I’m in Shape! (If Rectangle Counts)

IMG_0593Lately, I’ve been the least motivated to move than I have in the past 15 years.  I’ve found the living room sofa to be much more to my liking than at previous times in my life.  A fluffy, cuddly pooch, the remote control, social media friends via smart phone, those Lip Sync Battle YouTube videos – honestly, who can blame me for drifting dangerously close to full fledged Couch Potato status?

I blame stress, I blame exhaustion, I blame Junior (aforementioned cuddly pooch), and I blame Disney bloggers and podcast hosts for making my Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram feeds much too interesting to ignore.  Alas, I’m…a blob.  Or a block.  Yes, block would be most accurate.  My waistline’s expanded, my muscles have become un-toned, and, while I’m still running, it’s at a mighty leisurely pace I should probably classify as “mosey”.  Why am I telling you this?  Accountability.  I’ve got to do something other than make excuses (I’ve reached expert level!) and you guys will (hopefully) support me in my endeavor to get back on track!  I don’t need much, a bit of sympathy, camaraderie, encouragement maybe?Junior-on-my-shoulder

This has been the strangest year – full of both happy, exciting events and heartbreakingly sad ones…in unprecedented numbers!   The ups and downs have been a convenient way to keep from looking too closely at how I haven’t been focusing on healthy choices.  Physical activity and clean eating were once top of mind!  Justification for NOT exercising (as much) combined with increased indulgence in comfort foods has taken a toll!  I’m sluggish, heavy, and disappointed.  I deserve better than this.  From me.General Dis Pics 11.13 070

Many of you have been following along on my Disney adventures for almost two years.  You’ve regularly offered your insights on the various topics I’ve thrown out for discussion.  I’m hoping you’ll join me again now as I set out to meet some modest (but important) goals.  Should you be inclined to set some goals of your own, I promise to cheer you on!

Between now and November 15th…

  • I will lose 10 pounds (at least).
  • I will be trained and ready to run my 7th half marathon on November 15th.  (To prep for the Princess Half in February, 2016)
  • I will add 10 minutes (or more) of resistance training to my workouts.
  • I will run or bicycle no fewer than six days a week.

That’s it.  I’ll keep you posted.  If you decide to join me and want to share goals, swap progress reports, and be my fitness buddy, shout out to me over on Living a Disney Life’s Facebook page.  I hope to see you there!


Epcot’s Food & Wine Festival Merchandise – 2014 Edition

Yay for the weekend!  The weather is slightly cooler, the promise of fall is in the air and the 2015 Epcot International Food and Wine Festival will soon begin (September 25th – November 16th)!  One of the most anticipated aspects of the Festival is the specialty merchandise.  If you’ve not yet visited Walt Disney World during this most excellent time of the year, Nick’s recap of last year’s Festival merch will give you a great idea about what visitors can expect to see.  Happy Saturday, y’all!

Epcot’s Food & Wine Festival Merchandise – 2014 Edition

By Nick

There are several locations around Epcot selling a wide assortment of Epcot’s 2014 International Food and Wine Festival merchandise.
Let’s take a look at a few items offered for sale in the Festival Center, located inside the old Wonders of Life pavilion in Future World.

You can find some nice merchandise exclusive to this years festival. There is a green Annual Pass version of the tee pictured directly below, but unfortunately there were only large, medium and small sizes left, and I’m an XL. The white tee is $29.95.

The tee shirt below is $27.95.

This print comes unframed for $24.95, or framed for $219.95.

There is also a wide range of merchandise featuring favorite Disney characters as well as items that can be found at other locations on property.

There is also an assortment of items from the Rose and Crown Pub, located in the United Kingdom pavilion in World Showcase.

 I bought 2 things. The tee-shirt pictured up in the first photo up at the top, for $27.95.

I also bought this Limited Release pin for my wife. This was $14.95.

There were a couple of Annual Pass pins, but they have already sold out!

For tons more Disney fun, follow Nick on all his social media sites!  Disney Musings Blog, on Twitter, on Facebook, On Instagram, On Pinterest.

View of Cinderella Castle from Main Street U.S.A.

At Walt Disney World, No One Cares

Viking-RaymondThe way we vacation at Walt Disney World is different than anyplace else we visit.  We’re much more inclined to be fun-filled and relaxed.  We feel ageless – we can just be ourselves without worrying what anyone else will think about our antics.  We’re not alone.  We’re among other Disney fans who completely understand our passion!  We can throw off our worries and cares for a bit while we remember what it was like to work hard all day at…playing.

At Walt Disney World, No One Cares

If you eat dessert first.  No problem!  Grab a churro and a Mickey Premium Ice Cream Bar and call it lunch.  If ever there was a place to relax your diet standards, this is it.  I’ve always wondered what would happen if I asked for that scrumptious banana bread pudding at ‘Ohana to be brought out first?  I think I’m going to try it and see!IMG_3785 DSCN3085

If you cry on Main Street.  Raise your hand if you’ve teared up during Wishes or over that elated feeling when you first see Cinderella Castle.  It’s okay!  You’re not alone.  One time, I sat next to a young woman who cried hysterically during the Festival of Fantasy Parade.

If you geek out over your favorite character.  Yes, grown men and women wait in line for character meet-and-greets all the time.  There’s no judgement here.  My loving Donald does not make me immature or odd.  It makes me happy! RM-Army-man-selfie

If you act your shoe size (not your age).  Wear an Earhat!  Sport your pin-trading lanyard with pride!  Be excited about parades, rides, attractions, and shows.  Search for Hidden Mickeys!  If every member of your group wears matching tee shirts, you’ll fit right in with dozens of other families doing the same thing.  At home, your Goofy hat or Yoda backpack might garner some strange looks, but at Walt Disney World, it makes you look cool.Star Wars Shopping at Disney's Hollywood Studios

If you look a mess.  If there’s one place you don’t have to worry about your appearance, it’s at Disney World.  It’s hot or rainy (or both), you may be soaked from Splash Mountain or Kali River Rapids! You can wear shorts and a tee shirt nearly everywhere and fit right in.  Bad hair is practically mandatory.  I particularly enjoy the look I achieve from the Tower of Terror / Rock’n’ Roller Coaster double whammy!PeopleMover

There’s a lesson here for our children.  There will be times in life when we need to be serious, professional, somber, or sedate and there will be times when we can (and should) kick up our heels and embrace the FUN!  What are your favorite ways to have a great time at Disney World?


My Disney Pin Addiction

General Dis Pics 12.26 009I haven’t posted about pin trading in quite some time.  You’d think this meant that my interest in collecting Disney pins had waned, wouldn’t you?  The exact opposite is true, actually, I’m slightly ashamed that after all this time, my love for Disney pin collecting is a strong as ever.

It started long ago and innocently enough.  What a fun way for our whole family to buy a few relatively inexpensive souvenirs and interact with Cast Members for pin trading.  Those first few pins lead to pin lanyards – a gateway to entire pin sets.  Before long, I was hooked.

My Disney Pin Addiction

ME!  The woman who discouraged her children from collecting Pokémon cards and Beanie Babies.  We were buying more and more for trading and collecting!  I bought expensive pin sets and traded them all away.  Pins I couldn’t live without joined the ranks of the growing legion of pins in our pin binder.  The binder filled up.  Still, the number of pins kept growing.General Dis Pics 11.13 093

It’s not like Walt Disney World makes resistance easy; pin kiosks are everywhere.  Free-standing kiosks in every park, specialty pin shops, pin boards everywhere.  Worse, when I signed up online for runDisney events, pins to commemorate each event could be purchased during the race registration process.  Of course, I had to have them.Princess-Half-Marathon-Pin-2015

It was bad enough that special pins were available for the Disney Magic’s inaugural cruise through the fjords of Norway (no way could I pass those up), but a special evening event for pin trading with the ship’s officers was part of the itinerary!  Anna-and-Elsa-PinWe skipped dessert to make this event on time.  Annnnd…it was worth it!  Awesome, unusual pins to choose from and fresh lanyards for the Cast Members were distributed at regular intervals.  Before long we’d made new friends and collected quite a few more pins to treasure.

As I understand it, the first step to recovery is to admit you have a problem.RM-Jessica-Pin

I’m admitting nothing.  I have a few Disney pins.  I might, from time to time, pick up a few more here and there.  I can stop anytime I want to.

What Disney items do you collect?