Friday, June 17, 2011

Traditions, Discovery Day, and First Few Days of Training

I know I promised to write earlier this week but I have barely been home. I think this is the first night I have actually been home for most of the night.

Saturday-So last Saturday was Traditions which was my first paid day of work. Traditions was a super early start which was rough. The morning started with a union presentation which was just awful. I didn't agree with the whole set up of it and how they presented it. Then we did the Working with Integrity E learning that I did last summer so that was super tough to stay awake during. Finally after that we got into learning about Disney and Walt. The best part of it was going to MK and being back in the parks. And of course receiving our nametags and Disney IDs. I was wondering how different the Traditions we had to do would be since it was like 8 1/2 hours but it was pretty much the same thing we did for the ICP except for the union presentation and having lunch at MK. Everything was just dragged out for a few extra hours. After that we went home, went to the outlets for dinner and headed back to MK. It felt so good to be back walking down Main Street again. We managed to get a few rides in which was good since the park was only open until 11. We did Pirates, Big Thunder Mountain, Haunted Mansion, Splash Mountain (first time on it since they added in the lapbars, super weird), and Mickey's Philharmagic. Then we decided to get a spot in front of the castle since Wishes would be starting soon. I was so excited to see Wishes. They got rid of it last summer during my ICP for the special fireworks they were running during Summer Nightastic. I liked those fireworks but nothing compares to Wishes. I was also excited to finally see the new show they are doing on the castle: The Magic, the Memories and You. It was so amazing, it's so incredible what they do with the castle. We decided to leave after Wishes since a few of us had another early morning.

Sunday: I had to be at Disney University for 8am for my Food and Beverage Core class. It was so boring and I was trying so hard not to fall asleep. I did end up getting my work shoes that day. Disney is doing something new and giving anyone who is working food and beverage and custodial free work shoes. They are super uncomfortable though which kind of sucks. Luckily I finished early since I had done most of my e learning during my first program. After a quick bus ride home, I changed and headed to Hollywood Studios with one of my friends for the last day of Star Wars Weekends. It was super weird being back in the Studios, it felt like I never left. The first ride we did was of course the new Star Tours, fast passes were all gone until 9pm so we waited in line for 90 minutes to ride it. I loved it, the 3D is so good and I like how each time it will be a different experience. After that we did Muppet Vision and then grabbed some lunch at Pizza Planet. We walked around a bit before heading on Tower of Terror. That is one of my favourite rides and we had such an awesome sequence. And we were in the first row too so awesome first ride of the program. Coaster's wait time was too long so we went to check out some of the Star Wars merchandise. It was so weird being back in the special event tent and seeing the new CPs doing my old job. I felt a bit homesick for last summer. I did run into some of my ex-co workers which was awesome. It was good to see some of my favourite people from last summer. After that we got some drinks and waited for Hyperspace Hoopla. Hoopla is the finale at the end of the day for Star Wars Weekends. It is such an awesome show and this year's show was just amazing. After that we headed back to housing and got to watch some of Illuminations from the bus stop.

Monday-I had my Discovery Day today so we walked around Epcot and learned about the history of the park. Then we met our coordinator of training and got shown around our area. After that we finally got our costumes. I have two costumes: one for the restaurant and one for the popcorn/beer cart. The restaurant costume is very simple, a long sleeved shirt and pants with an apron. For the cart I am dressed like a lumberjack. We also got the rest of our training schedule and I got my schedule until July 9th since that is how much training we have to have. After work we went to the pool for a bit, went to Walmart and then had our first family dinner while watching the hockey game.

Tuesday-In the morning we had E learning again but I only had a few to do so I just fooled around on the Hub and checked out any special discounts we had for the summer. After lunch we sat down with one of our managers and went over a bunch of stuff. After work I went home for a bit and then headed to Downtown Disney for dinner (finally got my Earl of Sandwich!) and went to watch Pirates.

Wednesday-I had my first day of on the job training as an AM seater

Thursday-I was off so I slept in until like 11:30 and went to Publix for some more groceries and to the pool. After the pool I went to dinner at Outback and shopped around the outlets for a bit. Made the mistake of going to Charlotte Russe and saw all the cute dresses on sale. This is going to be a real problem. I also saw they are opening an American Eagle in the outlets which is going to be tough for saving money. That night I made plans to go to Jellyrolls with one of the girls I worked with last summer. It was great to see her again and be back at Jellyrolls. I seriously love that place. Last summer one week I went like 3 times. We only stayed until one but I know we we will definitely be going back very soon.

Friday: I was off again so we went to Animal Kingdom for the day. We rode Everest, Dinosaur, did the Safari, watched Tough to be a Bug, and toured some of the exhibits and walking trails they have. It was way too hot today so we only stayed for a few hours. Luckily we made it home before this massive storm hit. After the storm died down, we had another family dinner at my place and just hung out. Tomorrow I get trained in greeter which should be fun. Hopefully it won't take a week to post again. A new arrival group arrives on Tuesday so I won't be the newbie for that much longer so that's exciting.

Friday, June 10, 2011

So happy to be back

I am so happy to be back in Orlando, it feels like I never left. I will give you a quick recap of the past few days since I need to head to bed soon since I have to get up at 6 tomorrow for Traditions (first paid day of work yay!).

Tuesday: Left for the airport at 7am and there was no lines so I took a little extra time with my family. I was doing good and not crying until I saw my mom crying and then it started. I made it through customs in like 20 minutes and had no issues. The guy I had was so nice and we just chatted and joked around. Then I had like 90 minutes to wait until I could board which sucked. Finally we were allowed to board and I ended up with the whole row to myself, score! My luggage took a bit but then I ended up getting a shuttle within 15 minutes and was the first stop too. This never happens so I was really happy. I checked into housing and had the nicest girl check me in. She wanted a photo after of me and her which was interesting. After that Cathy drove me to the Commons and I moved into my apartment. I really lucked out and got a 2 bedroom that was going to be all new people so I had dibs on the bedroom I would choose. I picked the one with the biggest closet since I had brought way too many clothes (both suitcases were overweight but West Jet was super cool again and only charged me one overweight fee). Also another awesome thing is unless 2 of my roommates decide to go home, I will not have to move once during my program since we all have the same start and end dates. I don't know how I have so much luck when it comes to Disney housing but I love it! My roommates are awesome. I am living with a girl from Mexico, Botswana, and England. We are all food and beverage too which is awesome. After texting some people from my arrival group, we met up and did the Walmart trip. I had so much to buy since I had pretty much nothing but a few toiletries. After that was done we went to the outlets and had dinner at Subway and then we all went to unpack and set our apartments up. Also, my apartment is in an awesome location. I'm right by the pool, gym and bus stop. Like literally not even a 5 minute walk. And in my backyard is Mickey's Retreat. I really lucked out again.

Wednesday: We had to be at the Clubhouse for around 10 for some orientation sessions. Basically info about housing and some of the rules aka how not to get termed. Same stuff I heard before but luckily it went by pretty fast. After that we had a little break so we went to Subway again and then boarded a bus to Vista to filling out some forms. We then went to the pool for a bit and decided to check out Downtown Disney before going to the Vista Way pool party. I've never been to a housing event besides graduation so it was really cool to check out. Plus we got free food and got to meet Minnie and Goofy. I also ran into some friends from the ICP last summer which was awesome. We found out that afternoon we had our thrown in that night. I was a little bit nervous for it but it was so much fun. Any Canadians who are reading this who are coming down: you will love it! I can't say more than that but it's amazing. The Canadians are really nice and awesome. I was planning to go to bed after the throw in since I was exhausted but then I ended up staying out until like 5:30am. And I had to get up at 7:30am so Thursday was rough.

Thursday: We had immigration sessions and paperwork which was super boring. But they seemed to speed through it. Honestly they have cut down on the time of these sessions. Half of the paperwork they sent us to do before arriving. I'm glad they did that since those mornings are so boring. After that we had nothing to do until 4 when we had to collect our passports and paperwork from the office so we decided to go eat at Applebees. They opened up down the road from Little Lake Bryan which is awesome. I love this area since there are so many places you can walk and go get something to eat from. A few of us made plans to go see the Hangover 2 that evening which was super fun. I liked the first one better but it was a nice evening out since we aren't allowed in the parks until Traditions. They renovated the movie theatre at downtown Disney and it is super nice now. Really comfy chairs and there's even theatres where you can have a waiter bring you food!

Friday: I had today off and got to sleep in until 11:30 which felt amazing. My bed is super uncomfortable though. I wake up in pain every morning so I will be investing in one of those foam mattress things asap. Did some grocery shopping at Publix since I had no food, then we went to the pool for a bit and I am super burnt now. But at least I have started on my tan. After that we made plans to go to this italian restaurant. Tomorrow I have Traditions and it's 8 1/2 hours so it will be a long day. For my ICP, I only had like 4. Then I can finally go into the parks. I hate being in town and not being able to go. Also I get my work schedule tomorrow so I will know what is happening the next few days. Hopefully I will be able to post again on Monday or something. Tomorrow and Sunday will be busy days and I doubt I will be home much.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Orlando Tomorrow!!!

In Toronto at the airport hotel, only a little over 12 hours before I head to the airport. Left my house around 10 this morning and stopped at the Georgian Mall in Barrie where I found another skirt for the days we need professional outfits. Also, got a new wallet since mine feels like it's going to break soon with everything I have crammed in it right now. After a lunch break at Moxie's it was back on the road until we arrived at the hotel around 4. Seeing all the planes going by is definitely making this feel more real. However, I know it won't feel completely real until I see my first palm tree. And go on the mini monorail at the airport.

Not looking forward to saying good-bye to my family tomorrow morning. I did pretty good saying good-bye to my dog this morning. Really thought I was going to start bawling, especially when she tried to leave the kennel, but I did okay. I probably won't get a chance to blog tomorrow since the first day there is pretty nuts but I will definitely try to write a quick post on Wednesday to let you all know where I'm living and who my roommates are. Can't believe my start date is finally here :).

Sunday, June 5, 2011

2 More Days!

Today is my last day at home since I'm heading to Toronto tomorrow before flying out Tuesday morning. I can't believe my start date is nearly here. I am officially done packing except for my carry on which I'm doing later tonight. My one suitcase is ten pounds overweight which sucks but hopefully tomorrow once I pack my make-up kit and hairdryer, there will be ten pounds of extra weight in my second suitcase. I definitely don't want to pay an overweight fee and extra luggage fee.

Got my hair dyed and cut yesterday so hopefully I meet the Disney Look. I tried to find another skirt to wear during the days we have to be dressed up but I couldn't find one. Tomorrow we are stopping for a bit to do some shopping before going to the hotel so hopefully I can find a skirt or pair of pants.

I'm so excited to be back in Florida and to meet everyone in my arrival group. I still find it hard to believe in less than 48 hours I will be back in Orlando. It feels like ten years since I've been back but I know a few days in, it will feel like it's only been a few days since I've left. Well I should get back to getting my carry on organized, I'm so paranoid I'm going to forget something important like my passport or social security card. I feel so much more disorganized this time around for some reason.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

One More Week!!!

I can't believe I only have one week left in Canada, that is so crazy. It's so hard to believe at this time in a week, I will be all moved in. I really need to do more packing but I've just been feeling so unmotivated to do it. I was determined to be done packing by June 1st but that is definitely not happening now.

I paid my program fee so now everything is paid for which is awesome. Tomorrow I'm going to get my traveler's checks and take care of my health card. Sunday night I had a going away dinner with my family. We are really close and I see my aunts and cousins a lot so it will be rough not seeing them for a year. It is still up in the air whether or not some of them will come visit but I really hope they do.

I'm so excited to see where I will be living and who my roommates will be. I really lucked out on both my ICPs and had amazing roommates so hopefully it's the same this time around. I would really love to be in a 2 bedroom again, that was the perfect living situation. I've definitely got my fingers crossed for that!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Two More Weeks!

Only two weeks to go until I'm back in the sunshine state. I have finally started packing and got quite a bit done already. My mom bought me a Canadian flag for my apartment so now I have something Canadian to bring down with me.

E-mailed my insurance information to my recruiter and next I need to pay the program fee. Apparently we can pay it when we arrive at the welcome centre but I would rather take care of it before I leave. I took care of my cell phone and am putting it on hold again like I did last summer. I was originally going to unlock it and bring it with me but decided to go with Boost Mobile and they don't deal with unlocked phones. They are no contract and I can get a blackberry so it's all good. I'm so excited to have a 407 number again.

I decided I want to find another professional outfit for the classes and training I need to do at Disney University. I'm bringing down the two outfits I used last summer but I figured another one might be a good idea since I don't know how many days I need to have professional clothing for. I know for sure I need them for Traditions and my Discovery day but I just want to be prepared in case there are more. I also need to dye my hair and make sure it fits the Disney Look.

Other than that Sunday I start saying my good-byes to people which I am not looking forward to. Still can't believe in two weeks today I will be back in Disney housing getting ready to start another crazy, magical journey. I've definitely been listening to a lot of Disney park music to get in the mood. A girl I did the ICP with last summer found this website with music from the parks and they had Block Party Bash and Move it Shake it Celebrate It which are my two favourite parades so of course I had to download them. The person who runs the website has this really awesome tumblr about the amazing simple things at Disney that I can't stop reading. I definitely recommend checking it out:

Sunday, May 8, 2011


I can't believe in one month I will be back in Orlando. I still can't believe I am spending a year in Florida. It still feels like I will only be down there for a few months.

I finally bought my health insurance. I went with the same company I did last summer since they meet all the requirements needed by Disney. I only need to get insurance until October 1st because after that I qualify for Disney's health insurance so that's good.

I went and did some more clothes shopping today and got some tank tops and a new pair of shorts. The only other things I want to pick up before leaving now is a new purse, sunglasses, and some nice flats and sandals. I also want to try and find something "Canadian" to bring down with me. I didn't really care about decorating my bedroom on the ICP since it was such a short time but I definitely want to get a Canadian flag or something this time. I also might need to bring some Ketchup Chips with me since those don't exist in the States.

The only things left to do on my to do list is to pay my program fee and pack. Packing is seriously stressing me out since I'm so afraid I'm going to forget something important.