Category Archives: The Cubicle Escapee

Bucket List Accomplishment

I am really excited to cross another thing of my life list.

(Although I must admit every time I cross something off, another 5 things find themselves on my list)

Anyway, I finally made it to Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta or number 138 on my list.

After a very long day of driving, (I started driving at 8 am) we finally stopped at midnight on Friday with the plans on attending the fiesta the next morning. The hotel clerk was very nice to offer advice.

Be there at 5:30am.

I looked at my dad and said yeah right, we went to our room and went to bed.

We woke up at 6:30 am, ate breakfast, and drove about 15 minutes and saw sites like this…

We followed the traffic pattern, and got into line to get into the actual fiesta. I asked a cop where we can park, his response, I am sorry the parking lot is full, and we are not allowing any more in. It was 8am.

Maybe I should have listened to the nice hotel clerk.

So we drove around some more, and realized that people were just pulling off the side of the road and watching the balloons from their car. So we decided to do the same thing and we were still able to get some fun photos.

I would have loved to get into the actual festival and take pictures up close, but where we parked was just as great. We saw a lot of beautiful balloons, were able to get a ton of pictures and overall, it was still something I wanted to see and do.

My one piece of advice if you want to go, BE THERE AT 5:30 AM!

To see all my pictures from the fiesta visit my Facebook Page

until next time,


Getting Lost in “God knows Where” Missouri

After the whole Missouri Welcome Center fiasco, I should have known that my adventures were not over in fact it really was just the beginning.

Once we got back on the freeway, we double checked what exit we were supposed to look for it was about 50 miles down the road, so we started chatting about all the mysteries of the universe for what only seemed like a few minutes, when I was asked a very dreaded question…

“Umm, what exit were we supposed to take?”

Damn. I forgot we were supposed to watch for an exit. I looked at the directions that were sitting in my lap, took a deep breath and responded.

“Umm, an exit about 20 miles behind us”

The next part of the conversation, was not very PG, so I won’t repeat it, but once we realized we completely missed the exit, it was time to either turn around & back track or find a different route.

Which is where we “might” have messed up (it really depends on which one of us you ask)

We choose to take a different path. I quickly pulled out my trusty iPhone, and had it map a different route.

The new route…

Which had us take the next exit through the back roads and would circle us around to US-54 which was where we needed to be.

And according to my “trusty” I-phone, this was quicker than backtracking.

The road to nowhere has new meaning

One thing I did not anticipate? well when you are in the hills of Missouri… you may lose service.

Which is what happened in the middle of nowhere Missouri.

We were lost. Completely hopelessly lost.

Lucky for us, we had GPS, which bailed us out of this situation. It took us to a road that was closed, and had a giant detour.

the road to nowhere

I giggled about being lost, because those of you that have been in my life for a while, know I am the queen of lost. The driver of this adventure, was not giggling, so I really had to fight the urge to giggle, even though it was hilarious hearing the rants. AND I mean RANTS.


I really believe that sometimes,getting lost can be a good thing.

I have no clue where we were, but it was beautiful. The Midwest is a photographer’s dream. If I ever become a talented photographer with a better camera, I would love to go back and get pictures of the barns, buildings, rocks… all of it.

Started the fun “barn game”… You just yell barn when you see a barn

Here are the pics I snagged while being lost. I had to do something to keep myself from laughing at the crazy pissed off Midwesterner who was ranting at the wheel. (I did not want to have that fury directed at me for laughing)

I fell instantly in love with this bridge…
view from the passenger side
more passenger side views

the useless tower when it came to service, but clearly people live around here

I learned all about Casey’s

Want to know something funny? We would get lost again that evening, but it was dark, and being lost with no cell service,a lunatic GPS, and killer deer all over the damn place, was actually taxing on the nerves, so I didn’t get pics of that “lovely” experience and I may have joined in on the rants 😉 .

Until Next Time,



Note: This post was originally posted on my Texas Travel Girl blog, and thanks from a local named Ginny, she let me know I was in Miller County, MO! Thanks Ginny!

My Grand Entrance into Missouri

I am someone who every time I enter a state, I have to go to their welcome center. It is a must do for me.

Well for Missouri, it was MUST do.

Let me back up, I am a pretty healthy eater, 90% of the time, so when I decided to drink a milk shake and eat fast food in Oklahoma I should have known better, because it would later cause a mad dash to the Welcome Center.

me leaving the fast food place (who will remain nameless) happy…

I will spare all the details, because well they are personal, but needless to say this was NOT the way I wanted to enter the Show Me State.

2 miles felt like it was going to be forever… Seriously… We still had a mile? I am pretty sure I said that by this point I am glad I snagged this photo, because believe me I was not paying attention to the pretty cliff/rocks

and finally….

I made it in the nick of time, and overall I enjoyed the Welcome Center, and I again I was reminded why I do not eat fast food.

Overall the Welcome Center was colorful, interesting and friendly. The guy that helped me out was a doll.


afterwards, time for a classic Jen pose

Needless to say, in typical Jen fashion, this would not be the only “fiasco” I would encounter in Missouri, but the start of one long series of “unfortunate” events.

But to be honest… looking back on this weekend, I wouldn’t change a thing.

Magic Shots

I haven’t blogged about Disney in a while, because well writing about Disney makes me sad, as I am not at Disney and I am at work trapped in this cubicle for what feels like an eternity.

Anyway, yesterday I was asked about the “magic shots” at Disney, a co-worker of mine is currently planning a trip to Disney, and she was wondering how she could get them.

I explained that the minute she stepped into the park she needed to get a photo pass card, and every time you come to a photographer who is not on a tri-pod simply ask for magic shots. They will always say yes, if they have been trained to take these shots. I have only been told no once, but it was her first day and she had not been trained in the shots, but she immediately directed me to the next photographer to get the shot.

When I go to Disney, I always buy the photo pass CD, you get all of your shots, and then I make it a game to see how many different poses I can get on CD. It is pricey, but I normally get 300-500 pictures on the CD, which makes it worth it.

Yes I am that vain, one time I spent the entire day at Animal Kingdom going from photographer to photographer getting pictures, just for kicks. I managed to snag over 200, and ride rides and sit through Nemo. It can be done!

Anyway, here are a few I have snagged over the years, and I still have quite a few I want to get.

Some Magic Shots are only available at certain events ie, Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party, or specific parks, like Animal Kingdom has Simba.

Note: keep you eyes out for photographers that have props like a box, because they will almost always do Magic Shots (note the LOVE Tink!!!! )

Here are a few of my favorite Magic Shots I have gathered over the years. Most were taken on my last day of travel (which I am not dressed the cutest but hey I was at Disney world, does it matter?)

Tink @ The Magic Kingdom
Tink @ The Magic Kingdom, Main Street
Stitch out of a box in front of the entrance at Animal Kingdom (photographer will have a box to do this shot! )
same spot, they love when you get animated in the shots, so expect them to ask you to make faces!
Stitch at Hollywood Studio, near the hat, again they love when you play along!
Balloons, always fun!
Minnie @ Hollywood Studios

Stitch @ Hollywood Studios
Hitchhiking Ghost @ Magic Kingdom during special events
Note: when Disney makes a boo boo, you can call and have it corrected (like I should have done, this was supposed to be wings)
Tink @ The Animal Kingdom
baby Simba @ The Animal Kingdom
love the sky in this shot, even on a stormy day the Magic Kingdom is magical.

I have heard amazing rumors you can get a sword fight with Captain Hook in Adventureland, and you can get Jasmine & Aladdin at Epcot, but I have not been lucky enough to snag those yet.

Guess I have another reason to go to the Magic Kingdom….

Until Next time