Monday, March 28, 2016

Ride The Movies

I'm not sure if Universal Studios still uses "ride the movies" as their slogan, but it will forever be their slogan to me. I love that they create interactive rides based on awesome movies. I also like that they have both movies from my childhood and more current movies too.




I have been going to Universal since I was little, so I've seen a lot of the rides be replaced. I think the one I miss the most is the Back to the Future ride. They also used to have a Jaws ride, which I hated. I didn't think it was that fun, but it was kind of funny to watch people get scared when the shark jumped out of the water right by their side of the boat. While I love the E.T. ride, I'm amazed that it's still there. It's been there for my entire life, and it never seems like people are TOO into it still. I'm not saying I want to see it go, but it is a little outdated.



If you grew up in the 90s, you might remember that Nickelodeon Studios was at Universal Studios Orlando. This is probably the thing that I'm the most sad about that was taken away from the park. It would be so cool if they still had a separate Nickelodeon part. All they have now is the Spongebob-themed store. I remember going to Nickelodeon Studios when I was little and seeing people get slimed and seeing the set up Allegra's Window (an old Nick Jr. show). I don't remember much else, but they did have a big slime machine outside. I wish I could've seen it when I was a little older so I could remember more of it. I don't even know if I have any pictures of it.




Obviously my favorite part now is the Wizarding World, but I also love the Jurassic Park section. They added something new this year where you can have an interaction with a raptor and get your picture taken with it. They have a mechanical raptor that comes out and sniffs your head and rubs its face against you and will snap and growl at you too. I saw many a person scream or jump when it did this to them while I waited in line for my turn.






Spiderman is my favorite superhero, so I always enjoy going to the Marvel part of Universal as well as Toon Lagoon which has lots of the newspaper comic strip characters. I got to meet Spiderman this year, which was awesome. He asked me if I was a map because of my dress and I told him that I was. The photographer asked him if he was lost and he said, "Not now that I have my map!". Later on, he drove by on a quad type thing, pointed at me, and shouted "MY MAP!".






I also got to meet Lucy this year. I love that they still have someone dressed as her there to meet with guests. It's nice when they make improvements and introduce new things, but I also like when some things never change. It's nice to hold onto a little bit of nostalgia and tradition from all the years that I've gone down there and all the amazing memories I have there during my childhood.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

March Wishlist

Hooray for official springtime! March is almost over, and that means we're that much closer to consistent warm weather. This month, I am feeling patterns, bright colors, and graphic/band tees.

I love the cocktail patterned Lindy Bop dress. I love the retro vibe it has. It reminds me of the 60s. Plus Lindy Bop is awesome and all of their dresses are so well made and fit great!

The royal blue polka dot halter dress and the turquoise polka dot romper are both from Unique Vintage, and they are both equally cute. They make me wish summer was here. The pineapple dress from Sourpuss Clothing also makes me wish summer were here. It'd be the perfect dress for a luau or barbecue!

The two t-shirts are from Hot Topic. I love the Poe one for many reasons: 1. My cat is named Poe after Edgar Allan Poe, 2. I love Edgar Allan Poe, 3. I love Queen and if you can't read the text, Poe is saying "I'm just a Poe boy and nobody loves me" and the Raven is saying "He's just a Poe boy from a Poe family." It's awesome.

I actually have the romper from ASOS in black, and I love it. It's so comfortable and flattering. I would love to own it in this pretty pastel pink color for the spring! The sunglasses are also from ASOS and they are gloriously huge and awesome. They remind me of a pair that I used to have from a thrift shop. They were my favorite pair until they unfortunately broke. :(

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

9 3/4

Once again, I found myself clutching a (figurative) acceptance letter to Hogwarts and was able to visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Universal Orlando! This is always the most exciting part of a trip to Florida for me. The warm weather is a close second.







This year, we started our Wizarding World journey in the newer section where King's Cross and Diagon Alley are built. It was significantly less crowded this year since it's been open for about a year and a half now. It was easier to navigate and explore without the dense crowds. The wait times for everything weren't bad at all, either. The Escape from Gringotts ride is usually the longest wait, but I believe it was only about 10-20 minutes for us.






Diagon Alley is the best. There's lots to look at and it's all so well done. The dragon is awesome and shoots fire every so often.








Gringotts Bank is extremely well done. The goblins look so real and the chandeliers are gorgeous and pretty close to what the movie looks like. I like the touches they add such as the moving newspapers and the shadows of Harry, Ron, and Hermione (dressed as Bellatrix) behind one of the rooms as you wait in line. You can hear them talking to each other too.










I also really like the Knockturn Alley part where it's all dark and spooky just as it should be. Borgin & Burkes is fun to go in. They have all kinds of dark wizard and Death Eater merchandise as well as lots of cool props. They even have the Vanishing Cabinet and you can hear the bird tweeting inside of it. They also have the trunk that Mad-Eye Moody was kept captive in and it moves sometimes.





The train is also awesome. I think out of everything, the train looks the best. It's a real train (not just a ride) and it looks exactly like the one in the movie. I couldn't get a good picture of it this time, but I have some from last year. There's a fake one in Hogsmeade though where it's supposed to look like it stopped for people to get off. I also can't get enough of all the 9 3/4 signs.








I had lots of treats in the Wizarding World, mostly in Hogsmeade. I had both pumpkin juice and Butterbeer this year. I usually just opt for the pumpkin juice, but I thought I should give the Butterbeer a try again. I had the non-frozen one even though everyone says it's better frozen. I also had a pumpkin pasty again this year from Honeydukes, but they looked different from last year. Last year they looked like little mini pumpkin pies. This year they looked more like a pie crust filled with filling and sealed like a sort of pie pocket. I also had Butterbeer ice cream in the Diagon Alley part from Florean Fortescue's Ice Cream Parlour.








I wore my Marauder's Map dress again this year. I decided on the blue shoes to represent my house, which is Ravenclaw. We only rode the Gringotts ride this year, not the Hogwarts one. The Hogwarts one can be a little nauseating just because of the way it moves with the screen. I feel that Diagon Alley is more interesting than the Hogsmeade part, but Hogsmeade is still really awesome. It's all awesome, really.





Dress: Hot Topic//Shoes: H&M//Belt: Thrifted//Lipstick: LORAC Cosmetics
Can you believe that this is all only a part of Universal Orlando? They have so much there, and I think they are building a lot of new stuff. There were several rides that were closed for either renovations or to build new rides in their place. I can't wait to see what is to come!