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transformation.

As usual, it’s been a while since I’ve last updated, so this is going to be a LONG one! I hope you’re ready.

I’m trying to figure out how to reconcile The Ronni Davis Author Brand with the Anywhere Is Ronni (who’s been on the web since 2000). And this is the website that’s in the Edelweiss link for my book, which is really strange… I have no idea how they even found it. But one thing I always try to live by is what you see is what you get, so if you came here from there, welcome to my personal blogspace! This is me!

(Also, if you came from there, I recommend you go look at my author page. It’s way more professional, and that’s where you’ll find out about all my books and news and stuff!) 🙂

As usual, most of my life updates happen on twitter or instagram, so if you’re not following me on either or both of those, why the heck not?

Since I always wait so long in between updates, and my last update was more than an entire season ago, I will do a bulleted rundown of the biggest things that went down.

April
• Met Kacen Callender, who acquired my book when they were still at Little Brown. Now they’re an amazing author in their own right! And a dear friend 💖

• Kindling Words West writing retreat, which was amazing. Met new friends, wrote lots of words, got some nature, and ate delicious, healthy food. Such a great experience!

• I came off the crutches and started sleeping without the leg brace
• Got let go from Sherwin-Williams
• Found out that our lease wasn’t being renewed on May Street (thanks gentrification), so had to go apartment hunting (Adam had been there nearly 15 years, I’d been there 11)
• Packed, sorted, donated, and trashed stuff on stuff on stuff
• Signed lease on gorgeous new apartment!

• Was cleared to remove leg brace for good!

May
• Moved to new place, which is 30 minutes north of where we used to be, 3x the size of the old place, and in the most ethnically diverse neighborhood I’ve ever lived in
• Started yoga again
• Attended #MMC30, where I got to meet Mouseketeers I’d looked up to since the 90s, reunite with old Mouseketeer friends, and meet/reunite with friends I’ve known for ages from the MMC fandom! It was such a good weekend, and I got so many amazing hugs. There was food, and dancing, and tears, entertainment and so much love. After, I spent a couple of short days at Disney World with my friend Nikki (the redhead), and got to meet my instagram pal Delaney (the Snow White miniature)!

• Attended MegaCon for a few hours and got to meet David Tennant!
• Went down to physical therapy 2x a week
• Started seeing my chiropractor again
• Woke up every day in my new apartment like “I can’t believe I get to live here!”

June
• Continued to get settled in the new place
• Filmed a video tour of the new place

• LOVING my office

• Went down to 1x a week for physical therapy
• Started seriously writing again
• Got the news that the bone was completely healed and that I could officially return to exercising (lol). Therapist took that as the cue to really start pushing me to regain my strength and flexibility
• Saw Sarah Dessen again!! And signed an ARC of my book for her! (And I was shaking the whole time. Sarah Dessen is my main inspiration and idol, and to sign one of MY books for her was incredible)

• Changed my hair!

Trying something new hair wise
• Said goodbye to our dear Crookshanks. He was 18 years old. So very missed, this guy.


The reason I picked the title TRANSFORMATION for this blog post is that 2019 is the year I feel like there is something seriously at work in my life. Between breaking my knee, and losing my job, and having to move, I’ve been kind of knocked for a loop. Definitely kicked far out of my comfort zone.

When I tell people I broke my patella, they’re gobsmacked. Even my personal doctor was gobsmacked. Apparently this injury is quite rare. I won’t even say how it happened… people are always unimpressed with the truth and tell me I should make up something cooler. Aidan wants me to tell a story involving pirates. Sometimes he will tell the story for me. With pirates.

Life is definitely weird. So is it any surprise that when I wind down at night, my YouTube go-tos (besides my favorite Simmers) are videos that are some sort of transformation? Car detailing, disaster house cleaning sessions, restorations, makeovers? The worse off the before, the more satisfying it is to see things made shiny and new again. Maybe I feel a kindred spirit with all that change, or maybe it’s just satisfying, a constant in my life, which, if the acid churning in my stomach is anything to go by, is needed because somehow I don’t think 2019 is finished with me.

But I’m putting this into the Universe:
• Please let me nail these proposals so I get at least one new book deal in the year of our Lord 2019
• I get a permanent or long-term work-from-home part time job (or full time, whatever) in the fall season of 2019. I just work better when I’m in my own office, surrounded by my inspirational things and my toys and my books, listening to my music, and wearing my comfy leggings and tee-shirts

In the meantime, I know I am changing. New hair, as you saw earlier in the post. New place. New me. Suddenly, I am a clean freak, when before, I was just too tired and overwhelmed to care. I am still pants at coming up with yummy things for dinner, but one night I made some really tasty chicken parmesan and I feel like that’s the first time I’ve ever cooked chicken parmesan… 🤔 But the key was to sear the chicken first, then put on all the stuff, and bake it. It was delicious, maybe I’ll make a sandwich of that for dinner today…

Anyway. WTF? Yesterday I baked brownies and scrubbed all the small appliances. I don’t understand me anymore.


Just over 120 days until my book comes out. Still 6 months away so I’m not stressing too much, but it really is time to start thinking about marketing efforts. I know my publicist has some things in the works, and I think the timeline for things to jump off kicks into gear sometime in August. As it is, the ARC has made its way into readers hands, and I’ve gotten some lovely messages and emails, beautiful bookstagram posts, and someone (who you should follow because her posts are so cute) made the most ADORABLE fan art of Ashton and Devon:

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by fanbookart (@fanbookart) on

The first time I got a reader message, I was floored. I cried. Because now all the hard work, the stress, the tears, the giving up and starting again was all worth it. It had been worth it already… but getting a letter from a reader who is thanking me for writing that book… I can’t even describe what that feels like. It’s a whole other level of gratitude. The readers are who this is all about. The main thing I’m hearing is “This is the book I didn’t know I needed.” And it’s amazing to see that. It’s kind of incredible, learning that my words have touched readers like that…also makes me want to work harder on my next book. Which is a whole other can of stress!!

But, my book is up for preorders, and you can get it at any of these retailers:

amazon • b&n • indiebound • chapters

Cool right?? Also, my book was one of BEA’s YA Fall Buzz Books! Which is awesome because I was mixed in with some great company!


And one last thing! I graduated from physical therapy on July 1! I’m so proud I did it. Even when it got hard, I kept going.  Now I just need to keep up with the exercises. 😬

After falling and breaking my knee in February 2019, and having an emergency surgery to fix all the things... I went from crutches to brace only to walking on my own... all with the help of Mandie and the team at PhysioPartners. Months of rehab and I can
Life keeps throwing things at me and somehow I’m pushing through. I’m sure I’ll look back on 2019 like WOW WHAT A YEAR and with fondness… but I’m not gonna lie. It’s been a bit of a challenge sometimes.

But the second half is starting, and my book comes out in the fall and that’s exciting!! Also my birthday and Christmas and omg it’s only July I need to slow the eff down.

Anyway, I guess that’s all for now. I know there are a lot more feels in there, but I’m too tired to pull them out now. The Benadryl is kicking in, but first it’s asking for a snack. And this post is already super long. I don’t even feel like proofreading it.

I’ll leave you with a picture of me looking cute at Disney World in May. Till next time!

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a look back at 2016.

Was 2016 a good year for you?

The world had a rough 2016. A lot of sadness, loss, and pain. I grieve with the rest of us over the hard things that have happened, and hope for healing and love. Sadly, I have a lot of fear for what’s to come, but since this post is about looking back, I won’t go into it here.

For me personally, I cannot complain. I worked a lot, but I never worried about money. I was able to have once-in-a-lifetime experiences (although I’d like to, and plan to, make some of them happen a lot more!), and I got to travel to New York City, Disney World, and Scotland, make new friends, and improve my writing.

What did you do in 2016 that you’d never done before?
– flew first class
– attended a red (black) carpet event
– attended a movie premiere
– attended a celebrity-studded after party
– attended the New York City Teen Author Festival
– traveled out of the United States
– visited a castle (other than Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty, although I did visit Cinderella Castle this year as well)
– slept in a mansion
– went on a writing retreat
– got hypnotized
– attended a con party
– spoke on a con panel
– attended chambanacon
– got a mammogram
– ROLL PODS!

Did anyone close to you give birth?
Well, I don’t know her that well yet, but the new wife of my cousin gave birth to the most adorable baby boy.

Did anyone close to you die?
No. Thank God.

What countries did you visit?
– Ireland (for a layover, 2x)
– Scotland

What date(s) from 2016 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
March 14: I got to talk to Theo James I got to talk to Theo James I got to talk to Theo James!!!!
Ronni asks Theo a question (AOL Build)

March 14: I met Jordan Rodrigues!!! I loved him on Dance Academy and on The Fosters, and he was sooo amazingly nice and great to talk to. He’s a really cool guy and I wish him the very best.
Me and Jordan Rodrigues

March 14: I attended a movie premiere and all sorts of cool stuff came with that experience
The Divergent Series: Allegiant World Premiere, Red Carpet, and After Party

May 13: I finally made it out of the United States
Off to the UK on Aer Lingus

August 15: Got to fly first class for the first time and loved it, of course
#firstclassflight

October 8: The day I met the lovely Jennifer Niven and we discovered we were friend soulmates forever. My world shines brighter because she’s in it.

What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Finally making it to another country! And I did it all by myself, only had one panic attack and got lost once, but I survived and loved it. So excited to do it again someday soon.

What was your biggest failure?
Keeping the apartment clean. EPIC FAIL on that one.

Did you suffer illness or injury?
– got a couple of colds, but they didn’t last very long
– depression and anxiety got a bit out of control, so I started therapy and being much better about taking my meds
– fibroids grew a lot, necessitating the need to schedule a surgery (for early 2017)
– anemia (due to the fibroids)

Where did most of your money go?
travel, clothes, purses, toys, books, and gifts

What song(s) will always remind you of 2016?
Sorry – Beyonce
Formation – Beyonce
The Greatest – Sia
Revolution – Diplo
Gasoline – Halsey

What do you wish you’d done more of?
– ***writing***
– yoga
– moving my body in general
– learning
– traveling
– journaling
– connecting with my friends

What do you wish you’d done less of?
Spending time on social media. It’s a great way to network and make friends, but it also takes away from my writing and productivity. I need to find a better balance.

What was your greatest musical discovery?
– Halsey
– Låpsley

What did you want and get?
– to talk to Theo James :)
– a trip to New York City
– a trip to Disney World
– a trip to Scotland
– a new Prada purse
– a Kate Spade bag (I got 2 actually)
– LuLaRoe leggings
– a new computer
– new writer friends, near and far

ChiYA December 2016
(I love the striped sweater OK?)

What did you want and not get?
– MORE AIDAN TIME (there is never enough)
– to talk MORE to Theo James
– to see the Statue of Liberty, the Cloisters, and the High Line in NYC
– a major book deal
– a visit to Morton Arboretum

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 42. (Seriously, how am I 42?) I spent the day working, then I went out to dinner at Sakura with Adam and Aidan.
If the rest of 42 (oh god how am I 42) is like today, I'm gonna have a great year!! #yay #happy 😊🌈⭐

What kept you sane?
– writing
– therapy
– friends

Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Theo James

What political issue stirred you the most?
– Black Lives Matter
– the election
– the Dakota Access Pipeline

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2016.
Change comes slowly and painfully, and resistance is real and strong, especially when some people think they’ll benefit more from the status quo no matter how much it’s actually hurting everyone.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2016?
– Yoga clothes: leggings, tanks. The brighter the better.
– Skinny jeans and boots.
– Denim jackets, yes please.

What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Signing with an amazing literary agent

Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. happier or sadder? happier
ii. thinner or fatter? the same
iii. richer or poorer? richer

In 2017, I’m looking forward to:
– being recovered from my surgery
– the Writing Cross-Culturally Workshop
– domestic travel (mostly to visit friends)
– international travel
– another Disney trip
– writing a new book
– more yoga, and getting back to barre
– new music and books
– seeing Aladdin on stage
– seeing The Nutcracker for Christmas
Beauty and the Beast in theatres
Everything, Everything in theatres

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

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my experience at the aol build and allegiant world premiere.

Copyright 2016 Ronica Davis - Theologians.net

I blog for The THEOlogians, a news site for Theo James, who is my absolute favorite actor. Last week, I got to fly to New York City to attend the World Premiere of The Divergent Series: Allegiant, attend the Red (actually BLACK) Carpet, and was a guest at the after party. Theo is a lead in the movie, and he plays the character Four. In addition, I managed to get a ticket to the AOL Build session featuring Theo James and Shailene Woodley. Below is an account of both experiences!

AOL BUILD

I woke up Monday morning, my stomach in knots. I didn’t know what to expect, and I’d never navigated the MTA on my own before, so my main concern was making sure I got there on time without getting lost! Turns out I didn’t even need to worry about that. The trains weren’t running right, so I had to call an Uber. Then traffic was a hot mess. I was very nervous, but I got there in plenty of time.

Check-in was easy. I just showed my confirmation and they let me up to the fourth floor. I was disappointed to see that all the seats in the front and second row were taken. I’d managed to find a seat in the third row, next to one of the employees, and I was OK with that. Much better than the back! I’m short, so the closer to the front the better!

I hadn’t known I could take photos, so I didn’t bring my really good camera. As a result, the image quality on my photos isn’t up to my usual standards. I also hadn’t known I could take video. Turns out that my seat was right next to where they walk in, which was a bonus I did not expect. You may have seen the video on Instagram.

A video posted by Ronni (@lilrongal) on

Before they walked in, a guy came in to warm up the crowd. I was enthusiastic and they took note of that, and it came in handy later. The interview was fun and enjoyable. I forgot there were cameras on as Theo and Shailene charmed the interviewer and the audience. When it came time for questions, the AOL employee next to me made sure to flag down the question guy for me. He asked me what my question was, then he had to get approval. Turns out the publicists didn’t like my first question. Luckily, I had another one prepared, and they liked the second question, which is the one I asked on camera.

Ronni asks Theo a question (AOL Build)

It was awesome. Very very awesome. To have Theo look right at me, and then talk directly to me was a dream come true. Wow. I’ve only been wanting to meet him for years…YEARS…and even though this wasn’t exactly a meeting, for that moment, he knew I was alive and acknowledged me. Not only that, but I am genuinely curious as to what he will come up as a writer and a producer, and I think (hope) he picked up on that. He’s so smart and funny, I think anything he does will be brilliant.

I floated all the way back to my hotel!

ALLEGIANT PREMIERE

I'm at the Black Carpet! OMG!
I’m at the Black Carpet! OMG!

Stomach still in knots, I made my way over to the AMC Lincoln Square at about 4:30 p.m. Official check in was 5:45 p.m., but I wanted to get in line early. It was drizzling outside, and one of the guards tried to tell me to go back home because the lobby was too crowded—there was also a My Big Fat Greek Wedding event going on. (HA, fat chance) I found a little hidden niche with some other bloggers and hung with them as we were escorted to a line until time to check in. Talking to them helped calm my nerves and my stomach.

Soon, a representative called us over and handed out envelopes with the movie ticket and after party ticket, as well as a shiny blue wristband that allowed us entrance to the tent and fan pen. My packet was the last in the bunch, so I was nervous until she finally pulled it out! We were allowed to walk on the black carpet and take photos with the posters, but I elected to secure my spot in the front row of the fan pen instead.

 Hanging in the Fan Pen with Stacy!
Hanging in the Fan Pen with Stacy!

Then we waited. People slowly trickled in, press members, VIPs, the Damn Daniel guys, random celebrities I didn’t recognize, or people I recognized but couldn’t place, and the like. I could see camera flashes outside the door, some people thought it was lightning, but I knew that meant someone cool was coming in. The first actor in was Jeff Daniels, who did an interview and took photos. Then Keiynan Lonsdale came in with his plus one, Jordan Rodrigues, who he’d worked with on Dance Academy. (I had a full on fangirl meltdown at this point, because I am a huge fan of Dance Academy and Jordan Rodrigues played my favorite character!) I gave him a flirty wave as he stood on the carpet, and he gave me a small smile and waved back. Night made and I hadn’t even seen Theo yet.

Bill Skarsgård (Matthew) came in and I snapped photos of him. He came right to the fan pen and took a selfie with me. He was so funny. He’s so tall and his eyes are gorgeous. Nadia Hilker (Nita) spent a lot of time with fans, signing autographs and taking selfies and seemed like she was having a blast.

Nadia Hilker with Ronni from @TheologiansNet at the #AllegiantPremiere

A photo posted by TheTHEOlogians-Theo James News (@theologiansnet) on

Bill Skarsgård and Ronni from @TheologiansNet #AllegiantPremiere

A photo posted by TheTHEOlogians-Theo James News (@theologiansnet) on

The next several minutes were a blur. The carpet got very crowded. There were loads of children all dressed up. There were lots of press and publicists and family members and friends, and it got loud. I saw Naomi Watts (Evelyn) posing for press, and Divergent author Veronica Roth stopped by the fan pen for a split second. I was next to Stacy from Page Turners (who I’d already known because of all the book events we both attend, and also I won a contest from her years ago), and she and Veronica are friends. Veronica made a regretful face at Stacy before being pulled away by industry folks. I managed to get a selfie with Ansel Elgort (Caleb), and I totally photobombed a photo with Miles Teller (Peter).

Miles Teller & Folks!
Miles Teller & Folks!

Shailene Woodley (Tris) stopped right in front of me but she was distracted by the industry people. I said “Hey girl heyyyy” and she turned around and said “Hey—”. A look of recognition came over her face (she totally remembered me from the AOL Build!) and she said “Hey, how are you?” Then she was whisked away.

#ShaileneWoodley at the #AllegiantPremiere

A photo posted by TheTHEOlogians-Theo James News (@theologiansnet) on

@AnselElgort with Ronni from @TheologiansNet at the #AllegiantPremiere

A photo posted by TheTHEOlogians-Theo James News (@theologiansnet) on

Theo James (Four/Tobias) didn’t even get to me on the carpet before he was snatched away. I was a bit disappointed—I really wanted to see if he’d remember me from that morning. Once he went past, that was pretty much it. Zoe Kravitz (Christina) was busy chatting with people on the carpet, but I got a couple of nice pictures of her.

#TheoJames at the #AllegiantPremiere last night (Photo by @lilrongal from @theologiansnet)

A photo posted by TheTHEOlogians-Theo James News (@theologiansnet) on


I TOOK THAT PICTURE!!!

Click here to see more photos from the Allegiant Black Carpet!

Soon after the frenzy of the carpet, they led us out to the theater. There were two theaters—the cast theater and the fan theater. I was in the fan theater. We had assigned seats. They gave us free popcorn and beverages, and the movie score played in the background while we waited for the movie to start.

Movie Time!
Movie Time!

I enjoyed the movie! I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I really hoped it’d be better than Insurgent. I thought it was, especially the second half. I was on the edge of my seat, and I was surprised when it was over. I like when I get lost in something like that.

After the movie, fans lined up outside and inside, waiting for the celebrities in the lobby who were heading to their fancy cars. I ran outside and grabbed an Uber to the after party. Traffic was bad, but I got there at a decent time.

They didn’t let us keep the after party ticket. It was so cool, so I’m glad I got a photo. There were different ones. I got Caleb.

After party ticket

The place was huge! There were flashing blue lights, “Allegiant” lights on the walls. Loud music, people milling around, a really amazing coat check (seriously, the coat check was impressive), and the size of the main room went back forever. There were couches in the main room reserved for some of the industry VIPs. There was also a separate VIP section that we could peek in, and a private VIP section where most of the celebrities went as the night went on. I really wanted to go in there. REALLY did. Just to sit down and chill with everyone. But I was glad to be at the party at all.

Theo was already in the VIP section when I got there, so I knew there would be no chance of talking to him. The “Damn Daniel” guys didn’t go into the VIP section at all, they hung out together, enjoying all the yummy food and talking to fans. Pasta, seafood, a cold bar, and yummy desserts were all over. Lots of people walked around with trays of tasty small bites. I couldn’t understand why the people serving the champagne kept swerving away from me—do I really look *that* young? I had to go to the bar to get a drink.

But before I did that, I got to speak with Jordan Rodrigues. He recognized me from the fan pen and maybe even from my tweet—he’d “liked” it earlier that night when I tweeted about seeing him there.

He liked my tweet!

He and I talked about acting and career choices, among other things. He was easy to talk to and very nice. We had a great chat! He told me that it was really nice talking with me, which made me happy. I also got to talk to Keiynan Lonsdale, who is *beautiful* in person. Onscreen doesn’t do him justice. He too was very nice, and he is super tall. Jordan is just right.

Jordan Rodrigues!!
Jordan Rodrigues!!

Ray Stevenson (Marcus) stayed out in the regular part of the party, but he didn’t talk to anyone except people he knew. I got to chat with Veronica Roth about living in Chicago and how crazy it is that we live in the same city but I only get to see her at events like this. (I met her two years ago at the All It Takes Divergent premiere in Los Angeles, but she didn’t remember. Not that I expected her to.) Theo came out once (probably to use the bathroom), and security was all over him. In fact, security saw me spot Theo and whisked him (he seemed confused) in the other direction. How rude.

Erin and Me

There was a photo booth, so Erin of Once Upon a Twilight and I got in and posed all cute and stuff. Then we mainly people watched, munched on good food, chatted with Lauren and Michael from The Young Folks, and had a really good time. We danced, too. It was a party, after all! So why not dance?

Too soon, the night was over. I sat and watched some of the celebs leave, only because I am nosy like that. Ansel left with a big group, holding hands with his gorgeous girlfriend. I yelled “Happy Birthday” to him and he gave me a smile. Theo left with a big group of people, surrounded by security. It was like a kindergarten class: “Now everyone hold hands so no one gets separated.” I headed back to my hotel then, ready to sleep for a million years, but the adrenaline wouldn’t let me.

Things I Learned:

1. Actors in general are very tall. Most of them towered over me. (Or maybe I’m just very short.)
2. The “red carpet” is not just a time to pose for pictures and look pretty. Those actors are working hard. Taking photos, talking to press, giving fans a thrill, trying to keep up with all the frenzy. I can see how it could be overwhelming.
3. Lots of random people walk the carpet. Producer’s children, plus ones, family members, random celebrities that have nothing to do with the movie just to name a few.
4. Press is everywhere.
5. The carpet is LOUD because there are so many people.
6. No matter where you are, there is always a “better” place you want to be. (Or maybe this is just me.) I was in the fan pen, but I wanted to be important enough to be on the carpet. I was at the party, but I wanted to be important enough to hit the VIP area. Then the super VIP area. And yet, there were people standing out in the freezing rain, wishing they were were I was. Interesting how that works, no? With that said…

I am everlastingly grateful to Lionsgate for giving me the opportunity to experience this taste of Hollywood glamour. It was an intense, amazing, crazy, adrenaline-pumping time and I loved every minute of it. I hope to get to do it again next year!

Yay!
Yay!

*shameless plug*
Please visit The THEOlogians, and follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. :)

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so far, so good.

We’re just a hair over two weeks into 2015, and I must say that I have no complaints. We had some super cold days, but seeing as I work from home, I haven’t had to deal with them much. And the day I needed to go out? The temps jumped up to 30F.

Love my new Frozen hat!! ???????? #frozen #elsa #disneyside #selfie

So far, January for me has been reading reading reading. Lots of reading. Some for pleasure, and some for work, work, and more work, for which I am grateful.

I’m doing work for Pivot Point Academy, which is a beauty school. My project is very interesting. I am proofreading Dutch books, and learning a lot of Dutch cosmetology terms in the meantime. For example:

kleur = color
haar = hair
dik = thick

I like this work, I like the team, and I really hope I get the chance to continue working for them once this project is over.

I am also working for Berlitz again, a huge and fast project that is kind of high maintenance. It’s all right, though, because it’s money, and again, I really like the person I’m working with.

Those are my paying jobs for now. I’m also still doing the work-trade thing for Moksha, and I’m not sure if I mentioned that I’m doing work-trade for The Dailey Method as well. I work in their kids room. It’s very early every other Sunday, so I wake up grumbling about it. But then, when I’m in there, and a little kiddo comes in, I melt. Especially when they start off shy, but then halfway through the hour, they are climbing on me. Last Sunday, one of the little ones, Noah, came. Now, my first day doing this, in October of last year, Noah showed up, took one look at me and freaked out so much his mom had to leave! It kind of hurt my feelings! I mean, it may not have been me. Children are so unpredictable, any factor could have played into the fit he threw. But this time, he waved and smiled shyly at me, and then halfway through, he was on my lap. And he pretended to make me breakfast!

So, it’s rewarding as well as exhausting to work in the kid’s room. But it’s worth it because the kids are typically very sweet and friendly, and I get so many credits to use at The Dailey Method. I love working out there.

I haven’t done any working out this year yet. How horrible is that? Either it’s been too cold for my tastes, or I’ve been buried under deadlines, and let’s face it, maybe I’ve been too lazy. But my body is craving movement, so once I clear some of these deadlines (!), it’s back to Moksha (for real!) and The Dailey Method for me.

I’ve become obsessed with the song Elastic Heart by Sia. I heard about it while browsing tumblr, apparently there is controversy around the whole little girl dancing with a grown man or whatever. People are so dumb sometimes. The video is beautiful and sad and the song is amazing.

Also, the little girl? Maddie Ziegler from Dance Moms. Her dancing is mind-blowing. The girl is so good. So, so, so good. Her dancing tells stories. Watch the video, and see for yourself.

I watched a few episodes of Dance Moms a few years ago and actually enjoyed it, once I get past the drama. Abby picks awesome music, and I always enjoy watching dance. Maybe I should start watching it again.

I watched Maleficent and REALLY enjoyed it. It was simple, and predictable, but sometimes I like that in a story. I don’t always need for a story to be complicated with 90,000 plot twists for it to be enjoyable.

I finished season 2 of Gilmore Girls over the weekend. I’ll start the third season when work settles down.

I’ve been reading recap blogs and would LOVE to do my own. I have one in reserve, but I’m not sure if I want to go in that direction. There are a billion VC Andrews recap blogs so not that. And all these recaps seem to require a level of critical thinking that I’m not sure I’m capable of or interest in doing a whole lot of. And of course, I am notorious for never following through on such things, so there’s that.

Anyway, this entry was pretty pointless, yeah? I just felt like checking in. Till next time….

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all hail mickey mouse.

Disney World 2014 Collage

Guess who recently returned from a really cool Disney vacation? If you guessed ME, you’d be right! :) I didn’t post much about it here because well, it was such a random, sorta last minute thing. See, my brother-in-law Eli and his wife Melissa both work for the Disney company in California, so they get free tickets (four each!) and discounted accommodations for the parks. They also run marathons and crazy things like that. They came to Orlando to do the Wine & Dine Half Marathon and then to vacation a bit. Adam’s family was joining them, along with Melissa’s mom. That left one space for me! I just had to pay for my flight and contribute a bit to the room cost, which was VERY VERY reasonable, what they asked. And of course, buy my own food, etc.

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the gang!

The trip was from November 7-15. I had to be with Eli to get let into the park, and then I could do whatever I want the rest of the day. Sometimes I stuck with Adam’s family (his mom, dad, sister, and niece), sometimes I hung with Melissa, Eli, and Vicky. Sometimes we were ALL together. A lot of times I went off by myself. I took a lot of selfies! Ha.

Back at Epcot!! ???? #Epcot #disneyworld #selfie #disney

The Magic started right away, when I went to check in and the guy at the desk gave me a pile of stickers and coloring books and crayons and buttons! And it just kept continuing, with people doing nice things, my friend Joe getting us into Garden Grill for dinner even though it had been booked for months, big hugs from Mickey Mouse and the gang, and so much more.

Here are the things I’ve learned the times that I was on my own at Disney World:

1. It’s an interesting experience. I loved the freedom of doing what I wanted when I wanted. It was much faster and easier to weasel my way through crowds when I was by myself. I enjoyed just answering to myself. If I wanted to do something, I did it. I didn’t have to get approval or wait for people, I could just go for it. And single rider lines for rides are the best. I pretty much walked right on to Test Track more than once. And there are some really warm and open people at Disney World. I talked to one wonderful woman about ten minutes and by the end of the conversation, she was embracing me. Little girls seemed to love me–so many would just stop and smile and/or say “hi” to me or just start talking to me. Little boys, too! And I got a free churro because I was at the Christmas Party by myself. If I wanted to sit and people watch, it was OK for me to do that. I didn’t feel like I was putting people out when my tiny bladder made its needs known loudly and often. If people in the group were doing something I wasn’t all that into, I liked being able to say “I’m going to do [some other thing] and I’ll catch up with you later.” I loved that.

2. Eating was so cheap when it was just me! Before I left for Disney, I purchased $150 in Disney gift cards from Target (using my RedCard so I’d save 5%), and I didn’t use all of it. Granted, one meal was an expensive one and I paid for that NOT using the gift card, but the rest? Well, I came home with $20 left, and I’d even bought a souvenir with some of the gift card money. This was done with some extra help though: I had granola bars and Pop-Tarts in my room. I bought one bottle of water and kept refilling it, and I also bought a refillable drink mug (with a gift card!) to use when I was at the resort. Seeing as I was there so many nights, it was a good investment, especially on my resort day. I also have a small appetite, so many times, the kid’s meal was adequate for me. I also forgot about my gift cards and got a couple of Food & Wine entries with cash. So, truthfully, I probably spent about $180 to feed myself at Disney World for nine days, including a refillable drink mug, a fancy sit down meal, and novelty snacks. I’d say $20 a day isn’t bad.

3. During a long trip like this, a day in the middle to do NOTHING is a fantastic idea. I never knew the value of it until last week. I realized that I am absolutely capable of melting down like the toddlers at the end of the night (or morning or whenever) who have had ENOUGH. I was like that Monday night after the Christmas party. I was just DONE. Then I dropped my brand new phone INTO the Murphy bed that I was sleeping on (which was very comfortable by the way). I didn’t sleep well. By Tuesday morning, I was a mess. I got on my computer while waiting for maintenance to come and help me get my phone out. I took my medication, and tried to calm down. It worked. Maintenance came and my phone was rescued and unharmed. The meds kicked in. I pulled on my bathing suit and decided to stick around the resort all day. I hung out at the pool and had a drink, and talked to my mom and Aidan on the phone. Then I took a nice, hot bath before heading to the food court for something yummy to eat. (Probably corn dogs, seeing as I can’t seem to get enough of the things lately.) It was a nice, relaxing, much-needed day of downtime and self care. I highly recommend a resort/pool day for all long Disney trips.

Poolside drinksies!!!! #vacation #goodlife #disney #disneyworld #selfie ??????????

I got to spend time at Disney with a little kid, which doesn’t happen often. I mean, there are kids THERE, but they’re not with me, so yeah. Hanging out with Lola was great. To hear that little voice say “I want to sit with RONNI” was soooo fun!

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how cute is this?

And I had to admire how they kept her fed and happy with PB&J, fruit, cheese sticks, popcorn, etc. They didn’t have to spend a lot of money on her nor worry about feeding her since she can be a picky little eater. And because she was in her stroller, they could just feed her just about anywhere. Chris and I didn’t do that with Aidan! Not that he’d have eaten PB&J anyway….

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I got to do some new things this trip. I finally got to see Fantasmic! :) I’d been hearing about this fireworks show for years and years but it always seemed like a pain in a butt to get to. You had to line up a million years before to get a good seat or even a seat at all, blah blah blah. But FastPass+ made it possible for Cassidy and me to get front row center seats (now, we’d have normally never wasted a Fast Pass on a show but that’s about all they had available by the time we made it to Hollywood Studios that evening), so there it was. And I LOVED it! It lived up to the hype for sure!

I sat at the Pinocchio restaurant and waved to people riding it’s a small world. That was fun.

The Seven Dwarfs Mine Train is so much fun! Such a cute coaster!

I saw Finding Nemo: The Musical. I liked it, but The Festival of the Lion King wins. I missed the Jammin’ Jungle Parade. So sad it’s gone. I heard it is coming back after all the work is done in Animal Kingdom. I hope so.

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Animal Kingdom in the dark! That was certainly new! It either closes so early or it stays dark so late that I’ve never see it at night. It’s just as pretty.

And there was Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, where I got to meet these guys:

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And see Main Street look like this (complete with fake snow):

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The pictures do not do the castle justice, how pretty it is. It’s incredible, and now they’ve incorporated Elsa and Anna and Olaf (from Frozen) into the castle lighting in a very clever way. I approve! :) Here’s a video of the very ending, complete with a “wooo” from me.

And oh oh oh, I got to see the Osborne Spectacle of Dancing Lights! It was sooooo cool. Definitely will put you in the holiday spirit, as long as you can handle the crowds!! Here’s a snippet!

Honestly, I cannot even begin to put all the stuff I got to see and do. It was just a nice, long, awesome vacation. If you’d like to see more photos, click here! There’s lots to see! :)

And I leave you with a photo of Mickey and me. Because yes.

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Till next time! :)

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