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And Now Begins Page 1 of 365.

Happy New Years Eve, readers! I just realized I have not written since our return back to the states, and figured I would do a quick 2018 wrap up for you all. 

In all honesty, there has not been a lot happening since we have returned from Asia, other than some holiday festivities and a lot of theme park time. When we arrived back in the US, we first visited Mike's family in Brockport, and experienced my maximum of what I would want Winter to be, about 2 weeks of cold and snow.

We then made the 20+ hour drive for the...fourth? time this year to Orlando just in time to celebrate a traditional American Thanksgiving with the family (which I weirdly did not take any pictures of apparently?). 

With an audition opportunity popping up last minute in NYC, I once again hopped aboard a very last minute flight to the city I used to call home. It was freezing and a very quick trip, but filled with lots of NYC holiday cheer and friendly faces (including Al Roker and Dennis Quaid). 

watching Al film the Rockefeller Plaza Christmas Tree Lighting 

Rainbow bagels, Ichiran Ramen (and their new Midtown location!), & Banana pudding from Magnolia Bakery were also of course on the to do list.

Hey Rockettes, need one more? 
Times Square at Christmas Time

Sak's Fifth Avenue

The audition went really well and I am hoping to have more information regarding that later so stay tuned!

In the meantime, it was back to Orlando I went. I was very fortunate to spend a lot of time with my family this holiday season, since I have not done so in quite a few years. My nieces are getting older and older by the minute, so I was really enjoying spending time doing gymnastics, being silly, and doing some Japanese food craft kits with them, you know typical aunt things.

I have been waiting so long to try these Japanese Kracie food kits out and they were incredibly fun to make, and although they are technically edible, I would not count on them to get you that 2019 bod you are wanting.

Of course the holiday would not be complete without celebrating in each and every park, and we were so fortunate to do just that, starting at Disney Springs and their majestic Christmas Tree display.

Blaze Pizza- one of our new favorites where you can order your pizza how you want it, just like a subway! 

Did you know you can meet the Coca Cola Bear inside the Coca Cola building at Disney Springs now?!

Another festive retreat if you are looking to not actually venture into a theme park and for free admission is the town of Celebration's Now Snowing where there is snow all night, Santa and Mrs. Claus, train rides, and adorable atmosphere.

There is also the option of not actually going to the theme parks themselves, but instead just admiring the holiday decor at the resorts. Disney World Resorts often have beautifully hand crafted gingerbread houses, varying from place to place, and you might even find a hidden Mickey or two on them.

We spent some time at both Disney's Grand Floridian hotel and The Contemporary Resort to check out their holiday decor, taking the monorail between the two.

Grand Floridian

Grand Floridian

Contemporary Resort
We also took a sunset cruise and enjoyed a glittery-holiday treat to enjoy our mini staycation a little more.

strawberry.glitter.jam. say no more....

Of course, you can't avoid the crowds and the parks if you truly want to experience the holiday magic, Orlando style. With my mom working at Universal Studios, we are occasionally able to have a family trip into the parks, making the experience all the more fun.

The number one place I always feel the Christmas magic surround me is at Universal Studio's Wizarding World of Harry Potter. From the music, to the snow-topped buildings, to the warm butterbeer in my tummy...it is the coziest. 

Another festive spot at Universal is Seuss Landing where you will find the Grinch and some of the Who's making their rounds before their adorable show, Grinchmas. Be sure to also purchase a cotton candy the size of a small toddler to fully enjoy the experience.

The rest of our holiday trip to Universal included watching the holiday parade (which has changed almost completely since my high kick days over 5? years ago now), a visit to Bikini Bottom and to say hello to our pal E.T., and finishing the night with the dazzling night show on the Hogwarts castle.

Happy Holidays, Orlando's Universal Studios!

Visiting Magic Kingdom during the holidays is something everyone should experience at some point in their lifetime, however, we wanted to go to Epcot to experience the delicious treats from the Epcot Holiday Festival and say hello to some of our favorite Frozen sisters.

We also popped in to say hello to our pals Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy, who all seemed to really love Mike's hamburger from Tokyo.

But of course, being that we were here for the food, we did not have time to waste, so off we went.
my favorite savory option from America: Thanksgiving- Slow-roasted Turkey with Stuffing, Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans and Cranberry Sauce

Cheese Fondue in a bread bowl with Fresh Steamed Baby Vegetables and Marble Potatoes and Potato Dumpling with Mushroom Sauce from Germany and The Bavarian Kitchen 
second savory favorite from Germany- Sauerbraten, Red Cabbage and Spätzle
favorite sweet from Canada- Maple Bûche de Noël: Maple Mousse rolled in Gingerbread Chiffon Cake with Cranberry Sauce and Pecan Crumble Yule Log

standard German pretzel
Arepas topped with Melted Queso Fresco From Feast of Three Kings 

standard Fish n Chips from the UK
“Sfenj” – Warm Beignets with Cream, Cinnamon Sugar, Toasted Almonds and Chocolate Sauce from Morocco

Pancake Milkshake near Taste Track
When we weren't taking photos of our food, we were trying to find Nemo's dad, riding Figment's Journey to Imagination (for the first time ever!), and checking out the holiday decorations on Living with the Land.

We also found a secret hidden gem at the China pavilion where you can get a sneak peek into Disney's Shanghai Resort, which was extra fun since Mike was sporting his "I'm celebrating visiting all 6 Disney parks" button I made him for Christmas.

Oh holidays at Disney, you are truly something special, especially Epcot.

Merry Christmas, Walt Disney World Resort!

Our final theme park visit for the holidays in Orlando was to a park that is now very special in our hearts, since Mike is now an animal educator there, Sea World! Christmas time at Sea World has always been one of my favorites because of it's beautiful shows like O Wondrous Night and the ice skating performances.

We were fortunate enough to see the world's best performance of Clyde and Seymour's Countdown to Christmas, where the poor animals were not behaving as they were expecting them to, and it was hilarious. 

Sharing the holidays with family is always special, and getting to spend some time with my mom at Sea World was one of the highlights of the season (and a happy birthday to her as well!).

I haven't taken a lot of photos when we are visiting Sea World, mostly because I have really just been enjoying spending time with my husband for our first married Christmas, but you can bet there will be many, many more photos eventually. 

Seasons Greetings, Sea World!

The actual Christmas holiday came and went, and was filled with too many sweets, games, and family fun. I really enjoyed getting to spend the holidays with everyone this year, especially since we never truly know what is in store for us in the coming years. 

2018 was a very magical year for the Worboys family and I wish you all the magic in 2019 as well <3 See you next year!

ringing in 2019 watching the Magic Kingdom 360 fireworks from our neighborhood

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