disneyland

Annual Traditions

Fall-Filled week @ Disneyland

It may have happened over a month ago, and I may be super late, but it was still totally AWESOME!

After moving into an apartment with 3 of my friends after my CP it’s become sort of a family tradition for us to go to Disneyland every year now (apparently). It began in October 2016 with Celine and Brian’s first ever trip, and then as the Fall months came back around we started to get antsy to head back to the better Disney park, so we packed up our bags and headed back a little bit earlier in the year. 

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Valley of Mo'ara

Exploring the World of Pandora

Valley of Mo’Ara

I realized this morning that I’ve never posted anything about Pandora either here or on my youtube channel since the land opened at Animal Kingdom. Mostly because everytime I’ve been it’s either incredibly crowded or too rainy to bring my camera. But I’ve come to change all that because I do have a few pictures from this beautiful land that I would love to show you! First of all make sure you guys check out my flickr HERE to see all these beautiful photos in hi-res!

I’d like to give a shoutout to my beautiful friend and roommate Celine who helped open this incredible world to Animal Kingdom. She’s a complete boss and I’m so proud of her. Therefore a lot of these photos are of her in and her homeland.

Valley of Mo'ara 8

 Valley of Mo'ara 7

Valley of Mo'ara 6

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4th Cover

4th of July – Disney Style

photography vs vlogging

I have to say that between the two I’m not sure which I enjoy more. If you guys didn’t know I still run my youtube channel HERE which you can check out if you’d like. I have a few vlogs up from Disney but recently most of them have been about BOOKS! And when my entire apartment had off for 4th of July I couldn’t decide whether I wanted to take photos, film, or both.

I ended up having to choose just because it was such a hot day filled with shenanigans that I really didn’t want to have to keep switching my lenses. If you didn’t know I only own my kit lens + a 50mm portrait lens and switching them back and forth is a pain and not something I’d like to subject my camera to all day long.

As per usual, I opted for photos! So if you’d like to check out our vlog from that day, make sure to keep an eye on HILLARY’S channel for that video soon.

Getting patriotic

Kayla in front of Spaceship Earth

Hillary Vlogging

CJ & Kayla Spaceship Earth

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Adulting & When Life Gets in the Way

THINGS THAT I MISS ABOUT MY OLD LIFE

I know it’s been about a month and a half since I’ve written on this blog. I’ve had two posts hanging out, waiting to be posted, but in all honesty the longer they sit there the more I don’t feel like putting them out into the world. One was simply about kindness, but it felt too dramatic, the other about books, but now that I have a youtube channel my blog is in the background.

And with the holidays going on and a list of things getting in the way of being productive, I have been thinking about how different my life is from back home. In both good and bad terms. And by far what I miss the most about working at the library is my ability to preplan my day and the lack of physical exhaustion. It’s true, working on the front line at Disney puts your body to the test and it has made me have to give up some of my favorite activities in order to reserve my energy for work.

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Visiting Disneyland + I have a Youtube Channel!

The happiest place on earth

California Adventure

Disneyland

Back in July my roommates and I made a joke about flying to California and going to Disneyland together. The joke turned into more of a reality when we started looking at flights and hotels in the area. We found a great rate on a Marriott nearby, and flights were high, but doable. And so in August we booked our trip for late October, excited to be there during the Halloween season. This personally would be my 3rd time to Disneyland, but my roommates first (though Hillary has been to Disneyalnd park before).

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Finance_Cover

Adulthood and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad paycheck

Money_Blog

Whether you’re fresh out of college, well into your first year as an adult, living at home with your parents, or finally out on your own the one thing we all struggle with is our personal finances. There are about a million different tv shows,  books, and websites out there all giving you different advice on what to do with your money. But which one is actually right?

I don’t know the answer to that one either, but as a post-grad myself I thought I’d share a few of my favorite sites and tips for saving money now that you’re paying (most) of your own bills and (unfortunately) student loans. First thing is first: nothing in this is definitive nor is it going to make sense for everyone. You can never look at David Ramsey or Suze Orman and take their advice religiously because everyone’s experiences and situations are different. That goes for anything in this post or any of these sites that I’m going to list. Find what is easiest for you and make it work for your situation.

Where I Came From (College) & Where I’m Going

To add some background to this post, I’m about 7 months out of college. I moved from my home in Kansas all the way down to Sunny Orlando and currently work at Walt Disney World Parks and Resorts Part-Time. I live in a 3 bedroom apartment with 4 of my friends just a couple miles outside of property and suffice to say, pay all of my own bills and expenses. Before I lived at home and commuted to my University and worked as a Part-Time Librarian. Right now I’m mostly living the Full-Time (despite being PT) life, so most days just consists of work. I also have zero debt, which I will discuss below. However, that means I won’t be discussing paying off debt because my experience is limited.

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Celebration

Life is not the mountain tops, it’s the walking in between

As much as I love my job and working for Disney, the most fun that I’ve had since moving to Orlando has always been when I’m on break talking with my coworkers, the nights when I come home at 10pm and my roommates and I gather in the living room to spend time together, or my full days off. Sometimes that means just  sleeping in and reading my books, or it means going out all day to Universal, Celebration, or a new area and exploring with my friends. I did quite a bit of that as of late as I was finishing up my CP at Hollywood Studios.

Universal

Make sure to subscribe to my roommate, Hillary’s youtube channel, she’s super cute and I pop up quite a bit. Celine, Hillary, and I were all off and decided to head to Universal for a girls day, but from the title you can see that we didn’t exactly bring enough umbrellas. We ended up stopping at Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlor and I tried Earl Grey Lavender Ice Cream and it really does taste like tea. It’s definitely not sweet like vanilla, but I really loved it and you don’t feel so bad for eating ice cream when it tastes like tea. We planned on hitting up the water rides, but by the time the rain passed, we were already soaked. ALSO, if you stop by Madam Malkins, they carry Hermione’s Yule Ball dress, except it’s only in kids sizes…for now.

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Looking Forward

Big news

Shoutout to my beautiful roommate and friend, Celine for the cover photo for this post.

There are a few things that I don’t really post in my blogs immediately about my life. Usually it’s career related, but it is mostly because I am not even sure how things are going to play out. At one point in the Spring I wasn’t even sure if I was going to be staying here at Disney. I don’t want people to think that I absolutely 100% know what I’m going to do all the time, because I don’t. I post the good stuff because me posting about how I’m just waiting to hear is rather useless. That’s boring, nobody cares, everyone has to make those adult decisions.

The good news is, I did decide to stay at Disney. I did end up loving my roommates, I did end up finding an apartment almost immediately with 3 of my best friends (whom last minute even decided to join) and I did end up getting an extension in Photopass. At one point, I thought I was stuck and yet here I am with exactly what I wanted. What a dream!

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Universal June

When New Becomes Normal

When New Becomes Normal

When visiting the most magical place on earth every day becomes normal. And driving to my Orlando apartment becomes normal. And paying my bills every month becomes normal. When waking up without having to go to college becomes normal. When standing out in the sun for 8 hours in 100* heat index becomes normal. When smiling at every guest and waving to every princess and prince becomes normal. And only needing to make plans based around what I want to do becomes normal. When magical becomes normal.

It’s a weird experience to have been here in Orlando for almost 5 months because it feels so much longer than that. I never knew if living here for real would ever feel “normal” or if I’d always have that uneasiness about living 1200 miles from where I grew up. And when I say normal, I don’t mean to say that it becomes boring. It becomes familiar, and fun, and I feel like I’m apart of it.

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Summer Wonder – It’s Heating Up at Hollywood

It’s only been about two and a half weeks since I last posted, but I feel like life is completely different from then. Last time I was around I was heading into my last shift at Mousegear and had just moved into my apartment a few days beforehand. I was soon switching my role to Photopass at Hollywood Studios. It’s been weeks of settling in, but everything is really starting to brighten up from the unknown and worry I had at the end of May.

I started training on the 15th with a class at DU entitled “Welcome to Entertainment”. For merchandise you have a Welcome to Operations class, but Entertainment was a lot more fun because you left the classroom and were able to explore around Magic Kingdom. I won’t specify the entire day as it’s kind of a fun surprise, but it was a short class and I met some nice people that day. The next day I had my 2 core training days. We had to get our costumes before our training so myself and a friend picked out our costumes at Magic Kingdom after Welcome to Entertainment. I ended up visiting Animal Kingdom the next day because they had no shorts available at MK and it’s been sweltering. I was able to find a couple pairs.

Core training is basically the same as merchandise, only you’re obviously learning how to use the Nikon cameras instead of handling cash. I had a lot of fun with the girls in our class and the trainers those two days. We went outside our classroom to shoot and on the 2nd day visited Hollywood Studios to take shots of each other and guests to learn the photos we’d have to take on the job. In the end I was sad we all had to split up to start training at our home park. Altogether there was 3 of us heading to DHS, though there are more CPs than we had met that had classes on different days.

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