Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Downtown Disneyland

Yesterday Michael drove us to Downtown Disney in Anaheim. It took us about an hour, but didn't seem too long. It was smaller than Downtown Disney in Orlando, but I knew that before we went, and thankfully the parking was still free (for the first 3 hours). We seemed to be trying to spend extra time wandering around in the different stores to get our "time's worth". We were there at least an hour and a half. There were a few things I would have bought if we had money, including some cool Disney princess art postcards that were $2.25 each.
We probably spent the most time in the main Disney store. I kept an open eye out for ladies with glitter, asking if I, as "the princess" wanted any- like the way they did in Orlando. But no such luck. There was also not a store we found with free samples of any chocolate or fudge. Blast again! If I had $19 to spare, plus extra for shipping to Florida, I would have gotten this coin purse (below) with a long black shoulder strap for my mom. A festive alternative to the plain black coin purse she often uses on day-trips like these.
That's the closest I could get to being inside Disneyland. The tickets are $95/each, so I highly doubt we will ever go, but that's okay. Michael noticed the stone sports players up along the outside wall of the ESPN store all had moving heads. I didn't take a picture because it was creepy.. We stopped by the Coca Cola truck which was giving out free cups. I took one too, so Michael could have mine- the way I would always make my younger brother, Zach, take a food sample from Sam's Club, even if he didn't want it, that way I could have both! We walked around the hotel area and talked about how fun it would be to go swimming. There was a guard guy at the open gate, but he was watching people who were already in the pool, so we could have run right past!
No trip is complete without seeing a stray kitty! But that's all. It was a good day and I'm glad we got a chance to check another tourist-y California thing off my "bucket list". I was thinking that we should do one fun event every Tuesday and I could call the posts "Tubular Tuesdays!" or something like that. But I don't have any more free ideas until August 20th, for the Arboretum Gardens day in Arcadia.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013


I went to Supercuts this morning, finally. But before that, Michael made us breakfast- his "famous" grilled cheese. Apparently he has a lot of famous meals that I never knew of. But, that's marriage, right? He also made the eggs and they were super fluffy because of the extra milk and I did the dishes as a trade. Doesn't it all look so delish? =)
Anyway, for future references, the salon opens at 8am, not 10am like Google says. Blast! The lady was nice. We talked about how expensive it is to live in California, but she says she is too old (she was maybe at least 60?) to move somewhere cheaper and get a job there. I feel like the cut is more chopped than angled, but whatever. And I'll have to see how it looks dried, after its washed and without product. I guess next time that I take pictures in, I'll have to use more angled bob photos. And somehow it feels weird, like my hair has been in a ponytail all day, but thinks it makes me automatically look older, or like I'm really 26?
Here is a before and after:
*Also, although I don't really consider her to be a celebrity, since she isn't a popular actress or singer, we saw Nicole Chilelli from Face Off, Season 3 at Frend's Beauty make up store that Michael wanted to go to after I got my hair cut. I only recognized her because her hair was still dyed fushia and purple like it was on the show. I wonder if she keeps it that way for that purpose?

Not Bored.

Sasha would like to know what you are doing today!
After I wake up at 9am I am getting ready for my hair cut since I haven't gotten it cut professionally since November! (Not counting the basic self-trim I did in the bathroom a month or two ago.) Then Michael and I are going to Downtown Disney! Hooray.

Due to Michael saying he is bored a lot recently.. He blames it on the fact that we don't have cable, although without it, he has been introduced to many new shows that are available for streaming on Netflix. But I found a quote by comedian/ actor Louis CK (who actually has a small, funny role of a cop in "Parks and Recreation") a few years ago. And I wanted to type it out and frame it, so I did that tonight. And incase it's hard to read through the picture, the quote says.. "I'm bored" is a useless thing to say. I mean, you live in a great, big, vast world that you're seen none percent of. Even the inside of your own mind is endless; it goes on forever, inwardly, do you understand? The fact that you're alive is amazing, so you don't get to say "I'm bored."
I had to really take my time because I messed up the first line once, and only had this other paper design. And I had to go over each letter twice since the ink ribbon is running out and I don't know how to move it or change it. In the middle of typing it, Michael came in saying things like, "Do you seriously have to do that right now? I'm trying to watch my show and you're being really loud." I was like, Geez, rude! Then after five seconds of us making cranky glare faces at each other, he busted out laughing in his usual "I'm so hilarious/ can't believe you fell for that" tone. Pffsh.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Thanks for the Memories!

I had been thinking lately that we don't have enough wedding pictures around. I have the scrapbooks, which are still only partially made, but they aren't out in the open. The most visible one is a shadow box with a picture of Michael and I walking through the line of bubbles after the reception. So I found a 3-pack of 5x7 frames at Target for $6, and printed a couple pictures. I picked out my favorite picture from the wedding (during the "first look"). The other was from our group's Star Wars skit for HD lab in June 2010. I put that on the mantle under the rare Boba Fett artwork.

Earlier this week I found a new young, stylish mom with a blog called TheMombot. There are a few crafts that she has done that are simple enough for me to try myself. One I really love that she did was this magnetic photo strip display. << Click the link, it's super cute! ;)
But at Target the knife magnet was $20 and not flat like the one she found, so yeah.. I didn't buy that, and got a pack of 4 small cork boards for $2.99 instead. They were in the kitchen section, but can't remember what they were supposed to be for. I just nailed them to the wall.
This is definitely something I would want to replicate in the future when we have more money and get photo strips made at different malls or movie theaters- or if we ever attend a wedding where someone has one set up. That's a dream of mine! I think it costs $5,000 to rent one though. Yipes. I have one photo strip from high school made with Mia and Lindsey, but I couldn't find it today. Instead, I found this! A sleepover from over 11 years ago, making us both 14 years old at the time.
On the opposite page I had written, Lindsey came over for the sleepover. She stops for a moment from writing me a note to flash a smile. We didn't fall asleep until about 2:07am!!! Oh naive children, thinking that's such a long time to stay awake. Ha, how precious. ☺

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Oh, these days!!

My next two "What I'll Wear" posts have been postponed due to the fact that I accidentally locked us out of the house on Thursday. And I had the audacity to ask Michael if we would still take the pictures of me while we waited for the locksmith. He said "No!", which was understandable. When he tried to find something to use to jump over the back fence to check if the backdoor was unlocked, he pulled a thick board away from the fence and we found this feline treasure. Ahhhh!! I did my hair pretty cool that night with braided headbands (it works better on really long hair), so figured I would take pictures while it was done since I plan to get my hair cut in a few days. I haven't had it cut since November! And I apologize for the "duck face"; the regular smiley angles didn't look as good.
Over the past ten days Michael and I have been talking a lot about money and how we can move forward in our relationship as a family and future career choices and so on. But last night I typed up a two and a half page of the changes that needed to made of how we can save money and a list of free dates that I demand he take me on, such as spending a day at Downtown Disney and another at the Arboretum Gardens in Arcadia. And that.. is how you get things done! =)

Today we went to Smart & Final (like a mini Sam's Club that has some bulk items) and the 99 Cent store. My favorite! Michael even admitted that they had more food selections than he expected and we picked up a lot of boxed noodles and canned veggies, which were 70 cents instead of a dollar. I even found some things that I will keep in mind for later- like frozen orange juice where you add to it 3 cups of water. I forgot about those! Between those two stores we got 17 items for $20. Woohoo! Michael did say he felt Amish since he agreed to boil his own powdered tea instead of buying the individual containers. That will save us a good $300 by the end of the year! I hope your week has improved greatly like ours has! ;)

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

What I'll Wear, Wednesday

The dress code at work has tightened over the past couple of weeks and unless I wash my clothes every few days, I don't have many "appropriate" outfits. I don't like wearing dress pants since I can never find them in my size or length; so I prefer skirts with thick tights. My mom and Michael's parents said they would pay for a couple new work shirts. So Michael took me to Forever 21 on Monday, before we had dinner with Gaby and his girlfriend, Rene. This is a sheer top, but I have a black V-neck underneath.
It doesn't look how I imagined it would all put together, especially with the high waistband on the skirt (which I got at Plato's closet in January last year for my 911 job in Orlando). It's loose on me, but I don't want to get rid of it because it looks great when I twirl! I think this shirt might also look good with a silky cream colored skirt with a black band around the bottom. I actually really like these button up shirts with a pair of nice skinny jeans, but we aren't allowed to wear those anymore- not even on the night shift. Still it beats a boring uniform.

Thanks to Michael for taking these pictures even though he doesn't like the kitty shirt. He says it reminds him of our old lady neighbor, Ruth- the one with a thousand cats.

Nostalgia at it's best.

Four years ago from tonight, I made what was possibly the most important decision of my life.
Before moving to Orlando in July 2009, I told myself that my time at Full Sail would be about school. Those 21 months would be focused on learning about the film industry and getting to know myself better; not worrying about getting a boyfriend. I was confident that summer, that I could survive on my own.

I was excited that my roommate and I got along so well during our hour-long phone conversation. I still remember the last line of her "I need a roommate" email. It was signed, "Ryan Walker. PS, I'm a girl." I called her up and not long after, we agreed to be roommates. It was a very exciting time. My parents were great (they always have been) and helped me move and took me to Target and bought me things I didn't already have- a lamp, a desk, laundry detergent, etc. After they left I was surprised that I did not feel homesick or nervous, like I imagined that I would. I had Ryan. She instantly became by best friend in Orlando and I was so glad that she was around all the time. She walked to school with me and let me give her hugs. We sat next to each other in class and lab, laughing about the same things and enjoying each others sarcasm and dry sense of humor.

We started classes on Thursday, July 9th and I think it was the 10th when I met "Nick". He was sitting next to me in Behavioral Science and Leah Sadallah was asking him about the tattoos on his neck. I quickly mentioned that "I have a tattoo", showing off the star outline on my right wrist, before going back to typing a Facebook message to Alana. The guy's name was Michael Gore, but his voice and gestures reminded me of Nicholas Cage and he didn't mind me calling him Nick. I was sure he was older than me, being so tall and sporting trimmed facial hair.

Shawn McGee was his main friend at the time and they came with Ryan and I to an extra credit lecture. Inside, Nick complimented me on my nice handwriting. We exchanged phone numbers after the lecture and he came over to our apartment that night with a handful of other people to watch the movie "Crash". We had homework to write a paper on it later. I didn't tell Nick at the time, but I was disappointed that he sat in the back corner of Shelby's room for the movie, while I sat up front, close to the TV. I tell him all the time now. =)
 On our walk home a few days later, I told Ryan that I thought Nick liked me. She agreed and asked if I returned the feelings. I told her that he was nice and I liked the attention, but I wasn't trying to get a boyfriend at this point in my life. Ryan agreed, stating the same for herself. (Spoiler alert: She met Ben Spencer in August 2009 and they got married 15 months later.)

Over the following week, Nick and I took several long walks around the Azure apartment complex. Although I kept telling him no, he told me that he would wait for me, until I was ready to be his girlfriend. He let me know that he would never give up and he seemed very honest about it. I often went for long bike rides during this time, praying out loud for guidance.

Friday the 24th I drove up to Gainesville with plans for the weekend. I was going to hang out with my ex-boyfriend and also celebrate Mia's 22nd birthday. The first couple of hours were fine, but once I got to Sam's Club with my parents and brother, Zach, I already wanted to leave. I needed to leave. I frantically texted Nick and Ryan, explaining my detrimental situation. I couldn't take it. Right then I hated being in Gainesville. It made the past couple of weeks at Full Sail seem like a completely wonderful dream and now I was awake and depressed.

Zach watched me as my body shook behind the passenger's seat, my eyelids failing to hold back tears. Finally Zach quietly said, "Mommy, Rachel's crying." I stopped trying to be quiet about it and let out a few low wails. I had to go back. When we got back to the house, I quickly threw everything back in my car. My mom didn't want me to leave, but I absolutely had to. I don't remember if I cried on the way "home" (my new home with my two new best friends) or what music I had playing, but I remember that as I drove back into Orlando, the dry heat caused lightning to flash. There may have been a light rain, but mostly lightning that flashed a few times causing the whole sky to light up, seeming like it was daytime for just a few seconds. I've always liked that type of lightning.

I changed my Facebook status to "in a relationship" when I got back to my apartment. It was only two and a half weeks into the school year, and I broke that "no boyfriend" promise. Thank goodness!

** Please note, aside from those few hours mentioned, I have enjoyed every other visit to Gainesville. =)

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

the Greatest Show on Earth!

At 11am, the doors opened and we were able to walk down to the main floor for the pre-show yesterday. I'm really glad Ryan recommended it. Its a few extra acts to entertain people before the show; stuff you won't see if you don't attend, but it doesn't cost extra. But Ben was able to get us free tickets anyway- yay! I loved all of the music (popular radio songs); a great upbeat dance mix.We got to see a clown doing tricks with a basketball and doing flips in the air, with his arms attached to thick ropes. Two thin girls from Russia were doing contortion moves and spins with a ribbon wand.
On the other side of the floor they had animals- 3 different colored horses and an elephant, Mabel, who was fun because she kept kicking big beach balls into the crowd. She also played basketball and painted a picture. The guy actually stuck the paintbrush in her trunk nostril, which looked uncomfortable. Michael entered the drawing to win the painting, but we didn't get it. Although Ryan said we could have! ;) The rest are my best pictures from the main show!
^^ There are 5 guys in this picture- two of them are the white blurs down in the trampolines.

I went back through old pictures and found that Michael and I last went to the circus at the Amway Center in Orlando on January 17th, 2011 (the day after we finished shooting "Gruff's Bridge"). Ryan thinks it was called "Zim, Zam, Zow!' They had different acts such as guys doing flips on glow-in-the-dark bungee stilt-shoes like Michael used to have. But the show yesterday had a few funny acts including animals like bunnies and poodles. They told us that each show lasts for two years and they go to different cities over that time span, so for example, I don't think they would be back in Los Angeles until summer 2015. Although, that may not matter for us! ;)

LA Live

Michael and I had an hour to spare between the time we got to LA Live and when we were able to enter the Staples Center for the Ringling pre-show at 11am, so we walked around to find some breakfast. I was excited when I saw that a red carpet was being set up and took some pictures through the chain link fence, holding us back. Turns out it was not for a movie premiere, just the ESPYS Experience, which is being held tonight at the Nokia Theatre. I think that's the ESPN Awards? They were also setting up a basketball area on the sidewalk. Anyway, Michael decided Starbucks was a good choice and I was thrilled when I saw they had bagels! Michael likes their banana nut bread.
We sat outside around the plants and watched the little birds around us. I threw tiny pieces of bagel at them and one got close enough and let his feed him. He was eating the little bread pieces right out of our hands! (My camera doesn't like close ups.) I thought of how my dad would have liked to work security in that area since all the guards were riding around on 3-wheeled segways! Haha.
At 10:45, we walked back towards the Staples Center (home of the LA Lakers). Ben later gracefully mentioned, "I hate sports." It made me laugh. I forgot how much Ben and I have in common. I realized that a lot back in Full Sail when Ryan would tell me about a situation they had been in, similar to something Michael and I had gone through. But Ryan and Michael would have the same thoughts or views and opinion on things, while Ben and I would have reacted the same in the two situations. So I'm sure my relationship advice never did any good for her, ha.
Check out those great complimentary seats ~Row 6, baby! (I believe this post is already getting a little lengthy and barely related to the circus and I'd rather have extra medium sized posts than one very long post where you have to scroll and scroll and scroll.. and scroll!) But I will say, it was cool seeing Ryan walking around the floor before the show- Michael was great at pointing her out when the lights were dim-, moving carts around and putting stands away at the end. I texted her where our seats were and she waved at me from behind the curtain. When all the lights came up again, so everyone could see their way out as they left, Ryan came over to talk to us. We didn't see Ben working behind the scenes, but I never asked where he would be.