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All good things...

So on our last day at WDW, we *really* put the "hop" in Parkhopper! The Boy *really* wanted to ride Everest, so we headed over to Animal Kingdom. We were on our way to the back end of the park for Everest, when a cast member stopped us and said that Everest was having mechanical difficulties. We could go and get Fastpasses, but they did not know when the ride would be operational. The Boy was disappointed, but we went over to Kilimanjaro Safari and got to see the baby elephant that had born a few months ago.

After we got done at the Safari, we hoofed it over to the bus and moved on over to Epcot. We had lunch reservations at Teppan Edo in the Japan pavilion, so we wandered around a couple of the world showcase areas and saw the acrobats in France. We headed over to Japan, and checked in at the restaurant. The restaurant is above Mitsukoshi, which is one of my favorite shops in all of Disney. Mitsukoshi started in Japan in the 1600's and is a HUGE department store there. I love that they carry a mixture of really traditional clothing and arts, as well as some seriously crazy anime stuff. The restaurant is a hibachi place, but the food was amazing. Our chef was from Kobe, and was a lot of fun. I was really interested to see that the zucchini and onion blend you normally get at most American hibachi joints was here, but it was served with noodles, rather than fried rice. We did get a bowl of white rice on the side though. After lunch, we moved on over to Italy, so I could see the Venetian masks, and over to Germany, since Den wanted to see the black forest clocks.

When we got done there, Den and I got on the monorail and headed back to Magic Kingdom for one last swing through. We were joking about trying to get back into the Not-So-Scary-Halloween party, since there was another party that night. We headed on into the park, and took our last trips on Haunted Mansion and Pirates. We caught some of Jack Sparrow's Pirate tutorial outside of POTC, which I'd been trying to see for a bit. Sadly, I had to return the Haunted Mansion T I'd purchased, because the sizing was fracked, and an XL was too tight (!!!). No one had another shirt in the right size, so I decided I'd see if Guest Relations could help me later on when we got home.

It was getting on towards time for the park to close for the Party, so we went over to the bus stop, and after a LOT of irritation with the bus connections, we got to Downtown Disney. I'd been looking for a new Jim Shore piece that had been released for the 40th anniversary of WDWs Haunted Mansion. The Art of Disney at DTD had one of the pieces on display, but since it was broken, they could not sell it. :( I got the number of the buyer at the store so I could call them to let me know when the piece came in again. We went over to the Pin Shop, and got a Lanyard and some pins for Den's niece. We tried to hit the World of Disney, but the crowds were so bad, I was just DONE for the night, so we went back to the resort and packed up the rest of our stuff for the trip home. After a while, bantiarna and the family got back, after a horrible food experience at DTD, and headed to bed soon after.

Friday morning we headed off around 8:30 or so, and after a fairly uneventful drive, made it home in one piece. Saturday we relaxed at home, started the laundry and unpacked. That evening elizaravenhair hosted a "Mad Men" themed cocktail party, so I got my opera gloves and pearls on, and we headed on over. We got there a bit early, so we helped Elizabeth get things set up, and had a wonderful time with some classic cocktails. Sunday we slept in, and got ready for the work week to come.

Den said he loved the Halloween party so much, he definitely wants to go back. We're thinking about a trip again after the Fantasyland expansion is done, maybe in 2014 or so. That way we can save up, and maybe stay at the Contemporary. I definitely want to spend some more time at the Food and Wine festival, but I think I'd like to make our first day Halloween, so we can stay a *bit* longer, and see the Christmas decor as well. (In a couple of pics, you can see the light strings set up for Osbourne Festival of Lights, and the Ice lights on Cinderella Castle.)

All the pics are finally uploaded to my Webshots album, and captioned. Now to work on the scrapbook!!!!!

What a full Wednesday!

So at 0-dark-hundred on Wednesday, we got a wake up call from Stitch, and my back up alarm on my cell phone. We were up at 6:30 since we had to be at the Contemporary resort at 8:30 for breakfast at Chef Mickey's. We were up and dressed and leaving the room just about 7:15, so I decided give a knock on bantiarna's room. Lucky thing I did, because when proudsky opened the door, it was kind of obvious they were still asleep... Luckily everyone was able to get to the bus stop on time (where we found out their alarm clock had been set for PM, not AM....) We were worried about the bus, since it was 2 hours till the park actually opened, but we were able to catch a bus to Magic Kingdom, then grab the Monorail to the Contemporary.

The Contemporary was really just awesome. We got to breakfast a little early, and while we waited for our table, I noticed a picture area to the right. They were taking photo packages, so we posed, and during breakfast, they brought us the printed package. Breakfast was cool. We got visited by Goofy, Mickey, Minnie, Donald and Pluto, so I was able to get everybody's autograph. Since it was The Boy's b'day, and Tidbit's was the day before, the waitress brought them a special birthday cupcake. When we got done with breakfast, we wandered around the resort a little, and visited some of the shops. I also got some pictures of the Mary Blair murals.

The Boy wanted to hit Big Thunder Mountain, we we caught the Monorail back to MK, and caught the train over to Frontier Land. Since derwyth was starting to feel a bit better, we decided we would wait for everyone else while they rode Big Thunder Mountain. Afterwards, we went over to Adventure Land, and got Fastpasses for the Jungle Cruise. We got over to Pirates of the Caribbean, and took a ride. When we got done, we still had time before the Fastpass was vaild, so we went to the Tiki room again. By the time we were done there, the Jungle Cruise was ready.

Since we had missed the Liberty Belle the last time, we went over to see when the next trip would be. We had just missed boarding, and the next trip was not for another half hour. The Boy wanted to hit Epcot, so since we had reservations at the Grand Floridian at 3:00, we said we'd meet the gang at Epcot when we got done. I went over to Madame Leota's cart and picked up one of the 40th anniversary Haunted Mansion T's, and the Special Event music from the Halloween Parade for Den. I wanted to do Haunted Mansion (yes, again), but the line was over 60 minutes, and I just did *not* feel like waiting that long. We figured we'd go ahead and wait for the Liberty Belle. When we went back to the landing, the gang had returned since they had gotten to looking in the Christmas Shop, and now it was close enough to the next trip to just go ahead and ride now. I did get a LOT of pictures on the boat ride.

Once we got done, we parted ways, and promised to give a call when we were headed to Epcot. D & I went over and got a quick snack at the pretzel cart, then picked up the railroad, and finished the circuit around MK and got a little peek into the area where they are building the Fantasy Land expansion. When we got back to Main Street, we were going to line up for the Princess Meet and Greet, so D could get Snow White's autograph for his niece. I wanted to check with Guest Services to see what the best way to get to the Grand Floridian, so as I walked over to the guest relations desk, I noticed a character meet and greet next to city hall, and lo and behold, it was Snow White!! D got in line, while I went to talk to the guest relations staff. When I came back, D was at the front of the line. I waited on the side for him, and noticed a family was brought in from the side to jump in line. I was curious, but when D got done, he told me that the cast member minding the line told him that the family was there with Make-a-Wish. He told the CM not to worry, and by all means, make sure they got to visit with the Princess. When he was able to see Snow White, he asked her to sign a postcard for the Niecelet, and she not only did so, but wrote her a whole message on the card for us to send. How sweet!!

When we got done, we went over to the dock on Bay Lake, and caught the launch across the lake to the Grand Floridian. I have to say, the Grand Floridian is flat out beautiful.. We were there early, so we took the advice that the lady at Guest relations gave us, and looked around the resort a little, and wandered around the shops. I found some awesome soaps at the Basin White shop, and will have to order more when I run out!! a little past 3, the hostess said our table was ready, so we sat down, and had a lovely tea with scones and cream, tea sandwiches and pastries. I had the Princess Breakfast tea, which was a Rooibos blend with flavors of vanilla and strawberry. D had a Russian Earl Grey. When it came to the end of the tea, I was told that since I was celebrating my birthday, I got to choose an extra pastry, and the server brought me and another young lady celebrating her birthday a rose.

When we got done with Tea, we hopped the monorail again, and headed over to Epcot. Extra Magic hours were that night, so we met up with the gang, and wandered around the World Showcase for Food and Wine festival. Billy Ocean was playing at the outdoor theatre, and I have to say.. he's gotten pretty white-headed there! The showcase was pretty crowded, and some of the guests were enjoying the *wine* part of the festival a bit much! I do admit, D & I picked up some Cosmo Slushies in the French pavillion, and my they were good!!!! We wandered around a bit, and got to ride Malestom in Norway before finally calling it a night.

If it's Tuesday...

So after being out fairly late Sunday and Monday, we slept in a bit on Tuesday, and got out of sync with bantiarna and the family. We had gotten a message from her that they were at the pool, but by the time we were ready to meet up they had gotten back to the resort. so we changed and decided we'd head on over to Hollywood Studios.

Last trip the Studios had been one of my least favorite parks, but on the drive down, we'd listened to some of WDW Radio's podcasts. One was about the Streetmosphere characters in the Studios, so we tried to keep an open mind about the whole park. When we got to the park, we headed straight over to Toy Story Mania, to try to pick up a Fastpass, but we were so late that all the Fastpasses were gone. The posted wait time was an hour, so we decided to make due, and get in line, since we probably would not have another chance to get to ride it. The queue was amazingly detailed, and the audio animatronic Mr. Potato head was amazing. He's one of the "Living Character Initiative" projects that included "Turtle Talk with Crush", and the "Monster's Inc Laugh Floor" I was in my pink Pirates shirt that day, and as we came around to the front of the queue, Mr. Potato Head said "Hey, you in the Pink Shirt, who's your favorite toy?" When I said Buzz, he asked me if Buzz has paid me to say that. :) The ride was pretty amazing, and I would have loved to go a second time, but the while the wait was really only about 45 minutes, we had other things we wanted to do. After we got done at Toy Story, we went by Muppetvision 3D, and stopped by the AFI Villians exhibit that was at the end of the Backlot tour. We also found "Mulch, Sweat and Tears", a cover band playing in the "Streets of New York" Backlot.

We headed over to the Dockside Diner to grab some food, and got the BEST sausage and pepper sandwich, stuffed in a french bread loaf. While we sat at lunch, I noticed some crates sitting around the diner, and I went to investigate. The crates were hysterical. One was from the "Anita Doubleset Ledger Company" that was being shipped to "Max Bialystock, Bialystock and Bloom Theatrical Productions"... After lunch, I hunted up some bandaids for my blisters, we headed on over to "The Great Movie Ride". We were going to try Star Tours, but the warning at the entry that stated if you had back issues, you might want to reconsider the ride, made us reconsider. we walked through the queue, and took the chicken exit. :( We were not there at the right time for the Indiana Jones show, so we wandered around some of the shops, and went back for the show. Following some of WDW's hints, we found the well near the entrance to the Stunt show and tugged on the rope. Tee hee. When the show was over, we went over to Walt Disney: One Man's Dream, and caught up with bantiarna and proudsky. Since it was Tidbit's birthday, we headed on over to Epcot to ride some of the rides she liked, but sadly, most of the stuff she wanted to hit was closed. We did get into The Living Seas with Nemo. We headed back to the resort, since it was getting late, and we had a breakfast reservation the next day. We did stop at the Marketplace in the resort for dinner, and I tried Plantains with my Mojo Pork dinner. Oh my goodness that was YUMMY! I may have to try to make them at home! While we were in the market, I went by the package pick up, and got the artwork we'd purchased the day before. Instead of trying to carry it along with us, I had the store send it to the resort pick up, which was *really* handy. Tidbit got a special birthday dessert, and we all sang "Happy Birthday". After dinner, we walked back to our room, and set a wake up call for 6am, and went to bed....

All Around the World.....

When we last left our intrepid Adventurers......

After a wonderfully full (and WET) day at MK, we went to bed, and woke a little late the next morning. After stopping at the Center Market for some coffee, we headed over to Epcot. The line for Spaceship Earth was crazy long, so we decided to walk over to the Imagination Pavillion. On the way, I stopped at the Art of Disney shop, and we found a cute print of the Haunted Mansion, with the Hitchhiking Ghosts out front, with the hearse and Leota floating in the full moon. It wasn't too expensive, so we picked it up for the living room. There were also a couple of paintings that riffed on the stretching room portraits, one with the Wicked Queen sitting on the Huntsman's Grave, and Snow White as the tightrope walker. Sadly they were WAY out of our price range.

After our little side trip, we made our way to the Imagination ride. We slowed down to listen at the "office" doors, and had some fun with the puns. Figment is my favorite character in Epcot, and I just love the ride with a passion. (I do miss the "Dreamfinder" who invented Figment. Someplace I had a picture of him in the park. Probably at Mom and Dad's....) After Imagination, we caught up with bantiarna, proudsky and the kids, and went to see.... Captain Eo!!! Yeah. We went there! Looking at the film from an 80's perspective, it was amazing and groundbreaking. Even in 2011 it was pretty impressive, though the story was a bit cheezy... Once we got done there, we headed to the World Pavillions for our lunch at the Rose and Crown pub. I was so proud of the Boy, who really branched out with his food, and tried the Potato Leek soup and Bangers and Mash. I had a lovely Roast beef with Yorkshire Pudding, and Mashed Potatoes. derwyth had the Bangers as well..

After lunch we wandered around the Pavillions, and we got to see Mary Poppins and Alice in the UK Pavillion. We meandered over to the Moroccan Pavillion, where Den and I *promptly* got lost. Seriously. That Pavillion is not so big, but there are a lot of twists and turns inside, so you can get seperated and confused pretty fast. After that we buzzed over to Japan (of course) where Miyuki-san was molding candy. Sadly she no longer gives it away, but it is donated to a local children's hospital.. We wandered into Mitsukoshi, and I did something I wanted to do since I was a little kid. They had a tank of Oysters where you could select one, and get a pearl. Laugh at me if you like (and some have) but I did get a lovely Silver pearl, and had it set in a pendant, After that, we headed back to the resort, since we had to get ready for the Not So Scary Halloween Party!

Once we got dressed, we got back to the Magic Kingdom, and got going. Of course we went on Haunted Mansion *again* (yeah, we rode it at *least* 4 times..) But for the party, they had the cast in totally different makeup, had the house exterior lit very dramatically, and there was "ghost" on the front lawn interacting with the guests. When we got off the ride, I realized they had opened the area in front of the hearse, and had Photopass guys out. We went over and got our picture taken, and discovered that they were going to add some special effects when the pic was done. We found some of the trick or treat areas and got some candy, then found our spot for the Boo to You Parade. The parade was AWESOME. Got to see the Headless Horseman and a lot of the characters close up. When the pirate float came around, Jack Sparrow and Angelica were on board. I blew Jack a kiss, and he flirted back with me a bit. After the parade, we grabbed some drinks and headed to the Castle for the Villain Show. Afterward there was a meet and greet, and I was able to get my picture with the Wicked Queen. I showed her my bag (with her picture holding the poisoned apple) and she commented that she did not like to advertise her "Whole Food" line.

We hung out at the Castle, since the fireworks show was coming up quickly. We stayed right in the castle "courtyard" and got to see the projections on the castle, and got a great view of the show. Den liked the parade so much, we lined up for the 10:30 run, and I got some better pictures of the parade (just not the horseman. )8 ) When the pirate float rolled around again, Barbossa came over towards our side, and when I cheered him on, he came over and kissed my hand.. Jack looked down,and spotted me on his way past. He looked away, and then did a double take. I waved, and he gave me a "naughty naughty" gesture. LOL! We moved on into Adventureland to ride Pirates, and got lots more candy. When we got off the ride, I saw Jack in the courtyard of the fort, but the cast members said his line was closed. *pout*... we wandered a bit more, and moved back to the Castle for the next Villains show, and this time I got to meet Captain Hook and Dr. Facilier. Meanwhile Den got in line and met Malificent. After a while we headed out, since it was getting late, and went back to the resort to sleep.

Tuesday's adventures coming soon!!!!!

M-I-C.... K-E-Y

Let's see, where to start...

Saturday we were up bright and early. We'd planned on heading out around 6:00 am for Disney, but a general lack of sleep conspired to keep us in bed, so we did not get rolling until sometime around 7:00. We stopped for breakfast in the heart of Gamecock country, and over breakfast derwyth joked "We are pilgrims in an unholy land". bantiarna's response was "Well get out of Orangeburg!" We hit the road again, and had fairly smooth sailing, until we hit the I-4. Rain and traffic made the last few miles a total pain. Also, I agree with the Top Gear boys. I HATE CARAVANS!! We got to the first night's hotel around 5ish, and went out for dinner. Rain was still heavy, so we stayed in the room, and hit the sack *very* early.

The next morning we were up and out before 8:00, and we got to the Caribbean Beach Resort and checked in. Since the rooms were not ready, we dropped our bags off with the bell service, and parked over by our rooms. (We got the Pirate themed rooms in Trinidad South, and they were remarkably tasteful.) We headed over to the bus stop and waited for the Magic Kingdom bus. While we were waiting, a cast member was playing trivia games with the guests. She started a 20 questions type game challenging the guests to come up with the character she was thinking of. After we narrowed it down to a Short haired human male, who was not in a Disney film or TV show, but could be found in a ride in the Magic Kingdom, and was too cowardly to be a hero. I got the answer* and won a pirate hat!

We got to the Magic Kingdom, and discovered the puddles were *quite* deep. Luckily as we got onto Main Street, the water was running off, and the rain was starting to lighten up a bit. Den and I headed over to the Town Square Theatre for the Mickey Mouse meet and greet. The front queue has posters all over for "Magician Mickey", and the greeting area is his dressing room, complete with carrot munching bunny in a top hat, and doves in a cage. Den was highly excited about meeting Mickey, and we got some great pictures with him. Afterward, we wandered over to the Haunted Mansion and explored the interactive queue, which was awesome! The new Hitchhiking Ghost effects are also totally amazing! We also managed to fit in Peter Pan's Flight, Cinderella's Golden Carousel (sorry, don't *care* that they renamed it!!) and Tomorrowland Transit Authority. We also hit Space Mountain, which was a bit of a tactical error for my neck, but oh well. We hightailed it back to the resort so we could get our bags in our rooms. I had also arranged a little surprise for my sweetie when we got to our room.. i had ordered a Welcome to Disney arrangement from the floral department, which had some Mickey ears, some crispy treats, a hidden mickey book, and a light up bat for Halloween. He was very tickled by the gift. then we went back to MK for the extra Magic hours and the Main St Electrical Parade. After a ride on Pirates, the Hall of Presidents, and another trip through the Haunted Mansion we went back to the resort, and went to bed.

Monday's adventures coming up next!

*The answer was The Caretaker in the graveyard scene at the Haunted Mansion.

Happy Birthday to me!

Yes, I know it's a month early but... derwyth, bantiarna and proudsky and I just got back from WDW. It was Den and my birthday gifts to each other, and Tidbit and The Boy's birthdays fell earlier in the week, so as one castmember put it, we had a "festive" group. :)

This trip we mostly stuck around Magic Kingdom and Epcot. We did manage to hit Hollywood Studios for most of an afternoon, but only spent part of the morning at Animal Kingdom. Primarily we wanted to get to MK for the Not So Scary Halloween Party. WOW!! That was a fun, fun, FUN event. The special parade was awesme (got to flirt with Jack Sparrow twice!) and we got pictures with several of the Disney Villians. The fireworks show was also incedible. Totally loved it! The new park elements that were installed since our last trip were amazing. I LOVED the interactive queue and the new Hitchhiking Ghost effects in the Haunted Mansion, and Toy Story mania was totally worth the wait for the attraction. Disney s really ramping up the interactivity in the parks, so waiting in line is not so annoying.

We also did a few more "grown up" things, like afternoon tea at the Grand Floridian. Highly recommend this if you have the opportunity. I had a lovely Princess Breakfast Blend, that was a Rooibos base with Vanilla and Strawberry notes. OOOOHHHHHHH yummy! They also had a gorgeous service, with Royal Albert tea set.. Just elegant. And since my lovely travel agent mentioned that we were there for my b-day, I was presented with an extra pastry choice at the end of my tea, and given a very pretty pink rose. :)

I will get a full trip report typed up, but now I am letting my poor tired, blistered feet a rest. and will be hitting bed soon.... Good night all!

Writer's Block: Once upon a time…

What is the first line of your favorite book?


Two actually:

In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.

And:
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife

Head over Water...

Yes I am still alive.

Though it was questionable last week....

Yeah I bought cigarettes last week. No I DO NOT want to hear the scolding. The hubby did not even think of fussing, and he has to live with me....

The merger finally closed Friday/Saturday. After we closed Sat, I was up to 62 hrs for the week. (Of course two of those hrs were out of the branch picking up ambassador gift baskets, and getting stuff for our "clubhouse".) Each of the stores has a TD employee from some of their stores that came down last Weds and will be here through Thursday. Our Ambassador came down from Connecticut, and has been really great, helping us through all this mess. SHe was very happy with us, since we had everything ready to roll.

See around the end of May we got 50 boxes of forms and equipment and planograms for where it all had to go. It took us 3 days to sort though it all and a week to get it put where it belonged. Apparently some of the other stores did not do as well. (In fact I was told one store had not opened thier boxes until last Tuesday.....) So far most everything has been going well (*knocks wood*) with the exception of the ATM. We finally got one installed, but it has taken 2 full days to get the stupid thing up and running. Oy.

I really love the new debit card machine. We have instant issue cards, so when a customer opens thier account, they get the card that day. Very cool!! I also think the new systems are much more user friendly, so I am happy with them. On the down side, we are still waiting for the new tellers to get trained, so I have been pulling double duty as a teller and on the desk, and I have no idea when I will be back to 5 days a week, but the OT is good for now.

So now I am off to get some epsom salts in the foot bath, and I think it will be an early night tonight....

And oh yeah: No fair taking the Big Man so soon Universe! I am glad I finally did get to see the E Street last year, but I am sad that the experience will never be the same, even if the Boss keeps the E Street together....

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Been a long time since I rock and rolled

So, yeah.. Been a bit since I last posted.

Hrm.

May 19 was derwyth and my 15th anniversary. Because of some stuff at work, he was actually home on a Thursday night, so we went out to dinner at Travinia's. Very good Italian! It probably at the same price point as Olive Garden, but much better recipes.

Merger stuff at work continues apace. As things get closer, we're all much more stressed out, as can be expected. Next week I go to teller side training. We have hired 2 PT employees, but they probably won't be ready to run a drawer until after the conversion date, so I get to run a drawer until they are up and running. They are finally installing an ATM at our branch, but it will not be running until after the 18th... We also have a million freaking webinars and online classes we have to finish in the next 2 weeks. *sigh*

Let's see.. In other news, we're starting to look for a house. Den is sick of the apartment, and I can't really blame him anymore. The damn handyman cannot seem to get the plumbing over the cabinets fixed correctly, and the lack of insulation makes this place a nightmare to heat and cool. With the heat up over 90 last week (IN MAY!!!!) we finally broke down and turned on the AC, but only have it set at 75-80.... We are in the process of getting pre-approved for a mortgage, and found out that most of Pickens County is considered "rural", so we can get a low rate USDA mortgage on a house. And since we are first time buyers, there are a bunch of programs we qualify for to help with closing costs etc. Now to find a nice place in our price range.

Went to go see Pirates 4 over Memorial Day weekend. It wasn't too bad, but I certainly hope they make another one, because it really wasn't the film to end the franchise on.....

Still prepping for the WDW trip in October. I think we have 125 days left. I can't wait to go see the Halloween Parade and the the new upgrades they have done to the Haunted Mansion and, believe it or not, Star Tours.

Spent last night at fibergeek's celebrating the little man's 1st birthday. She made the cutest Lego block cakes, though he did not understand the whole "make a mess with your little cake" thing. He is a cutie though! I had to laugh though. You could tell this was a Scadian child, as *EVERYONE* got him books for his birthday. LOL! I had found kits for soft, cloth books, and sewed up the Teddy Bear Pirate book, and a Jungle animals book. Really cute. We also spent the last hour or so, flipping through some Wonder Woman graphic novels to give user some ideas for the Halloween party. Outside the big 3 female DC characters (WW, Batgirl and Supergirl) it's kind of hard to come up with a women's costume if you are not a real hardcore DC fan. Luckily, since I was a Batman Animated fan in college (and Den was playing Arkham Asylum) Harley jumped to mind pretty quickly....

Not much else going on currently. Hopefully we'll get out of the merger morass soon, and things will smooth out. Once we get everyone trained and schedules worked out, I think we'll be o.k... (fingers crossed!!)

Kicking butt!

Or belleh, as Elizabeth put it.. This weekend was Feast of St. Anthony down in Clinton. derwyth arranged for the Saturday off, and we headed down to work with the rest of the Soutoners. Due to various illnesses and scheduling snafus, Elizabeth, Patrick, Den and I were pretty much the crew for most of the morning, but since we had done a lot of prep last weekend it was not too terribly hard going.

Elizabeth had given me some almond stuff to try to work into marzipan but the meal was too wet to work well. So I went and got some almond paste at the store and made marzipan from scratch. Since Anthony had the famous story of "preaching to the fish" we made some "bugs" (for bait) and some fish & fishbones for a laugh. I also brought some of the gumpaste flowers for some extra prettiess. Everyone seemed to enjoy them and Mistress Sine was especially happy with my little bees. (Of COURSE I forgot to get pics. *grump* )


The feast itself was awesome, and everyone that's spoken to us has been *very* complimentary about the food. YAY!! We were also awarded a Hydra's Coill for the group's outstanding efforts in feeding everyone. Awesome, aewsome weekend. :)

Now it's back to work and playing catch up with the merger stuff. *sigh*

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