Saturday, December 31, 2016

Day 1461: What's There to Say?

2016 was pretty much a terrible year for everyone it seems. If you look around for more than a few minutes on Twitter you'll know very quickly just how awful the last 12 months were for a lot of people. We've lost so many legends this year, we elected a new president that split the country in a brand new way, and in general, 2016 was a flop. Which means that 2017 can only be better, right? 

For me, 2016 was a year of change and learning. I started it in one of the darkest places I've ever been, struggling with who to trust, where I was going to live, and feeling betrayed by the people I once called my friends. Luckily, moving out and across campus into a different apartment was the start of something great in my life. I strengthened the relationships that remained, gained a new and wonderful roommate, found comfort and happiness with new friends, and really learned who I am and who I want to be. As the year went on, I took risks too. I ended up attending an international conference in the Twin Cities, drove all the way to Colorado and back, traveled to Walt Disney World by myself for the first time (and for another conference!), joined a new group on campus that I never believed I could be a part of, and really began to figure out what I want to do with the rest of my life once I leave the security of college. 

At the beginning of 2016, I made a resolution to, instead of taking on something new, focus on finding balance in my life that allows for growth. I honestly think I found that this year, although there's absolutely still room for improvement, and Everyday Disney is an example of that in itself. But even if I haven't quite figured out the full balance of time in my schedule, I feel like I've found balance in myself. The people I surround myself with now care about me for who I am and definitely don't ask me to change. I don't feel as though I'm split into multiple parts the same way I was last year, and most importantly, I feel confident in what I am capable of. 

Normally at this point in the end of the year blog post I'd go on some ramble about how many words I wrote this year, but since a good portion of the year has yet to be completed, that seems sort of irrelevant, so perhaps we'll save that for a later date. For now, we'll just keep steaming ahead into 2017 and new adventures, because something tells me that this next year could be one of the most interesting yet. 

Have a magical day!

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Day 1459: Keep on Singing

I can't believe that this is the second of these posts I'll be writing this week. 

I don't think I realized how much I needed Debbie Reynolds until the first time I watched Singin' in the Rain. Prior to a few years ago, I guess I hadn't really paid any attention to the film that would, quite literally, change my life. And then one fateful day while riding The Great Movie Ride, I made a decision to watch some of the old films featured in the attraction. Now I'm on a personal mission to watch all of the AFI Top 100 films and any others featured in the original Great Movie Ride Film (so the one previous to what's there now), but that's kind of beside the point. 

When I did watch Singin' in the Rain for the first time, I was absolutely enchanted. There's no other way to describe it. The music, the color, the characters, the dancing, everything. What was once just some movie about singing in the rain somehow rose above all the others, and at some point, it became my all time favorite movie. I'm still not entirely sure when that happened. 

But Singin' in the Rain did so much more than become my favorite movie. I once heard a story about how Gene Kelly once insulted Debbie for not being able to dance, because prior to filming she had next to no dance experience. You'd never know with the way she performs on screen, and that idea alone helped give me the courage to audition for Knights on Broadway. I figured that if Debbie had no dance experience and could accomplish something like Singin' in the Rain, I could accomplish something like being a member of Knights on Broadway, where I too had to do a bit of dancing, so you'd better bet that every second on stage I was channeling my inner Debbie Reynolds. 

Singin' in the Rain was the very first movie I put in the box to bring to college. When my brother complained about me taking it, I immediately ordered him a copy of his own to keep at home so we'd never be without the film. 

At some point in high school, I learned every last word of the film, and I can still remember dancing around the band room on one of my last days there while Debbie and Gene mirrored us on the giant screen. 

To this day, Singin' in the Rain is my cure for even the worst day. My friends all know this, and haven't hesitated to put it on or play or sing one of the songs just to make my smile. 

The night I became an official member of Knights on Broadway we had a discussion at dinner about our favorite musicals and what role we'd most like to play - I said without hesitation Singin' in the Rain and Kathy Selden. 

But this goes far beyond Singin' in the Rain. Where Carrie was my courage and my commitment to be the person I want to be, Debbie was my inspiration. These two wonderful women encouraged me to reach for the stars, take risks, and remind myself that we're all a work in progress. We can only start from where we are right now, and if that starting place is one without Debbie and Carrie, then we'll just have to keep going and strive to uphold the legacy that they so deserve. 

It seems almost redundant now to say that my thoughts and prayers are with the family, but they are, especially with Billie. I can't even imagine what this feels like for her, but I do know that Debbie and Carrie are together again, the way they always wanted to be. 

Although something tells me that Carrie is cursing her mother for stealing her thunder. 

We'll miss you both, forever and always. Keep singing and dancing, even from the stars. 

Have a magical day! 

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Day 1458: Photo Spot Favorites

Disney World is a absolutely one of the best places in the world to explore photography, and so many of us do. My family has been taking pictures of Walt Disney World since...well, pretty much forever...and I've picked up on the habit. Usually you'll find me with a video camera in my hand, but I'm constantly taking pictures on my phone, and on occasion, you'll find me borrowing one of my parents' cameras as well. Plus, I love the Disney Instagram community, which has really only increased my love of photography over the past few years. 

That being said, I couldn't help but think back recently to a challenge I did in 2013. Inspired by several lists I'd seen on the internet of "Must Take Disney World Photos," I compiled a list of over 100 pictures to take on my trip in July of 2013, and so the Official July 2013 Disney Challenge began. After pinning more than a few Disney World pictures on Pinterest over the past week, I also realized that something like this would be sort of fun to do again...with a twist. 

The lists I compiled for 2013 were based on internet lists of a similar fashion, but they're all really stereotypical. We all take pictures of the castle and Spaceship Earth and the list goes on, but there are some pictures out there just waiting to be found. Take the Purple Wall for instance, which has literally been at Magic Kingdom for years but just recently (and suddenly) became an must-see for most Disney Instagrammers. Plus, I'm a big fan of really exploring the nooks and crannies of Walt Disney World - and finding the little spots that we never knew existed, so a new photo challenge seems like a great idea. 

Which is where all of my followers come in. Similar to what I did in May with my choose my adventure idea (and that video is slowly coming!), I figure the best way to find the best spots is to ask the best people I know! So in the comments below or through a tweet or something, let me know a few of the photo spots I should check out on my upcoming trip! Give me a challenging idea for how or where to take a picture (although remember that it must, in some way, be possible. I'm not about to climb to the top of Spaceship Earth, no matter how fun that sounds). Give me a suggestion for that one picture you always have to take, or one that you always forget to take! And just to make things easier, here's a Google Form you can fill out with your suggestion:

I'm pretty excited to see what you all come up with, and while I'm in Florida be sure to follow along on my Instagram to see some of the pictures! 

Have a magical day!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Day 1457: Carrie

This is the kind of blog post that everyone dreads writing. 

I remember my Dad telling me once that there are certain moments in history where you just remember where you were and what you were doing - the assassination of JFK, the Moon Landing, 9/11, and so on and so forth. I didn't really understand what he meant until the day that Robin Williams died, and I can still recall every part of that day, where I checked my phone to find one of my inspirations gone. I remember the way the sun was setting, I remember the way my room was arranged, and I certainly remember the way I felt. 

Today will be another one of those days. 

I was in the middle of getting my haircut, barely a minute or two into it actually, when Frank texted me. I didn't check my phone, despite the fact that it was absolutely blowing up and vibrating every two seconds. When I did finally check my phone on my way out the door, happily sporting a new hairstyle, I was hit with the news and my face fell. 

It's taken me a good portion of the rest of the day to figure out what I really want to say about this. As I walked around the mall, filled with people taking advantage of post-Christmas sales, I couldn't help but wonder if anyone around me felt the same way I did. One glance at Twitter and it was almost like Alderaan blew up all over again, but for the most part, those around me seemed alright. They didn't seem sad, they didn't seem heartbroken, they seemed fine, and thus the shoppers became an instant reminder that, even in the face of death, life does go on. 

Carrie Fisher was, without a doubt, my first female idol. Previous to watching Star Wars, I honestly can't recall any other icon having such an impact on me. I remember just having to read her book, and actively searching it out from the library. I remember reading everything I possibly could about her life, and being pretty astonished to realize somewhere along the line that Debbie Reynolds, another of my favorite actresses, was her mother. She was, in every way, one of the most incredible, strong women in Hollywood and the world, and she taught me so much about strength and, quite literally, not taking crap from anyone. Through the pages of her book, she taught me about the seriousness of mental illness, and supplied the foundation for me to reach out to my friends struggling with it. Carrie helped me to understand that I can't resent the people who have hurt me over the years, because, and this is one of my favorite quotes, "Resentment is like drinking a poison and waiting for the other person to die." And above all else, for years, I wanted to be Princess Leia. I wanted to be strong and confident and sassy all at the same time, and you know, I think a part of me has gotten there thanks to her. 

Which is why this hurts so much. I never met Carrie, and I probably wouldn't have even if she lived past today, but that doesn't diminish what she's inspired me to do. I'm a better person because of Carrie. I'm more sure of myself, more confident in what I want, and absolutely positive that nothing in this world will ever hold me back, even if some mysterious space station comes and blows up my planet. 

My thoughts and prayers are with Billie, Debbie, and all of Carrie's family and friends.

And to Carrie - We'll Miss You. 

Have a magical day!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Day 1451: Out of Touch

I must say that this semester has been an absolute whirlwind. With five classes, six ensembles, three jobs, three honor society presidencies, volunteer work, Bible study, homework, writing for The Odyssey Online, practicing, and time with family and friends, I've been lucky to eat two meals a day and sleep more than five or six hours. That being said, it's probably pretty obvious that Everyday Disney is a bit behind. It's not for lack of thought, but simply lack of time and energy to write anything more than I had to. Two of my classes were English courses, meaning they were writing intensive, and that's just scratching the surface. 

But to be honest, I've missed writing for this blog. I've fallen drastically behind in everything Disney related actually, and it almost feels like something's missing. I've seen the movies, which will have reviews up soon, and I've definitely been planning here and there for my upcoming trip in January, but overall, I'm behind. Even when I'm not actively writing for the blog, I'm usually going through the Disney news in my feed, but I haven't even done that. 

Which would be why I'm spending an obnoxious amount of time going way back through my feed trying desperately to figure out what I've missed over the past few months. Aside from the big news like the announcement of the Epcot International Festival of the Arts, the premieres of Rogue One and Moana, and the good old Christmas at Disney Announcements, what's really been going on? 

I hate feeling out of touch, and right now, that's where I am. But the good news is that the semester is over, and now I have the rest of the year and into next year to catch things back up around here. Whether or not Everyday Disney will be back to 100% before the end of the year, I'm not too sure, but it will be soon, and as we head into the new year, and the fifth year of Everyday Disney, I'm going to turn back to my roots, because now that I have my life somewhat figured out and back on track, I think it's about time to return to the blog, because I've missed it, and I've missed talking to all of you! 

Get ready for lots of updates here at Everyday Disney and on my YouTube channel, where new vlogs will be appearing soon! 

Have a magical day!

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Day 1450: KOB

Yep, that's me you see in the above picture, and yes, I'm singing. Honestly I don't think I believe it yet either, even though I just completed my first ever six show run with the St. Norbert College Knights on Broadway. 

A year ago, almost to the day (December 2015 was a big month for me in the change and important life event department), I became the newest KOGroupie. Before last year's show, I was sort of in a bad place. With emotions running high from roommate difficulties, I'd spent the week studying for finals and commuting to school, and by Friday I really needed a break. Earlier that day, one of the members of KOB happened to instruct me on exactly where to sit for the show that night. I did as he told me, and part way through the show it led to a (not-so) spontaneous dance that literally made my entire week so much better. For those couple of minutes, I forgot all about my roommates and the problems we'd been having, and I was happier than I'd been in quite some time. I left that show wanting to see more, and went from the average fan of Knights on Broadway to their biggest fan. 

My love of the student group only grew in the following months, all leading up to August when I was watching The Sound of Music in my living room and decided that maybe I wanted to audition for the group. After all, audition information had just been posted, and I had a few weeks to really figure things out. After talking it over with a few of my friends, I ended up going in and talking to the director and soon found myself the newest member of Knights on Broadway (after an audition and callbacks, of course). 

The rest is a story from another blog post, but now that we've ended our Christmas show, I'm so thankful I decided to audition. It was a huge step for me, especially considering the fact that I haven't really been in a vocal group since middle school. My singing has extended little beyond my car and my church for the past 8 years, so this was all entirely new for me. 

But I loved every last second of it. Over the past year, I've struggled with finding where I belong. My friends have changed more than a few times, I've moved several times, traveled all over the country, and gotten drastically behind in blog posts and YouTube videos, but as I was singing a mash up of "Silent Night," "O Holy Night," and "Hallelujah" with KOB this past weekend, I finally felt like I belong. These people don't force me to be anything I'm not, and quite honestly, I've never been more confident in who I am. I've found a new familiarity with the stage that I've never had before, was reminded why I love music so much, was encouraged to look past obstacles and pursue what I really want, and found myself a part of a new family that I wouldn't trade for anything. 

Auditioning for Knights on Broadway is absolutely, without a doubt in my mind, the best thing I've ever done in college. I've never felt more at home, and I honestly don't think I've ever been happier. This group, which I once thought I'd never be a part of in my wildest dreams, has given me more than I could ever ask for, and I can't wait for the new adventures we'll have in the spring. 

Which, may I add, includes a little trip to Florida, and perhaps, a dash of Disney. 

Have a magical day!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Day 1445: Rogue One

Just a warning - There may be spoilers in this post for Star Wars: Rogue One! 

For the second year in a row, I caught the newest Star Wars movie on opening night, almost as soon as I possibly could, and let me just was sort of weird watching a movie where you knew the whole time exactly how it was going to end. For the entire two hours, you just sat there knowing that the characters you were getting attached two were ultimately going to die, and then for a moment in the middle you forgot...and then remembered all over again. 

But that says something extremely important about this film, and it's the reason I actually loved it far more than I expected to. We knew what this film was about - the rebels that stole the plans for the Death Star and gave their lives doing so. We knew they were going to die at the end, and yet we were able to grow attached to them the same way we do any of the other characters. That's some intense storytelling, because in the case of the other main characters, we've had or will have much longer to grow attached to them. Darth Vader, for instance, has been around from the beginning, and we've had how many films to enjoy him as a character, but for the others in Rogue One, this is it. There's no Episode VIII, no Rogue One II, no further story. 

They do, however, play such an important role in the overall plot of the Star Wars Universe. Rogue One was, at one point not too long ago, was sort of just legend. We didn't really know what was going on or what had happened in that 20 year or so span between Episodes III and IV, and now there's a solidified story that helps complete things. Overall though, let's talk about the ups and downs of this film: 

What I Loved: As previously mentioned, the characters. I'm a particular fan of K-2SO, who I definitely refer to as "C-3PO but better," and really I thought it was a great play on our favorite droid, especially with all the statistics and such. I couldn't help but think of "The chances of successfully navigating this asteroid field..." in the middle of the movie. And that's just it - Rogue One fits in perfectly with the other films, and that makes it feel cohesive and real, even if it's a standalone film that isn't a part of the main arc. I was also a HUGE fan of the little references to the original films that were stuck in there, which consistently made me chuckle throughout the film. 

What I Liked: I honestly thought the casting in general for this film was great, especially for the characters that they brought back from the original trilogy (aka Tarkin and others). It brought a sense of connection to A New Hope, and while there was always this sense that "this isn't real" because they're not exactly the characters we see in the other films, I for one got chills when each of the original characters appeared on screen - especially Vader. 

What I Didn't Like As Much: As much as I really loved this film, there was still something about it that I couldn't quite get behind. Perhaps it was the fact that, after last year's episode that took me on a complete emotional rollercoaster, this felt like it was lacking, at least for me in the excitement department. That's not to say that this isn't a phenomenal movie though, because it absolutely it. 

In the end, I'd say that Rogue One ranks somewhere like this in my Star Wars line up: V, IV, VII, Rogue One, VI, III, I, II. I'm always a little hesitant as to where to put Episode VI though, because I adore the film and it's one of the ones I watch the most, but overall, I think, in terms of the film overall, that's where I'd put it, almost smack dab in the middle and, yes, underneath Episode VII, which I know is a hot debate right now. Why that is I'm still not entirely sure, but after I get a chance to see Rogue One again, I'll let you know! 

What did you think of Rogue One? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below! 

Have a magical day!

Monday, November 21, 2016

Day 1421: Cars 3

I still remember the first time I saw Cars in theaters, when my family loved it so much that we just had to see it again...and then one more time before it even left cinemas. I don't particularly remember seeing Cars 2, but I know that we did at some point, and I have more than a few memories of watching both films in my own home. If you've been reading Everyday Disney for a while, you'll also know just how much I love and adore Carsland out at Disney California Adventure. If I could live anywhere in the world, aside from inside Spaceship Earth, it'd be Carsland. Actually, I think I ate at Flo's three times in the five days we were in the parks. Or was it four times? 

Either way, Cars quickly rose to, and has stayed at, the top of my favorite Disney-Pixar movies list. I can't quite pinpoint why, but there's just something about this story that hit me and has stuck with me unlike any of the others. Maybe it's the fact that I love driving, and I really loved my road trip this past summer, which, for a while, took us on Route 66. Perhaps it's that dream I have of driving the Route all together, or it might be the beautiful animation and story that should have won it an Oscar. I'm still a bit salty about that one. 

I think, ultimately, the thing I loved most about Cars was that it's a movie without a central villain. Yes, Chick Hicks is there throughout the film, but he's not really...evil, at least not in the same way as Captain Hook or Cruella de Vil terrorize their own films. Cars was, and is, a personal journey for Lightning, and he becomes his own villain. I think that was a really important lesson for me back in the day - that sometimes we want to blame others when the fault really lies with us. We want to blame Doc and Mater and Sally and Mac and yes, even good old Bessie, for our problems, but we can be the villains of our own story too. Lightning is so focused on his racing career and coming out on top that he neglects those around him, getting caught up in his own ambitions without ever realizing the toll they'll take on others. And when he gets stuck in Radiator Springs, it wasn't truly the fault of Mac - it was Lightning, and as he begins to slow down and truly open his eyes, he realizes that there's more to life than ambition. 

As someone who regularly gets caught up in her own ambition and needs to consciously remind herself to slow down and enjoy life a bit more, Cars made all the difference for me. I know I felt that Cars 2 was lacking that same theme, and a physical villain appeared, so while it's still a spectacular movie, I think it lost some of the same charm for me. Which is why I'm actually thrilled by this first teaser trailer for Cars 3. Like with Toy Story, it seems that we'll be coming full circle with Lightning's story. He was, at one point, the young hotshot who had so much to learn, and it was Doc that taught him new tricks. Now, Lightning's a permanent fixture in the racing world, but as we learned in the original film, fame and good luck doesn't last forever. Lightning was once his own villain, and I'm really hoping that we'll see that again in a new way! 

Let me know what your thoughts on the new trailer are in the comments below! 

Have a magical day!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Day 1409: We Are Divided

I won't be the first to admit that the 2016 Election didn't go the way I wanted it to, and I certainly won't be the last, but what hurts more than waking up to a President-Elect that I most certainly didn't want to be anywhere near the Oval Office is seeing the hatred and concern in those around me. 

On one hand, this could go down as one of the worst days in American History - not because we elected Donald Trump as our next President, but because of the violence and terror filling cities across the country. There are stories of those already involved in hate crimes and so many are discussing moments of fear as they face oppression. Now, I'm not usually one for politics, at least not in a public setting, but not even I can keep quiet this time. Our country is facing immense change, whether it be for better or worse. But maybe change is what we need. Maybe things need to be different, but in what way? 

Whenever I'm feeling lost, I sort of settle in with my IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth soundtrack and think back to Epcot, partially because it's where I feel safest and most like myself, and partially because of the ideals that created it. Epcot is about experimenting and looking ahead, all while celebrating our heritage and history. Within its walls, there's a delicate balance between the past, present, and future, and when it all boils down, Epcot is about acceptance. 

It's about recognizing and accepting our differences. It's about celebrating the qualities that make us unique and connecting through what we have in common, and what we don't. Epcot is about community, an element that is expressed best through the countries of World Showcase, filled with individual from all over the world, coming together as one, and it's not even just the cast members. Think of the table sharing tradition at the Biergarten. We can come from all over the country and world and sit down at the same table and share a meal like a family. That's special. That's what it's all about. That's what it should be about. 

And at the end of the day, we return to World Showcase Lagoon to remind ourselves how we got here, and rejoice in the idea that, regardless of what happens, no matter who will step into the Oval Office in January, we go on. Now is the time for us to stand together and take on the future, hand in hand, perhaps more than ever, and retain the idea that we will get through it together. That may be easy for me to say, especially as a privileged member of society, but we've made it this far, through far worse trials than this, and I have faith that we will get through this. We have to believe that. 

All this being said, I want to take a moment to share that if you need to talk, I am here to listen. If you feel unsafe, I am here to reassure and protect you. If you need help, I am here, and I will help you. If you feel oppressed, I am here, and I will fight for you. I will do whatever I can to be there for you, and that goes for everyone everyday, even after the next four years expire. 

Hang tight America. We may be in for some bumpy seas, but I foresee the American Adventure to continue for a long, long time. 

Have a magical day!

Friday, October 28, 2016

Day 1397: Perry

It's time again for another round of "That Thing in Class That Mysteriously Related to Disney!" 

This time it was in Intro to Computer Programming, which I'm taking to fulfill my last general education requirement...the second of which (math), I was supposed to complete by the end of my second year of undergrad. I'm a first semester senior right now, so you can tell how well that worked out for me. 

Regardless, throughout the semester in addition to doing labs and attending lectures, we're expected to create several programs that will run on the computer. We're usually given instructions and basic code to help us start writing our program, but ultimately a lot of it is up to us, and I'm particularly excited about this next one! 

For our fourth program, we're creating a sort of basic adventure game. Think sort of like the really simple old ones where you have to run into certain objects and avoid others to gain points. You'll lose lives if you hit the bad things, and when you run out, the game is over. Pretty simple, right? The rest of the program, including the theme and story, is up to us, and our professor showed us several examples in class today. The first one? Perry The Platypus. 

As the game started up, there was some pretty intense Perry The Platypus music, and the game was run where you had to run into Doofenshmirtz to stop him while avoiding Phineas and Ferb. It actually seemed like a lot of fun, and I quickly snapped a picture to prove that yes, indeed, I'm not lying. 

What I'll be doing for my own game has yet to be determined, but expect it to have at least something to do with Disney. I figure something with the parks could be especially fun, but that might include a lot of coding if I did it the way I want to. So perhaps The Lion King will come into play, or another classic Disney movie. I don't know about you, but I played a lot of those simple kinds of games on the computer as a kid, and this seems like the perfect chance to relive some of those memories! 

If you have any suggestions as to what kind of game I should do, leave them in the comments below! 

Have a magical day!

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Day 1382: Camera Flash

At the conclusion of each trip, I'm frequently found going through the pictures from the various cameras that went with us, and eventually I share some of my favorite shots here on Everyday Disney. It's always interesting to see the differences in style, topic, and view between my parents, brother, and I, but ultimately we just all love photography! So here are some of my favorites from our October trip to Walt Disney World:

Personally, I'm a huge fan of candid photos, some of which you can see above. There's certainly a difference between a candid and a posed photo, as the former really gives you a better idea of what's really going on. It's real life, and a look at what really happens behind the scenes on Disney trips, because believe it or not, there's stuff I cut out of even my vlogs. 

Plus, pictures are just plain fun to look at down the road! 

Have a magical day!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Day 1381: Paperman

Writing fiction can be pretty difficult, especially when you're writing a lot of it all at once for a class. But occasionally, things slip into our writing without us even knowing it. For instance, a piece by one of my friends reminded me of Mulan 2 the other day, and we've had more than a few horror movie moments. 

But for one piece of fiction written for my class, I could only think of one thing: Paperman

The short written by one of my classmates instantly reminded me of the short by Walt Disney Pictures. If you haven't seen it or just wanted to watch it again, you can watch it below, and you'll get the basic idea of the story she wrote.

Now, she didn't write Paperman specifically, and actually, her short was no where near close to what actually happens in the film, but it certainly was a reminder of it. And in fact, another short, The Blue Umbrella also came to mind for much of my class as we read through her story. And really, it's kind of fun when that happens, because it shows just how realistic these ideas coming from Disney and Pixar are, and it also showcases the idea that we too could become writers like that. 

And that's a pretty amazing idea. 

Have a magical day!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Day 1380: How Time Flies

It feels like just the other day I was starting the semester, or even better, just the other day that I was in Florida for National Youth Event at the end of July, and here I am now having completed another trip last week. 

But the world (and work) must go on, and I've found myself once again falling victim to the lapse in blog posts, which is a constant strain since I'm always aware of the fact that even when my homework is done and the latest vlog is edited, my music is practiced and plants watered, there's still something I need to be doing. Problem is, I'm usually too tired to sit down and write one blog post, much less the 50+ that are now missing from Everyday Disney

It probably doesn't help that I've been writing other places too, and most of my free time these days, what little there is, is spent sleeping, actually eating a meal, or with my friends. It's a constant balance, but at the same time, being at Disney last week reminded me that I sort of miss writing for this blog. It was easy, exciting, and while occasionally a lot of work, still just as, if not more fulfilling than some of the other work I do during the week. 

This does put me in sort of a pickle though. I hate not having my blog up to date, but the thought of postponing work on Everyday Disney until next January or later seems appalling, especially with the prospect of applying for the Disney College Program in a few short months. And truth be told, Everyday Disney got me through my last major transition in life - high school into college - and moving ahead without it feels absolutely wrong. 

So I'm exploring new ideas about what to blog about, sort of like the scientists in Living With the Land are exploring new ways to grow crops, or Walt Disney Imagineering is exploring new attraction ideas for the parks. There are a lot of days to fill, but luckily there's one thing we aren't running short on, and that's Disney. 

Dual blog posts begin tomorrow, with a current post and a make-up post every day of the week! 

Have a magical day!  

Monday, October 10, 2016

Day 1379: Food & Wine - Part 4

The 2016 Epcot International Food and Wine Festival technically isn't my first. My family attended one many years ago, but I don't remember much of it, and there's no arguing that this festival can get a lot more fun once you're 21 years old. That's actually part of the reason my family went this year, because for me, Food and Wine really does mean Food and wine

Having turned 21 in July, I had my sights set on a few alcoholic beverages across the festival, although we only got to try a couple of them due to time (and the intense heat that made you want to drink nothing but water), but they were worth it and definitely got me even more excited about future festivals where I'll be able to try more! 

First, in Ireland we tried the Bunratty Meade Honey Wine, which I liked. I use a notorious amount of honey back home, whether it be in tea or in dishes I make, so having it in a wine was really a different experience!

We also tried the Neige Premiere "Apple Ice Wine" from Quebec at the Canada stand, which sort of just tasted like fancy apple juice to me, but my mom liked. It's not that I disliked it, but more than it was a bit too sweet for my taste. Still, I'd say it's a great wine for someone who hasn't tried much wine before! 

Finally, we made a stop at the Craft Beers stand in the Odyssey Center for the one beer I really wanted to try at the festival - the Two Henrys Blueberry Vanilla American Wheat Ale, which is made in Plant City, FL. None of us are huge beer fans, but I actually really liked this ale, which definitely had a hint of blueberry! 

Otherwise, that was about it. I was finally going to try the dole whip with rum, but the machine was down when I went to go grab one, so that'll just have to wait for another day. Just a bit of a reminder though - as possible as it is to try all the different dishes at the food and wine festival, always remember to drink responsibly. It's impossible to try everything in one day, so split it up, even if the serving sizes are small. It'll make your trip around the showcase easier and you'll feel better because of it! 

Have a magical day!