Disneyland and California Adventure Parks @ Anaheim, California

Last month (September 2021) we spent two magical days at #Disneyland to celebrate my birthday and our 6th year wedding anniversary! And we park hopped to the Disney California Adventure park on our last day. 


We had so much fun since it was @make_it_ranis and Little Miss’s first times going to Disneyland. And I have never been to Disney World nor DisneyLand during a holiday, so being at Disneyland during the Halloween festivities made this Disney visit super fun!

And I was so happy for my daughter who got to see and take pictures with her favorite Disney characters, with all the COVID19 precautions in place. 


As a public health professional, I was very impressed how the Disneyland cast members reminded everyone to wear their masks during the indoor rides and upon entry into a shop or restaurant. Also there were many hand sanitizers, especially at the ride exits. 
Overall, we had a magical time! 


Here are my favorite food pictures from our Disneyland trip, and several photos above are from using #DisneyPhotoPass (which I believe is totally worth it paying for the unlimited pictures taken by the Disney photographers). 

It was my daughter’s first time eating a pretzel, so she truly enjoyed this Mickey Mouse face-shaped pretzel! And you can find these vegan pretzels at various snack carts throughout the Disneyland park.

Another first was eating popcorn! My daughter had two bags of vegan popcorn during our two visits at Disneyland!

And the third “first foods” that my daughter tried was Dole Whip! Little Miss loves pineapples so she definitely enjoyed the vegan Pineapple Dole Whip float and soft serve we had during the two days at Disneyland!

It was pretty hot during both days at Disneyland so we stayed cool by indulging in these icy snacks-

This Minute Maid soft-frozen strawberry lemonade was great at California Adventure when the sun was blazing in the afternoon. You can get these yummy cups at any snack cart throughout the Disneyland parks.

This icy lemonade slush drink from the Edelweiss Snacks stand in Fantasyland was refreshing during a hot day at Disneyland:

 

During our last day at Disneyland, we park hopped to California Adventure. We enjoyed seeing the Coco movie theme area in the Paradise Pier area. Here we enjoyed the vegan hot apple pie and Mexican tacos lunch at Paradise Garden Grill:

        

Here’s a video when we ate lunch at  the Carnation Cafe in Disneyland, a few days after they opened up again since the COVID-19 closure:

See my post about our dining experience at the Carnation Cafe.

And here is a post of when we celebrated my birthday brunch at the Storytellers Cafe.

In the Downtown Disney area, we enjoyed going to Salt & Straw and Sprinkles. Both places had vegan desserts, yummy vegan ice cream flavors at Salt & Straw and vegan red velvet cupcake at Sprinkles, which we happily indulged in!

We cannot wait to go back to Disneyland in a few years. For now, it will be WDW more often (since it’s closer to us!)

Have you been to Disneyland and/or Disney World during Halloween?

Carnation Cafe @ Disneyland, Anaheim, California

When it was decided we were going to Disneyland, I was so excited to plan our activities! There are yummy fast food options at all the Disney properties. However since we had two days at Disneyland, I wanted to enjoy a nice meal at a nice sit down restaurant in the park.

I was so excited when I was able to book a character brunch at the precious Storytellers Cafe in the beautiful  Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa  (you can read the blog post here) and at the Carnation Cafe inside the Disneyland park.

The Carnation Cafe recently opened on 9/16/2021, which was a few days before we were at Disneyland, and they are known for their comfort foods. I was so excited because I wanted to try all the yummy dishes there, like Walt’s favorite chili and the  Chicken Fried Chicken. And we did!

We shared a cup of Walt’s favorite chili

This Chicken Fried Chicken plate was my husband’s, in which he enjoyed it but he wished there was more!

And I ordered the popular chicken salad, which I don’t normally order salads at restaurants, so it was nice to eat something different and healthy!

My daughter, who has multiple food allergies, was able to order some of classic comfort food favorites, which included an allergy-friendly burger (kid’s fun size), steamed broccoli (one of her favorite veggies), and a fruit bowl! And in good Disney fashion, we had no worries of food allergy reaction eating at this fine Disneyland eatery.

We were all satisfied and full after this delicious lunch and had a lot of energy to ride more rides at Disneyland, the Happiest Place on Earth!

Have you eaten at the Carnation Cafe before?

Storytellers Cafe in Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa @ Disneyland, California

Last month due to a COVID-19 surge in Hawaii, we changed our vacation plans to Los Angeles, CA. I only had like 2 weeks to book activities in California. Despite the change of travel plans, I was still excited that we planned to go to Disneyland, which the last time I was there (I actually ran through the parks) was in 2015.

One Sunday before our trip, I attempted to see if there were any openings for a character brunch….and there was! At the Storytellers Cafe in the beautiful Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa

It so happened to my actual birthday so I was so happy to be with my favorite Disney characters at brunch with my family! And even though there was still a pandemic going on, the characters visited our tables, standing at arms length!

When we arrived, we spoke to the chef of what they could offer my daughter with food allergies:  unlimited allergy-friend Mickey waffles, assorted fruit, sausage, bacon, and special potatoes from the back.

And my husband and I enjoyed everything from the brunch buffet!

Even the Disney gang stopped by several times!

Despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it was great to spend my birthday at brunch in one of the nicest Disneyland resorts at  the #HappiestPlaceOnEarth!

Have you had brunch at the Storytellers Cafe?

 

 

Terralina Crafted Italian – Allergy-Friendly Pasta @ Disney Springs, Orlando, FL

When we were at Disney Springs in June 2021, we ate at Terralina Crafted Italian. I was hesitant at first because of my daughter’s allergies. However, the server was great about inquiring more of what my daughter can and cannot eat. But when I saw the description of the Wild Mushroom Rostini (asparagus, sun-dried tomato, toasted garlic, & olive oil), I knew my daughter would love it! This dish is actually vegan and gluten-free (we do not have a gluten allergy)

My daughter loved it! And so did I. I was actually sharing this dish with her and I tried not to eat it all!

Also, the fried calamari and table bread with olive oil for dipping tasted so fresh and delicious!

We will definitely come back here!

Vegan Ube Donut– Everglazed Donuts & Cold Brew @ DISNEY SPRINGS, ORLANDO, FL

 During the Easter holiday, we went to Florida to visit my parents and in-laws. Lucky for us, my parents live close to Disney World (like a 20 minutes drive without traffic to the Magic Kingdom).

Whenever we are in town, we like to go Disney Springs since we usually do not have enough time in a weekend to go to the Disney Parks.  At Disney Springs, you can shop and dine at some of the best restaurants in the Orlando area! 

I blogged in the past about the allergy-friendly bakery, Erin McKenna’s Bakery, where we usually go when we are in town to purchase some yummy goodies for my daughter.

There’s another spot where we can get goodies, which is the Everglazed Donuts & Cold Brew at Disney Springs.

We have been trying to go to this donuts place when we were in Orlando during the Christmas and New Year holidays. Good thing we were able to go this trip without waiting in a long line! And we were all there to taste the Vegan Ube Donut (and the other yummy, not-so-allergy-friendly ones)!

The verdict: the vegan ube donut was really delicious! And my daughter loved it!

We went to this yummy spot with my brother, who is a food blogger @Droolius.

And my daughter enjoyed another ube donut the next day!

Have you tried this delicious #vegan #ube donut at @everglazed_fl yet?

Birthday Lunch – The Crystal Palace @ Disney World Magic Kingdom, Orlando, FL

This weekend we celebrated my daughter’s pre-birthday Disney celebration at the Magic Kingdom.
It definitely felt different being at Disney this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and having to wear a mask at all times (when not eating and stationary). However, the park was capped at 35% capacity so we were able to ride more rides this year due to the smaller crowd! Also, my daughter saw her favorite Disney characters from a balcony show and character cavalcade.
And I was a germaphobic and an allergy mom prior to COVID-19, so I still made sure to carry many wipes and clean our hands and arms after each ride and before we ate or drank. Yeah, I’m that mom!
This year instead of a character breakfast, we had lunch and dinner reservations at the Magic Kingdom.
For lunch at The Crystal Palace, the helpful chef came out and discussed with me the food allergy accommodations on the lunch menu. And my daughter really enjoyed her allergy-friendly prime rib and garlicky veggies (green beans and roasted potatoes) entree. I shared this meal with her and I am glad that I did because that was a huge prime rib!
In fact, all the portions were larger than we thought a lunch meal would be so we were pleasantly surprised with all the food we happily ate. And my husband finished what was left of the delicious prime rib plate.
My husband ordered the Crispy Fried Chicken dish. And our friends who joined us for lunch got the Blackened Catfish & Shrimp and Country Fried Cauliflower meals.
For dessert, the chef delivered to my daughter and I a beautiful allergy-friendly strawberry shortcake. And it was so delicious that my daughter almost finished it!
And for the not allergy-friendly desserts, there was this beautiful assorted dessert plate:
We really enjoyed the Crystal Palace for lunch and we plan to go back soon!
See below for the post about our dinner reservations  at Be Our Guest.

Birthday Dinner – Be Our Guest, Disney World @ Magic Kingdom, Orlando, FL

Another spot we had reservations while spending the day at the Magic Kingdom was at

Be Our Guest

Our dinner reservation was at 625pm right before the park closed, so I was glad we could end the magical day with a delicious meal.
The main ballroom where we were seated at was just beautiful!
After we were seated at our table, Chef Armando had a chat with me about what he could customize for an allergy-friendly meal for my daughter and I to share. I was pleasantly surprised with the alternatives since I was told beforehand by a vegan blogger that they did not have a good experience at this spot.
I think since we talked to the chef, he was able to tell me what he could customize to keep my daughter safe from her allergens.
For the appetizer, he made the French Onion Soup vegan with no cheese topping and added vegan croutons. Surprisingly, my daughter really enjoyed this soup! And, she didn’t want to share our appetizer with me!

I ordered the Grilled Center-cut Filet Mignon as our shared allergy-friendly entree. It came out with “clean” green beans and carrots (just with salt & pepper). I think my daughter was so full from the French onion soup that she didn’t eat much of the entree. Her portion was more food for me, so I enjoyed the steak and veggies for the both of us!

For dessert, the chef said it would be too tricky to alter ingredients because my daughter had multiple allergies (dairy, eggs, peanuts, and seafood). So, he asked if a fresh fruit bowl would be okay. Good thing that my daughter loves fresh fruit! And she really enjoyed the large strawberries and grapes on the dessert plate.

I was able to enjoy the not allergy-friendly charcuterie appetizer and bread plate with my husband. And for dessert, the beautiful (not allergy-friendly plate) had the yummy grey stuff! I didn’t know what to expect, but the dessert was both pretty and yummy!

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I forgot to mention earlier, but after you order your meal you are allowed to check out the two other rooms. I was happy to see that each table was properly social distancing from each other and if you were not eating while at your table, everyone was required to wear a mask while you are up walking around the restaurant.

And we got to see the Beast himself twice!
Overall, it was another enjoyable pre-birthday celebration at Disney for my daughter!

I am glad we still went, despite the ongoing pandemic and such. Hopefully next year we do not have to wear masks, but I know I will still be a germaphobe and an allergy mom!

Birthday Brunch – Chef Mickey’s @ Disney’s Contemporary Resort, Orlando, FL

Last year on Saturday, 1/18/2020, we celebrated my daughter’s birthday at Chef Mickey!

Disney property dining is well known amongst the food allergy community for their food allergy safety and excellent service. When you go to a Disney dining location, you are recommended to speak to the chef and he/she will come to your table and discuss the specific food allergies.

We did just that and we were thrilled not to have to worry about our daughter having a food allergy reaction at brunch! The chef at Chef Mickey’s that day really made sure that our daughter’s food allergies would not be a problem. She was served delicious dairy-free and egg-free Mickey shaped waffles, sausage, and fruit, while my husband, mom, and I enjoyed the brunch buffet.

And for at the end of the brunch, she enjoyed allergy-friendly cupcakes and cookies!

Overall, it was an excellent experience! And I cannot wait to do it again

Unfortunately, I am sad that this year when we go to Disney World to celebrate her 3rd birthday that we won’t be going to a Character Breakfast. Yes, it is because the ongoing pandemic of COVID-19, but I am please that Disney is protecting us and keeping us safe.

We are actually going to Disney World this weekend, while they are at 35% capacity. And we do have lunch and dinner reservations at two restaurants at the Magic Kingdom park, so stay tuned for those blog posts!

Vegan Ice Cream – The Greenery Creamery in Orlando, FL

Another place we visited while we were in Orlando for Christmas was The Greenery Creamery.

I have  been wanting to come here since I started following this unique ice cream shop on Instagram and Facebook. The spot offers both regular and vegan ice cream with many yummy flavors to choose from!

Non-vegan flavors on the right and vegan ones on the left shown in this video:

 

Three out of these four are vegan!

Left to right: vegan cookies & cream milkshake, classic vegan ice cream sandwich (with sprinkles), vegan blueberry lavendar scoop, and non-vegan sticky toffee ice cream scoop.

It was all delicious! And my daughter really enjoyed her classic vegan ice cream sandwich that she didn’t want to talk to no one until it was finished!

As you can see, this is our new favorite ice cream shop in downtown Orlando! 

Vegan Baked Goods – Erin McKenna’s Bakery at Disney Springs in Orlando, FL

Whenever we are in Florida, I always try to go to the Erin McKenna’s Bakery at Disney Springs . My parents live nearby (like less than 10 minutes without traffic!) and I always enjoy going to Disney Springs, even when I was attending college at UCF and it was called “Downtown Disney” back then!

Since it was Christmas Eve, we decided to venture to Disney Springs to see the Christmas trees and lights.

And of course to go to the vegan bakery!

PLEASE NOTE: This is a vegan and gluten-free bakery, in which the only nuts they use in their yummy baked goods is coconut. So if you have a tree nut allergy, please be aware of this.

Since there was a wait for going into the bakery due to COVID-19 precautions, I was able to decide on which yummy vegan treats I was going to order for my daughter.

It’s hard to leave the store without buying everything, so I told myself that my limit is 3 items for that visit.

And before I was able to get a bite, my daughter was already enjoying the ice cream sandwich, which had yummy coconut ice cream between two delicious chocolate chip cookies.

Also, I ordered my daughter a cinnamon sugar donut (for next day’s breakfast) and a vanilla cupcake for an anytime dessert!

My daughter loves the treats here and so even though the baked goods are pricey, just seeing my daughter smile and enjoy something allergy-free from this bakery is totally worth it!

From My Family To Yours- We hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

And as we go into a new year, please be safe!