Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Get Comfy, It's a Long One.

I haven't done a full update in quite awhile, so it's time to play catch up!

In my role, I can be scheduled anywhere in the Magic Kingdom with any characters- because of this I spend most days in different locations. Lately I am most frequently working in the Crystal Palace restaurant, which is character dining. Winnie the Pooh Bear and his friends walk around the restaurant, greeting all their guests. My job there is mainly to keep an eye on the characters and make sure tables are prepared with cameras and autograph books out and ready to go. There is typically less guest interaction in dining because, well most people don't really want you to chat it up while they are trying to eat, naturally. But lately I've been able to make friends with some adorable little kids there. Yesterday I got to hold precious bouncing baby boys from 2 separate tables, both under a year old. I just love little flirt babies, and both these guys were such mini ladies men! They were just so dang cute and giggly. Both tables ended up taking pictures of me and their little boys, so that made me happy knowing that I added a little bit of magic to their night.
Me & the gang. (The sling is no big deal- I apparently have tendonitis in my left shoulder and had to wear that for a week)

My favorite experience at work so far came from a little prince named Jack. Jack was here celebrating his 3rd birthday with his whole family. I had already spent some time previously talking with his family about their vacation, when I overheard his mom saying, "Go ahead Jack, ask her! Don't be shy." I turn around and asked if I can help with something. Jack shyly smirks at me while holding his autograph book, and his mom says that he wants to know if I would sign his book! I was entirely too excited and overjoyed to comply. After signing my name, I then pull out a notecard from my attendant bag and asked for Jack's signature. He is just now learning to write his name, so with his mother's guidance, telling him one letter at a time, I got my first guest autograph. He was so delighted that his mom asked for a picture of us together, one I wish I had a copy of. It's amazing to know that I will one day be a fun memory of someone's trip, in a photo hugging Jack, while holding up his first ever autograph. If he ever becomes famous, seriously, I got the first one.
Now proudly hanging on my bulletin board!
I have finally had more time to play and explore the parks now. I think I've actually done most of the rides now that I wanted to, with the exception of Toy Story Mania, Space Mountain & the star wars ride at Hollywood studios. Those are still on my to-do lists. Tower of Terror will still never, ever, ever happen....ever.

Even though I work with the characters, it's always excited to get to meet them at the parks as a guest and get their autographs!

Me, Tinkerbelle, Nicolina, and Elyse

Pooh Bear- giving away hugs!

Princess skirts!

 The pictures with Ariel and Belle were from my night I worked until 1:45 am. Who doesn't like to hang out with royalty?!

 On another exciting note, I was given my first review yesterday. In training we were told that someone would be out to observe us in our first 45 days, and that day came yesterday for me. I was pulled aside during our lunch shift at Crystal Palace by a manager who told me I wasn't in trouble, but we needed to go have a chat. We went down to a break room and she explained that she was there to give me my review and apparently had spent the last set observing me without my knowledge. Excuse me while I brag for a moment, but I was extremely surprised and delighted, as I had been preparing myself for critique, only to find that she had no negative comments to make! I was told my manager had raved about me, everything this trainer observed was spot on, and she just had so many nice things to say. It was such an amazing confirmation to get from a supervisor! I'm pretty sure I went back to work glowing!

My last and finally update is a bit off topic from the regular Disney details. The last few years I've begun giving things up for Lent, usually items like soda, french fries, that sort of thing. This year I'm trying something a bit different. I decided to give up complaining. Now, this isn't as black and white as not picking up a soft drink for 40 days, so it's more of a challenge and goal. Of course I will slip and let some complaints slide over the next month, but it's already making me more aware of my attitude. I don't think I'm a naturally negative person, but even the amount of small complaints I make tend to be unnecessary. I am so blessed and lucky, I need to give praise more and complain less. Along with this, I decided to make a daily positives list. I began a few days ago, and so far have only been keeping track of it on my phone. I decided a better way would be to share it here- but so I don't have to mix it in with my Disney updates, I will be adding an additional blog to my account. It's more for me really, but maybe sharing it will encourage others to do the same, and find more joy in their days.  Again, it's more for me to keep track of, but feel free to check it out every now and then! 
Here it is:

Until next time...
Stitch & I love you all!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Hello Homesickness!

So homesickness is starting to creep in our apartment. I think we've all been so busy for the past month its been hard to notice what's been missing from home. But as we are starting to get used to long hours and busy days, its been more noticeable.
We've learned that CP doesn't stand for college program like we thought, but instead closers-of-the-park! A few of my roommates have been unfortunate enough to be regularly scheduled until 3:30 am. I've gotten lucky in that regard by only having been scheduled one shift that ended at 1:45 am so far. Most of my shifts fly by though, and even though I miss parts of home, I still absolutely love my job and am thankful to be here. I love getting to talk and play with all the children and meet families from all over the world. I've even gotten to practice speaking French some with families traveling here from Canada.

There are a few downsides about my role here though, the main one being it's difficult to meet people other than guests. The majority of my roommates have a group of coworkers they regularly work with, while I'm constantly with different characters and only occasionally another random attendant. I've worked with a few of the same Photopass cast members a few times, but almost every day I am working with all new people. Hopefully soon I'll be able to meet more cast members though. Sometimes I'm lucky to have at least one of my wonderful roommates have the same day off as me, but when they don't, it'd be nice to have other people to call!
I've been feeling under the weather today, but am grateful to have roommates who make toast and hot tea for me to feel better. Hopefully tomorrow I'll feel better: I have a busy week coming up, working at Chef Mickey's, hanging out with Woody and Jessie, Winnie the Pooh & Friends, and wrapping up the week with Mickey & the gang.

Until next time,

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Things I've Learned At Disney

1. I never want to travel to Brazil. Ever.
2. There is real magic here, and we get to experience it every day.
3. Some people can manage to be angry even while at the happiest place on earth.
4. Walt Disney was a brilliant, remarkable man.
5. Some parents are absolutely clueless.
6. Bubbles can turn a day around. In fact, some kids only need bubbles, not rides or characters!
7. You can get used to anything, including waking up at 6 am.
8. Stickers are almost as awesome as bubbles.
9. British accents, once spoken, are near impossible to break. It's bloody brilliant! 
10. It all started with a mouse.

"There's a snake in my boot!"

Friday, February 3, 2012

Have time to SPARE

So today I'm scheduled as a "spare" which means I'm basically here to cover shifts of people who called in or are sick. The other few times I've been a spare I've been sent straight to a location, (Rapunzel; Mickey & Minnie) but today I'm actually on call in the break room so far. Normally when I check in at Base I hear the dreaded words, "can you extend today?" But today, instead I heard the glorious words telling me to check back in an hour. Did I mention I'm still being paid? I'm hopeful to spend the day in the break room reading, and perhaps get an early release. Despite getting 8 hours of sleep last night, I am dragging this morning. Sorry for the short update, but maybe I can sneak a quick nap in!

Until next time.