Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Easter is a time for hoping I don't fall down in front of the congregation!

This weekend, I got a phone call from the lector program coordinator at our new parish. I've not been added to the rotating schedule as of yet because I signed up right as they were publishing the March and April schedules. I won't be able to lector there until May. But the coordinator called me out of the blue on Saturday and asked if I was attending the Easter Vigil.

To be honest, I've never been a fan of the Triduum. For Catholics, this means four services in as many days, including a two hour service on Holy Saturday for the Easter Vigil. I know that to many other faiths, this doesn't seem like a lot. But those who are used to a service that lasts ONE HOUR TO THE SECOND each Sunday, it asks a lot.

But it should ask a lot of us. The Easter season is the most important time in the Catholic calendar. What more could we ask for our Savior than to lay down his life for us?

So really, I should just get over myself. A friend asked me to attend Holy Thursday services with her and so I'm going, even though I've never been before. And I'll also be attending the Easter Vigil service at my new parish. Because I was asked to lector.

Yup - it'll be a baptism by fire. I don't even quite know where to stand [although I watched them REALLY carefully this Sunday] or how loud to speak into the microphone to be heard BUT nevertheless - I'll be reading part of the Genesis story on Saturday night. She wanted someone who could proclaim well, because it's such an important reading at an important service. I was honored.

I'm also really excited to be a part of the Vigil that will bring in new members to the Church. I remember my confirmation when I was inducted as an adult and it was a really special day.

I just hope I don't blow it.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Noises Off, RIP

My show officially closed today.

We auditioned for the show in December and the cast for their script before Christmas. Rehearsals started in January, we started performing two weeks ago, and strike took five hours. [I called four hours and fifteen minutes, but didn’t account for painting the floor back to black!]

We started with this…

Noises Off 2010 020 

And made a plan to do this…

NoisesOff build 1

And then added this…

NoisesOff build 2

Put up a backstage wall…

NoisesOff build backstage

We finished up with some paint…

Noises Off 2010 003

And added actors on a finished set.

Noises Off 2010 001

With huge audiences, it was an amazing run.

Noises Off 2010 014 “Just get through for doors and sardines, alright?”

The theatre was able to pay for all the expenses and then some. We’ll start the next show off on a good financial footing.

Noises Off 2010 009Bernadette, our dear, my favorite part of the set

But more than that, we created something special during this run. The show as its written is funny, but when you add in a director with a vision, actors with impeccable comedic timing and a fantastic technical crew with the ability to add the finishing touch, what you get is simply magical.

It’s why I do theatre – productions like these. Granted, I’m glad to see it close so I can get my evenings back, but I’m pretty sure I’ll be back – and soon. :)

For the last time on this production, “And, curtain.”

Friday, March 26, 2010

Walt Disney World: 59 days away and counting

Yes, I know I just went for New Year's.

Yes, I know that we only have a few days in the parks before his cousin's wedding in Orlando.

Yes, I realize that going back means more money.

Yes, this means that we will have been to WDW three times in one calendar year.

But you know what?

I'm a Disney-aholic and I LIKE it. :)

My in-laws surprised us with a few nights stay at Saratoga Springs which is pretty awesome. We stayed there last June and it's a really beautiful resort. I'm looking forward to that wonderful pool we didn't get to test out because there were so many other things to do!

One day, Husband and I will be having lunch at Nine Dragons in Epcot because we haven't been there together before.

And most importantly - the Wishes Dessert Party is back and I think I've convinced Husband to let us go! Ok, it's almost $30 a person but a prime viewing spot for the fireworks PLUS all the chocolate I can eat?! I think that might be my version of Heaven. [Btw, check out this amazing post by Kathy on the DISUnplugged Blog for their description of the party and tell me I'm crazy NOT to go.]

Are any of you as crazy for Walt Disney World as I am?

Three Things I Do Every Day Without Fail

In no particular order... [except for the first one. That one is pretty much number one.]
  1. Kiss my husband. He's pretty amazing at this. :) I make a point to do it AT LEAST once a day.
  2. Check Facebook and Twitter.
  3. Hit the snooze button. I don't mean to, but sometimes I can't help myself.
I'm at the theatre for another performance this evening... it's consumed me again. I love it but I'll be glad when this set comes down tomorrow afternoon. It's time for it to go.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

I love awards shows!

For my monthly outing – I went out on the town on a date with one of my best friends, J.

Kevin Kline Awards 2010 002

We got all gussied up for the fifth annual Kevin Kline Awards. The annual awards show honors local theatre professionals, kind of like the Tony’s for theatre in New York.

I love the opportunity to see all my favorite actors and designers and theatre friends in one place! It’s kind of like a big high school reunion every year. But we also get to dress up and drink.


Kevin Kline Awards 2010 006

By the way…

Kevin Kline Awards 2010 008

I am in LOVE with this blue dress. It’s so shiny and sparkly! Regardless of the fact I had to fast all day and pour myself into my unflattering undergarments, it was SO worth it. :)

I can’t wait to wear it again!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Thankful Thursdays: The Theatre Edition

I love being an actor - otherwise, why would I do it?

But today, I'm thankful for a FINAL dress rehearsal. As in, the last one before we open!

I'm thankful for a set-change list that's correct and isn't missing any pre-set prop notes [I hope!] so I'm not running around like a crazed woman one minute before the curtain goes up wondering "Did I set the whisky bottle in the right place for this act?!"

I'm thankful for a loving husband who lets me spend my evenings in the theatre and only see me when we snuggle around midnight.

I'm thankful for that same husband who promised to make brownies so I can take them to opening night and sell them as concessions to make more money for the theatre. Hopefully they'll make it there and not get eaten on the way to the theatre. They're my favorite!

I'm thankful for opening night.
Even more -- I'm thankful for CLOSING night which happens next Sunday. It'll be a fun run but I'll be so glad to have my evenings back!

... until the itch comes back and I involve myself in another show. As all know will happen.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Mt Laundry has been conquered!

Mt Laundry by photobucket gdemillo

Mt. Laundry – but NOT mine, I promise!

This is my one day off this week, away from the theatre.

So this afternoon, I wrote down a big long list of “to do’s” – sort of a honey-do list for myself. There are SO many thing that need to get done, and tonight was the night. If it didn’t get done tonight, it wasn’t happening until Saturday. We’re going into technical rehearsals which means we get to the theatre before 7 pm and stay until we’ve run the show in its entirety. The show is running around three hours so yeah, it’ll be a late night every night.

On the way home, I called Husband as I always do, to see what’s up and what we’ll make for dinner. He told me that we should go to the gym. After some protesting, I figured we should – I haven’t been in MONTHS and if he wanted to go, then I would love the company!

So that pushed back the “to do’s” about 45 minutes.

But still… Mt. Laundry has been tackled. The last load is in the dryer now and what’s better? The other clean loads have been folded and put away! All that’s left is the last load to fold and put away and convince Husband to do the same with his set of clothes before going to bed.

Oh yeah – the rest of that “honey do” list?

It so ain’t happening. I’ve got to give my DVR some quality time.

Sometimes a weekend makes you stop and realize how good life is


This weekend was crazy, but I was determined to get to Mass. It turned out that 4:30 pm on Saturday was the only time that would work for me. I was expecting it to be completely empty and a very quiet service. But I was glad to see that I was wrong!

I’m so glad that I’ve joined this parish because the music is just the right combination of classic church songs and newer upbeat songs that incorporate harmonies and just make you feel better about being at church.

What I wasn’t expecting was during the Communion song – I cried.

Taste and see, taste and see
the goodness of the Lord.
O taste and see, taste and see
the goodness of the Lord, of the Lord.

I will bless the Lord at all times.
Praise shall always be on my lips;
my soul shall glory the Lord
for God has been so good to me.

Glorify the Lord with me.
Together let us all praise God's name.
I called the Lord who answered me;
from all my troubles I was set free.

Worship the Lord, all you people.
You'll want for nothing if you ask.
Taste and see that the Lord is good:
in God we need put all our trust.

Taste and See by James Moore

I absolutely LOVE this song. It’s one of my favorite Communion meditation hymns. It usually puts me in the perfect place to receive the Lord – and it’s wonderful.

This time it touched me deeper than usual – something about the simply piano arrangement and the single tenor voice lifted above the congregation in praise, combined with those particular words with that sentiment made me realize all the crap I’ve been going thru the past week is just that – crap.

With events and technical rehearsals and fights with Husband and PMS …. it’s nice to take an hour to refresh and rejuvenate. If I hand everything over to the Lord, He can take it. He can help me if I just ask. I just have to remember to ask.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

I love my job but sometimes I wonder why…

I have a problem saying no.

It’s getting me into trouble lately.

So there are two major events going on for my work tomorrow. I have to be at the first one and make sure the second one begins ok.

Then I have to scootch out and head to a tech rehearsal for Noises Off – which opens a week from Friday.

So when more stuff gets piled on my plate with the event – wrong information got in the article in the paper, itineraries are changing at the last minute, the DVD for the background TV at the second event wasn’t looping like it should, I need a certain type of Sharpies for the book signing and volunteers keep cancelling on me – I get frustrated.

I’m SO ready for Friday – when I’ll be done with this event. I’m enjoying my job, but really, sometimes I wonder why I like it when it FRUSTRATES me so much!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Best Birthday Present Ever

Flickr user Bennigan

Remember how I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was thankful for booking a secret trip to surprise someone special? Husband thought it was silly for me to say something like that because it would ruin the surprise!


Well, my dear mother (pictured above with my dear father, taken this past summer) doesn’t read this blog – at least, I don’t think she does. I’ve given her the link but she’s so busy being a lawyer with a major Fortune 50 company I’m not sure she looked at it.

Last Friday, I took off from work in order to get on a plane and head to Fort Worth. Husband was able to come with – and we were on a mission! Nothing could stop us…

My mom has been complaining the past few months that we don’t visit enough. We were there for Christmas but other than that, visits have been few and far between. I really miss living in the same city as my family – it is SO tough not to be able to pick up the phone and have coffee with my mom later in the day.

So when my dad and I were talking about what to get mom for her birthday last Friday, I came up with the idea of surprising her in person. She had NO idea we were coming – she was totally surprised!  Since we didn’t end up getting any pictures throughout the whole weekend, words will just have to suffice.

Mom took the day off from work after a long week of meetings and also, because it was her birthday! No one should have to work on their birthday, you know. So Dad set up a lunch date with her. That’s the scene.

7:00 am – Arrive at STL airport, check bags and head to the gate. All is well.

8:00 am – Flight leaves STL, getting a bit nervous now.

9:00 am – Southwest Airlines pilot tells us we’re going to land 20 minutes early. Damnit. More time to kill before we surprise Mom!

9:40 am – Flight lands. Meet up with Dad, grab bags and head to Arlington.

10:15 am – Ask Dad to stop by Walgreens to pick up a card because, of course, I have forgotten one. We’re the present, but you need a card of course!

10:45 am – Head to La Madeleine, our favorite French cafe; commence the waiting.

11 am – Decide that we have a half hour to kill, head to Best Buy; show Dad all the ways we can spend his money on new laptops and TVs and printers for the house.

11:15 am – Mom purse dials me and I proceed to FREAK.OUT. I don’t answer.

11:30 am – Mom calls Dad and says she’ll be running about ten minutes late. That means we have another half hour to kill. NOTE: We were supposed to meet now.

11:45 am – Back at the La Madeleine parking lot, waiting for mom.

11:50 am – Mom calls me AGAIN. She says she saw I called earlier and was wondering how things were. Says she’s headed to lunch with Dad and can we chat. I tell her that I’m heading to lunch and she asks with who. I stumble and then say um, just going to grab a bite. Ask her if I can call her back later after lunch. Hang up and feel even more nervous about the surprise.

11:55 am – Mom drives up; I proceed to squish down in the front seat of Dad’s car in case she sees me. I’m REALLY excited – and so nervous!

12 pm – Drive over from our hiding spot to the front door and go inside.

12:01 pm – Enter the front door, see Mom by the order taker.

12:02 pm – Mom sees me. Then looks to Husband. Then sees Dad behind us.

12:03 pm – Confusion sets in. She looks from me to Husband to Dad and then to me.

12:04 pm – We finally get to each other, hug, and she clearly is confused. We’re supposed to be in St. Louis and she’s in Arlington. What are we doing there?

There are tears and she can’t stop crying and looking at me and hugging me, then hugging Husband and then of course, hugging HER husband.

She looks at me and says “Are you here all weekend?” :) :) :)

Of course we were! We set aside the whole weekend to just do nothing – we ATE a ton, shopped for living room furniture, went to Mass, saw a movie, slept in. It was LOVELY.

My mom said it was the best birthday present EVER – even better than the year she received two copies of Black Beauty. If you knew my mom, you would realize how much of a compliment that is! She’s a big reader. :)

I missed her again the minute we stepped into the airport to head back to St. Louis. It’s so hard to leave, because the visits are never long enough.

Monday, March 8, 2010

99 random thoughts on the wall…

After the Alter recently posted about 99 things and I thought it was cute! Since I haven't had anything substantial to say in WEEKS, I figured I should write something.

1. Started your own blog – I've been writing on this thing for a few months now. Obviously.

2. Slept under the stars – Technically this is a no, but I've been camping in the great wilderness of Tennessee so I'm wondering if it would count.

3. Played in a band

4. Visited Hawaii

5. Watched a meteor shower

6. Given more than you can afford to charity – I hate to say no to this one but I'm afraid it's true.

7. Been to DisneyWorld – Um, yes. It's pretty darn awesome and we're going back in less than three months!

8. Climbed a mountain – I'm not sure if it was a "mountain" but on the camping trip in TN we climbed up a pretty darn tall hill.

9. Held a praying mantis

10. Sang a solo –Well, not in front of anyone but a judging panel. When I was in college and taking voice lessons, I conquered my biggest fear and sang in front of people. Scared me to death, too!

11. Bungee jumped – I'm not sure I'll EVER be able to do this one. I'm scared of heights.

12. Visited Paris – Husband and I spent our honeymoon there. It was absolutely magical!

13. Watched a lightning storm

14. Taught yourself an art from scratch

15. Adopted a child

16. Had food poisoning – I'm pretty sure I gave myself food poisoning from bad beef in Hamburger Helper back in January. It was NOT pretty.

17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty – This was closed right after 9/11 and so we never even got to go up on any level.

18. Grown your own vegetables

19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France – This was one of the many pieces of art we saw in the Lourve - amazing.

20. Slept on an overnight train

21. Had a pillow fight – Aren't they the best?

22. Hitch hiked – Um, no.

23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill – Well, it started out that way... but I ended up getting sick at the end of it. Figures.

24. Built a snow fort

25. Held a lamb

26. Gone skinny dipping – Given that my parents have a pool, I'm surprised I can't say yes to this one.

27. Run a Marathon – I can barely walk a mile.

28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice

29. Seen a total eclipse

30. Watched a sunrise or sunset – On our first vacation together, Husband and I took a sunrise tour of the Grand Canyon. It was absolutely amazing!

31. Hit a home run – In our beer soft ball league I was lucky if I could hit the ball.

32. Been on a cruise – Multiple times! I think this may be my favorite type of vacations.

33. Seen Niagara Falls in person

34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors- It's on the very long wish list. We're hoping to see Germany and Italy (mine and his) soon.

35. Seen an Amish community- I've seen their wagons on the road but never got to see the community itself.

36. Taught yourself a new language- Ugh. I don't know if I'll ever do this one.

37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied – My husband is in law school. This one's a no.

38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person

39. Gone rock climbing – Only in a rock climbing gym

40. Seen Michelangelo’s David

41. Sung karaoke – It was painful, but yes.

42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt - Like clockwork!

43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant

44. Visited Africa

45. Walked on a beach by moonlight

46. Been transported in an ambulance

47. Had your portrait painted

48. Gone deep sea fishing – Nope.

50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris - On the honeymoon we never actually made it to the top but does the second to last one count?

51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling

52. Kissed in the rain

53. Played in the mud

54. Gone to a drive-in theater – We saw Star Trek at one of these – so much fun!

55. Been in a movie

56. Visited the Great Wall of China

57. Started a business

58. Taken a martial arts class

59. Visited Russia

60. Served at a soup kitchen

61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies – Doesn’t everyone?

62. Gone whale watching

63. Got flowers for no reason – I wish!

64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma – I’m scared of needles so this doesn’t sound like fun to me!

65. Gone sky diving – never gonna happen.

66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp

67. Bounced a check

68. Flown in a helicopter

69. Saved a favorite childhood toy

70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial

71. Eaten Caviar – Again, on the honeymoon in Paris, we had some amazing food and tasted caviar for the first time.

72. Pieced a quilt

73. Stood in Times Square – It’s like the center of the universe.

74. Toured the Everglades –

75. Been fired from a job

76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London

77. Broken a bone

78. Been a passenger on a motorcycle

79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person – Yup!

80. Published a book

81. Visited the Vatican

82. Bought a brand new car –

83. Walked in Jerusalem

84. Had your picture in the newspaper

85. Kissed a stranger at midnight on New Year’s Eve

86. Visited the White House – We had a special tour on our Close Up trip to DC my senior year of high school.

87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating

88. Had chickenpox – Yup!

89. Saved someone’s life

90. Sat on a jury

91. Met someone famous

92. Joined a book club

93. Got a tattoo

94. Had a baby

95. Seen the Alamo in person – When you live in San Antonio, it’s kind of a requirement.

96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake

97. Been involved in a law suit

98. Owned a cell phone – It’s like another appendage.

99. Been stung by a bee