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Halloween Time at The Disneyland Resort Begins September 9 + Mickey’s Halloween Party Dates

It’s hard to believe that another year has almost gone by since Halloween was here! Here it is, the middle of summer and I’m absolutely giddy about the arrival of Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort and this year it begins September 9th! halloween-timeI can’t even tell you which part of it I’m most excited for because there is so much going on at the Resort during that time of year. Plus, it also begins the entire Holiday Seasondisney-wallMickey’s Halloween Party 
So, let’s first talk about Mickey’s Halloween Party, because that’s what Disney lovers of all ages look forward to during all year, right? The event requires a separate ticket and takes place on 17 select nights, beginning Friday, Sept. 23, inside of Disneyland. Entry to Disneyland Park before the party is included with a Mickey’s Halloween Party ticket. Guests have the opportunity to play in Disneyland park for three hours before the party starts, and then go trick or treating , for candy and healthy treats,  in the ultimate Disney neighborhood.

Mickey’s Halloween Party has some extra thrilling surprises around every corner and treats party guests to some unforgettable experiences including:

  • The eerie atmosphere along Main Street, U.S.A., animated Halloween images (ghosts, bats, pumpkins and skeletons) appear and disappear mysteriously on the facades of buildings throughout the evening
  • The ghoulish Cadaver Dans quartet performs Halloween tunes aboard a drifting graveyard-themed raft, on the fog-filled Rivers of America in New Orleans Square and Frontierland halloween-time-at-the-disneyland-resort-dans
  • The sensational “Halloween Screams” fireworks spectacular, which is a guest favorite presented exclusively for guests of Mickey’s Halloween Party and is hosted by “Master of Scare-omonies” Jack Skellington. "Halloween Screams-A Villainous Surprise in the Skies"
  • A family-friendly dance party to rock out to at Tomorrowland Terrace
  • Disney Villains at select locations for photos and character greetings
  • Mickey Mouse and his pals dressed in their Halloween costumes
  • Nearly all the favorite Disneyland rides and attractions will be open to party guests, plus Haunted Mansion Holiday and Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy.
  • New for Mickey’s Halloween Party in 2016, The Headless Horseman of Sleepy Hollow rides his ghostly black steed and carries his flickering jack-o-lantern through the heart of Disneyland, heralding the arrival of Mickey’s Halloween Party character cavalcade, (The character is from Disney’s animated feature, “The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad.”)

Adults and children are encouraged to dress in costume for the party as they trick-or-treat throughout Disneyland for a scary good time. For costume policy guidelines, please check http://www.Disneyland.com for prior your arrival, so you don’t have any surprises. Tickets for Mickey’s Halloween Party* go on sale for Disneyland Resort Annual Passholders, Disney Vacation Club members and Disney Visa card holders on Thursday, July 21. General public ticket sales begin Thursday, July 28.

HALLOWEEN TIME AT THE DISNEYLAND RESORT (ANAHEIM, Calif.) – Haunted Mansion Holiday brings the frightfully fun cheer of “Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas" to the Disneyland Resort. The friendly spooks of Halloween Time return in 2016 from Sept. 9 through Oct. 31 along with fun seasonal décor, themed food and beverage offerings and attractions that get a special seasonal overlay for Halloween Time. (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland)

What Else To Expect During Halloween Time
Now let’s talk about Halloween Time in general at the Disneyland Resort. Whether you are going to attend one of the ticketed Mickey’s Halloween Party Nights or just visiting the Parks during Halloween Time, you’re going to be in Halloween awe!  Some of the temporary Halloween offerings include:

  • Jack Skellington makes his annual appearance in Disneyland to take over the Haunted Mansion and bring Haunted Mansion Holiday back to New Orleans Square. Haunted Mansion Holiday is inspired by the classic animated film “Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas” and transforms the Mansion with a collision of Halloween spookiness and Christmas cheer. Oct. 3, 2016 marks the 15th anniversary of this special attraction’s premiere in Disneyland.HALLOWEEN TIME AT THE DISNEYLAND RESORT (ANAHEIM, Calif.) – Haunted Mansion Holiday brings the frightfully fun cheer of “Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas" to the Disneyland Resort. The friendly spooks of Halloween Time return in 2016 from Sept. 9 through Oct. 31 along with fun seasonal décor, themed food and beverage offerings and attractions that get a special seasonal overlay for Halloween Time. (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland)
  • Guests in search of Halloween chills may “drop in” to visit the ghostly full-time residents of The Twilight Zone™ Tower of Terror in Disney California Adventure. Here, in the remains of the Hollywood Tower Hotel, dwell the spirits of hotel guests who disappeared during a “supernatural” event on Halloween Night in 1939. halloween-time-at-the-disneyland-resort-TOT
  • Spooky Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy in Tomorrowland draws guests back again and again during the Halloween season. The unique Halloween-themed experience launches voyagers into a haunted section of the universe, where ghosts appear out of the starry darkness and swirling galaxies of Space Mountain, reaching out as if to grab guests as they speed through space. The exhilarating drops and curves are punctuated by piercing screams, creepy sound effects and haunting music.
  • On select, non-Mickey’s Halloween Party nights, guests visiting Disneyland will enjoy a special treat: the “Fantasy in the Sky” fireworks spectacular. In addition, the dynamic “Mickey’s Soundsational Parade” will march down Main Street, U.S.A., each day throughout Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort.
  • Also, in Frontierland, the traditional Dia de los Muertos is observed through Tuesday, Nov. 1, with a holiday skeleton display in the plaza near the entrance of Rancho del Zocalo. Park 10-12-09

Ticket Information and Purchases for Mickey’s Halloween Party 
Tickets for Mickey’s Halloween Party* may be purchased online and on mobile devices at Disneyland.com/party, as well as at the Disneyland Resort main gate and by phone at 714-781-4400. Guests may check for availability for the 17 nights: Friday, Sept. 23; Monday, Sept. 26, Wednesday, Sept. 28; Friday, Sept. 30; Monday, Oct. 3; Wednesday, Oct. 5; Friday, Oct. 7; Monday, Oct. 10; Wednesday, Oct. 12; Friday, Oct. 14; Monday, Oct. 17; Wednesday, Oct. 19; Friday, Oct. 21; Monday, Oct. 24; Wednesday, Oct. 26; Saturday, Oct. 29; and Monday, Oct. 31, Halloween night.

Tickets purchased in advance are available at a discount on select nights. Tickets purchased on the day of the event are $89 each. All tickets to Mickey’s Halloween Party on Saturday, Oct. 29, and Monday, Oct. 31, are $99 each. Mickey’s Halloween Party is a non-smoking event. Smoking will be permitted only in the Esplanade outside the Disneyland main entrance. Please note: Online and mobile purchases are not available the day of the event. Parking is not included in the ticket price, and parking fees will apply.

MICKEY'S HALLOWEEN PARTY (ANAHEIM, Calif.) – The “Halloween Screams” fireworks spectacular lights up the skies surrounding Sleeping Beauty Castle at Disneyland park, as part of the entertainment exclusive to the annual Mickey's Halloween Party. Returning for 17 nights in 2016, beginning Friday, Sept. 23, Mickey’s Halloween Party is a time for guests to dress up for a ghoulish good time and enjoy seasonal scares such as Space Mountain Ghost Galaxy and Haunted Mansion Holiday. (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland)

For more information about Halloween Time at the Disneyland Resort, please visit here. Entertainment and attractions are subject to change without notice. Also, don’t forget that Guests may currently enjoy the Disneyland Diamond Celebration which continues through Labor Day, Sept. 5!

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are 100% my own. Some images are property of the Disneyland Resort. 

 

Your Love For Disney…..When Did It Start For YOU? #DisneySMMC #WDIS4U

 

when-did-it-start-for-youAs a mom who loves Disney and shares A LOT about Disney online, it was such an honor for me to receive an invitation to the 2015 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. I am so grateful for all of the opportunities we (the attendees) received at the celebration, including access to hear amazing speakers like Jeffrey Epstein from D23.  Jeffrey’s presentation at the conference had me teary-eyed (in a good, Disney way, of course) and beyond emotional. He shared one of D23’s latest campaigns with us called “When Did It Start For You?“.

when-did-it-start-for-youThe campaign asks Disney fans to share when they first remember falling in love with Disney and becoming a lifelong fan. It was fun to watch different clips of celebrities, a Disney Legend, some current Imagineers, and even some D23 fans. I couldn’t help but tear up as I watched each video. Listening to these people who all shared a common Disney bond share about their own personal reasons for loving Disney and feeling inspired by Disney was something I could relate to.

when-did-it-start-for-youWhat inspired me the most though was when I looked up at the screen and realized there was a “When Did It Start For You” clip of someone that I knew up there! She’s mostly an acquaintance I know online, which is how this whole social media thing works, but regardless, to look up and hear Ashley speaking about her own experience was literally speaking straight to my own heart! The picture of her as a young girl was adorable!

Ashley-telling-her-own-storyIt really hit home when she proceeded to talk about being bullied and how her love for Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” was her own escape from the ugliness of bullying. The “Ashley” I know online is a fun-loving, adorable Disney girl who posts tons of beautiful Disney photos. I had NO IDEA  about all she’d been through and that she’d overcome so much.  I admire her immensely for sharing her story on the big screen!

Watch her story here (you’ll probably need a tissue):

for-me

I’m trying to remember when it started for me? I can’t remember exactly though. I think I was a baby! I grew up living pretty close to Disneyland. When our family did visit Disneyland (it was a single park back then), it was in the summer and we always had to make the most of one day, from park opening to park closing. It wasn’t like present day where so many people are fortunate enough to have an Annual Pass and can just visit for a couple hours at a time.

thats-meI only have faint memories of my early Disneyland days. I can recall things like The Matterhorn, Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, and It’s a Small World. I remember eating lunch at Carnation Gardens and I remember watching the Main Street Electrical Parade at night.

main-street-electrical-paradeOur day at Disneyland was like the one day a year I didn’t fight with my younger brother since we were too busy being in awe of all the magic! What I do remember is that it was all about being with our little family and creating memories together.

memories-1As I got older, my love for Disney continued to grow and I’d visit Disneyland with my friends (and no parents. One of my high school dreams was to dance in one of the Disneyland parades. I never had the technical training to make it to the final cuts of Disney auditions, but I will say that it was fun to spend hours and hours on the old backlot of Disneyland where they used to hold the auditions.

twiceLuckily for me, they created a parade for Disney’s 45th anniversary that guests could actually dance in. It was called “The Parade of the Stars” and guests were picked up along Main Street, U.S.A. in the Omnibus and taken backstage to learn their parts.

parade-of-the-stars

We got to dance the entire parade route from It’s a Small World to the top of Main Street, U.S.A.! I danced in it on two different occasions, so it was a dream come true…twice! They even gave each of us a commemorative pin for participating.

pinOnce I became a mom, my love for Disney was something that I quickly passed on to my own daughter. Her first visit to the parks was at Christmas time when she was just 7 months old. I don’t know how much she remembers about that particular visit, but when she was about a year and a half, she and I started visiting the parks together approximately 2-3 days a week together.

tiny-tinker-bell

emily-and-mommyMy daughter and I watched “The Parade of Dreams” so many times during its run at Disneyland! Now, just hearing the music from that parade brings back all of the fun memories we created together when she was really little.

never-end

disney-sideI would say that my love for Disney has come full circle because now I’m here blogging about it too. I could go on typing thousands of words about this topic too, but I think everyone gets the message loud and clear. “When Did It Start For You?” is something we can ALL relate to. It’s fun to hear others’ personal stories.

Do YOU have a particular memory or reason for when it all started for YOU? Share with me in the comments!

When a Cast Member Makes a Magical First Impression on You! Meet One of My Favorites: Ronna From Disney’s Yacht Club! #DisneySMMC

They say that first impressions are everything and I completely agree with that statement. You never truly get a chance to re-do a first impression. This is especially true in businesses such as restaurants, stores, and hotels. When a guest walks into an establishment for some type of service,  they start to form an opinion about that place of business based on the way they were treated by the first person they encountered who was working there.

first-impressions-are-everythingMy family and I recently took our first trip to Walt Disney World Resort for the 2015 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration. We were so excited to be all booked at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort during our trip! After taking the red-eye from Southern California to Orlando, Florida, we finally arrived at our destination around 6:30 a.m. on a very minimal amount of sleep. I may, or may not, have entered the lobby of Disney’s Yacht Club while sleep walking. As I entered the check-in line, I was immediately greeted at the front desk by one of the sweetest cast members in the place! Talk about making a lasting first impression! Even as I sit here writing this post, I miss that sweet lady.

disneys-yacht-club-resortHer name was Ronna and she was just beginning her shift that day. As I glanced over the counter, into her work area, I noticed she had a few personal items, such as pens and a paper pad, that were purple! I love purple! I didn’t even need to ask if purple was her favorite color because it was so obvious.

how-fun-are-her-purple-accessoriesMy asking her immediately sparked such a pleasant conversation between us, as she proceeded to check me (and my family that was sleeping on a couch in the hotel lobby at that moment) into our room. I also noticed that Ronna was from Chicago, specifically from the same area that I have family. Again, we hit it off talking about Chicago.

look-for-ronnaI appreciated how much time Ronna took to thoroughly explain everything I needed to know about the hotel to me. There was a lot to take in and get to know about this giant resort hotel, as well as the parks. I could see why Disney had hired Ronna to work for them…because she’s a magical person who makes magic for guests….which is exactly what a cast member is supposed to do!

meet-cast-member-RonnaFor the duration of our stay, I kept checking the front desk, each time we’d walk by, to see if Ronna was working. I finally learned that she also works next door at the front desk at Disney’s Beach Club  Resort (it’s an adjacent property to the Yacht Club). On our last day, just before leaving on The Magical Express for the airport, we finally found her working again. I re-introduced myself (but of course she remembered me) and told her that I wanted to thank her again for being so kind. I think she was a little surprised that I came back to tell her that.

we-heart-ronnaThen I asked if we could take a picture together and if I could also photograph her alone. I think she almost cried happy tears from my request, which made me also get happy tears in my eyes! As you can see from the pictures, Ronna is absolutely adorable and I hope we get to go back there someday soon and visit her when we do! She was our first impression of the Walt Disney World Resort and I’d have to say that she made a magical one.

Have YOU had any magical experiences with Disney Cast Members before? If so, where were you and how did they make an impression on you?

My Advice For Anyone Who Has the Dream of Being Invited to the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration! #DisneySMMC

itll-happen-for-you-too

I was so honored to receive my first invitation this year to the 2015 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration! Since I’m a first-timer, I have no idea of what exactly to expect, I just know that it’s going to be magical and I fully intend to take in everything about this once in a lifetime experience!

THE-emailMy love for Disney runs deep and I’m very active on social medias in the Disney community, but I wasn’t one of “the invited” last year. Although it was disappointing for me not to be invited last year, I knew that there probably just wasn’t enough pixie dust for everyone to be invited and thought perhaps it just wasn’t my time last year.

we-all-get-different-perks-frameI want to share a a little bit about my own experience for those are hoping to be invited to the event in the future. I’ve had several people actually ask me what they need to do or how to get invited. I’m only sharing from my own experience and I don’t have “the formula” or “the secret” for how to get invited, but if what I share can help someone else, then I hope it will. Some of the things I’m going to share are actually pretty basic.

chearingOne of the biggest, most important things to do is to support others online in a positive way. Be happy for them! Congratulate them! Comment on their photos, tweets, and Facebook statuses! I can’t tell you to be genuinely happy for others if you’re not, but this is something I do. Honestly, it’s not something you can fake. If you have it in your character than do it! Those are the kinds of people that Disney wants at their events anyway. I might also add that it is the way you conduct yourself when you DON’T get something you’re hoping for that will show your true character!

conduct-yourselfThey’re watching you right now. As much as those who are being pixie-dusted with invites are in the spotlight, so are those who are right there supporting them. Make a good impression online and they will remember it for the future. (By the way, I don’t know exactly who “they” are, I’m just referring to the people you want to notice you!)

pixie-dustI’ve learned  that pixie dust tends to fly in several different waves. What that means for you is that there is still a chance! I have seen initial rounds of invitations sent and then another wave of invitations go out later that night or the next morning. Then, I’ve seen even later rounds of invites go out. Remember, there will be people who will unable to attend, for whatever reason, and sadly will have to decline their invitation. Hold out hope. It can still happen for you. If it doesn’t this year, there’s always next year.

hold-out-hopeThere are a couple of things you can do to become more active, and hopefully noticed by the right people. Have you considered signing up with MomSelect? You can register as “a mom” or “a mom blogger” and there are often wonderful opportunities to do such things as throw a Disney Side at Home Celebration, which you may have seen happening online. There are also other fun opportunities too, but if you haven’t registered yourself yet, you’ll want to do so right now!

disney-side-at-home-celebrationsAnother suggestion would be to stay active on as many of the social media channels as possible! If you are only on Facebook, consider putting yourself out there more on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Google +, etc. Personally, my most favorite social medias are Twitter and Instagram. There is also a great group to join on Facebook called Disney Social Media Moms: Alumni & Hopefuls. Request to join and get to know a bunch of the other Disney Moms (and Dads). I’ve made a ton of friends this way.

keep-calm-framedMy last suggestion is to do something I did last year. It’s the most fun thing, too! If you didn’t (or don’t) receive an invitation to this year’s Disney Social Media Moms Celebration, then you can actually register to be invited to one of this summer’s Disney Social Media Moms “On-the-Road” Celebrations! It’s a one-day conference where you get to connect with a ton of other Disney Moms, as well as the Disney Team! This is what I did last year and it was SO much fun! I’m actually hoping to go again this summer too.

?????As soon as the site opens up to register for the interest list, you’ll start seeing people post about it online. Then, you too can go register and then wait…and hopefully YOU’LL get an invite to join one of the locations! I attended the one in Phoenix, Arizona last year and it was a wonderful experience.  I even got to meet Grumpy Cat at the conference last year! It’s a very magical experience and something a Disney Social Media Mom (or Dad) should strive to attend.

dreams-framed

I hope my suggestions are helpful ones. I still can’t contain my excitement about attending the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration this year in Florida and can’t believe I’m going to Disney World! I hope you’ll follow along online! Look for the #DisneySMMC hashtag! ChEARs!

were-going-to-disney-world

 

 

I’m Going to the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration! (We’ve Got a First-Timer Here!)

im-goingYesterday was the most “magical” Friday ever! I had absolutely no idea that invitations for the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration were even going out yet.  I suppose if I hadn’t been at work, teaching 29 little busy bees all day and had been online, I may have seen the tweet that practically broke Twitter…in a good way, of course!

magical-fridayI’m kind of glad I didn’t see it though because I would’ve become an instant ball of nerves afterwards, checking my email obsessively! Instead, I finished up an exhausting day of teaching without knowing a thing, dismissed the students, and found THIS on my email front page!

omgoodnessI think my heart skipped a beat and I honestly stood there, wanting to take in the moment before daring to click it! Something from “Walt Disney World Special Events”? WHOA! So, that whole “moment” I was taking before clicking it lasted about as long as it took for me to snap this picture! I swear I heard a drumroll in my head as I clicked it and BAM!

THE-emailThere I was, jumping up and down in my classroom, all by myself! I didn’t want to post about it online until I could tell the rest of my family, but I also didn’t want any part of the Disney Team to think me ungrateful if I didn’t, especially since Twitter was going crazy with the new #DisneySMMC hashtag! However, my husband and daughter were unreachable at the moment…yep, they were on a trip with my daughter’s school and actually down in the mines, learning about The Gold Rush! What are the chances? I had to wait about 2 hours after reading my magical email to tell them! Talk about suspense! Everything worked out in the end but that sure seemed like the longest 2 hours of my life!

were-going-to-disney-worldI am so grateful for this opportunity and cannot wait to see what’s in store for us in May!

The Girl With the Disneyland Map Skirt at Disney’s 24-Hour Event!

As Mickey’s Trick or Treat party at Disneyland gets closer, I’ve been looking through pictures and trying to get costume ideas. As I was going through some of the pictures I’ve taken at Disneyland Resort, I came across some that I took of this adorable girl who was wearing the cutest outfit at Disney’s 24-hour event in May. I didn’t realize just HOW cute, until we got up close to her and realized that her skirt was made from park maps!

skirt

I just HAD TO approach her to ask where she got the skirt! That’s when she showed me her matching bow and told me she’d made them both! Oh my goodness! I loved her creativity and Emi looked instantly inspired by her! She was such a sweet person to talk to also, which is always nice.

bow

I, of course, didn’t grab her contact info that day and I think she said she isn’t on Twitter or Instagram (good for her). I suppose one day I’ll run into her again and I”ll be able to ask if she could make a skirt and bow for Emi, because Emi has been dying to have her very own ever since that day and can’t seem to duplicate it. (believe me, she’s tried!) I know the power of social media is strong because it’s helped me find people before.  Plus, I think she lives locally.

Did you attend Disney’s 24-hour event in May? Did you see “The Girl in the Disneyland Map Skirt”?

 

Help Me Find This Couple from Disney’s 24-Hour Event! They Got Engaged! #RockYourDisneySide

I was just going through my pictures from Disney’s Rock Your Disney Side 24-hour event back in May, when I came across some that I totally forgot about.  As Emi and I were walking around that day, I had my camera out and ready to snap pics. Just as we approached Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, there were a bunch of people standing around and I witnessed the end of an engagement! This adorable couple, dressed as Belle and Beast, was in the center of the crowd. I knew something special was happening so I started snapping pics. Emi totally missed it but I got a few. They seemed very shy and although the PhotoPass people took some pics, I think it was just really quick and then they were done. I never got to chase after them to tell them I caught a few of the pics because I felt like I’d be interrupting their moment. I know that no one else caught these other pictures of them though and looking at them again, I see that it was “Belle’s” birthday! (her name is Yela) I’m guessing he arranged Photopass to snap a castle pic for them, letting her believe it was just for her birthday and then broke out a ring! That’s my best guess, but I’m a total fantasizer! I believe in fairytales! Regardless of the real details, I know that they’d want these pictures, because I know I would if it were me, so I’m determined to find them, so I can give them the pictures! I was tearing up adding these to this post. I think you’ll tear up too! Just look….

Beast proposing to BelleBeast and Belle engaged! Beast and Belle 1 Beast and Belle 2Beast and Belle hugging

Belle can't believe itThis one chokes me up BIG TIME! I think the shock and excitement just settled in here! 

Blushing BelleBlushing Belle 2Belle and Beast walking awayLook at her backpack! I love her backpack! It’s him! 

Belle and Beast goneAs I stood there in shock, they just walked away. I was too frozen to bother them in the middle of their moment! 

So… I’m going to rely on social media to help me find Belle and Beast…because I know how powerful social media can be!  I also know that if I had gotten engaged like this, I’d want these pictures for my own keepsakes. Sorry guys but I think this guy just set the bar really high!

Do you know them? If not, please help spread the word!

Now let’s sing it….”Tale as old as time...”

Who’s Joining the Nerd HQ Army with Me…and Zachary Levi?!!

If you haven’t heard of Nerd HQ, it’s not too late to jump onboard and pretend like you already knew about it! I promise that’s ok! It’s exactly what I did! It involves Zachary Levi…you know, “Chuck”? Or for all of you Disney friends, need I say any more than the words “Flynn Rider“? #swoon

Hold on….here come’s the smolder!

Seriously though….Nerd HQ is a this amazing & FREE event that takes place in San Diego, over the duration of the Comic Con weekend, but is in no way affiliated with Comic Con. It was designed to afford fans the opportunity to interact in a relaxed and fun setting with some of their favorite celebrities, some of which also appear at Comic Con. The 4 day event includes celebrity panels, photo opps and signings, video gaming, technology and some pretty crazy dance parties! (from what I hear) Although the event, itself, is free, Zachary and his company, The Nerd Machine, are actually raising money at the event for Operation Smile, since he’s an ambassador for the organization. (OMG he’s cute, nice, talented AND enjoys helping others?) 
Check out the following clip which features Zachary Levi, himself, as he explains Nerd HQ in guy lingo…short, sweet & to the point! 

Just watch this, Ok? 
Seriously, how down to earth is he? He says it like it is and you can just tell his heart is in this! Why WOULDN’T you want to help him out? 
A few weeks ago, some of my social media girlfriends had the opportunity to meet Zachary, have lunch with him and chat about his Indiegogo campaign and they said he’s exactly how he appears on the video, just a super nice guy who truly wants to produce a great event for the fans. He’s beyond sincere, which is why I joined Nerd HQ and contributed too! Even donating $5 will help! 
I think you need to go do what I did and “Get Your Nerd On!” What are you waiting for? 

Sometimes Instagram is MORE Than Just Pictures

I love Instagram. I love posting pics, I love interacting with others, and I love seeing the variety of pictures that people share. I love seeing pictures of families and fitness and crafts people have made and DISNEY and recipes….etc. Every once in a great while there are pictures that you scroll by and then scroll back to….sometimes several times. You don’t necessarily know the person but then suddenly you almost feel like you want to know them or at least more about them. Today I felt that way about a picture I came across. I have been following this adorable young girl (I’m guessing she’s in her 20s) for just a short while. She is in the fight of her life because she’s battling breast cancer! I don’t know her real name, I don’t know where she lives, I post supportive comments, but the fact that she’s on Instagram, not only sharing pictures of everything she’s going through, but also her thoughts about the cancer is both brave and extremely enlightening for the rest of the world to see! Today I started crying though when I read what she posted with her picture. It was a letter, actually it seemed more like a total PLEA to her cancer. I cried when I read it and then I commented something on her picture and then I read it again.

Here’s the picture she posted: 
Here’s what she wrote: 
“What’s on my mind this morning: my eyelashes. Cancer you’ve taken my hair, my boobs, my periods, you can take my eyebrows, my toenails, whatever, just please don’t take my eyelashes. Pretty please. I’ll buy you some ice cream or a cold pop. But ain’t nobody got time for that, leave the eyelashes. Thank you! Sincerely yours: The girl who’s going to kick your ass!”

I’ve been thinking about it all day. I feel like I want to know her name. I feel like I want to know her. I know I can’t help her much, but even if I can just encourage her and pray for her, I know it’s something. Some people think it’s silly to exert any of your energy on complete strangers. I don’t. Some people don’t quite get the power of social media and how it connects strangers sometimes. I’m guessing that the positive support she gets from her Instagram followers actually helps her get through some tough times, like her rounds of chemo.

Luckily, I am a great investigator and I was able to find her and ask for her permission to share. If you’d like to follow this sweet, adorable chick too, just go and look up @screamqueen13 on Instagram!

On the More Serious Side

I’ve recently come to learn that a friend of a friend’s daughter has been diagnosed with Acute Promyelocytic (M3) Leukemia. Her name is “JoJo” and she’s the same age as my own daughter. When I look at her pictures now, I just see someone who looks like she’d be one of Emi’s friends, an adorable, regular little girl who probably likes doing crafts, having sleepovers & watching Disney shows like “Austin & Ally”. I also see someone who, at the age of 8, is about to take the hardest journey of her life, along with her entire family and all of her friends! Currently, she’s receiving treatment at CHOC in Orange, California.

Yesterday, Jojo pulled this lock of her own hair out (it didn’t seem to be that difficult) and made this mustache with it, jokingly. I know that she was kidding around and actually doing so in good spirits, but it still tugged on my heart strings to see it and read about it.  I do know that her hair isn’t the most important part here, her health is!

It’s hard for me to keep reading about her journey, but I also can’t stop. I can’t help but want to do something to help. Jojo has made “a wish” for her own Macbook, which is the least she should have to keep her occupied with all of the time she’s going to be spending in bed and getting treatments, etc.
Many friends and family are pulling together to raise money, in order to make Jojo’s wish come true, as well as raise money for CHOC hospital’s Oncology unit.
Cynthia Briggeman is a stylist for Stella & Dot who has so generously donated 100% of her commissions from this online trunk show towards Jojo’s wish. There are some adorable bracelets that look like this, within the latest collection, but check out the trunk show and see if YOU like anything!

 
 
I’m also linking her Facebook page, which is open to look at and/or join. 
Stay tuned for more updates on Team Jojo! <3

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