I will begin this blog by telling Shay that I forgive her for ruining that puppy's emotional stability and I'm sure it will be fine with months of training and rehab...just kidding. =) As someone mentioned to Shay, and is absolutely correct, Shiba Inu's enjoy the dramatic lifestyle. Shay, don't get one. My professional recommendation: get a Corgi, you would love one.
This week has been nothing less than STRESSAGEDDON! I have unfortunately WAY slacked in my French studies due to working 6 days a week and having my niece and nephew in town visiting for a week. I'm learning that I simply HAVE to make myself go to bed earlier, and therefore get up earlier in order to have time to study. I cant retain information at night when I'm tired, so I quit trying. Over the last month or so, I've somehow successfully cut out every sliver of "me time" I had, and have filled it with work. This has always been a pattern for me. When I get stressed out, I work....and work and work and work. I know that once I stop moving, it's going to be hard to get running again without a significant chunk of rest, and if I know I can't afford to rest yet, I avoid it like the plague. Unfortunately, this evolves into a fairly unhealthy cycle and I end up filling every waking moment with work, thinking, "Oh, I'll have a few hours this weekend..." I'm really concentrating on slowing down. I know my body needs it, and in order to achieve my goal, I'm going to have to modify things. I oftentimes connect "slowing down" with "being lazy," which is completely incorrect. I have to keep reminding myself that I'm not an ambitionless slug, I just have to make room for the other goals I want to pursue. -------------------To read more of Kaylynn's posts, click here.
Hey Everyone! So sorry I've been MIA! I was in Haiti this past week and it was an AMAZING experience. I will post more on that later-trying to get back into real life! I start back on the HCG drops on Friday. I cant wait! I've only gained back 6 of the 28 pounds i lost from my first round. I call that success since I have been actually eating like crap. I'm excited to forge forward, starting at this new, lower weight. Yippee! ok, gotta go, I will post more next week! xoxo
This week, I wrote several pages, kept my writing hours fairly consistent, and dropped a puppy at the pet store. (I can hear Kaylynn unfriending me on facebook right about now.)
No, no, really. I brought Ena to a busy pet store and we took out a puppy to play with. As soon as we move (if we ever move), I want to get a dog and so we’ve been playing with puppies of the different breeds that we like. We took out a beautiful baby Shiba Inu—I’ll give you a picture so you can see how horrible of a person I am—and the girls were so busy that they ignored us and the puppy for about 20 minutes. So we played, and played, and played…
Ena was starting to get restless. Puppies are no cats, they’re jumpy and nippy and she can only take so much of one before she gets scared and tries to physically climb out of the cube they put you in. So I was trying to get their attention when I noticed the puppy playing with something that looked like a nail of a dog or a piece of dried poop (both possible and likely options.) She got it in her mouth, so I knelt down and had her under my arm, and was trying to get the poop/nail out of her mouth. Ena was coming a little too close for comfort. I didn’t want her to scare the puppy, so I told her to stay back a little, when bam, the little thing squirted out from under my elbow and dropped about a foot to the floor.
The puppy screamed. I have never heard a dog make that noise in my life. It almost took me a second to register where the noise was coming from. It brought the whole place to a screeching halt of about thirty faces looking at me in horror. I looked at myself in horror. The girls who had disappeared for so long were very quick to snatch up the puppy and look at me scathingly while disappearing to the back with the still screeching dog.
It was like being in a movie. Everyone was dead silent, except Ena who was understandably freaked out and crying. Then there’s that little movement of people trying to move the moment along from being awkward as it gets and they start talking quietly (about me) to the person next to them, and I’m standing there comforting a toddler and wondering the h-e-double-hockey-sticks to do now. No one’s looking at me.
I catch another employee who’s still out there and try to explain what happened. She was nice. “Accidents happen,” she said. “It’ll be fine.” I want to explain that I have three rescue cats, and that I’m the girl that always holds the bunnies for the little kids to pet and dogs love me, and I’m an animal person, and that this is as horrifying to me as it was to those girls in the back who think I’m a total idiot soccer mom, and---and—I have to take Ena to the bathroom to wash her hands. In the bathroom, I overhear that the dog is fine and that she was just scared. No one looks at me.
Ena and I walk around the fish tanks because god forbid we leave without looking at the fish, and she’s blissfully unaware that the entire store thinks we’re monsters. We look at the koi which freak me out since I’ve had a dream that there were koi swimming in my toilet and they tried to eat me when I needed to pee…but we love the koi, because the koi are near the door and we escape into the chilly evening and I cry a little bit in the car masked by Dora counting in Spanish.
It had been awhile since I had been so immersed in an emotion. I couldn't get my mind off of what happened. I’m of a choleric temperament…meaning, I’m pretty blunt, and emotions don’t really rush over me in giant waves. I have ups, I have downs, but they’re not really large either way and they disappear fairly quickly. Personally, I think this is pretty normal. I think wanting to run around being perfectly blissfully happy at all times can actually mess a person up more and make the normality of life seem much worse than it is.
This blog says it well, the quote is by Kurt Vonnegut: “But because we grew up surrounded by big dramatic story arcs in books and movies, we think our lives are supposed to be filled with huge ups and downs! So people pretend there is drama where there is none.” Read more here.
Anyways, it was this moment that made me realize that something in the end of my book was missing. Cygna gives up something pretty major and I realized that she needed a moment to push her into doing it. So, I’m going to plumb the depths of this experience and create a completely different scenario with similar levels of total humiliation to push her into her decision. I needed this moment to see what I was missing.
There’s a verse in the bible that I think of a lot from Romans 8:28, “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” Basically, for anyone who has eyes to see God’s movement in the world, even bad things can be worked around for a good purpose. I'm gonna take this as one of those things.
So, while it was awful, it was also good. And I will not be returning to that pet store for…awhile.Chapter five is here. We're back in Elena's perspective, still on the ship she was traveling on after a terrible crash and Flavia went to see what had happened.
To read Shay's posts from the beginning, click here.
Hello all! Today is the day I post to you the last two parts to my speech I made last Friday. First, some news however. I played a show this Friday, and it was super fun. I may or may not post some video from it. If not, don't fret.
I decided recently that I really want to play a bunch more shows before I go to college. Partly because I realized how much I love performing, and partly because I know I have to if I want more people to hear my music!
Also, I'm using this Spring Break to rest my throat before another long string of performances ruins it.
So there are the updates. Check out the last couple videos!
Truthfully? This week no work was done on my show. It had to take the side chair as I started rehearsals for “Drowsy Chaperone”. However, many of the principles found here on spirespire (in my head I always say that really fast with like a whisper-y tone for emphasis; sometimes I imagine jazz hands crossing in front of my face simultaneously) have started to influence my thinking for the better. For example, at rehearsals for “Drowsy” I am really working towards fearlessness. I try to follow my impulses at rehearsals and try new things everyday. I am noticing that the small voice in my brain that is the “judge” that sometimes tries to tell me “I am not funny enough” or “that didn't sound very good” or “Lexie, you are an idiot” is getting fainter and fainter...as if it is off in the distance on top of a hill trying to scream it's insults at me but I can't hear them because I am being geniusly fearless.
And let me tell you it is quite liberating. I really want to get back to the roots of what made me so in(spirespire)d about this whole blog community in the first place: the simple act of doing something everyday that scares you.
Now granted, I am currently on a plane, my THIRD plane of the day infact with one more to go before I am back in Louisville after less than 6 hours back in NYC...I did wake up at 4:20am to catch my first plane of the day...so I am probably so tired it is the equivalent of drunk typing..HOWEVER this week I am an advocate of fearless living and hope you will consider joining me.
Now, as all my close friends know, I am actually not the most positive of people. Not that I am like a nasty negative Nancy or anything, I am just usually not all rainbows, sunbeams, and unicorns. I consider myself to be quite practical about things and my outlook on situations. So, for those of you reading my post about really “going for what you want” and are not in my same mental page this week, please try not to throw up in your hands and toss it as the screen. I do understand and sometimes to me there is nothing more IMPRACTICAL than an motivational, cliché post about reaching for your dreams. It seems so easy to say or encourage to others, “Yeah do it! You can do it!” but then life gets in the way, or our desire to be “practical.” BUT Here it is. GO for it. This week do one thing that scares you...everyday. I found this quote this week that I thought was incredible and something I definitely found in(spirespire)ing. I promise I will quit with that spirespire joke soon...it's like that recurring joke that wasn't very funny to begin with. Like “old people” humor; and hey I don't mean to offend, although I seriously doubt any “old people” are reading my posts, but like when an older person does some joke like pulling a quarter from behind your ear and everyone does a fake laugh and then an hour later does it to someone else, and you fake laugh again, only even less this time, and by the time he does it a third time it is all you can do to let just air pass through your lips while you desperately fight to raise your cheekbones to maybe make it look like you find it the slightest bit amusing because the quarter trick is SO unfunny. Well, maybe not that bad but you guys totally know what I am talking about. Here's the quote. Have a fab-o weekend and go make your mental blue print!
"Visualize this thing that you want, see it, feel it, believe in it. Make your mental blue print, and begin to build." ------------------------To follow Lexie's story from the beginning, click here.
This has been the song of my week. No, you are not missing out on some hilarious YouTube parody about Twilight, the song is from [title of show] which, for those of you who aren't complete theatre losers like myself, is a musical about people writing a musical. I'm not really a fan of the show that much however, this song seems fitting for my week working on 24HRMusical.
Basically, the song is talking about all those little voices in your head that shower you with negative comments. Those are the vampires. My vampires have been running wild all week filling my head with nonsense. Thankfully, I know it is nonsense but it definitely has been warring on me none the less. Also, I am trying to look at these vampire visits as a good thing because they appeared right after some good news.
Basically, we have been pursuing a building for this little event and quite honestly, it's a dream space. I'm not ready to announce the space just yet due to the fact, we still may not get it, however, I will say that it is 1) a mega church 2) a beautiful stage and 3) a total shot in the dark. I honestly didn't think the pastor would look twice when we approached him about the idea, but low and behold he responded to our email with a request to meet with us and talk it over more.
THAT’S WHEN THE VAMPIRES ATTACKED!
"If you can't meet the very day he asks, he will say no!" "Even if you do meet with him, you are way too young for him to give you a chance." "He's gonna ask a question that you don't know and you'll look like an idiot". The comments go on and on. Thankfully, my wonderful team mate Kat was there to talk me through it and we plan on meeting with the pastor next week! Prayers for that would be great.
In other news, I still have so much to do. Still haven't found the right charity. (Suggestions welcome) Gotta get all the legal jargon taken care of as far as theatrical rights go in a fundraising setting. Need the charity and venue nailed down to release audition information. Gotta film the Opener clip for our YOUTUBE campaigning. The list goes on and on. If I can omit one of these things by next week, I will be a happy camper.
To end on a high note, we do have a date chosen, venue providing. We have one venue that has offered us their space on the date we had hoped for. Show list has been widdled down considerably.
Also, if you would like to help me achieve one goal, we would like to get up to 30 followers on TWITTER this week. www.twitter.com/24HRMusical
Progress is being made, just gotta get those vampires out of the way.
To read Matthew's story from the beginning, click here
An aside from Shay: Kaylynn is doing her post today because of some busy-ness, and Julie is currently in Haiti and will be back to her regular schedule as of next week. Think good thoughts for her (and her gear!) while she's down there!
So, even though my regular posting day is on Mondays, life has been particularly pushy the past few weeks. Things have really started rolling with my new job that I picked up 2 weeks ago, and that combined with my regular work schedule from my first job has made things interesting.
Unfortunately, I've had to take a few days off from my French due to the above mentioned schedule craziness, family coming into town and good, old fashioned absent-mindedness. I'm not stressing over it however, and I'm determined to enjoy my time with family this weekend, take my dog to the park on Saturday and then dive into my French studies again full force. So, nothing all too important to speak of lately, but I'm still chugging along, and still completely enjoying what I do. I'm also currently waiting to hear on some good news that I will disclose at a later date (once I find out some more concrete answers)... -------------------To read Kaylynn's story from the beginning, click here.
I really feel like I have not much of anything to say today. I’ve been writing very little on and off. I’m still a little “blocked” in the writerly fashion. Here’s the deal with writer’s block. It is NOT that I have nothing to write. It is that I have too many choices and my perfectionistic side cannot figure out which one is the best, and therefore….freezes.
The longer you’re frozen, the harder it becomes to melt the fingers and get them moving again. As a friend of mine said on Friday, “it’s like being afraid to drive after a car accident, the longer you go without driving again, the bigger of a deal it becomes--and the harder it becomes to get in the car and make it out of the driveway.”
The funny thing is, I think I know what the best choice is in my situation. I’m now dealing with the choices that come from making that single choice, because lots of things change because of one small instance in a woven world. You rip out one thread, and you begin to realize how many others you pulled loose with that one decision. It’s overwhelming.
So my goal this week is to set “writer’s hours,” a time of day that I sit and write for a certain period of time and when I’m done, I get up and go on about my day. I need to contain it, make it have some ritual to it, and then be done thinking about it. Not prep work, not world building, just forwarding the actual story.
Also, there’s a contest for short stories that I would like to enter for Chicago’s One Book, One Community. DePaul chooses a book to focus on, and each of their special events branches out from that book. This year it’s Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere
and as was established early on in SpireSpire, he’s one of my favorite authors—AND will be in town for an interview and reading at DePaul. The contest is based on speculative and fairy tale fiction, so I’m also going to be using one of my side ideas to write a short story. Perhaps that will help to dislodge some of this block anyways.
That’s all from me today. No chapters—people have been asking for a chance to catch up. Chapter five will roll out next week.
--------------------If you'd like to follow Shay's story from the beginning, click here.
What a good weekend. I'm actually going to leave you guys with a Vlog this week, instead of actually writing about it. What you need to know is this, after the release of Reservation Blankets, the choir director at my highschool, a Grammy award-winning music program, asked me to present to the choir about music in general and what highschoolers can do. So this coincides very well with Spire. Check it out, this is part 1 and 2 out of 4.
Well, this weekend it's goodbye NYC hello Louisville! My month back in New York City has been a whirlwind of auditioning, working on my one woman show, watching a crazy person on the train squat like a frog and wrap unbelievable amounts of toilet paper around his arm mummifying himself, spending time with my best friends, spending time with Matthew, spending way too much money on delicious smoothies, Thai food, and salt bagels toasted with butter... Overall SUCCESS! I met with my pianist today and we have started recording our work sessions so when random inspiration hits we don't miss it. Also, a new addition to my show...I have brought on a director to direct my show! I am so very excited about him. He is hilarious and wonderful and I think it will be great to have an outside eye to reign in my crazy as the show develops.
A few weeks ago I made four mini goals I wanted to achieve while back in NYC for this month. They were:
- Go over all my songs with my pianist.-- I am happy to report that I have gone over SEVERAL songs that are going to be in the show, but truthfully not all.
- Set a venue.-- I have researched several venues and are still narrowing it down.
- Have an outline of the show.--- I have exactly half of the show scripted.
- Title It.-- I have a title, but I am not sold on it 100%.
Basically, I achieved half of every mini-goal. So a solid 50%? I will take it. My guess is if I hadn't set these goals I might not have achieved as much progress in my show. I think that is what this spire project is all about, shooting for something and if you fall short at least you are practicing fearless living.I am personally working on this- enjoying the journey and not being so focused on the end result. In my months of being a “real person” (this is the term I use for those of us no longer in college...and I put it in quotes because who are we kidding? I still spend Saturdays with eye crusties and sitting around in my underwear watching an embarrassing amount of television while slurping down cereal)my post-graduation self is realizing that nothing is as it seems. I think sometimes we build up these moments or events in our head to be these HUGE deals and when the actual time or day comes it is just another day. A great example of this? My high school graduation. It was just another day, except probably more stressful and I argued with my mom for an hour about curling my hair or not because she wanted it “to have some body for the pictures” and I didn't want to “look like Shirley Temple's crack headed older sister.” I digress, the point is I am working on being more present in my process and not letting the moment to moment pass me by because I am too focused on the end result. My final thoughts as I shovel spicy basal fried rice (my third favorite food) into my mouth while blogging? Dang rice, you are so good. And I cannot wait to start Drowsy rehearsals on Monday! ------------------To read Lexie's posts from the beginning, click here.