (He had collected a record eight set of Fast Passes by this point.)

After Playhouse Disney, we had lunch with Special Agent Oso, Leo and June from Little Einsteins, and Handy Manny. It was a great experience... Anne loved all of the characters. She even gave Handy Manny a big smooch on his cheek!

[Pic: Oso special!]

When we left the character meal, we were tickled to find the Disney Channel Dancers back out on the parade route. Apparently they have a parade every hour on the hour. We ended up seeing them dancing several more times during the day, and each time we saw them we reminded each other to not let my dad out of our sights. It became the running joke of the day.

After lunch we had a snack, courtesy of our meal plan. Betty got a huge cupcake, Anne got a bunny cookie, and I got a carrot cake cookie - which was two thin slices of carrot cake with cream cheese icing in the middle. Betty's looked the best, but mine tested the best!

[Pic: Snack attack!]

Our snack gave us the energy needed to play in the "Honey, I Shrunk the Kids" area. Anne had a great time playing in a giant spider web / slide. She also rode on a giant ant!

[Pic: Yeeehaw!]

The weather forecast said that it was supposed to thunderstorm around three, so at two we decided to leave the park. On the way out, I took this picture of a trash can:

[Pic: Waste, please!]

Despite all of the efforts to recycle, reuse and conserve resources, these trash cans were practically begging us to waste! I complied by throwing away all of our extra, unusable Fast Pass tickets.

After a long day at Hollywood Studios, we ended up giving our only valid Fast Pass tickets (to the famed Toy Story ride) away to a family of four who was going to try to brave the weather. We hoped they enjoyed the ride. My dad worked hard for those tickets!

Next up, Animal Kingdom!

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Disney Trip, Day 4

Day 4 in Disney: We rolled into the Magic Kingdom like rock stars.

[Pic: Ready for my Princess Breakfast!]

We were royal guests at Cinderella's Castle and had plans to meet all the princesses for breakfast. But as we made our way to the castle, we stopped every ten feet so the ladies could love on Peter. What can I say, he's a lady killer!

[Pic: Peter meets a nice lady]

The White Rabbit, or "WR" as we came to know him, was late for a very important date, but not late enough that he couldn't stop and chat with Petey for a bit. Of course, that might have had something to do with all the ladies flocking to Peter. You know what they say about rabbits!

[Pic: Peter chats it up with WR]

Anyway, onto the castle. Anne was so excited to meet all of her favorite Disney characters, like Cinderella:

[Pic: Annie with Cindy]

She also met Snow White, Ariel, Belle and Sleeping Beauty. (Click for pictures.)

Then, like any princess would do, she ingested her birthday cupcake by osmosis, by basically smearing the icing all over her face. This would have been a great time to take a picture with one of the princesses!

[Pic: The Remains of the Birthday Cupcake]

As a parting gift, all the girls who ate with the princesses got magic wands and all the boys got swords. So now not only were my kids the most beautiful princess and most handsome prince in all the land, but they were now considered armed and dangerous.

Once we left the castle, we walked into Tomorrowland and met Push the Talking Trash Can. He was hysterical!

Of course, Anne was then afraid of all of the other trash cans for the rest of the trip. Oh well! I guess we didn't want her playing with the trash anyway.

After eating a light snack and throwing its wrapper into Push the Talking Trash Can, we went off to go dance with Chip and Dale. Anne had so much fun dancing! She basically dances by jumping up and down, which is more than I can say for myself. (If I try to dance, I injure myself if more than 3 parts of my body move at the same time.)

[Pic: Dancing with the Chipmunks!]

The last character we saw for the day was Peter Pan. Anne is so smart - she told him that she has a brother named Peter. He thought that was very clever!

[Pic: Peter and Peter!]

By the end of the day we were pretty exhausted, but when we saw the Sword in the Stone by the carousel we knew that we had to try to yank it out. We watched several strong, strapping young lads try and fail. When it was Anne's turn, she pulled out the sword that the princesses had given to Peter at Cinderella's Castle, then pretended to pull it out of the stone. You should have seen the boys' faces!

[Pic: Excalibur!]

The last thing we did in the park that day was to watch a parade by the castle. This was the first time that I've ever put Anne up on my shoulders to watch a parade, and it might be the last time: she peed on my shoulders. But I didn't really mind... I just blamed the pee smell on the kid standing next to us.

[Pic: Is it raining?]

We ended the day as it begun: in a castle. Except this time the castle was the Port Orleans playground, which has a slide shaped like a big castle.

[Pic: Queen of the castle!]

She pretended to be the queen of the castle, and I pretended to be a dragon. She eventually defeated me, domesticated me, then used me as a weapon against rival empires.

Disney Day 5 up next!

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Disney Trip, Day 3

We spent Monday morning at Epcot, and the first thing we did was to go see Mickey and his friends. There was practically no line at all! Annie loved it, Peter liked it, and Betty and I were glad that the kids got to see the characters. Okay, you got me... I was pretty excited to see the characters, too!

Here's a picture with us and Mickey...

[Picture: Mickey!]

And here are some links to other pictures with us and some characters, if you want to see them: Pluto, Minnie, Donald and Goofy.

When we exited Mickey's area, we just happened to come across Tinkerbell. Anne loves Tinkerbell, so we thought she'd be super excited, but instead she was scared... because Tink's friend Terence was there. Apparently Anne is not scared when her Daddy wears tights and a feathered cap and prances around the room, but is completely freaked out when another guy does the same thing.

[Picture: Tinkerbell and Terrence]

We also saw Marie from the Aristocats. Anne didn't know who she was, but she knew she was a huge, friendly cat, and therefore this was one of Anne's favorite characters of the entire trip. She was more excited about Marie than she was for Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Pluto or Goofy. Go figure!

[Picture: Marie!]

Anne and I had to leave Marie and go save Mommy and Peter from the jaws of a great white. Actually, I took a picture of them from behind first, then slowly made my way to the front. After you've been married for six years, you'll take what you can get.

[Picture: Eaten!]

We rode the Figment and Nemo rides, then tried to sit through Turtle Talk with Crush. Figment was my favorite ride when I was a kid. But Anne covered her ears and screamed the whole time we were on it, and she didn't think much of the Nemo ride either. We then tried to go see Turtle Talk with Crush, where Crush from Finding Nemo interacts with the crowd. Betty and I thought it was cool, but Anne cried, so we left. It was just as well, because right about then it started pouring.

It actually rained a lot while we were at Disney. We ended up leaving Epcot around 2 in order to beat the thunderstorms. We went home, took a nap, then woke up in need of something to do. Anne had a great idea, which was to plaster my mom's face with stickers, so we all joined in.

[Picture: Stickered!]

Once we ran out of stickers, we decided to go to the arcade at our resort, the Port Orleans French Quarter. We had some free games, although Anne just enjoyed running around the place and playing with all of the controls. She was a lot of fun to watch! It was more exhausting watching her run around the arcade than it was to actually walk around Epcot!

[Picture: At the arcade]

After we conquered several arcade games, it was off to bathe and bed, because the next day we had a date with several princesses!

Monday, April 04, 2011

Disney Trip, Day 2

There's nothing quite like walking into the Magic Kingdom in Disney World and seeing Cinderella's castle off in the distance... especially if you're a 2-year-and-51 week-old girl.

[Pic: Anne's first glimpse at the castle]

Seeing the look on Anne's face when she first saw the castle was worth the trip alone. Walking into the Magic Kingdom is also my favorite part of Disney. I feel like a kid again when I step into Disney World!

We had park hoppers, so we spent Sunday morning at Magic Kingdom and the afternoon at Epcot. Going into this trip we didn't know what to expect from Annie, and we thought she would love the rides and be afraid of the characters. But we had it backwards: she LOVED the characters, and hated any ride that involved loud noises or darkness - which was most of them. For example, she hated the Winnie the Pooh and Peter Pan rides, and loved Dumbo and Aladdin's Flying Carpets. She also loved It's a Small World, which we rode three times.

We got "Surprise Fast Passes" for Mickey's Philharmagic when we got our Fast Passes for the Winnie the Pooh ride. And although Betty and I love the Philharmagic, it was too loud for Anne. She covered her ears and screamed, so we had to take her out.

[Pic: Going into the Philharmagic]

So my mom bought her some princess earphones which we were hoping to use as ear muffs. (Anne wore then for five minutes then took them off.)

[Pic: Anne's headphones]

The first character that we met in Disney was Pinocchio, whom my daughter calls "Nochi Nochi". We've never watched Pinocchio with her, but she knows who he is from some of our books. I thanked Nochi Nochi for the picture, then gave him a pat on the back while I instructed him to tell lots of lies around women so that he'd be popular with them, if you know what I mean.

[Pic: Our first character - Nochi Nochi!]

We got the Disney meal plan, which I recommend to anyone going to Disney. And after scaring our child silly by forcing her onto several dark and scary rides, we went to eat at Pinnochio's Village Haus, which is right by Small World. The meal plan is great, because with each meal you get an entree, a side item, a drink and a dessert. It was too much food for a single person to eat, so Betty and I shared our meal, then gave the dessert to Anne since that's all she would eat anyway.

[Pic: Yum yum!]

Then we went home and napped. When we woke up, it was time for Epcot.

The International Flower and Garden Show was going on in Epcot, so we got to see a lot of our favorite characters in topiary form. We saw Mickey, Minnie and Pluto (shown below), Pooh, Tigger and Rabbit...

[Pic: Disney Topiaries]

Peter Pan fighting Hook, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, and even Lightning McQueen from Cars!

[Pic: Lightning McQueen!]

We also got to meet Duffy, who is a Teddy Bear that Mickey brings with him when he goes on trips. We didn't know who Duffy was, but Annie sure seemed to love him!

[Pic: Duffy!]

But Anne's favorite things to do in Epcot were to pick up sticks, pick up leaves and pretend to paint with them, and most of all, chase birds and squirrels. She chased a duck in the World Showcase from France to Germany!

[Pic: Duck!]

Everyone around her smiled and laughed as she smiled and laughed, and of course scared the duck half silly. We saw lots of ducks that looked just like this one - they might have even been the same duck! - and every time it looked at Anne and just took off waddling!

As for Peter, he and I were tired out from our long day at the two parks. Peter didn't sleep well in his Pack N Play for the first two nights, so he slept on top of me Saturday night and alongside me Sunday night. We generally never let him in the bed with us, but we made an exception from 4 am - 6 am Sunday morning.

[Pic: Sleeping beauties]

More Epcot pics to come on Day 3!

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Disney Trip, Day 1

I'm on a need-to-know basis in my house. I just go where I'm told to go, when I'm told to go there, then do whatever my wife Betty tells me that I should do once I get there. This is my key to a happy marriage.

So it was a pleasant surprise when, one day after work, I found that four suitcases had been packed, trips for a vacation had been planned, my parents had been invited, and oh, by the way, our flight was leaving the next day. And where were we going?

Disney World!!!

I actually had more than a day's notice about our trip, but only because my wife asked if I'd be up for driving all the way to Orlando in a single day with two kids. I said no, and suggested that we fly. We talked about it for a few weeks. Originally, flights were pretty pricey, but we were able to get some great rates from Southwest - and right before oil prices went up. So we flew.

This was both of our kids' first time flying. We were worried about their ears, so Betty gave Anne some Benadryl to try to knock her out. Unfortunately, it just made her cranky. Fortunately for us, my parents were with us, so we had her sit by them.

[Picture: Drugs and flying don't mix, kids!]


We also sat across the aisle from them, so she couldn't kick our seats. It was all part of the plan!

My son Peter loved flying, since it mostly involved looking out the window and then napping on my dad.

[Picture: Air Nap!]

We were going to Disney for two reasons: first just for a much-needed vacation, but also because my daughter's birthday is on 4/4, and she's able to get in for free while she's under two years of age.

We stayed at Port Orleans, which is a Disney resort, so we got to use the buses. There are two parts of Port Orleans... there's the French Quarter, where we stayed, and then there's the Riverside resort. We stayed at the French Quarter because there's only a single bus stop instead of the several at Riverside, plus I thought I would get to see some ladies flashing for beads at night. Alas, the French Quarter resort only looked like the real French Quarter, but didn't really feel like the French Quarter - there were no drunk women flashing, no debauchery, it was completely clean of trash and didn't smell like horse manure, there were no bums asking for money, and I didn't feel like I needed to walk down the street with my wallet in my front pocket. But we still liked it anyway.

Port Orleans is built near the Sassagoula River, which connects Port Orleans, the Grand Floridian, Downtown Disney, and lots of other places. We determined that Sassagoula is a combination of Mississippi, Pascagoula and something that starts with an S. But we liked the Sassagoula River because, in my family, we've always called a girl's hoohoo a "goula." We think it's the Italian slang for it, but are not really sure. Either way, I had to get a picture of my mom by the sign, and we made her stand in front of the "Sassa" part of Sassagoula so we could just get a picture with her and a giant Goula.

[Picture: Sassy Goula!]

Then we called it the Sassy Goula River for the rest of the trip.

We took a ferry from Port Orleans to Downtown Disney. This ferry boat was actually a momentous occasion, because it marked yet another mode of transportation for us Tanorys. That day we had also been in a van, a plane, a bus, a tram at the airport, elevators, escalators, people-movers (moving sidewalks)... and now a boat! All of this moving around made up for the several weeks prior, in which I sat on a chair for 64 hours straight and just propelled myself with my legs in order to go anywhere.

Anne likes to watch Curious George on PBS / LPB, and they always have a commercial for Rainforest Cafe right before George comes on. So we thought it would be fun to take Anne to the Rainforest Cafe in Downtown Disney. She had been before when she was a baby and she loved it then, but this time, she started a new motif for our trip: her hands over her ears whenever anything was remotely loud.

[Picture: Hey monkeys, can you keep it down?!]

So... she hated Rainforest Cafe, but the rest of us liked it. We made it up to her by taking her shopping and taking pictures with statues of Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty.

[Picture: Cinderelli!]

Then just to make sure that my little munchkin was happy, we took her to the Girardelli place and got a sundae.

[Picture: Ice cream makes everything better.]

After that we took another ferry boat ride on the Sassy Goula River back to Port Orleans and went to bed. We had a big day ahead of us!


I'd like to say that this was the easiest vacation we'd ever planned, mostly because we didn't plan it. One of our friends gave us the name of a travel agent, Nancy Swope, and she was incredible. We originally emailed her at 10:35 PM, and heard back from her at 10:45 PM the same night - and our travel agent lives on the east coast, so it was really 11:45 PM there! She was so responsive, it was incredible.

So I'd like to give a shout out to Nancy, our Personal Vacation Planner, who is affiliated with MEI-Travel and Mouse Fan Travel. The crazy thing is that it was free for us to use her services. She booked our hotel, got us our reservations for the character meals, got us rooms on the first floor of our hotel right by the bus stop... she did it all! If you contact MEI-Travel, please ask for Nancy Swope!

Friday, April 01, 2011

The End

Well gang, everything must come to an end, and so it is with this blog. I have enjoyed every minute writing it, and I hope you've enjoyed reading it. Thank you so much for all of the encouragement and support these last few years. I will keep the blog site up so my old writing can find new readers, but there won't be anything new.

Thanks again for reading!