Sunday, August 22, 2010

Out of Training!

I've been out of training for a few days and have decided that I may never leave--at least not as soon as I've planned.  I'm still adjusting to everything but I don't have anything to complain about.  I'm never bored because everyday is different.  I hardly work with the same people, which can be a double edged sword  because although its great to meet so many different people and have a lot of variety in my day to day work it kind of sucks because I'm not given much time to get know all of them.  I was really excited when I was scheduled with on the girls who was in my training group yesterday :) 

Today I was friends with Annie from the Little Einsteins--she's a cute little three year old with blonde pigtails.  She like to play patty cake with her friend Leo, chase shadows and twirl around in her dress.  She even did the electric slide when her attendant suggested it.  (Attendants walk around and stay with the characters and performers to make sure they're safe while out in the parks). A lot of the younger guests in Hollywood studios enjoy Annie's company. 

Work is becoming much easier and I'm not as tired at the end of my shifts. Yay.  I've also had the chance to go to venture to the Magic Kingdom.  I rode a few rides but spent most of my time walking around taking pictures, watching parades and shows and just enjoying being a guest in the Magic Kingdom.  I think on my next day off I'll either visit EPCOT or Hollywood Studios.  Before I leave here I want to do an around the world at EPCOT--this is where you go around to each of the countries and try one of their specialty drinks.  It sounds fun and tasty :)  I'm meeting more people in my apartment complex so I have more people to go out and visit the parks with.  Tomorrow is another pool party so I'm sure I'll meet even more people then. 

Still feeling the magic
ºoº .•:*¨¨*:•.Samantha.•:*¨¨*:•. ºoº

Sunday, August 15, 2010


I’m almost too tired to post but I don’t want to leave you all in the dark or get too far behind. I think I left off on Thursday so I’ll start there. That was my first day of actual job training which consists of 5 full days. My training group has only 7 members all of who are super awesome. On the first day we learned a lot of the rules and regulations of the job. We all got to try on pieces of our costumes—that was interesting. Friday was the first day in full costume. It seemed a little unreal at first but we all became pretty comfortable with our new jobs.

Saturday was our first day out in the parks. I was Donald Duck’s friend that day and got to interact with a lot of guests. He is considered a VIP along with Minnie, Mickey, Goofy, Pluto and sometimes Daisy so I was really busy. My work schedule wasn’t too bad because I’m only outside for a short-while with Donald before I get a 30 min break. However, in training it really isn’t a break because we are going over more rules and stuff at that time. I had a lot of fun that day—Donald’s butt cracks me up when he walks, you’ve got to see it! I was super tired and very hungry when the day was finished. The days go by really quickly but take a lot out of you. But even considering that, this still feels like summer camp to me instead of my actual job because it’s so much fun.

Today (Sunday), I was friends with Suzy one of Cinderella’s mice helpers. She is fun to be around because she wears one of those really large hoop skirts and it’s fun to watch her move and dance in it. The little girls love to give her BIG hugs and dance with her. Thursday through Saturday I worked 8:30 to 5:30 and today I worked 8-5. At this point, I’m just plain EXHAUSTED. I got home by 5:45—ate dinner and fell asleep around 6:30. I was woken up by all of my roomies getting home around 8:30. I’m still tired but want to try and stay up until at least 10:30 so that I’m able to sleep through the night. I’m supposed to be back to work at 8. I can’t wait for my days off on Thursday and Friday. They seem forever away. Next week I’m off Friday and Saturday so I’m getting pretty good days off. I hope it stays like that (but it probably won’t) so I can fly back to Raleigh for 2 days in October. I will have SOO many stories to tell by then. I already have quite a few but can’t share them through my blog :(

I still haven’t gone to the parks because I haven’t really had the time but hopefully I’ll make my way over there on one of my days off. The other day I’m going to spend at the pool because I’m starting to lose my tan and that is NOT acceptable in Florida lol. Tomorrow is my last day of training. WOOHOO! But I’m kind of sad that I’ll be leaving my training group-I’ve really grown to like my fellow trainees but I’m sure we’ll all keep up. The boys live in the same apartment complex as me and the girls aren’t too far away. One of the guys knows all of Lady Gaga’s dances by heart and is really good at performing them—it is really entertaining to watch.

Well I think that is all I have for now. If you guys have any specific questions for me—feel free to ask, I’m not sure what you want to hear. If I can’t answer it on my blog I’ll try to send it in a message.

Hope you’re all having a magical night!

ºoº .•:*¨¨*:•.Samantha.•:*¨¨*:•. ºoº

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

My Job is Better than Yours :)

Hey so its been a few days and some people are asking for an update. This is going to be really random and all over the place but that’s what I get for waiting so long to blog. I’ve decided not to reveal my character to perserve the integrity of the Disney Company.  So far I’ve been crazy busy moving in and attending a lot of meetings. On Monday, I filled out all of my initial paperwork got my room key and was sent down to casting for fingerprinting and background checks. That took several hours and by the time I was done it was dinner time so I went and had my last meal with my mom and Jim at Cici’s. They left close to 8 pm. My roommates are all nice so no problems on that front so far.

On Tuesday, I had a housing meeting which was rather intimidating because their favorite phrase was “you’ll be terminated.” They’re pretty strict here and it seems like you can be terminated for almost anything so we’ll all have to be on our toes. A bunch of us have made it a running joke. The meeting was only supposed to be 2 hours but ended up being 3 because everyone kept asking rather stupid questions. We aren’t allowed to open the windows here but were not made aware of that until Tuesday. Well this one kid I met on Monday told me at the housing meeting that he had tried to open his window and ended up breaking it. He’s luck he didn’t fall through. I told him he better be glad he broke it before the housing meeting or “he’d be TERMINATED” lol. He told me he wasn’t feeling the magic of Disney quite yet and I don’t blame him.

Today was my first day of paid work but I wasn’t doing my actual job. It was just a traditions class on all things Disney. I got to take a tour of the underground tunnels in the Magic Kingdom—that was really cool. It’s kind of like a Willy Wonka moment when you go from backstage to onstage. You go from normal people to fairytale land it really is amazing and feels magical. Yea I know, my job is definitely better than yours :) I got my name tag today which is a pretty big deal because mickey mouse delivered them—everyone was sooo excited. I also got my Disney ID which lets me get all of my discounts and entries into the park. I was going to go this afternoon but its raining right now. It rains here ALOT.

Tomorrow, I start training for my actual character role and am super excited. I think it’s still going to be a bunch of rule learning because the attire is professional but the rest of my training days are in rehearsal clothes.  I do know that while I’m here I’ll probably less modest about changing in front of people. Poor Belle today missed her bus and ended up getting on our bus and was running really late for her show in Tune town. She wasn’t completely dressed yet so had to finish dressing on the bus. A guy on my program was nice enough to hold up his jacket in front of her so she’d have some privacy. Poor girl. Note to self the buses here do not stop for you if you run after them like they do in chapel hill.

I’m going to leave you with some interesting Disney language because they definitely have their own way of communicating:

No such thing as lost children---just lost parents

NO Kiddie leashes—they’re toddler tethers

You’ll never have to pick up someone’s vomit or puke—just clean up they’re protein spills

Ok thats it for now. Pool party tomorrow if I get off of work in time and its not raining )



Saturday, August 7, 2010

Arrived in Florida

Well I've made it to Florida but left my life in North Carolina.  I'm currently in St. Petersburg visiting my stepsister before heading to Orlando on Monday.  It seems though that I've left everything important at home.  I need my social security card/or passport to fill out employee eligibility forms on Monday but guess what.  I have left  both of those documents at home.  My sister will have to overnight them to me as soon as I figure out my address.  I hope they still let me check in---keep your fingers crossed.

I've also left my external harddrive at home with all of my Bones and True Blood episodes!  OH NO! I'll have that mailed as well along with my GPS that didn't come in the mail until today (I used my sister's to get here)

Oh and I'm still missing my wireless router, but Alex Miller will be taking care of that soon....hopefully.

Other than all of the missing things.  I'm here safe and its Hottt outside.  Miss you all.

L & L

Monday, August 2, 2010

A week before it all begins (Part 2)

Part 2
With only a week before starting at Disney I’m not too worried about being home sick but more like Chapel Hill sick. I really fell in love with that place and the people who are there. With having gone to summer school every summer I haven’t left Chapel Hill for more than a few weeks at a time in the past four years. I had a slight break down leaving the other day—my friends had to remind me that they weren’t dying and that they would be visiting. Other than that I feel ready to go..I ordered a GPS the other day and hope it comes in soon so I don’t get lost trying to find my way around Florida. My parents are going to drive down with me so we can use theirs to get there and I can have mine for the rest of the time.

I’ve read quite a few blogs of people who’ve participated in the internship before but I’m still not exactly sure what to expect upon arrival. The apartments that I’ve seen look really nice so I hope that holds to be true. I’m also anxious to meet my roommate and housemates. I had a roommate assigned to me but I cancelled her (I know that sounds horrible) but I tried to contact her several weeks ago to talk about what we’d each bring and to just introduce myself and never got a response. Well since then I haven’t been reassigned a roomie so maybe I’ll have a room to myself?? I think that’s wishful thinking on my part. I also still don’t know which character I’ll be but I’m not stressing about that anymore. I think I’ll be happy being whatever they select for me. It’d be amazing to be Tinkerbell but I’m not going to get my hopes up because that is a long shot. Either way, it’s an experience right? It may even be more interesting if I’m a weird character like stitch. Haha I think that’s all I have for now. I’ll update again once I move in :) and of course I’ll post pictures

L & L


Sunday, August 1, 2010

How I got here and a week before it begins (Part 1)

This first blog is in two parts because it’s so exhaustingly long. But I promise you none of my other postings will even compare to the length of these.

Part 1 (How I got here)

So I guess the story starts way back in 2003 my sophomore year in high school when my friend Rachel Hatton told me that I reminded her of a little fairy named Tinkerbell. I think she said this because I was small, blonde and wore excessive amounts of glitter that could act as pixie dust. I’ve always thought I’ve acted a bit like this fictional character—short tempered sassy, and tad bit jealous. So from that point on I slowly started collecting Tinkerbell paraphernalia. This small collection has grown to be ridiculous in size over the years. I have practically everything room decor, my laptop cover, my house keys, I even have a Tinkerbell car complete with a Tinkerbell license plate. When I lived in the dorms my college friends all thought I had a 3 year olds room...I once invited my friend Caitlyn home with me and she said “I thought your dorm room was bad but damn Sam this room is fairly land.” People who first meet me don’t always remember my name but can remember my obsession with Tinkerbell so they either call me Tinkerbell or “the Tinkerbell girl” which I guess doesn’t bother me too much. So you get the picture I’m strangely obsessed with this fictional Disney fairy.

I hadn’t ever thought of working for Disney until someone mentioned being Tinkerbell in Disney World would be the perfect job for me. I didn’t even know how one went about obtaining a job as a character. I found the Disney college program after searching the internet my sophomore year in college. The Disney college program offers several internships one of which being a character performer. You have to complete an interview and audition before getting the job. I went through an interview process to start working my spring semester of my sophomore year. However, I did not go to the audition because I decided I did not want the internship at that time. I couldn’t see myself taking a semester off from UNC Chapel Hill to go work in Disney World. They told me in my interview that if I was still interested in the internship but was concerned with missing a semester of school I could reapply for it for the semester after graduation. So that is exactly what I did. I’m taking year off of school before graduate school and going to Disney world :)

I auditioned back in March in Atlanta, Georgia. I drove alone 6 hours there on a Sunday morning, auditioned 5 hours and drove 6 hours back because I had class Monday afternoon. I know that sounds like an awful trip which all the driving was but overall it wasn’t that bad because I had a ton of fun. When you first get there you all line up, get a number and have your picture taken. There was a little over of 100 of us at that audition. (They told us over 1000 people audition throughout 6 big cities in the US). We had to perform a small eight count dance before they made the first cut. Despite being a cheerleader all throughout high school most of you know I’m not very coordinated and cannot dance very well. My friend Anna says I don’t dance but bee-bop (more of bouncing around than dancing—I’ve heard it’s pretty entertaining to watch.) With that being said I didn’t think I’d make it to the next round and was so busy packing my bags that I didn’t even hear my number being called for round 2. Another girl had to point out that I needed to go into the room for the next step of the audition. We then had to do an animation exercise where we pretend to be our favorite Disney character without talking (the judges are supposed to know which character you are through your nonverbal communication.) I’m sure we all looked ridiculous I know that I did because I was running around making pouty faces, showing attitude and flapping imaginary wings HAHA. Its embarrassing but I made it to round 3 where we had to perform a really long intense dance. I know that I messed up majorly but still had fun. Upon leaving the audition they tell you that “out of the 1000 that audition only 200 are selected so don’t be upset if you don’t get the are all fabulous and we hope you have a magical day”—so Disney like to say. At that point I wasn’t counting on getting the job but was just proud of myself for trying and I knew that I had a great time and would have regretted not making the trip to Atlanta. Several weeks went by before they contacted me and offered me a position as a character performer :) I still don’t know which character but am super excited to be going.