Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Why I Left DCP

How time flies!

It's been three months since my last blog post and a lot has happened since then. 

I moved to Orlando to work for the Disney College Program in June. Throughout this time, I faced many challenges -- homesickness, roommate situations, work anxiety, and tight budgeting. Turned out working for the mouse wasn't all that it was worked up to be... This is what I feared most.

My first week was fun and games for my roommates and I. Whether we were running through the aisles of Walmart filling our grocery carts or Park Hopping, it seemed like we had were living the dream. 

I even got place at my DREAM job as a Bellhop at The Twilight Zone's Tower of Terror at Disney's Hollywood Studios. What more could I have asked for, right?
Until I became overwhelmed with learning all the legalities, mechanics and even languages that went with this position...
'Twas the first time I ever heard of the phonetic alphabet [alpha.bravo.charlie.delta.echo.foxtrot.]
On my very first day of training, I had a passed out guest on one of my unload vehicles, I saw two VIP (celebrities I don't know) groups, and had to an e-vac (emergency evacuation) on the Fifth Dimension when for some reason the ride stopped... I had one heck of a first day which led to my anxiety and insomnia. Not to mention, there was a really creepy doll in the Tower that haunted my dreams... [Hi, Caesar.] 
Thankfully I had amazing coworkers that helped me feel at ease and eventually my work anxiety vanished and I had actually enjoyed my time as a bellhop. 
Though my homesickness never quite left. On my days off, I'd take the 3 hour road trip to Miami to see my family or vice versa.

Now here's why I left:

After careful consideration and a 10 minute conversation with my mom via phone -- I made my decision. 
I called her after finding out that one of my fellow CP's had self-termed. I expressed my feelings to my mom about my overall unhappiness and not being able to adapt to Orlando/Disney lifestyle.
1. I really really missed my family and pets.
2. Sharing a dorm with 5 other people is just as difficult as you'd expect.
3. Realistically, majority of the interns in the Disney College Program are either (ONE) completely obsessed, head over heels, about Disney and anything associated with the Walt Disney Company, (TWO) come from small rural towns where them coming to live in Florida is a dream come true, (THREE) are majoring in hospitality, animation, theme park management or something among those lines, or (ALL OF THE ABOVE) 
I, however, am not as Disney obsessed as I once thought. I come from a big city like Miami where going to Orlando seems like there really isn't much to do. And I'm an education major, I want to be a teacher and I had better work opportunities here in Miami that I'm not sure were going to be waiting for me to come back. 

Ultimately, I made my decision based on finances. Working 35-40 hours a week for $9.50 an hour (minus the 101 dollars I had a pay weekly for rent) was really starting to take a toll on my heart and soul and more importantly, my bank account. 

So with that, I decided to break the news to my roomies and packed up my stuff. 

"Hasta La Vista (Way), Baby!"

Since having been back in Miami, I've been in contact with three different schools about substitute teaching. Interviewed and got my old job back at an After School Program. (So I'll be working full-time). I even received a message from one of my old babysitting gigs to make some side money. And I'm currently working at another of my old jobs until school starts. 
Word to the wise: always leave a job in good terms, you'll never know what may happen. 

I am very grateful to have been given the opportunity to work for the Disney Company -- yet, I feel incredibly BLESSED about making the decision to move back home.

"For He will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways." Psalm 91:11


Love, Ash.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Beach Babe

As my moving day approaches, I realized how much I'll miss living in Miami.

Oh, how I'll miss the authenticity of our Cuban cuisines, how I'll miss my friends and family, and most importantly how I'll miss the easy access to the beauty that is our Florida beaches. 

With that being said, these past few weeks I've been taking crazy advantage of the beaches that surround me -- even if that means going the extra (hundred) miles. 

For my friend's 21st birthday, we rented a boat for a couple of hours to cruise from North Bay Village all the way to Downtown Miami and back. We sipped on a few drinks while catching some rays, in hopes of a DJ Khaled jet-ski sighting. However, we were unsuccessful. But I did get good dosage of Vitamin D and plenty of post-worthy Instagram pics.

That same week was Cinco de Mayo. A Mexican holiday celebrating their victory against the French during the Battle of Puebla. Yet, another reason to grab a few brews and make my way to the beach with some friends. This time we hung out at Dania Beach. We rested our towels and snacked on some chips and watermelon. And of course, in holiday spirit, we had to get my favorite Mexican drink, Corrrrrrona. Some we even spiked and made Loaded Coronas by adding rum. We ended the night at my spot, Norman's, where we took some tequila shots, had a few margaritas -- all in the spirit of the holiday, of course.

The weekend after, I went to Bonita Beach with my parents and grandma. We spent the day at the beach relaxing and enjoying our Mother's Day weekend. I tried fish tacos for the first time at Doc's Beach House, a super cute restaurant/bar alongside the beach. After a half hour drive from the beach, we made it to our hotel in Naples. The next morning we got up pretty early to have a BBQ at the resort's pool.

The next day, I had a half day road trip with my friend, Marina. I had some business to take care in the Florida Keys which led us to this great spot with this amazing view -- check it out.

This was my view at lunch at Buzzards Roost in Key Largo. I had oysters and a chicken avocado sandwich that was to die for. Can't wait to go back!

Well, this was just a little taste of the fun adventures I've had prior to my move! Hope you enjoyed reading!

xoxo, Ash.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Love Ash's Day Off

It's been said that 'you are a product of the people you surround yourself with'

Truly I am so proud to say, I have the most hard-working group of friends out there. If there's one thing I'm certain of, it's that Miami kids sure do hustle HARD. With that being said, I've been juggling two jobs and going to school every day since August of 2015. While happy with the work ethic that I've established throughout my first years of "adulting", I have decided to make some changes and give myself somewhat of a break before my move to Orlando this summer.

Being in my 20s, living at home, and not paying many bills, I was living the good life but struggled to find a balance with everything that I had on my plate. So I put in a two-weeks notice at one of my jobs giving myself a more flexible schedule. While picking up more hours at my other job, I still managed to find time for myself to enjoy my last few weeks with my friends and family.

Here's what I did on my first REAL day off:

I scooped up a friend I hadn't seen in a really long while and we made our way to the beach. Somehow, even living in Miami, I managed to have a Vitamin D deficiency due to lack of sunlight [aka too much work]. So we grabbed a few coronas, laid out a towel on the sand and caught up with each other. It was such an amazing feeling to be back on the beach. Catching some rays and swimming amongst my sea critter friends sure helps get me regain my sanity.

Later on that day, we met up with two other friends and took a trip to the Food Trucks at North Bay Village. I got myself a "Big Daddy Sandwich" with pulled pork, mac n' cheese, and brisket [it was bomb]. For dessert I had a Birthday Cake flavored shaved ice [super yummy!] from the Bahama Bucks truck and they gave us complementary snowballs. SNOWBALLS. I even paid an extra dollar for two more snowballs and we were at war. Those dodgeball skills sure did come in handy, like they say "If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a (snow?) ball". Then we ate by the bay with the most beautiful, relaxing view of Downtown Miami at sundown. 

But the night wasn't over. Towards the end of the day, we met up with even more friends at the Awa Kava Lounge to wind down [or turn up, depending on who you ask]. We had some rounds of Kava and sat on the front porch. We all met some pretty eccentric characters that night [which made for interesting conversations]. And then played some competitive card games of "21" and "B.S".

Spending that entire day doing whatever I wanted, not worrying about school or work or being late to anything -- just simply going with the flow of the day, made me realize how much I really needed a day off. I had time to reflect on the little things in life that we don't appreciate on a daily basis. It's so important to get as much quality time with great friends and enjoy the dope hang out joints your city has to offer before getting too caught up in life.

"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."
- Ferris Bueller, 1986

Love, Ash.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Lippie Kit Love

As many of you dolls are already aware, Kylie Jenner's Lip Kit has been one of the hottest and most talked about cosmetic lines of 2016. Since the lip kit's release, it has sold out on her website, kyliecosmetics.com, each time within seconds. Sorry Kim, but it was Kylie who actually broke the internet. [fine, maybe just her own website.] Makeup-loving ladies (and fellas) have been scrimmaging on her website attempting to buy Kylie's fab matte lipstick line -- many have succeeded, while many more have failed. Most people have several tabs on their computers open just to get a hold of these lippies. Maybe there's a tactic, or maybe it's just pure luck in hopes that your computer doesn't crash, but nevertheless, it's become quite the mission.

For a while I've been trying to get my hands on one of these liner/lipstick combos but I never really dedicated the time to go on her website. With work and school and all, I didn't necessarily have the most time to spare fighting online over Kylie Jenner lipstick. But one day I decided to do what I do best and that's find gems on eBay.

**Now, you've gotta be careful when shopping on eBay, always verify the authenticity of the item, ask the seller as many questions as you'd like, make sure you read the fine print on any product you purchase, and personally, I always use PayPal for security purposes.**

So I was at one of my many jobs and I decided to go on eBay and see what I can do. So I started bidding on some of the lip kits. While on the kyliecosmetic.com website, each lip kit goes about $29, I was willing to spend the extra money to not deal with the mess she has going on her website. I won True Brown K ($32), Dolce K ($45), and Mary Jo K ($37). Some may say I overspent but I'm absolutely obsessed with my lip kits that came in perfect condition and look great!

The next purchases I'm looking into are Candy K, for another neutral everyday look, and Kourt K because to me, nothing's sexier than a dark purple lip for a night out. Recently Kylie also released her Gloss collection "Like Literally So Cute". Know what the glosses names are? You guessed it! Like. Literally. & So Cute... Maybe it's the valley girl in me, but I think those names are adorable. I wanna get the darkest shade of the glosses, 'Like', so I'll add that to my "I NEED IT" list.

**I just had an entire revelation and realized THIS is exactly what the Kylie Jenner Lip Kit smells like.**

As for my review on the lip kit, I think Kylie was right on the money when choosing her colors. The tones are absolutely gorgeous for each one and I can't wait to get the rest of the collection. The lip liner goes on really easy. The matte lipstick? It goes on as a liquid, which I love. [and it smells like meanest girl in 7th grade.] It doesn't come off as easily as MAC Matte Lipstick and lasts a decent amount even while eating or drinking. My only concern is that the lipstick does indeed dry up your lips, so I'd suggest putting on a lip balm prior to use. Also, since it dries up, reapplying has an annoying texture on your lips and feels as though it clumps up. Overall, I'd rate the Kylie Lip Kit an 8.5 out of 10. Now what she needs to do is add some lip-plumping formula to her kits to really give us the Kylie Jenner look. LOL. Well, thanks for reading! Till next time!


Love, Ash.

Monday, March 21, 2016

California Adventure

My first time traveling to the West Coast surely was a memorable one. 

I met my dad's paternal side of the family for the first time which was an incredible experience. So many people it was hard to keep up -- uncles, 2nd uncles, 2nd cousins, 3rd cousins, aunts, 2nd cousin's in law. [jeez] But I loved every single one of them and can't wait to be reunited again!

After our big family reunion, we loaded up the cars and took a trip to Original Tommy's Hamburgers, known for chili burgers. Not gonna lie, they were some pretty bomb burgers. 

The next day we took a trip to Olvera Street, the oldest part of Downtown Los Angeles. [aka El Pueblo de Los Angeles] [But I like to call it, Little Mexico]. It was definitely one of my favorite parts of the trip. We had an authentic Mexican breakfast at La Luz de Dia restaurant, where I had two carnitas tacos, refried beans, rice, and guacamole and chips. [BEST TORTILLAS EVER] The street of Little Mexico had vendors all up and down -- selling authentic Mexican EVERYTHING, pottery, bags, candy, dresses, ponchos and sombreros. I even got myself a little guitar to start up my mariachi band. We heard live music, had great food, and ended up trip to El Pueblo with a cheesy family picture.

Next we took a quick detour to take a look at the Griffith Observatory [where I was not impressed] but took a mediocre picture of me and the Hollywood sign.

After [lots of begging] we finally gathered up the group and made our way to Hollywood Blvd. which reminded us so much of Manhattan, we were practically obligated to getting some New York styled pizza. [oh yeahhh] I saw some funky little characters walking up the streets and gazed in awe at some of the celebrity stars, my personal favorite being, Sir Elton John [and my soon to be boss, DCP SHOUT OUT, Mickey Mouse] 

We then drove thru Rodeo Dr. and reached the absolutely gorgeous beaches of Santa Monica Pier, where I fell completely in love with California and caught the sunset [which made for some epic pictures]. Although it was freezing and I didn't go on any rides on the pier, I still enjoyed the view as we walked around. I got to see a sea lion in the water and my dad even bought me a cotton candy! [Thanks, Pa] 

On Day 3, we took a mini-roadtrip to Malibu beach were we saw some incredible mountains and not so much beach [thanks fog] But on our way there we passed some really impressive strawberry fields and some EXTREMELY hardworking Mexicans [SHOUT OUT TO MY FELLOW LATINOS #BernieSanders2016] We even passed by a little fruit stand and bought some! Look, how gorgeous!

After coming back from Malibu, we met up with the rest of our extended family in Guadalajara Grill [clearly, we love Mexican food] we heard some mariachis and my grandma couldn't have been any happier. 

On our last day in Cali, we packed our things in our rental van, checked out of our room, and took a trip to the San Pedro Seafood Market. Although it was packed with people all over the place, we somehow found outdoor tables for the 10 of us. We made a super long line but at the end of it all we had our huge shrimp platter, dozen oysters [mostly for me], beers and horchata, and my 2nd uncle even bought us each our own [big ass] crab. It was awesome. 

Finally, we drove back to my great grandma's house to have everyone meet up so we could say our last goodbye's [for now]. Overall, it was an amazing experience to travel and see new places but most importantly, to meet my family who I adore so dearly!

Till next time, y'all!


Love, Ash.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Application and Acceptance

Two years ago. After my first semester in college I applied for the Disney College Program only to get a NLIC (No longer in consideration) soon after. I thought to myself, "Well dang." and it seemed really impossible to get in. I continued with my life -- school, work, social life. I never really pondered on it. Until this past January, something got me to log onto the website, got me to fill out an application, and send it again for round 2.

Jan 12. I applied for the DCP. Soon after that same day I got an email, which I assumed was another NLIC. That instead turned out to be a Web-Based Interview [oh, thank God]

Jan 13. The following day, I received another email. [NLIC? Nope!] It was an email to schedule my Phone Interview! [OKAY, COOL]. This was starting to get really exciting! I didn't even get nearly this far last time I had applied! So I login online, check out the available times, schedule it for a time I knew I'd be alone with at least 30 minutes to talk, and wrote it down in my planner.

Jan 21. Around 9:30 PM on a Wednesday night, I anxiously awaited my phone call and when it finally came in, I'm not gonna lie, I was pretty nervous.
**Sidenote: I had done some research prior to my call as to see what kind of questions they'd ask. It was pretty basic questions about myself, my work/school experience, how I'd react in scenarios, and why I chose primarily the role I did [I chose Attractions, cause duh]
My interview when on for about 20ish minutes and it went pretty well. The only tip I'd give: BE YOURSELF. Remember, it's Disney. So try your best to show off your best and bubbly personality that I'm sure you have. She told me that all decisions would be finalized by April 15th, which for some reason I assumed that would be when I'd find out. [Wrong!] Since I assumed I had a long wait to find out, I kinda forgot about it to be honest.

Feb 24. I was at work minding my business, y'know, working and all. I checked my phone for a second and saw an email from Disney! Its header read: "Disney College Program - Congratulations!" And when I tell you I had a heart attack, I'm not kidding [ok. yes, I am]. So I opened it up without getting my hopes up too high. But lo and behold, it surely was an emailing offering me a position for the DCP! [agggghhhhh] I was so happy. 

The Letter. So I had to click on a link to read the actual letter of offering. It congratulated me again, told me my role (Attractions), how much $ they were offering me hourly, and the program offered [I got Fall Advantage 2016]

Moment of Truth. I was so ecstatic I hadn't even realized they offered me Fall Advantage... That meant I was leaving in May/June rather than August like I had anticipated (I had a lot of things planned for the Summer). But I texted a few friends, called my mom, and two days (they give you 7 days to accept or deny) after a lot of consideration, I ACCEPTED the offer!

Feb 26. "Welcome to the Disney College Program Team!" It was official, y'all! I accepted the offer, paid my fees ($300 for housing events and first few weeks of housing), and picked my date of arrival (June 13th) [92 days from today, LOL].

So since then it's pretty much just been a waiting game from now till June. But I'll make the best of it. Thanks for reading!


Love, Ash.

About Me

Greetings Dolls,

My name is Ashley Nicole. I am a twenty-one year old college student from Miami Beach, FL. Just living, learning, and loving the ways of life! My Monday through Friday's are spent working at two different schools with K-8 students and Special Needs high schoolers. So pretty much my days are filled with learning, laughter, and a ton DIY projects. On my time off, I like to enjoy what life has to offer -- great food and travel. I also love all lady-like so I'll be sharing my favorite beauty tips including makeup, nail polish, and occasionally fashion. So hope you enjoy reading my blog!


Love, Ash.