On the morning of February 22nd, I woke up bright and early at 2:45 am. I thought about texting my brother Happy Birthday, but I suspected he wouldn’t appreciate the super early morning wishes! So instead I got into my costume for the Princess Half Marathon. I had done Princess Anna and will soon be featuring a post about how I put my costume together. I was down to wait for the bus by 3:15. It was almost time for my very first half marathon!
Luckily, it was warmer than it had been for the Enchanted 10k the previous morning. I still had my throwaway jacket, but I felt good with that and didn’t need anything else. I hung out with my friends for a little bit before we headed toward the corrals. I started in I, along with the lovely Brittany – who you might recognize if you’re a fan of fitness pages, as she is the Brittany behind the popular Brittany Eats Clean page! I hadn’t really gotten to know her too much until this moment, but she was super sweet and I was so thankful to have someone to talk to and pass the time with before we started.
And then we started somewhere right before 6am I believe. We ran out away from Epcot and toward the Magic Kingdom and the ticket and transportation center. The half marathon had way more entertainment than the 10k – even where there weren’t characters there was something going on, like a band, cheerleaders, or a DJ! And there were tons of characters. The lines in the first half were pretty long so I didn’t stop, and in the second half I just wanted to finish so I didn’t really stop then either. I did try to keep track of who all was out there though (list at the end of this post!)
My husband was going to be at the ticket and transportation center to spectate, but it seems he and the other husbands got a little behind schedule and I was texting him, worried that I might beat him there. So I stopped for a couple of photos – one with the Richard Petty race car, and one in a throne they had set up near where the villains were doing their meet and greets. And it worked out because I did manage to make it to the meeting area right around the same time as my husband! I ran on, and he jumped on the monorail to get a spot in Magic Kingdom to see me again.
Let me start out by saying this movie was much better than I expected it to be. If I’m being totally honest, I went into it not 100% thrilled that Disney was just doing another live action re-make – especially after my disappointment with Maleficent. Then we saw a “sneak preview” of the movie at Hollywood Studios, where they showed the complete fairy godmother scene, and I’ll be honest: I didn’t think it was very good. Luckily, that scene was the lowest part of the movie for me, and the rest turned out quite well.
The animated movie spends a lot of time on the antics of the mice, and luckily they play a much smaller role here. In order to make this a full length movie, we delve more into Cinderella’s back story, which pays off. We meet her mother and father and see her life as a child, when things were happy. It develops more of a connection with her, and also shows us more of the reasons why she fell into the position that she did in the household. We also have Cinderella and the Prince meet initially before the ball, in a very sweet and captivating scene. It’s the basic story of Cinderella with some extra stuff thrown in, with a nice pace and without adding too much unnecessary extras.
It’s my favorite mail day – Stitch Fix! Stitch Fix is a subscription box service that has you fill out a style profile survey, and then they send you 5 clothing items to try on – you decide what to keep and what to send back! I had Julie as my stylist again, and this time around I requested shirts and cardigans for work. Here’s what I got:
Pixley Abrianna waffle knit cardigan – $48.00
Out of the box I really loved this – mostly for the color. It’s a great color and different than anything else that I have. When I tried it on I really liked the style too – it has these “sort of” pockets that are created by the way the sweater drapes. The only drawback was the fact that the sleeves were just a little tight. Ultimately though I loved it and decided I would put up with the tight sleeves! Verdict: Kept.
One of my big goals as a Disney fan was to become an annual passholder – not only do you get certain perks and privileges, it also means that you’ll be visiting often enough to warrant getting a pass, which is always a good thing! Coming from Pennsylvania I never really thought I would do it, but I’ve been able to work out enough trips that I’ve taken with points, shared rooms, etc. to make it financially feasible. My first time as an AP holder was from February 2013-February 2014. My second time I’m in the middle of right now, from October 2014-October 2015.
I really used my AP to the fullest in 2013, with five Disney trips. I got to attend two Disney weddings that year, a DisBrides meet up with some of my best friends, a trip with my parents who hadn’t been to the World in almost 20 years, and a trip with my friend from Norway who was visiting Disney for the first time. This time around I’ve used my AP for two trips so far – the Tower of Terror 10 miler and the Princess Half Marathon, and I’ll be back again at the end of April for a trip with friends.
Highlights: Overall it is a really excellent movie. I find it to be quite enjoyable, funny, and emotionally touching. One of the nice things about this movie is that it keeps a good pace. They go on lots of adventures but it doesn’t feel too rushed, and it never really drags at all.
Low points: The only slight downfall to the movie is Peter himself, because it can be hard to like a character that is so selfish and immature. However, if we can accept the fact that we aren’t necessarily supposed to like the main character, even though the kids in the movie adore him, it adds a really interesting dynamic and brings out an important message that Barrie wanted to convey in his original book/play. Plus, Tink is just a… “witch.”
Music: I think Peter Pan‘s got a lot of great songs – with the exception of Fantasia, which was focused on music, I might even say that Peter Pan is one of the few “early” Disney films to have a really memorable and overall good soundtrack. “The Second Star to the Right” and “You Can Fly!” are both really good numbers. There are also some good character songs, with “A Pirate’s Life” for the pirates and “What Makes the Red Man Red?” for the Indians. “Your Mother and Mine” is a beautiful lullaby, if not a little boring. And the crocodile’s tune is both fun and catchy.
I got my first Stridebox in February, which is a subscription box designed especially for runners. It can include all sorts of goodies and equipment, and I was looking forward to seeing what was inside! The cost is $15 a month.
I think the “biggest” item in this box was a pair of touchscreen gloves. I will say that these weren’t super useful to me. My husband had just gotten me really nice touchscreen gloves for Christmas that are wonderful. I wore these a couple of times, including for a 10k race. They are fine, your typical cheap glove material, but the touchscreen aspect didn’t work that well. Kind of a dud for me.
Also included was a Picky Bar, which is an energy bar. I got the flavor Cookie Doughphness. I was a bit surprised at the texture – I expected it to be like a clif bar but it was way more chewy. However, it tasted really good! And I can be very picky (no pun intended!) with this sort of thing.
I use the term “making” here a little liberally as I only actually made from scratch one part of my costume for the Enchanted 10k – the rest of more of how I put the costume together from various pieces I had or bought. But I was really happy with how it turned out, so I wanted to share what I did to make my Snow White running costume!
The shirt I used is from one of my favorite running shirt companies, Raw Threads. They make shirts inspired by tons of Disney characters. I actually got this one as part of a mystery pack that I had ordered, which is when you can get three shirts at a discounted bundle price, but you don’t know which ones you’ll get. Receiving this one is actually what inspired me to do a Snow White costume! Even if you don’t want to do something like this, any blue running shirt will work for the costume. I just like the bow with the apple because it adds a bit extra “Snow White” to it.
Ipsy is a make-up bag subscription with 5 items per month for $10. You also get a bag every month.
Cargo Cosmetics mini lip gloss (~$8.00)- Lip gloss is probably the #1 thing I like to get, and while this one was fine consistency-wise, I didn’t love the color. It was way too pale a pink and just looked bad with my pale skin.
Composition No. 1 Parfum Oil ($15.00)- this is the teeniest tiniest sample because this stuff is expensive, but I thought it smelled really nice – kind of sweet and strong.
Luxie Beauty Large Angled Face Brush ($8.00) – this is great for putting on blush. It’s amazing what a difference a good brush can make, and I’m happy to add this to my collection!
ModelCo Blush ($18) – This is my first blush from Ipsy, so that was nice . It’s a good shade and I’m pleased! I got the peach bellini shade. It will work well for my theater shows.
Tini Beauty Eye Shadow ($5.00) – This is nice, but the only issue is I’ve gotten something pretty much the same (neutral colored eye shadow) in every Ipsy bag. So I didn’t really need this, though it’s something I’ll use eventually.
All in all I came up with a value of $54, which is by far the best for any Ipsy bag I’ve gotten. The bag itself is cute, and every item in it is something that I would like and use (if only the lip gloss was a better shade!). This month was a win for sure!
February was an exciting Disney month for me as I got to spend a week down in the world! Our trip was packed with races, great food, fun times, and even a trip over to Universal to visit Diagon Alley. Expect to see lots of blog posts about various things from my trip. Big Hero 6 also just recently came out on DVD (I still have to pick up my copy!). And finally, we are gearing up for the Flower and Garden festival, which I will be attending in April!
Disney in your Day news
My Enchanted 10k recap is up on the blog, but there will be lots more to come from my week in Disney, including a recap of the Half Marathon, some dining reviews, how I made my running costumes, and more. Anything in particular you’d be curious to hear about? I’m also still blazing my way through that Disney bucket list and will continue to post updates on that! We are planning to go to Disneyland in September, so I may also be posting some planning stuff. Finally, I’m still making my way through the Disney movies – just finished Peter Pan so I’ll have my thoughts on that up shortly!
February 21st the second Enchanted 10k, and also my second time running it! We were up bright and early, and I got into my Snow White running costume that because of the cold temperatures now had leggings and running sleeves to it.
We got on the bus around 3:30, so that we could stand around in the cold for two hours. It was only in the low forties that morning! I had brought a throwaway sweatshirt but I was still freezing the entire time until I started running. There were 5 corrals, A-E, and I was in C. Last year the corrals started about 10 minutes apart, but this time it seemed to be even longer, about 12 minutes. I started at 5:55 am. I planned to take it easy since I was running the half marathon the next day.
Don’t get me wrong. My past visit to Disney World was a great time. I had a lot of fun. But I’ve never been a fan of the FastPasss Plus system, and I started to realize exactly why on this trip. That’s not to say that it’s not for everyone – I know it works really well for some people and they love it. But I’m not crazy about it, and here’s why.
FastPass Plus makes the stand-by lines longer.
This seems to be generally true. I don’t remember Pirates of the Caribbean ever having over a hour wait time except in extremely busy seasons. And especially in Epcot and Hollywood Studios, people are getting fastpasses for things they wouldn’t ordinarily because of the tier system, so they either ride them when they wouldn’t otherwise or they “waste” that fastpass by making it but not using it.
I can’t get fastpasses for all of my favorite rides because of the tier system.
In Hollywood Studios, I have to choose between Toy Story Mania and Rockin’ Roller Coaster. In Epcot, it’s between Soarin’ and Test Track. The only way I can ride both without super long waits is to get a fastpass for one, and go to the other first thing in the morning when the lines are short. I understand that Toy Story is so popular you used to have to get there in the morning anyway if you even wanted a fastpass, but most of the other major rides had fastpasses available at least until the afternoon.
This is a continuation of my series on other theme parks, for those times when you just can’t get to Disney but want to spend a day at a theme park. Kings Dominion, located in Doswell, Virginia, is one of the theme parks owned by Cedar Fair. It was a really nice park, and here are some of the things that we noticed!
I pointed out before that there is a difference between a amusement park and a theme park. Some of Cedar Fair’s other parks don’t have much themeing to them. My husband and I have been to Dorney Park a number of times because we live near it, and while it’s fun it doesn’t have that sort of charm to it. So we were surprised to see that Kings Dominion did! When you first come in you are on “International Street,” which is reminiscent of the Epcot World Showcase. There is also a Safari Village, with an Animal Kingdom feel, and “Old Virginia.” And for the kids, like most Cedar Fair parks, there is a Planet Snoopy section. Think Mickey-like themeing but with the Peanuts gang. We loved an attraction that was like Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger spin in set-up, but themed more like the Haunted Mansion.
Good thrill rides
We love roller coasters. While the ones here weren’t quite as impressive as the ones at Busch Gardens Williamsburg, there were still some that we enjoyed a lot. Volcano: The Blast Coaster was probably my favorite: it shoots you up into the air through a “volcano!” The Backlot Stunt Coaster was fun and reminded me of a slightly tamer, outside version of Rockin’ Roller Coaster. And the Dominator was a blast. There were a number of other coasters to try out too, but those were the highlights for us. For kids and families there are a number of more traditional amusement park rides. Nothing terribly unique like at Disney, but still a fun time.
I’m not sure why I decided the waffle sandwich was special enough to have its own item on the bucket list, but it did so here we go! I tried one of the waffle sandwiches at Sleepy Hollow, located in the Magic Kingdom, in April 2013. I went with the nutella and fruit waffle for lunch:
Maybe it doesn’t seem like a lunch food, but it sounded like a good lunch to me! This was better than I even imagined it would be. The waffle was great, it was crisp and delicious. But for me the fruit was the real highlight – all of the fruit was super fresh and full of flavor. It was incredibly messy to eat though – I definitely made a mess It was very filling too – it held me through til dinner 5 hours later and I didn’t get get a snack when the rest of my family did in the afternoon because I was still full from the waffle! For around $6 I think it’s a really good bargain for lunch too in WDW, or as a snack to share. Keep in mind that this one is really, really sweet, so if you want something more savory for lunch you might want to go with one of the other options.
My husband had the sweet and spicy chicken waffle sandwich:
The waffle was the same good quality, and he enjoyed the rest that was on it too. He mentioned that he really liked the level of spiciness – it stood out to him but not too much to be unbearably spicy. This one was quite messy too, and it was difficult to eat whether you tried to pick it up or used a knife and fork.
There is also a ham, prosciutto, and swiss waffle available, and during breakfast you can get a ham and cheese omelet waffle sandwich. Or if you’re just looking for a snack, you can get a waffle with cinnamon, waffle with strawberries and cream, or waffle with powdered sugar!
Have you tried any of the Waffles at Sleepy Hollow? Which one is your favorite?
And check out the other items on my Disney Bucket List:
When it comes to Disney, one of my favorite things is food. Whether it’s a quick snack or a fancy sit down meal, I love all that the parks have to offer. I religiously read the Disney Food Blog, and pin items I want to try on future visits. But I thought it might be easiest to have a place where I can compile all of the things I want to try! On these lists I’ve included items I have tried that I feel are “must try” for others, as well as ones that I haven’t tasted yet that I’m drooling just thinking about it! So without further ado, here are the items on my Disney “must eat” list:
Every month my friends over at Mouse on the Mind host a blog hop of “Kill, Refurb, Marry” – and this month’s topic is Disney Sidekicks! Here are my choices – what would you choose?
Kill – Cheshire Cat
To be fair, he is a cool character – I want to kill him more in the sense of, “gahh I hate you!” rather than “I wish you weren’t in this film.” He’s not necessarily a villain, but he’s a troublemaker, and he doesn’t seem to feel bad at all for Alice, even when she’s at her wit’s end and crying about home. He’ll always point her in the wrong direction. And I’m a cat lover, so he gives my cuddly creatures a bad name!
I had previously read Valentino’s other novel, “Fairest of All,” and I have to say I think I enjoyed this one even more. I was a little nervous to see what she would do with this story, as Beauty and the Beast is my favorite Disney movie, but I think it’s an interesting and entertaining take on the fairy tale.
Some people complain that the story has been changed “too much,” but to me that’s all part of this genre – I don’t know if it has an official name, but there are lots of these stories now that are twisted fairy tales, or fairy tales told from a different point of view, that sort of thing. And honestly, it’s the nature of fairy tales. Most of the Disney versions are already drastically different than the original fairy tales. And you can go into a library and read tons of different versions of Beauty and the Beast, each which have changed the story in their own way.
In this version, we get the story from the Beast’s point of view. Although we’re not given an exact age, we can suppose he’s a teenager old enough to be considering marriage at that time. He is portrayed as arrogant, selfish, and uncaring – much like his best friend (surprise!) Gaston. We learn about a couple of failed relationships that he went through and the events that led to the curse, as well as his falling out from society after he’s been cursed.
Wow, we’re only two weeks away. Even though four runs were on the agenda for this week, I only got in two. You’ll see why in a moment, but I felt it was smarter to rest up and recover rather than push myself too hard this close before the race. I’m really nervous now about the Half Marathon, and I’m just praying I’ll make it through!
On Monday I did one of my typical treadmill runs. Nothing really out of the ordinary here.
Wednesday it was about 40 degrees out so I went outside to do a long run. Another half marathon distance in, and a great time – but I started really feeling the pain by about mile 8. I feel it in my hips and I’m pretty sure it’s bursitis, which there’s no easy way to fix. It gets to be torture toward the end, so I’m going to do my best to get to yoga in these next two weeks and just stretch out that area as much as possible. If anyone else has any tips for lessening hip pain while running please let me know. The pain is only really while I’m running – once I’m done it’s just the typical soreness I would expect after a long run.
Highlights: The series of nonsensical adventures that Alice goes through are cute and captivating. There is a lot of silliness going on here, making it a pretty funny movie.
Low points: Well, this was a highlight too, but the movie is just silly. There’s no real consistent plot to it, and sometimes it just gets a little too ridiculous for me. The nonsense goes on for a little too long – I prefer a little more plot in my movies, or at least memorable songs.
Music: There are a lot of songs in this movie, but most of them are super short or else just not that interesting. But with so many mini songs that are so well known, I’m quite surprised that nothing from Alice in Wonderland appears on my set of Disney’s Greatest Hits CDs. You have “The Unbirthday Song,” “I’m Late,” which are the most memorable, but you also have Alice singing “In a World of My Own,” “The Walrus and the Carpenter,” and the flowers singing “All in a Golden Afternoon.” Lots of different songs throughout the whole movie – basically every time Alice goes somewhere else or meets someone else, they sing a song.
On my last trip to Disney in October, I was lucky enough to stay in the newest DVC units at the Grand Floridian (newest until the ones at the Poly opens, anyway!). These are housed in a separate building from the main Grand building, just a short walk away.
When you enter the building you are greeted with a beautiful fountain, decorated with Mary Poppins penguins. Everything looks and feels so new. I know some people aren’t fond of the themeing of the Grand, but I love that Victoria style era, and Mary Poppins fits in perfectly (elements for the movie occur again in the room décor).
We had a 1 bedroom villa, and the first thing that you saw when you walked in was the kitchen. And it was a beautiful kitchen! There’s a fridge, oven, cabinets – everything that you could possibly need. The kitchen has a little nook with a table and chairs for eating as well. If you go to your right when you come in there is a small hallway that leads to the bathroom, and in that hallway you’ll also find a washer and dryer.
Disney in your Day News
Yay, it’s finally February! That means I’m going back to Disney! If you’ve been following my blog you probably know that I’m running the Glass Slipper Challenge, so I’m getting excited but also a little nervous about that. We have so many other fun things planned too – dinner at Yachtsman, FP+ to meet Anna and Elsa, and even a trip over to Universal to check out the Harry Potter stuff! Plus, I’m now signed up for the Disneyland Half marathon – which means I’ll get my coast to coast medal, and I’ll be going to Disneyland for the first time!
As for the blog, once I return from my trip expect to see lots of park updates. I’ll also be continuing some of the regular series, such as “thoughts on Disney movies.” I’m hoping to get some more recipes and crafts up too. And I may or may not have recently become a little obsessed with tsum tsums, so I have a feeling they will be appearing on the blog as well!
- First the “big news” was that Disney was introducing these cool looking mugs at their Starbucks locations. However, now the Epcot mug has been pulled because of the monorail having a purple stripe on it (the color of the monorail from the fatal accident in 2009, a color that has since been retired by Disney. My bet is that they’ll change the color of the stripe and have the mug back on the shelves as soon as possible.
- Disney is already getting ready to make new Indiana Jones movies… and rumor has it that Chris Pratt will be playing the lead role.
- People have been clamoring for Disney to introduce a Latina princess, and now she’s here – Elena of Avalor, who will have her own show on Disney Junior.
- If you’re concerned about the construction at the Magic Kingdom, check out this update to see what exactly is going on now.
- Peter Pan’s Flight now has a new queue – I’m looking forward to seeing this when I visit!
- This makes me so happy: it has now been announced that Emma Watson will be playing Belle in a live action Beauty and the Beast film. I think it’s a great casting choice!
- Disneyland is going to be celebrating it’s 60th Anniversary this year, which is the diamond celebration. Disney has announced some of the exciting things that will be happening for that event!
Today I have a guest post up at another Disney blog, Inspired by Dis. Over there you can read all about how I upcycled my old Christmas cards to turn them into gift tags to use for next year. There are even some Disney ones thanks to the people that sent out Disney Christmas cards! To my friends and family, expect to see some of these tags on your gifts next year!
I can’t believe that in 3 weeks I’ll be running the Glass Slipper Challenge! I’m hoping to get in one more long run before that but the weather doesn’t seem to be cooperating.
Honestly, in terms of running this was a pretty boring week. It was treadmill all week, about the same pace throughout. But at least I managed to get some running in!
Ipsy is a make-up bag subscription with 5 items per month for $10. You also get a bag every month.
Coastal Scents Liquid Eyeliner ($2.95)- I didn’t open this one yet because I have plenty of eyeliner. I’d like to try and trade it for something else.
Laura Mercier Foundation Primer ($9.70) – I don’t really know exactly what a foundation primer does, but I tried it and it seemed nice enough.
Hey Honey Exfoliating Mask ($7.00)- I haven’t used this yet either, but I look forward to it!
Mojito Lip Balm ($12.00)- I liked this a lot. It makes lips shiny, had a nice flavor, and felt good on my lips that are all chapped from the cold.
Pacifica Coconut eye shadow ($4.67)- This was a fine, neutral eye shadow. I just feel like I’ve gotten a neutral eye shadow in every Ipsy bag, so I don’t know that I need more.
All told I’m coming up with a value of $36.32, which is great! Although I’m not super excited about any of the products in it, but that’s just based on my own preferences. The mojito lip balm is probably my favorite.
The theme for this month’s Loot Crate , a subscription box of geeky goods, was “rewind.”
In many ways I wish my life could be all about Disney, all the time. But in “real life,” I don’t work for Disney. I do, however, have a job that I love, and that’s working in the children’s department of a library. And every once in awhile, there’s an opportunity to bring a little bit of Disney into my work place.
As we know, kids have been going crazy over Frozen. We’ve ordered a ton of Frozen books that get checked out all the time. And with the winter and the snow coming up, we decided the best display we could put up for the month of January would be Frozen themed! And of course I volunteered to do it 😉
For the display I first pulled all of the books that we had that were Frozen themed. This included our Frozen books, but because those go so quickly I tried to pick other books related to Frozen as well. I got some copies of the Snow Queen, books on Norway, and non-fiction books on ice and snow.
To decorate I found some resources online. I cut out paper snowflakes, some of which were Frozen inspired with hidden Olaf or Sven. And I made a Frozen sign and Olaf banners to hang on the windows. I also found a paper project to make a little Anna and Elsa. Finally, I found a picture of Olaf and added the words “Reading is Cool” (because it is!).
I’m pretty happy with how it turned out! It was a really fun display to put together and the kids would get very excited when they came into the library and saw it.
Another blogger over at The Animation Commendation tagged me in a post to create my own personal film festival – basically, a list of my favorite films from each year that I’ve been alive. I’ll try to pass along the fun by tagging some other bloggers as well! You’ll see a lot of Disney movies on this list, but maybe a few others as well. I did some honorable mentions too since I have such a love of Disney, but enjoy other films too! I talk about Disney a lot on here (obviously), but this will also give you a glimpse into other things I enjoy.
1988: Who Framed Roger Rabbit
1989: The Little Mermaid
Honorable Mention: Dead Poets Society
When I discovered the Magic of Disney Animation at Hollywood Studios, I fell in love with it. If you’re not familiar, you can go back there and they have drawing classes about every 25 minutes. An artist will guide you step by step through how to draw your own Disney character. This is something I now have to do every time I’m at Disney. I’m not much of an artist myself, but with their guidance my drawings come out pretty good! It’s a fun experience and it also provides you with a free souvenir that you made yourself!
There are apparently almost 50 different characters available to draw. The one that you get is dependent upon what the artist feels like doing. A lot of times they will ask the crowd which ones they’ve done already, to try and get as many new ones as possible. There’s definitely a chance you will duplicate, but I’m aiming for as many different ones as I can! I usually get in one drawing per trip. It was a bucket list item to draw 5 different characters. And I’ve actually done 6. Now that I’ve achieved it, I’m aiming for 15!
We are only one month away from the Glass Slipper Challenge! I’m excited and pumped, though my (failed) run Friday didn’t exactly get me motivated. What does have my motivated is my new FitBit Surge – if you didn’t see the review I wrote this week, go check it out!
I kind of “reversed” the week this time around to get my long run in at the beginning of the week when it was a little warmer. I did this run the day after last week’s last run, so I still got the “Glass Slipper Challenge” effect of running 4 miles one day and 13 the next. Even though the schedule said 12.5 I wasn’t going to stop there where I was so close to doing the whole distance! I toughed it out, but I have to say that after mile 10 I really started feeling it. I slowed down a lot, and had a ton of pain in my hips. The things that usually bother me, like my ankles or my knees, didn’t. I guess it’s just going to take more practice at going over the 10 mile distance.
The mid-week runs were the typical 36 minutes. Tuesday I was actually fortunate enough to get outside again, as it was about 40 degrees – I’ve found that anything under 40 is usually really bad for me, so if I see that 4 in the temperature I jump on the chance!
Thursday was colder so it was in on the treadmill.
This past Friday I tried to do the scheduled 4 mile run outside. It was about 36 degrees. Unfortunately, a combination of things had me stopping early. My lungs were hurting, I guess from the cold. And I ate a lot of fruit and veggies before I ran – I think I need something a little more substantial and to throw some carbs in there. It’s really discouraging when just a week ago I did 13.1 miles, and then I couldn’t even get past 1.5.
This week the word is that we’re going to be getting a pretty terrible snowstorm, so there’s no chance of me running outside – or even being able to get to the gym to do a treadmill run. My fingers are crossed that things will get better as the week goes on.
While not directly Disney related, I know I have a lot of runners that read this blog and I recently got the FitBit Surge, so I wanted to share some of my thoughts on it. I’ve never had a running watch before, though I’ve been wearing a FitBit for over a year.
Here’s my history with FitBit: I got the Force for Christmas last year and was completely in love with it. Then, as you might have heard, it got recalled for giving people a rash. A few weeks after they announced the recall I got the rash, so I sadly sent it back and got the Flex instead. That was okay, but nowhere near as good as the Force. Then I had been thinking about buying a running watch in addition to my Flex when they announced the Surge. I figured it would be perfect to replace my Flex and get a running watch!
- I want something I can wear every single day. The nice thing about the Force/Flex was that they were really unobtrusive – they were small and sleek and cool looking. The Surge is understandably bigger, but I’m slowly getting used to wearing it every day.
- The band itself is very comfortable. Mind you, I am used to wearing something on my wrist every day. I got the small size, and I go in between notches depending on if I’m sweating and how swollen my wrist is!
- The screen display itself is really nice. It’s touch screen, and you can easily swipe to get the different stats. Numbers are big, easy to read, and clear.
- It comes in three different colors: black, blue, and orange.
- Clock: Shows what time it is, which is nice because unlike the Flex it can double as a watch. You can choose if you want the time displayed in 12 hour mode or 24 hour (military) mode.
- Step count: Shows how many steps you’ve taken, and a bar displaying how much of your daily goal you’ve achieved.
- Heart rate: One of the new things to FitBit is the heart rate monitor. This setting will show you what your current BPM is.
- Miles: Displays how many miles you’ve gone that day.
- Calories: calories burned.
- Flights: How many flights of stairs you’ve climbed that day (sometimes if you go uphill it will count it, even if it’s not stairs, like if you’re running).
Highlights: I like this move because it makes me happy. There is some action and some suspense (will she get locked up in her room after the ball or will the mice be able to free her?). But ultimately it’s all about the cheesy romance, and good overcoming evil. People now may complain that Cinderella is a softie, and a bad role model for females because she always does what she is told. But I’m not sure I completely agree. I like the fact that kindness and good heartedness is rewarded, rather than rebelliousness (though that has its own place too).
Low points: My husband really doesn’t like this film. His argument is that “nothing happens.” As he says, it’s just a bunch of mice running around for the majority of the movie… which is somewhat true. The actual events really concerning Cinderella and the ball and all of that take place relatively quickly, and if you cut out all of the fuss with the mice and the cat and the dog and whatnot, the movie would probably only be about half an hour. But they’re cute little mice! And they wear clothes!
I will start out this post by announcing that I am now officially a Disney travel agent! So if you’re interested in booking a trip to Disney, please contact me (BeckyG@castledreamstravel.com) I know there are a lot of Disney experts that read this blog that don’t think they need a travel agent, but I wanted to explain to you why I really do think having one is a great asset to your trip planning (In the past I’ve used others myself for my Disney trips!).
It costs you absolutely nothing to use a travel agent. So why wouldn’t you? They can do so much for you at no cost to you. You can have as much or as little control as you like over the bookings and everything that goes into the trip.
You will save time.
These days there is a lot that goes into booking a Disney trip. Resort reservations, dining reservations, fastpass reservations, magical express, magic bands – that’s just the tip of the iceberg! If you’re not a Disney expert you could spend countless hours researching all of that, but a Disney travel agent will have that information ready for you, and will be able to tailor it to your particular wants and needs.
We know our stuff.
Too often there are Disney travel agents that just book your trip and then call it a day. That’s not how we do things at Castle Dreams Travel. Before booking we can help you figure out where to stay that’s in your budget, and then we’ll help with everything else – memory maker, fastpass plus, dining reservations, magical express, etc. If you know where you want to eat, great! If you don’t, I can recommend a number of places based on your tastes and budget.
My third stitch fix came in the mail! I kept requesting the same stylist, Julie, because she really listened to what I wanted and has done a good job so far. And I’ve been lucky that they always give me her! I’ve been reading a lot of other Stitch Fix reviews on blogs, and it’s been fun. Please note that I am not a model at all. So in the pictures you will basically see the same three poses, and I won’t be going out in the snow or anything for a better backdrop!
Humphrey Streak Print Dress – $88.00
I had asked for another long sleeved dress, since I liked the one in my last fix but it didn’t fit right. This one was really cute, a little different, and would be perfect to wear casually or for work. Only problem was the price – $88 for a dress! That’s so much! Ultimately though, I liked it far better than anything else in my fix, so I decided to go for it. What really pushed it over the edge for me was the fact that it was both machine washable and able to be tumble dried. Verdict: Keep.
Cold, cold, go away, come again some other day! In case you hadn’t guessed, I was stuck on the treadmill this week. Three treadmill runs. On a related running note, if you didn’t see it I just did a review of Clif products and all that they have to offer to runners (Clif energy bars, energy shot bloks, energy gels, and protein powder). Clif bars are the best thing for me before a run, and their shot bloks are my fuel of choice while running! So if you’re trying to figure out which fuels work for you, I highly recommend you try them.
This was one of the “in between” weeks that didn’t have a long run, which I’ve been pretty consistent on. No real surprises here, a pretty typical week – no complaints from me!
On Thursday’s four mile run I intended to take it easy, since I had plans to do my long, 13.1 mile run the next day. However, I didn’t take it as easy as I thought I would! I just got in the groove, I guess. But I do think it will be good practice for the Glass Slipper Challenge!
One of the most important things when it comes to running is fuel. And that includes what you put into your body before, during, and after running. This is especially true for long distances, and if you’re training for a Disney race you’ll probably want to investigate some of the fuel options. Clif, the company best known for making Clif bars, has a variety of options to help you out and they were kind enough to send me some samples to review.
I can honestly say that Clif products are my absolute favorite when it comes to fuel. I’ll talk about the different things in a moment, but I pretty much swear by their shot bloks as my fuel of choice for any time I’m going to be running longer than an hour. They manage to make things that work but also taste good.
Clif Bars are energy bars that are made with organic ingredients. It’s kind of like a granola bar, but packed with things to give you energy and endurance. These can be eaten before, during, or after activity, but I like them before running. I have a very picky stomach, and there are few things that my stomach can handle before a run. Luckily, Clif bars are something I found that really works for me, especially for morning runs. I also try to keep one or half of one on me when I run, because if my stomach craves something a little more substantial, this is the perfect solution.
Sometimes when I’m in a rush in the morning and don’t have time to make breakfast, I’ll grab one of these instead. They keep me full almost til lunch time, which is perfect. They have a wide variety of flavors, most of which I’ve found are delicious. My favorites are blueberry crisp, coconut chocolate chip, and the seasonal iced gingerbread. That was so delicious for this time of year!
Ooh, this sounds like it will be a fun one! Disney villains are fascinating characters, though I will admit the thought of having to marry one of them might not be the most appealing thing in the world. And then there was this question: is “kill” the villain I like the least and “marry” the one I enjoy the most? Or the one that I would literally want to kill the most or marry the most. I went with the more literal translation, so the villains in contention for kill are great characters – just they’re such great villains I want to kill them! There were definitely some difficult choices this week, but here’s what I came up with for this month’s edition of Kill, Refurb, Marry.
Kill – Frollo
This was a tough choice. Which Disney villain makes your skin really crawl the most? And makes you want to punch them in the face? There are certainly a number of contenders here, but I went with Frollo. Talk about evil personified. He is a cruel, heartless man, treating people terribly because they are different from him. Even though characters like Maleficent and the Evil Queen do terrible things and are certainly evil, Frollo seems to hit home a bit more because he’s more human. There’s no magic or evil spells that are causing him to do what he does, it’s just a malicious human nature. Maleficent couldn’t exist in real life, but Frollo could. And that is terrifying.
Highlights: The Wind in the Willows is a fun short with a cute story and memorable characters. The Legend of Sleepy Hallow portion has some high points in it, though overall I wasn’t a huge fan (though I know many people are). But I did enjoy some of the music in it and some of the scenes.
Low points: The Legend of Sleepy Hallow came off as a bit odd to me. I think part of this is because the original story itself is odd, but then turning it into an animated movie presumably for kids makes it a bit weirder. It seems funny and lighthearted at the beginning, but the ending… not so much. Ichabod himself isn’t very likable so there’s not a ton of investment in the characters.
There are tons of fun things to do in Disney World that everyone knows about – however, one of the great things about the theme parks is that there are so many hidden treasures that not everyone knows about! If you’re visiting Disney World but you want to check out what else there is to do aside from the headliner rides and restaurants, here are some suggestions – hopefully you can discover something new on your next trip!
Make a wish at Cinderella’s wishing well – it only takes a moment, but it’s like a private little magical moment. Find Cinderella’s wishing well, pull out a penny, and make a wish! This is something fun to do with kids, but it’s also sweet with couples or even just by yourself. After all, it’s Disney World – if you wish hard enough, it’s sure to come true!
Ride those rides you absolutely never go on – everyone has them. Maybe you’ve never done some attractions, or maybe it’s just been awhile since you went on them. Instead of heading straight to Space Mountain or Toy Story Mania, take a moment to enjoy Astro Orbiter or Walt Disney: One Man’s Dream.
It was a pretty big week for my run training. I only got in 3 of the 4 runs, but I managed the long run, which is the furthest distance I’ve ever gone! And now that we’re 6 weeks away my costume is really starting to come together. I made my shirt for the half the other day!
I did my long run at the beginning of the week rather than the end, on Sunday. That’s because it was an amazing 55 degrees last Sunday! Crazy considering by Tuesday we were looking at 10 degrees. So I did my 11 miles, and it wasn’t too bad! I was definitely feeling it by the end, and it’s hard to imagine doing 2 more, but I’m sure by the time the half rolls around I’ll be able to.
Wednesday I did one of my short runs on the treadmill. A good treadmill pace and no complaints, other than I wish it wasn’t so darn cold here so I could run outside!
Thursday I was back at the gym on the treadmill, with a run pretty much identical to Wednesday’s. At least I’m being consistent!
This past week I got the opportunity to go see Disney’s Frozen on Ice at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. This was my third Disney on Ice show there, but not surprisingly it was much more crowded than the other two that I attended. Lots of little girls in Elsa and Anna costumes, and a few little boys dressed as Olaf, too!
They had the typical food and souvenirs set out, but of course most things were Frozen themed. I still can’t get over how crazy expensive these items are, but people pay it! There were snow cones in Anna and Elsa cups, as well as one in an Olaf cup (that cost $3 extra, making that a $15 snow cone). Then there was cotton candy that came with an Olaf hat, and popcorn in a Mickey and friends bag. You can see some of the souvenirs in the pictures, but they had dolls, figurines, necklaces, and plenty of light up toys!
The show itself began with a little pre-show that involved some of the cast members dancing, then introducing Mickey and Minnie. They in turn brought out some of our Disney favorites, including a number of princesses, Donald Duck, Nemo, and Timon and Pumbaa. Finally it was time for Frozen on Ice to begin!
This is part of a new series I’m wanting to put up on the blog about visiting other theme parks. Sure, nothing else will be Disney, but for many people Disney is a vacation that is far away and expensive – which means it doesn’t happen that often. But if you enjoy theme parks, there are many other nice locations you can visit!
Busch Gardens Williamsburg is probably the closest theme park I’ve been to that shares some of the qualities that makes Disney so special. First of all, it really is a theme park, rather than an amusement park. To me there is a big difference – a theme park is all about the themeing, where as an amusement park is just random rides thrown together. Busch Gardens is broken into themed areas based around different countries, mostly European. You have Italy, Scotland, England, Ireland, France, “New France” (Canada), Germany, and of course that classic country “Oktoberfest”. 😉
I know my costumes for my upcoming Disney races during Princess weekend: I’ll be doing Snow White for the 10k and Anna for the Half. However, I’m also planning to sign up for the Disneyland half marathon in September! And honestly, one of my favorite parts of planning for a race is deciding on a costume.
I plan to run the Princess races as often as I can, and I like dressing as a princess for those – so for Disneyland I’m thinking I would like to do a non-princess. Here are some ideas I’ve come up with so far. Which one do you like the best? Any other suggestions?
Vanellope Von Schweetz
I would really love to do this costume, but I’m wondering if it might be better to save it for when I someday do the Wine and Dine half – because it’s sort of food related and all, with the candy and whatnot.
Highlights: None of the shorts here were really awful. Does that count as a highlight? On the flip side, while they were all at least okay, there were none that I really enjoyed. If I had to pick a favorite I suppose it would be “Little Toot,” about a young tugboat and sung by the Andrews Sisters.
Low points: There were no shorts in this one that really stood out to me. Johnny Appleseed was okay, but man is that story rather boring and drawn out. Same with Pecos Bill – it just felt like it went on for way too long. Blame it on the Samba features two of the three caballeros, and is just as trippy and odd as that movie is.
The countdown on my phone says that I’ll be in Disney World in 47 days, which is a little scary! It’s really starting to feel real that not only will I be running my first half marathon, but I’ll also be doing a 10k the day before. Granted, I plan to do plenty of character stops during the 10k and not push myself too hard, but it’s still going to be crazy. I also have to get to work on my costumes. I’m almost set for my 10k costume (I’m doing Snow White), but I still have some work to do on my Anna costume for the half! I did get a very cute cape for Christmas that I’m planning to wear though 🙂
This was an “in between” week, meaning that I didn’t have a long run on the weekend, just a 4 mile run. Still, I feel like I’m constantly fighting with the weather so every week is a challenge. This coming week looks like it’s going to be pretty rough.
It was down to Jiko and Ohana. Both are great restaurants with a lot to offer, and both are extremely popular. But only one could be crowned the winner. After an extremely close vote, the closest we’ve ever had, the winner is…
Wow, we’ve reached 2015! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season and a great start to your year. Christmas is my favorite holiday of all, but I have to say that my second favorite is probably New Year’s. I love the idea of starting fresh, and looking forward at all that will come in the next year! For me, 2015 holds two trips to Disney World and my very first trip to Disneyland, as well as two Disney half marathons that should earn me my coast to coast medal. I’m excited!
Disney in your Day News
The past year has been a good one for Disney in your Day, but I’m excited for all that is to come in the new year. December included lots of holiday themed posts, as well as my review of Into The Woods. In the immediate future you can expect more thoughts on Disney movies, as well as the end of the restaurant tournament. Plus, I want to roll out a new series, “Other theme parks,” featuring other places around the country that might be worth visiting when you can’t get to Disney. And I’ll continue with my Glass Slipper Challenge training until February, when I actually run the Glass Slipper Challenge!
2014 was the first full calendar year that Disney in your Day was in existence (I started it in July 2013, so it didn’t have a full year in 2013). Since then, I’m super excited and happy with how things have been going, but I’m also excited about what is to come in the future! Above you can see how many views I’ve gotten the past year, as well as our most popular day (my dad’s birthday! The “Finding Disney in Once upon a Time” pin on Pinterest went viral that day). I write about things I love, but I also want to write about things you want to hear about. So that brings me to my big question for 2015:
What would you like to see covered on the blog?
It can be anything – theme parks, movies, more running stuff, or something I haven’t talked about much before, like Disney weddings. What would you most like to read about? Do you want more reviews of Disney running stuff? More Disney Etsy items? Or ideas for another “guide” that you would love to see?
Top 10 Posts for 2014
To close out 2014, I want to take a look back at the top 10 posts from this year. In case you missed them, here’s what was most popular with Disney in your Day readers:
10. Recipe: Lapu Lapu from the Polynesian
Such a good drink, and now you can make it at home!
Bulu Box is a subscription box that sends you samples of health, nutrition, and weight loss products.
Funnbar Protein Candy Chews – I loved the idea of this product, but the taste was just awful. It left an aftertaste in my mouth that didn’t seem to go away for hours.
Berry Sleepy – a sleep aid that is supposed to work in 30 minutes, but it didn’t seem as effective to me as my usual melatonin.
Zestra Essential Arousal Oils – I could see this definitely working for some people. It definitely made this area more.. sensitive… but it was a bit much for me.
Justin’s Peanut Butter – I’m not a huge peanut butter fan, but this one was really good. I’d buy it again. It had a natural taste, which I enjoy.
Sport Tea – I haven’t tried this one yet, but I hope it tastes good. The idea of extra energy is nice, and I do enjoy tea.
This box had a better variety of items than the past one, but I’ve currently put my Bulu Box subscription on hiatus. I like it, but it’s definitely not worth $10 a month to me. When I got the groupon it was a great deal, with each box costing less than $5. For just samples I can’t see spending more on it, and I’m not sure you can get a discount more than once. If I find a way to get it cheaper again I will be back!
I should start this review by saying that I’m a huge Into the Woods fan. I’ve been performing in musical theater since I was 11 years old, and have seen tons of musicals. Into the Woods is my favorite – I saw the revival on Broadway three times. As a middle school student I would most on musical message boards and chat about Into the Woods all afternoon. So when I heard they were making a movie of it, I was both “excited and scared,” as Little Red Riding Hood would say. Excited to see it come to the big screen, but scared they might ruin it.
I have to say, overall, I was very pleased. I might have loved it – I’m still deciding and would like to see it again, but I definitely liked it a lot. For the most part they stuck really closely to the original musical. Most of the dialogue and songs that were in it were the same, it was only some plot points that were changed and stuff that was cut. I was really, really impressed by the performances in it, as I’m sometimes skeptical of Hollywood stars taking on Broadway tunes. Luckily, they definitely pulled it off.
Spoilers will follow from here on out, so if you haven’t seen it or don’t want to know, come back after you’ve watched the movie!
8 weeks means that we are only 2 months away! I seriously can’t wait, I’m excited both about the trip to Disney World and running these races. And this week’s training felt really good. In spite of the holidays, I managed to get 4 runs in, and one of them was a long run.
On Monday I did my run on the treadmill. Good pace, and felt pretty good. Glad I was able to squeeze this run in despite all of the pre-Christmas stuff going on!
I switched my days around a little to do my long run on Wednesday, Christmas Eve. I knew the weekend would be filled with family time, and at least for the first half of Christmas Eve the rest of my family was working. So I took advantage of that and went for a morning run. The good news is that it was 50 degrees out. The bad news was that it was raining lightly, but steadily, the whole time. I was pretty done by the end, mostly because my feet were squishing so much from the unavoidable puddles. But it was my best pace time ever for a longer run, so I’m definitely happy about that!
Friday I did a quick 2 mile run on the treadmill. Great pace for the ‘mill, so no complaints there!
The next day I also managed to squeeze in a shorter run before a 3 hour car ride. I’ve been lazy today, so I’m really glad I got to it when I did, and with a good pace too!
The next in the series of “package films” from the 1940’s, this one features two shorts: Bongo, about a bear who runs away from the circus, and Mickey and the Beanstalk, a sort of re-telling of Jack and the Beanstalk.
Highlights: Mickey and the Beanstalk is a cute, fun film with lots of little gags and funny bits thrown in. It features three of our favorite characters: Mickey, Donald, and Goofy. The giant is more humorous than scary and all in all it’s an enjoyable little short.
Low points: Bongo. Oh my gosh, I’m sorry if anyone out there likes it (there must be fans), but it was just awful. It had very little plot and went on for way too long. The first half of the film is basically just Bongo exploring the wild and it takes forever. Then he falls in love and there’s a really long, excessive song about it. The ending is okay but it does not make up for the rest of it. Also, during Mickey and the Beanstalk there is some really weird stuff going on with the narration and some ventriloquist dummies, which honestly freak me out. Luckily they’ve released a better version of Mickey and the Beanstalk that is narrated by Ludwig von Drake, rather than these weird ventriloquist dummies.
This week was kind of a downer for me in terms of running. I did go back and get in the 7 mile run that I had skipped last week, but then the 4 mile run I was supposed to do this week got cut short. I hate having to deal with all of this cold!
On Tuesday I hopped on the treadmill for my usual weekday run. Good pace and it felt pretty good, so no complaints other than I wish I didn’t have to be on the treadmill!
Wednesday I got in that 7 mile run that I had skipped. I was actually really pleased with it – I was only 1 second off my best pace for a run in between 6-8 miles. Thank goodness it wasn’t freezing that day and I could actually run outside!
Friday I attempted the 4 mile run but it was just too cold for me. My lungs were really hurting so I decided to stop. The whole weekend was very cold, so I tried to go to the gym Saturday after work. Well, turns out my gym closes at 1pm on the weekends 😦 So I never did get that 4 mile run in, but I guess 1 mile is better than nothing.
I’m trying to figure out where I’ll fit 4 runs in this week, what with the holidays and all of the traveling we’ll be doing. Wish me luck, as I’m supposed to be doing a 9.5 mile run at some point!