Saturday, February 28, 2015

7 Years Later...

After this long and incredibly difficult week, I think it's time to try to focus on something a bit more positive.  Today is Eliot's and my 7th year dating anniversary.

Eliot and I started dating in 2008 during my senior year of college.  It was actually our mutual love of Disney that brought us together.  Eliot and I first met each other through our Admissions Representative jobs.  The first time we really connected was when both of us did a Saturday Information Session in the fall of 2007.  We worked our session, did our campus tours and walked back to our buildings together.  I told him about the Disney ImagiNations Competition I was planning to participate in during the spring semester.  What should have been a quick walk back to our dorms turned into over an hour of conversation about Imagineering, roller coasters, ride design, theme parks and our love of Disney.  I told him about all of the Imagineering books I had collected and he asked if he could see them sometime.

Over the next few months, Eliot and I spent more time together at Admissions events.  We began talking over AOL Instant Messenger and became closer friends. One winter night, Eliot came over to my room and we talked for hours about our love of Disney, our families, and our lives.  He started to come over more often and we'd work on our homework.  Eliot would read through my Imagineering books and give me suggestions while I worked on my ImagiNations project.

By the time Eliot told me about his Eeyore plush collection, I knew he was special.  I've collected Tigger plush for years.  He told me the first time he knew we had something special was when we were listening to music in my dorm room and the Ducktales theme song came on.  As they say, the rest is history.  °o°

Friday, February 27, 2015

Love and Loss

Hello friends.  I'm sorry that I've been away from my blog for longer than I planned.  A lot has happened since my last post.  During my last visit, I was remembering our dog Lucky.  What you didn't know was that I was also taking a walk down memory lane for another reason; Papa was ill and in the hospital.

On Wednesday, we lost him.  And my heart shattered into a million little pieces.

Today, my life is a little less smiley.  The world lost another kind soul, a good man and a shining light.  My family lost an incredible father, grandfather, great-grandfather and a loving husband.  I lost a big part of my heart.  What remains is a hole that will never again be filled in the same way.

I'm not able to talk about it much yet.  The wound is too fresh; the cut too deep.  What I will say is that "Smilin' Mylen" might not be here with us anymore, but I know he'll always be watching over us.  Papa, I love you so much and I'll miss you every single second of everyday for the rest of my life.  °o°

Monday, February 23, 2015

Happy Birthday Lucky Oreo

Today's a special day- it's our dog Lucky Oreo's birthday.  We lost Lucky back in November of 2009 when he was  a few months shy of turning 15.  He lived an incredible life and was immensely loved.  He was like a brother to me and Jeremy.

We got Lucky on a nice spring day in 1995 (May 5th to be exact) when I was 10.  We had still had our first dog, Tobie, at the time as well.  Lucky was one of the last two puppies at the SPCA when we went to pick him up.  I fell in love with him immediately; we all did.  It was the beginning of a beautiful journey.

We brought him home and had to name him. Of course, with our love of Disney and the 101 Dalmatians movie, he had to be named Lucky.  (Both of his ears were black just like Lucky's in the movie.)  One of my friends said he looked like an Oreo cookie so that's how he got his middle name.

Through the years, we had moments when we thought we named him after the wrong Disney character and food.  Daddy always joked that we should have named him "Goofy Devil Dog" instead, but he was a really good dog.  He traveled well and he's probably been in more hotel rooms than most people.  He's also been to Disney World a few times.  He liked to visit Mickey Mouse too!

He's been there for most of the big moments in my life.  He was around for my 8th grade, high school and college graduations.  It was actually pretty hard when he wasn't around for Eliot's and my wedding.  That was the first "big" life moment that he missed. But I had my favorite a picture of him and I on a charm attached to my bouquet.

Lucky's favorite place was our family camp on Long Pond.  He absolutely loved riding in our boat.  He even had his own designated seat in the front.  (He would make you move if you got in his way.)  In fact, Mom and Dad even named the boat Lucky's Charm.  He loved playing in the woods around camp.  He wasn't a huge fan of swimming, but I think that's because of the time he went underwater.  He got a little overzealous getting out of the boat one time and landed between the boat and the dock.  He wasn't too impressed when he was completely submerged.  Thankfully, we were right next to the shoreline and he got out ok.

Lucky loved to play with his toys.  He had quite a few of them throughout the years.

His favorites were the plush squeaky toys.  

He also liked to sleep on Dad's desk when we left him at home.  We assume it was because he could be up higher and see out the windows to the back yard.  It was also the best place to hear when we returned home.  It's a wonder he didn't hurt himself getting up and down.

He also had to be in all of the family photos.  I have one somewhere where he's sticking his tongue out at the camera.  Mom was trying to take a nice Christmas picture and when Jeremy and I finally cooperated, he didn't.  This picture was from when I played varsity volleyball in high school and Jeremy was on the cross country team.

Lucky loved the snow.  He would run around and play in it with Jeremy and I in the backyard.  He also loved to eat it.  Lots of it.

He loved Christmas.  We had to put his stocking high up so he wouldn't get into the treats in the night.  I always grabbed his stocking first and helped him "open" it.  He always stuck his head all the way into it every Christmas morning.  Then he thought all of our presents were for him.  He even helped me open a few of mine.

Of course, we have lots of pictures of Lucky.  He was my favorite subject to photograph for years.  I also would set up photos for him.  When I was in college, I'd take pictures of him with the Mike's Hard Lemonade bottles.  He would always give me weird looks and wonder what on Earth I was doing.

He was there when we moved me into my first apartment.  He enjoyed jumping around and laying on my new futon.  I think he approved.

He also was quite fond of the porch at my apartment.  I was on the end of the property so he could look out and see all of the other people walking their dogs.  As you can see, it was also a nice place for an afternoon nap.

During one of those stays at my apartment, I took this photo of Lucky and Dad.  It reminds me of Adam and God from Michelangelo's painting in the Sistine Chapel.

He was a really special dog.  He was smart as a whip and had a great personality.  I miss him a lot, but I'm so thankful that we had such a wonderful family pet growing up. Eliot and I would like to get a puppy someday, but there will never be another one quite as charismatic as Lucky.

Happy Birthday Lucky Oreo!!!  There isn't a day that goes by that I don't wish you were with us.  Sissa still misses you everyday.  I love you!  °o°

Friday, February 20, 2015

Fun Find: The Magical World of Depot

It's time for another Fun Find Friday!  Today I'm sharing something that was all over my Facebook newsfeed a few weeks ago.  (You might have seen it already.  But if not, you're definitely in for a treat!)  Introducing: The Magical World of Depot!

I saw this and loved it.  It starts off with the Disney movie intro over Home Depot and just gets more amazing as each second passes.  These three are incredibly talented and very entertaining to watch.  I love how seamlessly they incorporated Home Depot into our favorite Disney songs.  You'll see references to all of these songs:  
  • Heigh-Ho
  • Hakuna Matata
  • Colors of the Wind
  • A Whole New World
  • Under the Sea
  • Be Our Guest
  • Let It Go

Of course, there was the obligatory Frozen song.  However, it wasn't cheesy or forced. "Let It Go" was perfect for the ending of the video.  The "magic" was a really fun touch. They even got the ending perfectly with the doors of Home Depot closing!

I have to say that I'm probably biased.  Not only do I love Disney (obviously), but I love going to Home Depot!  The interior designer in me has way too much fun browsing the paint colors, kitchen designs and lighting section.  It is pretty magical.

I was really impressed with this fun tribute to Home Depot and Disney.  What do you think?  I have to confess that it makes me want to go over to Home Depot to dance around with all of those paint chips!  °o°

Sunday, February 15, 2015

A Frozen Valentine's Day Weekend

It's been a busy Valentine's Day weekend here!  We didn't let the blizzard stop us; Eliot and I had a weekend filled with plenty of Disney fun!

Friday night we drove down to Boston after work to catch Disney On Ice: Frozen!!!  As you may recall, that was one of my Blog and Disney Goals for 2015.  We knew the blizzard was going to keep us from going over the weekend, so we went down Friday instead.  Thankfully, I hadn't bought the tickets ahead of time so we could plan accordingly!  The unfortunate part, was that our seats and view kind of stunk.

We ended up sitting in the upper balcony.  It wasn't awful, but we couldn't see anything that was below the lighting and rigging line.  (We're hoping the show will make it's way to Maine a few years from now.  Then we'll go see it again!)

The show itself was fantastic.  I love the set design and the costumes.  They're always my favorite part of the show.  The costumes for the coronation ball blew me away!  I want one of those gowns!!!  And Anna and Elsa's gowns!!!

The show stuck pretty close to the story line.  There were a few things out of order since they had to in order to keep the set changes from being too crazy.

My favorite set was "Let It Go".  The snowflakes projected on the ice were awesome. They also had Elsa form her "ice castle" with lit panels that came down.  She also had awesome ice stairs.  (The stairs lit up like a rainbow at the end of the show... want!!!)

Before we knew it, it was intermission.  Eliot got up and went to walk around.  I stayed in our seats and people watched.  As expected, TD Garden was pretty busy!

Eliot returned a few minutes later with my program!  I always get one at every show I see.  We looked through that during the rest of the intermission.  The second act started with Olaf's "In Summer".

The rock trolls were cool.  They had these remote "rocks" roll out on the ice before they rolled away and turned into the trolls.  One got stuck and had to be rescued!

The show ended with all of the characters on the ice in the grand finale.  Unfortunately, my phone ran out of room to take more photos and Eliot's was dead.  We're definitely planning to go see it again if it makes it to Maine someday!

Before we left the arena, we grabbed a few of the felt banners for our office walls!  I used to get these all the time when I was a kid.  It was one of my favorite souvenirs from the Disney on Ice shows!

We had a late night driving home to Maine, but the fun wasn't over yet!  Valentine's Day morning, we slept in since we were exhausted from getting home after midnight. Eliot surprised me with a Mickey Mouse card and those delicious Valentine's Day brownie batter donuts from Dunkin Donuts.  (Those are heaven!!!)  We also bought a mini Toothless plush as a "gift" for Eeyore.  I guess he's more Duffy sized... anyways.

After a fairly lazy morning, we finally started to get ready for our afternoon: Disney on Ice Princesses and Heroes showing in Portland, ME!  Now you're probably thinking that we're crazy.  Two Disney On Ice shows in under 24 hours?!?!?  Yes.  

Originally, we had planned to spend about $200-$250 on tickets for Frozen.  Since we waited until the last minute, our Frozen seats ended up being a lot less then we set aside.  Instead, we got to see two Disney on Ice shows for the price we were planning to spend on one!  It's the perfect way to celebrate Valentine's Day!

We got ready and I had to wear something appropriate for the occasion.  I grabbed my Under Armour shirt that matched my Frozen tank top.  Then, I found some snowflake earrings and the Disney necklace my parents got me for my 30th birthday!  It even has most of the princesses on it!  And it's heart shaped!  Perfect for Valentine's Day!

Portland is only about 20 minutes from us, so we got there early enough to settle in. We checked out some of the merchandise before the show and got comfortable. 

Our seats at this arena cost less than our seats at Frozen.  And you can see the view is much better.  The arena in Portland has an intimate feeling.  I always saw Disney On Ice here growing up.  It's not as overwhelming as Boston.  And you feel pretty close no matter where you're seated.

Tinker Bell, Mickey and Minnie were our hosts between stories where the princesses and heroes had dreams and wishes.  First we visited the world of Agrabah with Aladdin and Jasmine.  This was one of the longer segments with "One Jump", "Friend Like Me" and "A Whole New World."

Snow White was next with "I'm Wishing", "Heigh-Ho" and "One Song."  Next, we visited with Belle from Beauty and the Beast.  She skated to "Be Our Guest" with Lumiere and a lot of silverware.  I was surprised they didn't do "Beauty and the Beast", but then again, that Beast costume is probably hard to skate in.

We visited Eugene and Rapunzel from Tangled.  They skated to "I See the Light" and it was beautiful.  There were lights projected onto the ice and set to look like the lanterns.

The final scene of the first half was the Little Mermaid.  This was another longer segment.  It started with Prince Eric and his crew skating to "Fathoms Below."  Then we went "Under the Sea" with Ariel, Sebastian and Flounder.  Ariel skated to "Part of Your World."  Then she signed the contract with Ursula, became a human and Eric and Ariel skated to "Kiss the Girl."

During intermission, Eliot got up to walk around again.  I stayed in my seats to Instagram a photo and relax.  The people behind us were talking most of the show so it was nice to have quiet for the few minutes while they were gone.  (Don't ask...)

After intermission, we quickly joined Tiana and Naveen from Princess and the Frog. They were barely on the ice to skate to "Dig A Little Deeper" before they disappeared. (They probably were one of the casualties to adding Frozen to the show.)

The next segment was Sleeping Beauty.  It was also pretty long.  We saw Maleficent before she turned into a dragon and Philip had to fight her.  The dragon was pretty cool.  It ended up setting the ice on fire.  Then Philip kissed Aurora and they skated to "Once Upon A Dream."

We also visited Cinderella at the royal ball.  Prince Charming skated with his guests and her evil stepsisters before Cinderella showed up in her coach.  Then they skated to "A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes."

Mickey and Minnie came out to announce one final story about true love between two sisters.  The kids in the audience went nuts!  The story was another longer segment; although it was obviously shorter version of the full Frozen On Ice show.  They kept a lot of the props similar.  Most noticeable was that Sven was missing.

It was really good and I enjoyed seeing it a second time from closer seats.  I loved seeing "Let It Go" again since we could enjoy the ice palace and pyrotechnics from a lower vantage point.  I even taped it this time and my phone didn't die!

After Frozen, there was a grand finale with all of the Princesses and Princes skating.  I also video taped most of that before my cell phone finally ran out of room.  Eliot took a few photos for me though!  (I've been trying to add the videos to this post but I'm having issues with uploading them.  Maybe I'll try another time.)

After the show, we bought some more Disney On Ice merchandise.  I was so excited when we found the Olaf straws at the snow cone booth.  I didn't really want a snow cone; it was already freezing and we were getting a blizzard.  But I loved the Olaf straw spoon that all the little kids had with their snow cones!  Disney On Ice actually sold them separately!!!  Yay!!!  We got a few of those, my program, a coloring book, and the Tangled flag they had on display.  I also ended up finding a free Disney On Ice fabric rose in the bag when we got home.  It's the perfect souvenir for Valentine's Day! We definitely had a really great Valentine's weekend!  °o°

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Do You Wanna Freeze Your Butt Off?

Well, we're looking at another snowstorm this weekend.  Our section of Maine is supposed to be getting about 18-22 more inches.  (On top of the 2-3 feet we already have.)  I'm not really sure where we're going to put it.  We already can't open our second garage door.  There is no more room for snow in our driveway.  My little car is too small to see over the snow mounds.  Winter is getting old fast.

Photo Source: Disney (and my own lyrics)
But, I always try to look at the bright side of things.  I wrote this tonight to attempt to find some humor in it:

Do you wanna freeze your butt off?

Well just come and visit Maine.  
We have a ton of snow, I won't "Let it Go."
Winter might drive me insane!
They expect another blizzard, what else is new?
Elsa please go away!!!
Do you wanna freeze your butt off?
(You'll really freeze your butt off.)
Winter die...

Ok, maybe winter doesn't have to die.  But it would be nice for it to let up a little bit.  I mean, enough is enough Elsa.  Could we please melt a bit of the snow we already have before we get more?  I really don't think that's too much to ask.

Or maybe we could tone it down on the huge storms?  It's really pretty when there's a few inches at a time.  Please?  Perhaps?  No... ok bye.  °o°

(Note: These memes are all over Pinterest and have been shared by all of us freezing in the Northeast.  I have no idea where they originally came from.)