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Somebody’s Gonna Be Offended

And I apologize.

I love parties.  I like to take as many occasions as I can, and invite people over to celebrate.  Fakesgiving?  We’re throwing a party.  Christmas?  We’re having a party.  All the laundry in the house is done?  We’ll be throwing a party (when it happens).

When I throw a party, I don’t expect people to bring gifts – but more than that, I would never ASK someone for a gift.  Even if the event is one you would typically expect to bring a gift for, just because I have invited you to celebrate with us, please don’t think I have invited you because I want you to bring a gift.  I invited you because we love you, we enjoy your company, and we just think you’re special, damn it.

So when did it become socially correct to host a party for yourself and ASK people to bring you gifts?

Consider this invitation someone recently sent me:

Before this Miss Becomes a Mrs.

Come shower Me with Gifts and Your Best Wishes!

What?  You are throwing yourself a bridal shower AND you are telling me I have to come and bring presents?  I mean, I would, of course, but I am slightly ticked off that you (a) are hosting your own shower and (b) are not merely implying the obligation to bring a gift by discreetly slipping in your wedding registry information, you are telling me I HAVE to bring a gift.

Okay, so I’ve had friends who had a big hand in organizing their own showers – primarily because the actual host sought out assistance.  I think that’s fine – but mainly because there wasn’t a tacky poem insisting I bring gifts.  I’ve even had a friend tell me NOT to bring a shower gift for an event because I was helping out in other ways – but seriously?  I would have brought a gift anyway AND wanted to help, because I love this person to pieces.

I’m over it.  You do not get to organize your own party, demand people bring you gifts, and expect me to come with a smile on my face.

Oh – and while I’m pissing people off?  Have you had a baby shower for your first baby?  Is your second baby the same gender as the first?  Are there less than three years between said babies?  You don’t get another baby shower!

My apologies to those I’ve offended.  If you had sent me gifts before I blogged, I wouldn’t have said mean things.

Dining – The Real Disney Challenge

So much to choose from!!  Am I the only one that gets overwhelmed when my 180 days draws near and I have to start planning my dining reservations for an upcoming Walt Disney World vacation?  It’s a bigger challenge than the New York Times crossword puzzle!

How will I know six months in advance if I’ll feel like Japanese or German when I’m standing in EPCOT waiting for the Candlelight Processional to begin?  How can I choose between the fun and family friendly 50s Prime Time Cafe or the upscale and delicious Hollywood Brown Derby at Disney’s Hollywood Studios?

I spend hours poring over reviews at http://www.disneyfoodblog.com/ – where the team of fantastic foodies tempts me with cupcakes and pastries, new menu items and must try snacks.  Then I hit http://allears.net/index.html, where I spend an equal amount of time checking out the menus at each restaurant that I’ve put on my short list (how did my short list come to include 40 restaurants??).

After thinking I had all my dining in place and ready to go for our Christmas vacation this December, I’m rethinking everything.  I’m trying to accommodate different palates, different personalities, and different pleasures.

Set in stone is Christmas dinner at Artist Point at Wilderness Lodge.  And yeah, pretty much nothing else.

So, what are some of your favorite holiday time dining experiences at Walt Disney World?  How about any other time?

Every Once in a While…

…you just have to have a taste of Disney World.

But you can’t always get there.

So what do you do?

I have, over the years, built up quite a collection of recipes for some of my Disney favorites, and one that I’m surprised I have (but use most often) is the Boma recipe for Frunch.  I am not a juice drinker.  I don’t love juice, never drink orange juice or apple juice, and would rather have a cold glass of water if it came down to a real thirst quencher.

But I LOVE Frunch.  The combination of juices is just the right amount of sweet and tart, and this refreshing punch is easy to make and perfect for a brunch or summer lunch.

In case you’re craving a little bit of Disney World – here’s the recipe for West African Frunch from Boma.  Because it’s so hard to find mango juice, I’ve skipped the pineapple juice concentrate and used pineapple mango juice – it works just fine that way, too.

1 1/2 cups of mango juice

1/2 cup pineapple juice concentrate, thawed

1/2 cup lemonade concentrate, thawed

2 cups fresh orange juice

3 cups of water

4 Tablespoons of grenadine

Mix all ingredients together, serve over ice in a tall glass.