It didn’t rain ALL the time

Earlier in our Epcot day, we had actual sunshine and clear skies (well, by midday it was clear – it went downhill from there). We got to the park mid-morning and headed straight to fake France for coffee and croissants.


After breakfast we went back to the front of the park (the fake-future part) to see Spaceship Earth and The Land and The Sea, where we found these guys.

Then we went back to the World Showcase and got rained on.

Taking advantage of the rain

I mentioned the rain the day we went to Epcot, right?  Well, I forgot I had proof on video. While everyone with any sense was hiding out under every structure with a roof in the park, one duck took the opportunity to scout for food.

We were hoping for a break in the rain so I could make a dash for the nearest bathroom. Over the course of our four days in Disney parks, I got very familiar with the bathrooms. Surprisingly, the one in fake Canada was the worst. Fake Morocco’s was great.

I got a fever of a hundred and three

We spent 15 minutes in the hotel hot tub last night, and I can STILL smell the chlorine.  Also, I’m still sweating.  Today’s high didn’t even hit 70 degrees.

Not ready for it to be over

(Written on the plane, posted later)

At the end of most vacations, while I haven’t been happy for the vacation to end, I’ve been happy to be going home, or at least ready for it. Not so much with this one. I’m not sure what’s different. I’ve hardly thought about work, and I still have days before I have to, so I don’t think it’s work avoidance. I’m not reluctant to go back to Oregon – I like it there, and there are things I’m planning to do once we get home. As much as I love Disney World and I hated to leave it last night (even though it was POURING DOWN RAIN again during the fireworks and as we were leaving), we had done everything there was to do, so I don’t feel like I’m missing anything by leaving it. But after fewer than four hours of sleep, a five-and-a-half hour cross-country flight, and a two-hour layover in LAX, I was fighting this urge to postpone our flight to Oregon for a couple of days and check out LA. Maybe it’s sleep deprivation. I overcame that urge and got on the plane to Portland, and we’re not even going straight home, so I don’t really know what I’m talking about anymore. Maybe it’s sleep deprivation. The plan is to spend the afternoon and night in Portland (bedtime will be SO early), meet up with Will and Christina in the morning, and go to this fairy/fantasy-themed festival thing tomorrow. I’m picturing a renaissance fair with fairies, but I don’t really know what it’ll be like. I’ll let you know how it goes. THEN we go home.

Oh, but now I’m on the plane to Portland, NOT sitting next to John because the airline surprised us with upgrades to first class. I have no idea why we got the upgrades, and I’m not complaining. I can manage being two rows away from him for less than three hours. American is my new favorite airline.

I usually have Disney songs within easy reach in my brain (most of the time it’s “Part of Your World” and “A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes”), but for the last three days, I’ve been cycling through “Let It Go”, “Be Our Guest”, and “We Can Fly”. Can’t get rid of them. Not sure I want to (although “Let It Go” is free to go away whenever it wants). Maybe it’s sleep deprivation.

I probably won’t have time to write tomorrow, but hopefully I’ll be back to my regular posting schedule by Sunday. With pictures.

Tropical storm woes

Gulf-side tropical storms are trying to put a damper on our vacation.  (Get it?  Damper?  Eh, who needs ya.)  We got a full-out downpour at Epcot yesterday, and plenty of rain in the Magic Kingdom today, including first thing when we walked out of the hotel.  Ponchos were useful, but our shoes got SOAKED.  John is taking the hair dryer to them now.  The rain didn’t stop the fireworks, though, and they were wonderful.  One more day in the Magic Kingdom, and then we head back to Oregon.

Sigh.  I love the Magic Kingdom.  Pictures to come later because I’m too lazy to transfer them.

All the Star Wars

We did all the Star Wars things (and a couple of other things) at Hollywood Studios on Monday, and it was GREAT. If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you saw some of it there.  Here’s some more.IMG_20160829_124407






Some not-Star Wars:



Fun facts from the Hard Rock Hotel

The mirror in our room at the Hard Rock Hotel marks how tall various rock stars are.  I’m happy to know that I am taller than Madonna (she’s 5’4″) and surprised that Beyonce and I are the same height.  Twins, right?  Adele is taller than me – had no idea she was 5’9″.  John was relieved to see he’s taller than Justin Timberlake and a bit annoyed to find out he’s the same height as James Taylor.


When we were in Orlando four years ago, we went to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal with Ryan, and it was amazing.  THEN, Universal added a whole new section, and it’s BETTER.  It’s bigger, and it’s perfect. The first part, the part we’d seen before, is Hogsmeade and Hogwarts.  The new part is Diagon Alley, and the reveal as you walk in is just like in the movies.  Takes your breath away (and maybe I got a little happy-teary).  I’m not going to tell you everything or show you pictures because you have to go and see it for yourself.

If you’re meh about Harry Potter, you’ll be meh about this, but for the rest of us…it was amazing.

Hi from Orlando!

So…we’re here, mid-vacation.  Posting may be spotty.  I hope you’ll forgive me (and I’m sure you will because all five of you are lovely people) for missing a day here and there BECAUSE I’M ON VACATION!!!


Vacation reading plan

Yes, I have a vacation reading plan.  I finished my last library book Sunday night, so Monday I picked my tablet up again (Kindle app) for the first time in months.  I’ve got my tablet with me for most of my reading needs (plane, nighttime, plane again), and I picked up a couple of used paperbacks before we left as backups for poolside reading and in case my tablet’s battery dies on the plane (which is entirely possible – I will be looking for an actual Kindle soon).

This is all assuming I’ll be doing a lot of reading, which is actually less likely than normal.  Yes on the plane and in the airports during our multiple layovers, but will we spend much time at the pool when we have Universal and Disney to explore (and wedding stuff to do)?  Probably not. Will we be exhausted when we get back to hotel room at night?  Probably.  BUT.  I like to be prepared.  I can think of few things worse than having downtime and no book to read.  Hence the plan.

Who’s rushing?

We got to Orlando late last night (after midnight), found our way to a hotel near the airport, and crashed.  This morning (Thursday) we slept in a little and then transferred to the Hard Rock Hotel, which is WAY COOL.  Our room wasn’t ready (we were early), so we left our bags and walked over the City Walk just outside Universal Studios.  Got a drink, and now we’re sitting outside in the shade with a breeze, just sitting.  Reading a little.  People-watching a little.  We’re waiting for our room, waiting to hear back from Evans and other friends about when John can try on his tux, just waiting.  No pressure, no rush.  Sure, we want to get into the park, but Evans has the tickets and if that happens later or tomorrow, no big deal.

Like, really, no big deal.  It’s life-changing.

U2’s “Where the Streets Have No Name” just came on and you can see the tension leave both of us.  Happy vacation, us.


Because vacation is magic

(Written Tuesday night)

All of my stress is going to melt away as soon as we get on our plane.  I know it will.  Because it will.  Tuesday was for laundry and packing.  Wednesday morning is for running around the house trying to figure out what I haven’t packed.  Later Wednesday morning will be for getting in the car with enough time to get to Portland, park in long-term parking, and get to the airport.  Drop off our luggage, get through security, hopefully not have to sprint for the gate, and then?  Then peace.  Then reading.  THEN NO MORE STRESS.  No stress for a whole week and a half.

I need this.  You can’t take it away from me.

We’re going to Disney World!

We are going on an honest-to-god vacation TOMORROW.  Our road trip across the country was kinda fun, but we were moving – it doesn’t count as a vacation.  This will be the first trip we’ve taken together in quite some time that didn’t have some other motive, and it is way overdue.  Okay, fine.  There’s another motive, but only for the first three days.  John’s friend Ryan is getting married, and he lives in Orlando, so we’re going for the wedding (which is going to be so fun) and THEN we’re going to Disney World.

I’m so excited.  I love Disney World.  We’re staying at a Disney resort (I KNOW!), so we get EXTRA SPECIAL STUFF like Extra Magic Hours and…other stuff, I’m sure, but it’s the Extra Magic Hours that I care about.  And because we’re staying in a resort, we get these fancy wristbands that work as our room keys and our park tickets and we can pay for stuff with them and EVERYTHING.  AND THEY HAVE OUR NAMES ON THEM.  AND I GOT TO CHOOSE THE COLORS.  LOOK!!!!!!


Okay, I’m excited.  I will be singing Disney songs for days.

But the wedding, yeah.  The wedding will be fun.  (For real – stay tuned for maximum fun.)

(I need this vacation so bad.)


Why haven’t I learned this lesson?

You know what I hate?  I hate when I think Oh, I’ll write about that.  I’ll just jot down a note so I don’t forget, and then I DON’T jot down that note and I can’t remember what it was.  Seriously, I hate that.  Like, SO much.

I also need to stop writing about how I can’t remember things without writing them down.  LAME.

It’s a beautiful day, and I’m going to go outside for a few minutes.  Right now.  Look at me go.  Really, if this were a video, you wouldn’t be able to see me anymore.  You’d hear footsteps walking away and my voice fading as I got to the door.  The door opens, the door closes.  Silence.

Yeah, I’m going outside.

Owning it


The other night, John and I went to Will and Christina’s house (new house – they live in Eugene now YAY!) for a friendly game of DUN DUN DUN….Dungeons and Dragons.  Yes, we are great big grown-up nerds, and we had a really good time.  John DM’d it, and Christina did her best to save our butts.

I chipped in by buying themed wine.  We drank this one, and I will be buying it again.  Good stuff.


We didn’t get to this one, but it looks promising.  I’ll let you know.


You know, I just took a closer look at the actual bottle, and there’s a picture of a squid on it.  That makes it decidedly less appetizing.  I’ll take the hit, though.  I’ll do that for you.


It’s 96 degrees right now, after three days in a row over 100, and you know?  96 doesn’t feel better.  Tomorrow should.  I hope.  In the meantime, this whole no central AC in Oregon thing is a PROBLEM.  John is in Salem for a gig tonight, outside, probably no shade, so he’s got it worse than I do, but that’s not going to stop me from complaining.  My problems are still real!  This constant sheen of sweat is pretty darn gross.

I’m going to beat it as best I can.  I’m inside with a big box fan pointed right at me (and NOT pulling hot outside air in).  My laptop is on the coffee table streaming tonight’s Olympic track and field events so I can see the 5000m final live (yes, I moved my massage appointment – priorities!), I’ll be ordering food soon, and I have chilled white wine waiting for me.  I’m not sure why I haven’t opened it yet, actually.  Let me fix that.

IMG_20160820_164252Better.  And I’m chilling my wine chiller so I can just leave the bottle out next to me.  Let’s face it – John won’t be home for HOURS, and I plan to read and watch the Olympics all evening.

Watching it “live”

I turned on the TV so I could have the Olympics on in the background while I wrote, and the women’s 5K is just starting.  Good timing for me.  I mean, I’m sure it was hours ago, but the men’s 5K was the race that was so awesome at the trials, so I’m excited.

Ooh, this is like live-blogging.  And by “like live-blogging”, I mean it is live-blogging.  Except that this probably happened hours ago.  But it’s happening right now on my TV!

Okay, the Japanese woman in the lead (right at the beginning) is wearing sunglasses.  No one else is wearing sunglasses.  Maybe her eyes are super sensitive to light?  It looks a little weird.

They’re running in tankinis.  I noticed that for some of the races (running and swimming), the athletes have been more covered up than in the past, but apparently not this one.  I just can’t imagine running in underwear.

Aaaaannnnd I’m back to hating NBC TV coverage. They just cut away from the race for commercials.  It only takes 15 minutes!  I have a 15-minute attention span, NBC, and I WANT TO SEE THIS RACE.  We’re switching to the website.

Wait, they’re back.  Oh, and they cut away to an old race.  COME ON.

Back, and the leader (who is no longer the Japanese woman) is WAY out in front.  Let’s see if she keeps that kind of lead.

Oh, whoops, there goes her lead.  But MAN, she looks relaxed.  That’s my goal.  I don’t need to hit that kind of speed (sub 5-minute miles – like I’ll ever come close), but I need to look that comfortable.

DAMN they’re going fast.

Oh, they look so happy!  I’m avoiding say WHO looks so happy because SOME people like to watch their races without knowing who won.  I know I was complaining about the NBC TV coverage, but at least if you’re watching it on TV, they assume you’re watching it “live” and they don’t tell you who won.  Online, for any events that are over, you can’t avoid knowing the winner when you search for the videos.  Believe me, I tried.  Even the URLs for the videos have the winners in them.  And yeah, I’ll watch them anyway, but most of the excitement is NOT KNOWING HOW IT ENDS.

I’m seriously thinking about moving my massage appointment tomorrow so I can be home to watch the actual livestream of the men’s 5000m final and NOT know who won.  John will be away (gig), but then when he watches it later, I can safely search for the video and start it for him.  Yeah, I might do that.



These crackers are SO good.  You should buy them.  Then eat them.

That is all.


Work has been so nuts lately that it’s messing with my brain in every other aspect of my life. I haven’t shut down my work laptop in a week because I have too many open documents, emails, tabs, notes, anything you can think of, all unfinished.  I’m disorganized, and I can’t find the time during the work day to fix it.  I refuse on principle to take the time out of the rest of my day to do it because my work days have been getting too long already.  That may not be the best plan, though.

So I’m disorganized at work, and because I feel like I can’t think straight for 9 to 10 hours a day (if I’m lucky), I can’t shake it when I stop working.  I haven’t sorted through the mail in weeks (hope there’s nothing important in there), laundry is sporadic, basically only done when necessary, and I’m starting to worry about being ready for our trip next week.  That worry was inevitable, of course, but I need to get a grip.

I know – I’m going back to my lists.  That’ll work.

Losing daylight

It’s August, the sun is coming up later in the morning, and for inexplicable reasons (some misplaced dedication to work?), I’m getting up earlier during the week. And that means it’s dark.  I am up before the sun rises (it was still dark when I started this post), and I’m of two minds about it.  Maybe three.

First mind: I like being up (once I’m up), and being up this early means I have the entire day ahead of me.  When I get up after the sun is up, I feel like I’ve lost precious hours.  Not work hours – they’re not precious, although I do feel massively behind if I don’t start work early.  I mostly feel like I’ve lost hours when I sleep in on weekends.

Second mind: *whining* It’s daa-aark out there, and I should still be sleeeeeping.

Third mind…no, just two.  Two is enough.