Friday Free-For-All – 01/25/19

Friday Free-For-All

My favorite black leggings have several holes in them. I know, I know, what a first world problem, right? I’ve had them for going on three years now so it’s not like this is unexpected, but I wear these leggings multiple times a week. I got them when I was working at Athleta and still had a sweet discount. I can’t really afford to replace them right now, and I’ve never found a basic black legging that I liked as much. Not having an income is a huge bummer.

I had my first rehearsal for the Disney princess show I’m in on Tuesday. I’m very, very excited for this show, but also feeling a bit nervous because I haven’t been singing regularly for a while, so I’m rusty. Add to that the fact that I’m singing one of the most well-known and challenging songs in the Disney universe (Let it Go), and I’m a bit of a mess. I’m just trying to give myself time to get back in vocal shape and not freak out.

Vera had her six-month well child visit this week. She’s actually already almost seven months old, but our pediatrician is VERY popular and her schedule books up quickly. Our little girl is still a peanut–she’s 17th percentile for weight and 19th for height. Otherwise, though, she’s healthy and thriving and that’s what matters. She’s hitting all of the developmental milestones she should, so we’re happy.

I’m trying to “train” my hair to go longer between washes. One of the runners I follow on IG mentioned this in her stories, so I clicked over to the hairdresser she said she was following. This woman has gone up to 33 days without washing her hair. THIRTY THREE! And it still looked good! I’m not saying I want to go that long between washes (and with my fine hair and greasy scalp, I doubt I could), but right now I have to wash every other day. It’s just not very convenient when I have a lot of hair that takes a while to dry, it’s cold and wintry, and I have a small baby to take care of. If I could get to a place where I wash every three or four days, that would be ideal. Let’s see how it goes! I’m about to get very friendly with dry shampoo. And possibly hats, haha!

Have you ever heard of hair training? How often do you wash your hair?

Friday Free-For-All – 01/11/19

Friday Free-For-All

The #rbdrunstreak2019 is still going strong! I’m now 11 days in and feeling really good. I’m focusing on doing plenty of stretching and rolling, and trying to alternate “longer” runs with single mile days. I definitely feel like my stamina is improving, and I’m starting to feel like a runner again. I like it!

I did a couple of small car “maintenance” projects that have been on my list FOREVER. First, I changed the bulb in the overhead light. You know, the one that turns on when you open the car door? Ours blew a while ago, and it’s crazy how much you actually need that little light during dark winter nights, especially with a baby and all the attendant crap in the car. I also changed the auto-unlock settings. Since we bought our car, the settings have been that when we turn the car off, ONLY the driver’s door automatically unlocks, which is not a big deal, but can be inconvenient, especially, again, with a baby. Nothing is more annoying than trying to open the door to put the car seat in and having the door still be locked. I’m SO HAPPY to have done these two things. The last thing on my list is to get the battery in my fob replaced so I can use the lock/unlock buttons again. That’s another one of those things that becomes kind of important when you’re juggling a car seat, diaper bag, purse, and shopping bags.

Instagram targeted ads totally got me. I ordered a SheFit Apparel Ultimate Sports Bra last week after seeing them advertised. As has been covered pretty much ad nauseum on this blog, I am a busty runner, and have a hard time finding sports bras that cover the nexus of affordability, comfort, and support. The SheFit has pretty awesome fit and support, and a decent price, but I’m having some chafing issues at the moment. Stay tuned for a full review later.

I was cast in a show this week! It’s a Disney princesses and villains cabaret for kids. I am super rusty, so I just went in with zero expectations, more to get the feel for auditioning again and see my friends than with any thought that I might be cast. But lo, and behold, I got it! And I’m singing Let it Go from Frozen and Mother Knows Best from Tangled. No pressure, right? I can’t wait for rehearsals to start!

Have you ever changed the settings on your car or changed a bulb yourself?

The FOMO is Real

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I don’t suffer too much from FOMO as far as social events go. I’m a bit of an introvert, and usually I’m pretty happy to just be hanging out at home with my cats and my husband. I’m generally happy when plans fall through or people bail, because it means I don’t have to put on pants and a bra and leave the house.

The only things I get true FOMO about are shows. Namely, shows that I want to audition for but somehow don’t work with my schedule, or could have auditioned for and didn’t and now I’m missing out on the experience. This FOMO is what has led to me doing two shows back-to-back on numerous occasions, even when I was exhausted and it probably would have been better to just take a season off.

As I contemplate our (hopefully) impending pregnancy, I’m ALREADY obsessing over the shows and theatre opportunities I might miss. For instance, Lyric Theatre Company’s fall show A Christmas Story the Musical is auditioning right now. The music is by Pasek and Paul, of Dear Evan Hansen and Dogfight fame. There’s a GREAT part for me. And the rumor mill is suggesting that audition turnout hasn’t been that great, meaning that I stand a very strong chance of getting the part I want. SO TEMPTING. Obviously I’m not auditioning because hello I need a break. But this is just the tip of the iceberg.

What if a local company does a show I really, really love while I’m 6 months pregnant, or I’ve got an infant child dependent on breast milk? I live in a relatively small city in a small state and some opportunities literally only come up once in a lifetime. I only have so many years left where it’s feasible for me to be cast in RENT, or The Last Five Years. Dogfight is a perfect example–it was the first time the show had ever been performed in Vermont, and due to the fact that it’s a small, not well-known show that never made it to Broadway, it might be YEARS before it’s produced in the area again, if ever, at which point, I will be too old to play Rose. I got lucky on this one.

I just can’t seem to shut off the nagging voice in my head that’s telling me to run out RIGHT NOW and audition for anything and everything I can until I’m too pregnant to pass as non-pregnant. I’m exhausted and burned out and have SO MUCH TO DO but I can’t help but think “What if I don’t get to do another show for a year? Two years? THREE YEARS?” I play mind games with myself, like, “You might not even get pregnant the first month. Or second. Or third. You could totally do a show this fall.” Which is INSANE! Cause if I do get pregnant right away, I’d be working a full time job AND rehearsing 15+ hours a week during my first trimester. That sounds terrible. But then, that devil’s advocate again. “If you don’t get pregnant by January, you can TOTALLY audition for the spring show.” I can’t stop.

Obviously, starting a family is my priority, and once you have a child/children, you’re simply going to miss some things. That’s how it goes. I get it. I’m sure once I have my own actual child, I will be a lot less worried about FOMO and more worried about keeping said child clean and fed and happy than “Oh, man, I could be rehearsing 20 hours a week right now.” I firmly believe that having children won’t preclude me from pursuing my passions. I have a loving, supportive husband who wants me to do what makes me happy. We are a team, so it’s not like I have to worry about, “Oh, well Ben can’t handle the kids without me.” That’s silly. It will just take some time to adjust to life with children. And I truly can’t wait. I just need to tell the FOMO to kindly shut the hell up.

Do you ever suffer from Fear of Missing Out? How do you handle it?

Dogfight Post-Mortem

Whew. Three weeks of shows for Dogfight the musical have come to an end, and I’ve got SO MANY thoughts and feelings, so I decided to do a little post-show brain dump.

As I’ve already said a couple of times, this rehearsal process was not that great. I was so, so excited for this show, and pretty much every rehearsal had me doubting that it was ever going to come together. Mercifully, it did, and the end product actually turned out to be pretty good in spite of all of the crap, which is great. As always, a show ending is bittersweet. I’ll miss the music. I’ll miss my friends. I’ll miss performing. But BOY am I ready for a break.

This experience really threw some things into focus for me. I have a good friend who talks a lot about process vs product. Sometimes, it doesn’t matter how crappy the process is because the product is so good. And sometimes, the process is so crappy that it totally sours the product. Or the product isn’t super great but you have lots of fun working on it. In the case of Dogfight, we ended up with a good product, but the process sucked.

Going through this made me realize that I’m really, really over committing myself to projects that aren’t challenging and fulfilling. Yes, the music for this show was amazing, and I’m really glad I got to sing it, but I’m not sure that all the time I spent being stressed out, frustrated, and anxious was really worth it. Not to mention all of the time spent driving to and from Stowe, and the money I spent on gas, costume pieces, and makeup. Maybe it’s not for me to say, but I feel like I’m ready to be consistently performing at a higher level, and not just taking every opportunity that comes my way. At Stowe, I’m a big fish in a tiny pond, but I feel like I’m capable of being a medium-to-big fish in a bigger pond.

Unfortunately, this decision that my time and talent are worth more is coming a bit late, in the sense that I’m likely on the cusp of taking a fairly long break from performing in order to try and start a family. All I can hope is that there are better opportunities for me when I get back to it. I’m also already feeling the FOMO for all of the shows I may miss due to pregnancy and having a child. Expect a post expanding on this soon.

Until the next audition, I definitely plan to do all I can to keep improving. It’s really expensive, but I’m hoping to get back to voice lessons this fall, and maybe a dance class too. In order to do CrossFit, voice lessons, and dance classes, I will definitely need to do some pretty serious budget-trimming, but I’m ready to make the commitment, both in time and money, to things I’m passionate about.

On that note, as I teased in my July wrap up post, I have officially joined the PR and Development Committee for Lyric Theatre Company. I’ve been doing shows with them since 2002, and while I genuinely love and appreciate the organization for all it has given me and the community, there are of course things about how they operate that I think could be better. And rather than just bitching about it, I think it’s time I get more involved and actually work within the organization to help make it better. It will be nice to maintain an active role in the organization even if I’m not able to perform for a while.

Friday Free-For-All – 08/04/17

Photo Jul 14, 10 05 37 AM

Holy crap it’s August. I mean, seriously. I know I say this pretty much every month, but I feel like July didn’t even really happen. I’m not happy about the fact that summer is almost over already. Boooooo.

It’s the last week of shows for Dogfight. We’ve got one tonight, and one more tomorrow. This show ending is even more bittersweet than usual. Bitter because I love the music and show so much, and because this may be my last show for quite some time if we get pregnant. Sweet because the rehearsal process was so frustrating, and I’m EXHAUSTED from doing two shows in a row. I’m just trying to enjoy every last minute. On that note…

My bestie and her husband are coming to see the show tomorrow! Mandy and Vinny live in Jersey, so I only get to see them once or twice a year. They’re making the 6+ hour trek up to see Dogfight tomorrow night and I’m so excited and so grateful. I can’t wait to see them!

Ben is officially on the last leg of his whirlwind summer tour. He’s currently in Prague visiting his sister Emily, and he’ll be home for good on the 10th. And I can’t. Freaking. Wait. Of course I’m happy that he got to enjoy his summer break and have lots of adventures, but I missed him! And I’m also very excited to go get pre-approved for a mortgage and start house hunting in earnest. Whee!

I know this is really silly, but I have recently had a delightful string of celebrity interactions on Twitter and Instagram. Or, people I consider celebrities. Specifically, Broadway stars. One of my idols, Stephanie J Block, replied to my tweet about her upcoming Live from Lincoln Center performance. Caesar Samoyoa, a member of the cast of Come From Away, replied to my response to his tweet about the new immersive Star Wars experience coming to WDW. And Mamie Parris, who is playing Grizabella in Cats on Broadway, liked a comment I made on one of her Instagram photos. It’s SO INDESCRIBABLY CHEESY, I know, but I love it nonetheless.

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Happy Friday!

 

 

July 2017 Wrap Up

CrossFit
I am missing CrossFit fiercely at the moment. I only made it to 5 classes this month, which I think is a record low since I started. I probably should have prorated my membership for July, but by the time I thought of it, it was too late. And honestly, I truly thought I’d go more. Ah well.

I’m really ready and excited to get back to going to class regularly once Dogfight wraps up. I think I can re-commit to going to the 5 pm class M-W-F like I was during 9-5 rehearsals, no excuses.

Running
In spite of how busy I was, this was actually a decent running month. I got in 6 runs for a total of 29 miles, including two 6+ mile long runs. Until July, I hadn’t run more than 5 miles since November 2016, so I consider that a win.

I’m still hoping to run the Charlotte Covered Bridges Half Marathon on September 9, but it will totally depend on two things: 1) not blowing my August budget, and 2) completing at least one 10+ mile long run. Both of those things are doable, I just need to make the race a priority. And with Dogfight wrapping up in a few days, I will be WAY less busy.

Theatre
I’ve gotten through two weeks of shows for Dogfight the musical, and tonight kicks off the third and final week of performances. I’m excited because lots of people I know will be coming this week, including my aunt and cousin, and my best friend and her husband who are driving up from New Jersey for the weekend.

You can expect a longer post expanding on this next week, but in short I’ll say that this show has made me think A LOT about my priorities when it comes to theatre and performing. I am more than ready for a break after doing two shows in a row, but also have some FOMO settling in because this may be my last show for quite some time if our plans to get pregnant soon come to fruition.

Also, I’m strongly considering joining one of the various committees for Lyric Theatre. They are without a doubt the largest, most well-funded, best organized community theatre organization in my area, and if I can’t be on stage, I’d love to stay involved in other ways and help to make some changes and improvements that I’ve seen a need for over my 10+ years being involved. I’d like to join either the Membership or Development committees, and plan to reach out to the heads of both to find out when they meet and what responsibilities I could expect. Stay tuned!

Highlight
I think my favorite day this month was the 4th of July. I got to be in the Stowe parade, and then spent the day with my new good friends, Brita and Doug. They plied me with delicious cider and tasty food, we chatted, I got a sunburn, and we watched the fireworks. If it hadn’t been for them, I likely would have spent the day at home, missing Ben. Instead, I had a really fun day, and solidified some new friendships that I’m really excited about.

Lowlight
If I’m counting correctly, I only saw Ben seven total days this month. It was definitely hard to be apart so much, but I’m grateful that for much of the time he was gone, I was very busy with the show, so it wasn’t as bad as it could have been. And now he’s on the final leg of his crazy travel schedule, and all will be well.

July Goals
As a refresher, my goals for July were:

  • Stick to “no booze Monday-Thursday” rule–yes
  • Go to CF at least twice a week–no

Unfortunately, this month just kicked my ass. I was so busy I barely had time to eat full meals let alone get to CF more than a handful of times. Still, I’m impressed with what I managed, particularly sticking to my no booze rule, and adding in the “no treats” piece as well. Surprisingly, I’m having a fairly easy time sticking to my guns on those rules, and not feeling like I’m missing out on anything. For instance, there were donuts in the kitchen at work yesterday, and I didn’t have one. If you know me, you know that is some SERIOUS will power.

August Goals

  • Stick to “no booze and no treats Monday-Thursday” rule
  • Go to CF at least twice a week, preferably three
  • Run at least twice a week

Nothing too crazy for August. Mostly just trying to re-establish “normal” after a month of insanity. It will be nice to get back to a routine, not to mention eating regular meals at home again!

Does it usually take you a while to get back to “normal” after a busy period, or do you just jump right back in?

Gearing Up For Show Week #2

Hey friends! I have gotten lots of sleep, exercise, and Ben time since last Wednesday’s post, and I’m feeling much more like myself.

The first week of shows was a bit rocky, but by the fourth show on Saturday it felt like we’d found our stride. I was completely exhausted after 7 straight days of rehearsals and shows, but I had all day Sunday off, plus Monday and Tuesday evenings.

On Sunday, I got out for a 10k long run (which I live blogged in my IG stories, which seemed to be a hit), and then Ben and I spent the afternoon hiking a steep trail on Mt. Mansfield. We got creemees on the way home, and had a nice supper with his folks before lights out at 9:30 pm.

Monday night was another restful night, with a roast chicken dinner and Rogue One on Netflix before another early bedtime.

Last night I hit up my first CrossFit class in almost two weeks, and then Ben and I did one more date night before he takes off on the second-to-last trip of the summer. We went to our member’s club, St. John’s Club, for an al fresco dinner on the patio, and then watched Sherlock together in our PJs. It was easy, cheap, and a perfect way to spend our last night together before he heads off for another week and a half.

Tonight kicks off the second weekend of shows for Dogfight, and after taking several days of vocal rest, I’m feeling ready to get back on stage. Even though I didn’t expect it to, this show has felt every bit as vocally demanding as Chess, even though the style of singing is a lot less difficult. Maybe it’s because I have more lines? Who knows. Regardless, I’m ready to kick some ass tonight.

Isn’t it amazing what some extra sleep and down time can do?

Friday Free-For-All – 07/14/17

Photo Jul 14, 10 05 37 AM

Have I mentioned lately that I miss Ben? Yeah, I miss him. He was home for approximately 24 hours on Sunday into Monday, and then promptly took off for the next leg of his crazy, jam-packed summer. The first week was sort of, “Meh, whatever, I can deal.” But this week was a lot harder. And this is just the beginning. I will maybe see him for a few hours this weekend, and then won’t see him again until the 22nd. Ugh.

Things with Dogfight are slowly but surely improving. It’s no longer the train wreck I feared it would be, and we still have 3 more rehearsals before we open. I’m just still very nervous about playing guitar onstage and singing at the same time. We may have someone play backstage while I pretend to play, but I’m not sure how much better that will be. Also, I change ON STAGE not once but twice, once WHILE singing, so yeah, I have a lot of stuff to figure out. Oy. Speaking of Dogfight…

We did another live TV promo like I did for Chess. I had to stay overnight in Stowe and get up at 4:15 am to do some live promotional segments on our local news station. I know it’s an important thing to get the word out, but man, live TV is terrifying, having my face and voice on the internet forever is terrifying, and doing it before I’ve even finished a cup of coffee just isn’t fair. If you’re interested in seeing/hearing me sing some stuff from the show, click here!

I am so. freaking. tired. Tonight will be my first night off all week, and I can’t wait to go home and just do NOTHING. The whole fam is away at the family reunion in Maine, so I’m home alone again with the animals. I woke up at 4 am after a loud noise, convinced there was someone in the house, and lay there panicking for a solid 15 minutes before realizing Creemee was just going to town on her scratching post. Oof. I’m sleeping forever tomorrow. FOREVER.

 

June 2017 Wrap Up

CrossFit
Still loving it, though I didn’t get to class anywhere near as much as I would have liked this month. I’m having a tough time just making the commitment to go. I ALWAYS feel better after class and I’m always glad I went, but sometimes it’s just hard to get myself out the door to go.

My box recently transferred ownership, and it’s been interesting. The class formats have DEFINITELY changed, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it’s just different. And maybe a tiny bit harder than it used to be. But the new owners are people who’ve been members at the box for years, so at least they’re people I know and feel comfortable with.

Running
Not much running around here this month. I got out four times for a total of 17 miles, which isn’t terrible, but I’d really hoped to get back into a regular running routine and hit at least 30 miles total.

The real struggle right now is where we live. It’s a super hilly area on a busy street, so running at home can be challenging. My weekday evenings are full with CrossFit and/or rehearsal, so my best option is running on my lunch break. But if it’s super hot or rainy, I don’t run. I’m hoping that July will be a bit better, but I’m about to get super busy with Dogfight, so we’ll see.

Yoga
Still no yoga, boo. It’s too hot, and I’m just too dang busy.

Theatre
Unfortunately, things haven’t been going super well with Dogfight. From the get-go, it’s been slow going, with a lot of cancelled or abbreviated rehearsals due to scheduling SNAFUs. And then just last weekend, the director had emergency hernia surgery and had to cancel more rehearsals. We’ve got less than 10 rehearsals left before we open and I am NERVOUS. I know all I can do is show up and do my best, but I just hate being involved in something where not everyone is giving their all. We also haven’t had any costume fittings (or even gotten our measurements taken?), and I JUST got a working guitar to practice the parts I have to play and sing onstage.

Not every experience can be sunshine and rainbows, but this rehearsal process has showed me how spoiled I am after working with Lyric Theatre so much lately. They’ve got a much larger budget and are so much better organized than other community theatre organizations that everyone else just doesn’t stack up. It’s also making me realize that it just may not be worth my time and effort to work with Stowe Theatre Guild again, which is unfortunate, as they’re one of the few community theatre organizations that does summer shows.

Anyway, there’s still time, and who knows what might happen between now and July 19. I’m trying to keep a positive attitude.

Highlight
My trip to San Francisco was definitely the highlight of the month. Three days just wasn’t long enough, but we packed at least a week’s worth of activities in, and I had a total blast. I can’t wait to go back.

Lowlight
Ben left for leg number one of his crazy summer travel schedule. I’ve only talked to him once since he left on Saturday, and won’t see him for more than a couple of days at a time until mid-August. I miss him!

June Goals
As a refresher, my goals for June were:

  • Run at least once a week (5 times total)–nope
  • Go to CF at least twice a week (8 times total)–nope
  • Take the Honda to the dealership to deal with the airbag recall–nope

Whomp whomp. Not a great month goal-wise, but that’s ok. I refuse to let not hitting these be something I’m ashamed of or worried about. They’re there to help me, not to make me feel bad.

July Goals

  • Stick to “no booze Monday-Thursday” rule (you can expect a post on this soon)
  • Go to CF at least twice a week

I’m keeping it simple this month. Dogfight rehearsals are ramping up, and the show opens on the 19th, so I don’t expect to have a lot of free time between now and when the show closes August 5th. I’m just trying to stay relatively healthy and active.

Friday Free-For-All – 06/23/17

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I’m off to San Francisco! I’m taking a half day from work today and flying out this afternoon. I probably won’t be posting much here, but you can follow my adventures on Instagram. I’ll be back home some time on Tuesday night.

I’m a packing ninja. I bought United “basic economy” tickets, which means I don’t get a free carry on bag for my flights. Because buying last-minute tickets was already so expensive, I didn’t want to pay the extra $25 per flight for a bag. This means that I packed everything I need for a 3 day, 4 night trip to San Francisco in a backpack. Are you impressed? Cause I know I am!

Today is Ben’s first day of summer vacation. And he’s such a good husband, he got up early to drop me off at work so I wouldn’t have to pay for airport parking. While I’m madly jealous of his summer, I know he worked is ass off this school year, and deserves the break. Now, someone remind me of that later this summer while he’s gallivanting around Prague and I’m stuck here…

If you’re interested in a sneak peek at Dogfight the Musical you’re in luck! Stowe Theater Guild’s promotion team is killing it this year, and they made a great little video, which you can view by clicking right here. It’s our first time running through Act 1 with the accompanist so it’s a little rough, but many of you have asked for more video of me in action, so here you go!

Do you tend to overpack for trips? I usually do, but this time around I had to FORCE myself to pack light.