Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Day 786: Never Without It

I believe it was sometime last week when I first realized this, but I decided that it was a big enough topic for a blog post in it's own right, and I was certainly correct with that statement! You see, I'm not Catholic, but I do go to a Catholic College, and that means that there's always a lot of talk about Lent and what everyone will be giving up for it. I find that a lot of students on campus give up something other than meat or in addition to meat, and there are some pretty interesting ideas. My roommate Hannah has given up Starbucks, and I know several people who have given up desserts in the caf here on campus. But for me, giving up something for Lent just doesn't work very well. I do, however, get some pretty interesting suggestions on what I should give up.

First off, let's point out that if I give up any more food, I will literally be unhealthy. I'm already on restricted dairy and I can't eat most fruit, so is taking something else away really a good idea? I mean, I'm pretty sure my most popular dish here at school is salad, and that just seems silly to take away in my situation. I don't really eat desserts either, so why would that even be difficult? Doesn't that defeat the point?

One time I had someone suggest that I should give up Once Upon A Time, to which I just responded with a laugh. After all, OUAT comes back right in the middle of Lent (at the beginning, really), and considering I already spend half the year without it (literally, more than half the year), I'm really already participating in a "Non-Once" period that's much longer than Lent. Plus, after waiting 80 some days, I'm not about to give up my premiere.

Another of my roommates is giving up Make-Up, and that's great. In fact, I fully support her idea. Only it's not really ideal for me. Even if I didn't do the make-up on my OUAT Disneybounds, I still have performances that occur during Lent, and I can't just go perform in front of tons of people without doing my makeup...

But by far the most outrageous suggestion for Lent I've gotten was someone who suggested I give up Disney. Now that, that's just downright IMPOSSIBLE. Why? Because I am literally always surrounded by something Disney. If it's just Disney movies or something, sure! I can do that! I do it most of the year anyway! If it's the Disney Parks, you have to realize that I spend 99% of my time NOT at them, so that doesn't even count. But getting rid of all Disney in my life, even aside from the fact that I write a daily blog about Disney, would never happen.

Over the course of my day, I've taken pictures of some of the most common Disney references in my life. This is just photographical evidence, and certainly doesn't include every last bit of Disney that was in my day, but it's a start!

As you can see, just up by my loft where I sleep there's tons of Disney. Stitch sleeps right next to my head, helping to protect my phone (which doubles as my alarm) from both me and from falling off my bed. I also have a Disney calendar that hangs at the end of my loft, for no reason other than it's pretty. Finally, I have pictures that hang along the wall, and you can see my Star Wars pillow hanging out up there too! 


As if my lock screen isn't enough, my Twitter and Facebook are also filled with Disney, and if you want to go off of my phone...check out Megan's! Her phone has Disney all over it too! 

My computer screen almost always has something Disney on it, and I didn't even include my background, which just happens to be Captain Hook (the Disney version...perm and all). Plus, here's where I include Everyday Disney. That picture happened to be taken when I was in the middle of writing Day 782: Thank the Maker! 

Don't even get me started on my desk. But then again, we've covered this already, haven't we? 

Since I couldn't easily take a picture of my lanyard in class, I took one at lunch. At college, we have a lot of little things that we have to keep with us: our ID, keys for our room and for our mailbox, among other things, and in my case, lactade so I can eat. Lanyards are a popular option around here, and you don't wear it around your neck: you carry it. So to make mine easily distinguishable, I picked a Disney lanyard I got at the D23 Expo in 2011!

Even in my "office" I have Disney! Way down in the deep depths of the music building sits the music library, where I work sorting out music and so on and so forth. Since I had a coupon for shutterfly a while back, I created a desk calendar. Although you can't see it, every month has a different Disney picture to go along with it, but since it doesn't officially start until March 2015, I've been keeping it on the cover instead.

Now, I swear I didn't do this on purpose. I picked this shirt completely without this project in mind...but I probably am either wearing something Disney or Disneybounding a solid 60% of the time. Actually, most of my clothes have Disney connections, as a lot of times I buy it for a specific outfit and then it gains a name that has to do with it. For instance, I have "Hook Pants" and a "Belle shirt" and an "Elsa Dress" and so on and so forth. 

Finally, we all know that I love my mugs, and since I have either coffee or tea (or both!) at least once a day, I put them all to good use. Today's mug of choice was my Contemporary Resort mug, which I got in January, although yesterday it was my Hollywood Studios Starbucks Mug and tomorrow it'll probably be my Mickey's Really Swell Diner Travel mug! 

Now, like I said, this is just a taste of the amount of Disney in my day, but as you can see, it would be pretty much impossible to abolish all Disney from my life for Lent. I still haven't figured out if or what I'm giving anything up this year, but one thing's for sure: it won't be Disney. 

Have a magical day!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Day 785: Introductions

After catching up on blog posts from pretty much the entire month of February, it occurs to me that I really didn't have a problem trying to come up with post topics for the days I've had to make up. Whether this is because Disney has just played a key roll in my life lately or because February is the shortest month of the year, I don't really know. However, I do know that this last day I had to make up was kind of difficult to come up with a topic for.

And then I realized that the topic has been staring me in the face for the past half week.

This past Friday, my roommate Ashley and I finally got around to step one of introducing one of our other roommates, Hannah, to Star Wars. Like so many others, she's never seen the entire series (I actually have several friends who have never seen all of Star Wars, and while on some level I feel like this is a crime, I also didn't see it until just a few years ago so....). Of course, we took it upon ourselves to introduce her to the wonderful galaxy that is the series.

It's funny because Ashley and I like totally different episodes when it comes to Star Wars. If you've been around since 2013, you already know that my all time favorite Star Wars film is Episode 5: The Empire Strikes Back. I just can't get past all of the Han Solo in that episode, and now, talking about it, I really want to watch it, but I don't have time for that. I have plenty of other work to get done tonight! Ashley, however, prefers Episodes 6 and 3, so it's going to be interesting as we move forward and we both sit, watching Hannah eagerly to see her reactions to our favorite portions of each film.

I am happy to report, however, that Hannah did indeed enjoy the first episode (aka the fourth episode: A New Hope), and she was super tired while watching it too, so this is a major accomplishment, at least in our books. Plus, introducing Hannah to Star Wars obviously gives us an excuse to sit and watch Star Wars, and with our busy college schedules, that's something we're all definitely willing to do.

Have a magical day!

(Note: This blog post was written on February 25).

Monday, February 23, 2015

Day 784: A Package Has Arrived

If getting Disney mail at home is one of the best things ever, then imagine getting Disney mail at school. You might remember a couple of weeks ago when I bought my Epcot Starbucks You Are Here mug, and if you don't remember it, you can read that post HERE, but there's just one small problem.

That mug is now worth at least $200, although most on ebay are currently going for closer to $300-400. I love my mug, I really do, and I have no intention of selling it, but as Megan said the other day, it's kind of nerve wrecking washing a $300 mug that's not even yours, and trust me, it's just as bad when it IS yours. Therefore, there was only one solution to this problem.

I had to get another mug.

Now, I'm not talking about another Epcot mug (are you crazy?), but lucky for me, there are several other mugs out there, and since I already had one shipped to my house, it wasn't hard to find another to be sent my way. Since I couldn't find a decently priced Magic Kingdom mug, I instead opted for the Hollywood Studios mug, which is just plain adorable, and I'm loving the fact that the Sorcerer's Hat is no where to be found. I guess my plan is working because since buying this new one, I've used it twice and the Epcot mug sits safe and sound on my shelf. I feel bad forcing it to live a life on the shelf, but it's a collectors item now, and considering the rest of my Epcot/Spaceship Earth collection, it's now one of the most important pieces.

But that's not all that came in the mail. On a completely different blog post, which you can read HERE, I lamented about the one thing I forgot to buy while at Disney: Tsum Tsum. But since I have a job now, a real job, I wanted to celebrate in a small fashion. Plus, my new desk will need a little bit of decorating once I have things cleaned off more than they are at the current moment. So I put in an order to the Disney store and by the end of opening all the packages I got from the mail center, my life looked something like this:

Oh yes, it was a very good day for mail indeed. I also realized that I ordered the Tsum Tsum perfectly so they stack by film. Three 101 Dalmatians themed ones on the bottom row, with Cruella in the middle of the two pups, two from Toy Story on top of that, and Donald to round out the tower. I swear I didn't plan it that way, but I also didn't plan falling absolutely in love with these little guys. I don't think my roommates planned that either. 

Have a magical day!

(Note: This blog post was written on February 25).

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Day 783: Happy Oscars!

I do believe that in the past year I've gained a real respect for everything it takes to put together a film, and I'm sure some of you are sick of hearing about the band trip video by now, but as I face the release of that video on Thursday of this week, watching The Oscars is kind of weird for me. We watched as awards go to cinematographers, directors, actors and writers, among many other things, and I have, if only on a small scale, an understanding of what they all do. Every step of the way through my own band trip video, even if it is just that, a video, I thought of it like a film, a real film, one that I made with the best resources I had available to me. Now, "One Band's Dream" might not be quite the same as "Big Hero 6" or "The Theory of Everything," but on some level, to me, as the creator, it was.

I almost wrote a blog post on this last week, but I do find it unfortunate that creators are literally unable to appreciate their work the same way as an audience, and that's why every reaction is so infinitely important. Every recognition we get for our work is a like a little  nod in our direction, because otherwise we may never even know the gravity or brilliance of what we've done.

Think about it this way:

A writer can read their own book, but they'll never get to read it for the first time. They'll never have the experience of dealing with a cliffhanger and wondering for eternity what will happen in the next novel, because they always know.

The creator of a television show will be able to see their vision come to life on screen, complete for the first time with music and visuals, but they too will never experience a hiatus. They know that the ships of the show will survive, or won't survive.

Those who work on film sets get to be a part of the action. They can watch as things all work in sync, as the cast creates a beautiful picture framed by the cinematographer. And they can be proud of the product they create, but they will always find errors and be their own worst critic.

And that's the point. While, as creators, we CAN be extremely proud of the product we put out, at the same time we will never have those first experiences with it. We will always find that one little flaw that's in the film, while others sit and watch in awe at the finished production that we spent hours on end on.

Which is why I really, truly love the Oscars. I don't always have time to watch them, and sometimes they're a bit frustrating, and they certainly aren't without error, but I think creators deserve that recognition. I mean, we're going to continue doing what we do best regardless of whether or not we have a bright shiny little golden man statue in our hands at the end of the night.

But having one doesn't hurt either.

Congrats to everyone who won at the Oscars the other night, especially Walt Disney Animation for their wins with "Feast" and "Big Hero 6."

Have a magical day!

(Note: This blog post was written on February 25).

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Day 782: Thank the Maker

The very first thing I did when I found out about our trip in June was check the dates for the Flower and Garden Festival. I really did enjoy it last year when we went in March and while I was 99.9% sure that it would end before we got there, I tried to hold onto the hope anyway. Of course, the Flower and Garden Festival will conclude before our arrival, but then I thought about something else.


Now, there isn't a ton of information out about this year's weekends celebration, but just the plain fact that I could be meeting Chewbacca come June is pretty darn great. And don't even get me started about the whole "celebrities might be there" thing. You have no idea how excited I am.

It's funny, because most of my college friends don't even know how much I love Star Wars. That phase, in it's full force, was very much at the end of High School, and while there are several reasons as to why I'm probably not quite so outwardly excited about Star Wars these days, it doesn't mean I love it any less.

Which leads me to the following list. Originally I was going to do a list of 5 reasons I'm sad I won't be at the Flower and Garden Festival this year, but why can't we do that AND 5 reasons I'm excited about Star Wars Weekends? We'll alternate between the two and eventually I'll convince myself that this new adventure will be well worth the wait!

I Won't Get to See These Frozen Topiaries: 

Let's be honest, these are just a little creepy, but you have to appreciate the pure art that goes into these things. I know a few years back I had the chance to visit the horticulture department on Disney property and it was absolutely amazing learning how these are grown and to see several in progress, giving you only a small idea of the detail that goes into making them. Plus, they're Frozen, so that obviously counts for something! Thanks to the Disney Parks Blog for the inside image! 


One of the first things I realized when I found out about Star Wars Weekends and my ability to attend one this year was the fact that I'll meet Chewbacca, and yes, I'm pretty sure I'll stand in line to do so. You underestimate how much I want to meet him. I mean, I can't really do Han Solo, so I'd better settle for the next best thing, right? (Don't tell Chewie I said he's second best though...) 

No Maple Bacon Cupcakes for Me: 

One of my favorite parts about the Flower and Garden Festival last year was the food, most of which I just didn't have time to try. But my mom and I had one thing on our list that we wanted to have for sure: the Maple Bacon Pretzel cupcake. It was DELICIOUS, and since having one, I've convinced several people back here in Wisconsin that yes, the words Bacon and Cupcake do indeed go together. 

Darth Vader Cupcakes:

At least, I hope the Darth Vader cupcake will make a return this year. Regardless, I'm sure there will be some special food, and I'm pretty pumped about the fact that I will get to EAT Star Wars themed stuff while I look at all the other Star Wars themed stuff and while it might not be a Maple Bacon cupcake, it IS a cupcake, and if there's two things I love, it's cupcakes and Star putting them together seems natural.

The Wonders of Life Pavilion: 

As a lover of Epcot, there wasn't much I could love more than going into an old, closed pavilion. I do have some faint memories of the things that used to make their home in the Wonders of Life Pavilion, but now I, like many others, wish that it would be open year round, and that instead of letting it just sit there, they would do something productive with the space and create a new attraction. 

Jedi Mickey & Princess Leia Minnie: 

I have the feeling that these Star Wars versions of the characters will give me life. I mean, I don't think I'll HAVE to meet them (not like Chewbacca at least), but it brings me great joy that they're all dressed up for the occasion. Does this mean I'll have to plan in a Star Wars themed outfit for my trip? YOU BETTER BELIEVE IT DOES! 

No Special Jamitors Performance: 

If you know me, you know I LOVE the Jamitors. In fact, I'm pretty sure they're my favorite music group at Walt Disney World. I'm always in complete awe of what they do, and I plan on seeking them out come June (I haven't seen them since March of last year...and I've been on two trips since then). However, during Flower and Garden, they have a special show as Gardeners and literally I loved it more than the usual show. So I'm pretty sad I won't get to see the whole special this year, but I will get to see...

Symphony in the Stars: 

I remember when they started the special fireworks and all kinds of people I knew through Instagram were watching the show, and I was just stuck at home wishing I could see the special Hollywood Studios fireworks too. Well I don't have to wish anymore because I'm going to see them this year and I couldn't be more excited about that! 

This Captain Hook: 

We all know I love Captain a lot. Seeing him in flower form was pretty much the highlight of the festival for me, aside from that cupcake. So along with the rest of the regular displays, I'm pretty bummed that I won't get to see this scoundrel again this year. Even more so, I'm sad that I went a year after they did the special one that was alive. Gosh I would have loved to see that. 

Star Wars Weekends Merch: 

Two years ago I remember writing an entire post on the merch they had at the Star Wars weekends that year. You can read that post HERE. It's funny because, in the end, I did get some of the merch from that Star Wars Weekend: the Speeder Bike Mickey and the Ewok Chip and Dale, as by the time my July trip rolled around, they had some merch left over. What will be available this year? Who knows! 

Now, there are tons of other reasons I'm excited for Star Wars Weekends, but since we don't know everything that will be going on yet, it's more of a "We'll talk about it when we know about it" kind of thing. What does that mean? MORE STAR WARS! Gosh, I've missed the series. There's another reason the series will make more regular appearances on Everyday Disney again though too, but that's a blog post for another time.

Have a magical day!

(Note: This blog post was written on February 25).

Friday, February 20, 2015

Day 781: Wash All The Dishes

Another pretty short blog post for you today, but it won't be over without references to college, The Chinese New Year and, of course, Disney!

The other night, we were faced with a common problem in my dorm room: dishes. You see, there are four of us living in this one little dorm room, and in this little dorm room we drink A LOT of coffee and tea, not to mention the ridiculous amounts of oatmeal and other food we tend to eat. In the end, this accumulates to a surplus of dishes:

And when there's as many dishes as we have here (and that's actually not even all of them), you really need some serious music to go along with your dishwashing escapades. I try to mix up my music every so often, listening, as you know, to everything from Pearl Jam to Classical Music to Disney Parks to Christina Perri to Once Upon A Time to who knows what else, so I did what every other crazy music person like me would do: I asked someone else what I should listen to. My roommate Hannah helped me instantly on this very important decision, recommending the Mulan soundtrack, and boy was that a good choice.

I mean, when "I'll Make a Man Out Of You" comes on, you just have to get your work done while simultaneously pretending to fight the Huns. Needless to say, the dishes were done pretty quickly, and it wasn't until later that I realized that Mulan happened to be the absolute perfect choice when it came to a soundtrack for the day. Why? Because February 20 happened to be the beginning of the Chinese New Year!

So as we begin another lunar year, I encourage you all to do your dishes, preferably before it gets to the state that our bathroom sink was in when I finally got around to it last week. But, in the chances that you are as procrastination-filled as my roommates and I, I do suggest the Mulan soundtrack for your next date with the soap and sponge.

Have a magical day!

(Note: This blog post was written on February 24).

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Day 780: We're Going Where?

Just a note...if you're my Dad or my brother, you'd better stop reading right now because this blog post contains spoilers for you and I'm not supposed to tell you...but let's be honest, I might not be able to let you know what's going on, but that won't keep me from alerting the entirety of the internet. After all, my blog is kind of behind here. Twitter found out last week!

Found out what exactly? Well, that's a very good question, and it requires a little bit of a story.

My family has this tendency to plan out several trips at a time. When I was a kid, it was basically one trip per year, generally around 9-10 days, and it worked because my school schedule really didn't matter. But with me in college and my brother in high school, our schedules tend to conflict, and with the band trip in there and everything else, it's led to a continuation of randomly scheduled Disney trips. Of course, we already knew about our Disneyland trip coming up in August, and I'm SUPER excited about it, but that doesn't mean I wasn't a bit bummed about the fact that I had no idea when my next trip home was.

Keyword: had.

Last week, my mom called me after I got out of class. Or I called her, or something like that. Regardless, I was pretty confused about why in the world my mom was calling me at 11 in the morning, immediately after one of my classes. Turns out she wanted to ask me if I would support an extra trip to Disney in June to celebrate my parents' 25th Wedding Anniversary.

Support a trip to WDW in June? WOULD I!?!

So within a few minutes we had plotted and schemed and yet another trip was planned. Of course, I took it to social media instantly, but Jonny and Dad aren't going to find out until Easter. I'll be honest: keeping this one a secret has been pretty hard so far. I mean, I almost slipped up at least 5 times the other night while looking at slides. Granted, that might have something to do with the fact that we were literally staring at Disney World, the exact place that we are going (albeit almost 30 years ago to the day) and I'd spent quite a bit of time a few days previous making a list of some of the things I want to do when we're down there, but still. Secrets are hard. I'm starting to understand the frustrations of Snow White.

What exactly does this mean? Well, it means that 2015 won't have just two Disney trips anymore, but rather THREE, two to WDW and one to Disneyland. It also means that I'll head to both coasts in one summer, therefore repeating the last (and only) time I've gone to Disneyland, which was in 2011. That summer I ended up traveling to WDW in June for the FBLA Convention and Disneyland in August, so it's almost like history repeating itself...minus the whole FBLA Convention thing (although I would totally love to do that again!)

I guess I need to start a new countdown...

Have a magical day!

(Note: This blog post was written on February 24).