9/04/2018

Jesus is the Grandest Adventure

Adventure is out there.

That's what we've always heard. That's what we grew up thinking and dreaming. We dream of far off places and fantastic experiences. We dream of getting away and finding something truly spectacular.

Adventure is out there. 

But where is there?



During the past year, I've spent a considerable amount of time where most people would consider there is. Five months in Disney. One month in London. Three weeks in NYC. Two weeks in Ireland, Germany, and France. I guess you could say that I've been there this past year.



The funny thing about there is that if feels an awful more like here than I expected. I'm still the same person there as I am here. My body still needs sleep and food. I still struggled with the same things.

My adventures delighted me, but they weren't in and of themselves life giving. They were actually rather draining. I came back from each one tired physically, emotionally, and spiritually. And even after traveling much this year, I'm still searching for there. 




I think that though my mind and heart had adventured away during the past year, my soul had been a little abandoned. The quest for adventure isn't just a heart and mind thing. It is most fundamentally a soul thing. I think that God created our souls to long for adventure.

Where, then, is this adventure that our souls long for?

It is in Jesus, my friends.

Jesus is the grandest adventure. God is the journey that our souls long for.



Jesus is the epic story of love and loss, battles and victory. God is the glorious beauty to behold; He is indeed the Creator and definition of true beauty. Jesus is the driving purpose and excitement of our lives. In God is a rich history, splendid present, and promising future. He is ever unfolding to us more of Himself for us to discover.

That's the truly exciting part. You see, I got to go to some pretty cool places. I saw Buckingham Palace, the Harry Potter Studios in London, the Eiffel Tower, and so much more. However, I didn't go to these places as a participant but as a spectator. I didn't visit these cities as a citizen but as a tourist.



God, though, gives us a place in the adventure. He gives us citizenship in His kingdom. Suddenly, this adventure becomes more than just a stop in our life but becomes our life itself. It is an adventure that doesn't end. It doesn't leave us dry and wanting more.



Following Jesus is the grandest adventure of our existence, not because it is filled with excitement and love and purpose (which is it) but because it is centered around God. And God is with us. Immanuel. And God is for us. Our cups overflows.

I may have come home from a year of traveling, but the real adventure, the grandest adventure, is only just beginning.



So I guess adventure isn't out there after all. Immanuel changed all of that when He brought adventure right here with us.

Jesus, thank you for taking us on this adventure. May we follow. May we worship. May You be glorified.



It's been a while! Perhaps, because this crazy year has settled down, this blog will get some more attention. Please comment below your recent adventures with Jesus and around the earth.

More posts to come about my travels!

Princess Hannah

1/24/2018

Capturing Magical Moments


"Once upon a time, there was a Magic Kingdom made of hopes and childhood fantasies. A timeless place where every land was filled with wonder. A place where everyone who entered its gates would be given the gift of the young at heart."

(Julie Andrews)


I love Magic Kingdom with all of my heart. Naturally, I did a photoshoot in my favorite nooks and crannies with my amazing and beautiful roommate, Hannah. From the little alcove in Main Street, to the outer rim of the castle courtyard in Fantasyland, we hit almost all of my favorite spots (excluding Rapunzel's tower, of course, but that will be for a future blog post). 


It was a truly magical day filled with iPhone pictures. Seriously, we took almost 800 pictures. I've chosen my favorite 30, though, to share today. Major photo creds goes to Hannah, who did such an excellent job! 


One of my favorite things to do in Magic Kingdom, and really any park, is to find the out of the way spots, the little spaces where you can really see and experience the magic in a personal way. These places shown are some of the best spots to savor the magic.

The door shown in the beginning is on the left side of Main Street as you walk in, in the middle of The Emporium. The light post and flower pictures are in the little alcove on Main Street in between the jewelry store and the collectibles store. 


Shirt (similar): Target

Skirt: Target

Cardigan (similar): Old Navy

Jeans: Kohls


And what's a Magic Kingdom picture without the elusive rose gold ears? I always told guests that they were a mythical Disney creature with a disappearing act because they are so hard to find!


Mickey bars and the castle. It's a classic.






This little beauty is on the right side of the castle coming from Main Street. It has a great view!



I love this area! It's by Philharmagic.







These little arches in the courtyard of Fantasyland, behind the castle, are great places to take pictures. You can also see the Fairy Godmother and the Step Sisters around here sometimes. 










This is one of my favorite sunset spots! It's in front of the Crystal Palace




As I like to say, have a magical day! Comment below a magical moment you recently experienced. Thank you all bunches <3 p="">

Princess Hannah

1/17/2018

The Magical World of Strollers

The second most popular question I get about my DCP experience, following "how was Disney," is "what did you do?"

Oh, let me tell you. The technical name for my position was Magic Kingdom Park Arrival Merchandise. But because that's a mouthful, we just called it Magic Kingdom strollers.



Going into this position, I felt really nervous. I remember crying to my mom the night before I moved in because I had no idea what this job was or how I would like it. It appeared to be mostly outside, which concerned me to no end. The probability of being inside was the whole reason I chose merchandise!


However, I soon began to make friends with my coworkers. They became my family, and strollers then became my home for the next five months.


I still haven't answered the question, though. What did I do at my job?



Well, I mostly rented out strollers, wheelchairs, and ECVs (scooters). I also could work at two little gift shops on either side of the train station. Sometimes I would bring out strollers to families. Other times I would put ECVs back in the storage room. I could help people rent ECVs (which mostly meant telling guests that we were out). I might stand out in front of the train station during the end of the day and direct guests where to return their strollers but mostly tell guests how to get to the monorail.


My job involved a lot of diversity and movement that most merchandise locations didn't include. I liked how it kept me moving, changing, and talking. I always got my steps in for the day. It offered on stage positions with lots of guest interaction but also a few backstage positions which gave me a relief from constantly telling people where to find the restroom.




Outside to the left, by City Hall. 

That phrase is engraved on my tongue now. Naturally, we took a picture in front of the restrooms, as shown above.


My job also was perfectly positioned. I got to see almost every guest as they entered and again as they exited. From various positions, I had front row seats to the parades, fireworks, and atmosphere of the park. Watching "Boo to You" for the Halloween party never got old. Crowding around with my coworkers to catch "Happily Ever After" got more magical every time. I felt proud of how I memorized the rhythm and patterns of the fireworks.


The best part of my job, though, was my coworkers. They made me laugh off the hard days, cherish the good days, and wish my days at strollers was longer. We became a family unlike anything I've experienced before. I learned so much from my coworkers, especially the ones that I differed from in personality type. I got to be friends with wonderful people from around the world, and now I really want to travel to new countries and places. The strollers family showed me a bit more of what loyalty, community, and fun look like. I'm so glad we found each other!


My favorite moments of my program were at two in the morning. At the end of the day, after all the guest left the park, we went to get the strollers that guests left behind. All of the Lands (Fantasyland, Frontierland, etc) brought their abandoned strollers to the Hub (right in front of the castle). We simply went to the Hub to bring them back down Main Street and into the train station.


I would stroll down Main Street, which was finally still and peaceful. Ghosts of laughing children and busy moms lingered in front of the store fronts, but right then, it was only me and Main Street. The music still played, as if it was just for me. I saw details on the buildings that I missed in the crowds. I also saw a lot of strollers for me to bring back.


Then I got to the castle. Oh, that view never got old. There she was, tall and beautiful. As I circled the Hub getting strollers, I often got distracted looking at the castle. There wasn't a crowd of people around the castle trying to take selfies. The smoke from the fireworks cleared away. The chaos of Snapchat and Instagram and Facetime disappeared. It was just me and Cinderella's Castle.


Is it weird that I feel as if I know the castle a bit? As if she has a personality that only truly reveals itself after hours? Maybe this is too much of a Toy Story vibe, but nonetheless, I miss the castle more than I miss a lot of other things about Disney. I miss her sparkling lights and sense of wonder. I guess Cinderella's Castle is the flouting lights to my Rapunzel dream.


Those moments of strolling down Main Street and enjoying Cinderella's Castle with just myself and my coworkers were my favorite moments of the program. They made me wonder, laugh, reflect, and cry. They made the hard parts of my job fade away from the lights of my favorite place on earth.


So yeah, that's what I did. It wasn't always glamorous, but it was magical.

Princess Hannah