It is no secret that I am a huge Disney fan. I grew up watching every princess movie and I was every princess for Halloween. When it was announced that there was going to be a live action Beauty and the Beast movie made, I was so ecstatic. When I found out Emma Watson would be Belle I became much more ecstatic. I am huge fan of hers and all that she does to help the environment and her part in the fight for women’s equality. So, my boyfriend took me to see Beauty and the Beast the day it came out and spoiler: I loved it so much, I went to see it again with my mom and little brother about a week later!
Let’s talk about the singing first and address what everyone was worried about. I thought Emma played Belle perfectly and as a trained vocalist I appreciated her voice for what it was and it’s okay that it wasn’t this outstanding and amazing voice. I thought her voice fit the character phenomenally and it made the movie special to me. Josh Gad as usual is the spotlight stealer with his amazing voice and his amazing acting skills. I liked his LeFou better than the animated version’s. My favorite song was definitely Gaston, it was so fun especially with the musical interlude and I admit I listen to it on repeat on my way to school sometimes. I did feel like maybe there was one or two songs that just seemed extra but it didn’t ruin the movie for me, it was still very lovely.
The movie flowed tremendously adding bits and pieces to the film to bridge gaps in the animated classic. I personally loved the additions to the film scene wise and I thought it helped the movie stand alone and separate itself from a “revival” of the animated movie. I enjoyed every aspect of this movie and I cried- both times- because of how amazing it was and how magical it felt. I was so moved by how wonderful the film was that it reminded me how much I loved this movie as a kid and how much I looked up to Belle and all the princesses for the strengths that they show. Belle was so smart and so independent and I alway find myself wanting to be as smart and independent as Belle, even now.
I completely recommend seeing this movie if you can still see it in theaters but if not you should definitely get it on DVD or Netflix and watch it and enjoy something truly wonderful. Through all the skepticism about this movie it honestly was a fantastic movie.
So Lent has come and gone and that means my soda ban has come and gone. I will say that going those 6 weeks actually helped me cut the habit of having to have at least 4 glasses of soda a day and I do feel healthier. This did not help me with weight gain or loss nor did it contribute to energy levels and that is probably due to the fact that I am a college student who is currently in the final weeks of the semester and dealing with all the stresses and late night studying that goes with being a college student during finals. However, I have only had soda a total of 3 times since being able to drink it again and one of those times I ended up getting insanely sick to my stomach and I have a feeling that the diet soda I had was to blame. The other times I just felt bad about myself after drinking it.
I want to encourage people to try and quit things that are harmful to you like drinking soda. I have been trying to live a healthier and clean life because of this and it’s working so even though its not easy at first and there were days I wanted to crack, I have to say that it feels good to quit doing something I know isn’t good for me.
There is one more week left of Lent and that means one more week that I have to give up soda. I gained like 4 pounds but I highly doubt that was due to the seltzer I’m drinking in place of soda and mostly due to the fact that it’s Girl Scout Cookie season and my grandma gave me three boxes of Thin Mints. Everyone is shocked I lasted this long especially going to the movies twice and down to Atlantic City last weekend. It was really tough in AC to be at dinner and drink seltzer when my friends all had soda that looked so sweet and wonderful and it made me so sad. I feel good, I feel like I detoxed my body but I still miss soda. My energy levels are all over the place but that’s definitely due to my semester in school than my lack of soda.
I have one week left and then we will see if I even can drink soda after these 6 weeks.
Alright, we are officially at the halfway point! I have done 3 weeks of no soda and it’s a struggle. I almost cracked today when I saw a can of Pepsi and I quickly grabbed a water and ran away from the fridge. Let’s see some points I have noticed since quitting soda outright:
- I haven’t really lost weight, I’m at the same weight as last week.
- Energy levels are a little different I’m not as tired as I always feel, I’m skeptical that it has anything to do with soda.
- I feel overall healthier, I always feel bad after drinking soda, especially since I used to drink soda at 9 am which is terrible. Now I feel lighter and less guilty.
- I think my teeth are healthier, they don’t hurt like they used to when I would always drink soda.
So as of week 3, I am less tired, same weight as last week, energy levels are higher and I feel healthier so it looks like this has been a good idea! Until next week!
Another week, another update! It’s becoming easier to not want soda although the last couple of days I really just wanted to grab a glass and chug it as fast as I could. My energy levels are not doing anything, I am still tired all the time and that’s probably because I have a lot of stuff going on for school. I lost 2 pounds but idk if that really has anything to do with the soda. Cris on the other hand cracked and got fast food and is now just focusing on not drinking soda which he’s been doing really well with. We went to see Beauty and the Beast and instead of getting me a soda he got me a slushy which was really cute of him because he knows I love popcorn and soda. The slushy was a really nice alternative.
Next week will be week 3 we will officially be halfway done with Lent!
So I posted a little over a week ago that for Lent I was giving up soda and Cris was giving up fast food. Here’s an update on how we’re doing:
- I haven’t had any cravings for soda, I just envy the people drinking it around me
- I substituted soda for grape juice, seltzer, or water
- Cris is fine, just always hungry while he works because fast food is his only option on the road.
- I gained a pound since giving up soda
- My energy levels have decreased significantly due to either the lack of sugar or caffeine
It’s not going horribly but this is definitely something hard to do especially since I have been drinking soda for a very long time. I’ll update again next week, it should be interesting, we’re going to a movie (who can have popcorn without soda?!?!)
March 1st marked the first day of Lent for those who practice the Catholic faith. We’re supposed to give up something we love for 40 days. Well, every year I give something up and it’s always something I am accustomed to either eating or drinking or doing every single day and I always crack about a week in.
I drink soda like no one’s business. I drink maybe 5 glasses a day, my drink of choice when I’m out is Rum and Coke. I keep getting lectured by everyone around me about how bad soda is and how I shouldn’t drink it like I do anymore because it’s going to kill me and I haven’t had any motivation to give it up until now.
Not only will I be giving up soda for Lent (Cris is giving up soda and also fast food) but I want to see if weight and also energy is tied directly to soda consumption. Each week I will check in about how the no soda thing is going for me and Cris’ no fast food or soda is going for him and also if I noticed any weight loss between the two of us. I’m also going to track my energy levels throughout the week and make a final conclusion based on this little Lent experiment.
It’s day 2, I haven’t craved soda like I usually do, I’ve been drinking lots of water and iced tea and this morning I woke up with super oily skin so I need to do a face mask tomorrow to get that under control. Other than the oily skin, my energy levels are pretty much the same and I haven’t had any kind of caffeine withdrawal yet. We’ll see how the week goes!
So it’s the second day of our adventure in the city, pretending to be tourists(if you’d like to see our first day you can click here). We wake up, I run to the Starbucks in the lobby and we decide to go to Madam Tussauds. At the time that we went it wasn’t crowded but I have to believe that it would be crowded during the later afternoon and we went around 11 am. That being said, we had so much fun there we spent about 2 hours just taking our time and taking pictures and having loads of fun. If you want to see my full review of that trip to Madam Tussauds just click here. After our trip to Madam Tussauds we walked to Halal Guys cart on 53rd and Broadway. This was my first time ever having halal food so I was excited and it was super yummy. We actually ate the food back in the hotel room but on the way back we stopped into this little bakery called the Buttercup Bakeshop. Now, for anyone who loves the show How I Met Your Mother, this name would resonate with you as a familiar one. That’s because it is. Buttercup Bakery is the name of a bakery that was run by one of Ted’s girlfriends. Upon seeing the name I knew I had to step in and see what it was like and the inside look very similar to what they showed the inside of the fictional bakery in the show to look like. Now I don’t know if there is a real or definite connection BUT when I was doing research for throwing my little brother a How I Met Your Mother themed 21st birthday party, this bakery was what I remember finding out existed. So naturally I had to taste the cake. The pieces were beyond huge, 2 people couldn’t finish one slice and the cake itself was super creamy and moist and wonderful. I would definitely recommend.
We were eating in our room when Housekeeping showed up and we had to leave the room for a while so we went to the lounge by the lobby and just relaxed for about 35-45 minutes and we looked up at how extremely high the entire hotel is, and we tried to guess how many rooms could possibly be in this hotel we did this for a while before I got bored and wanted to go back to the room. Housekeeping was gone and we took a little nap before trying to figure out where we wanted to go for dinner and whether Ripley’s would be before or after that.
Look at how high up this building goes!!
So we decided that we were going to go to Ripley’s and then go get dinner to go at Bubba Gump’s. We also made another stop at the Hershey store because I needed a special type of chocolate for our Valentines Day dinner and they carried it. So we went to Ripley’s and we had fun, I think Cris enjoyed it more than I did. If you would like to see our review on Ripley’s click here. After Ripley’s we went to Bubba Gump’s and order shrimp and calamari to go and went back to the room. We finished the cake slices we bought earlier and started to pack up to go home the next day. All in all our weekend of being tourists in Times Square and enjoying our time together was a complete success. We’re already dreaming of going back to The View for summer’s restaurant week, and we’re trying to figure out where our next adventure is going to take us.
February 14th officially marks our first year together! While I was content with just a nice dinner or a nice present, Cris said my gift can be a weekend getaway in a hotel I have always wanted to stay at in the city, including dinner and fun attractions throughout our weekend there. I instantly said Marriott Marquis in Times Square. I have always wanted to stay in that hotel and be right in the center of all the touristy fun. So we booked the hotel which was extremely overpriced, and decided to plan out our weekend.
February 10-12th we were going to be tourists in our own city. I couldn’t be more excited. We took the subway in since parking at the hotel costs $90.00 and the train costs $2.75. No brainer there, except when we were going back home that Sunday, we were contemplating if taking the car would have been smarter because the subways were all kinds of messed up. Anyways, we got to the hotel around 2 pm and it felt so great to be checking in to this hotel.
Our room was ready, we had a lovely king bed room on the 14th floor. I was so excited to unpack, it’s one of my favorite parts of a trip. I thought the room was spacious for 2 people, cramped for 4 which it could fit if you used the pull out bed. For us though it felt like a little apartment with a good amount of space for our stuff.
The bed itself wasn’t super comfy but the sheets were so soft and cuddly it was like I was surrounded by clouds when I was sleeping. We unpacked and I wanted to take a walk to this camera store on 9th ave and 34th street. To our dismay, the store was closed but we managed to stop at a deli and get snacks for down time and a liquor store for champagne. It would not be a weekend adventure for us without champagne! Our first night we really spent time exploring the hotel and then had our lovely dinner at The View. We took advantage of Restaurant Week and had one of the greatest meals ever. If you would like to see our review of The View you can find that here. We walked around our hotel after and found all the ballrooms for weddings and then also found this walkway with a wonderful view of Times Square. I loved looking out on the overlook, it was actually peaceful.
We changed into normal clothes and took a walk to the Hershey store and the M&M World store. We felt that M&M world was outrageously overpriced and overheated for a chocolate store where as Hershey was too small but a much better experience. It was an hour before it closed so the crowd level in both stores were slim to none. We were tired so we went to bed around 12:30 am and we knew that the next day was going to be very busy! Our first night was a complete success!
As I mentioned once, I love museums. All types. So naturally, when we went to have our weekend in Times Square we also decided a trip to Ripley’s Believe It or Not Odditorium was on our list of things we wanted to do. I have been and Cris hasn’t so he was interested in all the weird things they have there and it very rarely changes so I was a bit bored with it. If it’s your first time though, you are going to really have fun.
Ripley’s Tickets go for $23.96 and we got our tickets for $21.00 through our friend. The museum is 2 floors and we really spent time in there but you could easily do this in an hour. We spent about 2 hours in there just really having fun and looking at everything. The first floor had some odd things, like the heaviest person ever, tallest man in the world, the weird side show people etc.
Tallest Man in the world
Train made out of matches
When you go upstairs there are a series of rooms with all kinds of weird things inside.The best room was the room with the Moose Head. I had a lot of fun in that room and it was probably the most fun to sit around in. The worst rooms was the one with the cockroaches and the torture room. These rooms were all about creepy bugs and the different kinds of torture devices that were used in the olden days. Cris enjoyed the torture room and spent a lot of time in here because it was fascinating to him what the methods of punishment were in different times. It was a form of punishment to me, to have to be in that room for longer than 5 minutes. But there was a funny photo op in that room which makes my displeasure worth it.
Heads in a jar
As you make your way through all of the rooms you get to the black hole which is such a mind screwing experience. You walk through and you feel like you’re flipping upside down. It’s the coolest part of the entire museum. Cris went through like 5 times and I was only able to go through once. After the black hole there’s only a few things left to see and their gift shop is under construction so it get’s bland after.
I have been to another Ripley’s in LA and I have to say the NYC one is a lot better! If you have already been to Ripley’s in NYC then you may not want to go again because things don’t really change but if you have never been I definitely recommend this as something you should see. All the things they talk about are real so you may just learn a thing or two!