Were back from our cruise, but then I came down with a fever of 103, and a cough. Since I work in a hospital, prior to returning they made me get tested and turns out I only have a stinker flu – my temp is down to 100 at this point so on my way back to health.
So lets move on to fun things, such as Sushi Classes on our Sea Day. We wer on the Royal Caribbean Vision of the Seas and had a sea day, decided to try a Sushi making class, and honestly I learned a lot.
With out a doubt as soon as I can get over to our local super Asian grocery store, I will buy some ingredients and make a huge pot of rice try this class with the kids as home.
We recently had dinner with friends and co workers at Lawry’s Steak House in Chicago Illinois, see previous post for more of this dinner site. We go every year to Chicago for RSNA, the Radiological Society of North America. This is our Dinner spot. Sharing a few pictures of the beautiful site! It is filled with history and we love it.
Dinner live carols! Check us all out video taping, everyone!
After our delicious crab early lunch, we headed over to check out some totem pole carving at the Alaskan Rainforest Sanctuary.
We walk over to the totem carving shed to see this beauty in progress.
The Totem artist explaining what step he is on now.
He says the whole process will take him about 4 months and he is 3 months into it right now, and this is his first independent project, but has been an apprentice for many years now.
David and I are both amazed and while we have no real artistic capabilities, we feel inspired. This totem is planned for the raptor center, which is next door and where we are headed next, the bird sanctuary.
Second on our list while in Seattle, Wa for one day on our way to Alaska is the Space Needle. We honestly do not know much about the space needle, except it is tall and cool and we want to check it out. I did just learn today that the space needle was built in 1961 for the world’s fair. The glass floor is new from a recent renovation – which is good, because it turns out the glass floor is our favorite part.
Video (from the top) of the elevator we just rode up to the top of the space needle.
David having fun with the glass bottom from the top of the space needle.
You can buy at drink of wine or beer or a soda/water at the top or a light snack meal. We did not, but instead just reviewed the views from the top.
Wait a minute: “This will be to Seattle what the Eiffel tower is to Paris” – then we have back to back seen Both the Seattle and Paris towers… this is us in June. (wait it was late July, time sure does work weird when your on vacation).
This is what I have been waiting for the Entire Trip, the one thing I REALLY wanted to do in Tokyo – Go to Tokyo Disney. I actually want to go to every Disney Park in the world, so all that is left is the waterparks in Florida and Shanghai and China Disney parks. I researched that today is a great day to go as the Tokyo Disney crowd calendar says it is moderate, which is the lowest crowds at the park the entire time we will be there – Never go during high, because it turns out it was still pretty darn busy there.
TIP: Use a Disney Crowd Calendar – just do a quick web search on this and it is easy to figure from there.
We take a train about 45mins from our Airbnb to the entrance to Disney Tokyo, and wanted to visit both Disney Sea and the Disneyland Parks, there are two Parks. But you cannot swap between – no Park Hopper options. No using the tickets we have from the Florida park you have to buy new ones. A one day price one park (we decided on The Seas based upon previous online research) is 7400 yen or $74.00, in comparison todays price for Disney World is $109.00 for one park one day.
The best price deals though were inside. Food and snacks in comparison to Disney World are extremely well priced you can buy an ice cream large for $3.00, this frozen treat is made of a frozen jello on the bottom, shaved ice in the middle and rice crisps sprinkled on top with a creamier than you get in the US style frozen custard on top – it was 550yen or $5.50, Bargain in Disney!
You can buy a quality tasty chicken curry bun sandwich for $5.00, and it is cute! More on food in a future post.
Check out my two bearded guys faces on the screen – nothing just pan face nothing, lol!
We wanted to go to Tokyo Disney the first day, but it was Raining pretty hard, and by the time we got our luggage we realized we only had a half day, so we decided to check out the area after the mall visit and here are a few pictures from the first afternoon.
We had Shabu Shabu, Pork Loin. Shabu-shabu is a Japanese hotpot dish of thinly sliced meat and vegetables boiled in water and served with dipping sauces. Apparently we were eating it so wrong, we were drinking the dipping sauce like a soup and dipping the vegetables one at a time and eating them. Some one from the next table came over to explain how to eat it correctly. You take the vegetables and put in the boiling pot for 5mins, then add the meat strip in the boiling vegetable water for 1min, pull it out, dip it in the sauce and eat it, eat the vegetables in between. Honestly this was a delicious meal and we LOVED it, wish I could have eaten this everyday.
Delicious, so Good
TIP: In Japan, people will stop and help you if you look confused or lost, this is a wonderful benefit for a tourist.
This is our street where our AIRBNB was, it was filled with little stores for shopping, pets, a mini grocery store, 7-11, wine store, and about 10 restaurants. We checked out everything we could.
We played a little Pachinko – a Japanese form of pin ball, but combined with a Video Game.
You see them all over the place in the major tourist towns –
Hop On, Hop Off Buses. We love
them. This is probably our sixth time
using a Hop on Hop off, but we have no favorite.
Tip: Use the HopOn HopOff Bus service at the time and place you are in.
Tip: Buy your tickets online (best your phone in hand) – it is always saves money and time.
We have checked into it from every way, waiting in line at
the location, buying from the bus driver, buying online – the cheapest and
quickest way is buying right off your phone.
We did learn something new this trip – buy the service you are
standing in front of. We bought one we
saw driving by – but then could not figure out where the stop was – looking at
a map on a website of stops and trying to find it was – ARGH! After a 30 minute lesson of figuring out a
stop and standing at several other service stops that we did not buy (3
services with three different stops location made a difficult morning for us). Finally after a lot of back and forth and we were
on our way. Even with the bus service
app downloaded we could not find the stop quickly. Follow a bus, find the stop, buy the tickets.
TIP: Get to the stop, buy your bus passes for the
service at the stop – even if you miss that bus, another will be back shortly. Trying to figure out even on a map from your
phone exactly where a stop is at is much harder than you might think. Follow a bus, Find a stop, then buy the
Tip: Sign up for PayPal prior to your trip, link
it to a credit card – this will making buying things online so much quicker,
and you won’t have to put in a credit card while standing on a street corner.
Plus your safe if your account is compromised.
Notre Dame is still standing – battered and in renovation, but she is still standing despite what we all thought was the end of her and the fire that was so devastating only just 2 months ago.
This month David and I will be married 3 years and together 5 years. We are winning against the odds of a second marriage succeeding. Our marriage and my life is testament that regardless of your current situation, you can fight hard, and win – in a big way. Our children are thriving and growing up surrounding by love and we are a family. Six years ago, my life was so different. I was in the middle of a divorce and thinking my life was over, I was fighting for my health, my finances, and my children. I was devastated and burnt down to my core. At the time I could have never predicted that point of my life was just the beginning of things to come. I still have to pinch myself to believe this is my life. I feel so blessed and grateful, it can be overwhelming.
Seeing the Grand Dame was also a memory of 2008, and my last visit to Paris with my parents and children. When we were there, we went to Palm Sunday Mass, which was crazy busy with mass mobs of people – in fact we were separated by the crushing crowds. I was just laughing about that with my parents last night – what wonderful memories of this trip, and the memories are still strong.
Six years from now, I would love to visit Notre Dame and see her completely re-built, toast her and myself for both over coming against the odds.