Friday, February 28, 2014

Day 424: FAF: Swiss Family Treehouse

I'd like to say that while last year it was the Disney history that slowed me down, this year it is very much so the Featured Attraction Friday posts. They just take me such a long time to actually get done, especially when I get behind in general. Which means I now have about three or four to do...if I want to get ahead so I don't get behind again come Friday, because Fridays are just not good days for me apparently.

But it's a good thing I have Tuesdays to help catch myself up. Works pretty well I think. Granted, I have plenty of other word I should be doing at the same time, but this is important too! It always really annoys me when I'm behind on my blog, and since I've got videos to edit from my trip and band stuff to work on, plus all my work here at college, I had better just get caught up right now.

And so, here we have the last Featured Attraction from February! Gosh that was so long ago!

What's On The Map:

Explore the ultimate tree house - inspired by the classic Disney film (WDW Park Maps) and Swiss Family Robinson. This attraction recreates the home of the Robinson family built following a shipwreck. When their ill-fated ship, the Swallow, becomes stranded off the coast of an uninhabited South Seas island after a pirate attack, the Robinson family unites to build a new home inside a huge tree, utilizing wreckage from the ship. But the pirates return, and the Robinson family must band together and evade capture.

Embark on a breezy walk-through tour of the Robinson's famous home nestled high inside a towering tree. Cross a bride at the foot of a large leafy tree and climb handcrafted wooden stairs as you explore the famed living quarters of the Swiss Family Robinson and learn of their island adventure. Discover open-air rooms - brimming with a bevy of 19th century articles salvaged from the famous shipwreck (WDW Website).

A Brief History Lesson: 

Today's history comes from the Disney Wikia!

It all started before Johann Wyss wrote the novel Swiss Family Robinson, when he imagined with his children about what it would be like if they were stranded on an island. They ended up coming up with crazy ideas and adventures for his characters, the Robinsons. Later, Disney created a film adaptation of the novel, and two years later Disneyland introduced the first Swiss Family Treehouse in Adventureland.

In 1971, with the opening of Walt Disney World, The Swiss Family Treehouse was an original, opening Adventureland attraction. The tree is actually made up of steel, concrete and stucco, reaching up to 60 feet tall and 90 feet wide, perfectly resembling the tree in the film.

Later versions of the tree house were introduced in Euro Disneyland and Tokyo Disneyland, while the original at Disneyland was changed to Tarzan's Treehouse in 1999.

Fun Facts: 

  • In Disney's Sing-Along Songs, Disneyland Fun, the Swiss Family Treehouse sign was seen, during the song "Following the Leader." 
  • In the "Walt Disney World celebrating 100 years of magic book," they unofficially classify the tree's genus as "Disneyodendron eximus," which translates as "out-of-the-ordinary Disney tree."

My Thoughts: 

I haven't been up in the tree house for a few years. In fact, right now it's down for refurb, so there's no way I could have gone on it on this last trip. Either way, I guess I never really appreciated it until recently. It was always just something to walk through for me as a kid, because I have never seen the movie nor had I read the book (I have now). My brother always liked it because he would like to see how they had all the baskets and water wheels and what-not set up. Or something like that. 

I do, however, remember a time we watched Wishes from the treehouse. That was pretty awesome if I do say so myself. 

Have a magical day!

(Note: This blog post was written on March 25 due to Midterms & Travel)

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Day 423: A Few of My Favorite Things V5

When I was going through my various days I still have to make up as far as blog posts go, I realized that I haven't really done much in my series posts lately, other than YouTube of course. There's just so many videos out there that it's hard to skip past them. But I haven't had a Disney Collection Post or Favorite Things post since like December, and now, as I write this, it's almost April! Gosh time goes by quickly!

So yesterday, Megan and I determined that today's Favorite Things post will focus on my favorite Disney Characters, and she suggested I split it further into various sections. I like the idea, because I can go a little more in depth, and include more than like two in each category. There are so many wonderful movies out there that it's hard to just pick one or two, am I right?

First, today, we'll have a post focusing on Heroes and Heroines of the different films. So in other words, our main characters. Then, the next Favorite Things post will include Favorite Villains and Badguys before rounding it out with a post on sidekicks and other random characters that I love. Seems like a good idea, right? I think so.

So, here are some of my favorite heroes and heroines from Disney films!

Hero #5: Prince Phillip maybe that Phillip is from Festival of Fantasy...but it still counts, right? Either way, Phillip is awesome. He's funny, knows how to randomly dance in the woods, can sing, fight dragons and overall, is pretty awesome. He actually ranks in strongly as my second favorite Disney Prince, so he's got to be on this list, right? 

Heroine #5: Anna

I'm not gonna lie, when I first heard about Frozen I was skeptical...but then again, wasn't I the same way with Princess and the Frog, and Tangled, and Wreck It Ralph? Yeah, I suppose so. Frozen, however, has won over my heart, at least a bit. Tangled still ranks above it for sure, as do Lady and the Tramp and Beauty and the Beast, but I'd say it's worked it's way up to the number four spot in my favorite Disney films (ranking in with Number 2 of recent years if you include the split). And my favorite character is easily Anna, although I'm pretty sure it's because when we sing the songs here at college, we all decided that I sound most like her. It's kind of funny because my friend Emily will sing Elsa's part, and I'll be over here singing Anna's, and it sounds pretty good. Plus she's just adorable. 

Hero #4: Bambi

Seriously, how can you not love this little guy? I honestly think that Bambi is one of the best Disney films, if only because of the villain. I'll talk more about it on the Villains post that goes along with this one, but it's brilliant to showcase how we, as humans, are just as much the villain as any other being out there. It's such a powerful message. And then there's Bambi himself, who is just plain awesome. He's got so much to learn about the world, no matter how old he gets, and then the whole fire thing, and his friends and then he lives on as the Great Prince of the Forest. I mean, is that cool or what? 

Heroine #4: Ellie 

I'm not sure if this totally counts because she's not really the main character of the movie, but you do feel her spirit throughout the entire thing. And if there's one movie that never ever fails to make me cry, it's Up. Those first 8 minutes are absolutely beautiful, and seriously I doubt anything will ever come up to par with them. The love story of Carl and Ellie is just...I have no words for it. And Ellie herself, in both physical form and spirit, gives us one of the greatest messages about love there has ever been in a Disney film. 

Hero #3: Woody & Buzz

I tried to pick just one, I really did, but ultimately I love these two pretty equally. Toy Story, without one or the other, would just be an awful story. Plus, they're best friends now, partners in crime, and I feel like you can't always rank one above the other. Woody and Buzz each have their own unique story to tell, and a role in the overall tale of the toys, both are leaders and funny and have flaws, but they even each other out, so that's awesome. And you know, a little bit of them reminds me of me and my best friends, because while we're very different, we work well together. So they both make it onto the list in the #3 spot. 

Heroine #3: Belle & Lady

I was running out of spots, and since these two movies are tied on the end of favorite classic Disney film, I felt that Belle and Lady were really about the same on my scale anyways. Lady and the Tramp was one of my favorites as a kid, especially since I have always loved dogs. Beauty and the Beast I've loved on and off, but Belle has always been my favorite there. I think it's because she loves reading and books, and so do I. Plus now one of my all time favorite Disney songs is "Belle" from the beginning of the movie, just because I think it's brilliant. 

Hero #2: Quasimodo

I don't care if it's not close to the original story! Quasimodo is one of my favorites and that's that! He's awesome. Plus the song "Out There" actually DOES rank in as my favorite Disney song of all time. I think his story is yet another powerful one, and he's just so lovable that he just can't NOT be on this list. I love Hunchback, as it's for sure up there on my list of favorite Disney films (not at the total top, but it's a favorite for sure), and Quasimodo is just my favorite! 

Heroine #2: Mary Poppins

I feel like you just kind of have to love Mary Poppins. I mean, she's practically perfect in every way, and it's Julie Andrews and the movie is so brilliant and gosh. I just love Mary Poppins. Plus, she's certainly worked her way up on my list since I saw Saving Mr. Banks, probably because it's just more forefront in my mind. Either way, she most certainly ranks in as #2. 

Heroine #1: Rapunzel

We're going to list my #1 Heroine first because that way we can save my #1 hero for last, since he also happens to be my absolute favorite Disney character of all time. But I'm sure you saw this coming. Rapunzel is seriously my favorite. I don't really know why, although I sense it has something to do with the fact that I LOVE Tangled...much thanks to a certain person you'll see in a minute. Either way, Rapunzel is adorable, and I could literally sit and have conversations with her about apples and hair and horses all day. Oh, and maybe Frying pans too. It would be a wonderful life to live. 

Hero #1 & All Time Favorite Disney Character: Flynn Rider

Does this surprise you? Cause it shouldn't. As for this picture, it honestly took me a long time to decide on one...but for some reason this one of him and a candlestick just really stood out to me. It was like "THIS IS THE ONE YOU WANT TO USE FOR YOUR BLOG!" So I did. Where do I even start with Flynn though? He's just obviously my favorite. Like no questions asked. Did I freak out when I got to meet him last week? You bet I did. I was shaking and everything. AND THEN I GOT TO GIVE HIM A HUG. 

Dream. Come. True. 

Honorable Mentions: 

Heroes: Simba, Robin Hood, Pongo, Prince Eric, Tramp, Pinocchio & Stitch

Heroines: Tinkerbell, Tiana, Lilo, Sally (Cars) & Nala

Who's your favorite Disney character? 

Have a magical day!

(Note: This blog post was written on March 28 due to midterms and travel).

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Day 422: Flowers and Gardens

For some reason, this morning I found myself on the Walt Disney World website. Weird, I know, right? Either way, what popped up first? Of course, The Flower and Garden Festival! Since I'll be visiting for the first time in just a few weeks, I figured I'd take a look at what's all there so I kind of know what to expect. Truthfully though I have no clue, and have really had no wish to go to Flower and Garden before, but the closer we get to it the more excited I find myself getting. Maybe it's just because I'm going to Disney in general or what, but hey...I'll take it!

So, since I'm going through the website I figured why don't we do a list! Haven't done one of those before, and this will kind of be a My Favorite Things post, in two parts. First, here, we'll have the top 5 things I am most excited about when it comes to the Flower and Garden Festival, and when I get back after seeing it for the first time, I'll give you a list of my 5 favorite things I got to see, eat or experience! Seems like a good plan, right?!?

5. Just Being There

Now, like I said, I've never really wanted to go to the Flower and Garden Festival. I'm much more of a Food and Wine Festival kind of person. much food and I love it. But I'm never there at either time of year to go to either of the special events, so I just live my life happily with Christmas Decorations. But that doesn't mean I'm not excited about getting to experience the Flower and Garden Festival! Everyone else in my family, meaning my parents and my brother have all been there, and I haven't. It's probably because I haven't really ever been there in the spring, but that's beside the point.

4. Special Merch

It's not really a secret that I LOVE my Disney merchandise. I mean, in my dorm room alone I have tons of Disney Shirts, my vinlymation, Disney cups and Plates and Bowls and...wait...I should do a My Disney Collection post on my dorm room! Brilliance aside, I am very excited about the fact that for the first time in forever (lol) I will actually get a Flower and Garden Festival pin because I WENT TO THE FLOWER AND GARDEN FESTIVAL! There are occasions that I have like a Food and Wine Festival pin just because I was able to grab one right after the festival ended, but it will be awesome to actually go to the event and get a pin from it. Way more fun. I mean, really, who doesn't love Disney Merch?

3. The Topiaries

As I was saying, my parents have been to the Flower and Garden Festival before, which means I've seen countless pictures of the special topiaries they have there. And little do you guys know that they start growing those things WAY in advance (Actually that was probably pretty obvious), and I got to see basically all of them a few years ago in the horticulture department when I was on my Backstage Magic Tour. But that's the closet I've come to actually seeing the Topiaries.

In particular, there are a few I'm really excited about and can't wait to see. It will be really awesome to see the one in front of Spaceship Earth in real life, that's for sure. I've seen similar stuff at Christmas, but never the Flower and Garden Festival one (obviously). I also read that Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy will be around for the first time this year, and Lightning McQueen and Mater will be returning! But I'd be lying if I said I wasn't excited about a certain Pirate with a waxed mustache and a perm (Are they bad?)

2. The Wonders of Life Pavilion

Being a life-long Disney fan and "resident" of Walt Disney World, I've seen my fair share of new and old buildings. I remember watching Horizons be replaced with Mission SPACE (I miss Horizons), and yes, I do remember the days of the old The Living Seas. Which means I also remember another pavilion that's gone completely: The Wonders of Life. Ahh the days of Cranium Command and Body Wars (never actually went on that one though...Haha), I remember them, and since it's closing I have been excited about the prospect of getting back in the building. It is not uncommon to find me standing outside just staring at the building because I'm so jealous other people get to go in it (the same runs true for the Millennium Celebration building). My mom and my brother, for instance, have both been in the building during the F&G festival, but I haven't.

Yes, I know it's absolutely nothing like it once was, or what it is in my "A Day at Epcot Center" video, but that doesn't mean I'm not excited about going in the building and having a mini freak out session about the fact that I'm standing there. It's just special.


Did you really expect anything less from me? Like seriously.

Starting last year I believe, the F&G Festival added a bit more flavor to the event by including "Outdoor Kitchens," which have tons of different food options that are normally not around. The problem is, with so much awesome food around, how in the world am I going to choose what to eat!?! I mean, we're talking "Frushi" in Japan, which is basically fruit sushi, Gnocchi in France, Beijing-Style Candied Strawberries in China, Basically Italy in General, Freshly Baked Potato and Cheddar Cheese Biscuit with smoked salmon tartare in the UK and then there's, of course, Spice Road Table to check out now too. TOO MUCH FOOD FOR ONE LIZZIE.

And yet I will totally eat all of it.

Tune back in a few weeks from now for the second part of this post, which is also the next volume of "A Few of my Favorite Things!"

Have a magical day!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Day 421: #NoMoreSpoilers

Guys, I've hit my breaking point.

This morning I was sitting in music theory and scrolling through Twitter while we were waiting for our professor to cue up a video. Over the past few days, the spoilers for Once Upon A Time have been thick, like a ton of them, and as I went through past the different Once twitter accounts I follow and their tweets that basically all had spoilers about New York City Serenade, I was like "NO!!!!!!!!" And proceeded to unfollow all the unofficial Once accounts (I am still following like the official Once twitter, and of course all the actors and writers I currently have. I take pride in the fact that I follow just about every single one of them).

So no more twitter spoilers.

And then I went on my phone onto Tumblr and logged out, and since getting my new phone, I haven't transferred my passwords from my old one to my new one. Because they're all different I keep them in a protected thing on my phone, and only memorize the ones I log into all the time: my email, school accounts, blogger and Facebook. That's it. I honestly don't even remember my twitter password. If I for some reason get logged out I have to go back into my old phone and figure out what the password is.

In other words, no more tumblr.

Which leaves me with official spoilers, promos and Ginnifer Goodwin, who regularly posts articles with spoilers and then I read them, as well as her Behind the Scenes countdown for S3B. But I figure those are official enough for me to be looking at them.

So no spoilers on Instagram other than Ginny's.

On Facebook I never followed any none there.

Pinterest is free too, as I unfollowed Once Boards a really long time ago the last time I went on Spoiler Hiatus.

I still follow several Once fans on YouTube however, which I find to be ok, as long as I'm careful with what I watch. Back when they released the CaptainSwan kiss, we avoided it like the plague so we wouldn't see it before Good Form actually came out (WHICH IS ONE OF TWO EPISODES THEY'RE SHOWING BEFORE THE NEW ONE!!!! That means it's important), but then we watched one of the fan videos and saw the kiss anyways. But these people are super talented and I love watching all the videos they come up with, so I'll just leave that be. I'm not expecting to see anything until after the new episode anyways.

And so, it is like a weight is lifted from my shoulders. I feel so much better about life. And Megan, my roommate (and Shovell too haha), I'm mentioning you by name this time, I think I might actually be ok. Maybe. We'll see.

Have a magical day!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Day 420: You vs. Me

Here's a tip, brought to you by Pinterest even though I'm pretty sure I've shared this one before:

In all seriousness, please don't try this at home. Like just...don't. It's very true...YOU WILL NOT WIN. 

Sadly, it seems that some people I know haven't totally figured this out yet, and regularly I DO get people arguing with me about Disney. I know in Philosophy class we were talking about how it's good to have free and equal discussion about stuff, like our opinions and beliefs, because if a person can prove us wrong, then we should be listening. It's like the saying to keep your friends close and your enemies closer. The more you learn about those against you and the arguments they present, the stronger your going to be in the long run. 

BUT, there is a point where you just need to not try. Because 95% of the time, if you try to argue with me about something involving Disney, I will argue with you until I do prove you wrong, and often times I don't even need to do any background research. 

Let's take, for example, the topic Keith Lapinig is probably known best for: Beast's Real Name Isn't Adam. If you need a refresher, here's the video: 

Keith is like my #1 source for whether something Disney is true or not...and a huge portion of the time, it's not. Let's review a couple of times when things were said that went viral but actually weren't real: 

Remember this one? The one that went super viral on Facebook and I got at least 15 questions about (because in my little world it seems I am the Disney authority...but that's a topic for another blog post). Yeah, either way, THIS ISN'T REAL. If it was, at one point, then it isn't anymore, as I honestly have never meet these Characters or seen this in action. I can't imagine it is though, since it would be really rough on the costumes, and the costuming department IS a place I have been (and honestly can't wait to go back to someday. It was awesome). So, in other words, please don't do this. Nothing will happen. And don't even think about yelling "Bonnie's Coming!" cause that won't work either. 

There's also that idea going around that Elsa, Anna and Rapunzel are all cousins. I like this idea, and it is honestly one of my head-cannons, but deep down I KNOW it isn't actually real, and if you ask me about it I'll tell you that it isn't. It's fun to imagine things like that (especially since I love everything Tangled and the fact that Flynn and Rapunzel were in Frozen just about killed me), but that doesn't make them true. 

To quote Keith, we "live in an age where Wikipedia and Google have become our main source for information, even if it may be false information." In other words, it is basically the internet that spreads these rumors. Like I said, some are fun ideas, like the Pixar Theory, and a lot of times it makes a lot of sense, but that doesn't make it true. You can publish it all you want, and talk about it all you want, but that doesn't mean it's legitimate.

Shoutout to Keith for being awesome for debunking myths such as Adam and my personal favorite of his "If You Can Dream it, You can Do it." Guys...that's not a Walt Disney Quote. Just saying.

The lesson here? Don't argue with me about Disney. Tumblr, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and just about every social network can help to spread unofficial ideas and "truths" about Disney, and I'm more than happy to answer questions you have about Disney to the best of my ability. Not to say that I'm ALWAYS right, as I have been proven wrong before, but just...don't try to tell me things that are obviously internet rumors. I'll find the truth faster than you can say Hans Kristoff Anna Sven (no...not Hans Christian Anderson).

To watch Part Two of "Beast's Real Name Isn't Adam," click HERE, and don't forget to subscribe to Keith! =)

Have a magical day!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Day 419: The Packing List

I'm confused.

Throughout my entire life, I have generally traveled to Walt Disney World in the months of November, December or January, with the addition of one time I went in February, once in June and once in July. Other than that there are a lot of months of the year that I HAVEN'T been to Walt Disney World (or Disneyland if you include the August I traveled there), which means that when I go this next month, it's going to be a totally new experience.

I'm going down there for research mostly, to familiarize myself with the My Magic Plus system and Fastpass+ and everything just to make sure that I understand how to do everything before I am there with 60 other people all who have questions in June. I want to make sure the trip runs as smoothly as possible for all of them, so that means I need to know how it all works. Plus, I need a ton of video so I can make the trip video super awesome, and that's what I'll be spending 5 days doing: Filming, Filming and Filming. It's like full pre-production.

But there are lots of other new things I'll be experiencing. For instance, I've never been to the Flower and Garden Festival. I was to the Food and Wine Festival once, and I'm there at Christmas all the time, but other than that I never really get to see any of the special stuff when it comes to Epcot. Am I excited? Yeah, I guess I am (mostly about the food), but it does cause some problems video wise since I can't include anything in the video that the band won't see in June. And that means the beautiful displays of Epcot's Flower and Garden Festival.

My biggest problem of all though? Packing. I have no honest clue what to pack for this trip. Here in Wisconsin we're creeping up on the record for the most below-zero days in a single winter (yay...hear my sarcasm), but in Orlando, the current temp is 66, and it will be about this time of day that I land at the airport. Now, 66 isn't super warm. It's not warm enough to wear shorts all the time like I did in July down there, BUT, the high for the day is 75, and it's regularly getting up to the 80's, which is seriously around 70 degrees different from what it is here. But if during the day it's 80, shorts weather to us from Wisconsin right now, but 50-60 at night, WHAT DO I WEAR?

Sure, we could maybe get a locker each day to keep our sweatshirts in, since I doubt we're going to be park hopping a ton, not with so much to do, but that doesn't fix the problem of pants. Like I said, 80 is very much shorts weather right now for us, but by the time I get down there it might feel colder than what I think.

In other words, I feel like my packing list includes my entire closet. Despite the fact that I have a special surprise up my sleeve for March. What could it be? You'll find out very very soon.

So you have a magical day, I'll just be here working on homework and daydreaming about three weeks from now. =)

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Day 418: Officially Going Crazy

It's been a long however many days since the last episode of Once. Don't worry though, this isn't just another post about how much I miss Once Upon A Time...or the fact that it will be back in (As I'm writing this) exactly 15 days, 5 hours 2 minutes and 10 seconds [and counting]. And it's also not about the fact that I haven't been home in over six months and I won't be leaving to go back for another 23 days, 14 hours, 59 minutes and 40 seconds [and counting]. No, this is about how I am going to make it through the next two weeks without totally going crazy...because I'm pretty sure I am. You can ask my roommate.

I mean, last night I ended up actually watching "The Rite," which for those of you who don't know is a movie from 2011 that stars Colin O'Donoghue and is basically a mild horror movie. I don't watch horror movies...ever. But I did. And then there's the fact that I get Once updates so fast I liked Ginnifer Goodwin's picture of the day 36 seconds after she posted it. And when it comes to Disney news, I know about things faster than my mom 95% of the time. I mean, I do spend a good amount of time looking at the various Disney blogs that I follow. Blogger makes it really easy to do that. I've been doing the Disney Picture of the Month on Instagram again, and listening to Disney Parks music more than ever and reading fairy tales and finding some serious references to Once Upon A Time in my sociology book (no happened) and IT NEEDS TO BE MARCH.

So, here's my plan of action. First off, I really need to get my work done. I mean, the more I force myself to work on stuff, the less time I have to think about Disney and Once, right? It worked for the past three weeks, so why wouldn't it work for the next two? Granted, I have been sick all of this week, so trying to force myself to do work doesn't always work out so well for me, but now that I'm getting better I can totally get back into the habit. I mean...Hook is there on my desk saying "Not Studying? Bad Form." Plus...I really want to keep watching the show, so that means I really need to get my fairy tales reading done.

Two, I really need to have someone take my phone away. Like seriously all I do is check it over and over again. The plan? Leave it on my bed while working at my desk. I already put it on silent, so then I at least can't hear it because it will never vibrate and therefore I will have less of an urge to look at it. Makes sense...I think.

Since our fairy tales competition is getting interesting, and by interesting I mean people are sooo starting to cheat and use Disney parodies or references as "sightings." I find all of mine all by myself, no Disney connected (ok, maybe a little bit. It's kind of hard to NOT have fairy tales find you when you're as big of a fan as I am). So I have decided that if they're not going to play fair I won't either (ok...that's bad form. I'll play fair). They can have all the parodies of stuff on YouTube, but when I go to Disney in March, it's on. I'm going to go through my Hidden Magic of Walt Disney World book for the second time and see if I can pull out some smaller, hidden fairy tale references...and then I will HUNT THEM DOWN and make a video, special for my class. Seriously, I'm like Regina in the new Once promo just going "Bring It."

And then there's band trip work to be done, and packing lists, and video lists and a challenge to make up, right? I mean, what would one of my Disney trips be without a Disney challenge? Unless I'm just making my challenge to get all the video I need. That poor camera is going to be on just about 24/7, and my laptop is going to be absolutely filled to the brim with video of Walt Disney World. We'll make it work, and boy will it be worth it.

Other than that, I'm pretty sure that at some point in the next two weeks my friends and I will have a Storybrooke hot cocoa party (yes, it is sooo happening), and then come March 9 it will be like the biggest group of people watching we've had yet (we keep gaining fellow Oncers). Pretty soon we'll have to move into like an actual lounge somewhere just because we're going to run out of room in our dorm rooms. But it will be awesome. And then I'll do a whole bunch of other stuff (midterms...crap...included) and then go to DISNEY WORLD and I shall be super happy, and there will be new vlogs (I'm really excited about that) and all will be right in the world again.

And then I'll fall into a helpless depression that will only stop for an hour every Sunday night until the season ends and then I'll curl up in a dark hole until Disney in June. Just kidding, I survived this Hiatus (or almost have), and if I can do that, survive a double hiatus (Disney and Once), then I'm pretty sure I can survive anything.

Have a magical day!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Day 417: FAF: Mad Tea Party

Since I'm currently in the middle of reading (or just finished actually) Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, I figured that for this week's Featured Attraction Friday we'd go with the WDW Attraction that fits right along with it: The Mad Tea Party! It's kind of hard because some of the attractions I'm talking about that relate specifically to one of the fairy tales we're reading I haven't read the original story yet (Peter Pan for instance), but this one I HAVE read!

What's On The Map: 

"Pour yourself into an oversized teacup and twirl quickly or slowly amid a menagerie of color and sound. Celebrate your "un-birthday" in Wonderland as you sail back and forth around a towering teapot beneath a windswept party of paper lanterns, as festive music fills the air."

"Mad Tea Party is inspired by the Mad Hatter's party sequence in Walt Disney's animated classic Alice in Wonderland. Modeled after the original 1955 Disneyland park attraction of the same name, Mad Tea Party features the same resplendent floral colors, wacky architectural flourishes and objects of disproportionate size as seen in the movie. Today, some incarnation of the attraction exists at every Disney theme park around the world" (WDW Website).

A Brief History Lesson: 

Today's History comes from Disney Park History!

The tea cups were an opening day Fantasyland attraction at every Disney theme park except Tokyo Disneyland. The Disneyland version is the only version that does not have a roof over it to keep out the rain and sun, although Magic Kingdom's did not have a roof either until 1974, three years after the park opened. Disneyland's tea cups were original in the castle courtyard where the King Arthur Carousel now sits, but were moved to their current location near Matterhorn Mountain during the 1983 Fantasyland renovation.

Thought the ride is found in all five of Disney's Fantasylands, the ride's name does differ slightly. In Disneyland and Magic Kingdom Park, it is called Mad Tea Party, while in Disneyland Paris it is called Mad Hatter's Tea Cups, In Hong Kong Disneyland it is Mad Hatter Tea Cups and in Tokyo Disneyland it is Alice's Tea Party.

Fun Facts: 

Today's Fun Facts come from the Disney Wikia!

  • Three small turntables, which rotate counter clock-wise, each holding six teacups, within one large turntable, rotating clockwise, make up the attraction. 
  • The Dormouse can be seen popping his head out of a large teapot in the middle of the large turntable. This occurs only at Magic Kingdom and Tokyo Disneyland, as the other parks do not feature a central teapot. 
  • The original attraction at Disneyland is unable to run in the rain, once the turntables are saturated with a moderate amount of water they slip and can no longer spin. All other versions of this attraction are covered to prevent such situations, as well as protect riders from extreme heat and sun. 

My Thoughts: 

Like many of the other attractions on Featured Attraction Friday, I haven't ridden this one in a while. I have an actual great excuse this time though! You see, I have some serious motion sickness problems, so spinning around and around in a teacup does not sound like a pleasant time. In fact, when I am getting video for the band trip of the attraction I won't be on it at all! It will actually be one of my friends, taking the camera and recording while on the attraction for me! 

But aside from the fact that I can't really go on it, I do love how adorable it is, especially the Disneyland version. I think it's because I'm so used to seeing it with a top, but not having one at Disneyland is pretty awesome (even if it can't run in the rain). I actually also saw someone who made a Dapper Day Dress to match the tea cups and it is seriously the most brilliant dress I have ever seen. If I see it again I'll be sure to share it with you guys! 

Have a magical day!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Day 416: WDW Official Album

I take pride in the fact that I own just about every Disney Parks CD. What exactly does this mean? Well, first off, I have more Disney CD's than I can possibly count. Second, I literally have 7 versions of Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me), 5 recordings of Golden Dream and 5 copies of Grim Grinning Ghosts all on my phone. I've got music from the 80's, 90's, 2000's AND 2010's. Wondering what that one song that played on Spaceship Earth years ago was? Tomorrow's Child...and I can play it for you. In the mood for Kitchen Kabaret? Got you covered. Want to listen to two plus hours of Disney Parks background music? I do my homework to it.

I'm pretty sure at this point I really should stop, because in reality, there are only like two Disney Parks Official Albums I DON'T have. There's one from 1997 that I don't have (but am NOT paying a ton of money for thank you very much), and then the 50th Anniversary one. I mean, I love my collection, but not enough to buy music I already have...multiple times over.

On the opposite side, I DO happen to own the Candlelight Processional CD, the official Wishes and Illuminations soundtracks (Illuminations I used to have on Cassette...we listened to it all the time in our van when I was growing up. Like...ALL. THE. TIME.), and The Festival of the Lion King CD.

The list continues with the various other ones I have. But that's not what this is about. Remember a while back when I freaked out about the new Official Album (maybe I did...maybe I didn't. I can't find it. But behind the scenes...I freaked out). Anyways, I noticed there was a new one and made plans to get it for Christmas. Of course, it kind of fell through and I didn't actually buy it until now, but that's ok...I have it, and all is good.

The Album is literally like 90% the same as the last one I have...but that's ok. There are a few minor differences...and they're worth it! Sadly, Welcome Medley from Main Street is gone, but we have Flitterin' now, so that's good. Later we have music from NEW FANTASYLAND! Yeah, that means Be Our Guest Instrumental and a 10 minute long "The Little Mermaid Medley." Plus, Circus Parade and Casey Jr. from Storybook Circus!

But that's not even the one I'm most excited about. Literally the #1 reason I got this CD is the new Test Track theme. My brother and I listen to this music all the time (that tradition from when we were kids lives on), and one of the songs that's probably up there on the most played list is the old Test Track Medley (which I do have...multiple times over). The new score for 2.0 though...some of my absolute FAVORITE music at Walt Disney World. I love it (and haven't stopped listening to it for like the last 24 hours). Finally, the only other changes really are Indy being split up a bit and the addition of music from TOY STORY MIDWAY MANIA! Ok, so maybe I'm pretty excited.

Sadly, I don't have the Disneyland one yet. Soon people. Soon.

I just really love my Disney Parks music. And soon I'll be able to hear it in person. =)

Have a magical day!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Day 415: Disney Deja Vu

By definition, Deja Vu is "a feeling of having already experienced the present situation." We seem to have this all the time, right? I mean, often enough I'll suddenly feel like I've seem something before, more often than not in a dream. And I feel like it is safe to say that we will all, at some point in our lives, experience this.

But lately something weird has been going on...really since I came back to college. For lack of a better term, I have deemed it "Disney Deja Vu." So what's the definition of this? I honestly don't know, especially since it isn't always as much a situation as it just is a feeling. For example, here are some of my Disney Deja Vu moments from the past few weeks. We'll start with today and then go backwards as I can remember them:

1. Air

This honestly is going to sound really strange, but it's warm outside in Wisconsin (FOR ONCE IN OUR LIVES) and for some strange reason, despite the fact that it is still about 50 degrees warmer in Florida, it FEELS like Florida outside. Just something about the atmosphere reminds me of a morning at Disney. Maybe it's just the fact that it's morning, or that my brain is just going crazy from my medication and the warmer weather, but I swear it felt that way. It's nice.

2. Train Whistles 

I live in De Pere (at the moment because of college), and there happens to be a train track not far off our campus...meaning that whenever a train goes through, we can generally hear it, especially if you have your window open or are walking outside (Although if it's quiet enough outside and in your dorm you can often hear it through the window too). Of course, the whistle isn't quite the same, but it's kind of hard NOT to think about Disney when there are trains around.

3. Open Windows and Construction

This one confuses even me. Like a lot. But for some super strange reason it just is this way. The dorm I live in is right across the street from the new Science Building they are working on (or remodeling I guess). Either way, they've been working on it all year, and that means that at promptly 6:30 every morning, construction sounds begin. At the beginning of the school year it would wake us up. Now we just sleep through it. But because it's actually somewhat warm outside, and our dorm room has been like a sauna and my roommate and I hate that, we've had the window cracked for the last few days to keep it at a better temperature (leave it to us people from Wisconsin to open our windows when it's 30 degrees out). Anyways, so because our window is cracked, those construction sounds once again come into our dorm room, along with the quiet sounds of the city that surrounds our campus. Why does this remind me of Disney? I have absolutely no clue.

4. Saxophones

Ok, this one happened the other day and actually makes a lot of sense. I was sitting in the music lobby on Sunday morning, having just dropped my "kids" (High Schoolers staying with me for Winter Band Fest) off again and waiting for Megan and Katie to eat breakfast for real (because the High Schoolers had a limited one and I was hungry!) While I was waiting, some of the kids were warming up in the theory room that is just off the music lobby where I sit and work all day. They were playing just a few random notes, but they just happened to pick the one note that reminds me of one thing and one thing only: Disney Boats. You know, how they blow the horn as they come into the dock or pass another boat or basically go anywhere? Yeah...that horn. The saxophone sounded EXACTLY like it and I was just like "When did I get to Disney?"

Wondering what the sound was exactly? Here's a video with the horn on it if you skip ahead to about 1:15 (the horn is as 1:20 or 1:21 exactly).

5. Wind Ensemble

I honestly can never remember where it is or what song it is in (I should have made a note of it), but there was this one moment in one of our pieces that I was just like "DISNEY BUT I DON'T KNOW WHERE!" I'm kind of thinking it had something to do with Impressions de France again, but who really knows. Either way, it gave me some serious Disney Deja Vu.

I know there are a few more, but it's kind of hard to keep track of them when I don't write them down all the time. Either way, maybe it's just my medication (although when the saxophone was playing I wasn't on meds at all), or maybe I really am truly going crazy while waiting for March to get here, but I think I made a pretty fair point. Disney Deja Vu is a thing.

Have a magical day!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Day 414: Excitement

I'm currently wondering if someone should take my phone away from me.

Like, seriously, today has been very interesting.

It started off with me waking up in my usual Tuesday fashion: an hour later than normal to Charley's Girl o my phone...just a great way to start the day. I'm sick, so I debated if I was well enough to go to my one class of the day...and decided I was. So I got dressed, filled my mug with Orange Juice to go and headed out.

Then, at lunch, I decided that I may have an ear infection, so I called my mom and she made a doctor's appointment...which I went to an hour later. I also worked on my SECRET PROJECT in there..and it's out of my hands now. We have nothing to do but wait. Sigh.

Anyways, I DO have a minor ear and sinus infection (meaning I must take my medication for the next ten days...but if it will make my ear stop hurting I'm all cool with it). And then I returned to the music building and waited for wind ensemble. But today was the press release of the Midseason premiere of Once Upon A Time...meaning TWITTER IS NOW FILLED WITH WONDERFUL (and not so wonderful) THINGS!

Oh yes...there are promotional pictures EVERYWHERE, and I am excited about some of the stuff happening and very UNEXCITED about some of the stuff that is happening. That is all I can say...other than I am VERY excited to see, basically, Hook versus the world. It's gonna be hilarious.

Either way, in the meantime, my mom also sent me this picture:

LET THIS BE A REMINDER THAT EXACTLY ONE MONTH FROM NOW I'LL BE AT WALT DISNEY WORLD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (Am I excited enough?) 

March is gonna be SPECTACULAR.

Have a magical day!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Day 413: Jack Sparrow

While working on my secret project the other day, I decided that since Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl is on Netflix, that I would watch it. I haven't watched them all in a while, so it worked out pretty well. I mean, it's kind of hard to watch a movie anywhere around here without getting interrupted, but it works out ok. So then tonight I ended up watching the second one: Dead Man's Chest. I think of the four this is the one I've watched the most though...funny since I think it's my least favorite.

So let's talk for a second about some of my favorite moments from Pirates of the Caribbean. I actually like the third one the best, so this will be kind of interesting, but we'll see.

I mean, first off, I think just the fact that it's Pirates of the Caribbean. It can't get much cooler than that. I actually said to Megan that if it weren't for my motion sickness, Pirate ships seem like a pretty cool place. I mean, they probably are really gross and disgusting, but that's ok. It still looks fun!

Secondly, Jack Sparrow is seriously great. Hilarious just all over the place.

Third...there is TOTALLY a parallel between Will & Elizabeth and Emma & Hook. In the first one, Elizabeth injures her hand, and Will helps her take care of it in a way VERY SIMILAR to how Hook helps Emma in Tallahassee. It's the same hand and everything. Parallel #1 for CaptainSwan. Woot woot!

Fourth, I LOVE how they threw in little hints to the attraction. I mean, whenever they sing Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me) I basically freak out. I know that in the third one there's some audio that is totally direct from the attraction that says "Dead Men Tell No Tales." And then how the attraction has little things inspired by the movie now. Like the mermaids from the fourth film. I LOVE THOSE THINGS. Like one of my favorite parts of the attraction  just because it makes me smile. =)

Other than that, I can't think of much off the top of my head. Catching up on blog posts (when you're sick) can be a difficult thing sometimes!

Have a magical day!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Day 412: The Little Match Girl

Fairy Tales update time!

We've been reading SO MANY of the classic fairy tales that we see in Disney, I mean A LOT of them. I'll have to binge watch a bunch of movies some time. Probably the weekend when Once Upon A Time comes back and I'm going literally insane. That will be the time to watch them all.

But in our Fairy Tale sightings competition, someone shared this video, which is Disney's version of Hans Christian Anderson's "The Little Match Girl." It's actually quite a sad fairy tale, but I'll let you watch it first:

This short was originally made for a third version of Fantasia titled Fantasia 2006. When they didn't make the film, they included this short on the most recent version (so 2006) of The Little Mermaid, which makes perfect since that original tale was ALSO written by Hans Christian Anderson. 

Either way, the story is about a little girl who is trying to sell matches in the middle of the cold winter, but no one wishes to buy them from her. In the original tale, she lives with an abusive father, and so she doesn't want to go home. Instead, she ends up in a small alley, using her matches to keep warm. Only it doesn't work, and eventually she dies. You can see this happening through the scenes with her grandmother. Those occur in the original story too. I mean, they're a little different. But either way, this short is overall very close to the tale by Anderson. Like really close. Great Job Disney! 

Have a magical day!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Day 411: Legally Blonde

Yesterday, since I'm spending the rest of the weekend at college for Winter Band Fest (two concerts for us), I went back to my High School to see their production of Legally Blonde. If I did mention it before, I went to the high school of my best friend's roommate to see it when they had their own production of it. It was honestly pretty awesome getting to see it twice by two different schools. Plus, I really do like the musical, so that just made it that much better.

Seriously though, Legally Blonde is great...especially the song Ireland. I just absolutely LOVE that song...hmm I wonder why though. Actually, in general, I just love Paulette. Her character is great. Plus, her dog in my high school's version was my band director's dog, Bru...whom I remember as a puppy and is seriously like my favorite dog. I just never get to see him, so that was really exciting. I mean, seriously:

What does this have to do with Disney? Not much I suppose...although "Ireland" DOES basically relate to Once...I mean, it's pretty obvious. Colin IS Irish, and there's a line where it talks about sailors, one of them named Liam. The first time I saw this I literally had to keep myself from laughing. It was hard. 

Other than that, great job to everyone involved in the Seymour High School Production of "Legally Blonde!" Super proud of all you! 

And now time for a side story that DOES have to do with Disney! This weekend we have two high school students staying in our dorm room for Winter Band Fest, and one of them said they love Disney and was like "I've been to Walt Disney World 5 times!" and my roommate just laughed and was like "CAN I TELL THEM!?!" so she did and the High Schooler Guesses like 7 and my roommate is just like "higher" and they guessed again, with 10 or something, and my roommate goes "24!" Only I forgot to mention to her that I actually miscounted and it's 23, not 24. So then we had a discussion about that. Haha...don't worry though, by the end of the year it will be 25! 

Have a magical day!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Day 410: Have a Valentine

Happy Valentine's Day everyone!

A year ago, surprisingly enough, I did NOT do a post on Valentine's Day itself (although I did mention it), but since it seems to be an actually really big thing (its just everywhere on Campus), I suppose I'll actually make a blog post about it.

In reality though, I just wanted to share some of my absolute favorite Valentine's people have come up with this year. Like seriously, these are great...

Villains seem to be a popular theme this year. I blame Hans. These first three are from Keith Lapinig, and then there are some directly from Disney...because they're awesome.

Or, if you prefer, we have THIS Hook, more Irish, less Waxed Mustache and Perm: 

And then we have these, directly from Oh My Disney. Jack Sparrow and Flynn Rider for the win. On a side note, my best friend sent me the second one (America) on Pinterest saying "A Tribute to all nations but mostly America, right? This is a thing!" It was a proud moment for Lizzie.

And so, I hope you laughed as some of these Valentines. I actually didn't send any out, because the week has just been super busy and I didn't have time to print any (although I did send the Hook one to someone). Megan gave us all Valentine's that said "Some people are worth melting for" though, and it was super adorable. Thanks Shovell! =)

Me? I spent my Valentine's Day the same way I always do, Han style...Solo!

Have a magical Valentine's Day!