That's A Wrap on the Osbourne Lights

While I've been in Disney World for the holidays for two years now, I've never seen the Dancing Lights that the Osbourne Family sponsors in Hollywood Studios. I meant to go last year, but then I got sick around the time I was planning on going, so I never made it. Well, I was telling this story to one of my coworkers and she decided it was high time I saw the Dancing Lights. 

One day after I got off of work early-ish, she and I took off and went to Hollywood Studios. We were only there for about two hours, but it was the most fun two hours I think I've had in quite some time. We walked around staring at all the holiday decorations and the holiday windows on their main streets. We walked in and out of the stores, just staring at the Christmas products deciding what we would buy if we were rich. We stopped at their Starbucks at Trolley Car Cafe, because even though we work for Starbucks we still can't get enough. It was cool seeing how their setup differed from ours, and how new some of their machines looked, since they are a newer store. 

As it was getting dark, we started meandering over toward the streets of America to get a look at the lights. Now, I've seen them in daytime, so I know how intricately they're laid out. As we were walking that way the lights flickered on, and when I say flickered I mean they turned on so brightly that we saw it happen from the opposite side, which made us even more excited for what was to come. We kept creeping closer and closer and Christie kept telling me how awesome and amazing they were and that I was going to cry (I didn't -- but almost did). 

We kept getting little sneak peeks in tiny openings here and there, which made me even more excited. We finally turned the corner and I couldn't believe my eyes. It was so amazing and breathtaking. The Christmas music was blaring and the lights were dancing along with the song. The lights only dance along every other song, so it's not too overwhelming. We would take a few steps and then stop because I couldn't believe my eyes. They have hidden mickeys (literally over 100), hidden characters, and cute little setups along the way. 

It would be one place that I wouldn't mind working because seeing the lights night after night wouldn't ever get old. They're so well timed to the music, and so intricate that it's almost unbelievable. We stayed for about six or seven songs and then started to make our way out. However we came across a little shop on the left that smelt wonderful so we had to pop in. I can't think of the name off the top of my head, but I think it's called the writer's studio or something along those lines. They had free little hot chocolates with whipped cream on top (which were delicious) and was a little break from the hectic scene that was the Dancing Lights. 

After we got some hot chocolate the song "What's This" from Nightmare Before Christmas was playing so I HAD to go back to the lights to see it because it's Christian's favorite song from that movie so I took a little video to send to him. Since we were back in the lights, Christie told me we had to walk back toward the other side because there was a little area in the back that is quiet/incredibly beautiful, so off we went. She was right, and it was almost like a little sanctuary in the back. 

Apparently as it gets later in the night, the streets get more and more thinned out so it's not as hectic. I would love to go back and look at them at least one more time before they disappear for good. While I'm sad that they won't be there after this year, I'm excited to see what happens with the park in the coming years. 
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Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Sea of Monsters

Since I had bought the box set for the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, I was incredibly eager to pick up the second book as soon as I had finished the first one. These books are so well written, it's easy to get through them. If you haven't picked up the series, I would definitely suggest doing so. I wrote about the first book in a previous blog post, so if you haven't seen that I would definitely go check it out. 

In the second book, we meet back up with Percy Jackson and his friends from the first book, Grover and Annabeth. However this time, we meet up with another very important character, Tyson. Tyson is a boy at Percy's school, who is a little different than usual. Percy doesn't really think anything of it, and tries to treat him like normal (a good lesson for everyone), and tries to keep the bullies from picking on him. Percy and Tyson form an unusual friendship that spans time. After Annabeth saves Percy and Tyson from a gang of monsters who try to attack them at school, they all head to Camp Half-Blood. That's when things start to get even weirder. 

At this time, the camp is under attack from monsters because someone poisoned the tree that guarded the camp, who is actually one of Zeus' daughters (Thalia). Thalia was turned into a tree to save her life by her father when she was trying to make it to camp. Chiron is blamed for actually poisoning the tree, so he is fired from camp and not there when they make it back to camp. To save Thalia, and Grover, we learn that the heroes must go on a quest to find the golden fleece. This fleece is located in the Sea of Monsters with a Cyclops. 

However the leaders of the camp do not actually give the quest to Percy and his friends, they give it to Clarisse, a daughter of Ares. With a little help from Hermes, Percy decides to go on the quest anyways, which leads him to the Sea of Monsters. What happens next? I guess you'll have to read the book to find out. 

In this book, we see Percy begin to show a little more growth. While he is "growing up" during these books, it's also very hard to imagine what is going on at this time because he is only about 13/14 years old. It's odd for me to think of someone that young going on these quests, but in this world that's "normal." This book greatly differed from the first one, though still very enticing, because we meet different characters, and old characters reappear as well. The tasks that Percy and his friends must endure are getting more and more challenging as the series goes on.

Though I've said it a million times already, these books are absolutely fantastic, for anyone of any age. They're an easy read, and absolutely entertaining the whole way through. I'll be passing the book series on to my mom after I finish reading them, and after talking with her about what the books are about she's very excited too. 
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I'll Be Home for Thanksgiving

I wouldn't go out on a limb and say that Thanksgiving was my favorite holiday by any means. Is it one of my favorites? Yes. Is it my absolute favorite? No. But this year, all that may be changing because this year I get to go home for Thanksgiving. 

I kind of last minute decided it was time for a short visit home about two weeks before Thanksgiving. I got my schedule for the week and saw that I had two days off. The only thing that I needed to make my dream a reality was to get Friday off as well. As soon as I woke up in the morning, I posted on our Facebook page of shift trade/give away that I was trying to give away a super short morning shift on that Friday and would love someone to take it, if they could. Not even five minutes later a girl had commented that she could take my shift. I was elated. 

After I put the shift trade in, the next thing to do was tell my parents. My mom didn't think it was a good idea, because I'd be exhausted from traveling so much to actually enjoy my time there. However my dad saw things a little differently. He was excited I was coming home but not so excited that I was going to drive. It's only a 10-12 hour (max) drive home so I don't think it's that bad. My dad doesn't quite see it like that though -- he's more worried about the crazy drivers and my safety. So what does he do? He told me he'd buy me a plane ticket home if I could find a cheap one. 

Somehow, god only knows, I managed to find a super cheap flight home and my dad told me to book it on the spot. It's nearly impossible to find flights that go from Orlando --> New Orleans so to find one within the price range I was looking for, I was ecstatic. Plus it's on Southwest which means that I am able to bring bags there/home with me, which means that I can actually bring stuff that I forgot at home back to my apartment with me. 

I'm so happy to see my family again, and spend a little bit of time with them. The holidays are always stressful, but I'm glad that going home will make them a little bit easier. 
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Making Our Apartment a Home

Moving out has been an interesting thing to say the least. The past few times when I've moved out, I've either moved into an apartment that I was only going to be in for my duration of the college program, or I was in a sorority house, or a house that I was only in for a year during school. I've never really had to buy my own things for my own house/apartment. However, this time I've had to. 

I've come to realize how much stuff my parents have that I don't have/need to get, and what makes a house a home. My parent's kitchen's are awesome. They're stocked full of things that you need for cooking obscure recipes and for cooking family recipes. The first few nights we were here, we didn't have ANYTHING at all really, and it was so difficult. Now when I'm in the kitchen and I go to reach for something that I don't have (which happens more often than not) I write down what I need. If I go to reach for it more than once, or think about it more than once, I put a tally down next to it. 

Now, when I go shopping for decorations/things like that I mainly go to HomeGoods because not only is it cheap but they've got some pretty awesome stuff for decorating/the home. The only bad thing about the store is sometimes when you find something absolutely perfect, they may not have multiples of it because they only have what's on the floor (for the most part). So sometimes, you may not be getting a full set of whatever it is that you wanted. 

For me, one of the things that I really wanted after our ant problem was little containers to sit on the counter that hold sugar and flour. My mom and dad both have containers at home that hold our flour and our sugar, which is awesome but I wanted something a little more decorative that could just sit on the counter so I didn't have to pull out the big tub every time I wanted something. Now this may change, but for right now it works. 

I found what I wanted right away, but could only find one of the jars. It was perfect -- it was white with a brown cork top that fit right in and had a little fleur-de-lis on it. I walked around for what felt like forever looking for a duplicate and couldn't find it so I settled for three other ones, with a matching oil and vinegar set as well. The jars, a kitchen utensil holder, and a spoon to put on the stove to set down your cooking spoon while you're cooking only set me back about $40. Which for me, was practically perfect. I'm very much in the mind set that you don't have to have a lot of things all at once, but more so create the perfect collection one week (or so) at a time. 
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Living in Disney World

Living and working in Disney World is one of the most blissful and the most stressful things I think I've ever done. Now, don't get me wrong I don't actually live in Disney World, but I live close enough that I don't have to stress about getting to work on time (for the most part). It's one of the most magical places, that's for sure, and working here reminds me on a daily basis how blessed I am to be doing something that I like in a place that I love. 

Don't get me wrong, there are days that are hard, and there are days that are stressful, but the good days most definitely make up for the bad days. To see a little boy or girl get excited about something in our store, or even an adult to be thankful for the coffee that will help them get through the long day that is inevitably ahead, it's very humbling at all times. Every time that I see a family come in with a Make A Wish badge on, it breaks my heart just a little bit. And every time I see a family come in with a family reunion, or first visit button it makes me smile just a little bit harder. I work for Disney, but in a Starbucks, so the questions that I get on a daily basis can range anywhere from a typical Disney question to a Starbucks question that I've never heard before in my entire life. 

One of the things that I love most about working is that when I'm not working, I can go into the parks and just relax. I can go in for a few hours here, and a few hours there and really become familiar with the parks and the nooks and crannies that each park has. There have been days where I've just sat in the Hub of the Magic Kingdom and watched as the families go by, or on a bench in Italy and just watch everyone hustle around Epcot trying to make the most of Food and Wine as it goes by. Just one look at my instagram, you can tell that I really do love this place and the people that I've met because of it. 

I somehow wound up here after college, trying to delay working for the 'real world.' I finished my first College Program and headed off to Disneyland Resort to try my hand working out there. I came straight back (to be closer to family) after I finished my program out there, and wouldn't change it for anything in the entire world. If you ever have an opportunity to work for this company, even if it's just for an internship, I say do it. Because you learn more about yourself in two weeks here than you do in months/years anywhere else. 
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When Life Takes the Reigns

Sometimes, breakfast looks like the first picture and then life takes the reigns and dinner looks like the last picture. Some days I work six hours, some I work fourteen. It just depends on if I pick up another shift or if I feel like getting out at my normal time. If the park is busy and we're slammed, I'm extending/extended. Sometimes I forget to eat, and sometimes I forget to cook. And let's be honest here, sometimes I'm just too lazy or tired to cook after a long day at work. That's not a bad thing, necessarily. 

I love working for the company that I work for. I love the people I work with, they make my days even brighter than anyone else. I love challenging myself to be a better worker, and sometimes it means you have your days where cooking just isn't happening. I like to call the second picture above my 'adult lunchable.' Because it's the same thing I would eat when I was younger and my mom didn't have time to cook or didn't feel like it, which happened rarely (and was a treat!). Sometimes people get caught up in only posting the beautiful pictures of their food on social media, but sometimes I like to keep it real. 

Tomorrow (as I'm writing this, not actually when it's posted), I've got a 14-hour shift, and I can't sleep. The perfect combination if you ask me. The last time that I worked that much in one day, I woke up the next morning with the flu and my roommate was basically scared for my life. I woke up crying and couldn't move, and she was staring at me as if I was dead. So here's to eating better, and not always eating adult lunchables. I've got my two meals prepared (lunch and dinner) and already in my lunchbox. I'm already planning on eating a big breakfast, and I'm taking Advil and emergen-c when I wake up. It's going to be a good day, and I'm taking the reigns back.

Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightening Thief // A Book Review

Reading has always been a part of my life. As long as I can remember, I've always had a book in my hand. My mom and I both subscribe to the theory that you shouldn't have genres/boundaries in writing. You should read whatever you want to read, whether it technically be YA, Middle Grade, or Adult novels. Read what you like, and like what you read. There are so many amazing book series out there that you should give every one of them a try. 

I've heard about the Percy Jackson books time and time again, and finally I decided to pick them up. Why not? They sounded fun, like an interesting read, and like something I could get through relatively quickly. Now, I generally read really quickly to begin with but I felt like with this series I flew through it. I'm not going to review the series as a whole (yet), rather I'm going to do it book by book first. 

I bought the Percy Jackson and the Olympians box set through Amazon for about $20 total. For five books total, that didn't really seem like a bad deal to me. This series was absolutely amazing and I couldn't be happier that I picked it up. This book is about a young boy named Percy Jackson, who is destined to be a hero. The book starts out with Percy narrating, and telling you his story. He is perceived as a troubled young boy who can't pay attention in school and is continuously kicked out of school after school. He finds out why this tends to happen to him, and much, much more. He goes to Camp Half-Blood, where young heroes train for the summer, and meets his future best friend.Percy and his best friends Annabeth and Grover head out on a quest to retrieve Zeus' lightening bolt which was stolen during the winter solstice. Along the way, you meet a slew of characters who you get to know, some bad and some good. It takes you all through out Manhattan, and onto a journey to the Gods.  

One of my favorite things about this book is the fact that it is actually written to children with learning disabilities. I have really bad dyslexia (more so with numbers than reading/words, but still), so it was cool to see a book that has a main character with ADHD and dyslexia. Another amazing aspect of the book was just how much Greek history you got with the book. I studied Greek Mythology (and a lot of other mythologies) in college, and it was cool to recall myths to try and guess who a character was before they told you. However, the myths were very similar but there is some updating done to the stories as well, especially in later books. 

This is a book that I would give 5/5 stars to, and that I would recommend to almost anyone. If you enjoy reading books with a backstory to the story, and with a lot of adventure I would definitely pick this book up. Its a very quick read and it's a very entertaining read as well. If you have someone who is just getting started reading, I would give them these books as a present because they easily suck you into the world of Percy Jackson and leave you wanting more.
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Starting Our Own Traditions

In my family, traditions are very important. There are just certain things you do (and don't do) every year that always seem to stay in place. One of these traditions is carving pumpkins for Halloween. I don't know if we've done them EVERY single year, but for as long as I can remember we've carved pumpkins. It's funny because I was talking to my mom on the phone the other day, and she was saying how my step-dad was thinking of throwing away our hand made pumpkin carving tools because 'nobody carves pumpkins with them' Oh boy was he wrong. Ironically, later that night my sister stopped by my moms house to borrow them to carve pumpkins with her boyfriend. 

Since I moved out, I've been struggling to find a balance between making my own traditions and preserving the traditions that I grew up with. In all honesty, it's more of me keeping our old traditions while also creating some of my own. It's hard being away from home and my family, especially during the holiday times, but I'm making it work. Since starting to date Christian, we've talked about traditions that we want to keep from both of our families, and traditions we think we should add on to the already long list. 

Since Christian and I don't really get to spend a ton of time together, living on opposite sides of the country and all, we decided to make the holidays we do get to spend together extra special. So, this Halloween we came up with a list of things we want to do for Halloween every year: carve pumpkins while watching Halloween movies (not scary ones), bake the pumpkin seeds, and bake the sugar cookies from the store that have the Halloween symbols on them. These are basically everything I used to my family, just now carrying it on with him. 

We probably should have prepared a little bit better, but we didn't. I had bought the pumpkins before he landed in Orlando, but we didn't think about carving them or what we wanted to carve into them until late at night. So instead of doing intricate carvings of characters or words, we decided to go with the traditional jack-o-lanterns this year. They turned out pretty well, but I think that next year we'll hopefully plan a little bit better. 
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Interesting Finds in October's Birchbox

I have a love/hate relationship with Birchbox. I do think that it's a really great tool to find new products and to test out products you wouldn't normally try. However, a lot of the times the products don't really work for me. This is partially because my skin is super sensitive and breaks out/has bad reactions to a lot of products, and partially because if it is something that works, 9/10 I can't afford it. 

This month, I was very impressed with Birchbox's packaging (though this isn't surprising because they've stepped up their game recently). The pink box this month looked like a bathtub after you popped a LUSH bath bomb in it, and I loved it. Normally I would save boxes, but living in the apartment I'm currently in, I don't have any space whatsoever. 

For me this month, the products were a bit of a mix of things I would actually love and use and things that just didn't work for me. I absolutely adored the Macadamia Professional Style Extend Dry Shampoo, but for $25.00 a can, it was a little pricy for me. The Eyeko Black Magic Mascara on the other hand did not work at all whatsoever. I found that it was very wet when it went on, which is not necessarily a bad thing but it was ALL over my face, and then during the day it flaked really badly which is not good for those of us who wear contacts. 

My hair is super thin, so I don't really use a lot of styling creams because they tend to weigh my hair down. I haven't yet tried the Number 4 Texture Styling Creme, however I think one day when I'm going out I will try it. I have tried different products from Number 4 before, and I do enjoy most of their products. 

The BioRepublic Skincare Green Tea Purifying Fiber Mask Set was really good, though I don't know if I would pay about $15.00 for it. I feel like I could find a mast that is a little cheaper that works just the same. It was very nice though, and super cooling and refreshing. Overall, I'm usually impressed by the Birchboxes, which is why I continuously stay with them. 
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Book Review: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children

Recently, after hearing people talk about it and highly rave about it what seemed like everywhere, I picked up the book Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. This book was absolutely fantastic and I would rate it 5/5 stars, every time. After reading it through one time, I really want to read it through a second time, however my roommate is reading it now so I can't. I read this book in two days -- I literally brought it to work and read on all my breaks. People would try to talk to me, and I was like PLEASE DO NOT TALK TO ME THANK YOU. 

The story itself is about a young boy named Jacob who goes on an adventure with his father following a family tragedy. He goes to an abandoned orphanage on a tiny Welsh island, which is incredibly hard to get off of/get in contact with. On this island, he finds the orphanage of his grandfathers stories and what ensues is almost complete chaos. He finds the children of his grandfathers stories, who are stuck in a time loop, and begins to find out more and more of his grandfather's past.

One of the reasons that I adore this book so much is because of the time loop situation. The time loops in general are so good, however the loop that Jacob and his grandfather go into is during World War II (which is what my degree is in). It's so interesting to me to find that they repeated the same day, over and over and over again. The children in the time loop don't age, since they live the same day over and over again, so it is as if they are suspended in time. However, if they step outside of the time loop and are outside of it for an extended period of time, they age rapidly. 

The book is very creepy, and has its moments of 'woah that's kind of terrifying', but that's one of the reasons in which I picked it up. I was reading it during October and wanted something that was spooky without being downright scary. This book is definitely one that you have to pick up the hard copy of because they have a ton of photographs in it of the children and other characters throughout the book. 

They are adapting this book into a movie, which makes me want to finish the trilogy because whenever they adapt books into movies, sometimes they spoil things (a la Mortal Instruments), and this is one series that I really don't want spoiled. 

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Coming Back...Again

I could sit here and give you reason upon reason in which I haven't written in forever. But the truth is, I haven't really wanted to. I'm extremely bad at doing things that I don't want to do, and honestly lately I've been loving living life in the now. Previously, since I hadn't written so much I felt extremely overwhelmed with all the things I wanted to write about because I thought I had to write everything down. If I didn't write it down, wouldn't I forget it? What if I didn't have enough time. 

Honestly, there's a ton of stuff that has happened recently I would love to write about. But as of right now, I'm starting over. So think of this as a new introduction to who I am. Hi, nice to meet you. My name is Maria and I work for Disney World full time. This means that some weeks I work 32 hours, but most weeks I work 40-50 hours, which is one of the many reasons I haven't written lately. I love working for Disney, and am getting used to my job. I am dating a guy named Christian, who still lives in California. I share an apartment with two other girls, and though Florida is great and all, I think about moving home all the time. 

I have a few pictures that I wanted to post that I took with my actual camera, but from here on out I'm not going to try and recap everything that happened in California and everything I felt. I'm going to try and write my posts the night before for the next day. Sometimes it'll happen, and sometimes it won't happen. But after taking a month (or so) off of blogging and just becoming acclimated with my new schedule, I think I'm ready. For the beginning I'm going to for sure try and post every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

I've also got a YouTube Channel (click here) that I post to more so regularly than here, especially since I had a backlog of footage when Christian came down to visit. 

Here's to new beginnings (for the millionth time), and finding what I love.
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The Best Baseball Stadium Ever...PetCo Park

The first time that Christian and I went to San Diego, I fell in love with PetCo Park. We walked all over, and I fell in love with the city. But it was as we drove by that I fell in love with the park. It's in the middle of downtown San Diego, and the views inside the stadium are absolutely stunning. Since Christians sister and brother-in-law live near San Diego, we always had a reason to go and visit. 

The park opened in 2004 and is the current home to the Padres. Now, I don't know a ton about baseball, but my favorite team is the Padres. Partially because the stadium is beautiful, partially because their colors are blue, and lastly because Christian's favorite team is the angles and I had to choose a different team. He said that I couldn't be a Dodgers fan, and the A's and the Giants were too far away. So, the Padres it is! 

One of my favorite things about the park is that, even if the tickets are sold out (or the tickets are crazy expensive) is that you can still get in. Instead of buying a ticket to the game, you can get access to this little grassy park area right next to the stadium. Even if you buy a ticket to the game, you can still have access to the area. 

Before I left, Christian had promised to take me to a Padres game. I had been wanting to go to a Padres game since I first saw the stadium and the second Friday before I left, he made it happen. A ton of stuff had been going on, and I was working crazy hours, but we made it happen. He drove the four hours (because hey, traffic), and we made it in time to see the second inning. We walked around, and he showed me the sights. It was bittersweet because it was our last game at a stadium while I was in town. It was a good game, and something I'm glad that I was able to experience while I was still there. I can't wait to go to more when I go back to visit.
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Breakfast Dates: Steakhouse 55

One of Christian & I's favorite things to do is go to breakfast. Breakfast food is the best food, hands down in both of our books. So while I was in California, Christian pretty much made it a point to make sure that I ate at all the best breakfast places he could think of. We ended up going to a place that was one of his family's favorites, and one of his favorites, Steakhouse 55. Steakhouse 55 is located in the Disneyland Hotel, nestled away in a back corner. We had gone there for dinner a few weeks before but this time he wanted to show me breakfast.

The atmosphere in general is worth it, and the breakfast isn't that expensive. It was so delicious, and definitely a place that I would like to go back to whenever I go back to California to visit. We both ended up getting the same thing, with different sides. I got the fruit and he got the potatoes, but we ended up sharing (typical). The breakfast was amazing, and the service was fantastic. There's honestly not much I can say otherwise besides that if you have the chance to go for breakfast, you should take it.
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Take Me Out to the Dodgers Game

Since Christian's favorite team is the Anaheim Angles, and my best friend's favorite team is the LA Dodgers, I had to check out both. I had been to a couple of games with Christian, so it was finally time to go to the LA Dodgers Stadium to "get the full experience." Let me just say it was quite the experience. Eerin and his brother picked me up from my apartment, with snacks in tow, and we went on our way to the game. 

I wasn't quite sure what to expect, but the second that I got there, I was ecstatic. We were there super early, so we waited outside the gate for about 15 minutes. Once we got in, we got a free t-shirt since we were there insanely early, and I ended up buying an all black flat billed LA dodgers cap. After watching a few innings, we walked around and I got some nachos. Now, here's the thing. I love nachos. Every stadium that I go to, I get nachos. It's a new tradition, you could say.

After the game, which was a really good game, we went to get some hot dogs and just talked all the way home. It was such a good game, and something i'm glad that I experienced. I loved seeing the scenery (which is way better than Angles stadium, if you ask me), and the company was just way too good to pass up.  
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Pluto Meets A Service Dog

One of the most magical things, and probably the sweetest thing, that I saw while I was in Disneyland was the day that Pluto met a Service Dog. I'm not sure why the service dog was there, or what was happening, but it was so cute. Some friends and I were just walking into Disneyland to hang out for a little bit, when on Main Street we spotted a little bit of a crowd gather. We, being the nosy people that we are, wanted to see what was going on. So, we scooted our way over to see what was happening. Then out of no where, we see Pluto on the ground posing for pictures with a huge service dog. I honestly think the pup was a great dane. It was so cute. 

Working in Disneyland gave me some access to some of the most creative and magical moments that happen all over the park, and even gave me the opportunity to create some of my own. I was able to talk to families during the parades, and fireworks, and get to know them. I had the power to make a decision to do something, if I wanted to. It was such a great feeling creating something special for families when they didn't expect it. It was so great to get families and walk them to the front of the line when there were crazy lines, or even something as simple as giving the young ones a sticker or a drivers license. 

My most memorable magical moment that I created was for a little boy. He was about seven years old, and he had lost his one of a kind, create your own, droid from the Star Tours store. He lost it somewhere on our ride, and after about 20 minutes of having other people searching for me, and searching as much as I could, I wanted to do something more about it. So, I talked with my lead, and they gave me permission to replace it for him. I was able to give the gift of another, one of a kind, droid to this little boy, who spent his own money on it. His mom was so grateful and he gave the biggest hug in the world. It's the little things like that, that meant the most. It wasn't super expensive, and it brightened this little boys day.  
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Throwback Tuesday: Bowling with the Disney World CP's

This is one of the first pictures that I have with some of the people who have changed my life for the better during my first college program in Walt Disney World. We had gone bowling at Splitsville in Downtown Disney to just hang out and get to know each other better. It was the first time we went there, but definitely not the last. They had a great deal for $5 bowling with shoes after a specific time, and we figured why not. 

The people in this picture helped me, for better or for worse. I laughed and cried with them, they were there for my 17 hour days, and my 6 hour days. When I got the flu they were there for me, and since we celebrated pretty much every holiday together, they were my family. We may not all talk as often as we would like now, and it's hard to keep in touch when everyone leads such different lives, but we try. We've still got a group text message going on, and we still follow everyone on snapchat. It's not the same, but it's something. It's good to see how everyone is doing on Facebook and see who's planning on coming back and when.

I was originally going to post this on Thursday, but it's only right that I post it now, as I start my career back with Walt Disney World down in Orlando. Today I'm going through traditions, and it brings back all my old memories from my first program that got me started down a path where I wanted to be going. I'm not sure how the people are going to be at my new location, or even if we'll get along. While I'm nervous about beginning this new path with the company, I'm excited to see where it will take me.
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Building A Bed From IKEA

Before moving to California, I had never been to IKEA before. I had heard of this wonderful, magical place but there wasn't one near us that I could go to so I had never went. However, whenever it came time to move out of College Program housing and into a real apartment, one of my friends asked me to accompany her to IKEA to help get furniture and a bed and build it. Silly me, thought that it wouldn't be that difficult, so why not. When I got to IKEA I was so overwhelmed by the amount of things they had, I didn't know where to start. 

She had been to IKEA before because that is where she got her furniture for college from, so she was basically a pro at this. She walked me through the upstairs (and downstairs), and showed me everything which helped me get an idea of what I wanted to buy for my apartment in Orlando. Everything was going great. We walked through, picked out her furniture, picked it up from downstairs, and checked out. Then came the hard part: getting everything into the car. Boy oh boy was it a challenge. She has a Honda Civic, which aren't the biggest cars in the world (space wise), so we had to really think. 

It was a good thing that I'm pretty good at Tetris and she's pretty good at helping lift things, because about an hour later we got everything into her car and were on our way back to her place. By the time we got everything out the car, with a stop to get pizza along the way, it was getting dark outside. Little did we remember that her room in her apartment didn't have an overhead light, so we definitely couldn't build the furniture that night. Once we got everything out, and into her room, we said goodbye to the apartment for the night and headed back home.

The next day, I promised her that I would help build her bed after our 8 hour shifts at work. We were exhausted and hot, but we had a mission. After about an hour, we finished building the bed and we were so proud. The literal first words out of our mouths were "we didn't kill each other, and we're still friends." That, my friends, is how you know your friendship will last.
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