Honey, I Rose Up From the Dead, I Do It All the Time | Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights 29

Ah, spooky season.

I’ve always had a complicated relationship with Halloween time, and especially Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights event. Being a horror baby used to be part of how I described myself, but with this being my 5th consecutive year attending HHN, I can say that I have officially evolved into a ~scream queen~.




Even the thought of this event used to genuinely terrify me. I was the type of person that had to change the channel when even a preview of a scary movie came on (tbh sometimes I still do, it’s an ongoing evolution). The idea of placing myself in a very realistic horror setting, sometimes recreating those exact films that frightened me so much, felt like it was a bit too far out of my comfort zone.

It definitely took a few seasons for me to learn, adjust, and adapt (hellooooo EARPLUGS) to the incredible environment that Universal creates, but this has turned into something that I have found myself looking forward to, something that I crave, especially on Monday and Tuesday nights when the park takes a break from the slaughter.

Having friends to hold onto always helps. Especially when its @abbycorkins.



The coolest part of getting to go to HHN year after year is that it’s COMPLETELY different every single season. Ten entirely new haunted houses, and five completely unique scare zones, so you never get the same experience. My favorites this year are the Ghostbusters house (if you’re a fan of the movie, this is SO well done), and the neon lights of the Anarchade scare zone really make an impression at the entrance.



Universal has been D-I-E-ing to meet you.

While I am super excited about Christmas season at Universal Orlando (where I truly thrive to be honest), I am really looking forward to next year’s Horror Nights event. It will be the 30th anniversary, so I’m expecting exceptional frights, and I can’t wait to hear  the sound of screams again (mine and everyone else’s.)

Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights really is the best, most elaborate and most frightfully themed Halloween event in all of the Orlando area theme parks. Whether you are a thrill-seeking Halloween fiend or lean more towards the scaredy-cat end of the spectrum, HHN is a can’t-miss event, and while Universal will do their best to make it seem otherwise, the odds of survival are pretty good.

CLICK HERE for all of your Universal Orlando ticketing needs, and I’ll see you out there!

til next time,



P.S. this post was sponsored by BestofOrlando.com, but I wouldn’t send you out there if I didn’t actually love this event, I promise.

Accio FUN! | A Day Around the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando

I solemnly swear that I am up to no good…


Its no secret around here that theme parks are my favorite places to spend my time, and that excitement is always even more so enhanced when I get to live out the fandom fantasies inspired by all of my favorite IPs (that’s Intellectual Property for those of you not ~in the know~) and stories that I grew up imagining being a part of.

Universal Orlando has created one of the most well-themed, immersive, magical (yes I went there) places in Central Florida with the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. The Wizarding World is currently spread out into two separate themed lands, one in each of Universal’s current theme parks; Hogsmeade in Universal’s Islands of Adventure, and Diagon Alley in Universal Studios Florida. The lands are connected by the Hogwarts Express, and if you think I didn’t absolutely bawl my eyes out the first time I boarded the train from the Kings Cross station, you don’t know me at all. It looks exactly the same as it does in the films, the only thing it’s missing is the Trolley Witch, so you’ll have to buy your pumpkin pasties, cauldron cakes, and chocolate frogs from Honeydukes once you arrive in Hogsmeade. I still make the trip out to Universal Orlando every year on September 1st to ride the train for the official first day of school at Hogwarts. I graduated a while ago, but this Ravenclaw prefect still makes sure I’m available to help any lost first years find their way to the Astronomy Tower common room.




A visit to Hogsmeade is never complete without a stop at the Three Broomsticks bar for a Butterbeer. Butterbeer is available in three different variations; Frozen and Cold are on tap all year round, with a Hot version offered seasonally in the traditional “colder” months (even though in Central Florida we don’t experience much of a temperature change.)


My hierarchy of Butterbeers is Cold at a very firm #1, closely followed by Hot, with Frozen coming in dead last. I am extremely passionate about my Butterbeer opinions, when I read the books I always imagined it having come kind of carbonation, which is how the Cold is served. You also don’t get a straw with the Cold, making the Butterbeer foam mustache an inevitable side effect. Cold is definitely, in my not-so-humble opinion, the superior way to drink your Butterbeer.

The Hot Butterbeer comes in a slightly smaller serving size than the Cold and the Frozen, but its delightfully warm and sweet on the rare cool days we get here, and when the temperatures dip below 70°, its an even better choice than a Hot-Air Charm to warm your hands.

The Frozen is my absolute least favorite. It’s a blended ice slush, so it tastes watered down to me, and since its served with a straw, you don’t get to taste as much of the sweet foam that tops it. But hey, the Imperius Curse is still an Unforgivable Curse, so order what you want, to each their own.



Okay, now time for the newest addition to the Wizarding World, Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure! Yes, that’s a lot of name, but trust me, its also a lot of attraction.

This is, by far, the best attraction I have ever experienced. Hagrid’s is a roller coaster, with several launches, a drop track, and show scenes with practical sets and animatronics, and you guys, it BLEW MY MIND. I went into this experience with sky high expectations because I had heard nothing but rave reviews, and I was honestly expecting to be let down. I didn’t think it was possible, but Hagrid’s exceeded and went above and beyond every hope I had for it. I was giggling, screaming, and grinning from ear to extendable ear from the first launch, til well past I unloaded off of my motorbike back into the Wizarding World. The attraction has consistently had a very lengthy wait (with a significant amount of downtimes), but it was worth every minute of the 100 minutes I waited, and I would definitely recommend not skipping this ride on your next visit.



No matter how high the temperatures soar in the heat of the summer, the snow in Hogsmeade never melts. It’s almost like MAGIC.




After catching the Hogwarts Express from Hogsmeade to Diagon Alley, it was time for more treats, and my second Butterbeer of the day (no shame from me, and no judgement from you). This Butterbeer produced a much better mustache as well, so hashtag worth it.




While Cold Butterbeer is definitely my favorite Wizarding World treat overall, the ice cream from Florean Fortescue’s is a very close second. There are a few flavors here that are outside the box of your usual ice cream parlor menu, like Clotted Cream, Chocolate Chili, and my absolute favorite, Earl Grey and Lavender. You can also get Butterbeer flavored soft serve here as well, but I’ll say it again, the Cold Butterbeer is still the best way to consume this flavor, and if you skip out on the Earl Grey and Lavender, you’re only doing yourself a disservice.





I already can’t wait for my next trip to the Universal Orlando Resort, and the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. If you’ve been putting off your next visit, and haven’t passed your Apparition test yet and still need a ticket, click here for all of your Universal Orlando admission options, but make sure you get a Park-to-Park ticket to be able to travel to both of the Wizarding Worlds on the Hogwarts Express!

I’ll be over here dwelling on dreams, but not forgetting to live at the same time, and I’ll see you at King’s Cross on September 1st for the first day of school!

Til next time, because this prefect is still on summer holiday,

Thanks for staying with me until the very end,


NOTE: This post was sponsored by BestofOrlando.com. Check out some of my other pieces I’ve done with them here!


I Know Places | The Alfond Inn

Living in the Central Florida area, it’s really easy to fall into life revolving around the theme park bubble. At least, for me it has been. I moved here from Tennessee in 2012 to pursue a dream of working for the theme parks, and I did. I spent 5 years at Disney and a year and half at Universal, and in that whole time, I didn’t really venture or explore too much outside of the immersive, fantasy worlds that felt like my backyard.

By doing so, I was really selling myself short on all that Orlando and the surrounding area has to offer. Since I’ve started branching out, one of the places that has really captured my heart is The Alfond Inn in Winter Park, Florida.


Winter Park is a cute little suburban city, about 30 minutes northeast of Orlando. Located in the heart of Winter Park is Park Avenue, a street lined with boutiques and dining offerings, with a park on the opposite side, that you can often find festivals, live music, or a Farmer’s Market every Saturday.

On all of my frequent visits to Park Avenue, I always walked or drove past The Alfond Inn, and I thought it would be the perfect place for a weekend getaway still close to Orlando, but with the feel of being a world away from the bustling theme park hub. A vacation from your vacation, if you will.




One of the things that really drew me to The Alfond is the generous collection of contemporary, modern art that lines the walls of the lobby, as well as the four floors above of this 112-room boutique hotel. It gives off just as much of an art museum vibe as it does that of a luxury resort. The collection of art is a constant work in progress, with pieces rotating in and out, but always with a binding narrative of critical thinking, literacy, enlarging one’s perspective, understanding other cultures and traditions, and language.






IMG_3724 copy


My life mantra, tbh.





After we checked in and got settled into our room, Chelsea and I took the one block walk over to Park Avenue for dinner at one of my favorite go-to restaurants on the street, Prato.



This was the first time I’d ever ordered the potato gnocchi at Prato, and it’s now officially on the short list of my favorite foods. SO GOOD.


Dessert is an integral part of every meal for me, and even more so on vacation (hashtag treat yo’ self), therefore a stop by Kilwin’s on the walk back to The Alfond was a must. Chels and I were originally going to share one cone, but it just so happened to be Waffle Cone Wednesday when we went, which meant that ice cream in a waffle cone was buy one, get one free, so hey, when in Rome.

Chelsea got Blueberry waffle cone, and I stuck with one of my favorites, Pistachio.

Back at The Alfond, we hit the bar for a nightcap before settling into bed. I forwent my usual order of an Old Fashioned in favor of one of the signature cocktails, The Distinguished Gentleman (I can’t help myself, I’m still a dark liquor girl), and Chelsea ordered the Park Ave Pearl.




Any distinguished gentlemen can feel free to buy me a drink at this bar any time. Contact info above. 😉






There’s something about waking up in a hotel bed that makes starting the day feel like you’re going on an adventure. An incredibly relaxing adventure that starts with a cup of tea on the balcony, but an adventure nonetheless.



On this morning’s agenda: brunch. The Alfond Inn is home to Hamilton’s Kitchen, a restaurant specializing in traditional southern fare with a modern twist. It’s an inviting space, with an open kitchen, indoor and outdoor seating, and mismatched chairs that create a rustic but polished feel.


Hamilton’s Kitchen Brunch is served every day from 7am-2pm. I consider myself somewhat of a connoisseur of any and all Eggs Benedict, so as soon as I saw Cured Salmon Eggs Benedict on the menu, I read no further, closed my menu and was ready to order.

It came with a choice of side, and I will never not choose bacon. Bacon is bae.


This dish did not disappoint, in any way. I’ve had a lot of Eggs Benedict in my life, but these, topped with the cured salmon cake, rank pretty high up the list. 10/10, would order again. Chelsea went with Avocado Toast. She ate all four pieces, so its safe to assume she enjoyed it (she didn’t share, I wouldn’t know).




Our room was the balcony to the furthest right, so we had a beautiful view of this courtyard.




The Alfond Inn is one of my new favorite places in Central Florida, and I already can’t wait to go back (especially since while I was writing this article, I discovered the dessert menu for Hamilton’s Kitchen had a Macallan 12yr Butterscotch Pudding on it, gonna need that ASAP).

Catch me in that conservatory writing my next blog post.


Til next time,




some photography provided by Faison Anne Photography.


Peace and Love… Sucks.

You can tell me when its over, if the high was worth the pain…


Being in love has always been my favorite part of living life. It’s never been something that I have wanted to or let define me, but the time that I have spent happily in love has always shined a little brighter and made every day a little more special. But allowing yourself to fall deeply, madly, wholeheartedly in love with another person comes with its own set of risks, and if you’ve ever suffered a breakup that wasn’t your decision, you know exactly what I’m talking about. If you haven’t, there really aren’t words or phrases to truly convey the intense feelings of soul crushing loss of this person that you trusted your heart, your secrets, your insecurities, your vulnerabilities with. The embarrassment that you let this person in and it was all for nothing. The humiliation of the fact that you had introduced this person to everyone in your life and now everyone knows that it didn’t work out. The realization that all of these plans that you had made for a specific version of the future now no longer exist. The feeling of being haunted by memories spent with this person and the what ifs of what life would be like in this moment if that person hadn’t left your life. All of these things happen when you get your heart broken, and you walk around feeling like time is moving in slow motion and you have an open wound that only you can see and feel.

He loves me, he loves me not

I have never been the type of person to have a lot of acquaintances or friends, my circle has always been very small. But the people that are in my life, I love intensely, fiercely, and without conditions. I don’t open up to many people, but the ones that I do, I give my whole heart to. The metaphor that makes the most sense to me about this phenomenon is that loving someone is giving them a loaded gun that works only on you, and trusting them not to pull the trigger.

I’ve had the trigger pulled on me twice.

You’d think that having to endure that pain once, much less twice, would be enough to make anyone swear off loving, liking, or letting another person in ever again. But I think, for me, its just taught me the lesson of the consequences of this kind of deep love. That being able to love someone so intensely can also lead to intense pain. That the highest highs can be followed by the lowest of lows. Which makes the ability of being able to open yourself up to being vulnerable with someone new all the more special, because you know exactly what it could cost you, but you do it anyway, because the chance of finding something real is always worth the risk.


My broken experiences with love have not broken the way I feel about it or my outlook towards love. I’ve learned so much about myself and what I want and what is important to me and what I have to offer someone else in a relationship. Going through the pain of losing what I had has only made me feel like I have leveled up and evolved into an even stronger and better version of myself. I’m changed and different than who I was before, but in the best way that makes me so excited about the future. Yes, love can suck sometimes, BUT its also one of the most wonderful things we get to experience as humans.

I have been hurt, but that hurt has had a part of making me into the woman currently writing these words. I’ve never been more unapologetically myself, I love myself more than I ever have before, and I’ve never been more excited about what comes next.

Beginnings always hide themselves in ends. 



Shop the Harveys Valentine’s Day collection, including my Love Sucks bag, here.
Taco Bell has always been a true and constant love and has never let me down.


Wishing you all of the love and happiness and joy that I know is coming for you if you don’t have it already,





National Penguin Day | Laguna Breakfast at the DoubleTree Orlando at SeaWorld

Happy (belated) National Penguin Day!

Penguins have long been my favorite animal, ever since my grandmother started wrapping my Christmas presents exclusively in penguin wrapping paper. I saw March of the Penguins in theaters twice, and I own it on DVD. I’m committed, you guys.

So when the DoubleTree Orlando at SeaWorld Resort invited me for breakfast to celebrate National Penguin Day, this opportunity was right up my alley.

all photography by @faisonanne

DoubleTree hotels are known for their complimentary chocolate chip cookies, which honestly, they’ve already won me over with that alone. This was my first time on the DoubleTree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld property, and it is a beautiful resort, boasting 28 acres of lush landscaping, and located right across from SeaWorld, and within minutes of the rest of the Orlando area theme parks.

Our character breakfast was at the resort’s table service restaurant, Laguna.




Laguna is a full service restaurant, serving all day, with different menus for breakfastlunch, and dinner. I was thoroughly impressed with their breakfast options. They offer both a breakfast buffet full of the usual suspects of cereals, pastries,  and made-to-order eggs and omelets, as well as a few specialty dishes available à la carte.

Faison chose the breakfast buffet, and treated herself to some absolutely delicious strawberry pancakes with chantilly cream (which I totally stole a bite of, #sorrynotsorry).


I went with my all-time favorite breakfast dish, eggs benedict, which came accompanied with asparagus and breakfast potatoes, and I was in HEAVEN. Laguna’s version of the dish definitely lived up to my expectations, and I consider myself somewhat of a connoisseur of eggs benedict, so my expectations were HIGH.



Now, the reason that we were all here today, PENGUINS. January 20th is National Penguin Day, and as far as I’m concerned, should be a national holiday. SeaWorld’s resident Penguin came over to Laguna to kick off his holiday and celebrate with us at breakfast!






Clearly, I was completely in my element and I made a new best friend.

Any day that starts off with a well done plate of eggs benedict and a hug from a penguin is going to go down as a great day in my book.

Thank you so much to the DoubleTree resort for inviting me for this experience! If you’re interested in exploring the resort for yourself, click here for more info, and let me know if you find any other gems of experiences here!

Believe it or not, this was just ONE of the multiple penguin sweaters in my closet. The pants can be found at Red Dress.


Happy National Penguin day everyone!

Til next time,



I was Home for Christmas | 2018 Holiday Season at Walt Disney World

Happy new year everyone! Welcome to 2019, a time of new beginnings and fresh starts. I’m sad that another holiday season has come to an end, but before the Christmas decorations start to come down, I wanted to take one more look back at the Walt Disney World parks dressed up with their extra magic.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom

kristyne Red Dress-9579
Sweater and skirt from Red Dress Boutique


kristyne Red Dress-9599


kristyne Red Dress-9631


kristyne Red Dress-9649

kristyne Red Dress-9639

kristyne Red Dress-9602



Sweater and pants from Red Dress Boutique


Christmas tree bag from Harveys



Magic Kingdom

Coat from Red Dress Boutique
Bag from Harveys
Dress from Hell Bunny


Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Dress and cardigan from Red Dress Boutique







Aaaaand that’s a wrap on the holiday magic at the Disney Parks last year. Thanks for sticking with me on this tour, I already can’t wait for Christmas in 2019.

If you already miss the joy of the season and you’re looking to reminisce, check out these posts I did last year to celebrate!

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party Treat Guide

A Frozen Holiday Wish

A Christmas Tour Through Toy Story Land

New Year’s Eve at WDW Guide

I hope you have the absolute best start to one of your best years yet!

Til next time,






Letters to Santa from Magic Kingdom | Say More Cards

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…

You guys! It’s finally the most wonderful time of the year! The Christmas season is my absolute favorite time of the year, and one of the best ways to spread the spirit of the season is sending and recieving Christmas cards!

Kristyne holiday card disney-8493

Kristyne holiday card disney-8507

If you’ve ever visited the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World, I’m sure you’ve walked right past the U.S. Mailboxes up and down Main Street many times before without giving them a second glance. BUT, these are fully functional United States Postal Service mailboxes, and you can drop in your letters and postcards to send to family and friends at home just the same as you can at your local post office, just with a little extra ~pixie dust~.

Kristyne holiday card disney-8267

Kristyne holiday card disney-8235

I know it’s still November, but for my first card of the season, I wanted to go ahead and get a head start on my Christmas list and send a letter to Santa with my picks and requests for this year.

Kristyne holiday card disney-8516-2

Now, I think I’ve been an especially good girl this year, and I really think I deserve everything on my list (especially that last item), so to make sure I catch Santa’s attention, I sent him a Say More card.

Kristyne holiday card disney-8284

What sets these cards apart from your average Christmas card, is that little code in the bottom corner of the inside. When you scan that Say More code with the camera on your phone, it brings up and plays a personalized video that is unique to that code, so you can literally say more than just a handwritten message. These cards are the perfect marriage between receiving an old-school piece of snail mail, with the modern technology of being able to attach a video that you recorded just for the recipient.

Kristyne holiday card disney-8444

Before you drop your letters off to post, make sure you stop by the Newsstand, which is located to the left of the Train Station right outside the entrance to Magic Kingdom. There you can purchase postage stamps for your letters or postcards, and they also have a stamp exclusive to Main Street, USA so everyone will know exactly where your card came from (which is half the fun of mailing something from Magic Kingdom, let’s be real).

Kristyne holiday card disney-8234

I’ve already mailed my card to Santa, but to make sure your card really stands out to Santa and everyone else on your list, check out Say More Cards and use code KRISTYNE25 for a discount on your order!

Kristyne holiday card disney-8501

Let me know if any of you need my address for a Christmas card!

Til next time,



P.S. This post was sponsered by Say More cards, but please trust I would never post or promote something that I did not whole-heartedly love! Happy Holidays!



National Pumpkin Day at Santa’s Christmas Tree Forest

Friday, October 26th is National Pumpkin Day, and there is no place I would rather celebrate than a Christmas Tree farm.

photos by Faison Anne Photography.

I’ve made it no secret that Halloween isn’t my most favorite season, and I basically just use it as a countdown until my favorite time of the year, Christmas. But there are a few traditions I can still embrace, and visiting a pumpkin patch is pretty high up the list.




When it came time for our pumpkin adventure, Faison, Chelsea, and I headed out to Eustis, Florida to visit Santa’s Christmas Tree Forest for their Lot of Pumpkins. Santa’s Forest really goes all out in their pumpkin offerings, with a very healthy selection of various sizes of pumpkins, ranging in price from $3-$12. They even have a carving station so you have the option of carving your pumpkin on site (which means you can leave the mess behind!). The $5 price of admission also includes a hay ride and their petting zoo as well!


My skirt and Chels’s dress are Hell Bunny Clothing.


Okay, now the pumpkins were fun and all, but the real reason that I was so drawn to this place is that its main product is CHRISTMAS TREES. I know, I know, I bet you’re absolutely shocked to discover that a place called Santa’s Christmas Tree Forest might specialize in Christmas trees, but I already cannot wait to head back once Christmas season starts to cut down my very own Christmas tree.



A Lot of Pumpkins is open until October 28th, and the Christmas festivities begin November 17th at Santa’s Christmas Tree Forest!

Happy Holidays, and I’ll see you at the Christmas tree farm!

Til next time,




The Best Mornings Are in Magic Kingdom

The Magic Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort is the most popular and most attended theme park in the world, and that is a fact that I don’t think anyone will find hard to believe the moment you walk through the gates. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the amount of people in the park, but my favorite way to beat the crowds and enjoy a quiet(er) time in the most magical place, is to get there EARLY.


There is something so magical and surreal about getting a coffee on Main Street, USA to kick off your morning. I’m lucky in that I get the opportunity to visit the parks quite often, so I don’t feel the need to rush off to the attractions. My favorite instead is having a leisurely stroll with a drink in hand, watching all of the people walk in and see the castle for the first time, and just feeling the magic of the beginning of a new day in the Magic Kingdom. Plus, it’s one of the shortest lines you’ll see at Starbucks all day.






I know its hard to be a morning person sometimes, and I don’t always have the best track record at making it out of bed before 9 (ask Faison and Chelsea), but the quiet magic of an MK morning is always worth it.

Click here to read more about the exclusive entertainment offerings in the early hours if you need more motivation to set that alarm.







Til next time,



Photos by Faison Anne Photography


What’s This? Harveys Nightmare Before Christmas Collection

What’s this? What’s this? There’s color everywhere!

With the arrival of October, the Halloween season is officially upon us, even though the Disney Parks have been celebrating since early August.  Halloween has never been one of my favorite holidays, I’ve always looked at it as more of a pit stop on the way to my favorite time of year, Christmas. But I think that’s why I have always had a soft spot for Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, because while it’s honestly more of a Halloween themed story, I appreciate that Jack can see and feel the wonder and magic that is Christmas time.

Photos by Faison Anne Photography

Now, just because Halloween isn’t my favorite, it doesn’t mean that I’m going to pass up an opportunity to celebrate it in style. My absolute favorite bag company, Harveys, released a collection inspired by The Nightmare Before Christmas, and gifted me a bag to make sure I could kidnap the Sandy Claws- er, go trick or treating with the most appropriate accessory.




The pumpkins are the same pattern featured on Lock, Shock, and Barrel’s trick or treating sack that they used to mistakenly kidnap the Easter Bunny, and then successfully kidnap “Sandy Claws”, so this bag is definitely the perfect accessory for some mischief. The style I’m carrying is the Mini Streamline Tote, and will exclusively be available in the Disney Parks. If you’re not planning on visiting before Halloween is over, Harveys has a larger version of this style available online.







Halloween might not be my season, but I do love a good theme, and Harveys ALWAYS delivers the perfect accessory. I am always so proud to carry a Harveys bag, you won’t find a better brand made and run by better people.

Til next time,