A New Adventure on the Horizon

So it’s been a little while since we’ve updated things here on our blog. It’s been a really crazy time. We moved into a new apartment right after Christmas, transferred to new positions, had the rest of our furniture brought to us, spent time with multiple family members and friends and tried to figure out what future plans we might need to make. Adam has been doing auditions and looking at performing and teaching. We’ve been looking at a lot of different career options for both of us. And one of those options led me (Wendi) to apply to grad school at Florida State University.

As fate would have it (I’m sure it was strictly fate and had nothing to do with the fact that I worked my rear off in school and took advantage of all of many different opportunities and the fantastic support I had from some truly great and encouraging people), I got accepted into my program! I’m going to be attending FSU to complete my Master of Arts degree in Arts Administration-Music. I’ve also been given an incredible Graduate Assistantship which will cover my tuition and provide me with a stipend to help with living expenses as well.

When I decided to go back for my Bachelor Degree in Vocal Performance, I did so knowing I would end up going on to receive a Masters and possibly a Doctorate. I worked hard during my time as a performance major and took advantage of a variety of performing and production opportunities. I looked outside of the school to find even more chances to learn and develop. I knew that as a less-than-conventional student, I would need to work harder and find different avenues to get me where I wanted to go.

To be honest, I wasn’t 100% sure where I wanted to go. But I knew I loved music, I loved teaching and I loved helping other people enjoy the arts. Becoming an arts administrator makes sense for me. As part of my Graduate Assistantship, I will work with community engagement for the College of Music. This is something I am just so excited for. I want to help our communities understand how important the arts are! I want people to see how much more enriched life is with music and art and theater. I want kids to become passionate about watching, listening to and enjoying artistic offerings. And I want to play a role in the arts being an integral part of our civilization for a LONG time!

Like every journey, I had hecklers on the sidelines who told me I would be limited. People who didn’t believe I could do it. Or people who wanted to limit what “it” was. You know what, those people just made me work harder.  I took me a little bit before I realized that no one else got to measure my success but me. However, once I did, it was incredibly liberating. When obstacles were thrown up in front of me, I climbed over them, and in some case just plowed right through. I’m sure there are still plenty of skeptics out there. But, frankly…I really just don’t care.

And of course I wouldn’t have made it anywhere without my untiring cheerleaders. Thank heavens for friends who made me stop and enjoy some ice cream or a movie. I was lucky to have a couple of extra supportive teachers that encouraged me to reach further than I thought I could. My parents have helped us so much with housing during our Utah degrees and unending support while we’ve been in Orlando. And of course, Adam has been nothing but encouraging the whole time.

Getting an education shouldn’t be easy. Learning new things shouldn’t be simple. And your career isn’t something that should just be handed to you. Because I’ve had to work and fight for where I am, I have learned so many valuable lessons that I know will help me as I continue to learn and grow and progress down this path. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, right? Well, right now I’m feeling like freaking Iron Man.

Figuring Out Your Self-Care Routine

Disclaimer: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links meaning that at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

Life is hard. Let’s just put that right out there. Fixing dinner, doing laundry, cleaning the house, working, grocery shopping, kids and all that entails….and at some point you probably should try to sleep. Burnout is a real thing and doctors tell us that stress can kill you. But all of those things I listed are not things you can just stop doing. That list contains necessary To Do’s. Sure you can call in sick to work every once in a while. And yeah, you could let your house get a little messy on some days. But you’re always going to have to go back to your routine. So what is this routine missing? A little time for you!

Let’s talk Self-Care…


I’m not talking about planning yourself a vacation and escaping reality for weeks on end and leaving your responsibilities behind. I’m talking about designating 30 minutes every day to doing something your WANT to do! So now you have to decide…what do you want to do with your 30 minutes? Hmmmm…

A couple of months ago I found myself in a really deep funk. I was stressed out from work and life and I was getting older and it was all spiraling. Normally, I would have found some stress relief by sitting down at the piano and playing some favorite pieces or belting my guts out to a musical theater tune. BUT right now, we’re without our piano and I don’t want to disrupt our neighbors with a medley of showtunes. So with my normal outlet across the country in storage, what was I going to do? 

I started thinking about my other hobbies. To be honest, they’ve all been DESPERATELY neglected while I’ve been pursuing my education and working and figuring out adult life (ugh!). I had to think WAY BACK to what I used to enjoy doing when I felt like I had free time. I loved reading. I used to consume books the way I eat White Fudge Oreos at Christmas. But who has time for recreational reading these days? I mean, I’m far too busy taking BuzzFeed quizzes. I also collected materials a few years ago to try to learn Brush Lettering and Calligraphy. And then that fizzled out…because how could I possibly practice my handwriting when I need to memorize all of the Marvel Avengers movies? 

What did I do? I pulled out a book to read. I gathered up all of my markers and papers and decided to start learning something new. Being the practical person that I am, I decided to come up with ways to use my new hobby. I’ve found ways to display the things I’m working on so I have incentive to actually finish projects. Here’s a look at my first one…


As I worked on my projects, I started to remember back when I was a kid. I had a small calligraphy set, stamps, embossing stuff, markers…all kinds of things. I loved doing this kind of stuff! I would make cards and stationary and practice my lettering. I think I thought that as I grew up, I grew out of the things I enjoyed. But that’s just dumb! I still love Disney! I still love reading! I still love sci-fi/fantasy things! And I still love fancy writing and crafting! 

We don’t need to “re-invent” ourselves over and over as we get older. Quite the contrary! We need to stay connected to our roots and our youth! The things that made us “us” as kids, still play a big role when we’re adults! We’ve recently re-discovered our mutual love of puzzles. So we bought a Christmas puzzle! I think we’ll regularly have a puzzle going on at our house! Going along with the puzzle theme, we love legos. So we get each other legos for Christmas. It’s just one of the things we do! Legos aren’t just for kids! They’re fun for adults too! 


Enjoying things that we loved as kids doesn’t make us less responsible as adults! It makes us able to continue to cope with the hardships of adulthood because it helps us hold on to that child-like innocence and hope. And we all need more of that as adults! 

I want you to think really hard…What did you love doing as a kid that you can use for your Self-Care now as an adult?

If you’re interested in getting started with hand-lettering, I can make a few suggestions based on my experience as a beginner!

Tombow Fudenosuke pens are great to begin with! They are what are called “small tip” pens and are easier to learn how to maneuver. 

This is my favorite lettering for beginners book! I’ve looked at a lot! And I’ve tried a lot of the free pages you can find on Pinterest. This book is so great! It has practice pages PLUS tracing papers! You’ll get so much practice with this! And it’s really affordable! This is the link for small pens. If you go the large pen route, she has one for that as well.

These are the large tips that I have. They’re nice, but affordable markers. They’re also watercolor markers so you can be extra creative with your writing.

Your brush pens are happiest on really smooth paper. So try out a Rhodia pad!


Christmas Decorating on a Budget

Christmas time is my favorite time! I love the sights, the smells, the foods, the EVERYTHING about Christmas! I’m one of those people who likes to decorate early, blast the Christmas tunes and bake cookies all day long.

This year, we’re 2000 miles away from our friends, family and Christmas decorations. But we just love Christmas so much and being so far from “home” isn’t helped by a dreary brown and beige apartment with absolutely zero Christmas spirit. Since we’re poor Disney College Program interns, we needed to figure out a way to find some Christmas Cheer while on a very limited budget. I’ve gotta say, I’m exceptionally proud of how it all turned out!


My first stop was our local Dollar Store. You’re familiar with these. They have various names: Dollar Store, Dollar Tree, All-a-Dollar….etc. I set myself a budget of $50 for the whole decorating project. So I walked into the Dollar Tree with a mission! Our Christmas tree is back in Utah as well, so I needed one of those too.

I checked out the Christmas trees at the Dollar Tree, but they looked sadder than Charlie Brown’s tree.

charlie brown tree

So I opted to gather ornaments and stockings and other decorating materials at the Dollar Tree and then head to Target in the hopes of finding an affordable, but happier looking tree. I ended up with 2 tubes of small round ornaments (red and gold), 6 clear ornaments, a spool of ribbon, some Modge Podge, a sheet of fake snow, one string of multicolored lights and 2 stockings. I ended up spending just over $16.


Target came through for me with a cute little 3 foot pre-lit tree for $20. BAM! I stopped at Joann’s and I grabbed some glitter glue for $3.50 after a coupon. I finished off my decorating errands with a trip to Michaels to get some small round sparkly balls to go with one of my DIY projects. And I paid $3 for those. Seriously I rocked this project. At $42.50, I came in UNDER BUDGET!!!

When I decided I wanted to decorate on a budget, I knew I wanted the end result to reflect who we are and the things we love. So I bought plain ornaments and then spruced them up myself.

With the big clear balls, I printed Christmas music, tore it into strips and used the Modge Podge to layer the strips on the ornaments. Music is such a big part of our lives and it’s been hard to be away from the piano and performing for the last 6 months. I love that it’s represented on our little tree.

Disney is also a big deal for us. So using the red and gold sparkly ornaments and the small red balls I bought at Michaels, I created my own Mickey ornaments.


I used the glitter glue to decorate a few of the ornaments, including one commemorating our time with the Disney College Program this year.

And because I’ve been working on my hand-lettering hobby, I decided to hand-letter some Christmas words on some of the other glass ornaments.


I’m seriously so proud of my thriftiness, craftiness and festiveness. And that’s just the tree!

At home we usually have a Christmas village and it’s one of my favorite things. I decided to be extra creative to get us one this year. I let Adam’s creativity out and assigned him to create a LEGO village. We already had a couple of Lego Christmas sets. I used our Disney Lego characters as the villagers and augmented the building and such with some random Legos. I laid down the fake snow sheet and wrapped the colored lights around the perimeter and VOILA!

I think people often think that nice looking things have to cost a lot of money. That’s just not true. Anyone on any budget can have nice looking things. It took me a little bit of time to make these things, but honestly not that much. And I enjoyed it! It was so fun to use different skills and to ultimately have decorations that are 100% representations of our personalities and life! And while this little tree was crafted as a sort of stand-in for this year, I’m going to use it again and again! And I can’t wait to add some of these handmade ornaments to our bigger tree next year!

Black Friday Shopping Guide for Beginners

I know some of you are thinking “Black Friday is the worst and I’m going to die and no discount is worth that!”

I am here to tell you that not only is it survivable, but it can be super fun! I’ve been Black Friday shopping since I was about 12 years old. My mom, aunt, grandma, sister and then later, sisters in law, have a tradition of going shopping. And we love it! It’s a fun way for us to spend time together. And now the little kids love it because they get to hang out together with Grandpa and whatever uncles don’t go shopping. Living in a different state this year, I’m sad to report I’m missing out on the big Black Friday Shopping party. But my brother will be in town and we’re going to go to a few stores together!

Basically, 20+ years of Black Friday Shopping makes me pretty qualified to give you some tips if this is the year you try to venture out. So get ready to save money and have some fun!


Step 1: Look Through the Ads

The Ads are usually posted online a few weeks before the actual date. When it gets closer you can find them on the retailer websites. But if you want to find them all in one place, check out this Black Friday website.

Step 2: Compare your Christmas Lists to the Ads

There might be a lot of attractive deals in those Ads. Don’t be tempted to over-spend by buying things you don’t need. Make sure you compare your Christmas Lists to what is on sale in the ads. If your family has been looking for an Amazon Echo Dot, there’s one at Target, Walmart, Kohl’s…and more. Which leads us to-

Step 3: Write out your Shopping Lists

This one is important. As you’re comparing your lists, write down all of the items you’re interested at each store. Be sure and write what time each store opens! Here are what mine look like…


Some years you might have a lot of things to shop for. I happened to do a bunch of my shopping, specifically for my nieces and nephews, earlier. So I don’t have toys or anything like that to put on my list. But you can see that my Target list is longer. Although, I did list out movies on Target and not on Walmart.

Step 4: Prioritize

Look at the stores you’re interested in going to…which one opens first? If a few open at the same time, which one has the deal you NEED to get or Christmas will be ruined? Are there any of these deals you can get online when the stores launch their online Black Friday deals?

SIDE NOTE: Online deals can start any time in November. Walmart and Black Friday roll out online deals throughout the month. Same with Amazon. Most retailers will withhold the big DOORBUSTERS until Thursday at 12:01 am.

Step 5: Shopping Avengers, Assemble

This is always a little easier if you have a group you shop with. If there’s more than one of you, you can divide and conquer. One can head to movies, the other to toys, and yet another to electronics. You share lists and get what you all need. And then you meet back at the checkout and whoever is done first gets in line because sometimes those can get LOOONG.


Make sure you do your research and figure out if the things you want to buy are really a great discount. Sometimes they look like good deals, but actually the store sells them for that price pretty regularly.

I promise this can be a fun adventure full of saving money and spending time with friends! It can even turn into a fun tradition! If you’ve been reluctant to try it out, ease in a bit. Go Friday morning and scope out the movies that are left at Target after the big rush. We’ve done this before and found quite a few gems remaining and most places have their deals last until 1 pm Friday. Or dip your toe in by shopping online this year.

I want to hear about your favorite Black Friday Adventures! Or tell me what your Black Friday concerns are and maybe I can help you out!


Look Younger with These Beauty Products

I had a birthday last month. Whenever people ask me how old I am, I usually first respond with, “I’m older than I look.” And I smirk a little because of how proud I am that people can NEVER guess how old I am. And then I when I reveal that I am 36 years old, people immediately put on their shocked faces and demand to see some identification as proof. It’s really the only thing that gets me through my birthdays. I know that I’m going to turn 40 and everyone will think I’m 10 years younger. I can definitely handle that.

I’ve had a lot of people ask what my secret is. I’m about to reveal to you what my “secret “ is. But I want you to know, I have pretty good genes too. My mom has aged pretty well herself so, I definitely started a little ahead of the game.


But what my genes don’t handle, I leave to Mary Kay Cosmetics. Mary Kay has been around for over 50 years, so it’s likely you’ve all heard of it. Maybe you or your mom have been to a Mary Kay pampering party. Maybe you’ve even tried their products for a bit, but then stopped…for whatever reason. Well, I’ve been using Mary Kay products for near 15 years now. I’ll tell you right now that I don’t use exclusively Mary Kay. I supplement with other things. I like to try new products from different lines to see how they compare. Sometimes I stick with my Mary Kay, sometimes I switch brands. 

But the majority of my skincare routine is Mary Kay. And because of this, I actually became a Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultant abut 13 years ago. I don’t have much of a salesperson personality and so for the most part, I have ordered for myself and for friends and family. But since I’ve had so many ask recently about my skincare routine and since it’s become that much more important with a job where I stand outside for 10 hours a day, I thought I’d share some of my MUST HAVES with you all.

DISCLAIMER: I will absolutely include links of all of these products. They’ll direct you to my personal Mary Kay website. If you already have a Mary Kay Beauty Consultant, please contact her and order your products, but if you don’t, I’d love to help you out! And at the end of this post, I’ll even tell you how you can earn some free product!

TimeWise Miracle 3D Set- 4 Products- $110

The TimeWise Miracle Set 3D® defends, delays and delivers for younger-looking skin. This full-spectrum, three-dimensional approach helps minimize the appearance of skin aging.

Set Includes:

  • TimeWise® Age Minimize 3D™ 4-in-1 Cleanser
  • TimeWise® Age Minimize 3D™ Day Cream SPF 30 Broad Spectrum Sunscreen**
  • TimeWise® Age Minimize 3D™ Night Cream
  • TimeWise® Age Minimize 3D™ Eye Cream

Every product features our Age Minimize 3D™ Complex, including encapsulated resveratrol, vitamin B3 and an age-defying peptide.

I have tried A LOT of cleanser/moisturizer combinations. I always come back to this one. It always makes me feel clean, and I definitely need the SPF 30 in the Day Cream since I spend all day outside. And I love the daily anti-aging benefits. Full disclosure, I don’t use the Age Minimize 3D Eye Cream. But I’ve heard it’s a good one. I do use a different Mary Kay eye cream and I’ll talk about that later.

Buy it HERE


TimeWise Repair Volu-Fill Deep Wrinkle Filler- $45

Targeted formula immediately fills in deep wrinkles and helps improve their appearance over time.

  • 100% of women showed an improvement in the appearance of wrinkle severity.*
  • Significantly impacts the appearance of all six wrinkle zones.**
  • Deep wrinkles appear to be visibly plumped.
  • Deep wrinkles are targeted by retinol.
  • Won’t flake or ball up. Dries to an invisible finish.

This is one of my favorite products. It’s new in the last couple of years. I use it on my forehead expression lines (they’re wrinkles, but I like using “expression lines” because it makes me feel less old). I can definitely tell when I run out and haven’t had a chance to order more. I try not to let that happen. I’m absolutely one of the 100% of women that saw improvement in the appearance of wrinkle severity! 

Buy it HERE

TimeWise Repair Volu-Firm Eye Renewal Cream- $42

Reawaken tired eyes and give them a lifted look.

  • Targets deep lines, wrinkles and sagging skin.
  • Targets undereye bags, puffiness and dark circles.
  • Targets crepiness and dry skin.
  • Increases skin moisture for 12 hours.
  • Features a unique liquid crystal delivery system that helps enhance effectiveness.
  • Contains the benefits of the Volu-Firm® Complex.

THIS IS THE EYE CREAM! This is the eye cream that changed my life. It helps with ALL THE THINGS!!! If I were going to tell you to buy one Mary Kay product, this is the one. Seriously. I always make sure I have one of these on hand for myself. 

Buy it HERE

Holiday Gifting_Skin Care_Post 4

Mary Kay Foundation Primer Sunscreen SPF 15- $18

This lightweight gel glides on easily to fill in imperfections and dries quickly to a matte finish to create the perfect canvas for a flawless foundation application that enhances foundation benefits and extends wear.

  • Oil-free formula with SPF 15* is mineral-enriched to absorb oil and diffuse light to help reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and pores.
  • For all skin types, including sensitive skin.
  • Fragrance-free, dermatologist-tested and non-comedogenic.
  • Can be used with any Mary Kay® foundation.

This primer is a great consistency and dries well and helps keep my makeup in place and has SPF 15. What more could you need? It’s a good price too.

Buy it HERE

Mary Kay Mineral Powder Foundation- $20

Mary Kay® Mineral Powder Foundation is a weightless, skin-perfecting powder that makes lines, wrinkles and other imperfections seem to disappear. You get the coverage of a foundation with the comfort of a powder.

  • Buildable coverage blends effortlessly with the sweep of a brush for a flawless look.
  • Long-wearing, transfer-resistant formula won’t fade away by midday.
  • Controls shine and imparts a matte finish.

I’ve also tried multiple kinds of mineral powder foundation. I really love this one. The shades match well. The formula doesn’t get clumpy. It’s goes on evenly and smooths out fine lines and wrinkles. And it doesn’t settle into those wrinkles! 

Buy it HERE

New Products- Chromafusion Color

Chromafusion is BRAND NEW! In fact, it just released on the day I’m publishing this blog post!

Color Without Compromise
“Get ready to live your life colorfully with makeup that wears through work, workouts, weather, whatever! The NEW Mary Kay Chromafusion™ Collection features superpowered technology for gorgeous shades that last all day. Think eye shadows, blush, highlighter, and contour powders – all with a lifeproof formula that lets you face whatever is on your agenda beautifully.”

Shop at these links:

Eye Color

Cheek Color

Contour and Highlighter

Pro Palette


Want to stay in the loop on all of the amazing products and deals for my Mary Kay Customers? Join my Facebook Group and Page!

If you are interested in trying any of the products, just let me know! I can send you samplers! I’m even happy to help you host a Facebook party! We can send samples to your friends all over the United States and try them all together. This can help you earn some free products! Just join my Facebook Group and let me know!

Every Order gets free samples and orders over $50 qualify for free shipping!

If you’re interested in regular Mary Kay emails(and don’t have a Mary Kay Beauty Consultant), go to my website and sign up as a new customer!


Eating Our Way Around the World With Visitors

Hey all! This is Wendi! A few weeks ago, my parents came out to visit for a week. It was so fun to have them here and we tried a lot of new things, including the Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue, Hollywood & Vine Character Dining, and Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party. And I’ve got posts or videos (make sure you subscribe to our YouTube Channel) about all of these coming down the pipeline. Here is our MNSSHP video!

But today, I wanted to talk about all of the new Epcot Food and Wine dishes we tried while they were here. They did a good job of filling up their Festival Passports and we added some new stickers to ours as well!

You guys, we ate SO MUCH FOOD when my parents were here. I’m going to give you a brief overview of a few of them. Some of these even made our Best of the Festival list! So in no particular order here are the things I remember about all the foods…


The Filet Mignon in Canada was AMAZING! Guys, I seriously could put this with a PLASTIC KNIFE!!! I don’t know if I’ve ever had such a good piece of meat. It’s a festival regular so I will be looking forward to it every year now!

One of Adam’s favorite dishes was the Steakhouse Blended Burger from Earth Eats. He’s had this at least one other time since my parents’ visit. I had a bite and was surprised that the Brie Cheese Fondue seemed mild. Brie Cheese is not my favorite. The flavors in this one really came together. I’m not a burger fan and I kind of liked this one. And Adam loved it.


Let’s talk about the Brazilian Cheese Bread. It is the strangest consistency and I want to study it. We were really excited because we love cheese and it was gluten free. And we always get excited when Adam kind eat any kind of bread that is gluten free and not have to wait an additional 10 minutes. I’m still not entirely sure what these were. They didn’t feel or taste like bread. The good news is that they are a festival regular too. I can spend next year figuring it out.

Adam was a little disappointed in the macaroni and cheese. I didn’t like how many green onions were on it. Seriously he smelled onion-y for the rest of the day. I have a very sensitive nose.

I’m a big fan of the regular cinnamon sugar croissant donut that is served at the Refreshment Port in Epcot. So when they announced a whole booth of croissant donuts, I was pretty excited. I tried the chocolate hazelnut (*coughNutellacough*) version. It was tasty. The topping was smooth. The donut was flaky. Frankly, I like the regular cinnamon sugar one better. That might surprise my brother whose chocolate frosting I used to steal off his donuts and cakes when we were little. But that’s the truth.

In addition to eating things, we had a few other Festival adventures. First, we picked up our Annual Passholder cutting boards! Disney had these for Annual Passholders who visited the festival on 4 different days. They are adorable and I don’t know if we’ll ever use it because I don’t want to cut up or dirty Chef Mickey’s face…but I’m so happy we have it!


Another fun thing we did was the Ratatouille Hide and Squeak. We went around World Showcase and searched for hidden Remys. It was a lot of fun. All four adults did our own. I love these fun activities Epcot has during their festivals. It was $5.99 per map. We did get an Annual Passholder discount, so that was nice. And after filling in the map, we showed it at a designated location and got to collect our prize.


How cute are these cups?!?! They had a Remy cup too, but ran out of it early on due to popularity! And there was also a Minnie cup we could choose from. IMG_1385

All in all, we had such a fun time at the Festival with my parents! We love visitors and hope to keep having more adventures with our friends and family! And next year, come visit during the Food and Wine Festival! Eat all the things with us!


Make sure and check out our other Food and Wine posts.

Disney College Program: To Extend or Not to Extend? That is the question.

This last week Disney College Program extensions became available. For 5 days, the system allowed the Fall and Fall Advantage participants to apply for an extension. This could include an extension for your current role, or a possible transfer to another role. And you have to pay another program fee of $240. (This money goes towards the transportation and events provided while you’re in your program.)

Let’s discuss the reasons you might want to extend:
#1- You are still working on your college degree but want to take another semester off to continue to work at Disney.
#2- You are enjoying your time at Disney, but you aren’t sure if a permanent move is right for you.
#3- You want to move here permanently, but you’re not sure if you’ll be able to get on Part Time or Full Time.

Let’s discuss the reasons extending might not be for you:
#1- You want to make a permanent move to Disney and you’re tired of earning $10/hour.
#2- You want to stay at Disney and you want to be able to start earning your seniority and other perks of statused employment at the company.
#3- You hope to get a performer contract at Disney
#4- You want to go home or somewhere else.

For us, we won’t be extending. We want to stay here long term. We want to be able to audition for parts in shows and not have our program get in the way. We want to be able to apply for jobs and not have our program get in the way. Instead, we will be using Transfer Genie in November to request a transfer to full or part time roles (assuming we don’t get other offers we’re waiting to hear about).

Please make sure you talk to your leaders and discuss your future options! Cultivate relationships with your colleagues and build a network of people who can cheer you on and advise you as you start your Disney career journey!

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