Monday, July 30, 2012


I have a memory problem lately ... like a big memory problem. If I do not write something down, put it in my calendar, or set a reminder on my phone it just does not get done. Plain and simple. That is not normally how I roll ... not normally. It hit me the other day that this has been since having my hysterectomy. I have deduced that the source of my power was my ovaries. They removed the source of my power and thus removed my memory. I was at an event Saturday and saw a lot of people from high school. With the exception of the people I still am friends with, I could not remember a single one of them. I could have blocked them out of my memory ... let's be honest high school was an awkward time for me ... but all of them?It has been 18 years, but that is kind of ridiculous! There is a new woman in my church congregation that used to live in one of the areas I served as a missionary. I honestly do not remember her or the area. The source of my power is gone! Horrific cramps versus no memories ... nah, I made the right decision. But I think I should write a book similar to What to Expect When You are Expecting ... What to Expect Now That You Have No Ovaries ... the problem is, I cannot remember ...

Thursday, July 19, 2012

That Kind of Friend

After a few days of doing a live performance in the same outfit ... well let us say nicely that costumes start to smell and get makeup on them. So last night we piled all of the Act II costumes into my car so I could wash them. (Act I costumes are dry clean only.) I mentioned that I would take home whatever they needed washed short of their 'unders' because, as I said, "I love you all, but not enough to wash your unders." Kristen told me she loved me enough to wash my unders ... she often tells me that God made dirt, and dirt don't hurt. I admit to having a bit of a germ problem.  So as I was up late washing the laundry I was a-thinkin. Of course I was thinking about it. What else was I going to do until 11:30? In hindsight I could have watched the latest episode of Drop Dead Diva.

Do I really love these girls enough to wash their unders? Yes. Yes I do. Is that what it is really about? No. I try my best to be the kind of friend to others that I want in return. (That includes the snarky and sassy that sometimes comes out of my mouth!!) I want, and have, great friends. Friends I know I can call late at night if I need to REALLY cry or if I have great news to share. I want the kind of friends who I can invite into my messy house (currently) and not feel ashamed of the mess. I want the kind of friends who I can laugh with about nothing in particular and who do not judge me when I think I am funny but really I am not. I want the kind of friends who I think will flip over a little tchotcke I see in a store so I get it for them. I want the kind of friends who believe in the same things as I do, or will not slam my beliefs. I want the kind of friends who love me unconditionally. I want the kind of friends who sing their guts out and do not mind if it is off key. I want friends who will listen to me even if I do not make sense. I want friends who will give advice only as needed. I want friends who love hugs and cheek kisses. I want friends who can put in a movie and fall asleep if they are really tired! I want the kind of friends who laugh, love, and live life to the fullest. 

I have these friends in spades, I love them with all of my heart. So I want to be that kind of friend for them as well. I might not always succeed, but by golly I love my friends! I have a lot of BESTS. I have the best kinds of friends! I have that kind of friend ... the kind of friend I find worthy of being MY friend. I love THAT kind of friend! So YES, Kristen, I would wash your unders because I know you would do that for me. How great would the world be if we all were THAT kind of friend? The kind of friend we want in return, so we were that friend for others. 

I love my friends. I have the best kind of friends!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


I heard a comment that really made me think about appreciation and being grateful for what one has in life. It is not the first time I have contemplated this topic, but I have not been able to put it out of my mind since hearing the comment the other day. I find it interesting that people, myself included, will play the "what if?" game about the past. I play it! What if I had not become a nanny and gone to school instead? What if I had waited until A was off his mission before I left for mine? What if I really had become a drama teacher? What if I had not directed X show and not met X? What if I did not have a hysterectomy? What if I were married? What if we had kids? What if I had been born in England during Pride and Prejudice time ... would the book be about me? What if ... ? What if ... ?

I personally do not think that wondering what would have happened if we had taken a different path in life is a bad thing. Where I think we enter dangerous waters is when we covet a life that is not ours based on the 'what ifs' in life. I do not know a single person who does not wonder what life would be if they were married; I have heard multiple married people tell me how lucky I am to still be single because I can travel and do not have to fight over the toilet paper role, not thinking how it might affect me because I would love to go home every night to someone who loved me. People with 1 kid wish they had more; people with many kids wish they had fewer. Those who own a house complain about doing yard work; those in a condo complain about HOA fees. People with jobs complain about their work environment; people without a job blame it on politicians. The list goes on and on. And on. I am guilty of doing this so I include myself in this ... whatever this is ... telling off ... rant ... vent ... whatever. 

It struck me last night that it is so important to be grateful for what I have. A few weeks ago my work shuffled job responsibilities and I have a new job at work. I had my old job for 13 years and was VERY comfortable doing it. Now I have to learn, and frankly create, a whole new job. The thing is, I am still employed. I never lost my income, I never lost my job security, I did not lose my seniority. But I was not comfortable yet, and frankly still am not, with the unknown of what was happening in my life. The weekend after it happened I was having dinner with a friend who is not employed right now. How could I complain about what was happening to me when he did not know where his futureincome would come from?

I am so thankful for what I have been blessed with in my life. I am not married, I have no children, I will probably never have children; so be careful when you offer me your unruly kid because I will take one of you up on that one day! I think it is alright to be frustrated with some aspects of our lives, however we always will be thankful for the blessings that we do have. I am so blessed to have a family who loves me. I am blessed with a home to live in. I am blessed with food to eat, and money to spend on things I want to. I am so blessed! So the next time I feel the need to complain about rolling over my foot with the set at least I am blessed with feet and the joy of doing a play. The next time I feel the need to complain that I am all alone when I go home at night, at least I have a home to go to and MANY people who love me who happen to not live with me. Being frustrated is one thing, complaining about things is another. There is a line from the musical Aida "If you don't like your fate, change it. You are your own master, there are no shackles on you. So don't expect any pity or understanding from this humble palace slave." It is said to a prince by a slave because he is complaining about his life.  We are indeed the master of our destiny. I believe we choose to be happy or miserable in most instances. (I am not debating the validity of mental illness and hormonal imbalance, which I believe are very real things and can affect our moods; I am strictly talking about finding joy in our lives.) In most instances we can choose to be happy and find joy in this life. As I type this I am looking out my (current) office window at the fluffy clouds and blue sky and it makes me happy! What a wonderful world to experience and find joy in!! Today, I appreciate and am thankful for many things! 

Monday, July 16, 2012

Sucker for a Good Cause

Kids say and do the darnedest things!! I love that they are born good, and have to learn bad things. I do not love that they learn the bad things ... oh you know what I mean. So when a kid comes up with a good idea to earn money for something I am all in! I cannot pass a lemonade stand in the summer without stopping. I usually tip the kid and rarely drink the lemonade. When someone comes selling the cookies, or flags, or wrapping paper, I always make them tell me why they are raising the money, etc. Rarely do I let the parents tell me! If the kid wants my donation, the kid needs to ask me! If a kid wants to spend the money, I think they should earn it.

Well I am making this one time exception because the kid lives an hour north of me, and I do love his concept. My chum Peggy has this kid Jack who cracks me up! When Peggy and I would scrapbook Jack would tell me stories that had me in stitches. Jack came up with an idea, after reading a book in school, to raise money to donate to the local police department to get Kevlar jackets for the K9 unit. It is a summer long project for him, and Jack is selling sno-cones every Thursday to raise this money. Good idea, right? Take what he learned in school, apply it to his life, help his community directly. They live in Clinton and the local PD has Kevlar for their K9 units, but have vowed to used the funds to help their K9 Delta out with other things he needs. I love love this idea. And I am not even a pet person. Midvale has a K9 unit and our dog was shot in the line of duty a few years ago so this is a cause I believe in.

If you are interested in more information, and if you want to donate to help Jack with his cause, please visit my friend Peggy's blog and read about the story. She has added a donate button on her blog. They are asking for $1 in person. $0.50 for the cone and a $0.50 donation to the cause. Donations are accepted in any amount, though. He is about a third of the way to his goal for the summer. He wants to raise $300 for the dog and his officer owner who spends money out of his own pocket to get him what he needs. Small amounts sure do add up fast! Jack has raised $105 already $1 at a time. Sure if you donate over the net you do not get a sno-cone, but then the dog gets all of the money!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Critics ... or ... a good review

There is a website in Utah that will arrange for a reviewer to come out and watch any production, of course based on availability, regardless of the theater status. As a community theater group we do not have the chance to have a review by a major publication otherwise. It honestly is just not feasible to have major publications come do that for all of the local community groups. So Utah Theater Bloggers steps in to fill that void. I have been reviewed, or have had a show reviewed by them, three times. I always get sick to my stomach nervous knowing that they are coming. I do not know why I get so nervous, they have never been uber critical of the work that I have been involved in. In general these reviewers get it right! I appreciate their honesty from a patron standpoint, as a producer I get nervous only  because I would hate to get a bad review for the organization or the actors. But hey, that is life in the theater!

Well the latest review is out for our show The Marvelous Wonderettes. Here is the scenario of getting this review:

I knew the reviewer was coming Friday night. We set aside tickets for him, and were starting to set up when a HUGE wind storm hits the Salt Lake Valley. We perform outside, and we were in trouble!! The Council made a quick judgement call and decided to move the show inside. There is a small stage in the bowery in the park behind our big stage. We moved as quickly as we could, the reviewer showed up just in time to see the backstage drama of it all. We did not do our mic check before the house opened because we just did not have time. The bowery is a metal building with an echo. I was mortified by what was about to ensue. I need not have worried. The cast and crew rolled with the punches, of course they did, and the show was amazing. If anything they performed it better than I have ever seen it. The crowd was engaged, the setting was more intimate, and sound even worked.

The reviewer came up to me after the show to thank me for the ticket and tell me he thought the review would be out by the end of the weekend. We got mad props for not cancelling the show because of weather. With a bigger show we would have had to. Thanks heavens for the small show!!

The review came out tonight. We went out to eat after the show, because it is a law in Utah I guess ... to go out after a show with the cast. Pretty much everyone had gone and Mel got a text that the review was out. I was filled with an instant anxiety and thrill of anticipation. In short, I was sick!! She read out loud the review. What did we ever do before smart phones? And the review was good!! The reviewer treated our show with so much respect, and my actors with praise, that I almost cried right then and there in Chili's. And exhale!

It is a good show. It is a smaller show than we normally have during the summer, outside musicals usually have a LARGE cast. So our ticket sales are lower than normal, we do not have the adoring grandparents coming to see their grandkids. But it is a good show. Check out the review, if you are so inclined, then get your  buns out to see this show! What are you waiting for? A sign? Richie give them a sign!!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Be Marvelous!

L-O-V-E that spells LOVE! I just posted as my fb status update that I could not love my cast and crew any more than I already do. I have had a ball working with a small cast and crew this time around. 4 actors, 9 crew, heaven! The pic below pretty much sums up how I feel, and I wish I were behind them with my arms around them too ... cheese!
l-r Paige, Megan, Melody, Kristen photo taken by Kate Johnson
The Marvelous Wonderettes is a show about 4 friends in high school and then their 10 year reunion. The women playing these 4 friends just happen to be great friends of mine. I say, as the producer, that I was not intimately involved in the casting decision. I supported the director in casting but I did not say "Cast my 4 friends!" especially since 6 of my friends auditioned ... turning down 2 friends was not my favorite thing ever! Blog for another day. Well these 4 friends of mine are women I respect and love. Working with them has been a treat for me.

In the play they say "Be Marvelous" more than once usually after a character has done something petty or less than marvelous. Well let me tell you, these actors have been marvelous to work with. I would work with them again and again. This is BJ's first show. We have worked every vocal bone in her body! I am so pleased with how willing she is to work as hard as she can to make this the best experience for her. S and I have worked on 2 shows together. She has a dry humor that lightens pretty much any mood. She has really had to step out of her comfort area for this role and I admire her for it. CL and I have been chums for years and years! I think this is our 5th show together. Her voice is soulful and sweet at the same time. She makes me laugh with her facial expressions on and off stage! M has a voice like an angel! I have missed sound cues because I have been mesmerized by her vocal range. I am uber jealous that my high note is basically her low! I cannot wait to work with her in the future Together these actors blend and harmonize into one cohesive unit on stage. It has been my pleasure to sit and watch these masters at work. 

I love, adore, respect, and am in awe of their courage, devotion, talent, and friendship. There is a camaraderie that exists between actors that is different than it is between the producer and actor. They literally have spent the last 6 weeks together pretty much nightly. I have not had that and am jealous of it! I miss being on stage with fellow actors and the bond that that creates. When you are on stage together you have to have the ultimate trust in one another.

I love love love these girls! These are my girls! They are my family away from family. (Yes my family is close, but you know what I mean!) I would do almost anything for them ... I stop short of illegal acts! I threatened a gang member because they tagged the "house" that "my family" plays in every night which in hindsight was not a good thing. But they messed with my family. Nobody messes with my people.

With that said, come see my family and support my girls as they perform their guts out! Yesterday it was 102 when we started the show. They give it everything they have up on a hot concrete stage every day. They amaze me. The show opens tomorrow and runs nightly except Sunday until the 21st. Visit this link for all information or to buy tickets.