USA – Orlando, Florida (II)

In February when I found out that I had passed my first two CPA exams, we immediately went ahead and booked flights back to Orlando for my final two exams for the end of May. It gave me a quick turnaround and the quicker I could get it over and done with, the better! Since I had finished up at my last job, I knew I would have much more time to study for the final two exams that were going to be much more challenging for me, given the topic content.

As it would turn out, fate has a funny way of working out. Only two weeks after finding out that I had passed, my dream job popped up locally and I got it! That made my study schedule much more challenging. Not only was I learning a technical job, but I was coming home at night and studying until I went to bed, and my weekends were taken up with studying.

Nevertheless, Orlando did not disappoint. We flew direct from Frankfurt into Orlando with Lufthansa airlines. I would have to say that the Delta experience was more enjoyable, but I can’t fault Lufthansa, and Nick got his first experience of a 747! The food was excellent, there was always a vegetarian option with each meal service and the staff were very responsive.

The weather was incredible and we were still able to enjoy our time there. I feel like our ‘vacation’ completely revolved around food this time, rather than doing any tourist experiences. I am including a small snapshot here of the food we ate and some restaurant recommendations.

Chuy’s Tex-Mex

We had walked and driven past this restaurant several times and it had seemed to be packed full every time, so we added it to our list to eat at. We ended up eating there twice, it was so delicious! The first time we went I had a plate of tostadas and tacos and Nick went for a huge stuffed burrito. He ended up taking half of it home – the portion sizes were extremely generous.

On our first visit we were there during happy hour, so we couldn’t turn down the offerings there. I had a delicious mango margarita – it was so good! I would definitely recommend heading to Chuy’s, I believe they are at several locations around the USA after originating in Texas.


Yard House

Nick had been to the Yard House in Honolulu when he had been passing through several years ago. They have tanks and tanks of different kinds of beers on tap that are viewable from inside the dining area. It was right next to the Orlando Eye in a great area with a lot of atmosphere.

I have to say, I had one of the best pizzas in my life. It was a Thai chicken pizza and had an incredible amount of flavour – it burst with green curry flavours but also had the freshness of fresh spring onions and cilantro. Yum! It was also at the Yard House that I had my first experience of cheese curds. I wish I hadn’t, because those are a delightful treat that I could easily get addicted to. I expected there to be a date night atmosphere, but it included all ages of diners, including plenty of families.

The area that it is located in is quite busy, but there was a parking building that had free parking, making it really convenient to access.


It was getting late in the day and I was stuck studying in the hotel room. I was starving, as studying seems to always do to you and so we started looking at the flyers in the room for delivery. It was such a beautiful day though that we decided to go and pick it up, and in the end decided to stay and enjoy the beautiful night.

Flippers was delicious! The pizza was incredible and the bread sticks were to die for. The pizzeria was in a really nice part of Orlando, so it was fun just chilling outside with a wine and beer and watching the nice cars and people go past. Yum!

Flying a T-6 Texan

Nick’s birthday was in March and I was wracking my brain trying to figure out what I could get him. I was researching all sorts of things, and then stumbled across an acrobatic flight in Orlando where you can take the controls of a real aircraft and do some stunt moves! I couldn’t think of anything more perfect, even though he’d have to wait until May to receive his birthday gift.

‘Warbird Adventures’ was located in Kissimmee, down near Disneyworld. Nick had a half hour flight and thoroughly enjoyed himself, getting to flip the plane and do all sorts of barrel rolls. While he was up in the sky, I was able to amuse myself in the great little plane museum that they had in their hangar. My favourite plane there was this car plane – hilarious!

Mini golf with alligators

What more can I say. I’m not sure if this is a Florida thing, but all around Orlando were these mini golf venues that boasted ‘live alligators’ and ‘feed the alligators’ as part of the experience of playing mini golf. It seemed kind of cruel, but I couldn’t help myself and on our last day in Orlando we had to have a game.

We opted to feed the alligators, I didn’t want to pick one of the poor souls up, which was also an option. It seemed like they gave us a pack of frankfurter sausages cut up, I guess alligators like processed meat. The actual game of mini golf was fairly challenging and with the sun beaming down, we were pretty much sweating profusely by the end of it.

Sadly, after my last exam there was only two days to truly enjoy our time in Orlando. I chose to spend that shopping up a storm at the outlets and eating at favourite places like The Cheesecake Factory. I definitely think we will be back to Orlando one day, there’s just so much to see and do there!

Oh and yes – I passed my exams. I’m a CPA! This was our celebration in June:

Until next time!

2 thoughts on “USA – Orlando, Florida (II)

  1. Hi EmmaWow you are truly an inspiration. I want to get on a plane now and go to Orlando. And I hate flying  Your descriptive writing style paints a picture for those of us that are stuck in the local scene until retirement. Congrats again on becoming a CPA!  Please say hello to Nick and tell him we think about him a lot. Love and hugs Grandma and Grandpa Rose 

    1. Aww thanks so much, grandma! It is hard to believe that I’ve documented every trip we have done. I’ve wanted to give up at points, but I know it will pay off one day when we have a storybook full of precious memories from our time in Europe! And thank you, it’s an accomplishment I worked extremely hard for and is the culmination of many years of education. Nick and I send our love back to you!

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