Fall 2014

I'm An Adult & I Love Disneyland

C'mon, admit it, you  love  Disneyland too!

C'mon, admit it, you love Disneyland too!

I'm not weird. You're weird. Who doesn't love Disneyland? 

Ok. Whatever. I guess some people don't like Disneyland and I'm not saying you're abnormal or joyless... but... yeah. 

Just kidding. To each their own. Which is why I take extreme joy in Disneyland. I mean, it's kind of everything I love: chocolate covered pineapple skewers? Check! Giant rice crispies? Yup. Pretzels? Aw yeah, fast food Bavarian style. Semi-spooky, cutesy stuff? In droves. 

I'm an adult and I refuse to stop enjoying Disneyland. 

It's picturesque! I mean, look, that's a place you want to visit, right? Just kidding, it will never be this empty. 

It's picturesque! I mean, look, that's a place you want to visit, right? Just kidding, it will never be this empty. 

Actual words I have said to my husband: "It's ok to like stuff just for the sake of it, Danny." I said this half in jest, but half serious too. Sometimes, I feel like we're all trying so hard to be cool and hip and fun that we let that get in the way of genuinely enjoying stuff. Sometimes, it's ok to like stuff just because you do. You don't need an explanation for it. 

There is a reason we all kinda love pop songs (or at least why they get stuck in our heads so easily). There is a reason that fast food tastes amazing to 85%+ of the population. There is a reason why a majority of people enjoy Disneyland vacations (even if they might not want to repeat them over and over again). It's because some things are just designed for mass enjoyment. And if you enjoy those things, it doesn't mean you're a stupid sell out. It means you're a human with ears that can hear reasonably well, taste buds that enjoy fat and salt in high amounts, and a person that was once a child who watched an Aladdin sing-a-long tape at least twice a day. (Maybe only me on that last one.) 

Even Walt looks happy to be there! 

Even Walt looks happy to be there! 

Disneyland is the fast food of travel. It's easy. Everyone thinks it's cheaper than it is, but it's actually kind of stupid expensive. (Fast food adds up, y'all!) There is a pre-determined menu and not a lot of leeway. You go to Disneyland. You stay in a hotel. You stand in lines. You maybe get frustrated. You eat a churro. You feel like you ate a brick for the rest of the day. 

What's not to love about that? 

Here's the thing: in the wrong environment, Disneyland can totally be a nightmare. If you go into Disneyland saying that you hate lines, that you hope it's not crowded, that crowds make you miserable, etc., etc., you're basically setting the stage to be miserable. I hate to break this to you, but here's the big secret: it's freaking Disneyland. There are always going to be lines. There are always going to be other people. It's freaking Disneyland. You're not walking to the park. 

If you approach Disneyland with the idea that you're there to have fun -- and dammit, you're gonna have fun no matter what happens -- then undoubtedly you will have fun. If you, like me, walk into the parks just overjoyed to be there, then you're going to enjoy yourself. Half the fun is just being at Disneyland. Everything is themed and organized and clean and perfect (this is my dream world, clearly); how can you not at least enjoy it? 

lol @ all of these pictures featuring empty walkways. 

lol @ all of these pictures featuring empty walkways. 

Lots of people don't like Disneyland. Ok, that's fine, you do you, yo! I'm sure you enjoy lots of other stuff that people might find embarrassing, like scream-cry-singing to Taylor Swift in your car or putting sriracha sauce on everything even though it tastes like nothing (I went there, bring it). Do I judge you for that? Yes, a little, but I'll stop if you'll stop judging me for being an adult who loves Disneyland.

It's ok to be an adult who loves Disneyland. It is. It's ok. It's ok to cry to Taylor Swift songs in your car, eat too much hot sauce, make stale jokes about bacon, eat fast food, buy a mass-produced sweater, and go to Disneyland. It's okay to enjoy things just because you enjoy them. 

I Turned 26

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I've somehow managed to have the same face since I was 6. 

When I was 18, someone who hadn't seen me since I was about 6 or 7 recognized me instantly. I've just one of those people whose face really didn't change as I got older. It's retained its round, babyish quality and it's not going away anytime soon. Everyone thinks it's hysterical, but I recently got asked if I was old enough to work where I work and I pretty much will be carded for the rest of my life.

My babyface has become even more clear thanks to my mom, who, for my birthday, gave me a box full of baby pictures. They are all gems. 

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Getting older is fun, but it's also scary. When I was younger, I couldn't wait to be older. I always wrote stories about girls who were 22. I never imagined being 25 or 26, but I couldn't wait to be 22, to be mature, to be fulfilled and happy. Maybe I believed in magic for too long because I really believed I would magically fall into a career immediately after graduating college. I also apparently thought people dropped off the face of the planet after 25, which I hope isn't true. 

As I get older, I become more and more aware of the things I've taken for granted, of the responsibilities that I now have to take on, and of all the things I didn't think I wanted (but totally do). I also think of all the assumptions I made about people. I remember thinking about my mom losing her brother when she was 19 and thinking, "well, it was ok because she was grown up." Dear Lord, young Michelle, could you have been more clueless? 

I recently watched the movie Neighbors, which is just as silly as you imagine, but it also made me think about getting older. There is still a part of me that wants to be cool: I miss going to parties, I miss staying up all night and staying out late. I miss eating Taco Bell at 2am. I miss the dirty party houses and endless Netflix parties. I miss them, but I also find myself exhausted at the mere prospect of staying awake all night. I'm so tired; I have to work in the morning; and really, I just want to watch Key & Peele. Am I officially an old? No longer a youth? Am I over the hill? 

I'm not going to worry about it, really. While I miss all the fun of my college years, I don't miss the drama that came with them or the fluctuating persona. I don't miss having to act certain ways around certain people. At 26, I'm ready to just be myself -- and be old. 

Big Decisions (and Other Regrets)

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I've been writing for a long time.

For as long as I can remember, really, I've been writing. I always felt like I was born to be a writer. But just because I knew exactly what I wanted to do didn't mean it was easy.

I took a lot of missteps. I wandered down a lot of paths.

It's only been recently that I've found where I really want to be. Finding this new place -- where I'm happy and content -- means that I have to look at the things I was doing before and decide if that's how I want to spend my time.

This is a long drawn out goodbye to my blogs of the past. 

It's difficult to look forward and think, no more narcissistic outfit posts. No self-involved beauty posts. (OK, maybe sometimes -- and I'll never stop writing about my favorite beauty products.) That's been the content I've produced non-stop since 2008 and it's hard to imagine a world where I don't write at least two or three reviews a week! 

I'm excited to move on though. I'm excited to have a more solid grounding in my career. 

The Uses of Sorrow
(In my sleep I dreamed this poem)
Someone I loved once gave me
a box full of darkness.

It took me years to understand
that this, too, was a gift.
-Mary Oliver

That doesn't mean I'm not sad -- in a lot of ways, I am. I thought I'd blog forever. I thought I'd write about the same things and always be happy about it. But that just isn't the way it happened. Life is more complicated than that and we're always finding new things about ourselves we want to explore, new things to write about. I want to have the freedom to do just that -- with a look that's a little more professional.

More than anything, I knew it was time for me to grow up. 

Saying goodbye to a blog that I've essentially kept since 2008 (longer than I've kept anything in my life) means saying goodbye to a part of my identity that I truly outgrew a long time ago -- but held onto because I loved it so much. My blog is representative of who I was at one of the happiest and saddest times of my life. Moving on is moving on -- letting go of the sadness, of the wanting to go back in time, of dwelling on the past. 

I'm excited for this new chapter. Stay tuned for more.