Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Happiest Place on Earth

Hi, my name is Emily and I think I might be addicted to Disney. Okay, okay - who am I kidding? I am addicted to Disney. After all, I'm attempting to run a half marathon because it gives me an excuse to go to Disneyworld (WDW), and I'm contemplating running one in Disneyland (DL) so I can get the special coast to coast medal. But in the grand scheme of things, that isn't too bad, right?

My original Disney friend, Michelle, was going to DL at the end of December with her family and so I decided to tag along. Mainly to see Michelle, but also because I'll take any excuse to go to a Disney park! :) Michelle was the one who introduced me to WDW for my 30th birthday. Wow, was that really almost 3 years ago now?

We met up at LAX (we being me and Michelle's family - Michelle, Jason, Bailey, Reese and Michelle's parents - Janette & Mark), caught the shuttle and were on our way! We were dropped off at our respective hotels with a plan to meet back up at California Adventures. This was going to be my first time at California Adventures! Surprisingly, I've only been to DL a few times and haven't been since CA Adventures was built.

First was lunch, followed by Mike & Sully's Adventure, Playhouse Disney and the end of the HSM3 Pep Rally. And then it was time. Time for what? For me to face my fear.

(This would be when the foreboding music starts playing)

Michelle's favorite ride is Tower of Terror and she has been trying to get me on it since our first trip together. This ride absolutely terrifies me!! I think it is more psychological than anything. Each time I've said, maybe next time, maybe next time. The cajoling of Michelle, my brother and Jana finally got to me and I rode it with Jana last time at WDW, knowing I was still going to need to ride it in DL with Michelle. Jason, Michelle & I headed over to Tower of Terror but before we got in line Jason & Michelle got fast passes. Me? No, once was more than enough for me on this ride. We stood in line with the dread and anticipation building and building. Finally we were there, sitting down, strapped in and ready to go. I closed my eyes, hung on the hand rail for dear life and screamed. And then it was over. My legs were shaking uncontrollably, but I did it!

I should have known once I definitively said, "There is no way in he$$ I am doing this ride more than once!" that I would ride Tower of Terror again. We finished and Jason gallantly gave up his fastpass so I could face my fears and go again. Note to self, always get the fastpass, even if you don't think you will ride it. The elevator door closed, I held on to the handle with all my might and we plunged. The second time was worse! But I faced my fears and lived through it, twice! Riding it with Michelle was (dare I say it) fun. And Michelle - I'm glad you made me ride it & I'm glad I got ride it with you! :)

We met back up with the rest of the group and started over to California Screaming, another rollercoaster which had me a slight bit terrified. But it was actually really smooth, and only had one upside down loop, which I shut my eyes for. California Screaming just might be one of my new favorite rides!

After that it was King Triton's Carousel, Mickey's Fun Wheel, Mulholland Drive, and Soarin' before ending the night eating a corn dog and watching the Electrical Parade. You know how every once in awhile a hot dog just really sounds good? Or is that just me? And a corn dog? But it was really good. After the parade was over it was time for bed.

The next morning, I met up with the crew at their hotel before we caught the monorail over to Disneyland!! Michelle, Bailey & I rode the teacups. Next it was Pinocchio, Pirates, Haunted Mansion (which was decked out like The Nightmare Before Christmas for the holidays) and lunch. Then it was time for Mark to leave (he was going to work on one of the floats for the Rose Parade). We did a little shopping, watched the Christmas Parade and went for a ride with Mr. Toad. It was then time to say goodbye and goodnight to Janette & the girls. Michelle, Jason & I headed back to the park.

One of my favorite rides at DL that isn't at WDW is the Indiana Jones ride. The line was atrocious, so we decided to brave the single rider line, which we were assuming would be much faster than the 110 minute line. We weren't in line for that long when the ride was shut down for mechanical issues. Darn! On our way out, we were given a magical fastpass!! Hm, what to use it on? We did Big Thunder and then opted to use the magical fastpass on Space Mountain. Note to self, when you are trying to get into your seat on Space Mountain fast, don't lower your lap bar until you are ready. This may or may not be from experience. I may have lowered my lap bar before I was fully seated and gotten my leg caught outside the bar and gotten yelled at by the ride operator. I'm not saying it did happen, all I'm saying is that here is a slight possibility it could happen! :)

Next up was the Matterhorn and Pirates before checking out the Indiana Jones situation. The line was operational and had about 105 minute line. We headed for the single rider line and were on our way in a lot less time than 105 minutes!

We finished up the night with the Jungle Cruise and It's A Small World, which was all decked out for the holidays.

What a great trip!! See ya real soon!

Check out more pictures here.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Operation 5 to 10 Update

We're about a month into the new year so it is about time to check in with the goal to lose 5 to 10 lbs by the half marathon! There have been some ups and some downs (possibly more ups than downs!) since I made this goal and I'm now at about a net 6.3lbs to lose by March 7th to get to where I want for the race.

I was at hot yoga on Monday and my favorite instructor (and she was my favorite before this!!) told me I looked like I was losing weight! So while it may not necessarily feel or look like it to me, perhaps there is some change going on. :)

Sunday, January 17, 2010


Sometimes you can start a run and wonder how on earth you are going to make it but you keep going.

Sometimes you are going to walk more than you planned.

Sometimes you have to turn off the stopwatch, because it is going to take as long as it is going to take!

Sometimes you have to suck it up and use the icky, nasty port-o-potty and be very thankful it was there and had toilet paper and soap!

Sometimes a "good job" from a passing runner can motivate you from barely hanging on to run 6 songs to running 9 songs.

Sometimes a High School Musical walk song can put you in a much better mood and ready to tackle the rest of the run.

Sometimes you just keep putting one foot after the other and before you know it you are at mile 7.5 of a 10 mile run.

And sometimes you have to accept a run for what it is, not good, not bad, but rather a building block on the way to 13.1 miles.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Best Laid Plans

Well, I had great plans to update pictures, write up my latest trip report, but it didn't happen. Instead I created this mosaic as a tribute to my Disney trips in 2009, since I visited 3 parks (yes you read that right - 3 parks!!). From left to right it is Walt Disney World, Disneyland Paris, and Disneyland. And if you look carefully - I think I am wearing the same shoes in each foot picture!!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Orange You Glad

I got my Teddy grahams! And more oranges and bananas. Sadly, we are out of Princess fruit snacks. This is our smorgasbord of snacks:

It is kind of a running joke how much liquid I consume during the day. And as you can see from the below picture, I can even drink different types of water, out of different containers at the same time (although I do have to say the Diet Dr. Pepper & the Propel were from yesterday - they just never made it off my desk).

Friday, January 08, 2010

Five Senses Friday #14

Apparently I'm doing theme Five Senses Fridays. Last week was my run at the park and this week's theme would be year-end. It will be a long few weeks, but then life will be back to normal...

* The four "walls" of my cube, spreadsheets, workpapers, numbers, and lots and lots of formulas! And I'm not just talking about at work, these things are invading my dreams!

* My & Jessica's "fun" cd's - we started this a year or so ago, but during a quarter end we each make a cd full of fun songs to keep us pepped up.
* "Dumbledore!" The song from Harry Potter's Puppet Pals & The Mysterious Ticking Noise. If you haven't seen it on YouTube, check it out. It's really funny, especially if you are feeling a bit loopy!

* Way too many snacks - satsumas, goldfish crackers, Princess fruit snacks (we even branched out to Tinkerbell snacks and Nemo snacks but obviously we stuck with a Disney theme!). But you know what sounds good? Teddy grahams! Hm, might have to pick some up tomorrow.
* Caffeine in many different forms - coffee, soda, chocolate

* Satsumas!

* I think I am balancing on the edge of tiredness / adrenaline.
* Let's add in loopy - I'm definitely feeling loopy!
*My quads, because we are taking breaks to walk up the stairs

Friday, January 01, 2010

Five Senses Friday #13

Wow - three posts in three days!! And this is the first post of the new year! But instead of looking back over the past week, it'll mainly be reflecting on my run today.

* Lots of geese and geese poop

* Several cheers: "Way to go!" "Good job" "You can do it"! I realized that there was some sort of race happening and the racers were giving me encouragement. How about that? They are in the midst of their own race, yet they take time to cheer me on. I love it!

* Car exhaust fumes

* Not an eggnog latte, but a caramel brulee latte which helped warm me up after the run.

* Fairly excited that I made it 3 miles today before my first walk break! I'm thinking I need to sign up for a 5K!
* Rain and wind. I woke up to the sound of rain and so I went back to bed and woke up to less rain. For most of it the rain was light, until near the end when the skies opened up a bit. But what is a little bit of rain?