How to Maximize Your Time at Disneyland

It’s FastpassMaster here! With the holiday season in full swing, I wanted to dedicate this post to giving some of my top tips for having the most magical experience in Disneyland and California adventure, if you choose to get the Park Hopper Pass which I 10/10 recommend.  I haven’t been to Disneyland in a few year (tragic), but the last time I went, no joke, I planned for weeks. I was so stressed from school that researching all the tips and tricks when visiting the Happiest Place on Earth genuinely made me even more excited to go. I looked at almost every Disneyland based blog, bought every book and watch too many Disneyland vlogs. I even made an itinerary for what I wanted to do when once we got to the parks. It was bad. But through all of my research I learned so many tricks that people often don’t know about!

I’m a firm believer that if you play your cards right, you can experience everything Disneyland and California Adventure have to offer in three days. But you have to know what you want to do. Buy your tickets online beforehand to avoid spending time in lines that can get extremely long. Also print out a map, or pick one up at the park so you are very prepared when you walk through the gates. Also, I could not recommend getting the official Disneyland App enough, before you go to the park. It not only has an interactive map that displays your location, but it also includes menus for restaurants, the ability to track where your favorite characters are in the park, manage your Fastpasses, and check wait times for all the attractions. If you really want to minimize time spent waiting in line, check which rides get the busiest during specific times during the day, days in advance to make a prediction of when the best time is to ride an attraction .  

When planning your trip, I really recommend staying at one of the Disney Hotels. I’ll probably dedicate a blog post to describing each one in detail, but the Disneyland Hotel, Paradise Pier, and the Grand Californian all have their own special themes and perks. Staying on location offers several key benefits; the guests receive magic hours where the park is opened only to them for an hour certain days in the park. Staying in a Disney Hotel also allows for the park to very close for those who prefer a short travel time. Your occupancy also allows you to charge merchandise directly to your room!

To maximize time, I would also use transportation systems as much as possible. The railroad and monorail for example offer a fun experience that can also  take you throughout the park. The monorail even runs through Downtown Disney. To maximize time, one should also determine when it is a popular time to have meals or not, to reduce wait times at a sit-down restaurant. Also try to have an open mindset; realize it is not the end of the world if you don’t go on every possible ride. Prioritize to get the most out of your trip!

I hope these tips will help you in the future to maximize your time in Disneyland!

And remember, “To all those who come to this happy place: Welcome.”

~Fastpass Master

Snatch Royale

Snatch Royale. This probably makes no sense to you unless you have ran cross country or track at IHS.

Snatch Royale is a run that he cross country team does before certain meets. However the focus is less about the run and more the tradition. Many teams have traditions which start from some random occurrence. For example Snatch Royale, it came from 3 parts. First, the original run snatch, named that way because it goes through the hatchery. Second, making up a run instead of the original run. And finally the current trend among the runners. The trend was a game called Clash Royale. When these all coincided a new run and tradition was formed.

Most cross country and track teams have one tradition or another. The traditions are often a very uniting force amongst teams. Traditions, while only psychological, can improve performances. If a runner always eats the same food the day of a race, or fixes their shoes the same way, they may experience a better and faster race.

Runners also have a tendency to create traditions, and they are often very difficult to understand. The runners are often part of these because they become so engrained into their minds. These often become a second nature. The tradition may be setting as simple as repeating something daily with your shoes. It can also be something that can be flexible and dependent on what you are doing.

Traditions are often a result of events happening simultaneously and them becoming ingrained in the runners mind.

    XC spikes with tape.

Having fun in the snow

Hey guys!

Its almost that time where people need to start thinking about those cold, brisk nights where the roads are puffy with ice. The good news is, there are many great vehicles ready to take on the snow, the problem is that people seem to just think basic crossovers are the only way to get a car for the snow. In fact, there are many fun cars to toss around in the snow and can perform well in those circumstances.

Starting with the Toyota 4Runner. Oh boy, this is probably one of the absolute best off-road machines out in the industry. You can choose from 3 different four wheel drive configurations, and each trim level is built specifically different compared to others. I recommend the top two trims, the Limited or the TRD Pro. The Limited is very luxurious and has features like a 15 speaker sound system, heated seats and 4 power outlets for those times you get stuck in the snow. If you have a family, a third row is also an option on the Limited. The Limited’s four wheel drive system is comfort-oriented so those bumps will not make you go crazy. The Limited has also was tested by motor trend on the most dangerous highway in Alaska. The TRD Pro is so dedicated for off road events that Toyota tested it in the the snowiest of climates and it has prevailed. The TRD Pro has features that are dedicated for the snow, with controls for different ride selections and suspension changes.

The Subaru Impreza is also a good choice. Yes its incredibly boring, and pretty much every neighborhood has one. But the Impreza actually shines bright when you option in the Sti package. You add in a turbo charger, and you also get around 300 hp. These rice rockets are very good in the snow for its power when going up a slope, and they are very fun sliding around and it has that playful nature that most four wheel drive cars have.

If you have a lot of money in your wallet, get yourself one of the most exotic cars in the business, the Lamborghini Aventador. Yes, its a car that is worth half a million, but in theory it works out because of it has 740 horsepower which can make the car go very quick in snowy situations. This car is incredibly enjoyable to drive, but its incredibly expensive.

In the end, there are many cars to choose from, and these three cars are extremely amazing for snow. Just be safe and have fun everybody!

Image result for lamborghini aventador

Week 14!

Little late with the post for week 13 but here are the game previews (and one review)

Falcons 20 Saints 17 FINAL Thursday

The NFC south could easily be the best division in the NFL at the moment. With two teams in playoff spots,  and one team a game behind, this divisional race is heating up. Especially when the one, two and three seeds in the division are within a game of each other.

Vikings @ Panthers 10:00AM Sunday

Both teams come into this leading their respective divisions and one team with a highly contested one, the other able to clinch theirs soon. The Vikings can clinch the NFC north with a win and a shot at the first round bye. The Panthers however are barely in the lead, and because the Falcons beat the Saints if they lose, they will be second to them.

Seahawks @ Jaguars 1:25PM Sunday

This will be a matchup of two of the NFL’s highest rated defenses. The Seahawks are in second place in the NFC west currently, and can move towards first with a win over the Jags. The Jaguars are tied with the Titans and can keep that tie with a home victory over the Seahawks. As of now, both of these teams are playoff bound.

Eagles @ Rams 1:25PM Sunday

The Eagles have began to loosen up, with one win against a team over .500 they have shown laziness last week with a big loss to the Seahawks. If the Eagles are for real they must show it this week in a crucial game. The Rams are barely in the lead of the NFC west and they need every victory they can get. A loss here would hurt their playoff chances.

Around the league

-Saints QB Drew Brees blasts the NFL because players that play on Thursday have a disadvantage because of the little rest they get. “Thursday games are absolutely unfair” says Brees, who lost 20-17 against the Falcons on Thursday

-Hated NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has signed a new 5-year contract. On Wednesday the NFL and Roger signed a deal where he would accumulate $40 million per year over the next five years. There are incentives that could total to more than $45 million

Image result for roger goodell

Opinion: Breakout Artist Khalid Needs Better Producers

Grammy Nominated singer-songwriter Khalid is one of the biggest names in pop music in 2017. His debut album American Teen peaked at number 9 on the Billboard charts, and his joint single Silence with EDM producer Marshmello reached number one on the billboard charts. Earlier in the year, his single Rollin by Calvin Harris reached number one as well, so there’s no doubt that The 19-Year old El Paso native has talent and a promising career ahead of him. However, I personally find his music to be a bit boring. While he has a fantastic voice and ear for music, I think that in order for Khalid to thrive as a artist, he should continue to partner with talented producers such as Calvin Harris and Marshmello. The production on his solo tracks, though, aren’t interesting or inspired enough to catch my attention. Maybe I’m too jaded to certain music, but I do want to see Khalid succeed in the music industry. A good example of an artist that has a good voice is Logic, whose producer Arjun Ivatury, aka 6ix, has worked with him consistently since 2011. Khalid has collaborated with Logic on the song 18002738255 along with Allesia Cara, and that song is currently nominated for song of the year at the Grammys.  Maybe Khalid should make a friend or two whom he can rely on to produce interesting, sonically progressive instrumentals. He’s worked with lots of different producers thus far, for better and for worse. I think that he has lots of potential as a long standing artist if he can make these changes in his musical career.

Healthy Living

This is a healthy living blog, where I am not telling you how to live, but telling you what has worked for me. A huge part of “healthy living” is in your head. It’s being happy.

But what is happy? It’s it the same as beauty? In the eye of the beholder…so yes, different things make different people happy, and that is one thing you should always remember: no one is you. They may be similar, but no one thinks the way you do, acts the way you do, or lives the way you do. Your life, is in your hands, and you are the one who is going to live it, so live it to your standards, whatever they may be.

In my experience, a big part of being “happy”, is seeing every situation as a lesson to be learned. That way, if there is a next time, you know how to handle the situation and have more control of the outcome.

Also, just being positive, and taking advantage of the moment. If you are at a party, why would you be thinking of that math test you have on Monday? Of course, don’t totally forget because that will just cause sadness, but dance your heart out in that moment and feel the world around you. You only get so much time to do that, so why waste time? Your time is precious, so don’t give it to people who aren’t worth it. And that’s where you learn to whom to give your time, and when to just go by yourself. Choose your battles wisely. 🙂

God bless everyone. Have a happy day and keep moving forward. The earth keeps turning, after all, and she doesn’t wait for anyone.

Happy waffle breakfasts are the best ways to start the day!

Keep Running

Keeping your speed is increasingly important the shorter the race is.

Hey runners,

The most difficult part of running is to not stop. While stopping can often be more difficult than maintaining your speed stopping feels much better in the short term. The key is to keep running the entire time.

In order to keep running depends on what distance the race is. For a half marathon, my motivation through the last few miles was pride. I was not willing to stop running as it would have meant the first miles where for nothing.

In shorter distances from 800-1600 my mentality is not so much about keeping running, but rather how much is left and about the race strategy. These races need nothing more than just a will to race and finish, neither is outside of the range of any humans running distance.

For road races and longer track races, 3200-5000 and 5 miles it is more the remainder of the race is the focus. I view these races as more of a mile by mile. It also is helpful to think I only need two more miles or however far left.

To stay running is also personal and what you need to do is find your motivation to keep running. This can be anything if it helps you. When I was begginging my first races and longer training runs I thought “get past this tree” or “finish this lap then you can relax.” With these the key is to not actually let yourself follow what you say you would when you reach the goal.

Whatever you decide to use as your motivation make sure that you are committed to following the plan. Getting through the hard parts of the run are what makes training or the race worth it.

The Holiday Season in Disneyland

It is officially the Holiday Season in the Disney parks! Disneyland is dazzling during the winter time; with its revamped holiday inspired rides, various events, impressive decorations and amazing seasonal food, there is no absence of holiday cheer in this park! Personally, I’ve never been to Disneyland during this time, yet I really hope to someday, it’s definitely on my Disney-related bucketlist! Until then though, I don’t mind watching videos and looking at pictures that display the Holiday festivities that take place around the park! I have never seen a place so decorated covered in lights and pine wreaths! From the second you enter Main Street, you are greeted by a 60 feet tall Christmas tree covered in colorful lights and ornaments. As you go down Main Street you can see Sleeping Beauty’s Castle decorated in icicle style lights. The castle looks breathtaking and is an amazing location to take Winter Wonderland inspired pictures.

Although most of Disneyland is experience by the Holiday season in terms of decorations, there are specific ideas that experience a special change during this time. One of my favorite rides the “Jungle Cruise” becomes the festive “Jingle Cruise.” In addition to elements of tinsel and mini pine trees in the ride queue, the skippers of the ride offer new holiday-related jokes as you travel through fruit cake and hippopotamus infested waters. Unfortunately, the Jingle Cruise has been struck by unjustifiable tragedy. It was announced that this year that the ride will not experience its festive takeover, and might not ever again. Even this makes me unreasonably sad, there are still plenty more rides that experience a holiday takeover. For example “it’s a small world” is covered in lights and experience a holiday celebration of traditions all around the world inside of the ride. The “Haunted Mansion” in New Orleans Square becomes “Haunted Mansion Holiday” and experiences a complete renovation modeled after “The Nightmare Before Christmas.”

During this time, Disneyland also offers an array of seasonal events. Guests can enjoy “A Christmas Fantasy Parade” during the day and “Believe in Holiday Magic” Fireworks at night. Disneyland during the winter season also creates a collection of food. The most famous is probably the homemade candy canes that sell out almost immediately. Disneyland also offers candy cane flavored beignets (!!!), chocolate coffee yule logs, and peppermint ice cream.

I hope this post shed some light on the magic that happens at Disneyland during the holiday season!

And remember, “To all those who come to this happy place: Welcome.”

~Fastpass Master

Everything is REALLY OVERWHELMING and it Feels Bad

Just like this stressed out court jester I have drawn, failure is breathing down my neck and I may actually implode, each one of the cursed balls represents a potential falling grade and I am in peril.

Hi I’m that pile of homework you still haven’t done, constantly in your peripheral vision and a constant weight on your shoulders. Let’s go through some advice!

I have a wild addiction to my phone. No matter what I do I can’t put it down! It’ll be close to midnight and I’ll still have a history chapter to read and I’ll still be scrolling on Instagram! What advice do you have for destroying my addiction?? -anonymous

Phones are so hard to avoid. Like I’m in love with my portable internet screen, and I definitely get the moment you’re talking about. It’s 10-o-clock and you’re finally going to get more than 5 hours of sleep, but then as you lay your head on the pillow, you’re suddenly hit with the urge to look up the musical Cabaret and now you’re down a long path of Alan Cumming’s cinema career (on an alternate note, Alan Cumming played Floop in the modern day masterpiece that is Spy Kids 2). So how can you avoid this from happening? First, if your phone charger is near your bed, move it. The biggest thing you can do is to keep your phone out of your literal reach. If you’re worried you won’t be able to hear your alarm, then make sure it’s on blast and you have the most annoying alarm you can think of. The second thing you can do is set out a certain amount of time you’ll be on your phone. Set a timer on your phone and hide it in a drawer or something and get really productive. If you are worried about missing texts or calls, send a text to some people who would potentially text you and just give them a heads up or something. Then bam! look at how productive you are, you’re pretty much set for life.

This is so small compared to the other hulking chunks of writing I’ve seen, but I think it’ll be fine this time. If you want advice send it here https://goo.gl/forms/BJRMlvdiBgfFuqKq2

“Keep it 10% sneaky and 90% freaky”

ab-so-lutely

 

Why Yoga is the Best

Yoga. This four letter word has more benefits than just making you sound like a zen, legging wearing, twenty year old kale lover. No offense to those people, but you know. The enlightenment begins of the beauty of yoga:

The one we most think of, is flexibility. Yes, you will start to be able to touch your toes and all the crazy other stuff (it may take some time, but you will get there). Tight hips can strain the knee joint due to improper alignment of the thigh and shinbones. Tight hamstrings can lead to a flattening lumbar spin, which causes back pain.

It will help your posture! Poor posture can lead to neck, back and other muscle and joint problems, and will hurt your spine in the future. Also, each time you hit the mat, you take your joints through their full range of motion, which prevents degenerative arthritis.

Makes you happier…Yoga increases your serotonin levels and decreases cortisol, a stress hormone.

Helps you focus: in yoga, they ask you to focus on your breath, which in turn helps you focus in the moment. Studies have found that regular yoga practice improves coordination, reaction time and memory. It also helps you relax. In slowing your breath, it shifts the balance from the sympathetic nervous system to the parasympathetic nervous system, which lowers your breathing, heart rates, decreases your blood pressure and increases blood flow to the intestines and reproductive organs.

It is what you get out of it, but in my experience, it really teaches you the whole “mind over matter” thing. You can conquer anything you put your mind to. Remember that.

Have a good weekend, and keep moving forward.

Opinion: The State of Modern Hip-Hop

Everyone has different opinions on hip-hop. This is mine. The music industry is constantly changing and moving forward, and there are people who have trouble accepting these changes, taking it out on younger generations. This is specifically apparent in Hip Hop, where older rappers and people who grew up around 90s hip hop will constantly criticize the new generation of rappers. I get it. To some, it’s pretty frustrating that less lyrical and musically talented artists are making waves, but you should still respect their work ethic and the fact that they’re charting. Tastes change, and so do the sounds that gain traction. However, there are a few popular rappers who don’t respect those that paved the way for their success. Lil Yachty is a prime example.Yachty said in August of this year that he “honestly couldn’t name five songs from tupac or biggie.” A bit disrespectful, but he clarified that he just wants to make music with a positive message and thinks older rap artists lyrics are too dark and depressing. Not necessarily the case, but I guess it makes sense. Respect, though, should always be given to those who came before you. Not just in music, but in life. Some people are too self absorbed  to understand that, though. To truly appreciate what you’ve achieved, you have to look at the past and realize that you couldn’t have done this on your own. Your friends, family, and those who came before you helped you get here, and you should appreciate that.

Week 13

The playoffs are a month away, and this week has a few crucial match ups that can change around the playoff mix

Patriots @ Bills 10:00AM Sunday

The Patriots have a controlling lead in the AFC east over the Bills, who are in the wildcard hunt. The Bills made an abysmal decision benching Tyrod Taylor last week and it came to haunt them. This week he will start as the Bills are currently in a wildcard spot. The Bills control their destiny right now, but a loss could throw them completely out of the mix.

Lions @ Ravens 10:00AM Sunday

Both teams have a 6-5 record and are second in their respective divisions. The Lions remain one game behind the Seahawks who sit in the wildcard spot. The Lions need help to gain a spot as well as continuing to win out. The Ravens sit behind the Bills in a wildcard spot and with the Bills in a tough game against the Patriots, a win is Ideal for the Ravens and would put them in the wildcard spot.

Panthers @ Saints 1:25PM Sunday

This should be a fun game to watch, with both teams tied for the division lead at 8-3 this game will be crucial to the playoff race. Whoever loses this matchup will remain in the wildcard spot while the winner takes control of the NFC south.

Eagles @ Seahawks

The Eagles are one win from a playoff spot already, and are very close to clinching. The Seahawks come from an opposite way, they are sitting second in their division behind the Rams and need a win to get in control of the division. Only one team has won in Seattle this season, also from the NFC east, the Eagles hope they can do the same and cement a playoff spot early on.

Around the League

-The NFL is offering $89 million to give a group of about 40 players to end the anthem protests. The NFL has openly allowed its players to protest, which it should, and is now trying to stop the protests, hoping to gain back a little lost viewership.

-Former Patriots back-up quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo will finally make his 49er debut against the Chicago Bears, with two losing teams out of the playoff races, this is Jimmy’s chance to prove if he is the solution to Shanahan’s terrible season.Image result for garoppolo

Check around here week 14 for more previews and updates!

Birdemic is so bad its horrible (better late than never?)

So I’ve made a decision to drop the character, he wasn’t really going anywhere anyway. So from here on out, I’m just gonna give you guys a straight review.

In recent years it seems like “so bad its good movies” are all over the place. you cant scroll through youtube or any movie blog without someone talking about a SBIG film. This film is one of the crown jewels on the trash crown. After viewing the film I can’t help but agree.the film is very heavily inspired by The Birds By Alfred Hitchcock. Everything and I mean EVERYTHING is done wrong in this film. So I’m going to outline the most obvious issues that I could find. To start the whole film is shot on video. It really stands out because every shot is steeped in this ugly VHS discoloration. It really hurts to watch the movie, and it doesn’t help the pacing is slower than a snail going uphill on roller skates. no birds actually attack anyone until 40 minutes in. until this point, the characters try to make you care about them, everything goes right for them. But it is almost impossible to grow attached to these characters because they have about as much depth as a cardboard cutout of Nick Cage. the plot is so cliche and slow paced that I can guarantee that you may think that you have seen this movie before but just under another name. If you can do NOT watch this movie, it is not even worth it for a joke.

 

 

Some Cars to Avoid for 2018

Hi Everybody!

It is me again, the Car Guy, and today we will talk about some of the cars that you all should cross off your shopping list for your next cars. These cars are dinged for their reliability, owner satisfaction and other elements.

The first car goes to the brand new Fiat 500L. It essentially is a stretched Fiat 500 with two more extra doors. Although the Fiat 500 is a worldly known car for its “cutesy” looks and its “bang-for-your-buck” nature, the stretched version is just a failed car. There is only 1 engine, and its a miserable 1.4 Liter 4 cylinder with 160 hp. That doesn’t sound too like failure, but according to consumer reports, the car rides terribly and is also very busy, with problems going up the hills. The car also has one of the worst reliability records this year due to faulty transmissions, and electrical elements which could leave you stranded. Overall avoid this car at all costs. If you would like a car in the Subcompact class, you are better off getting a Honda HRV, which is a reliable, and more attractive car.

One of the most popular cars, the Ford Explorer, has been a reliability disaster for 27 years. After the firestone tire recall, the car never recovered itself. In all honesty, the car is not horrible. It has 3 engines that produce powerful numbers, and the amenities are very upscale, but the MyFord Touch system is a complete disaster to use and is also known to break down quick. Just avoid this car, and you are better off getting a Toyota Highlander and a Honda Pilot.

Some other cars are avoidable as well, the Mitsubishi Mirage, which is puny in power. The Cadillac Escalade, for its known electrical problems and for its reputation for getting stolen, the Toyota Yaris, which is a very spartan vehicle. But other than these bad cars, there’s a lot of great options to choose from. Try to go Japanese for reliability, because reliability is the most important aspect of a car in the long run.

In the end. Please avoid these cars for your safety! There’s so many better cars than these, remember to look at owner costs, reliability records and fuel efficiency to buying your best car. Happy shopping and hope you all had a nice thanksgiving!