Monsters, Inc. Company Store

I’ve never liked shopping. In fact, I hate it. Shopping, for me, is knowing what I want beforehand and going out to get it. It’s a really short process and I like it. It limits time wasting and I’m able to spend that time on other important stuff like taking a shower or napping. However, there are exceptions to this hatred. There are some places that are  able to turn my hatred into an exciting adventure. These places are able to hypnotize me into thinking, “It’s ok to splurge once in a while. We don’t get to do this so often. We can always make that money back.” It’s diabolical. These few places are able to turn me into something that I’m not. Factory Outlet Malls and Disney Theme Parks turn me into Lindsay Lohan.

Monster's Inc. Company Store

Monsters, Inc. Company Store

Monsters, Inc. Company Store is one of the stores that we frequent a lot when visiting Tokyo Disney. It seems to have a magnetic pull on my family. We love the movies and Little Mahina loves the characters. The theming of the store is brilliant. The Imagineers did an amazing job with the level of detail in this store. You can find a lot of “Easter eggs” from the movies here. If you are a fan of Monsters Inc, this store is a must visit.

Inside the Monsters, Inc. Store

Inside the Monsters, Inc. Store

Rules to follow when working at Monsters, Inc.

Dress code at Monsters, Inc

Sully's trophy case.

Sully’s trophy case

Notice Board.

Notice Board

The products in this store are super cool. Some of the products in this store would give the underwear sold at Tokyo Disney Resort a run for their money. We have spent quite a bit of coin in this store. A lot of money has been transferred from my wallet to Mike & Sully’s. I would say that Mike could have taken Celia to Harryhausen’s at least 3 times with the money I’ve spent there. Harryhausen’s! That’s a lot of money folks. Oh no. Am I a shopaholic?! Do I have self discipline issues?! Arrghhhh. I can’t help myself when I’m in Disney! I’m losing it. What’s happening to me?! Get a hold of yourself, Hayatt!!! Take deep breaths and say this aloud 3 times, “It’s ok to splurge once in a while. We don’t get to do this so often. We can always make that money back.”

Sully Tissue Box cover 3,200yen

Sully Tissue Box cover: 3,200yen

Mugs: 1,300yen Chopsticks: 600yen Fork and Spoon set: 1,300yen

Mug: 1,300yen
Chopsticks: 600yen
Fork and Spoon set: 1,300yen

Black T-shirt: 2,600yen White T-shirt: 2,900yen

Black T-shirt: 2,600yen
White T-shirt: 2,900yen

Monsters, Inc. Company Store is a must visit for anybody who is a fan of the movies. Apart from having loads of great merchandise, the store itself, tells a story. The level of detail incorporated into this store is amazing. Even if you are not looking to buy anything, you should just visit the store and read the notice board. My wife and I shared a few laughs together, reading that. However, if you do purchase something here, I am sure that you will not regret it. Just remember this phrases, “It’s ok to splurge once in a while. We don’t get to do this so often. We can always make that money back.”

 

Underwear at Tokyo Disney Resort

Tokyo Disney Resort’s underwear. I love it. Their one of my favorite products in the entire resort. In fact, I own quite a few pairs of them, myself. I would model them for you, but my “amazing” physique might be too much for you to take. Here’s a mental picture. My friends used to call me E.T because I have a big head and a beer belly. There you go. Now, let your imagination run wild.

A huge selection of underwear

A wide selection of underwear

Now, that’s a lot of underwear on display. I remember coming to Tokyo Disney Resort once with my friends many years ago and they had only a few pairs. Now, they have multiplied, much like Kanye West’s ego. Their price range from 1,000 yen to 2,000 yen. They’re pretty expensive if you factor in the fact that not many people will actually get to see you in them. However, the confidence you will get when you put them on is unparalleled. Whenever I don a pair, I always feel like David Hasselhoff. It’s an amazing feeling. You should “Hoff” it up too. Below are some of my favorite designs.

Mickey underwear

Mickey underwear 1,050 yen

The Wicked Witch underwear

The Wicked Witch underwear 1,400 yen

Ursula underwear 1,400yen

Ursula underwear 1,400 yen

Mr Potatohead underwear

Toy Story underwear 1,800 yen

Sully underwear

Monsters Inc underwear 1,800

Tokyo Disney Resort’s underwear can be found in some shops in the parks and Bon Voyage. From my visits to the parks, I’ve noticed that the biggest selection is in Grand Emporium, in Tokyo Disneyland and Emporio, in Tokyo Disneysea. In my opinion, this is a must get souvenir for everyone visiting the resort. Two words. David Hasselhoff. How can you pass that up?

Strawberry Popcorn

When I think of strawberries, I think of the Beatles. I don’t know why. That’s just the way my mind works. Strawberry is probably one of my favorite fruit. Pineapple, Fuji Apple and Strawberry would be in my list of top 3 favorite fruits. Tokyo Disney Resort, can you hear me?!! I’ve got a few ideas on new popcorn flavors. I want a cut if you choose to accept my super creative ideas of Pineapple and Fuji Apple popcorn flavors. 10% of total sales should be enough to wet my beak.

Strawberry Popcorn Cart

Strawberry Popcorn Cart

Naturally, with strawberry being one of my favorite fruit, I was excited to try it. It smelled really good too. Sorta like cotton candy. Then, I grabbed one popcorn and slowly put it into my mouth. I felt like one of those models in a hair commercial. You know how they put on the shampoo, rinse it off and move their head from side to side to dry out their hair, all in slow motion? Sounds sexy, doesn’t it? That was the effect I was going for. After that, I started chewing and waited for the popcorn to blow my mind. Hold up!!! Something’s wrong here. It didn’t blow my mind!!! Wait, let me try it one more time. This time a handful. Hmmmm, still not mind blowing. What’s going on here!!!??

Strawberry Popcorn

Strawberry Popcorn

I was really disappointed by this. Almost to a point of depression. I felt empty. It was almost as painful as the time when Guns N’ Roses broke up. I’m distraught to say that Strawberry Popcorn is not on my list of top 3 popcorn flavors at Tokyo Disney Resort. It would have been cool if it was in my top 3 list, so that I could align it with my top 3 fruits. That way, I could have told the world that I LOVE STRAWBERRY ANYTHING!!!

Mahina chomping down Strawberry Popcorn

Mahina chomping down Strawberry Popcorn

So, I did what any awesome parent would do. I passed my disappointment on to my child. Little Mahina chomped it down like a champion. Overall, Strawberry Popcorn was disappointing. It definitely did better than Soda Popcorn, but then again, any flavor of popcorn would have done better than Soda Popcorn. Little Mahina might have given this a higher score, but for me, Strawberry Popcorn did not do enough to get placed on the medals podium.

KM gives Strawberry Popcorn a 4/10.

 

Nana’s Green Tea in Ikspiari

This is Wife-chan and this is my first post. I hope that I can help every parent who wants to visit Tokyo Disney Resort. I would like to introduce a relaxing cafe in Ikspiari to you. There are many big name coffee shops like Starbucks Cafe, Tully’s Cafe and Honolulu Cafe around Tokyo. Nana’s Green Tea is one of my favorite cafes. You can enjoy many different kinds of authentic Japanese tea here. It also serves up light meals, sweets and has a cozy kids play area.

Nana's Green Tea

Nana’s Green Tea

If you wanna try some traditional Japanese tea, you can go for Maccha or Houjicha. For those with sweet tongues, like my husband, a glass of Azuki (Red Bean) drink will do the trick while those who prefer something that’s not so sweet, like me, a glass of Maccha Latte will help you to relax. Nana’s Green Tea opens a little earlier than a lot of other eating establishments in Ikspiari. It opens at 10am while a lot of other places open at 11am.

Nana's Green Tea Drink Menu

Nana’s Green Tea Drink Menu

Nana's Green Tea Food Menu

Nana’s Green Tea Food Menu

Nana's Green Tea Seating

Nana’s Green Tea Seating

I like Nana’s Green Tea a lot because I can enjoy my drink and relax while Little Mahina enjoys the play area. It gives me a little bit of time to unwind from a tiring, but fulfilling day spent with my family at Tokyo Disney Resort.

Nana's Kids' Space

Nana’s Kids Space

Little Mahina Enjoying the Kids Space

Little Mahina enjoying the Kids Space

Little Mahina posing for a picture

Little Mahina posing for a picture

Nana’s Green Tea is an excellent cafe. Children have a place to play while their parents can sit back and relax with a tasty drink. If you are rushed for time, Nana’s Green Tea also provides take out service. You can grab a delicious drink and enjoy your walk to one of the parks. I hope that you found my first blog post useful. I can’t wait to share more parenting tips with you in the future.

 

 

Mahina with her Disney friends in Aulani

There were many things that Little Mahina enjoyed when we traveled to Aulani in February of 2014. This resort is heaven for everyone in the family. She loved the character breakfast at Makahiki, The Keiki Cove Splash Zone, her first time on a beach, but most of all, she loved calling the Disney Characters her neighbors.

Little Mahina with Donald

Getting a kiss from Donald

Hanging with Chip & Dale

Hanging with Chip & Dale

Two ladies chillin by the pond

Two ladies chilling by the pond

Taking a walk with Stitch

Taking a walk with Stitch

Dreaming of Goofy

Dreaming of Goofy

Altogether, she got to meet Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy, Chip & Dale and Stitch. Aulani would release a schedule everyday of where and when to meet the characters. Meeting the characters in Aulani felt a little different from meeting them in the parks. There was never a long line when we visited. The characters spent more time with us and interacted more. There was none of that pose for a picture and you’re off kinda thing.

Little Mahina would go for a Character Meet & Greet at least twice a day. There were a few times when she was last in line and the characters would hold her hand and take a little walk with her till they bid farewell to one another. That did it for her. She would smile from ear to ear when that happened.

Last Meet & Greet of our trip. Little Mahina wanted to say goodbye

Last Meet & Greet of our trip. Little Mahina wanted to say goodbye

Telling Mickey that she will be back

Telling Mickey that she will be back

Walking hand in hand with Mickey and Minnie

Walking hand in hand with Mickey and Minnie

See you again Aulani. We will be back soon

See you again Aulani. We will be back soon

Everyday was an adventure for Little Mahina. She would wake up in the morning and say, “Shoes.” Then she would grab our shoes and bring them to us. Next, she would call out a Disney Character’s name and say, “Go out.” I would wake up to that everyday in Aulani and I loved every moment of it. I will never forget that. Thank you Little Mahina for giving me such a precious memory. You are the fuel to Daddy’s dreams.

To read about Mahina’s adventure at Makahiki, Aulani, click here

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Aulani, Beach: Little Mahina’s first time on the beach

The beach. I love the beach. When I was living in Singapore, I would visit the beach at least once a month and when I was living in Phuket, Thailand, I visited the beach on a daily basis. Ahhhhhh, those were the days, I had an apartment within walking distance to Patong Beach. It was beautiful. Paradise.

Wife-chan loves the beach too. She used to surf on a regular basis. Our dream is to one day own a beach side villa. The beach is where we feel the most relaxed and inspired. Naturally, we were super excited to introduce this beautiful aspect of nature to Little Mahina.

Paradise

Paradise

It took a while for Mahina to get used to the texture of sand. At first, she was a little afraid and held on to Wife-chan, my better half, real tight. Naho took off Little Mahina’s shoes and stood her up on the beach. After walking around in the sand for a bit, she got used to it. Then, we sat down, tried building little sandcastles and shortly after, it was time for Mahina to get a feel of the sea.

Showing Little Mahina one of the many activities that can be done on the beach

Showing Little Mahina one of the many activities that can be done on the beach

Mahina planting her feet into seawater for the first time

Mahina planting her feet into seawater for the first time

Operation introduce Mahina to the wonders of the beach was a success. During our trip, we returned to the beach once more. This time, Mahina had no fear in her at all. She was running around the beach, playing with the sand and was not afraid to enter the water. She had been initiated into the family’s “Love for the beach” house and Aulani was the perfect setting for this initiation.

Operation "Introduce Mahina to the beach" a success

Operation “Introduce Mahina to the beach” a success

Setting for Little Mahina's initiation

Setting for Little Mahina’s initiation

KM has more on Aulani. To read about Mahina’s visit to the Keiki Cove Splash Zone, click here.

Keiki Cove Splash Zone: Mahina’s first visit to a pool

Before leaving for Hawaii, we bought Little Mahina her swimsuit. Prior to this trip, Mahina (18 months old at that time), had never been to the beach or even a pool. I was really excited about this. I’ve drawn up pictures in my head of my family and I heading to the water slides and enjoying great family time as we cruised down the lazy river. Mahina and I sharing a slide, laughing like a pack of hyenas, enjoying some father and daughter time.

We got Mahina her life vest. Put it on for her and wanted to get her acquainted to the wonders of a pool by taking her to the Munehune Bridge first. Shallow waters, fun little bridge, water splashing everywhere. I was super excited. My daughter was gonna run around and make so many friends. She’s gonna be so fun loving that all the kids will make her their leader and follow her around. Thoughts of the “Following the leader” scene in Peter Pan sprang to mind. GO MAHINA!!! Enjoy yourself. Be free!!!

Chillin by Munehune Bridge

Chillin by Munehune Bridge

See that picture above? That lasted for about 15 minutes. Mahina wouldn’t budge. She would just sit there and watch. There goes all my plans.

After we sat there for a bit, my wife and I decided to take her to the Keiki Cove Splash Zone. Seeing that the kids there are more of her age, we were thinking that she would be able to be herself there.

Mahina and her new friends

Mahina and her new friends

Mahina communicating with another child

Mahina communicating with another child

Being free

Being free

Getting wet at the Keiki Splash Zone

Getting wet at the Keiki Cove Splash Zone

Mahina loved the Keiki Cove Splash Zone. Did she try the other pool areas for the remainder of our trip? No. It was all Keiki Cove from that moment on.

A wise man once told me, “Hayatt, you got to have a goal and you have to be hungry. If you are hungry enough, that goal will be realized.” Did I get to go on the slides? No. Did I get to cruise the lazy river with my family? No.

Did I hit my goal of spending quality time with my daughter at the pool? You bet I did.  Seeing my daughter run around, making friends and being free got me all warm and fuzzy inside. For now, the slides and the lazy river will have to wait. I’m pretty sure that we will conquer those the next time we head over to Aulani.

 

Can`t get enough of Aulani? To read about Character Breakfast in Makahiki, click here.