Let's Brush The Dust Off

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LET’S BRUSH THE DUST OFF!

Hey, how have you been? That’s awesome. Oh, I’ve been doing okay. Still getting back into a good rhythm since the last time I posted on this space (which was just about two months ago!!) I spent some time doing a lot of self-reflection, getting a bit of my personal life in order, and recently got back from a week long vacation at Disney World —I’ll be talking about the trip in a later post.

So, what’s going to happen with this space? Well, your girl is gonna attempt to give it one last good go. I’ve got a personal goal in mind for the remainder of the year regarding this blog (I won’t share it until I do my year in review so let’s see if I keep it up until then eh?) Biggest thing I have decided to do is focus this blog a bit more. Previously, I was just trying to do ALL THE THINGS but I’ve realized that while I have a lot of things that I am interested in that doesn’t mean I’m passionate enough to write about them.

With that said, I’ll be focusing this blog on one of my major loves: Disney! You’re probably thinking “but what about your art, crafts, books, etc?! Don’t you love talking about them?!” and you will be pleasantly surprised to learn that none of that changes! I have a ton of books on my TBR list that are related to Disney’s take on fairy tales, lots of movies I want to talk about under the Disney brand, I’ve started some brainstorming on new art projects, and even some cross stitching stuff. Now this doesn’t mean I won’t talk about some of my other geeky loves (like Harry Potter, Pokemon, or movies that really excite me), I just realized after getting back from Disney World that I tried to fit myself into a ton of different buckets but when I sat down for a moment in my office I looked around and realized that everything on my walls was Disney related (Funkos, Minnie Ears, and even art) so making it one of the primary focuses of the blog just made so much sense.

I also had a realization that every time I would try to push to do more things outside of my day job I would start panicking as if all of my time HAD to be spent on my day job. That is such a toxic mindset to have and after spending so much time at Disney World and just completely tuning out of work I can finally say that I’ve given myself a little break through. There are so many women I look up to who tackle lots of personal projects while also kicking butt at their day jobs. There is zero reason why I can’t do the same.

So here’s to new beginnings and to bringing just a little bit of magic to your day.

♡ Mana

Disneyland Trip - September 2017

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Disneyland is my happy place and as a kid at heart it is the one place I will always choose if asked where I want to go for vacation. There is just something about Disney that just makes you not want to care about what is going on in the outside world once you step on Disney property. 

This trip was much needed as I had been having trouble disconnecting my brain from work to the point where it has been unhealthy on a mental/physical/emotional level. This was the first time we've gone while they have been in the midst of finalizing set up for Fall / Halloween in the parks. It was really interesting seeing the park change little by little every day, though we missed the actual celebrations by two days. 

We are definitely contemplating a return visit in October to see everything all Halloween-ed out but until then I'll remember my fun-filled days of just hanging out at the park, enjoying delicious food, and shopping for sweet merch. Below are photos I took featuring merch and food I enjoyed while there. I'll be posting another blog going over my Disneybounds for the time that I was there so keep an eye out! 

First up is our evening at Cafe Orleans. This was the first time we've ever eaten there and we decided to do it due to the Fantasmic dining package (it has fantastic preferred dining viewing of the show.) 

No trip is complete without a stop at the Cove Bar. Since the renovation and extension, the wait time for the line has reduced significantly. We waited a short 30 mins before we were seaterd and had some delicious drinks and food (the latter of which I was so hungry I didn't photograph). We also made a stop at Trader Sam's, it was under renovation so the full menu of drinks wasn't available but we still got some good drinks and eats!

Next up was dining at Carthay Circle (always a must for preferred dining viewing of World of Color).

Our dining adventures ended as they always do, with a trip to Napa Rose. It's become a tradition for us to have dinner at Napa Rose to complete our magical Disney vacation. We always do the four course as its super filling. 

As always it was a magical trip to Disneyland with lots of good food, drinks, and great friends. What are some of your favorite Disney park memories? 

♡ Mana

Oh gawrsh it's been a while

Hey blog, how have you been? I have been a bit busy...or rather that is the excuse I would normally give. The truth is that I had let some folks bully me into hiding and being scared to share my thoughts on this space or to be creative in general. After taking a short break to go to my happy place (Disneyland) and a short staycation I took time to think and realized that it's time for me to get back into doing the things that I love. 

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Since my last blog (which was back in April) I have gone to Playlist Live in Orlando, EA Play in LA, VidCon in Anaheim, and hosted a two-day event at work. I have also gone to Disneyland twice in the span of  4 months and made a short trip to Disney World for a day while I was in Orlando. I'll be doing a separate blog about those trips over the next week or so. 

I have also completed a few more outlines from my Pokemon cross stitch project though I, admittedly, need to pick up the pace as I am lagging behind significantly. I am hoping to finish the outlines of the first 151 (plus Alola varients) before the end of the year so I can go all in on the colors in the new year. 

Another thing that happened: I reached "Affiliate" status on Twitch. I haven't streamed since I got affiliate because I have no idea what I want my emotes to be and so now my brain is thinking about the "long game" when it comes to this stuff. I don't plan on changing emotes completely as I'd rather just update the look of an emote than remove one outright. I've just never given it much thought as to what I would theme my channel around...probably Disney and Karaoke >.> WHO KNOWS. 

Looking forward to getting back into blogging, streaming, making more YT videos, and just overall being creative!

♡ Mana

My Spring Vacation Haul!

The boo and I went on vacation down to LA to visit Universal with some friends (my first time to the one in Hollywood and his last visit was when he was 9 years old!) and then we travelled over to Anaheim to spend the remaining days in the happiest place on earth: Disneyland. 

I, of course, spent way too much money on some goodies but this time around I tried to be practical with my spending and taking the time to walk around and think about the things I was buying before going up to the register. Let's go over what I purchased (without adding in the cost because it would just make me cry.)

UNIVERSAL: 

From left to right:

  • Eeveelution Purse (Purchased at Citywalk)

  • Set of 4 Pokemon Pins

  • Harry Potter Hogwarts Houses Keychain

  • Death Eater Patch

  • 2 Pack of Deathly Hallows mini notebooks

  • Minions Week View Calendar

  • Luna Lovegood Interactive Wand (her second wand)

  • Gryffindor Notebook with metal crest

  • Gryffindor Bookmark

  • Gryffindor Red Leather Notebook

  • Hogwarts Houses Mini Pins

  • Minions Mousepad To-do List

  • Minions To-do List Notebook

DISNEY PARKS:

From left to right:

  • Aladdin VHS Notebook

  • Hidden Mickeys Location Book

  • Mickey Mouse Rainbow and Black mini backpack with fuzzy Mickey zipper charm

  • Mickey Icecream Pin

  • Mickey Oh Boy Pin

  • Disney Parks Trashcan Highlighter Set

  • New Mickey Mouse Cartoon Pen set

  • Metal 3-D Puzzle

    • Haunted Mansion (Gift for a friend)

    • Cinderella Castle

    • Sleeping Beauty Castle

    • Disney Parks Monorail

    • Space Mountain

    • Mickey's Fun Wheel

There were a few items that weren't pictured that I purchased, will mix both parks for this one since it's not a lot. 

  • Gryffindor Zip Up Hoodie

  • Gray Disneyland Hoodie

  • Black Disneyland Varsity Sweater

  • Lion King VHS Notebook

  • Several new postcard art prints (will show my collection in a future post)

Overall my trip down to SoCal was a huge success and I had a lot of fun meeting new friends, seeing old ones, and just being surrounded by my happy place. Remember to always believe in magic and take the time to have fun!

♡ Mana

Top 5 Tuesday: Favorite Disney Movies

If there is one subject I'm guaranteed to talk your ear off about it is Disney. Today I wanted to chat a bit about one area in particular that I do get asked about: Movies. In particular, what is my FAVORITE Disney movie. Instead of just naming one I thought I'd take the time to give my Top 5 because while number one is still my all time favorite, others on this list are just as amazing. 


At number five we have 'The Little Mermaid'. While it is not one of my particular favorites I do enjoy watching it over and over again. I resonate with how Ariel wants to know more about the world and explore all it has to offer. My all time favorite line from this movie "I'm sixteen years old, I'm not a child!" GURRLLLLLLL let's be real now, you are totally acting like a child the minute you say something like that. 

I am looking forward to a live action version of this if and when it becomes a thing. 


Big Hero 6 comes in at number four and man does it just put you through a roller coaster of emotions! I watched it again last night (as of writing this blog) and it still makes me laugh - cry - get angry at all the same moments no matter how many times I've watched it. It's also visually stunning and just makes me say "wow!" every single time.


Of course there was going to be a Disney animal movie in this and my all time favorite hands down (and coming in at number three on my list) is Lady and the Tramp. I am a sucker for dog movies and this just did a great job of explaining the loyalty and love of an animal while also pointing out that not every animal is well off. 

It didn't hit me till I was older but they really slide in the "one night stand" thing pretty freaking smoothly. Hinting at romantic relations without screaming it in your face, totally perfect. 


THIS MOVIE. THIS FREAKING MOVIE. Coming in at number 2 (and at times almost beating out number one) is Tinkerbell and the Legend of the Neverbeast. I know a lot of people just brush off the Tinkerbell movies like they are nothing because they do go direct to DVD / Bluray but man you REALLY need to watch them. The stories are amazing and the animation is out of this world for a direct to DVD / Bluray film. 

This story in particular focuses on the fairy Fawn (who I resonate a lot with) who is a friend of Tinkerbell's and the monster she discovers and names Gruff. I am going to give a warning: THIS MOVIE WILL SCREW WITH YOUR EMOTIONS. DO NOT WATCH WHILE EVEN SLIGHTLY DRUNK / BUZZED.


Forever at number one is Beauty and the Beast. I love this movie SOOOOO MUCH. Belle is still my favorite princess, when I got to meet her at Disneyland I had to keep it together because I wanted to cry (and that was less than a year ago.) Belle's love of books and the epic stories they hold really resonates with me as a lover of books. I always joke that my love of books rivals my love for Disney / Harry Potter. 

To those who might be wondering: YES, I AM excited about the live action movie and was SO happy to hear that Emma Watson was going to play Belle. I think she is going to be perfect for this role (and secretly I had been hoping for this for years since the end of the Harry Potter movies.) 

While at this moment I feel that number one and two on this list are there forever I am always blown away with how well Disney Animation has been doing lately that things could always change for the other three placements. What are some of your favorite Disney movies? 

♡ Mana