A Quarter of a Century (Wild Africa Trek)

Birthday 1

25 times around the sun

Last week I celebrated my birthday and I have to say that it was definitely the most memorable, happiest, greatest birthday that I’ve ever had. To be fair we had a lot of stuff going on, but this was the first year that I felt like time was honored. It was the first year I planned something in advance that I had been wanting to do for a long time, and the first year when I was thrown a little surprise party.

I have always found that I have loved adulthood far more than childhood. My ability to create my own life without any boundaries has created far more happiness than the past gift of zero responsibilities. I get a thrill out of paying my rent every month because I know that I get to live in a city I love, with friends I love, and get up to go to a job that I love.

My intentions this year were to make good on the past saying of: “We should do ____”. Which mostly consisted of my roommates and I talking about things we wanted to do but then never making solid plans or saving for. My birthday was the start of crossing one of those off the list which was The Wild Africa Trek at Animal Kingdom. My Mom, friends, and I all stayed at the Cabins at Fort Wilderness which we had also never done. It was absolutely gorgeous and is now one of my favorite resorts.

Continue reading

January Favorites: New Year, Cool Stuff

Win some, lose some, here are my favorites the past 2 months.

Movies

the last jedi

The Last Jedi

Do any other movies need to be on this list? No? Good, because this is actually the only movie I saw in theaters since Thor. There is a lot of heated debate around the Last Jedi. Some points are understandable, others, not so much. My personal thoughts on this movie were that the dialogue was lacking a bit, but I really loved Kylo and Rey’s storyline. I can understand how it could’ve been underwhelming to superfans who spent a year theorizing about the possibility of the plot-twist, but being just a general fan, I was happy.

My personal favorite part of this storyline is that it really showed the flaws and dynamic of all the male protagonists and the strength of the females. Particularly that of Poe, his rise and fall within the resistance and his relationship with Leia was fascinating and wonderful. She was his teacher and within this movie he made mistakes and learned from them.

I also have to say that I really disliked the Rose and Finn storyline. Not them as characters but their romance was odd and unneeded to prove the point of the film. HOWEVER, the cinematography was great, the throne scene was the most epic piece of film I’ve ever witnessed, and the 10 second-silent scene was incredible. We saw this on opening night and went back again Christmas Day.

Continue reading

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

Continue reading

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.

Continue reading

A Very Disney December

I’ve made a few posts since I got back from Orlando, but I’ve finished finished up most of the photos and kind of gotten everything straightened back out. I start back to school on Monday, so the posts may be later than normal (or not, I might be superwoman), so be prepared. 

I went to Disney from December 21st through December 28th. We visited Universal as well as all the Disney Parks. I only used my 50mm lens while I was there since I wanted some more detail shots. I didn’t take as many as I usually would, it was pretty dreary for most of the trip which was fine as I missed that Florida rain. I also purchased my first Annual Pass so I’m planning on returning in March for Flower and Garden and in October for Food and Wine and Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party. 

These are just a few shots, but you can view all my Disney photos here: cm_kayla on flickr: Disney 

Gringotts

Gringotts

Continue reading