Disney Cruise: Aboard the Disney Wonder!

Disney Style, Travel

IMG_3094Hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to sea we go!  A few weeks ago, I went on a Disney cruise with a group of friends and we were probably the only group of young adults without children.  I say young group of adults because there were actually older (probably retired) couples that were vacationing without children too.  AKA my life in 30ish years.

“Alisa, aren’t Disney cruises only fun for families and kids?”  On the contrary!  Yes, Disney cruises are aimed towards families, but as we learned, it is first and foremost a cruise.  Which means you still get great food and dining experiences, fun cocktails and drinks, and “adult only” areas.  All of these things just happen to have a little Disney magic sprinkled in.

So how’s a group of young adults supposed to enjoy a Disney cruise?  Well, let’s start with FOOD!

Each night we dined at a different “restaurant.”  The first night we ate at The Animator’s Palate, which honors the history of Disney animation.  You’ll find animation sketches everywhere and what once started as a still black and white drawing will then turn into a full-on colored animation by the end of the night!  Throughout the night, we were excited to keep tabs on the new changes we saw throughout the restaurant.  And to join in on the magic, we all Disney Bounded as Disney animated characters.  Erika and Vince of Village Haus were clever enough to bring a black and white outfit and then a colorful outfit to change into at the end of dinner!  So clever those two.  And spoiler alert (seriously, if you don’t want to know skip ahead now!): Sorcerer Mickey comes out in full force at the end and it was the best part of the dinner.

For our second night, we dined at Tiana’s Place, which obviously serves up tasty southern inspired dishes.  And we all decided to Disney Bound characters from The Princess and the Frog.  I probably ordered 5 courses that night, which was not ideal for my all white Mama Odie Disney Bound outfit.  And if you get a chance, take a lap around the room to see all the small details.  On one wall, there were cabinets filled with photos of Tiana’s parents, her dad’s recipe box, and various frog paraphernalia.  But again, the best part of the night was at the end of the dinner when Tiana and Louis led a fun-filled jazzy dance party!

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Before or after dinner (depending on your scheduled seating time), be sure to catch at least one of the Broadway-style shows!  The first night was “The Golden Mickeys Live Show” in which Golden Mickeys are awarded to different Disney movies.  I assumed the usual characters would make an appearance — princesses, fab 5, maybe even Stitch and other critter characters if Disney was feeling adventurous.  But Disney threw me a massive curveball.  There was one portion of the show that featured Tarzan, Mulan, and are you ready for this…Hunchback of Notre freakin’ Dame!!  I may have cried a little while surrounded by small children that were constantly their parents who that character was that was walking funny.

And I cried not so much because they were some of my favorite movies growing up, but because it was just so great to see them represented in a show!  Quasimodo is NEVER in a show!  Just to see them get their moment in the spotlight and get recognition was somewhat emotional for me.  “Alisa, these aren’t even real people, they’re freaking animated characters.”  I knooowww, but they get validation and credit for being worthy Disney characters for once! 😭  But my tears dried up halfway through the Mulan segment.  Hopefully, more on that in a later post.

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Aside from great dining and entertainment, the Disney Wonder is full of prime instagram spots.  So for all those social media butterflies out there, you’ll love bopping around the boat getting all those cute photos.  For our group of social media enthusiasts, we were on a mission to take the most #basic Disney cruise photos.  And with the help of Taylor Jackson, we got some amazing shots and quite possibly the best basic Disney cruise photo ever.  Check out Taylor’s vlog to see how he captured these amazing photos!

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^The winner of the most basic Disney cruise photo.

Eating + entertainment + cute photo ops = fun for young adults on a Disney cruise!  And of course add a few drinks into the mix for an extra fun time. 😏🍹  But in general, you can always have a good time anywhere and anytime as long as you’re in good company!  And honestly, I think this trip was SO MUCH FUN because of the incredible people I got to experience it with.  Did I mention that I also cried during the last night of our cruise at dinner because I was so thankful for great time we had together and to just be there in that moment with all of them?  Oh, I didn’t? 😅  Well, now you know how grateful I was to be on this fun trip with these extraordinary people. 🤗  Go check them out! –> Leslie, Erika, Lindsay, VinceTaylor

ABW

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Disneyland Spring Lookbook

Disney Style, Style
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A Disney food adventure. 😉

So as I mentioned in my previous post, my family and I took a quick weekend trip to Disneyland back in early March.  Other than getting the chance to wear all of my Disney clothes, it was also a trip filled with FOOD. DISNEY food.

My sister, specifically, was on a gastronomic mission.  And I wasn’t about to turn down a good Disneyland Resort food crawl.  And it wasn’t just any old park food.  We were on a quest to find the best Disneyland and California Adventure eats.  She was working on a snapchat story for Tastemade, so everything had to be top notch.  My sister being the foodie took these drool-worthy photos. 😛

Top right: Poutine from Red Rose Tavern, Top left: The Grey Stuff from Red Rose Tavern, Bottom: Lobster Nachos from Cove Bar

Now day 1 of our food crawl, I did not make the smart decision and ended up wearing fitted mom jeans that have No. Stretch.  Talk about a food crawl fail.  But I’ve been dying to wear my Zara Mickey pants to the parks.  Definitely had to burp it out a few times during dinner. 😅  Anyways, I paired my Zara jeans with a churro shirt from Lucky Rabbit Supply Co.  And can I say, Mike and Gillian were amazing!  Not only are they based in San Jose (Norcal represent!), but they were kind enough to ensure that I received my shirt in time for this trip.  And they made sure to pack up my purchase and mail it out weeks before their wedding!  They’re just so great.DSC06542

DSC06544Shirt: Lucky Rabbit Supply Co., Jeans: Zara, Mickey Bag (Yes, it’s a bag!): Christopher Raeburn, Shoes: Nike, Sunglasses: Quay 

So day 2, I learned my lesson and wore something loose.  This Lazy Oaf denim dress is pretty much like wearing a huge denim sack.  Complete body freedom, but you still get to look cute. 💁🏻  But I actually had the waist taken in slightly.  I think if my chest was slightly smaller it would’ve hung better as is, but since I’ve got a unique body, I gotta tailor it to what best suits me.  Probably a sentiment that can be applied to life in general, dontcha think? 😊  And there’s your dose of positive life validation for the day! Don’t even think that’s a real term, but let’s just go with it.

DSC06586Dress: Lazy Oaf via Poshmark, Sunglasses: Free People, Shoes: Jeffrey Campbell via LF

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So I think I really need to work on getting these posts written up faster.  I’ve already returned from another Disney trip — a Disney cruise!  But if you follow me on the instas then you’re already up to speed.😉  Hoping I can write up a little something to recap that trip.  Looking through my camera roll, I already know it’ll be similar to this post.  “What I wore and what I ate.”😆

ABW

 

Rock the Dots

Disney Style, Food, Style

dsc05877Since January is usually a birthday month in my books😉, I always tend to forget that it’s also a very special month for one of the top fashion icons – Minnie Mouse!  Throughout the month of January, Disney fans everywhere are encouraged to #RockTheDots to show off their own #MinnieStyle and Disney Style.

Rock the dots also purposely coincides with National Polka Dot day.  So a couple weeks ago, I brought out my dots!  I’ve had this American Apparel dot blouse for a few years now and I love it to death.  It always adds the perfect amount of whimsy to any outfit.  But with my round Asian face and short stature, going full on whimsy can tend to make me look a little tooo doll-ish.  And if you haven’t guessed already, I ain’t always a doll.😏

So I paired my shirt with sleeker items like a polished faux suede moto jacket and slick skinny jeans with a distressed knee, which helps give the whole look a little extra edge.  And to really #RockTheDots, I paired my dotted shirt with studded dot ballet flats.  Another great example of something sweet, yet polished with some edge.  And of course, I had to top it all off with my favorite Mickey bag.🐭

dsc05888Shirt: American Apparel, Jacket: Kohl’s LC Lauren Conrad, Jeans: Carmar, Shoes: Sam Edelman, Bag: Disney x Coach, Watch: Micheal Kors, Sunglasses: Quay

And since National Polka Dot day was on a Sunday, we of course had to go out for brunch.  So we stopped by The Palm House.  Got myself the spam and eggs benedict, which was much more filling than I was expecting it to be.  But the brown hash brown looking thing on the bottom…it’s actually a rice “hash brown” if you will.  Genius.  And the eggs… perfectlypoached.  Yolk splits that were food porn worthy.  And the spam wasn’t actual spam. Instead☝️, gourmet braised pork shoulder.  Yes, I may have had to wipe some drool off my face as I write this post.😛

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And aside from the food, the restaurant itself is adorable.  Is city beach house chic a decor term?  Lots of blue with palm green accents.  And if you’re sad about having to eat brunch instead of watching your favorite team play, fret not!  But come on, who actually says no to brunch?!  But if you insist on watching the game, there is a bar area with TVs and you can happily scarf down your jerk chicken tacos or huevos rancheros while watching people professionally tackle each other.  I, personally, prefer to enjoy a hot cup of tea.☕️

ABW

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Je Ne Sais Quoi

Disney Style, Food, Style, Travel

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There’s a certain je ne sais quoi about the French expression je ne sais quoi, don’t you think?

Found that gem on google.  Did it make me sound posh and fancy?💁🏻 Unlike the cut off denim shorts I lived in while visiting Honolulu.  And even though many tourists and locals alike can enjoy all the luxurious things the city has to offer, my sister and I usually like to pretend we’re kama’aina.  For us, that means lots of shopping and eating.

To fuel up for our shopping pilgrimage, we stopped by Koko Head Cafe.  Opened by Chef Lee Anne Wong, a finalist on Top Chef, Koko Head Cafe serves up hefty dumplings and brunch-style Asian comfort food.   The cafe also captures that hometown diner feel with surf town decor and Wong’s framed personal photos.  And don’t forget to pick up a copy of Wong’s book Dumplings All Day Wong!  If you ask nicely, you can even leaf through it while you wait for deliciousness to be served.

After stuffing out faces, we needed to walk it all off…before heading to dinner of course.😅 So we stopped by Ward Village South Shore Market.  It actually underwent a huge re-model and I was excited to finally see it.  South Shore Market is comprised of 18 local merchants to showcase and cultivate Hawaii’s creative scene.  Shopping small couldn’t be any easier.  Walking through the stores, I also realized that many of the shop owners are probably POC.  Since Hawaii’s population is almost 40% Asian, it’s also likely that many of these creatives were Asian American.  So not only are you supporting small businesses, but you’re also supporting businesses owned by POC.  So. Much. YES.👏

Do you see that suitcase?  It’s filled with watercolor cards of creatures from Fantastic Beasts.  Yeah, ah-ma-zing!

And speaking of amazing, I also picked up these sparkle heel Zara boots the day before.  They were the last pair left and in my size, so you know…had to get ’em.  Don’t worry, they were on sale.😉  And one of the many apples of my eye, my Disney x Coach red cross body.  The perfect size for your phone and credit cards and comes with the cutest little Mickey hand charm.  It just has a certain je ne sais quoi, non??😏

ABW

dsc05573Shirt: Sincerely Jules, Crossbody: Disney x Coach, Shoes: Zara, Sunglasses: Free People, Shorts: Vintage

Dinner & a Movie: Hidden Figures

Dinner & a Movie, Food, Musings, Travel
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When I’m hungry and you tell me we’re going out for dinner…(photo from Soul Culture)

Obviously you know what movie I saw, so we’ll circle back to that in a moment. I promise no spoilers!  First, let’s talk about food.

Last weekend I got to visit my sister for my birthday.  She’s about 2,400 miles away from San Francisco – and traveling that far can make a girl hungry. Yup, we flew to Honolulu, HI.  And whenever my mom and I visit my sister, we usually do a lot of eating and try a good handful of new places.  This time, we ate at Piggy Smalls.
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Opened by the same masterminds behind The Pig & the Lady, I knew Piggy Smalls was going to be fantastic.  Expect unexpected asian fusion combos galore here.  My personal favorite was the hurricane creamed corn.  For those that aren’t familiar with hurricane popcorn, it’s popcorn that has furikake seasoning and japanese rice crackers mixed in.  It’s another name for addictive deliciousness.  So hurricane creamed corn is creamed corn with furikake, rice crackers, and popcorn bits on top.  I’m sure there’s much more cooking involved than just throwing furikake on top, but I’m no chef, so I’m not even going to try to explain to you why this creamed corn was the best creamed corn I ever ate.  Other winners were the Laotian fried chicken and the fish of the day.  And bonus points because the whole place is sprinkled with pig memorabilia.  Please note the small Pua figurine to the far left in the photo below.  Piggy Smalls, it calls me!

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Now on to Hidden Figures.  It was incredible.  I’m sure like many people, I never knew about these amazing WOC.  On the way out, even my sister said, “That’s crazy we never learned about people like that in history classes!”  And she’s right.  We should already know about these incredible women.  But what I love about this movie is that it shows how race, class, gender, and family values play a role in how these women live their lives.  It influences how they approach relationships, navigate the workplace, and ultimately, how they feel about themselves.   In the end, it’s what makes them stronger and smarter.  I also appreciate that the movie wasn’t an outright drama movie.  I’m not a huge fan of watching dramas in theaters since they tend to feel a little tooo heavy.   But Hidden Figures excellently addressed the impact of identity, while still retaining an element of fun and humor.

And with a full pig belly, I still decided to eat some real hurricane popcorn at the theaters.  And reclining seats?!  Yes, please.  I had to celebrate my birthday in style.💁🏻

I think I’d like to make this into a mini-series.  Every month or so, go out for dinner and a movie, then write up my thoughts.  We’ll see how I hold up.  Ok fine, it’s probably an excuse for me to go out for dinner and see a movie once in a while.  Can you blame a girl?! 🙂

ABW

OOTN:dsc05793Dress: Free People, Shirt: Homecoming, Shoes: ZOU XOU, Angry Pig King Logo: Piggy Smalls