October Update

Lots of things have kept me away from my blog over the past several weeks. 

Every six months, there are some unavoidable happenings at work that are a core part of my job which cause me a great deal of stress, trigger my anxiety in major ways, and zap all of my energy. As you might have guessed, that was the situation the past couple weeks. On top of that, I had an illness that was bad enough to warrant a same day appointment with my doctor, and then one of my cats had to go in for emergency surgery. Consequently, I'm all kinds of behind with other life stuff and a bit overwhelmed with my to do list. Things are beginning to ease up, so I'm cautiously optimistic I'll be able to get things back to routine soon.

Planet Zoo

It hasn't been a completely terrible month, though. For one, the Planet Zoo Beta was released for two weeks. The game still needs a lot of tweaking and bug fixes, but I still had a lot of fun with it and I'm super excited for it's actual release in November. There's a focus on animal welfare and conservation which is very appealing to me.

A screenshot of a wolf from Planet Zoo.

A screenshot of a wolf from Planet Zoo.

Fall is Here!

Fall has finally arrived which always improves my mood. We had a really warm September. Last week we were still dealing with temps in the 90s. Now we are at a pleasant 65 and I got to wear a sweatshirt outside for the first time in forever. I've done a bit of fall decorating but not much thanks to how the past few weeks have been. I'm hoping to do a bit more this week. I'm wearing Halloween earrings today and I've switched to my autumn eyeglass frames, so I'm trying to get more of the spirit of fall in my life. Fall also brings football, and more importantly to me, fantasy football, as I run a league for my friends.

My Disney Trip less than 100 days away!

Fall also means I'm getting very close to my next trip to Walt Disney World. We've made all of our dining and Galaxy's Edge reservations. We are now figuring out our attraction priorities so I can make touring plans and book our fastpasses next month! I've also started planning my trip after that. I really need to write up some more Disney posts!

Podcast & Game Recommendations

I recently discovered two new podcasts that I'm very much enjoying and highly recommend.

  1. https://www.oblivitypodcast.com/ : “A war hero is posted to the remote ice plains of Pluto on her toughest mission yet: to oversee a small, dysfunctional research team.”

  2. http://disenchantedpod.libsyn.com/: “Inheriting a mysterious but beautiful old house makes for a rather interesting new life. Definitely not haunted.”

I also finished a beautiful and thought-provoking video game on Steam. It's a visual novel about artificial intelligence and mental health.

            Eliza: https://store.steampowered.com/app/716500/Eliza/

Self-care

A recent EKG and my chronically high pulse prompted my primary care physician to refer me to a cardiologist. The appointment went well and my cardiologist thinks I'm fine, aside from needing to get better control of my anxiety, but I have a follow-up diagnostic test this week. In other health-related news, I've been working on improving my sleep routine, with the help of my Google Home, and I'm having an easier time getting to sleep.

I was inspired by a couple of dear friends to start a blog series called "Strengthening My Foundation." I will go into more detail on the backstory in the first post, but the idea behind it is a self-care experiment on myself. I struggle from being unable to find enough time and energy to balance blogging, my fulltime job, my family, my house, my hobbies and my own self-care. Something needs to be sacrificed and I've been struggling with what. However, in this experiment, I would prioritize my own self-care with the belief that it will give me more energy (and indirectly, more time) to focus on all the other aspects of my life.

Blogging

In other blog news, I have until January to make three affiliate sales with Amazon so I can become an Amazon Affiliate. I only have a couple links up now, so I really need to get some more up. I was thinking about doing some of my favorite bullet journaling supplies, but I'm not sure yet.

As I have said before, my brain is overflowing with blog post ideas, but I just can't find enough time to write. If you could take a moment to check off the posts you are most interested in below, I'd appreciate it. This will help me better prioritize my writing!

Planning a Walt Disney World Vacation

I’m going to Walt Disney World!

Sorry, I don’t mean to brag, but I’m super excited that I am once again visiting the most magical and happiest place on earth!

Disney is so much more than an amusement park to me. As someone who is terrified of roller coasters, prone to motion sickness, and gets super anxious around crowds, Walt Disney World is a magical place where my fear and anxiety melt away. I feel safe. Only in Disney do I happily talk to complete strangers and ask for help when I need it. I constantly push the boundaries of my motion sickness and my fear because it feels safe to do so. This scaredy-cat would never vacation alone anywhere else, but if my husband didn’t also adore Disney, I would be headed there on my own in a heartbeat. It’s comfortable and I understand why so many Disney fans refer to it as “home”.

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Planning for Disney is a great self care tactic for me. I find the organization and research fun and soothing. Planning isn’t for everyone, but for those who do like planning, it makes a trip to Disney even better! Planning for Disney also REALLY pays off. With planning, you can avoid crowds, get to go on way more rides, and eat at the places you want to eat. Disney puts a lot of information online including complete menus for all their eateries. They also allow you to book fastpasses (sort of like reservations for rides) up to 60 days in advance and their version of dining reservations 180 days in advance.

I went to Disney (both world and land) many times when I was a kid. There was a gap for over a decade when I didn’t go because college and grad. school. However, my husband and I went there for our honeymoon in January 2015. Then we returned in 2017, 2018 and 2019. I also had an extra bonus single day Animal Kingdom adventure in the fall of 2018. I think it’s safe to say I’ve had a lot of experience planning WDW trips recently. Given my naturally nervous nature, I read a lot of articles, make spreadsheets, listen to podcasts and investigate the best touring strategies.

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Last year, for the the first (in forrrreevvverrr) , we brought two friends with us to Disney. One of the friends had never been before. These two (non-couple) friends both enjoyed their trip so much that they are going to WDW again. Not just again, but with me. And not just with me but on my next trip! I did not expect them to go again so soon. While most of the credit goes to Disney and to our mutual friendships, of course, I’m going to give a bit of that credit to my travel agent and tour guide skills.

I'm going to be sharing my planning experience here. My strategies, tips and tricks, moments from my previous vacations and more. I would love to help you plan your next Disney trip or answer some of your Disney questions. Please leave suggestions for topics, questions and comments below.

What do you want to know about planning a Walt Disney World vacation?