Director Jewels: 2009

Monday, December 28, 2009

it's the start of another 3-day work week...

...and wow, has it been quite the start. I arrived at work this morning to find that the library was closed on Saturday due to the ongoing blizzard in our town, so all of the books from the drop box (basically all returns since last Wednesday) had to be checked in, as well as the 22-page pick list, and all the other normal crazy Monday morning stuff. And there is hardly anyone working today!! I was the third highest in command...and people kept asking me questions! It was weird. But kind of nice. :)

I've been inspired today by what I read on Ali Edwards' blog. She's made a challenge to pick one little word for 2010 and let it make an impact on your life in the next year. I'm still debating my word choice, but right now...I think it may be CALM. We live life at such a harried pace right now, and I think it stresses me out more than I realize. We've already talked about slowing down in 2010 as we're going to have some new things in our life...grad school being one of the big ones. So I am hoping that the new year will bring me some time to reflect, relax, finish the projects, and realize that it's really okay to say no when I'm asked to do something new.

We had a pretty great Christmas. It was absolutely wonderful to have so many days off in a row. It was like a little vacation - and we get to do it all over again this coming weekend (though without a major holiday to add tons of insanity to our plans!). We are going to see A Christmas Story at the KC Rep on Thursday afternoon - Andrew got me tickets for Christmas. I'm super excited!

On top of that joy, it's only 17 days until our delightful vacation. Still haven't tried on any of that swimwear, though it's been in my house for probably a week. Hoping to get to that today! :)

Another favorite gift (also from Andrew)? Project Life. It has not arrived yet, but it should be here very soon. And I am very excited. It's going to be a beautiful way to document 2010...so whether or not I ever finish my scrapbooks, at least I will have something. :)

I'm working on the AGDT scrapbook again. I'm caught up to the Summer 2009 performance (haven't printed Fall 09 pics yet, but I'm working on weeding them so that I can!). So I've started putting together the TEEN scrapbook - starting with pictures from our first teen production, Little Women, in 2007. I have so many photos and I just can't bear to not include them all...so it's going to be quite the scrapbook!! It may have to be just one album for each production. We'll see...

Monday, December 21, 2009

updates.

The Honeymoon Scrapbook. It's done, folks. Completely, 100%, there's-a-title-in-the-front-cover DONE. And it's beautiful. :)

The Vacation. 24 days and counting until beautiful Bahamas. I'm waiting for my massive swimwear order to arrive. I'm hoping that out of the 7 or 8 ensembles I ordered, at least 1 or 2 of them will be worth wearing.

The Other Vacation. Oh by the way, we're going back to my favorite place - NYC - in the spring. We'll be visiting from April 30 - May 3 and I am so excited. We already have tickets for 3 shows, starring famous people such as Nathan Lane, Abigail Breslin, and KRISTIN CHENOWETH!!!! Not quite as excited as I was to meet Sutton - but hey. This is a big deal.

The Current Generational Fad. I really like the phrase.... "it will be epic!" But I'm afraid that I'm too old to use it. Sad day. :(

The Christmas Tree. It's ghetto. No lights, no tinsel, no tree skirt, 4 ornaments and a small stuffed ginger-person stuck inside the branches. It does have a topper.

The Christmas Shopping. Andrew - done. My family - done. Andrew's family - barely started, but I'm giving that responsibility over to him. I'll bet you're wondering how I managed to make so much progress in so little time. Well, let me just tell you - it's a gift card extravaganza for the relatives this year.

The Christmas Wrapping. Almost finished with this! I was blessed with an extra hour at home today (due to running a work-related errand on my own time), and it gave me enough time to clean the bedroom, start working on laundry, and sit with my wrapping supplies and Grey's (watching Season 1 again since I still haven't seen 3-5 and am not content to just move on to another show) for a couple hours. Thank heaven for gift bags. Whoever invented them should be made a saint.

The Christmas Baking. The what?

The Workplace. The crazies have been out in full force the past few days. I'm so thankful for a 3-day work week followed by a 4-day weekend followed by a 3-day work week followed by - gasp - another glorious 4-day weekend. It will be epi-----incredible.

The Television Series Status. If you didn't know, in our "free time" we watch DVDs of long-running TV shows. We've covered Buffy (7 seasons), Angel (5 seasons), and we're currently on Smallville (which is in its 9th season...we're on the 8th and striving to catch up before Season 10).

The Local Theatre Scene. Fantastical news concerning Starlight's 2010 season. It opens with Little House on the Prairie: The Musical which I have been dying to see a) because um, hello, my alter ego for about 8 years was Laura Ingalls, and b) Melissa Gilbert (who was actually Laura Ingalls) is playing Ma in the show!! Starlight is not a good venue at which to meet stars...but it's okay. I'm sure it'll still be a great experience! Starlight is also doing Beauty and the Beast, which irritates me because now my theatre will have to compete with Starlight. But hey - it's not like I'll be missing it. :) Also a local theatre is doing Little Women the Musical - and I'm irritated that I never heard anything about auditions. It's not a professional show, so it could have been a chance for me to have a Sutton role. UGH! I don't understand why people don't contact me before planning their theatre schedules....

The Schedule. It's calmed down. I actually feel somewhat awake today. It's a shock to not be 100% sleep deprived. We'll see how long we can keep this up.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Christmastime is here......wait, what?!!!?!

Well, the show is done. It was a great success, with crowds who seemed to enjoy the magic we created on stage. What more could we ask for?

This leaves me with the realization that it's just 8 days until Christmas...and I haven't really purchased any gifts. This is indeed, a bit frightening!! I'm trying to do some online shopping, but I haven't even had time to think about what to get for anyone...so I don't know what to do. I'm hoping inspiration will dawn before it is too late.


You really haven't lived until you've volunteered to play the Storytime Christmas Elf at the library the week before Christmas. I have done 5 appearances as this happy character, with 2 more planned by Friday's end. I also organized for Santa Claus himself (who happens to have been the star of our Christmas production and also happens to already work for MCPL) to make an appearance. Most of the very small children were terrified, but a few were brave enough to pose for a photo.

Note: it's not a good idea to buy elf shoes on eBay. You'll wear them for about 5 minutes, they will suddenly have massive holes and you won't be able to keep them on your feet...and then you'll have to spend your free time at home making a new pair for the rest of the week. Just make sure you've had lots of practice making Knook shoes (like....10 pairs) for a community theatre show. Then you'll be done in a snap!

And on that happy note, I'm back to online Christmas gift browsing...

Monday, December 7, 2009

well, it's been awhile (again).

I dislike winter weather. Really. What fun is a winter wonderland when you have to get out and drive in it every day? There are too many lunatics on the road. It's not fair that some people actually get to stay inside by their cozy fires while the rest of us brave the madness just so the general public can come check out library books. Really, people? This is why we have personal book collections.

No, it hasn't snowed yet, but there is talk of a coming storm. The library is remarkably quiet this evening. Usually in a case like this, there would be 3,000 people in here trying to stock up before the storm.

The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus at BSCT has lived through its first weekend!! It was definitely Friday night - the first performance - when I actually saw every single child wearing every single costume piece (STRESS!!!!!!!!!), but they all really do look pretty nice. And while I never want to design a fantasy costume scheme again...it was actually pretty fun. I enjoy sewing. I wish I had time to keep that up as another hobby. Unfortunately I can't even stay on top of all the other hobbies...

It's hard to believe that Christmas is fast approaching. I only have a few weeks, and I haven't even given the most basic consideration to Christmas gifts or plans. I have no idea what we're getting anyone. Nor do I know what to get Andrew. It may be a small Christmas in the our household anyway, after the rest of the expenses that have been dumped on us recently. Honestly - why don't people tell you about horrible things like tax bills that you have to pay in December? It kind of seems like I wrote all of this in my last post. Obviously I am still unhappy to be dealing with these things.

We went to the new Target in Blue Springs last night - between the show and a theatre meeting. I was thrilled to actually be in a store with TIME and I found some cute new shirts. It was a good day. I have a very limited winter wardrobe, so it was a much needed expansion. However, the Starbucks in Target did not have any peppermint and I did not get my peppermint mocha. THAT was sad.

I had 5 hours off work today and I spent most of it organizing and cleaning the house, and doing laundry, and really just trying to find the floor in the basement. It had been lost for quite some time. I also found a sweet Dancing With the Stars workout video from work in my movie stack and did part of it and it was pretty sweet. So maybe there is a fun way to weight loss after all...

I wish I had the time to be a domestic diva. Really. I want to bake yummy deliciousness. sigh.

Sad day: I am not putting up any Christmas decorations. I won't have time until the weekend after the show -- and at that point, it would be December 19. What's the point? :(

38 days and we will be in sunny Florida, followed shortly by the BAHAMAS. Believe me, I could not be more excited!!! Oh speaking of this, I definitely need a new swimsuit...hm...

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

two posts in a day? whoa.

I normally wouldn't post again. But I just found a mystery shop for the Thriftway in Forks, WA - which is where Bella gets her photos developed in the book version of New Moon!!!!!!

Perhaps I'm ridiculous for knowing this.

Perhaps I'm ridiculous for being excited.

But it's okay. I don't mind if you call me crazy. ;)

and time just flies...

I don't know where November has gone. Seriously. It's the 24th. Thanksgiving is in two days. I am wrapped up in a whirlwind of crazy! I think life is going to continue at this pace until after Christmas. If I can survive that long.

So I'm designing costumes for The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus. I spent most of last week making 8 fairy dresses. That's a whole lot of fairies. Next up I'm sewing five multi-colored little dresses that look like flowers. And half of them have to be cut bigger than the pattern. And naturally I haven't a clue how to do that. My official costume deadline is next Monday. Costumes were supposed to be finished by November 18. ha! I spent my 5-hour break between work shifts scavenging at thrift stores, hoping to find some costume treasures. Thankfully - I found a corduroy skirt, which I needed!!! It only took 4 stores to find it...

While at the thrift stores, I also found some really cute sun dresses which I can take on our cruise/Disney trip in January. I was afraid I'd have to go out and spent hundreds of dollars on new clothes, and I got these three dresses for $15.00!!! I was pretty excited. They are super cute, and super stylish, and wonderful. It's been awhile since I bought clothes for myself at thrift stores...maybe I'll have to give this plan another chance.

I had my Crop Club meeting at work last night. I only have about 3 people who show up regularly. I'm wishing there were more, but I don't know how to advertise it!!! Anyway, I got all my Christmas cards (purchased from Shutterfly) stuffed into envelopes, and then made my very first all-about-me-random-everyday-life page. I'm pretty proud of it. Even if I ran out of letter stickers and had to use an inverted "3" as an "e", and a "w" as an "m." But I suppose that gives it character. ;)

Did I ever update about the honeymoon scrapbook?? I can't remember. There is good news - it is DONE!!! Well, almost. I finished the last page at last month's crop club meeting - but I still need to do the small album cover title. I've been so consumed by all these other projects (costuming)!!! I didn't have time to grab the NYC stuff before last night's meeting, so I didn't work on it then. Maybe I will get to it after the show is done.

New Moon is AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!! I went to the midnight show with Andrew and Sara (who was kind enough to hold seats for us at the 9pm Twilight), dressed in my Bella ensemble. I got a few weird looks, but also a lot of 14-year-olds who said "OMG you look soooooo amazing!!!" One of them even insisted on taking my photo. I can deal with being a mini celebrity. ;) Andrew bought me a commemorative plastic New Moon cup, which I will proudly display in my scrapbook room. If I can ever get my sewing disaster cleared out of the basement...

Oh speaking of sewing, I finally bought the sewing machine that I was given money for at my birthday. It's pretty nice so far. And it's already been through a lot - getting hauled back and forth to the theatre every day, and sewing many many costumes for me. If it just makes it through this show, I think it will have already earned its keep.

So last night I started doing laundry (finally) and washed all the blue clothes. This morning I got up at 6:30 to put them in the dryer, assuming that my jeans would be dry by 7:50, when I leave for work. Not so. I ran the dryer twice and they were still dripping wet. AARRRGHHH! I was late for work because I had to find alternate clothes. Now I'm wearing my brown paid Gap chino pants, and purple AE sweater, and I feel like I look ridiculous. I'm hoping my jeans are dry when I go home for lunch...

I'm not thrilled that I'm apparently now a responsible adult and am expected to pay $200 in personal property taxes for our two hunks of junk. Being an adult is horrible and I'm not sure why no one ever tells you this while you are young. Or maybe they do, and you just tune it out. That's a possibility.

In other news, I haven't even begun to deal with Christmas yet. I haven't picked out any gifts...nor do I have any idea how I will pay for any gifts that I do select. ugh. Why is Christmas at the most expensive time of the year? Really? Poor planning there...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

eek. eek. and more and more eek.

So, I'm not really a costume designer. But apparently "Assistant Director" has taken on a whole new meaning.

I think my mind is going to explode.

Back to comparing colors and fabrics and sizes...all via the internet, of course, since I don't have any time to go to real stores.....

Monday, November 9, 2009

i know i promised photos BUT...

Really, most people just don't understand what I mean when I say I am too busy to do anything. They assume I'm making excuses. Or I'm just lazy. But really - really - I am that busy.

I'm reading this book right now (in 2-minute snippets). The chapter I read last night said that I need to determine what I want to do more than anything else in the world...and stop saying "yes" to anything that does not support accomplishing those things. So, you might ask, what do I want? That's kind of the problem. I want a lot of things. I want to have a beautiful, happy family, and be an uber-cool, all-the-neighbor-kids-love-me, Godly mommy. I want to throw all this midwest nonsense out the window and live in a tiny little 10th floor apartment in NYC and sing on Broadway for a few years. I want to work out more than once a week (my sad average so far this year) and actually feel like I am in shape. I want to write a book...or 20! I want to continue AGDT and have it grow to the point of actually needing a studio. I want to be caught up (or at least have a fighting chance at being caught up) in my scrapbooking endeavors - and I want to think up new and interesting techniques and submit them to CK and see my layouts published in their articles. I would even love to be on the Dream Team, or work as a contributing editor! How cool would that be? I would also really like to just be able to think of a different meal to cook every single weeknight...and have it on the table when the hubby gets home from work.

So those are my biggest goals in life. They're so varied, it's pretty difficult to imagine all of them coming true. But I can try. I'm setting my New Year's 2010 Goals a bit early this year. Maybe if I have time to meditate on them before the year actually arrives, I'll be able to get a better handle on them. The 2009 resolution list is looking pretty sad and neglected at this point. But - the new year is on the way. And I am hopeful.

In other news, the Twilight Ball was an amazing success!! We had 90 people attend the program - probably more than at any program hosted at this library other than a summer children's event.

AGDT's fall performance was a couple days ago. The kids were awesome, as usual. Kayte came to do everyone's hair even while she was not feeling spectacular - what an amazing friend she is!! While I love teaching, and love watching those girls perform, and just generally love spending time with them - I am not sad that I have a 3-month break before a new set of drama classes begin. I realized yesterday that I did 4 semesters in a row this year - Winter was Little Princess / Secret Garden at BSCT, then Spring, Summer, and Fall were AGDT. I have directed 10 plays this year. My little dramatic mind needs a break!! I am going to offer a Christmas Crafts Club to the AGDT girls - but it will just be crafts. No drama. No props. No costumes. No set pieces. No crazy performance day. 4 weeks of crafting fun. I think I can handle that. ;)

My hubby fixed the toilet in the master bathroom yesterday. You have no idea the joy this puts in my mind. That toilet has been broken for like 3 months. At least. I can't even remember!

Next big project on the list is the MCPL Homeschool Expo on Wednesday this week. I am dressing in full Civil War attire (chemise, corset, and the works) and doing a demo on women's fashion in the 1860's. Basically - I'm letting an army of little girls try on some hoop skirts. Hopefully they'll think it's cool! The good news is, the Expo is at the MGC, where Andrew works, so I will get to spend at least the morning/lunch with him. :)

That's all the news of the day. Someday I'll have time to actually post pictures of things. Really. Maybe when people start reading the blog I'll make more of an effort.....

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Little Bo Peep, Her Wolf & a Sheep - Enchanted Forest 2009

Because directing a community theatre holiday production is just not enough, we decided to volunteer as actors in this year's Enchanted Forest.  The show is a fundraiser for a local children's theatre - definitely a worthy cause.

For the past couple of weekends, we have been hanging out in a (very cold) forest until all hours of the night.  The Enchanted Forest is fantastic - a collection of non-scary skits from characters you may recognize from popular fairy tales and nursery rhymes. 

Since Andrew and I wanted to be in a skit together, we were assigned the characters of Little Bo Peep and the Wolf!  Here's a little behind the scenes look at the process.


It's cold when you sit outside for several hours in a forest!  Many layers required.  Yes, including hair.  Excuse the red eyes.  I realized after editing that I failed to fix them...


All costumed and made up!  A little story about that hat - while it looks fantastic, it seriously was the worst thing to keep on my head.  I had to redo it about every ten minutes, which drove me crazy.


All set and ready to head out to the woods!


You'll find a wide variety of characters throughout the forest!  Anything from Peter Pan and some pirates...


...to everyone's favorite Wizard of Oz friends!


But I'll admit, we're a little prejudiced.  The Bo Peep and Wolf characters, located here at the Wooluff Detective Agency, are the most entertaining stop on the tour through the forest!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

today is a Forks day.

I am SO excited about the weather today. You have NO idea! It's a gloomy, windy, rainy, beautiful glorious Forks day. Ah I love Forks days. :)

But it is especially appropriate, because today I am hosting the Twilight Ball at my library. There are 3 of these balls scheduled for MCPL - one in each county - and we were the lucky branch selected for Jackson county. I have had SO much fun with this. SO much fun. I have spent most of the past couple days stringing up lights to make a scene that looks like Edward and Bella's prom dance, and we covered a wall in black paper and are hanging posters and favorite quotes from the books all over the wall. Let's just suffice it to say that the children's area has had a significant makeover!! Personally I think it looks much better this way and I would prefer to leave the lights up all the time.

One of my coworkers brought in some speakers and a subwoofer, as we're playing the movie on our projector screen and the sound quality it has is pretty terrible. But now, with our speaker setup, we're going to have some pretty sweet awesome sound, and I think we all might just forget that we're in a library. It's a real shame we don't have a separate room for this occasion - I kind of feel badly for the normal library patrons who might be in tonight. But oh well.

So remember how I was supposed to have finished the honeymoon scrapbook by now? Well...it's almost done. I have ONE page left. But I've been temporarily neglecting the project in favor of another. I'm making a sweater that looks like Bella's prom sweater. Pretty much that equals I bought a plain, boring white sweater...and am sewing on all kinds of appliques and beads and stuff and making it personalized! I doubt I'll ever wear it, aside from when I'm dressing up as Bella. But that's definitely not the point. Did I mention tonight is a costume party??

Photos coming soon... I promise!


Bella

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

it's almost done!!

Ahhhh!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm pretty excited. I only have FIVE (count them - one, two, three, four, five!) pages left to create in my honeymoon album! This project has been so consuming of my free time for the past few months, I can hardly even imagine moving on to something else - but soon, I will be doing just that!! Come to my house and I will show you my beautiful glorious album. I am perhaps a little too proud of this book. But I just can't help it. ;)

Other news -
  • Planning a Twilight Ball at work. I am getting paid to make dozens of Team Edward / Team Jacob buttons, and for the actual ball, I get to dress like Bella, eat food, and watch the movie. It's gonna be fabulous.
  • Audition week is done. We're currently trying to find a Santa Claus for our production. Sadly, if we don't find one by next week, we're going to have to cancel the show. :( I'm messaging everyone I can think of.
  • AGDT is currently in the 5th week of practice. That means I have 3 weeks left. That means I seriously need to get some costume and prop work done. I have done practically nothing for these plays. Yikes.
  • People are starting to think I will never finish the AGDT Spring and Summer DVDs. Hey, I'm starting to think I'll never finish them!! I have a day off next Saturday when I will be home by myself all day. I'm thinking...I should probably have a video edit marathon.

That's about it. Hopefully next time I update...the honeymoon book will be done! :)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

life just never stops, does it?

I think last time I stopped by this blog I made myself a promise that I would update regularly. Well, so much for that.

We had the first night of auditions yesterday for The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus, our newest BSCT adventure. Andrew is directing this one, and I am the AD. I'm still trying to figure out how to adjust back to the theatre lifestyle after having several months off. I'm not sure it's going to be a pleasant transition... Anyway, more auditions tonight and callbacks tomorrow. We're hoping for a lot of adults to show up tonight, as we only had about 3 yesterday - and we definitely need more than that!!

I have made a decision. It is a pretty sad decision, and one of which I am not truly proud. But it must be so. I am going to purchase our Christmas cards this year. I had already gotten the supplies to make a sample card, but I've had those for about 3 weeks and have yet to pick them up - so I'm thinking, now that my free time has gone from little to absolutely none, when in the world am I going to make 150+ Christmas cards? Yes, never. So...sadly...it's going to be Shutterfly cards this year. Oh well. I hope to return to making beautiful cards next year - and maybe everyone will understand. Still have to get that perfect Christmas card PHOTO, though. ;)

I currently have an awful paper cut on my middle left finger. I sliced it open on a p-slip at work yesterday. It hurts to touch things, wash my hands, etc. Not pleasant at all, but I (of course) failed to bring band-aids, so I'm suffering through until 5.

Old news now...but new to you! The honeymoon scrapbook has made much progress!! I believe I have 13 pages remaining until it is complete! This is so exciting for me - as I don't actually have a completed album in my possession, except for the basic 6x6 I made for Andrew the Christmas we got engaged. I cannot wait to have a finished, beautiful, wonderful album that I can hold anytime I want. So exciting!! :)

The Crop Club also went very, very well...I think that is going to be a fun little diversion from "real work" once a month. heehee.

And that is all I have time for. Sorry it may not be complete. Sorry it may not be logical. I must return to all those other things...!

Monday, September 21, 2009

it's a rainy monday.

Apologies for my absence. I would like to be one of those bloggers who writes about fascinating things on a daily basis, but I don't have that many amazing things happen - and when they do, the last thing I have time for is to write about them!!

I spent most of last week suffering through a horrible allergy/cold/sinus mess. I finally caved and went to the doctor on Thursday (symptoms started on Sunday), and she said it was entirely allergy related. I'm just not sure, because it was pretty awful. Anyway, it ended up as a sinus infection and thank goodness I got meds when I did, because there were a couple NOT pretty days over the weekend. Yuck.

It's my birthday week!! I get pretty excited about a week before my birthday, because I get email coupons from Zio's, Red Robin, Moe's, Coldstone, Dairy Queen, Baskin Robbins, Texas Roadhouse, Famous Dave's, V's, Red Lobster, and Buca di Beppo saying "we love you SO much, we want to give you FREE FOOD!!" Granted, I don't need that much food in one week...but it's nice to be loved. :) So far, I have just used the Moe's. Hoping for Zio's, Red Robin, and of course all the ice cream!!!

People think my job is easy. They don't realize that sometimes, I spend hours searching for books on the "Origins of Agriculture" for 3-year-olds at the Ivy League preschool. Apparently we're trying to create some little geniuses, but I'm pretty sure they will find a lot more interest in "My First Big Farm Book" than anything that has a serious historical content.

Happy library tidings, the scrapbooking club at work is beginning this month! We had our first scrapbooking class last week - and I honestly will say I was not impressed with the style of scrapbooking used by the presenter of the class. She covered the basics pretty well, though. She will be at tonight's class, and next week's class - which is doubling as our first official "Crop Club" meeting. After that --- it's all me. Woohoo! I would love to work for a scrapbook magazine or company, but I guess this is a decent first step. Hopefully it will be so popular that I will be "forced" to expand it into multiple nights every month. Heh. ;)

On the scrapbooking note, more happy tidings! I finished 4 pages in the honeymoon album last night!! The poor book has been sitting there, just looking at me and haunting me all week - as I spent most of my time at home curled up on the couch wishing my head would just go on and explode! - and finally - finally I was able to work on it yesterday. I wrapped up the entire American Museum of Natural History 4-page spread, and there was much joy in my house!! I have about 23 pages left to complete. I can't remember how many pages there are in total...but I think I'm over halfway done!! yay! (so much for having it done by the end of June...remember that goal?! ha!)

Andrew and I spent a few hours last night cleaning out the garage. Wow, it's amazing how much junk can accumulate in the course of just a few weeks! We had not yet put away anything from the Summer AGDT performance...that was most of the problem. Thankfully, the space is now functional - just in time for the Fall AGDT class that will be rehearsing there today. I believe strongly in procrastination!!

In other news, we finally hung up some wall stuff in our bedroom this weekend. I bought a shelf set approximately 6 months ago, and it's been sitting on the bedroom floor ever since. We picked out a great giant wall frame with a quote - "Life is not measured by how many breaths you take, but by how many moments take your breath away." - or something to that effect. Anyway, we got that and the shelves hung and I'm super excited! I think I want to paint something soon. Most of the walls in my house have specks and scratches and holes and dirt and general yuck covering them. So it's time for a little revamping. Naturally I decide this a couple weeks before we start another BSCT production - when my life will descend into utter chaos and I will lose all sanity and lack of ability to accomplish anything from my to-do list. Oh well. :)

And those are my random thoughts for the day. Sometimes I wish there were a cohesive thought to the way I write...but then, this style pretty much describes my life right now, so I guess it's all right. Here's hoping I don't wait weeks to post again!

Friday, September 11, 2009

To do and NOT to do...

I had quite a to-do list last night. A few things included on that list were -
  • make photo DVDs from LPSG
  • get the DVDs ready to mail
  • make a New Baby card for a friend
  • get package to said friend ready to mail
  • clean the kitchen
  • clean the master bathroom
  • hang some shelves
  • work out (!)
  • cook dinner
  • organize checks from AGDT, LPSG DVDs, etc

Here are some things NOT included on my to-do list -

  • trip on a ripped slipper
  • fall halfway down a staircase with a plate full of spaghetti, chicken, broccoli, and bread
  • have said food land upon leg and scald you
  • completely stain clothing
  • run emergency load of laundry
  • have emotional breakdown
  • eat half of husband's dinner since own food is now gone
  • fall into bed at 8:30 and accomplish nothing

I'll let you decide which of the two lists I decided to go with.

Monday, August 31, 2009

will it never end?

The video project goes on. and on. and on. The weekend was definitely productive as far as the project goes...no surprise, considering I put in probably 15 solid hours of work. My best guess is that I have another 5-6 hours of icky sound check and menu creation before rendering. I'm hoping to get it done in less time than that, so that it can be done TODAY. I doubt things will go quite that smoothly, but I can always dream.

Who would've guessed that I would still be dealing with Little Princess / Secret Garden in SEPTEMBER? Wow...we're coming up on a year of work on this project. Pretty sad.

Friday, August 28, 2009

I hate insurance!!!

I ran out of contacts yesterday. Frantic, I tried to order more. Of course I couldn't, because of course it's been far longer than a year since I've had an eye exam. So I scheduled one, at the first place I called, because I don't have vision insurance, and who cares, right?

Ha. So the new eye doctor tells me the brand of contacts I've been wearing for 7 years are only supposed to be 2-week contacts (I've always been told they were for a month's wear - and I never actually abide by THAT), and gives me new, stronger ones that a) hurt my eyes, b) give me a nice little headache and c) are actually -.25 stronger than what he prescribed, so I'm wondering how my poor eyes are feeling about that. All of this nonsense for the low, low price of $95! yay!

Then I get back to work and discover - oh, guess what - I actually DO have vision insurance, and of course I didn't pick a doctor on the plan, so YES, I will be paying for the full visit when I could have just paid the $20 copay. And I will be buying contacts on top of that as well. Can you tell that I am thrilled.

I shudder to think of how much time I will spend in my future trying to understand this insurance nonsense. I can't even process insurance information correctly for myself. What in the world will I do when I have kids?!!

I just want new contacts. Someone help me, please.

Monday, August 24, 2009

there are some things...

...that I truly enjoy.

  • ...the 5 hours I spend off work on Monday afternoons (during the very short break between AGDT classes - this semester it's 4 weeks, 2 of which are now gone, and 1 of which is Labor Day and doesn't really count). It's the one time of the week when I feel that my house is not a lost cause, I might eventually catch up on the laundry, and there is hope for all of the never-ending projects.
  • ...finding that there is a new specialty scrapbooking store in downtown Lees Summit, less than 5 miles from my house. It was especially nice to find that they carry a lot of specialty papers that I previously had to drive to Archiver's to acquire. I hope that someday I can have my own little business in a quaint little shop on a downtown street. Such fun!
  • ...Date Night with Andrew. Sure, I might accidentally leave my delicious leftover Zio's on the table (along with the picture that he drew me with crayons on the tablecloth), and I might be horrified that some Hollywood genius picked Eric Bana to play Henry de Tamble in The Time Traveler's Wife movie adaptation, but... Gap's 40th birthday party meant piano music, free cake, bottled water, and M&M's at the checkout counter, PLUS $20 off delightful new jeans and an additional 15% off my total purchase. Eric Bana may be a crummy actor, but the story was still beautiful and I cried through the last half hour of the movie. Plus I spent time with my amazing man, without worrying about any of the silly projects waiting in my house. Yes, date night is a good thing.
  • ...the feeling of accomplishment when I finally finish - or even start - a project. I put together the preliminary stuff on the AGDT Spring 09 DVD today in about an hour. That's a really good feeling.
  • ...having my iPod at work. Really, what's better than being able to tune out the world around you and surround yourself in Josh Groban, fantastic Broadway (Little Mermaid, Shrek, Young Frankenstein and more), Coldplay, Owl City, and random old favorites from Straylight Run, Snow Patrol, Augustana, and Sarah Brightman. It really makes life much more bearable.
  • ...eBay. There's something remarkable about online shopping, but eBay really takes the cake. I mean, you can find some amazing deals, interesting and exciting things that are either not available in America or out of print altogether, or just about anything. There's really nothing quite like the thrill of winning an auction in the last 5 seconds of bidding. And on top of all these good things, when it's all said and done, you get a surprise package in your mailbox containing these amazing purchases a few days later! It's all around just a good thing. And hey, if you have time and inclination, you can even make money selling things on eBay too. :)

That's it for now. What do YOU truly enjoy? Make time for one of those things...it's always worth it.

a true dining "experience"...

These days, it seems all of the businesses in the world are trying to make sure that when you visit them, you don't just buy something, or browse, or simply eat your food quickly and then leave. No, they want you to have a complete experience. (This is a huge push at the library right now...which is why I get to host a scrapbook club on work time starting in September. HA!)

So, our latest "experience" took place yesterday afternoon at 54th Street Bar and Grill. We met Andrew's parents there for lunch after church. Our server brought us drinks quickly, and we decided what to eat.

The waiter came back to take our order and we asked if we could use 2 different coupons (a free appetizer with entree purchase; and a free entree from the 54th punch card). He said no - if everything was on one ticket. So we asked him to split the ticket so that each couple could use a coupon. He said that was fine.

Now, those of you who know us, know that Andrew and I are incredibly picky eaters. It's very rare that we go somewhere and can order food without making exceptions such as "no tomatoes, no onions, no peppers, and the sauce on the side." So Andrew's order went something like this --

"We want an appetizer - potato skins, but we don't want the ranch dressing ON the skins, we'd like it on the side. And the 7-oz Sirloin, Medium-rare (...."um sir, we can't do medium-rare, just medium...") - okay, Medium is fine. And the fresh vegetables for the side instead of potatoes."

Well, the poor waiter was just SO confused about this. It took him about 2 minutes to write it down. Then I ordered my Blackened Chicken Caesar Salad. He paused, then asked me... "and what kind of dressing?" I blinked, thought "um..." and said "well, Caesar." He goes, "oh, okay!" and off he goes.

After about 15 minutes, we realize that a) we do not have our appetizer and b) we also have not been given any bread. He finally comes back to refill our drinks and we ask about this. He assures us everything is on the way.

The appetizer arrived, finally (5 small potato skins. Literally 5. It was over $1 per skin), and we ate it pretty quickly. The waiter came back and took our appetizer plates, though we still had not been given any bread. When the bread finally came, he had to get more plates, and then had to get regular butter as some of our party didn't like the honey butter. We devoured the bread in about 3 minutes. Then we waited again. We finally asked him where our salads were, and he rushed off, supposedly to get them. He came back sheepishly after a few minutes and said "um...I'm really sorry, but I just put in your order. I forgot to do it before. So, we'll get it out really soon."

Then we waited...and waited...and waited...and realized after awhile that we had been sitting at the table for close to an hour with no sign of our meal. Eventually (!) a team of people brought out some plates of food for us - a steak for Andrew's dad, a salad for his mom. Their orders were correct. Andrew was given a small side dish of steamed veggies. I was offered a regular chicken salad (way different than Caesar - it contains lots of icky things I won't eat!), with a small dish of Caesar dressing to put on it. I said, "I ordered the Caesar salad." He said, "oh - I thought you wanted this?" I said, "no." So they took the salad away and I was left without food.

It's always amusing to see how quickly food can actually be put together in a restaurant. I had my new (correct) salad within about 5 minutes. However, Andrew still had only a dish of vegetables. About this time, the manager came out to console us - though we had not really caused a fuss. He asked what was going on and when he heard about the missing steak, he said he would get it out immediately and would also remove it from our bill.

The steak finally arrived, on a plate with another set of steaming veggies. Andrew's salad also arrived about this time, with blue cheese dressing instead of ranch. We ended up boxing it and taking it home, as we were all pretty amazed at how poorly our meal had been handled!

The icing on the cake, of course, was when we had to settle up. The waiter had forgotten that we were supposed to have two separate checks, so he had to go back and have the manager take care of that. The receipt was confusing, but we ended up paying for 2 entrees, Andrew's parent's coffees.........and a $1.99 side of steamed veggies - the original "meal" they delivered to Andrew. His mom just paid for it. Who knows what would have happened if we had asked for yet more service.

We're pretty sure the waiter was new. At least...that's what we're hoping. :)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

whew

So, in the last couple of weeks, life has been a combination of blurred, insane, ludicrous, and exhausting. Apologies for the lack of posting, but 1) no one reads this and 2) I have so many things to do, I'm actually starting to forget things and make mistakes. This doesn't happen with me, so I'm pretty upset. I've started using my Outlook calendar at work, but all that's doing is giving me angry messages when something is overdue. :(

Sometimes I think to myself, I really need to start saying "no" to every new idea. I really need to reduce the level of stress in my life. I really need to remove some of the projects I have taken on so that I have time to stop and enjoy life, rather than rushing through it at the speed of light. Unfortunately, of all my various activities, the only one I'm willing to give up (at least part time) is work, and more unfortunately, that's the one I have to keep because it pays the most. *sigh*

Lousiana was hot and humid, and it took us most of forever to get there and back...but it was lots of fun. We stayed in a sweet little bed and breakfast called Susan's Cottages and it was very nice. I'll try to post pictures sometime. We attended the wedding of Andrew's college roommate and helped to fill the getaway car with balloons and streamers. The drive home was remarkably long, and our GPS friend Jane took us a ways out of the way. But eventually we returned to Missouri and when we finally got home around midnight, I discovered a beautiful PIANO waiting for me!!! It needs to be tuned, but it's wonderful. My husband is amazing. Happy Anniversary to us! :)

The following weekend (Aug 6-8) we traveled to Jefferson City, MO so that Andrew could attend the Missouri State Genealogy Association Conference. We stayed in the hotel where the conference was being held, ate some pretty bad hotel restaurant food, and went on a pretty boring tour of the Missouri State Archives. I also managed to forget my toothbrush, toothpaste, snacks, and tweezers, so I journeyed out to Walgreens to save myself from certain doom during the trip. I found a Goodwill store and had fun just browsing for a little while...the problem with my life right now is that I never get to just BROWSE! :) The rest of my time was spent in our hotel room, where I set up a mini scrapbooking studio and watched the entire first season of Grey's Anatomy on DVD. Creative freedom + Dr. McDreamy = a very good weekend. :)

When we returned on Saturday, we had to rush to Blue Springs for the first annual BSCT picnic! Sadly, only about a quarter of those who RSVP'd showed up, but hey, we had some fun times.

The following week was wild and crazy, as I spent every evening trying to prepare for the AGDT performance, which was on August 15. I got the AGDT scrapbook completely caught up (aside from Little Women and Ms. Scrooge, which are going in a separate TEEN book), the night before the play. So yes. It was up to date for less than a day. Oh well. I'm determined to stay on top of it so that it can't take me 2 years to complete again. And maybe now that that's out of the way, I'll have time to actually finish my honeymoon book! *fingers crossed*

Anyway, the AGDT performance was great! I have to admit, the classes drain me, but when we get to that performance and I see all those little girls beaming at curtain call, it's all worth it and I want to do it all over again. I love teaching.

And...that's about it. I've spent a good majority of my time since Saturday sleeping, watching TV with my hubby, and feeling guilty because I'm too exhausted to clean my house. But oh well. The house is getting there. Sorta.

Less than 4 weeks until fall classes start, so I'm trying to coordinate all of that. Fun times will be had by all!...if I can get the schedule worked out and fill up the classes. Of course I do all of this by email on my work time. Someday I will have more time. I know this is true. I know it, I know it, I know it.

Oh, random call from the Murder Mystery folks means a quick job this Friday evening, plus a weekend later in September! Yay for getting paid for something I actually enjoy - PLUS a completely free weekend getaway! :)

Well, there's a brief wrap on my life the past month or so. I'm off to accomplish more things. Date night tomorrow! I'm excited. :)

Monday, July 27, 2009

another monday...

Why do I always seem to write updates on Mondays? Is it just because Monday is the longest day in the history of the universe and it knows how much I hate it and it seeks to destroy me? That seems likely.

2 more weeks remain of AGDT classes. I have gathered very few props, but most of the costumes are done. Everyone has at least SOMETHING to wear. Thank goodness! I am counting down the days to when AGDT will be my only "full-time" job. It was so sad; my public school student asked me today what the fall classes would be...and I didn't have the heart to tell her there won't be one for her age group in a time slot that falls after school. Poor kid. I want to give these little girls the opportunities they can't find elsewhere! I haven't decided about summer classes for next year because I will (hopefully) be entirely too busy being onstage in Beauty and the Beast. :D

Finished up with Harry Potter last night - WOW, I forgot a lot of things!! I think I only read book 7 once and it was probably in about 12 hours, so I didn't really absorb much. Anyway - excited for the new movies but am speculating on how destroyed they will likely be. But now that I've left Hogwarts for awhile, I've moved back into my current favorite chick lit, Sophie Kinsella. (no Hogwarts...but still in Britain!) I've knocked out the Shopaholic series and am now reading Remember Me? which is good so far (chapter 6). There are too many treasures out there waiting to be read; there just aren't enough hours in my day. Oh for the summers I spent doing NOTHING but reading up a complete storm in order to win every local reading contest.

Footloose at BSCT wrapped yesterday. It was supposed to be a pretty simple strike - and I suppose it was - but by the time it was all said and done, we were exhausted! We had to go with the group over to the Civic Center to make sure everything was put back where it belonged. Not a fun task, since there are construction trailers surrounding the building and getting into our prop room is like going on a wild adventure to nowhere. But, all was completed, and there will be no more cutting footloose in Blue Springs for awhile.

The honeymoon scrapbook, which has been sadly not mentioned in quite some time, has even more sadly not made much progression. I believe we are currently at 17 completed pages; I'm in the midst of a 4-page spread on Madame Tussaud's. AGDT and BSCT have been consuming all hints of "free moments" so I usually work on the scrapbook in 5-minute segments, after I eat dinner, or while waiting for the laundry to finish in the morning. Oh well. My goal was to have it done before a year had passed, but hey - at least it is UNDERWAY. Most of my projects don't get CLOSE to that!

We leave town on Thursday night to head to Louisiana for one of Andrew's college roommates' wedding. I can't say I'm overjoyed that we'll be spending roughly 13 hours in the car on our 1-year wedding anniversary, but it's okay. I'm sure we'll survive and it might even be fun! Andrew found a really cute little bed and breakfast where we'll stay while we're down there. Hopefully we won't get attacked by an alligator. :)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

sick days are no fun.

The plus to a sick day is that I get to stay home, sleep, be productive, and do things I normally can't even dream of doing (scrapbooking, watching chick flicks). The downside is that, well, I feel awful. I guess it's the price we have to pay.

I'm plodding away at this LPSG DVD. Roughly 18 minutes of footage is done. It's going a little faster today, but my eyes are starting to hurt, so I'll probably take a break soon.

Saw Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince at the crazy busy midnight opening! I have heard a lot of mixed reviews, but I thought it was one of the best as far as adaptation. I'm now reading book 7 for what I think is just the second time. The book was released back in 2007, about a month before I met Andrew and became really busy falling in love. :)

Yesterday I had a really bad craving for cupcakes. Someone brought delicious chocolate ones to work, but I ended up leaving work early and so only had one. When I came home and was wearing pajamas, I felt inspired to cook the one remaining cake mix in my home into red velvet mini cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. I'm now living entirely on those. We have no groceries whatsoever. It's pretty sad. But I don't feel well enough to put on makeup and brave the grocery store. My wonderful husband has volunteered to do the shopping tonight while I am teaching my AGDT class.

I know no one reads this, but come see FOOTLOOSE next week at BSCT!! I'm dressing up in crazy 80's fashions just to sell concessions and tickets and StarGrams, and it'd be a real shame for you to miss seeing me with a scrunchie-bound side ponytail. It's pretty fantastic. And the show's good, too!

That's about it for today. Sorry I'm a bore. But wait - no one actually sees these posts! I guess we're okay then. ;)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

triumph!

ha! There have been many naysayers, but I told you I would finish the Harry Potter books before the movie! I have just finished reading Half-Blood Prince - which, granted, is not the final book, but IS the movie that debuts this evening at midnight. I have not yet decided if we're going to the midnight show, as it will make for a very long night - and we have a VERY long day ahead of us tomorrow. Not sure the complete lack of sleep is best for our health. Also my leg is cramping - rather like it has lost circulation, so sitting in a really crowded theatre at 1am is not sounding like the most fun option.

Anyway. Just wanted to brag that I DID IT! :)

Monday, July 6, 2009

weekends are just not long enough!!

I could use another 2 days of rest, as my weekend was really not that relaxing and I accomplished practically nothing on the never-ending to-do list. It seems far too soon to be back at work starting another week. *sigh*

It was a fun weekend nonetheless, with a 4th of July wedding and spending time with some friends who were visiting from out of town.

CONGRATULATIONS to Eddie, Christi, and Peter Parker on the birth of baby Liberty last Wednesday!! She is beautiful and Auntie Jewels is really excited to meet her. I don't know when this will take place...but hopefully soon. :)

Harry Potter update... I'm about 450 pages into Order of the Phoenix. I've started having treadmill/reading marathons in an attempt to get the books done in time. I think I can make it. Unless something drastic happens.

I've been working on the BSCT Little Princess / Secret Garden DVD project. I'd forgotten that it's a lot more difficult to edit a video with 3 takes than it is with just 1. I have promised so many people I would have this project done by now...I feel guilty, but even my guilt does not provide enough time to get the project under control. I'm averaging 3 hours editing 10 minutes of footage. At that speed, for two hour-long shows, you can imagine the dark scary path that lies before me. ugh. Editing is a full time job and I don't have that many hours left in my life!!

So far most of my flowers are still alive. My thumb may not be completely green, but at least it has a hint of color in there somewhere. :) The roses, unfortunately, seem to be the choice snack food of some pest living in my yard. We've talked about working on a solution, yet haven't had time to go to the store to search for something yet.

And that's about it. Hard to believe summer is half over already...it feels like I should have a nice big vacation here sometime soon. Oh well...

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

rescued from dark despair!

One of my AGDT students arrived practically in tears at my 2:30 class yesterday. When asked what was wrong, she explained that her miniature "Nellie" doll had just accidentally rolled down the drain in front of my house. Poor thing, she was trying so hard to not be completely devastated, but having been an American-Girl-obsessed-8-year-old in my lifetime, I understood what she was going through. We decided to get through class and then see if we might be able to get the doll back.

Class ended a few minutes early, so the girls and I headed out to the drain. We tried flashlights and I was lying on the concrete slab trying to see inside, but the angle was such that all I could see was the little ladder inside the manhole. This gave me inspiration and I ran back to the garage to get the best tools I could find...a hammer and a screwdriver. The screwdriver proved ineffective, but the hammer was very useful in prying the manhole cover partially off the hole. WOW, those covers are incredibly heavy!!! By the time I had gotten a corner lifted, one of the moms had arrived and came over to help me drag it off. I was pretty afraid someone was going to lose a toe, but thankfully we were okay. Once the cover was off, we could look down inside the hole - and great joy! There was Miss Nellie O'Malley, resting facedown on the ground far below us. The girls were so thrilled to at least see her, but I still had to get her out.



(Nellie is the little spot of blue on the left side of the photo).


I ran into the house to get tennis shoes and then carefully lowered myself into the hole.

Nellie was unscathed aside from a bit of grass debris in her hair and on her dress.


I brushed her off and handed her up! Getting out of the hole was a little more difficult than getting in, but it was definitely worth it when I heard the cheers and saw the look on Holli's face when her doll was saved.


So the adventure ended. Crazy thing - I'm dying to go back down in that hole and explore. It's creepy...but definitely cool.

Monday, June 22, 2009

AGDT summer classes are here. Back when I was planning them, it seemed like they were so far away. Well, they're here! yay. The kids are fun, as always. But the exhaustion and lack of time are here, too. Oh well. Someday I will catch up on everything. At least, that's what I will tell myself forever.

My sparkly Times Square page is giving me fits. The sparkly paper will not accept my normal adhesive, so I bought a liquid glue today. Hopefully this will force it into submission.

Hobby Lobby has scrapbook paper and wall art on sale this week, so I also bought almost all of the supplies for my scrapbook room wall words project. I'll post pics once it's done.

Last Friday, we spent the day working in the yard - ripping up the old, dead shrubs in the front yard, and replacing them with new beautiful shrubs and flowers. It was a long, tiring day, and both Andrew and I were rather sunburned, but the result was worth it. I now have such pretty flowers! I don't remember what they're all called, but they are purple and pink and gorgeous! I even got a little "Knockout Rose" bush. It's adorable and I ♥ it!!

I have progressed to page 134 of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. 23 days and 2 and 3/4 books to go. There is hope yet.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

It's SO hot outside! ugh.

13 completed pages now reside in the Honeymoon album. Progress = yay! :) The page I'm currently working on is our first walk through Times Square. It's going to be all glittery. I love sparkles.

I went shopping "just because" for the first time in MONTHS and found all kinds of really cute clothes at Target. This dress - http://www.target.com/Merona-Keyhole-Dress-Rose/dp/B001QXV3LA/sr=1-3/qid=1245254185/ref=sr_1_3/192-6632489-3479959?ie=UTF8&frombrowse=0&index=target&rh=k%3Amerona%20keyhole&page=1 - I have already purchased in 3 colors and am considering a 4th. It's possibly the best summer sundress EVER. I am quite dismayed though, because while it is DEFINITELY hot enough outside to wear them, in my place of employment, it generally feels like it's 40 degrees. I wear a thick sweater almost all the time. Sadness.

Happy Birthday today to my Daddy!!!! :)

Garage sale at my house Thursday-Saturday this weekend! I am fully aware that no one reads my blog; but if they did, I would offer for them to sell their stuff in my sale as well. I'm currently trying to go through the house and purge as much as possible. I'm tired of having stuff piled up in every corner of every room. However, I LIKE all of my things so much that it's very difficult for me to imagine actually letting anything go. So I'm trying to find a healthy balance, and clear out as much as I can. We'll see how it goes.

Back in December, I decided to re-read the Harry Potter series before the new movie came out. Well, here we are, 28 days from the movie, and I am roughly halfway through HP & the Prisoner of Azkaban (book 3). So...it's time for a crazy reading frenzy. There was definitely a time in my life when this would have been a piece of cake, but I don't know if it'll happen this time. Hopefully! I really want to revisit the world of the books before seeing how badly the screenwriters have trashed the story.

The library is strangely quiet this afternoon. I probably shouldn't have said that. Now we'll be overrun with screaming children. Oops...

Thursday, June 11, 2009

waiting....

The last five minutes before lunch are quite possibly the worst part of the day. There's nothing that can be completed this quickly, but I'm still supposed to be working. So I try to look busy and productive. It doesn't always work out. Like the times when I end up blogging instead.

7 pages of the Honeymoon scrapbook have been completed. Only 43 to go. The whole book has been sketched, and the overall design is done, I just have to put all the pieces together. Finding the time to do this is the problem.

I'm pretty happy that I'm not involved in community theatre this summer. I am already so far behind on practically everything! I can't imagine my state of disaster if I were spending 4 hours a night at rehearsal. I will be selling tickets for Footloose at BSCT, but that will only be 2 weeks and I won't even need to stay the entire evening. Hm. I wonder if I am doing concessions as well.

All right, it's 11:59. Close enough for me! Panera Strawberry Poppyseed Salad deliciousness, here I come! :)

Saturday, June 6, 2009

some people are excited for the day after Thanksgiving.

Not me. I count down the days to a different shopping event - the first weekend in June. It's LAKEWOOD GARAGE SALE DAY, everyone!!!! I am about to depart (waiting on Terra and Kayte to join me), and hope to find many amazing goodies for amazing prices at today's sales. Woohoo! I'm excited. :)

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I hate being sick!

But on the plus side, I get to stay home from work and eat popsicles all day. I guess life could be worse.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I am not cut out for the "Great Outdoors"

I spent about half of my delightful four-day weekend with my foot wrapped in bandages, propped up on pillows. I don't mix well with outdoorsy activities. We were in Osage Beach for Seth and Elisha's wedding over the weekend. I naturally wore a cute (short) dress to the wedding and ended up with 8 or so large mutant bug bites on my legs. We stayed at a house on the Lake that belongs to Andrew's mom's friend. All was fine and well until I tripped up a stone staircase and ripped off about half of the underside of my right big toe. It bled, was disgusting, and hurt terribly. It was also pretty hard to walk until I got used to balancing on the side of my foot. I'm just counting down til it's healed enough that I can exercise again. I feel like a slob. Meh.

Anyway, other than that catastrophe, the weekend was lovely. Very pretty wedding, long car trip with my hubby, chocolate after my foot disaster, and lots of lazing about at home watching movies and like half of Bones Season 1. I finished the Ms. Scrooge DVD, which has been a lingering project since last November. I had lunch with Laura at Panera and then went on a mad shopping spree at Archiver's - the most amazing scrapbooking store! It's a really good thing the closest store is nearly an hour away from me. I would spend so much money there if I visited on a regular basis! Anyway, I got tons of scrapbooking goodness and am now happily page-planning my honeymoon scrapbook. I hope to get it finished by the end of June!! :)

Since I'm spending a lot of time looking at my NYC honeymoon pics, I'm wishing we had an upcoming New York trip. I've spent all of 9 days there in my lifetime, but it still feels like a second home.

This week promises to be a little less crazy. Just working and trying to get caught up on all the projects. It seems that every time I finish something, three more things pop up that suddenly must be completed. I do have hope that one day I will be actually really caught up.

In other news, I seem to have lost a $50 Bed Bath and Beyond giftcard. I'm rather unhappy about that.

And that's life! Thanks for listening. Must run... have to get back to the crazy madness we like to call "Summer Reading Program at the Library." Summertime is here!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

sometimes childhood memories are best left unvisited...


Andrew and I had a fun little mini-vacation on Monday/Tuesday. We landed a paid gig as actors in a Murder Mystery dinner at Tan-Tar-A resort in Osage Beach. Murder Mystery USA, the company we worked with, is based in California and they sent out an email requesting local actors for their one-night murder mystery dinner. We haven't actually received payment yet, but we are supposed to receive compensation for our time and travel. They also picked up the tab for our nice 7th-floor, balcony, lake-view resort room. Anyway, GREAT experience! I "killed" Andrew with a ballpoint pen during the event and then had a pretty dramatic hysterical widow scene. It was my official first "stage cry" - so I was pretty thrilled! Overall, the event was just really fun. The premise was that we were on staff at the resort, and so we spent the night making our way around the tables, conversing with the people, refilling their drinks, trying to fit in with everyone... It was such fun! The guys in charge of the event told us that the company will keep our names in their file and call us again for future events - there's one in Excelsior Springs in the fall, so I'm hoping we get a call!!

While at the Lake, we had a few other adventures as well. The highlights included...



  • Mini-golf at Pirates Cove Adventure Golf - we did the Blackbeard course and I got a hole-in-one!!! That has never happened before, so I was thrilled. I was jumping up and down like a child. The water was dyed bright Kool-aid blue - interesting, but also a little freaky. The whole course seemed to be trying to get you to knock your golf ball in the water. While we came close several times, we managed to avoid this catastrophe.

  • The Osage Beach outlet mall!! I got my shopping fix at Gap (new hoodie because my wonderful favorite perfect hoodie has a huge grease stain on the front and I was unable to wear it!), Gymboree (sweet baby girl clothes for a friend who is expecting!), and Icing (cute necklace to wear to Seth and Elisha's wedding on Saturday).


  • Huge amounts of yummy ice cream goodness at Coldstone. I had the Oreo Overload in a chocolate-and-sprinkle dipped waffle bowl. I ate about 3 bites of the bowl and maybe half of the ice cream before I felt so incredibly full I could not continue. :\ Andrew had a more reasonable regular plain bowl of Cookie Doughn't You Want Some and naturally finished all of it.


However - one of the most memorable events from the trip would have to be our Tuesday late morning brunch. There was no continental breakfast at the resort, and by the time we left our room at 11am, all the on-site restaurants had stopped serving breakfast. So we drove around the city, looking for somewhere to eat. We happened upon a restaurant where we both could recall fond childhood memories...


Yes, Shoney's. If you're like me - or like I was before yesterday - you think that all Shoney's restaurants have closed down and ceased to exist. And welll...if they haven't already, then they should. We eagerly followed the crowds of senior citizens into the building, hoping for some delicious food and fun memories from long-ago days. All we got was a lot of really icky buffet food, nasty water, and a general unpleasant feeling from all those around us. This was quite possibly one of the WORST restaurant choices we have ever made, and we have vowed it will never happen again.


We head back to the Lake again this Friday night for Seth and Elisha's wedding - and we're off work Saturday-Tuesday! I'm definitely looking forward to the long weekend. Hoping for some time to relax, catch up on projects, and hey, maybe even get in some scrapbook time. Hey, I can always dream. :)


Monday, May 11, 2009

I promise one day I'll stop the constant complaining!

Some days I wish I had no hobbies. Or projects. Or part-time teaching jobs. Most people think the weekend is a time for relaxing, spending time doing little or nothing, partying, hanging out, just general fun, low-key, no-stress stuff. My weekends don't work that way.

Thursday-Sunday were a complete whirlwind. In the midst of all the plans mentioned in my last note, I was also trying to make about 10 props for my AGDT performance (coming up this Saturday, May 16!), thrift store and garage sale scavenge for shoes for the drama kids who have outgrown my stash of little-girl shoes, catch up on laundry (I think I have 2 loads waiting still), and clean the house (kitchen...half done, master bath...done, spare bath.......well, at least the floor is clean). Between housekeeping, teaching, volunteering (willingly or otherwise) at the theatre, and working at the library, I kind of feel like I have 4 full-time jobs.

It's 11:55 Monday morning. I am so tired. I rolled out of bed at 7:20 and somehow managed to clock in at work at 8:02 (yes, I showered, partially blow-dried my hair, and even applied makeup). I'm leaving in 5 minutes to take my literally stuffed-to-the-roof car to the church to unload all the AGDT costumes and props for today's dress rehearsals. Then it's back to work for AG book club. Here's hoping I get a decent amount of sleep whenever I finally get to crawl in bed tonight!!!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

It was a beautiful, dreary morning....

It was the perfect day for sleeping in...which is what I did. Apparently my alarm didn't go off. I woke up 10 minutes before I was supposed to be at work, so now I will be staying until 5:30pm. yay. Unfortunately the rain has stopped. I love dreary days, and it's starting to look like it's going to be sunny again. *sigh*

Last night was productive. I made *4* cards! This is quite the accomplishment for me. It's my goal to make dozens of glorious, beautiful cards and have them ready and waiting to be sent out at my every whim... Well, 1 of the 4 from last night has no definite purpose. I guess 1 is better than nothing. I am making progress.

My mom sewed me an adorable colonial costume for one of my AGDT plays this semester. I have very few things to costume Felicity's time period, so I decided it's time to start expanding the collection. Especially since I have another Felicity play in my summer drama session this year! One of these days I will get a sewing machine, have loads of free time, and sew costumes myself. Until then, I am perfectly content to let Mom sew everything for me.

We're getting ready for a busy weekend... Tonight I am doing dinner and a movie with Terra, while Andrew is running lights for Sisters Rosensweig at BSCT, tomorrow night we're seeing CYT's HONK! Jr. because several of my drama kids are involved, Saturday night we're seeing You're a Good Man Charlie Brown at VanHorn Highschool, and Sunday we have the final performance of Sisters and strike, and it's Mother's Day! Also, somewhere in there, I have a 2-page to-do list that needs to be finished. Wow, seeing all that written down - I realize why I am usually exhausted!

Til next time...

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

brand new blog...so much potential...so little time.

Once upon a time ago, I posted on xanga on an almost-daily basis. I had a great following. Ahh, those were the days. Then suddenly, one of us discovered facebook! It took awhile, but the whole xanga crowd flocked to facebook and we have since that time been quite happy with our facebook communication options.

But I realized recently, as I was looking through old posts on xanga, and looking through some photo albums as I worked on organizing my scrapbook room, that I MISS BLOGGING. I miss having an outlet for my thoughts, crazy inspirations, and yes, occasional random hysterical rantings. Facebook statuses are limited to what? 50 words? How can anyone convey all their thoughts in so little space?

(about now, those who used to follow me on xanga are thinking...wow...now we remember. she's the one with with those terribly long rambling posts!)

Anyway. Maybe this won't last long. Maybe it's just a phase I'm going through. But I'm going to give it a try. And we'll see what happens. Talk to you soon! :)

Friday, May 1, 2009

Contact Me / PR Information

Have a comment or question?  Feel free to get in touch!

E-mail me
directorjewels@gmail.com

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This blog is PR Friendly!
Director Jewels is open to Product Reviews, Giveaways, and Sponsorship!  If you have a product that you think would make my life as a Mom easier - or something that might be of interest to my children, I would love to hear from you!  A current media kit is available upon request. Please feel free to contact me to discuss how we can work together!

I look forward to working with you to promote your product, company, or blog!  I am active on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest - so your product will be shared with my followers on those social media channels as well.

Product Reviews.
I am open to reviewing products that are relevant to myself, my family, and my readers.  I must receive a full-size, non-returnable sample of the product for review.  A written review with a minimum of two photos will be posted within 2-4 weeks of receipt of the product's arrival. Only positive reviews will be posted.  If the product does not meet my standards, I will not post a negative review.  Instead I will contact you to discuss the next step.  When the review is complete, I will email you a link to the post.

Giveaways.
Giveaways may be offered in the form of a physical product or gift certificate for a set amount.  Giveaways are usually offered as part of a product review.  If you are not interested in a review, in most cases, I still ask that you provide me with a product or certificate of equal value.  Giveaways will run for 1-2 weeks unless you request a different amount of time.  I am flexible and would like to meet your needs.  If offering a product, I ask that you please ship the giveaway prize directly to the winner.  I will provide you with the winner's mailing address once the giveaway has ended.

Advertising.
Sidebar advertising is available to purchase at a monthly rate. Send me an e-mail with your ad request or question! Ads show for 30 days. If you are interested in purchasing 3 consecutive months (or more) up front, please email me for a discount. All links will be no-follow.

In the Spotlight - $30
250x250 Banner Ad
 This ad will be featured at the top of my Sponsor section. Only ONE ad will be displayed each month! Includes 2 Facebook and Twitter shout-outs per month of advertisement.

Leading Lady - $20
250x125 Banner Ad

This ad will be featured under the Spotlight ad. Up to 4 ads will be shown at a time. Includes 1 Facebook and Twitter shout-out per month of advertisement.

Chorus Girl - $15
125x125 Banner Ad
This ad will be featured under the Leading Lady and Spotlight ads. Up to 10 ads will be shown at a time.

Understudy - Free!
125x125 Banner Ad
If you are a writer with a blog similar to Director Jewels, I'd be happy to swap ads with you for a month for free! E-mail me for details. 

You can view my Disclosure Policy here.

Disclosure Policy

Disclosure:
This policy is valid from 09 November 2012

This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me. For questions about this blog, please contact Julie (directorjewels at gmail dot com).

This blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation. This blog abides by word of mouth marketing standards. We believe in honesty of relationship, opinion and identity. The compensation received may influence the advertising content, topics or posts made in this blog. That content, advertising space or post will be clearly identified as paid or sponsored content.

Products that I post about or link to within a post are things that I have purchased myself and were not received for free, unless clearly stated. However, please assume that any link to the product within the post is an affiliate link, which means I could profit from the purchase of the product.  Any opinion on a product is written without regard for whether or not I will profit from its sale. I do have integrity, and I would never intentionally steer my readers towards a product that is not worthy of their attention.  My experience with a product is not necessarily typical of all experiences with the same product. I cannot be held liable if results differ from what is stated in my posts.

The owner(s) of this blog is not compensated to provide opinion on products, services, websites and various other topics. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the blog owners. If we claim or appear to be experts on a certain topic or product or service area, we will only endorse products or services that we believe, based on our expertise, are worthy of such endorsement. Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer or provider.  This blog does not contain any content which might present a conflict of interest.

Julie is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.



To get your own policy, go to http://www.disclosurepolicy.org

About Me


If you've found my little corner of the blog world, hello and thanks for being here!  My name is Julie, though I occasionally answer to "Jewels" as well.  I'm a work-at-home mom who used to be a librarian and community theatre enthusiast.  I run a private drama studio out of my house, write for others, do some Virtual Assistant work, sell on Etsy (more on that below), and really don't get a lot of sleep. Jesus is my rock and my redeemer - and without Him, I'd have a whole lot of nothing.

My son Lincoln was born in February 2011 and his little sister Adelaide followed in November 2012.

I used to have a lot of hobbies and projects that actually were completed, but these days you'll find me picking up endless toy cars and trucks, getting ready for consignment sales, watching Disney Jr., and handling toddler emotions.  And sometimes I totally freak out when nothing is getting accomplished at all.

I love hearing from readers, so feel free to leave me a comment or send me an email!  If you're interested in advertising or featuring your product/service at Director Jewels, hop over to my PR page for more info! 

Etsy
When I was a kid, my best friends and I designed toys with yarn and created an assortment of paper-crafted food items - for Beanie Babies.  We marketed these at our mothers' garage sales and made an occasional sale.  Following that success, I have recently opened my very own Etsy shop! Visit Adelaide's Attic by Director Jewels to find a variety of non-Beanie Baby inspired items, such as headbands and hair flowers, tie onesies, plush toys, and really whatever strikes my fancy. Use code DJBLOGREADER for 10% off your purchase - just because I'm happy you're here!


Some of My Favorite Posts
-Lincoln's Birth Story
-Adelaide's Birth Story
-Super Mario Inspired Nursery
-Breastfeeding is Hard
-Why I Chose To Deliver At A Birth Center
-'Fessing Up: I'm Not Proud of Today
-A Different Sort of To-Do List
-A Letter to the Mom Whose Kids Don't Sleep
-Dear Mom Who Can't Quite Do It All

Birthday Partying
-Lincoln's 1st Birthday - Nintendo Super Mario Bros. 1-Up
-Lincoln's 2nd Birthday - Mickey Mouse Clubhouse
  DIY Invitations | Toddler Food Ideas | Printable Party Signs | DIY Goody Bags | DIY Banner
-Lincoln's 3rd Birthday - Firetrucks
 Decorations and Food | DIY Fire Fighter Game
-Lincoln's 4th Birthday - Octonauts
Party Food Ideas | Party Favors | Decoration Ideas | Sea Anemone Pipe Cleaner Craft | Free Printable Food Signs

-Addie's 1st Birthday - Purple & Turquoise Owls
-Addie's 2nd Birthday - Tea for "2" with Winnie the Pooh
Decoration and Food Ideas | DIY Garden Marker Signs

Giveaway Policy

I love to share great products with my readers in the form of giveaways!  Here are a few details to explain how my giveaway process works.

WHO CAN ENTER:
U.S. citizens age 18 and over (unless otherwise stated).

HOW TO ENTER:
Giveaways are powered by Rafflecopter.  Instructions will be included in the Rafflecopter form.  Please note that you may need to have JAVA enabled in order to see the form. There is never any purchase necessary to enter giveaways, although occasionally you may be able to earn bonus entries by making a purchase.  Currently the mandatory entry for giveaways is to follow this blog via Google Friend Connect.

ADDITIONAL ENTRIES: 
These may include: easy entries for fans of Director Jewels and/or the giveaway sponsor on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and others.  All additional entries are listed in the Rafflecopter form.  None of these entries are required to win - you may complete as few or as many as you wish.

WINNERS:
Winners are selected with Rafflecopter using random.org (unless otherwise stated).  Winning entries will always be verified - if you did not complete the entry as required, you will be disqualified and we will choose another winner. Winners will be emailed within 72 hours of the giveaway's close and have 48 hours (unless otherwise stated) to respond before another winner is chosen. Readers may win one giveaway every two weeks. Taxes on the giveaways are the sole responsibility of the winner.

Director Jewels cannot be held responsible for late or misdirected entries, entry errors, or transmission problems. Director Jewels also reserves the right to terminate the giveaway in the event of technical problems, or to correct typographical or technical errors, or to amend giveaway rules.  Prizes are supplied by the sponsor (unless otherwise stated) and are subject to change.

If you have any questions or comments regarding my giveaways, feel free to email me: directorjewels (at) gmail (dot) com.  You may also read my Disclosure Policy.  If you are interested in sponsoring a giveaway for my readers, please make sure to check out my PR Info Page.

This policy is valid from 7 November 2012.
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