30 Days of Nerdy Hair – Day 5

30 Days of Nerdy Hair Rapunzel from Tangled

30 Days of Nerdy Hair blog post

Day 5: Rapunzel from Tangled

Anytime I get to play Disney Princess is a great day! And this one is particularly fun and easy to do!!!

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Something Magical Happened, But I Can’t Show You

Magical Moments Lizzie blog nerd solo adventure no phone Disney Star Wars fireworks

Last week can only be described as amazing, soul-refreshing and down right exciting. You already saw my solo adventures at not one, but all four of Disney World’s theme parks. But here’s the¬†part I didn’t show you.

I actually can’t show you. See…my phone died right after I ate what looked like a delicious Mickey Mouse shaped pretzel, but really was old tire rubber that had been sitting in the sun since 7am.

Disney Magic blog post nerd

Pretzel notwithstanding, there was magic in the air as I returned to Hollywood Studios, where I’d started my grand adventure.

There has been one other time in recent Disney history that I’ve stayed for the fireworks at the park. And it’s because 2 equally minded, childlike spirits knew as I do just how much magic a fireworks show can hold. I may be overselling this. But the majority of the time when I go to a theme park, at the end of the night, my party is worn out, tired and just wants to beat the traffic. The best way to do that is to skip the fireworks and high tail it out at about 7:30pm. That’s the formula for skipping as much Disney traffic as you can.

But this time it was just me. And traffic, when I have nowhere to go, doesn’t bother me in the least. Especially if I have open windows and a good radio station. Bring on the tail lights!

So I stayed for the fireworks. Specifically the new Star Wars Spectacular at Hollywood Studios cause…well, duh! It’s me! It was always going to be the Star Wars Fireworks show!! I wish I could show it to you, but I’m sorta glad my phone died. I love to share my photos and bring people into my adventures as much as I can. But this was just for me (and the thousands of other people that stayed late too.) You can probably Google the show, find clips on the internet and pictures on Instagram, but I beg you…don’t! Make a plan, if you can, to get to the park and see them live. Let your phone die and live in the magical moment that it absolutely is. I was nearly in tears…it felt that magical. The way the lights and music perfectly complimented my favorite story in the whole wide galaxy…there is really no other word to describe how it felt…it was magic. And I haven’t felt magic like that in a while.

Without a doubt this has been a challenging year. And I have felt, at times lost, at times angry and at times like it wasn’t worth it at all. It’s not true…it’s worth it. It has been worth it the whole time. And not just because of magical fireworks on a balmy Thursday night. I seem to be most attuned to God and myself when I am acting like a kid. I tap into a part of myself that I seem to abandon more often than not these days. She and I used to be much more in sync, but the older I get the farther away she feels.

That magic isn’t lost! In fact I found that magic the very next day when I decided, on a whim, to go paddle boarding off Merritt Island. Another instance of a magic moment that I will just have to keep in my brain because I didn’t bring my phone with me. So this is the only picture I took of the whole adventure:

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It was 11am on a Friday morning. The breeze off the water was perfect and the sun was shining down just enough to give me a nice sun tan/burn glow. I was paddling along by myself, trying to remember how to do it, since it had been a while, when I saw a fin. My heart froze…and I thought “OH SHIT!” Then, I saw another and another. I took a deep breath and¬†the time to notice the shape of the fin and was delighted to see a pod of dolphins headed straight for me. Four adult dolphins and a baby just happily swimming towards the channel and passing me by on their route. I stood in wonder at the sight of them¬†just¬†five or six feet off my starboard bough. It was nothing less than magical!

I followed the pod and watched as they interacted with one another. Squeaking and jumping in the air. I wish I could show you, but again, I’m kinda glad I can’t! It was a moment made just for me. There was no one else on the water right then and by the time other people came into view, the dolphins were gone.

These are extraordinary moments. And they don’t happen everyday. After all “if life were made of moments, even now and then a bad one! But if life were only moments then you’d never know you had one.”

I guess what I’m saying is that when magic¬†comes along don’t spend all your time trying to take a picture of it. Let your phone die or leave it back on shore and keep that magic for yourself. There will be plenty of other things to share with people. Magic is something special. And since it’s rare, take care who you share it with.

Truth is, even this blog can’t effectively convey the rejuvenating magic that happened to me somewhere between Disney and the water. But I feel like myself again. I feel the ideas and the excitement of my life again. Ideas and excitement that never left me. God doesn’t take away your creativity. It’s you who walks away. And if you’re lucky you come back and remember who you are. Take the magic when it comes! Seek it out if you have to.

“Just remembering you’ve had an ‘and’ when you’re back to ‘or’ makes the ‘or’ mean more than it did before.”

I hope you find magic today. And I hope I never get to see pictures of it!

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Lizzie’s Solo Ride

Disney World Scavenger Hunt blog

Lizzie's Solo Disney Adventure Blog Scavenger Hunt Nerd

I LOVE Disney. If you’ve been reading me for any length of time, you know this. That being said, I’ve never done Disney on my own before. I’ve always gone with friends or family. And the day is usually very mapped out. Everyone has their top picks and there is lots to cover in a short period of time. I love to go with a plan and I love to go with people, but this day was different.

There was something really freeing and exciting about a solo adventure. Just me, nerdself and I.

I did have an agenda in the form of Crazy for Disney’s scavenger hunt. It kept my day just organized enough without feeling rushed. And since I only paid for parking and dole whips, I didn’t feel like I had to “get my money’s worth.” There is no shortage of Disney adventures in my future, that’s for dang sure!

So take a look at my adventures and if you want to do a scavenger hunt of your own try Crazy for Disney’s. But also, keep an eye out for my own scavenger hunt. There were some things I definitely wanted to add on the list (and some that I did add on the list!)

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First up was Hollywood Studios:

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What I found at Hollywood…

  1. A Movie Theater
  2. Large Green Army Men
  3. 1950s Diner
  4. Giant Guitar
  5. Kermit the Frog
  6. Star Wars Characters
  7. Tower of Terror
  8. Giant Letter Blocks
  9. Woody or Jessie
  10. Mickey Mouse Balloon
  11. Handprints in Cement
  12. An AT-AT
  13. A Potato Head

(Things on the list I couldn’t find or didn’t have time to find…A Giant Ant or Bug, Mater, Pizza Planet, Giant Mouse Ears, A Spaceship.)

Next was Epcot:

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What I found at Epcot…

  1. Giant Silver Sphere
  2. Someone Wearing a Sombrero
  3. Boat (Monorail was on the list, but I substituted it for a boat ride.)
  4. Characters Made of Plants (this picture is actually from Magic Kingdom, I couldn’t find plant characters at Epcot to save my life!!)
  5. A Planet (BAM! I found 2!!)
  6. Statue of a Viking
  7. A Chinese Building
  8. American Flag (I spent way too long trying to get a picture of the flag flying. Alas!)
  9. A Clock Tower (thanks Germany!)
  10. A Park Bench
  11. A Street Band
  12. Coral Reef
  13. Nemo
  14. A Sea Turtle
  15. A Live Disney Character

(Things on the list I couldn’t find or didn’t have time to find…Statue of a Horse, A Double Decker Bus, A Kidcot Sign, A Dinosaur.)

Then, Animal Kingdom:

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What I found at Animal Kingdom:

  1. Tree of Life
  2. Statue of a Disney Character
  3. A Dinosaur
  4. Live Elephant
  5. Live Gorilla
  6. A Large Mountain
  7. A Train
  8. A Safari Vehicle
  9. A Stream/ Flowing Water
  10. A Bus
  11. A Live Disney Character
  12. A Large Set of Bones
  13. Someone Wearing a Safari Hat (Bonus for finding someone wearing a hat and a vest!)
  14. Someone Wearing a Vest
  15. A Truck Selling Ice Cream
  16. Street Band
  17. Rafiki (Got a two for one on this one with #2)

(Things on the list I couldn’t find or didn’t have time to find…I only couldn’t find Flik from a Bug’s Life and it was only cause I was running out of time.)

Finally, Magic Kingdom:

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What I found at Magic Kingdom:

  1. Monorail
  2. Someone Wearing Mouse Ears (so many to choose from including myself!)
  3. Statue of Walt Disney
  4. A Horse
  5. A Map
  6. A Balloon
  7. A Train
  8. A Castle (Correction…THE Castle!)
  9. A Popcorn Cart
  10. A Big Treehouse
  11. A Flying Elephant
  12. A Pirate
  13. A Princess
  14. Turkey Leg (I added this one to the list)
  15. A Spaceship
  16. A Former U.S. President (Lots to choose from but I went with good ole Abe)
  17. A Teacup
  18. A Flying Carpet
  19. Mickey Mouse (sorta cheated on this one and used #2 twice…time crunch)
  20. Dole Whip (I also added this one to the list, Dole Whip is an absolute must!!)

(Things on the list I couldn’t find or didn’t have time to find…I only missed Winnie the Pooh at Magic Kingdom and it’s because I was trying to find the Pooh himself. Oh, well…next time!)

Disney Princess Recap

Modern Princess Instagram Challenge Rapunzel Disney blog post

I am 1 week into my Modern Princess Instagram Challenge. And I am already feeling pretty royal this week, more than usual! Here’s a look at what’s been happening on Instagram if you’ve missed it. And there’s still plenty of time to join my challenge and be entered to win a Disney Prize Pack!! Each picture, tweet, Facebook post, etc will get you entered!! What do you have to lose? No, the real question is, what do you have to gain! I’ll tell you…a Disney Prize Pack and a whole lot of Princess fun! That’s what.¬†Let’s do this!

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Once Upon a Dream…

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Be Our Guest…
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But Don’t Eat the Apples…
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Life is waiting for you Just Around the Riverbend…
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So Hold onto your Seashells…
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We Finish Each Other’s Sandwiches…
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And I’m So Glad I Left My Tower…
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Because now I can live The Dinglehopper Life…
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Also, make sure to take a look at Amber’s instagram feed. She is faithfully following along and has some pretty adorable princessey posts. Check her out: @neeneecosplay
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Also check out my cute nephew who is participating too. Look at him living that Merman life!! I can’t handle that much cute!!!image

Friends Forever

Disney Day Ladies Weekend Disney Bounding blog post

On the subject of friendships that will not be stopped by distance, hard times or stormy weather! Two of my quality handful came down to sunny, ole Florida for Ladies’ Weekend and it was completely epic!!

Thursday, I picked the girls up from the airport and revels were had!

Hogwarts Adventure Ladies Weekend #SlytherGryffinPuff blog post

Wizarding World of Harry Potter Orlando, FL Ladies Weekend blog

On Friday, the three of us boarded the Hogwarts express and headed for that magical land known as Universal, home of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter!! Where we represented each of our houses in style.

I am the resident Gryffindor…brave, daring, chivalrous, courageous.

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Erin is the our¬†Hufflepuff…loyal, kind, honest and friendly.

Ladies Weekend Follow Blog Erin Ellis Hufflepuff #SlytherGryffinPuff

And Cristina is our Slytherin…cunning, ambitious, determined, a leader.

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Together we are a powerful force to be reckoned with and while it’s true that we didn’t have a Ravenclaw to bring along on this trip, we really weren’t missing one. We are quite possibly the best traveling companions. Cristina is the planner, the one who keeps us organized and on schedule. I’m the one who makes sure we veer off schedule every once in a while and allows the wind to blow us here and there. And Erin steadies the two of our opposing forces. We are stronger together and it made for the most delightful day!

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Check out our Harry Potter adventures on Instagram and Twitter with the hashtag #SlytherGryffinPuff

Disney Day Ladies Weekend #DisneyDarlings blog post

Lizzie, Cristina and Erin Disney Bounding Share Your Ears Disney blog

Saturday, we were off to the other magical place in Florida…the most magical place in all the land (sorry Harry, the House of Mouse wins!) Disney World!! We had lofty goals and were going to attempt¬†all four parks! We made it to everything we wanted to do at Hollywood Studios and Magic Kingdom and ended up in Epcot for dinner and fireworks. (Sadly Animal Kingdom had to be sacrificed for the greater good.) The best part of all is that months ago we decided to¬†Disney Bound for our magical day. And we had a blast!

I was Rapunzel.

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Erin was Belle.

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And Cristina was Snow White.

(Cristina is a crafty princess who managed not to get her individual¬†princess portrait taken….. clearly a Slytherin!)

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For more from these gorgeous creatures who I am lucky enough to call friends, go check out their blogs. Yep…they’re both bloggers. Imagine that!

The Ever Changing Us 

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Also make sure you are following all three of us on Instagram, but only if you love pictures of happy, adorable people who love life and each other! #LadiesWeekend2016

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The weekend may be over, but these friendships will last forever!! Next year we are deciding between New Orleans and Las Vegas and 2018 will see us in London for the most epic #SlytherGryffinPuff expedition ever imagined.

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So keep a weather eye on the horizon for more us!

#StarwarsChallenge Recap

It’s been quite a journey waiting for The Force to Awaken in theaters!! Now that it’s here I scarcely know what to do with ¬†myself (besides seeing it basically everyday of the week!)

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Thanks to everyone who joined me Star Wars Challenge on Instagram! It was so fun seeing your unique interpretations of my prompts! I think I’m gonna have to do another challenge soon. If you have any ideas, shoot them my way.
Here’s a recap of the challenge!

Nov. 18: I Love Star Wars
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Nov. 19: Show Your Buns
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Nov. 20: Younglings
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Nov. 21: Force Choke
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Nov. 22: Quote Me On It
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Nov. 23: Star Wars Reading Corner
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Nov. 24: Light Side
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Nov. 25: Woman Crush Wednesday
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Nov. 26: Wookie Cookies (Happy Thanksgiving)
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Nov. 27: Dark Side
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Nov. 28: I Love You, I Knowimage

Nov. 29: Star Wars Make-Upimage

Nov. 30: The Power of Cosplayimage

Dec. 1: Favorite Characterimage

Dec. 2: Force Fashionimage

Dec. 3: Star Wars Craft Cornerimage

Dec. 4: Rebelsimage

Dec. 5: Toy Timeimage

Dec. 6: Funko Feverimage

Dec. 7: The Droids You’re Looking Forimage

Dec. 8: Ignite Your Lightsabers
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Dec. 9: Empireimage


Dec. 10: Throwback Thursdayimage

Dec. 11: Her Universeimage

Dec. 12: It’s A Trapimage

Dec. 13: Life Day Celebrationimage

Dec. 14: Product Placementimage

Dec. 15: T-Shirt Collectionimage

Dec. 16: Favorite Star Wars Movieimage

Dec. 17: Midnight Showingimage

Dec. 18: Ticket Stubsimage

 

Share your Star Wars Experiences in the comments below or email me at nerdinthecity01@gmail.com I’d love to hear from you!

May the Force be with you this weekend!

 

 

30 Days of Nerdy Hair – Day 16

Day 16: Padme Amidala from Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith

I was going to save this one for Thursday, the 18th, which will mark that we only have 6 months till Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens opens in theaters. But today I woke up with great Padme hair texture, so I had to bump it up a couple days. Padme Amidala starts off in Episode 1 as the queen of Naboo. Her hair is very strategic and massive. It’s part of her costume and her persona as queen. It’s meant to intimidate. By Episode III she has softened her hairstyles, rocking curls and waves. The hair becomes far less intimidating and much more feminine. Representing a change, not only in her political status (she is no longer queen of Naboo in Ep. III) but also in her personal life. She is married and pregnant, about to give birth to her and Anakin’s child. This is a much different Padme and her hair is a reflection of that. Hair can tell you a lot of things about a person!!

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I used a clip in place of her headpiece and just let the curls cascade down. I also added a coral lip gloss like she’s wearing in the above picture. Now all I need is a flowy, Naboo nightgown and a very angry, confused Jedi husband and my journey to Padme cosplay will be complete.

 Is anyone else so freaking ready for The Force Awakens??? Is it December yet???

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Are you following on  Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and/ or Twitter yet? If not, click the links and come join the party!! #30DaysofNerdyHair

May the hair be with you…always.

New York-iversary

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Photo by Liz Tailor

Yesterday marked the anniversary of the day I moved to the big city! 8 years ago, I was a young, naive country girl who really had no idea what I was my life was about to become. I’d always liked New York and dreamed of it. But actually moving there? Who did I think I was? Sarah Jessica Parker?

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Photo by Liz Tailor

For the first year I basically lived in a dream. Everywhere I went was new, everything I saw enchanted me. And I kept thinking I’d wake up from this awesome dream I was in and I’d be back at home doing something downright ordinary. But 8 years later, I’m still dreaming! So I guess some really do come true.

Here’s a couple things that have become my favorites over the years.

Favorite Building: The Chrysler Building

I think most people tend to favor the Empire State Building or the new Freedom Tower. Both are beautiful and impressive. But it’s the Chrysler Building that always caught my eye. I always felt it looked like it was covered in dragon scales or was secretly an alien space ship waiting to take off at any given moment.

Favorite Thinking Spot: Central Park Rocks

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Photo by Liz Tailor

When I was a nanny in this city, not so long ago, I used to come and just sit in Central Park between jobs and dream of my future. I was constantly inspired by my surroundings and seemed to find a peace there that was so lacking in the rest of the city.

Favorite Restaurant: Cafe Lalo

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Photos by Audrey Carlson

This is the restaurant that was used in the filming of You’ve Got Mail. And I always loved to eat there and just imagine Tom Hanks just outside debating whether or not to come inside. And who are we kidding… I took Pride and Prejudice along with me just in case! As an added bonus they have delicious brunch options. My favorite is the Grilled French Brie sandwich and the Aloha (it’s a mimosa but with pineapple juice!)

Favorite Celebrity Sighting: Peter Dinklage

It’s a rather frequent occurrence to spot a celebrity on the streets of New York. I’ve seen Wallace Shawn, Stanley Tucci, Gerard Butler, Sarah Paulson and more. But my very favorite celebrity sighting was this past Halloween when I saw Peter Dinklage out trick or treating with his family. I was walking behind this mom and dad pushing a stroller. The dad was wearing a hoodie, so I couldn’t see who he was at first and actually didn’t really pay the family any notice, other than that they were directly in front of me on the overcrowded street in the West Village. The mother stopped short, causing me to run into her. So I said “Excuse me” and attempted to walk around them. As I did, I believe Mr. Dinklage thought I was saying excuse me to him. I think he believed that I was going to ask for a picture or an autograph or something. But until he turned around to give me what I can only describe as a ‘Tyrion Lannister stare’, I didn’t even know it was him. It was the coolest thing ever!!!

Favorite Tourist Trap: Times Square

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Photo by Liz Tailor

To be honest, Times Square and I have a deep love/ hate relationship. On a busy New York day, I HATE Times Square. Too many people crammed in too small a space and everyone walking way too slow for me. But at odd hours or rainy days, I actually like it. It’s never night time in Times Square. And you feel almost as if you’re in a movie or a TV show or something. As I said, my first year in New York felt exactly like a dream. Back then I used to go to Times Square all the time. I’d sit in the public chairs and just people watch for hours. Something I haven’t enjoyed doing in a very long time (sadly.)

Favorite Borough: Brooklyn

In my 8 years living in New York, I have lived in New Jersey (obviously not a borough, but I’ve lived there), The Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens. And out of all of them, I’ve loved Brooklyn best. I’ve lived in 4 different areas if Brooklyn. Williamsburg, Bensonhurst, Bay Ridge and Bushwick. Brooklyn is a lot like Manhattan in that any area you go to in Brooklyn feels entirely it’s own. Bensonhurst is old world Italian Brooklyn and has the best San Gennaro festival I’ve ever been to. Williamsburg is trendy and has thrift ships and coffee shops and pizza places that just beg to be tried. Bay Ridge felt like the suburbs. Like perhaps I wasn’t in New York at all. And Bushwick was straight up scary! But in a few years, I suspect it will feel a little more like Williamsburg, because it can be rather trendy as well.

Favorite Museum: Museum of Natural History

When I was a nanny, I used to take the kids here all the time. I think I’ve been there about 13 times since I’ve lived here. And I have never been bored with it. There is so much to see that I always feel like I’m seeing new things every time I go.

What are a few of your favorite things? Let me know in the comments below! And I hope your New Year is off to an amazing start!