sacanime 2016!

Last weekend, we attended SacAnime in Sacramento, CA (and admittedly, I think it was our first anime-themed convention outside of FanimeCon!). We staff full time for FanimeCon as dance instructors/performers every year and enjoy it immensely, but we don’t really have the time or bandwidth to experience it as regular attendees anymore. The only event there I’ve attended outside of Black & White Ball was probably a fashion show or two!

Rumba and Cha Cha
Our performance at this year’s FanimeCon Black & White Ball


So, it was nice to go to SacAnime as a con-goer with an itinerary of events to choose from and enjoy the weekend with. We were really excited about the opportunities to attend panels and have never really seen a famous VA up close before, so it was our chance to check it out!

Our first panel was a Q&A by Travis Willingham and Laura Bailey. They were a lot of fun, and it was kind of surreal seeing them in the flesh and hearing their voices live! I enjoyed hearing their answers about the industry and their insight into their voice work.

Next was a Cowboy Bebop Reunion panel, which I was super excited for! The anime Cowboy Bebop means a lot to me, and it aired during a time when I hit adolescence and transitioned between awkward and socially difficult phases of my life. Things are obviously different now that I’m an adult with a good life, but after all these years, I’m still a sentimental fan.

You can see me sitting in front! 😀

The panel filled up quickly, but we grabbed decent seats. Seeing my childhood voice actors up close and hearing them talk live was a crazy experience! I was lucky to get the chance to ask a question to the Bebop crew, and felt incredibly honored to receive such a reflective and insightful response from them. We got it on video!

The next day, I had the opportunity to meet VA Steven Blum and grab his autograph! He remembered me and my question at the previous day’s panel and took the time to comment on it- I was so grateful. What an awesome and humble person!

My highlight of #SacAnime! 🙂 #steveblum #cowboybebop #seeyouspacecowboy #bang

A photo posted by Mirabel (@chibi_m7) on

It’s been a few days later, but I’m still feeling inspired and childhood-nostalgic from the experience. The boyfriend and I are feeling convention crazy and are wanting to try out a lot different events around the Bay Area this year. Now that I’m a little older, I have a better appreciation and understanding of the work and travel that artists and actors in the anime/game/entertainment industry do for fans. Looking forward to attending more cons, and hopefully seeing more guests of honor!

In the meantime, look out for a new blog redesign coming in this week or next! 🙂

September 8, 2016 - 5:26 pm | Comments

mission viejo was as golden as i remembered

I’ve been thinking about a write up to my recent vacation from early August for a while! I could post all the long details and pics of every day and how amazing the Wizarding World of Harry Potter was, the deliciousness of butterbeer, buying my first wand, seeing the Disneyland 60th celebration one last time, my first Disney alcoholic beverage at the Cove bar, visiting Captain America again, etc… but I keep coming back to thoughts about my reunion and memories with family, and how it made the entire trip even more magical.

Mission Viejo was as golden as I remembered.

During my recent vacation, I came back to this part of SoCal with my cousins for an impromptu reunion after over 14 years. The last time I was here, I was as an adolescent away from my parents for weeks-to-month long getaways. It was a place and a moment in time where summer felt as endless as it was fleeting. It felt so long ago, but the memories were still bright and warm.



In the early 2000s at a large vacation home full of love, my aunt inhaled the teenage cousins away from their parents for the summer season and spoiled us with theme parks, summer outings, chores, and life lessons. As an only child, it was the closest I felt to having a house full of siblings, spoiled only with excitement of upcoming activities and trips planned for the visit. It was my first time experiencing any sort of significant Disney or Hollywood experience, or even that long of a vacation escapism, before I hit middle school. It was the start of an addiction to the magic and longing that Disney parks brought, that I wouldn’t be able to reach again until my mid-20s.

On a hot summer day in 2016, I finally visited her grave for the first time. I was never able to come here before, until now. The weather and the city were the same shade of gold and warm that I remembered. It’s as if summer never ended here and was waiting for me to come back.

All of us cousins were there, older, grown-up, discussing our various careers and adult paths. But one of them suddenly pulled up a viral and shocking picture of an Olympian with a broken leg on their phone, and we all backed away and cringed out loud. Suddenly we were loud and obnoxious kids again, laughing at ourselves and reminiscing around the grave.

Later that night, my boyfriend and I held hands in Disneyland, watching the parks lights and festivities shimmer at night. I’m finally able enough to come here and indulge whenever I want, whenever I need to. Over a decade later, a sudden appreciation for everything that happened back then and now hit me hard. I still get lost in thought thinking about summer days in Mission Viejo whenever I visit any Disney park. I like to think my aunt would be happy that I found someone to share the vacation tradition with as adults, and that we continued to keet that bit of our childhood alive!


August 22, 2016 - 2:51 pm | Comments