Starting Over...

Monday, 26 September 2016

Hello, and welcome to my little blog!

If you're a long time reader, welcome back! You will have noticed that not much has been happening around here recently, but that is about to change. When I started doing my disney trip report I totally underestimated how long it would take to write, and whenever I thought about posting on my blog I felt guilty about my unfinished trip report and would just push the idea of posting off to the side. So nothing was happening at all!

I decided that I do want to get back into blogging though, so I'm restarting from today, and thought the best way to do that would be to introduce myself to any new readers, and let you know what to expect on my blog! For any of you who were reading along and enjoying it, I will eventually complete the 2014 trip report but I won't let it hold me back from posting other things in the mean time.

So, within further ado... Here's a little About Me!

As you might have guessed from the title of my blog, my name is Jilly, and i'm a 30 something teacher who lives in Glasgow with my husband and two little bunnies.

I'm a Disney obsessed, bunny loving, planner addict. I like a bit of make up, baking, and eating, as well as all things pink, cute and sparkly! So expect to find planners, prettiness, and all things girly. Here is just a small fraction of my planner collection!

I started this blog a few years ago to document different crafty things I was up to, and recently it has taken more of a Disney turn, with me sharing some of my trip reports. I will be sharing some tips for planning Disney trips, as well as Disney crafts. I also have planned some beauty reviews, planner inspiration and general lifestyle posts about what I've been doing / eating / wearing / buying.

In 2016 I've been working on goals and plans to become happier, healthier and more productive, so you might also find some posts along these lines. If that kind of thing interests you, it might also be worthwhile following my Facebook page (that can be found under the Let's Socialise tab on the sidebar) as I plan to share links and inspiration there regularly.

You'll also find me on most social media sites, although I haven't yet plucked up the courage to film any YouTube videos! To follow me on all the major social media sites, check out my cute pink buttons under the Let's Socialise heading in the side bar.

Finally, my absolute favourite thing about blogging is to hear feedback from those who are reading my posts! Please, feel free to leave comments and feedback, or tweet or email me if you have any questions or ideas.

I get a lot of questions about Disney and planning trips to Orlando. Whilst I wouldn't call myself an expert, after living and working in Disney World, as well as holidaying there numerous times, I have lots of knowledge to share. Please don't hesitate to contact me if you need any help planning a Disney trip!

So, have a poke around, check out my past posts, and subsrcibe via BlogLovin to make sure you don't miss any future posts.


Jilly xo







Disneymoon Trip Report Day 8

Thursday, 9 June 2016

Hey guys!

Sorry it's been such a long time since the last instalment but life has been hectic lately! Trip planning, various illnesses, sick bunnies, school work etc etc!

I really wanted to get my previous trip report completed before we go on the next trip in July (only 5 weeks to go!!) but it's looking unlikely now. Next time I think I'll just do food report and photo highlights. I'll keep my holiday journal so I still have that to look back on. I'm also thinking about doing some periscope videos and vlogging of our trip.

I'm doing all the remaining days from memory now so they probably won't be as detailed as the previous days anyway, so maybe I'll get through them a bit quicker!

So today was day 8 of our honeymoon, and today was the day Robert was most looking forward to - Hard Rock Hotel!! If you don't know already, a one night stay at one of the deluxe Universal hotels gives you TWO days of unlimited queue jump passes, which are valid for all the rides except Harry Potter area, and probably the new Kong ride (although I don't know that for sure yet!). As i'm a teacher we go in the school holidays and so the express pass is invaluable, and so worth the money that it costs to stay at Hard Rock.

We had aimed to be up really early, but as per our usual selves by this point in the holiday, it was all a bit slow and stop, and it was about 10 by the time we arrived at Hard Rock Hotel for check in. Our room was ready already even though check in should have been 3 or 4pm, so that was good. WE headed straight up to the room, but the room key wouldn't work! I went right back down and she sorted it out, and we were right into our room. We hadn't paid for any kind of view but we had what I suppose you might call an obstructed pool view, as well as being able to see some of the rides over in the parks. We then went down to the lobby and used our room keys to get our fast passes from the self service machine, and then it was straight out to the park.

We were so amazed by how close we were to the park, it was literally a 5 minute walk via the Hard Rock Pool to the gates of Universal!!

This is where my memory gets a bit shaky so i'm relying on photos to tell me what we did in the park that day, however i DO remember that we were like a pair of kids in a candy store with our fast passes! We loved being able to swan on and off every ride at our pleasure without worrying about queues.

One of our absolute favourites was the Transformers 3D Ride and i'm pretty sure we rode it 2 or 3 times in a row! The Mummy ride is in the same area so if I remember correctly we went on there a few times too and as always I loved this. Each of these rides we had queued, ridden and were back outside in about 10 minutes time. Like i say, the Express Pass is invaluable.

By this point it was about 12ish and we decided to head over to the Simpsons area, ride the Simpsons ride, then head for food in Krusty Burger. We loved the Simpsons ride too, but this was probably our longest wait time up to this point in the day. Only about 20 minutes, so not too long but you can imagine what the regular queue was like! Part of it was outside as well and we were melting in the heat! It was here in the queue that we already started to discuss the idea of coming back to Hard Rock for a second night the following week.

Right after this we headed to Krusty Burger for lunch. This was tasty, and we enjoyed the experience of eating in Mo's Tavern! There was a really strict queue then find a seat system which was good, and when you had your food they would show you to a table. We asked for one inside Mo's and they happily obliged!

When we ordered lunch we didn't ask for a large drink each but for some reason we each were given one (or should I say charged for one) anyway, which was a total waste as we wanted to get going right away and half of each drink went in the bin outside ET because we wanted to ride it.

Robert thought ET was a bit ridiculous, and I suppose seeing it for the first time as an adult after hi-tech rides like Transformers etc then it probably is.... but it's a classic! I enjoyed it for the nostalgia factor.

I think at this point we went back round to get on Mummy and Transformers a couple more times. before heading round towards Despicable Me. On the way there we came across a wee kind of parade / dance party type thing, so we stopped to pose for some photos.

When we got to Despicable Me we were a bit confused - the line was HUGE and we thought that surely couldn't be the express line. But it WAS! It was mobbed, hot, sweaty, noisy and never ending! We couldn't really complain coz we had barely waited in a line all day, but it was still annoying that the express line ended up taking us about 50 minutes! I really enjoyed it though, but I think we'll remember for next time to head there when we enter the park instead of leaving it til the afternoon when lines are typically much longer.

We decided then to head over to Islands of Adventure so we headed out and in that direction, only to be caught by a sudden thunderstorm just as we were passing Hard Rock Cafe. I took that as a clear sign though, and decided we should head for the bar. No complaints from Robert!

I had a strawberry mojito, and Robert had a beer. We were pondering over whether to stay here longer or make a dash back, when I realised that happy hour was starting shortly at the Velvet Lounge in the hotel! So a mad dash back in the rain it was going to be! Luckily by this point, the rain had turned to drizzle so we didn't get too soaked.

Straight to the Velvet Lounge and drinks ordered! During happy hour a selected few drinks are cheaper ( about half price if I remember right), and my favourite margarita was on the list, and Robert had a Yuengling. We ended up spending a good couple of hours in here, enjoying a chat with the barman and chatting about the classic rock ballads that were on the TV screens. This is one of my favourite memories of our honeymoon, we were just so relaxed and happy, and I cant wait to spend that time there with Robert again in a few weeks!

By about 6.30 we decided it was time to get up to the room, to try and chill for a wee while before we had to head out to Blue Man Group. We both lay down on the bed, I think I planned to nap but once I actually lay down I worked out that I only had 25 minutes or something before I had to get up and ready, and I would end up feeling worse so I ditched that idea. I just got up and took my time getting ready.

By the time we were leaving it was still a bit drizzly, but it was really brightening up and some beautiful rainbows were appearing in the sky. A nice man took some photos of us in the lobby and by the water feature outside. I took a cardi and poncho with me, but I didnt actually use either in the end.

We got to Blue Man Group, and I went for a Blue Man cocktail and bucket of popcorn, while Robert got a beer, and we settled in for the show to start. We both absolutely loved this show. It's really hard to explain what it's like, and to be honest I think the surprise of not knowing is actually better! If you're considering it, all you need to know is that it's really fun, loud, colourful, and hilarious.

At the end the Blue Men were outside and you could join the scrum for a photo with them and I managed to grab this selfie with one of them. He's giving me a look like that because throughout the show there was a bit of an anti mobile age / selfie message... then I leave the show and take a selfie with him! Whoops!

When it was finished it was coming up for 11pm, and I couldnt believe how quiet City Walk was! I dunno if it was the drizzly weather or what, but I remember City Walk from years ago as bustling and buzzing but it was like a ghost town tonight! We headed into Margaritaville but they told us they stopped food at 11 and kitchen was just closing. We debated swanning around City Walk to find something but in the end we just headed back to the hotel bar and got some bar food there, plus a couple more drinks.

I was really annoyed when I got back to the hotel as I realised I had left my souvenir Blue Man Group glass and popcorn bucket sitting in Margaritaville :( I forgot to go back the next day for it too!

After this Robert decided to do some posing around the hotel pretending he was a rock star, but I think I would be in trouble with him if I shared those photographs hehe!! After his "rock star" behavior it was straight off to bed as we were both absolutely shattered!

This was one of our best days so far! We both loved being that close to Universal, skipping the queues, chilling in the Velvet Lounge and going to Blue Man Group. We were on such a high that full day, I really cannot recommend staying onsite at Universal enough!

Thanks so much for reading, Disney lovers! I hope to get the next day up really soon, because I would really love to get this mostly finished (at least written if not published) before we go back.

See ya real soon!



Disneymoon Day 7 - World Cup Final!

Sunday, 10 April 2016


Well sorry again (sound familiar?) that it's been so long since I last posted! I thought this post wouldn't take so long given it was a bit of a quieter day, but alas, time runs away with me and so it's been weeks since I posted! So here for your enjoyment, is day 7...

Today was a bit of a more restful day on our honeymoon, no parks planned, or any solid plans other than going to watch the World Cup Final. So not many photos today, so if you're only here for the photos it will be a quick one!

I started the day with a wee bowl of cereal on the balcony. It was slightly cloudy but warm; very warm. Although I realise now that the picture looks really bright, but believe me, it was cloudy on and off!

The football wasn't until 3pm today so to start the day I headed down to the pool at our hotel. This was the one fault of our hotel, the pool area wasn't great. It wasn't awful by any means, but it wasn't the type you would be sharing on Facebook or Instagram to make your friends at home go "oooh, wish I was there". It was basic, but quiet which was quite nice.

I enjoyed reading my book in the heat, and Robert joined me shortly after. For some reason at this point I had a bit of an emotional breakdown! I started crying and Robert was like huh, what's going on?!

I don't even really know what was wrong, I just felt a bit overwhelmed and was worrying that Robert wasn't having the best time on the honeymoon I had planned for us. He reassured me he was having a great time, even though his grumpy old man demeanour doesn't always seem that way.

Emotions in check, we stayed at the pool for maybe an hour or so and then headed upstairs to get ready to head out.

About 2.30 we headed to Buffalo Wild Wings at Crossroads. It was absolutely heaving here. I have no idea why we hadn't anticipated a sports bar to be this busy during the World Cup Final, but we figured everywhere would be the same and decided to stay anyway.

There was a queue at the door with a wait list to get tables but it was clear from the people in football colours everywhere that they were here for the duration and so the wait for a table would be futile.

We managed to head through the crowds to the bar and found some standing room, and then shortly after I was able to nab a stool to sit at the bar.

We watched the game, which created a great atmosphere! We were rooting for Germany, but we were clearly in the minority as most of the place was filled with people in Argentina strips, with only a small group of German supporters in one smaller area of the bar.

There was lots of singing, chanting and banter from both sides so we really enjoyed the atmosphere.

At around half time I started to feel a bit peckish so I ordered myself some wings. I can't remember exactly what I had but from looking at the menu now I think they were probably the boneless honey barbecue.

Robert of course went for the hottest wings on the menu, which were called Blazin' hot. These wings were so hot they literally came with a warning. I didn't even dare taste them.

Now Robert LOVES the hottest of hot stuff, but even for him these were beyond his heat threshold. He ate them all but said they weren't enjoyable.

We would definitely come here for wings again - I really want to try the teriyaki ones - but Robert would be taking his hot choice down a notch.

Robert had a few pints during the football and I had one alcohol free beer as I was doing the driving today. Buffalo Wild Wings was in walking distance to the hotel but we weren't sure of the plans for later so we had taken the car.

We decided after the football to take a wander round the outlets at Vineland road. Neither of us were looking for anything specific, but we fancied a wander round anyway.

We were here for maybe an hour and a half or so, and probably spent about half of that time in the Levi's store! Aside from handbags for me, neither of us are very fussed on 'designer' stuff. I did have a peek in the Fossil shop, as I LOVE fossil, but I loved everything and couldn't decide what I loved most so ended up with nothing!

In the Levi's store we each bough 2 pairs of jeans. Now this is a bit of an aside from the details of the trip, but never in my life have I been comfortable in jeans. I always find them to be too tight on the legs, or if they fit my legs and hips, then they're too big on the waist. Enter Levi's Demi Curve. My cousin recommended these but I doubted how good they could be til I tried them myself! They were amazing!

I don't remember how much each pair cost, but I know it cost us about $100 for 4 pairs of jeans, plus we got an on the day discount bringing it down even further. Crazy prices!!

Here's a picture of Robert trying on a trendy denim waistcoat haha! (Note, he didn't buy this and will probably kill me for posting it hehe)

After our wander round the shops, we started to feel a bit hungry, and also wanted to go to Publix for some suncream. We headed to the Outback that's just beside the mall, but the queue was out the door. We decided to pop in to Publix for the suncream first, and then drove round to Longhorn to see if that was any quieter. When we came out of Publix the sky was so lovely I had to stop for a picture!

We were given a pager and told it would be a 40 minute wait. We swithered on whether to stay or not but we decided we could waste 40 minutes driving round trying to find somewhere quieter so decided to wait it out. I think we were seated in about 30 minutes in the end.

Yet again, we started out with some of the amazing honey oat bread they serve. It's sooo good! I was a bit fed up of stodgy meals so I decided to go for a sirloin salad with blue cheese crumbles. Robert went for a Parmesan crusted chicken.

My meal was really lovely, and the salad was just what I needed! The only one issue was that it came covered in grated cheese (possibly cheddar!?) instead of blue cheese crumbles so I asked and the server brought me those over separately.

Robert said his was too cheesey! Whaaaat! Too much cheese is not a real thing in my mind so to me this was crazy. I tasted a little bit and it was definitely very cheesey. I might get it if we go back - too cheesey is a major plus point for me!! He didn't finish it all.

After dinner, it was straight home to bed. I can't remember but I'm guessing it was about 10pm by this point. Tomorrow was one of the days Robert was most excited for - an overnight stay at Hard Rock Hotel! Little did we realise the amazing time that lay ahead of us! I'll hopefully get that day up ASAP!

Thanks so much for reading day 7 of our Disneymoon trip report! To check out my other days and also some wedding posts, check out my index page here.

As always, feel free to tweet or post on my Facebook page with any questions, you'll find the links up on the right under the "let's socialise" bar :)

Until next time, which will hopefully be sooner!

Jilly xx


Disney World - The Return!!!

Sunday, 31 January 2016

So you might have spotted that on my last day of my trip report I mentioned that we have booked a new trip! Yayyyy!! I promised myself I wouldn't start blogging about this year's trip until I had finished my last trip report but I got too excited so here goes!
When we came home from Florida in 2014 we had decided it would be a few years before we returned, due to needing things done in the house and other family plans such as starting a family, family weddings etc. But as time went on the trip kept creeping further and further forwards. Summer 2017, Easter 2017, Christmas 2016.
When the dining plan offers were released last April, I thought bugger it, I'm going to book a package, even though we weren't 100% sure at that point what our circumstances might be. We booked a week at Old Key West for school holidays in October, and secured all the early booking offers of free dining, free memory maker and the $200 gift card. At the time of booking we weren't sure if we would be able to go at that exact time, but the bonus was that even if further down the line we had to change our dates / resort etc, we would still hold on to the early booking offers.
Fast forward to around December time. Bear in mind that I am the instigator of all things Disney around here, and Robert usually just goes along with things. We had been considering a quick anniversary trip to Disneyland Paris in July while we waited for our big trip to Florida... But then Robert said one day, "you know what, I think we should just do Florida in July".
Well you didn't have to tell me twice haha!
So.... the plans so far!!
Robert had holidays already booked at work for July, so I started to look at packages / flights etc. What I soon discovered was that we couldn't fly direct from Glasgow on a Saturday except with virgin which was £££££. We looked at indirect, going via gatwick again. I realised again that Saturday flights were coming in more expensive, and we could get flights and car for 17 nights flying on a Friday for less than going for 14 nights flying on the Saturday. Even the difference in 3 extra hotel nights was still coming in cheaper than the Saturday 14nt price.
So flights were booked yipee! Doing the same journey with BA as last time - Glasgow - Gatwick - Tampa, and picking up a mustang at the airport.
Robert insisted on a mustang while we still can! (When we have kids that will be a no no!) and I couldn't really say no considering how much we spend visiting disney for my pleasure :)
When we arrive we will be checking into Old Key West for 5 nights with free dining plan and the $200 gift card, yay!
After Old Key West it's on to Hard Rock Hotel!!! We stayed here on honeymoon and absolutely LOVED IT! We had only booked 1 night on the honeymoon to get the front of the line passes but when we got back to our other hotel we immediately booked another night for the following week. It's pricey, but such a fun experience, and totally worth it to get the front of the line passes for the full stay. This year we've booked 2 nights in a row instead of doing 2 separate nights and I'm looking forward to spending some time at this pool!
After that, we'll be heading to Lake Buena Vista although we haven't booked that hotel yet. I'm thinking about the clarion inn - basic but cheap (since we've blown a fortune on OKW and Hard Rock lol).
Clarion Inn is on Palm Parkway so walking distance to loads of restaurants and bars and it also has a regular shuttle to all the parks.
We have got 21 day tickets for Disney World and we'll get our universal tickets sometime nearer the trip. As I mentioned above, we have 5 days on the Disney Dining Plan, and all good disney planners know that to get the restaurants you want, you have to book early. Reservations open up 180 days before, and for us, that was a couple of weeks ago.
So my choices so far are.....
'Ohana - Polynesian resort
'Ohana is an old favourite, but we didn't make it there on our honeymoon so I'm looking forward to taking Robert there. It's all you care to eat meat, with a starter of chicken wings so I'm sure he'll be happy. For me, it's all about the pot stickers, mmmm!
Chef Mickey's - Contemporary Resort
I'll be honest, I chose this one for the characters not the food. We don't always find ourselves willing to wait in huge lines for characters while in the parks so I thought a character dinner would be perfect to meet the Fab 5.
Mama Melrose Fantasmic Package - Disney Hollywood Studios
This is a restaurant that I have never really considered until I read about it on a trip report where the poster had an amazing steak with four cheese macaroni. Which absolutely had me sold. I booked the Fantasmic Package because not only does it give us preferred seating for Fantasmic but it's also a set meal package thing which allows you to have an appetiser included on the dining plan instead of the usual entree and dessert that comes as part of a table service credit. It looks really sweet inside and I'm looking forward to this one. The steak looks to die for...
Yachstman Steakhouse - Yacht Club Resort
We visited here on the last night of our honeymoon and we both really really enjoyed it. The steaks were amazing! It's a disney Signature restaurant which means this will use 2 credits of our dining plan but in my opinion it's worth it. And I'm not gonna lie, I'm partly going back here for the amazing bread service. The onion pull apart rolls served with roasted garlic and salted butter are just.... Unbelievable! I know it's just bread but it's amazing.
Our final dining reservation is for my birthday, yay! This one isn't on the dining plan because my birthday falls a few days after we check out. We're going to go for Lunch, then hop on the monorail to Epcot for some cocktails around the world and then Illuminations.
Kona Cafe - Polynesian resort.
I've never been here before, but yet again I've spotted something on a trip report that I really want to try! This time it's a Teriyaki steak with pineapple salsa and sticky rice. It looks so nice!
This photo came from which is a great website for restaurant reviews and keeping up to date with new additions to menus, seasonal foods etc. I highly recommend it if you're new to disney and don't know where to start with dining options! Or, if you're like me and just like drooling over a computer screen ;)
Aside from trying new restaurants, there's a couple of new things we'd like to try this year, including -
Orlando Eye -
Madame Tussauds -
Dolphin Spotting trip -

Aside from that we haven't made many other solid plans - Fast Pass plus will be done at 60 days of course, and I've done a rough itinerary so far so I could book in our ADRs, but it's flexible and I'm sure will change at least 20 times between now and then.
Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed and maybe even got some ideas for planning your own Orlando trip!