Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend – Part II: Animal Kingdom and Sanaa

Published November 20, 2014 by shanisko

I’ve been working on this post for days now, life has been a little nuts and I feel like I’m starting to forget things.  This may be a lot of pictures.

After the Expo, Amy and I headed to Animal Kingdom for our FastPass+ times.  We started toward Harambe Village for our Safari and diverted ourselves to get Dole Whips with Rum.  She tried the Coconut Rum, I tried the Dark Rum.  Now, note that we had not eaten for quite some time and were both hungry and had empty stomachs.  So we were feeling quite good after our snacks.


We then proceeded to take a trek into the wilds of Africa.  Kudos to the driver for scary the bejesus out of us on the bridge with a loud “BOOM!”



Ask me about my intense childhood fear of hippos one day….it’s quite amusing.


After we returned from our long safari trip we headed toward Asia for one of my favorite rides ever….Expedition Everest.  I love this ride….like really love this ride.  I hope I feel strong enough to ride during the full marathon at Goofy.  The standbye line was short enough that we could ride once and then ride again with our FastPass+.  We decided to toss some coins into the “wishing” area that we would be able to defend our dissertations ASAP.  (Good news, I learned yesterday that I am ready to defend. Yay).




We rode twice, see above, once in the front, once in the back.  So much fun.  We were giggling so hard.

After our exciting train ride we headed to Dinoland, which is not really my favorite part of the park, mostly because I have a fear of large, carnivorous creatures.  They are the stuff of my nightmares, literally.  I have nightmares about large, carnivorous creatures.  We rode Chester and Hester and felt the floor drop out from under us as we got off.  We needed food.  Real food.  We wanted pretzels but could only find popcorn.  It did the job.  Then, against my better judgement I said, “let’s go ride Dinosaur.”

Let me preface this picture by saying that…I think I have only had my eyes open all the way on this ride…once.  Once.  That’s how much this ride terrifies me.  I also won’t do haunted houses, I’m a wimp in that sense.  I love coasters, I love thrill rides but I’m a big NO to anything that I have nightmares about.

Here’s our hilarious picture:


That’s me…in the front row, covering my eyes and screaming.  Amy’s pose is posed to make me look silly.

Don’t judge, we all have our fears, right?  I just happen to be afraid of dinosaurs.

We took some additional pictures and made our way to our Sanaa reservation.

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I was really, really excited to eat here.  I’d heard so much about the atmosphere and food.  It did not disappoint.  We started with the full bread service (which I think needs more bread but considering I’m a bread addict that doesn’t surprise me.)






My Wine Flight (Durban) I loved all the wines in this one.


I had Butter Chicken (because everyone said it was delicious and it was) and Spicy Goat.  Best goat I’ve ever eaten.




We had an excellent waiter.  When we both discovered that one of Amy’s wines tasted really off he brought her another sample of it from a new bottle.  I think the first one might have had cork in it because they really did taste significantly different.  After all was done and paid for we headed back to Art of Animation to finish our costume work and for me to work on my dissertation edits.  And bust out some more wine in the glasses we bought at the Expo.

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Busy day.  But we had a blast.

I am having surgery on my hand later today so I may not be posting again for a little while.  The next post will be about our day at the Studios and the beginning of Wine & Dine.   Though, the race itself is slipping from my memory, we all know how tough it was, but I will do my best.

In the meantime I am still raising money for Catch a Lift Fund to run Goofy in 2015.  There are multiple ways you can contribute.  First, if you would like to earn a medal for your donation you can participate in Run for Our Heroes.  If you would prefer to donate directly you can do so through the Fundraising Link.

Please help if you can.  I am getting closer to my goal every day but really could use your help.




Wine and Dine 2014 Recap – Part : Arrival and Expo

Published November 13, 2014 by shanisko

Wow.  What a weekend, right?  Despite the crazy weather I had so much fun.  But, let’s start at the beginning…as you should.

I took a red-eye flight Thursday night, with the expectation that I wasn’t going to sleep, but in a rare twist, I did….I slept pretty well.  I also managed to get a significant amount of dissertation work done waiting at the airport.  Mission accomplished.


I arrived at MCO and hopped on the first ride of the trip.  The Faux-Monorail.  I was pretty excited to be there, finally.


Then I waited, and waited, and waited for DME.  My friend Amy was already at Art of Animation, waiting patiently for me to arrive.


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Finally arrived and checked in, we made our way to our Little Mermaid room.  I love this resort.  It’s well themed, beautiful and the rooms are fun!  We were in 7864, which had a great view of the pool and was relatively quiet (except for the occasional mom yelling at her kids to get off the bed and get moving).


We dropped our bags and headed straight to the Expo.

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After Amy printed her waiver we went straight for our bibs.  The volunteers actually gave her Fran’s….yes, we didn’t discover that until after we had taken pictures.  Whoops.


Amy went back and go the right bib.  Then we proceeded to the Official Merchandise to shop.  We both got the Wine and Dine wine glasses and I also bought a Wine and Dine Magnet.  I want to put it on my car but I’m afraid it might get swiped.  After we got our official merchandise we headed to get our shirts and do some extra shopping.


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This part of the expo was a little crowded and nuts, but not too bad.  We tried several times to win bananas, Amy really needed a banana, I won on my last toss.  IMG_5438 IMG_5439

We spent some time searching for Bondi Bands that would match our costumes, found a few and moved on to see the medals next door at the Run Disney booth.  I really wish I was running both Avengers and Star Wars but I only have so much money.


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Purchases in hand, pictures taken we called the Expo a success and went to play in Animal Kingdom.




One Week until I leave for Wine and Dine

Published October 30, 2014 by shanisko

I am so ready for some Laughin’ Place time.    Granted, I still need to sew our skirts because I’ve been focusing on getting Halloween costumes completed.  Today, I start working on them and hope they turn out.  I’m still a novice sewer.

I’m ready to meet my #Run3rd and #trd friends from Facebook and do some serious nomming at the after party.

I’m ready, bring it on.

Don’t forget to enter my Rafflecopter Gu Giveaway!

Never Give Up, Never Give In

Published October 21, 2014 by shanisko

Yesterday, around 11:00 I checked my email.  And sure enough, the rejection letter from CHG was there.  I was devastated.  I cried while my little one ate her lunch.


Rabbit was extremely disappointed in my lack of focus, for a brief moment.



I applied for two more jobs, Advisor positions, at Weber State.  I will find a good job again, if it takes everything out of me.  We need to bring in more income.  We are doing “ok” but I don’t want to have to keep dipping a little into savings every month for groceries and gas.  (Prices have gone up significantly in the last year.)

So, in the immortal words of Doctor Who:


I will punch unemployment in the face.

Just because I’m almost a Doctor doesn’t mean I’m not a hard worker, in fact it means the opposite.  It means I work exceptionally hard and can be exceptionally focused on projects.  I have to be able to plan my time well, do things that are difficult and move forward.  People just need to give me the chance.

Also, because I’m not giving up, please help support my Go Goofy campaign by donating to Catch a Lift Fund at or participating in Run for Our Heroes.

Things I learned on my Longest Run…to date.

Published October 20, 2014 by shanisko

1.  Honey Stinger Waffles are WAY better than GUs.  Way better.  At least for me.

2.  8 month old springer spaniel mixes don’t get tired after running the first 9 miles with you.

3.  7 laps around the park is boring.

4.  Texting a running friend when you want to quit is a good thing.

5.  Doing 14.5 miles hurts, but not as much as running 10 miles downhill.

6.  Once I stop running intervals and start walking (for more than 30 seconds) it’s really hard to start running intervals again.

7.  People don’t follow leash laws.

8.  Horses and cows like 8 month old springer spaniel puppies. (weird).

9.  While most vehicle drivers are polite and will get over a bit so they don’t hit you there are still a few that just suck and won’t even slow down.

10.  I still have a long way to go to get ready for Goofy.

How can you help me Go Goofy?  By making a donation to Catch a Lift Fund via this link or by participating in Run for Our Heroes, a virtual run with a medal based on Captain America’s shield.


What did you learn on your longest run to date?


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