Tips for Spring Break at Disney World

magic_kingdom_castleLet me start out by saying this: I love Disney. As a seasoned guest of Walt Disney World and a former employee, I enjoy sharing my knowledge with new visitors to make their trips less stressful. I haven’t wrote much about my time in the Disney College Program, but I feel like spring breakers could benefit from my knowledge of this crazy, magical place! I interned at Disney World back in winter/spring 2013 and was there long enough to watch the huge crowds trickle in week after week to celebrate spring break. I was “stationed” in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, so most of my information is based on my knowledge of this park.

Walt Disney World Travel Tips

  1. Get to the parks early. It’s that simple. Be first in line when the parks open and run to the attraction you most want to see. After that, head over to the next biggest attraction you want to see. Within that first hour I can almost guarantee you’ll be able to hit all the major things on your list with minimal wait time.
  2. Parades are your friend. If you don’t want to see the park’s signature parade, then this is a great time to hop on rides and see a few shows. People flock to the parades and the wait time for attractions goes down, just be sure to be on the side of the park you need to be on because when a parade goes through they shut entire areas down to walking traffic.
  3. Get the pesky brochures. At the entrance of every park you will find an array of pamphlets and brochures outlining everything there is to know about the park you’re in. I suggest grabbing a map, character meet and greet guide, and a show time guide to minimize the amount of time you spend wandering around trying to find something.
  4. Understand how character meetings work. As a former character attendant (glorified body guard and time disney_character_attendant keeper), I can tell you from experience that the characters have incredibly strict schedules. I can also tell you that with certain characters especially in Hollywood Studios, they run on a 25 minute on, 5 minute off schedule. This schedule runs about 8 or more hours a day. The character has 25 minutes to meet his fans and is then given a 5 minute warning from his handler that he needs to finish up with his meet and greet. Then, the character gets a 5 minute break before returning to his line of waiting guests. Also, character will likely not be out during parade times. Why? Because most of them are in the parade!
  5. Have a schedule. Before heading to each park, make a list of what you want to see and do the most. Schedule out what time you want to arrive at the park and when you want to leave. My advice? Get to the park when it opens and stay until lunch time when everyone is getting tired. Return to your hotel and relax by the pool and take a nap. Around 4 or 5, head back into the parks to enjoy the evening festivities (fireworks every night in Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, and Epcot). Trust me, this saves a lot of stress and fatigue.
  6. Take advantage of the “Extra Magic Hours”. This particularly applies to the crazy college kids who are used to being up until midnight or later. Every night one park will either open an hour early or stay open 2 hours late. Find out which park is staying open late and enjoy those hours. Typically, the smaller children have fallen asleep and are headed back to the hotel and you can finally enjoy those little kid attractions you’ve been dying to get on (think Peter Pan’s Flight in Magic Kingdom).
  7. Pack for Florida weather. Florida is unpredictable in the spring. As an attendant, at any given time I had with me a water bottle, rain poncho, sunscreen, and lip balm. You never knew what was going to happen. Take a drawstring backpack with you (not the time to sport your new Kate Spade tote) and throw in some all-weather gear. You’ll thank me for this.
  8. Do not have melt downs. Do you know how many times I’ve seen people absolutely lose it over something because of stress? This is a vacation. Take everything with a grain of salt and just enjoy the day. The funny thing about Disney World is that you don’t typically walk away remembering every single ride you went on or show you saw, you only remember who you were with and the laughter you shared. If you don’t make it to see a show, who cares? Find something new to enjoy. I promise you that your vacation will not be near as wonderful if you get caught up in the details.

If you have anything to share, please feel free to comment below!

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A Week in Review

Good morning and happy Thursday. I hope my posts brighten your day a bit and maybe even inspire you. I love going through Instagram or my blog feed and reading what other people are saying. It usually gives me that extra skip in my step to get my day going. Everyone needs something to groove to!

panera_breadThe last week has been relaxing and I’ve truly enjoyed it. Just sitting around and not doing much of anything is a luxury in life and I don’t take it for granted. Starting Saturday my life is going to get busy really fast. Not to mention Thanksgiving is next Thursday and I for one am looking forward to it.

Sunday I spent the day with a friend and we went to Panera Bread. I got tomato soup and a turkey and cranberry flatbread sandwich. It was a nice combo and just enough to satisfy me. I hate feeling overstuffed! You can just look at your stomach and see how it has expanded in the last hour. Getting on a treadmill seems like a great idea until you realize that the food hasn’t quite digested yet.

I also spent a little time shopping around town. I live in typical faux_fur_headbandsuburbia the only difference is that we don’t have many good places to shop. The nearest mall is 45 minutes away. The nearest nice mall is about 90 minutes away. So when I say I’m shopping what I actually mean is going to Target and maybe Marshalls. Anyway, I found the cutest little head band at Target and it’s made to look like fur. It’s on my Christmas list now.

keep_calm_and_eat_cupcakesThe rest of the week has been filled with a lot of sitting around and drinking hot beverages while updating the blog and sending out my resume. Did I mention it’s hard to find a job right now? I’m graduating in 3 weeks and the job market seems to hate me at the moment. I’m getting a tad nervous! It’s times like these when I wish I could jump up and marry a rich man so I wouldn’t have to worry. I think this elevates me to gold digger status though. Oops.

I’ve also been going through my closet and seeing what dresses and little_black_dressprofessional clothing needs dry cleaning or tailoring. I tried on this lacy, black Express dress and am debating on whether I love it anymore. It has become my go-to dress for events but I’m not sure if it still flatters my figure. Opinions please!

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Travel Edition: Niagra Falls!

I took a trip to Niagra Falls last Autumn. It was my first time at this beautiful place. The falls were incredible to see. I’ve never heard such a powerful noise aside from a military jet taking off. Walking around the park was absolutely gorgeous with the leaves starting to turn and the abundant sunshine. A lot of wildlife was present as well. I remember my grandma telling me about a trip she took there years ago with my grandpa. Speaking of my grandpa, his birthday was two days ago. He would have been 102! I’m glad I could visit this place in his memory. 

Towards the end of the afternoon, I ended up crossing the bridge from America to Canada just to say I had been across the border up there. Walking over I had a lovely view of the falls and the river. Upon entering, I went into a Canadian gift shop to get a post card and maple syrup. After about 30 minutes, I headed back to the border and waited in line to get back in my country. They found it odd that I went to Canada for such a short time. The lady reviewing my passport was not happy to let me in but seeing as how I was qualified she had no choice. Being back in your own country, even if you were only gone for a short time, is always a blessing.

Enjoy the photos!

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Where Have I been? Travel Edition!

ocean_city Hello friends! I didn’t post yesterday because it was a travel day for me. I was on a short road trip back from the lovely beaches of Maryland’s Eastern Shore. My family goes camping in Ocean City, Maryland every summer. Camping is our favorite pastime as my mom’s family enjoyed it too. As you can see in the photo to the left, we had a lovely time taking pictures on the jetty next to the harbor. My sister is on the left and her best friend that came along for the trip is on the right.

We spent one day at Assateague Island enjoying the beach and wild assateague_island horses. Legend has it that these horses are descendants of horses that were shipwrecked off the coast of Maryland/Virginia hundreds of years ago. It is thought that the ship was probably Spanish and was carrying livestock to America. Unfortunately the weather didn’t cooperate for us and it was cloudy with a high of 74. Needless to say I was a bit chilly and sat on the beach in my bikini bottoms and hoodie. The water was like ice!

fresh_fruit Later on that day my mom and I took a little trip to one of her favorite stores called The Barn (colonial decorating and all things country) and then picked up some fresh corn grown locally in Delaware at a little produce store. There’s nothing better than fresh veggies and fruits.

After dinner we went to the campground’s karaoke night where my sister line_dancing and a few other girls sang a Carrie Underwood song and then danced the Cotton Eyed Joe (oh memories of middle school flooding back anyone?) I must say that line dancing takes the wind out of you. I was so tired by the end of the camp_fire night. When we got back to our campsite my dad had lit a fire in the fire ring. We sat around playing charades and telling funny stories. My sister was obsessed with puns all weekend so everything she said had a double meaning. At least it kept her laughing!

On Sunday it was cloudy again and not worth the beach trip. We went to a zoo flamingoin Salisbury, MD for some fuzzy animal sight seeing. I fell in love with the flamingos. A few of them were having a fit about something and kept poking at each other. It was adorable. We also saw this beautiful owl who wasn’t too happy to see us. He swiveled his head around when my sister started talking to it. He blinked a few times and opened his beak a little wanting to say something back.

When we got back to our campsite my sister and her friend engaged in shenaniganstheir typical shenanigans and it ended up with my sister on the ground her camp chair. Silly girls.

Finally, we went to the boardwalk and people watched. It never fails to be entertaining. ocean_city_boardwalk People are crazy, that’s all I can say! The girls had a good time spotting cute boys. Ok, I admit to having fun finding them first and then telling them where to look and when to start flipping their hair to get the boys’ attention. I’m just as bad as they are but it was a good time!

I hope you enjoyed the photos and my weekend recap! P.S. Leave a comment on whether or not you would like it if I started focusing a little more on what’s in my closet” type things! Thanks!

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What’s in my Beach Bag

Kenneth_ColeThis weekend I will be laying on the beach spending time in the sun and sand! We take a beach trip at least once a summer to get our fix of salt water and sea breezes. Better yet, we get our summer tans that last until late October.

My first vacation was spent at the beach in a cute little swimsuit with a big floppy hat on my head. I hated the water actually and cried when the waves crashed on the beach. But as any born and raised east coaster knows, a beach bag must be properly packed. I’m going to give you a peak inside my beach bag to see what I’m bringing!

 

Not pictured is my sunscreen (spf 30),  iPhone, ear buds, and little pineapple snack.

I can’t wait to show you all vacation photos when I get back! Please tell me if I’ve forgotten anything for my beach bag! There’s nothing worse than forgetting something big!

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