Blue Bayou: Lunch

Alec and I made a trip out to Disneyland over the weekend to visit a good friend. We had done some research and decided on Blue Bayou as the table service location of choice after reading some glowing recommendations.

We managed to get a 1:40 PM reservation for Monday (December 4) only two days in advance. I had to check the Disneyland iPhone app a few times throughout Saturday, but sure enough a reservation opened up and I grabbed it.

We arrived a few minutes late for our reservations (the Pirates ride was a little backed up and offloading took a bit longer than expected), but the concierge had no problems. We requested a table near the water, which is why I believe our wait was closer to 30 minutes after arriving.

I must say, the wait to be placed by the water was definitely worth it. Throughout our dining experience, we waved at Pirates of the Caribbean riders and just had a blast. It was fun looking at the different parts of the entry to the attraction and just be engulfed in the setting of New Orleans. It was definitely a ‘true Disney’ experience where you just forget about the world outside of Disneyland.

The entrees are set up as a two course menu. You can ask for salad with a choice of ranch or vinaigrette or a cup of gumbo as your first course followed by the entrée. My friend, Annie, and I both opted for the bone-in rib eye with salads while Alec chose the bolognaise with gumbo.

I must also note, throughout your experience your server and anyone clearing plates will ask if you would like bread (or more bread). Not gonna lie, we said yes every time and the three of us went through three baskets of bread. The bread is completely free and delicious (maybe even more so because it’s free) and is flavored with a little rosemary. Each basket is essentially a mini loaf with three to four portions that can be easily pulled from the loaf. You get two kinds of butter, plain and smoked. We tried the smoked butter and agreed it tasted a little like bacon, but all of us preferred just going with the plain butter.

bread

The salad was very good, but different than expected. I must admit, I didn’t read the fine print and I don’t like gorgonzola cheese much, so I ended up picking out some of the larger chunks while eating. However, I didn’t have any issues polishing the salad off and before I knew it, the gumbo in front of Alec was wiped clean.

When the main entrees came out, I was stoked. The rib eye came with a cup of mac and cheese with gouda and seasonal vegetables, which were green beans, small zucchini, and cherry tomato. I ordered my steak medium rare and received a steak that was closer to medium, so if you like your steaks bloody, I’d suggest noting this to the server. Again, I had no troubles eating through the steak and thought it was quite good, just a bit more cooked through than I had anticipated.

My seasonal vegetables were great, but the mac and cheese left me with something to be desired. The green beans had a little crunch, which I love, and the remaining veggies were seasoned well. The mac and cheese was good, but not great. There was more breading than cheese, so I found it to be a little dry. As you can probably guess by now, I still had no issues finishing my meal.

Alec enjoyed his bolognaise and the shrimp I tried from his meal was good. Alec said he enjoyed the entrée, but he could’ve settled for a big bowl of gumbo over the bolognaise because he liked it so well. He also received a little dish of bread with sauce (last picture), which he did not finish and I was too full to try (very helpful, I know).

Overall, I understand what the hype is about for Blue Bayou. You really can’t beat the atmosphere and fun of watching ride-goers go by while listening to bayou sounds. If you’re planning a trip out to Disneyland, I’d definitely say this is worth your time just for the experience.

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Tsum Tsum Subscription: Wreck-It Ralph (November 2017)

When I opened the box for this month’s subscription, I’m not going to lie, I was very pleasantly surprised. After the sort of ‘dud’ month with Runaway Brain, I was wary of what this month’s box would be. But Alec and I both agree, this is probably the biggest ‘bang for your buck’ item we’ve gotten from this subscription.

Not only did we get a very well made mini Wreck-It Ralph and a micro Fix-It Felix (peep Felix’s tiny little nametag), we got the whole arcade cabinet to boot! It’s hard to even put a price on something like the arcade cabinet, because it isn’t something I’ve seen Disney put on their website yet, but I’d probably value this as a $30-$35 item base price if Disney were to list it.

From a little digging on eBay, I’ve seen bids as high as $40 on eBay and list prices in the $60 to $80 range, which doesn’t surprise me because this is such a unique item and Wreck-It Ralph is an awesome movie with not enough merchandise.

I know that Vanellope does not fit into the Fix-It Felix game, but I still would have loved to have had her incorporated somewhere – I am hoping that a Wreck-it Ralph line of tsum tsum may be in the pipeline!

All in all, my faith in the Disney Tsum Tsum Subscription has been renewed and I can’t wait to see what Disney has in store for December (meanwhile, I am patiently awaiting the delivery of my Disney Treasures box)!

Toys “R” Us Find: Sleeping Beauty Collection

While waiting for Michael’s to open (Holiday Hours threw us for a loop), Alec and I decided to walk around Toys “R” Us because it was virtually the only store open at 9AM on a Sunday. I am glad we stopped in, however, because they had a decent selection of tsum tsum minis available.

Trying to finish my Sleeping Beauty collection, I grabbed the Aurora and Maleficent tsums for myself. I did notice that the quantity of fairies was much higher at Toys “R” Us than Target, though, so if you’re still on the hunt for Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather, I’d suggest dropping in to Toys “R” Us first.

Surprisingly enough, there were some left over (or very early) Easter tsums. While I do own plenty, I try to limit myself by steering clear of seasonal or holiday themed tsums. Though if the advent calendar goes on sale after Christmas, I may have to make an exception.

Also, as hinted in the photo, all things tsum are 20% when you enter your rewards numbers (membership is free), which saves $1 per tsum. It’s not a lot, but it helps!

So if you’re still looking for Sleeping Beauty (or Tangled too, actually) tsums, head on over to Toys “R” Us!

Target Find: Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather Tsum Tsums

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When shopping at Target, I always manage to convince Alec to run by the tsum tsum display in the toy section just in case there is anything good. While I usually do not find any tsums of interest (almost always the same selection), I feel as if I hit the jackpot this time around when I came face to face with Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather.

Unfortunately, when these cute little fairies showed up on Disney’s website, I assumed it wouldn’t be an issue purchasing them at a later date when they went on sale. I bet wrong, however, because the box set sold out quickly and before I knew it, resellers were charging astronomical prices.

With that background, I was both shocked and excited to see the fairies in person and I shamelessly snatched them up and headed to the check out. While I typically try to buy the minis on sale at around $2-$3, I didn’t mind buying these at $5 each since it had been so long since I’d seen them for sale at MSRP.

So if you’re still in the market for the fairies to complete your Sleeping Beauty collection, I’d suggest making a Target run to see if they’re sitting waiting for you!

Tsum Tsum Subscription: Runaway Brain (October 2017)

I was surprised to see that Disney opted for semi-obscure titles two months in a row. And I must say, I wasn’t terribly impressed with this month’s box. While I can appreciate getting original tsums with original concepts, I just didn’t fall in love with these little guys.

After a quick Google search, I read the synopsis of Runaway Brain on Wikipedia. In short, it’s a classic Frankenstein-esque short film that definitely fits in with the upcoming Halloween holiday. So while I appreciate the originality and timing, I just didn’t feel that these had a high value.

Apart from Dr. Frankenollie, I imagine it was quite easy to produce the Mickey Mouse and Julius tsums, as they’ve already made the template for normal Mickey and Pete. I just felt that these didn’t scream quality and craftsmanship like many of the others, mostly because of the tsums’ likeness to previously made characters.

My sentiment for these tsums seems to be shared with resellers online too, as eBay has this month’s sub box listed for as low as $23 with free shipping, the lowest I have seen a box listed for to my memory.

So while I like the imagination and Halloween spirit put into this month’s box, I cannot say I am terribly attached to the tsums received. Will I sell them? Probably not, but I can say this is the least exciting box I’ve gotten so far. Here’s to hoping that next month will be awesome!

Disney Treasures: Haunted Forest (October 2017)

So, I’m a little late to the game in joining the Funko Disney Treasures subscription, but I wanted to wait it out for a few months and see if the boxes were as really good as they seemed. With a promising start (I must say the Dumbo in the first box almost had me convinced on its own), I decided to join in the fun of this subscription. And I must say, I was not disappointed.

Costing a total of $36.95, this box was packed full of fun stuff. The box itself is adorable, designed to look like a treasure chest, and when you open it up, the lid has a cute little map.

Of course, starting to delve into the box, I was met with a real ‘treasure map.’ This map gives a good idea on what the exact contents of the box are and what the uses are for each item or the concepts behind them.

3. map

As shown on the map, the box contained a great many items, including a Magic Mirror patch, Jafar pin, October 2017 sticker, and one of mine and Alec’s personal favorites, a nice, large Maleficent dragon.

The fun has only just begun though, as there’s more in the box! There’s a Cruella de Vil Dorbz as well as a cute Nightmare Before Christmas ‘Zero’ bag for those of us still trick or treating. Sadly, I don’t see myself having much use for this bag, but it is mighty cute.

Lastly, the box contained a tin box with a Haunted Mansion ghost inside. I had Alec take a bunch of pictures because I was confused on exactly what it is. In essence, it’s a cute little ghost figure in a nicely themed Haunted Mansion tin.

So let’s get to the pricing portion:

  • Magic Mirror Patch – $5 (a guess, really based on a quick online search)
  • Jafar Pin – ~$5 (I’m making this based on pricing for a mystery tsum pin.)
  • Maleficent Pop Figure – $20 (for a larger pop, however I’m seeing pricing as hhigh as $140 on eBay, which of course I don’t know if someone will buy at that price)
  • October 2017 Sticker – $0 (I am thinking this isn’t something someone would buy, rather just a cute thing to get with this box.)
  • Cruella de Vil Dorbz – $8 (this has pretty much no mark up online)
  • Zero Trick-or-Treating Bag – $10 (based on similar bags online)
  • Haunted Mansion Tin / Figure – $15 (this is more of a guess)

With these estimates, I’d value the box at a grand total of $63, which is over twice as much as I paid (when taking out the $6.95 shipping costs). So I’d say that this box easily gives a bang for your buck when it comes to content, quantity, and quality of items.

I can say with confidence that I’ll be signing up for December’s box, Snowflake Mountain!

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Tsum Tsum Subscription: The Flying Gauchito (September 2017)

I have to say, Disney heard my call for ‘obscure, lesser known’ Disney films loud and clear when they came up with the Flying Gauchito for this month’s subscription box.

Honestly, I am not familiar with the Flying Gauchito, but I did recognize Burrito vaguely. However, as far as tsum tsum go, these guys are mighty cute. As noted on card, Burrito’s saddle is removable, which I think is a neat feature and speaks to the quality and thought put into these characters. While I don’t have an excuse to remove the saddle, which would in turn force me to pull Gauchito off (he’s connected with little plastic ties), I do like this a feature. Perhaps my favorite part of this month’s box is that underneath Burrito’s saddle are little pudgy wings, which are too cute not to photograph. And I’m not going to lie, I love that his name is Burrito.

So while Disney definitely went for the lesser known, I think they hit the mark with a quality set of tsums and definitely put the thought into executing them well, which makes it worth the money spent. This also give me an excuse to go watch some more Disney movies to get familiar with these two little cuties!

Mickey Hat: Five Below

While Alec and I were browsing around Saturday, I thought it would be fun to drop by Five Below and look for tsum tsum. Unfortunately, there were no tsum tsum worthwhile (apart from a few I already had, but the tsum stash appeared to be pretty dry). However, we did stumble across this cute Mickey hat for (you guessed it) five dollars.

The hat itself is a snap back and the Mickey is kind of like one of those iron on embroidered decals you can find at your local craft store. So the Mickey itself is embroidered onto the hat, more so stuck on. So while I wouldn’t call this the highest quality hat, for $5 one can’t really complain. Plus it isn’t something to worry about or get upset over if it gets blown off at the parks.

So if you’re looking for a nice, inexpensive hat for your next Disney trip, look no further! I can’t wait until we get some good use out of it at the parks!

Tsum Tsum Subscription: Oliver and Company (August 2017)

It’s that time again! And this time, it’s better than ever! Oliver and Company is one of my all time favorite movies. Although the beginning always has me feeling a little sad, the movie picks up and has a wonderful ending. It’s seriously one of the cutest films, in my opinion.

I am so pleased that the past two months’ boxes Disney has decided to go with lesser known classics because I feel that we are really starting to get some unique, awesome tsums out of it.

While I loved the Little Mermaid as a kid (I always wanted to be Ariel for Halloween but my mom would always direct me to other ideas that didn’t involve showing off my little kid chubby tummy), it just doesn’t scream ‘unique’ or ‘awesome’ like The Emperor’s New Groove and Oliver and Company do to me.

Although these just hit the market, it appears the Oliver and Company tsums are on resale sites in the $40-$50 range, which again doesn’t surprise me just because of the uniqueness of the tsums.

I am still a little hazy on the prices for micro sized tsums, as they still aren’t available in singles. However, the Star Wars 40th Anniversary micro 4-pack is $20 face value so that would put each micro in the $5 range. Of course, since this is an anniversary set of Star Wars tsums, it’s possible they cost more for the commemorative value. (Heads up, this set is on sale for only $12 currently if you were curious – I already bought them for my brother!)

I got a little off track there, but was I was aiming to get across is that if each micro is $5 (or $4 if you take away the commemorative aspect?), then these little cuties are in the $24 to $30 face value range, which appears to be right in line with the cost of the box. But as noted above, these are going for a pretty penny on the resale market if you’re a subscriber who isn’t a fan of Oliver and Company (is there such a person?!).

But anyway, another box, another awesome surprise. I feel as if these are only getting better and better – I’m looking forward to September!