Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort Review

During our December trip, we had the wonderful opportunity to stay in Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.



No, not in the overwater bungalows…but we were still quite excited.

Even though we have stayed at the Contemporary many times, we have always wanted to try the Polynesian, but since it has a slightly higher room rate than the Contemporary, we always just chose the Contemporary…especially since you can walk to Magic Kingdom from there.

But December was special because we headed down to Walt Disney World to partake in several activities and meetings with the WDW Magazine staff that we work with. Since there were so many of us, we were able to get a SWEET group rate that had us saying “When can we pay?” before you could snap your fingers. We couldn’t pass it up.

We stayed in the Aotearoa building on the first floor. Don’t ask me how to pronounce it. I love staying on the first floor, especially with a stroller and two kids. The upper floors may have a better view, but I’d rather skip 249384 elevator trips during a week stay.



Luckily, we had just a short walk to the main building, so we felt close enough to everything, without any of the noise.

The room is pretty much the same as the Contemporary, with plenty of space for our family of four.



Right as you walk in, there are two closets and a coffee/fridge station.



Where the Polynesian beats the Contemporary hands-down is the bathroom. The Polynesian had a long countertop, with plenty of space to put our stuff. At the Contemporary, there are two large sinks and an itty-bitty counter between them. We end up only using one sink because we put all of our stuff in the other one.



The Polynesian tub/shower was much larger and I had no water temperature issues. At the Contemporary, you go from cold to scorching center of the Earth in 2 seconds without touching anything.



Since we were on the first floor, we had a little patio area with chairs. The kids, however, loved that we could see the monorail zipping by! They were quite entertained.

So much space to walk around in the main living area…



There are 2 queen beds, a sofa, and a sitting area…



And a desk area and drawers.



Since it might be a while before we head to Hawaii, Bora Bora, Tahiti, etc. it was nice to get the vibe of being there…minus the 18 hour flight with two young children.

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I also loved coming back to this audience after mousekeeping took care of the room. We don’t always get our room cleaned during our stay, but it’s nice when they put some special touches in there for you.



Upon our arrival, we were greeted with leis. I was sad they were fake, but the kids thought they were the best things ever.



Even Sheepy got lei’d!


After we checked in and put our stuff in the room, we then went out to the beach to watch the fireworks at MK. It was so convenient! Even better was that it was a night of a Christmas Party, so not only did we get to watch fireworks when we wouldn’t have been allowed in the park anyway, but it was Holiday Wishes, with more perimeter bursts…definitely fun to watch from a bit further back than on Main Street.



Having the bungalows certainly creates less of a view for those watching from the beach. Before, people could spread out over the entire beach area…but now, there is just a small area to the left of the bungalows that everyone was standing around in. I think it would help if Disney trimmed the trees on the island in the middle of Seven Seas Lagoon in order to see the Castle and lower fireworks.

After the fireworks, we walked right upstairs to ‘Ohana for dinner. It doesn’t get much easier than that. And since we only had a short walk to the room afterward, we took advantage with these.



Ohana is a great place for kids. Trent is a bit picky, so he had a special plate of kid food brought out, with chicken tenders and macaroni and cheese.



Although, he did think the Polynesian noodles were fun…



Aubrey, on the other hand, will eat what we eat and chowed down on noodles, chicken, salad bits, and more. Now if only she would leave her hair clips in, she might actually be able to see what she’s eating.



Ahhhh, the best part indeed.

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The kids each got a special cupcake…good, more bread pudding for me!!!

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In addition to Ohana, they have Kona Cafe. We’ve eaten there before, but not this trip. The main dish that most people think of is the Tonga Toast, but we cheated this time and bought it for half the price in Captain Cook’s downstairs and ate it in our room!



Captain Cook’s was also good for grabbing a quick meal before heading to the park. There aren’t a whole lot of options, but since we only ate there a couple of times, I wasn’t bored.



The splash/pool area for kids is now our favorite in all of the WDW…yes, even over Art of Animation, which is everyone’s favorite, I guess. The Polynesian had slides, a portion that was deep enough to be a pool for the little kids, zero entry for the babies, water guns and more.

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Aubrey dressed for the occasion in her pineapple swimsuit.


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I even convinced Trent to go down the bigger kid slide. He screamed at me and fought, but a good mom pushes their kid to do stuff that’s scary, right? No? Oh well, he did it and was super excited about it…I even coaxed him into doing it again, but he stuck to the small slide after that lol.



As we enjoyed our time at the pool, Brett walked over and got us some Dole Whips so we could enjoy them while the kids played in the water. Yum!

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The view from the pool area isn’t so bad, either.



At checkout, we called to have help with bringing our bags to the car, and for the first time ever, we were picked up in a golf cart and driven to our car! Now THAT is the kind of service I could get used to!



I love being on the monorail…on more than one occasion, one of us went to MK on our own or stayed at the park longer than the other. Brett even took the kids to the Grand Floridian for lunch one day. It’s just so convenient, especially when you have kids. One night, we arrived to a particularly long line for the monorail, so we walked to the TTC instead…it was less than 10 minutes…and would be even less for the people that are on that side of the resort (we were on the opposite side, but some people could see the TTC from their rooms –> however, I hear those are the people that also have to deal with hearing the Ferry horns all day/night too, so pick and choose what’s important to you there).

The walk to our room from the TTC at night was so calm and relaxing…looking at the new bungalows and the Castle lit up in Dream Lights….and sleeping babies haha.

The one downside to the location of the Polynesian is that you can’t conveniently walk to Magic Kingdom. You can walk to TTC and then take a Ferry or Monorail, but we LOVE the Contemporary more than any resort for this fact alone…you can walk to and from MK in less than 15 minutes. No waiting in monorail or ferry lines at the end of the night…there’s just a different feeling of freedom that comes with knowing you can come and go without considering what the crowds are doing.

We really liked the Polynesian and the kids LOVED their water area. We wanted to rent a small boat, but the weather wasn’t so nice that day, so we opted not to, but that would have been another fun thing to do. I would definitely stay there again, especially with a group rate! Ha!

Show up Big to the Big Game with P&G and Walmart

Who’s excited for the Big Game coming up? Growing up, my family members were huge sports fans. Games were on every Sunday and Monday night, at least, and friends were over to cheer on their team and have a good time. The funny thing, though, is that almost every single member of my family had a different favorite team. Because of this, I had a different favorite team every year! I couldn’t decide! But what I gathered from that, and still believe to this day, is that it wasn’t necessarily that I had to pick one specific team to cheer on, it’s that I liked the overall excitement of it and just wanted to cheer, and see good plays, and for everyone to be happy.

Let’s talk about getting ready for the Big Game by looking and feeling your best, too! I was recently sent some P&G products that are available at Walmart that will help you show up to the Big Game in a big way.


Crest Whitestrips


It’s no surprise that any gathering of people here results in being in numerous photos. I am the photographer’s wife, after all, and that means there’s a camera or smartphone out at all times snapping away photos. And while I prefer to take photos of food and my kids, for those times I am in the picture, I want my teeth as white possible. Crest Whitestrips will get your teeth pearly white in less than 14 days!

Crest 3D White Whitestrips Professional Effects

  • Removes up to 14 years of stains
  • Results last up to 12 months
  • Advanced Seal™ Technology means no-slip grip stays put
  • Uses the same enamel-safe teeth whitening agent dentists use


Head & Shoulders

head & shoulders


For those of you whose favorite team has dark colors, don’t let your jersey have flakes on it! Use Head & Shoulders to get rid of anything that would deter from you showing those team colors!


Head & Shoulders Classic Clean Shampoo

  • Fights dry scalp, calms itchy scalp, and relieves irritation
  • Gentle and pH balanced for daily use on all hair types, even on colored or chemically treated hair
  • #1 dermatologist-recommended dandruff brand
  •  Clinically tested and 100% flake free


Gillette Venus Razor


Lastly, sorry to those folks in the North right now, but down here in Florida, we’re gearing up to have some mild temperatures for the Big Game. So that means we can bust out the shorts and flip-flops, am I right? Make sure your skin is ready with the Gillette Venus Swirl!

Gillette Venus Swirl Razor

  • FlexiBall technology helps to contour better to tricky areas, like knees and ankles
  • Five Contour razor blades individually adjust to every curve
  • Water-activated MoistureGlide serum provides incredible glide
  • The MicroFine comb guides hair to the blades


Aubrey is ready for the Big Game!

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Everything you need to keep your #GameDayTraditions going is available at Walmart. For more great pre-game, game time, and postgame products, check out Walmart’s P&G page dedicated to the Big Game: traditionsforgameday.com



So, now that you’re ready for the Big Game, looking all fantastic and stuff, how about those wings, chips, and soda? 😉


This is a sponsored post for SheSpeaks/P&G. Thanks for reading!

Shop Disney Parks App Review (it will take all of your money!)

For those of you that visit the Disney parks, have you ever had that feeling right after you head home from your vacation that you should have bought that thing you wanted in the one store in the park? Or that you forgot to go back and buy something when you were leaving?

Well, I get that feeling all the time. I talk myself out of buying stuff at that moment, or I don’t buy something when I see it because I don’t want to walk around with it and can’t have it sent to my room because I’m checking out the next day.

Or…and this is the big one…you’re not going to the parks again for a while, but you know they just got some really nice new merchandise that is not available online at DisneyStore.com. How ever will you BUY ALL THE THINGS?? {Insert cry baby face emoji}

Shop Disney Parks App – that’s how!



I discovered this app during our last trip. I don’t know how long it has been out, but it is amazing. Basically, if something is sold in the Parks, you can have it shipped to you at home. Not everything that’s in the parks is available on there, but many things are. There are a lot of other cool features for shopping while you are in the parks too, but I’ll get to that in a bit.

The app is free – but trust me, you’ll be paying…for lots of fun Disney stuff!

The main page displays new arrivals and any current promotions. You can search for a particular item, or just browse the categories.



You can search for a particular item or just browse through all of the categories. Then you can purchase the item and have it sent to your house.

I ordered a new Magic Band and it arrived within just a few days. I even got free shipping (a current promotion) and maybe even a passholder discount (the discounts were grouped together so I couldn’t tell).

It was displayed under the “New Arrivals” section. I just went to it and tapped “Add to Bag.”



I was choosing Home Delivery, but you can also choose Park Gate Pickup and Resort Hotel Delivery.


It came wrapped in Walt Disney World tissue paper, making it even more fun to open.


Official Disney Parks Merchandise!!


Even though the Magic Bands are non-refundable (per the box) I did receive a receipt and return form for if I need it. I’m guessing that’s standard, though.

It was almost like I went to WDW and bought it in person, minus the 3.5 hour drive!


If you’re in the parks, another fun thing you can do is scan a barcode of an item and have it show you where else in the Park(s) you can find that item.



This would be useful if you wanted to buy something “on the way out” or wanted more of an item than what was available at your current store. Or if you had something at home, maybe you bought the last time you were in the Parks or someone gave it to you as a gift, you can scan it to know where to get it again the next time you’re there.



The scan feature works really well! It pulled up the item before I even had the barcode all the way in the box – which made getting a screenshot of it (like above) very difficult!




I would totally use this feature if I was in a store in the parks and had something I wanted to buy, only to see that the line at the cash register was super long. I would scan the item, buy it through the app, and then select Park Gate Pickup or Resort delivery!

Using a similar feature, if you see an item on the app, it can tell you where to find that item in the Park(s). We could have used this when we were looking for some hot Halloween items 2 years ago…they sent us to Downtown Disney and Pop Century and neither had them…the entire WDW was sold out – we had to buy it on Amazon haha.

Just tap “Find on Map” and you’ll be given a map everywhere that item is sold.



I zoomed into Magic Kingdom and selected the Emporium…it even shows you what the store looks like so you know where you’re going and if it is in stock at that location.



So you can then bring home some Disney Magic, or have it shipped to you without barely lifting a finger!



Seriously Disney? Do you not get enough of my money already??


Shop Disney Parks App Review

Why I Stopped Using and Selling Jamberry

Some of you may remember my post announcing I was becoming a Jamberry Nails Consultant back in 2014. But have you noticed that I haven’t posted about them since? Don’t worry, I don’t remember what I post about either. 😉 Well, I stopped selling Jamberry very shortly after I started. I’ve had this post drafted for a long time now, and figured I would finally share my honest thoughts on why I stopped both using and selling Jamberry.

No Jamberry


I had reviewed a sample the year before and thought they were great and then tried them again in the summer and was just amazed at how they stopped me from biting my nails. I decided to become a consultant because I wanted the discount since I knew I would be wearing Jamberry forever – I was so tired of being a nail-biter.

I didn’t personally know any consultants I could sign up under, and the person that sent me the freebie to review was no longer a consultant (should have been a sign…). So I did a few searches and came across a few successful Consultants and chose one that had a very helpful and informative website with videos. I emailed her to let her know I would be signing up under her. She didn’t respond super quickly, but she did say she would be sending me a welcome package (not required, but just her way of being a Leader). I never got anything. No big deal to me, but it’s just the fact that she already made a promise she didn’t keep was a little bit of a let down.

I signed up on the first of a month, so I could maximize the amount of time I had to achieve what Jamberry calls my “Fast Start.” The Fast Start was 3-4 months after first signing up and each month you had goals to reach, such as sales goals and a minimum number of consultants you had to recruit to your team. In return for meeting your goals, you would be rewarded with free products and bonuses. I saw women getting shout-outs from their leaders for reaching their Fast Start goals all over the place, so I figured it would be easy.

Even before I got my Consultant kit in the mail, I was already working on a website and creating promotional material, such as sample cards and ads. I even started my launch party on Facebook. I had done so much research on my own that I was proud for being ahead of the game. And it’s a good thing too though, because although I was in a Facebook group with my Leader’s team members in it (hundreds of them), the few questions I did have, I would post them to the group and email my leader and never got a response. Or I got tired of waiting for a response and found my answer myself after digging deep for it.

As far as my Facebook Launch party, this is what Consultants do to announce to their friends and family that they are now Jamberry Consultants and to get everyone hyped and hopefully result in sales and new recruits. Ok, nothing wrong with that. Except I’m not the type of person to “bother” people about stuff like this. I decided that I would only post once on my blog and once to friends and family, and whoever joined the party or specifically asked me about Jamberry would be the only ones to hear about it from then on. Companies will tell you that you’re not bothering anyone by sharing your love for a product, but trust me, you’re annoying somebody. The only other times I broke that rule was when I posted a couple of photos on Instagram or a blog post about our trip to WDW when I had my Disney nail design on. I really was just proud that I actually had nails for once and wanted to show the world how pretty they looked.

Disney Jamberry


When the Launch party first started, I was excited to get a few sales. I held a giveaway in conjunction with the party, as well as gave away prizes for people during the party for commenting and playing games. I will admit that I definitely prefer the shift to online parties versus in-home parties. Getting invited to home parties has always been awkward for me. I feel FORCED to buy because I like my friends, but one should never feel forced to shop, it should be fun. But throughout the entire online party, I felt like I was forcing people to read posts and that everything I posted was corny and salesy (is that a word?). I just wasn’t comfortable with it at all.

Jamberry also had strict rules about creating your own materials, photos, etc. If you had a picture of your nails, you couldn’t have any writing whatsoever on the photo. You really weren’t supposed to make your own business cards or sample cards either. They wanted you to use their stuff and buy the additional materials from them. This was hard for someone just starting and wanted to make their new venture their own and not just stick to the cookie-cutter business model that everyone else was following. I just felt like my creativity was severely limited in regards to social media photos.

Another aspect that bothered me was the custom designs. Jamberry calls it the Nail Art Studio. You can go in and design your own Jamberry nails – it really is a fun idea and I’ve seen some amazing designs out there. Each design has to be approved by Jamberry so that it is not violating any copyrights or trademarks, which I can totally understand. However, their approvals were so inconsistent. I would see someone get a design approved and a similar one be denied. Then, all anyone ever wanted were the Disney designs (see photo above), which they kept modifying each week what they would and wouldn’t allow. I wanted to do the right thing and not “steal” someone else’s design, but I never found the original person that created them. Instead, I found tons of other people making crappy copies. Well, at least that’s what I got when I ordered some from another consultant to send to my clients that wanted them. I’m so happy I had them sent to me first instead of directly to the clients. I had to find someone else to quickly order from and luckily, the new person took pride in her designs and they looked so much better. But the fact that Jamberry let that poor design pass any quality inspection is beyond me. In fact, in my quest to find the Disney designs, I joined some groups on Facebook and I would constantly see how Jamberry messed up their custom designs, with obvious shifts in printing, blank nails, etc. Do they not look at them before they are sent out?

Although I created some of my own designs, I stopped offering them almost immediately for 3 reasons:

1) Unless I had them shipped to me first and then I shipped to the customer (double shipping costs and time), I would never know if the design came out the way I intended. I wouldn’t want to have a customer disappointed thinking my design was the problem.

2) Too many rules and inconsistency. Will my design be approved once and then not approved the next time? I didn’t want someone to order and then have Jamberry deny it.

3) Too confusing and costly. If my customer wanted to purchase a design, they would have to purchase a Jamberry gift card and give me the # and I would have to order the design. They couldn’t just go order it themselves, like the rest of Jamberry’s catalog. This gets confusing because Jamberry only offers a certain gift card denominations and the customer doesn’t easily understand why they can’t just purchase it in one step. It gets even more confusing when it’s not your customer, because consultants can’t benefit from other consultant’s customers. So you have to go through that process at first, then find another consultant with that design, ask them how often they order, fill out their form (or whatever process that consultant has come up with) then choose where you want it shipped, and if it’s shipped to your customer, your name isn’t even on it for them to know.

And the big reason I say it’s costly is because every time a design is ordered, there is a set up fee in addition to the increased price for custom designs and shipping. Unless you have at least 8 orders at once and you don’t have to pay shipping, the denomination of gift cards do not cover your cost…especially if it’s NOT your customer and you don’t even get the commission. So you spend time and effort with no reward other than someone else that you don’t know enjoying your design. Have I completely lost you yet? Sorry, it’s confusing, and imagine that I had to teach myself all of that by researching on my own because no one told me.


So of course, when people wanted the Disney designs during my Launch party, I busted my butt to get it for them. Well, one person’s order didn’t make it to them in time for their Disney trip they ordered it for, so I overnighted them a second set I just happened to have on hand so they would get it in time. They came back from their trip and there was the original order (that arrived after a month). She said she would send it back and reimburse me for the overnight shipping cost, but I told her she didn’t have to…I considered it part of good customer service, but I also considered it a loss of money and an increase in stress.

In the Consultant Kit, you are given a bunch of free sample sheets.


It’s up to you how you want to use them…sample cards, freebies with orders, prizes, etc. I chose to offer a free sample that people could request through my website. I put them in thank you cards with a handwritten note and nicely decorated envelope. Not one person was interested in becoming a Consultant and no one ordered from me. They all just wanted their free sample. I would even take a bet that with all the number of Consultants out there offering the same free sample, that there are tons of people that just go around getting their free samples from all the consultants. I know that sounds cynical, but it happens with everything, and it just resulted in a big waste of time for me.

In the end, I had an ok launch party that resulted in some bonus products and a small commission. Nothing extraordinary though. And when the end of my first Fast Start month came up and I hadn’t met the goal of signing up a new consultant to my team, it wasn’t worth trying to reach the rest of the goals, because they were slightly dependent on reaching the first.


But aside from all the salesy consultant stuff, here is the biggest reason I could’t stand behind Jamberry any longer…

Jamberry stopped working.

The last 4 times I have worn Jamberry, my nails have become so weak and several of them started to break and become so thin that they would bend…under the nail wrap! I would be so good and my nails would grow, only to have the corners start breaking or bending and I’d have to cut it. I don’t know what it is, but I have been hesitant to put a new set on and therefore, ended up biting all of my nails again. I have no explanation for why they started breaking and getting so weak, but they do not do it when I don’t have Jamberry on.


I will end with this…I did not post this to completely bash Jamberry or knock down anyone that is or wants to become a consultant. Other people have been so successful with being a Jamberry Consultant. Perhaps they are braver than me or just don’t care what others think and post all day and night about Jamberry and talk about it 24/7, or simply have lots of friends and family that like them too. Super awesome congrats to them, but that wasn’t me. I’ll just chalk this up to one of the many things I try and decide I don’t like. How else do you know unless you try, right?

As an additional note, I had this post written for several months and just never shared it (that happens a lot with me). I didn’t want to sound negative/cynical or make others feel like I am bashing them if they are Consultants. I just know that when I research to decide whether to start a new venture, I like seeing both sides to the story, not just the rainbows and sparkles side of it. If you do decide to become a Consultant, for any company, my advice would be this: be different. I see so many consultants post the same company-provided photo on their social media channels that if anyone were to scroll through a company hashtag, they would see all the same photo and no one would stand out. Unfortunately, I know most companies, including Jamberry, have super strict rules about what you are allowed to create, but find ways to stand out while staying within the rules.

There, I ended on a positive, helpful note. 😉


Birthday Weekend Wrap-up

Hi guys! How was your weekend? I enjoyed a 3 day weekend, with my birthday on Saturday!

But first, on Friday, Trent and Aubrey got to watch their Nana on the news!



Every Friday, the local news does Firehouse Friday, with a local firefighter demonstrating a recipe that’s amazing and big enough to feed the firefighters during their work shifts. She has been on a few times and does so well! She made Taco Lasagna…yum! Of course, the kids get kinda confused at why Nana is on tv, but they love it!


On Saturday, Nana and Poppa came over to babysit while Brett and I went to the Melting Pot for my birthday. We hadn’t been there since right before Trent was born, since it’s usually a 2+ hour meal not meant for young kids.  The Melting Pot is a fondue restaurant and Brett’s favorite course is the cheese fondue.



Mine is the chocolate fondue. I just love the endless dippers too. It never feels like we’re there as long as we are because you are dipping and eating the entire time. And then you are stuffed.



When we came home, we had this monstrous ice cream cookie cake. I don’t know how I had room after that dinner, but I did.



It was quite cold this weekend (for Florida, but still, yuck), so we had to bundle up before going out to play. Aubrey made it look cute. Stylish winter baby.



Trent rode his balance bike while Aubrey napped. I just love his BB-8 helmet! He’s pretty good at the balance bike, so we got him a bike with training wheels yesterday!



So, in other not shocking news, even though we haven’t been to Disney World in over a month, I can still say that Disney has taken all of our money lately. It’s just so easy with DisneyStore.com and the new Shop Disney Parks App (more on that in another post)!

I just HAD to get the Limited Edition Valentine’s Day Magic Band. I’m a sucker for pink and hearts.

Magic Band


I also got my FIRST Disney Dooney & Bourke purse!!!!! Exclamation!!! IT’s my first “Designer” purse ever. I had been eyeing a few Disney Dooneys for a few months, but just always talked myself out of it. But there was a sale online after Christmas, so I snagged it! Here it is along with my Mickey Wire Bracelet I got from my SIL for Christmas.

Disney Dooney


I also got some Tsum Tsum merchandise…I’m a planner girl, so I had to get this Tsum Tsum Stationery Set and the tumbler because it’s cute.

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On #tsumtsumtuesday, we snagged all the Lion King tsum tsums for Trent. This collecting tsum tsums thing is getting quite costly….but look at how happy he is! He loves those things!

Lion King tsum tsums


Well, back to work today…let’s hope the week goes by easy! :)