Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Tonight we went to a home of a lady in my parents ward who is having a tough time, and were intending to move some branches left from a previous service project. However, when we got there that had been already been done by this woman's son-in-law... I was a little panicked because we had a great turn-out and I wanted us to be able to help in some way!
So, the woman came out of the house and gratefully brought to our attention the weeds and huge bushes in the front of her house that needed to be pulled, cut, and moved to the dumpster. We got set to work right away!
We had a great time and really felt great helping that woman out... I was a little bit of a baby with touching the bugs... There were centipedes like MAD up in there - not cool. Haha! In fact, the pic to your left is me reenacting my shocked expression over the monster bugs... O toned down version though. Nonetheless, I found way to be equally helpful shoveling, raking, throwing our the roots & brnahces when the boxes we filled were full, and taking some pics for our FHE history. I really was great! There are some pics below of the activity I was able to plan...
I have a testimony of serving others. I know that as we look outside of ourselves, we grow closer to our Savior and Father in Heaven. I know that we are happier when we are serving others, and we carry the light of Christ as we do so. I know that it will help us grow in so many way... In compassion, empathy, understanding, socially, gratitude, and it will help us grow to be more like our Savior. I am grateful for the opportunities that I have to serve others... I know that we are all blessed as we do so, and you know... We had a GREAT time!
Song of The Day: I love Ben Folds.... His song Brick is fabulous and is a HUGE memory in my life, among his songs on the Rockin' The Suburbs album. Enjoy a song by him from his latest album that is not a single, but... Classic AMAZINGNESS. It really is beautiful, though a sad song in many ways, and I LOVE his use of the piano. Listen to a live version of Ben Fold's Kylie from Connecticut.... Enjoy!
Friday, August 14, 2009
What is this story that I am taking about?
In February of 2009, Joaquin Phoenix did an interview on The David Letterman Show that was perhaps one of the most bizarre interviews of all time. In fact, a few years (months?) previous to Phoenix’s interview, Farah Fawcett gave a somewhat wacked out interview on David Letterman’s show too (maybe it’s just his show…) and after Phoenix’s interview Letterman stated, “I think that we owe Farah Fawcett an apology [for giving her a hard time over her interview].”
Anyway, in this interview Joaquin Phoenix said that he was giving up acting and working on his music career – a rap career. Pause… He is TERRIBLE! If you UTube him, tagged as a rapper, than you can watch just how horrible it is. However, he does drop the “F Bomb” about twenty times… Heads up! So, in regards to his rap career the audience had a hearty little snickering session, and he sat dumbfounded, asking why people thought that was funny. Letterman even sat there laughing and poking fun at him through the whole interview, and he made no reaction, but to appear confused and semi-offended.
Now, I think that Joaquin Phoenix is a talented actor. This is the man behind Signs, Walk The Line, Ladder 49, and Gladiator. He has taken on numerous roles, with varying personalities. I’m admitting that he’s not in my “Top 5,” but he’s an actor I enjoy watching. Here's some footage of the interview - key points:
So, what the HECK is going on with Phoenix? Has he actually gone off the deep end? Is he on something? His family states that they don’t even know him anymore, and his friends say that it seems like he’s goober-up hardcore. However, reports say there has been no evidence of drugs… Fishy – very fishy. Nothing seems to make sense and fit together quite right. What are my theories?
Here ya go… The kicker of the story is that Phoenix has a filmographer follow him around with a camera and they film everything that he does. They film EVERYTHING he does…
I believe that Phoenix is part of an underground documentary. In about a year or so, some sort of documentary will appear at some Film Festival discussing underground rap artists or wiped out musicians, or perhaps awkward individuals and their classic social moments. I have many theories on what the film will be, but I truly believe that’s what going on with our fellow actor. In a little over a year I believe we will see just how great of an actor Phoenix is... I guess the statement “only time will tell” is true.
Song of the Day: David Ryan Harris – Turn Around. This is a FABULOUS song! I adore his soulful, acoustic sound and this song it unique and genuine… Plus, it’s about something we all go through when dealing with lost love… Dramatic, I know. Go listen to David Ryan Harris’s, Turn Around. Enjoy!
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Okay, now on to a little post of the past... Annnnnnd, begin.
I never did record another important event that I was able to be a part of this summer. Last summer I was asked to work with a team of producers and stage managers out of LA as an Assistant Stage Manager (ASM) for our local Independece Day event called Stadium of Fire. It was an awesome opportunity and a big deal in the sense that Stadium of Fire is broadcast to all the troops and their families around the world. Plus, it's one of the biggest firework shows/concerts there is in celebration of Independence Day. Anyway, this year I was asked to help out again as an ASM and jumped on the opportunity!
Being a part of Stadium of Fire was AMAZING! I really loved working with the whole crew from last year - The stage managers were all the same and almost all the ASMs were the same. So it was a lot more relaxed of an atmosphere. We were joking on the radios and dealt with problems with greater understanding of what others were capable of... It was a blast and I had some time to snap pictures, which didn't happen last year... In fact the pics below are of the Joe Bros during their set!
Jonas Brothers and SheDaisy were the talent and they both did a great job - I ran into the boys backstage, oddly enough, but didn't get to see the girls much. I watched their sound check though so it was fine. I have loved them since HS and I think that they are SO talented - apparently they are very nice girls too. That's what the talent crew said, AND my brother served my mission in SLC where he met them and their family and went t0o their house for Christmas one year. Haha! Just a sidenote there for ya... There are some pics of them below at their sound check and then the actual performance!
I was running around during JoeBros sound check, so that was a no-go, but I was good just seeing them perform. They did a fairly good job - I'm not a huge fan, but I do like them. These pictures of the "oil cans" with Jonas Brothers and SheDaisy logos and names on them were part of the "sanctum" as we called it - AKA: The trailers that were not allowed around after breakfast on Saturday morning.
I think they're a BIT over the top... Especially with the current economical state of our country, and we're spending money making celebrity oil cans as decorative props that the celebs don't take with them and won't really care about... Kinda superfluous. The end of that mini-rant - haha!
Sidenote: My favorite part of the WHOLE event was these boys (13 and 15) that were some of the stage dancers and were AMAZING! I told them that So You Think You Can Dance better watch out in a few years - They are SUCH talented boys!
Funny Bit: The put me in charge of the hardest portal - and it was kinda cool cause I ended up helping with all the executive decisions and learning to be a real stage manager. Plus, I had to deal with all the volunteer issues that we had, which was not fun, but good experience. Anyway in that portal they had all the vehicles coming out of it - tractors to pull and change set, a giant cauldron and torch on wheels, a mini stage, a motorcycle... and also an incinerary circus - YEA. A FIRE CIRCUS! It was insane.
Anyway, they joked that I must be really bad with people cause all I got to deal with was vehicles - cause I am loud and not afraid to yell at people to move - haha! At the end of the night I saw Shari, the main Stage Manager, and said, "My portal stuff went great -I even got to work with some people!" She replied, "Damn! Next year - strictly animals. You are too dangerous with people." Haha... I thought that was pretty rich and quick.This is a picture of me and Lisa (another ASM) during our ten-minute dance party to the Jonas Brothers performance in my portal - This girl is AMAZING!
On a more tender note, I realized what a big deal Independence Day is in the reality of the gospel. Without the independence we earned, we would not have had the extreme religious freedom we were given. We were able to have the restoration in its fullness because of our religious freedom in OUR country. It really is all a giant plan... :) I am thankful for the right I have to choose to be LDS and the knowledge I have because of that... I got a little emotional realizing this during the fireworks that night thinking about it all... I didn't cry though. Haha!
Anyway, that was my AWESOME experience... There are pictures throughout the entry and pics of the after-party posted below!
The picture above is Evan & I at the after party with our Margaritas! Yea! Haha... Below is Chantz - Hilarious boy who made us all bust up laughing at every turn. I told him I'd be his agent after he gets back from the mish!
The pic below --> Aubrey (ASM) has worked with me for the past two years and is great! Next to her is one of the LA team members, Tom and he is my FAVE! He is SO flippin' hilarious and just a good guy!
Song of the Day: Today I have another song from the past to revel in... This is an artist most people might not know, but she is incredible. Her name is Anouk and the song I have chosen is Lost. Honestly, I only own a few of her songs, but I really like what I have... I should check out more of her stuff - and so should you! Haha... Anyway, here is Anouk's, Lost. Enjoy!
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Here's a little reader's digest version of the experience to help future auditionees, document a piece of my life, and depict some of the craziness that the audition encompassed...Now, I went to Denver for the audition, but I also got to spend time with some family that I haven't seen in forever. When I arrived in Denver the Saturday morning before auditions (which were Tuesday) my "Aunt" Shelly and her four girls (19, 17, 11, & 9) picked me up and we headed to a local amusement park. It was a BLAST! I didn't even scream on all the intense rollercoasters, etc. Be proud of me... Haha! I find that I actually spend the whole time on rides just laughing... eh.
Sidenote: I say "Aunt" with quotations cause she's my dad's cousin and not my real aunt, though obviously that's what I call her.
That evening I went to Miles High, Bronco Stadium at 12:30am to line up for the audition registration - Shelly's oldest daughter, Maddy, came with me after some heavy coaxing though I didn't know her very well. She is way more shy, so I think that it was really good for her. There's a picture of her and I on your left, eating pizza at about three in the morning that some guys next to us offered us... So good! Haha...
Anyway, upon arriving at the stadium people were JUST lining up and I was one of the first 100-200 people in line! AWESOME! Haha... I started talking to the black girl from Indianapolis (19 years old) named Lauren and made a new friend quickly - There is a pic of her and her friend Katie on the side. Maddy helped her save a camp out position for her and her friend so we stayed connected. Then, right across from us I met these two girls (who just had met at the airport eariler that day as well) named Tanya (22 year old preschool teacher from Wisconsin - her mom Robyn was with her and is awesome) and Jacque (20 year old from Arizona). I have noticed that this process is all about meeting new people as well as the audition. We were all there with the same dreams and ambitions or to support friends in these endeavors, and it really brings people together.
After getting our reserved seat tickets in the stadium, Maddy and I headed back to Shelly's to hit the sack before going to church and then spending some quality time by the pool afterward.
There is a pic on your left of the huge crowds that were awaiting the Registration Lines - This was me holding my camera up behind me, but the line wrapped all the way around the stadium!
So, EARLY (5am) on Tuesday morning I arrived at the stadium... It was CRAZY! We headed to the back of the line and waited to be let in until around 7:00am. They did a bunch of the crowd shots, and our crowd was assigned a song to learn (Denver's song was Carrie Underwood's Before He Cheats) that we sang a few times through. They had us yell the classic things like, "No! I'm the next American Idol!" and other random anecdotes. Finally they started around 8:30am with auditions...
I was one of the first to audition and I just stoked! I was done by 9:30am cause I was in the very first section of people to sing, which was nice. I was a BIT nervous, before I walked to the production table, but I was fine once I started singing for the producers. They put us in lines of four at each little pavillion, and when it was your turn you stepped forward, did your thing and got back in line. You can see we had our bags with us and everything - You dropped your stuff to the side and sang. I had nineteen seconds too sing a small part of Jewel's Foolish Games - 19 SECONDS! Yea. It was crazy....
As you can tell, I am sure, I did NOT make it through to the next round. However, there is a silver lining in that a lot of people who heard me were VERY complimentary and one producer DID pull me aside to tell me I was fantastic... just not what they wanted - which was intense originality. It really was a positive experience, and made me notice that I do have some exceptional and non-ordinary talent - so, I am ready to work hard to make "dreams come true." Haha... But, seriously.
(Below is Jacque, Tanya, Me, and Maddy after bit after the auditions, outside of the stadium!)
Plus, the family that I have there, and stayed with there, is having a tough time cause my "Aunt" just got divorced and the kids are struggling... Thus, I got to take the girls out and hang out with them and help them feel like they had someone to talk to. One of the girls, Maddy, is 19 and goes to SVU, and she is struggling the most. So, I have been talking a lot with her since I left & it's been great for her... I think that might be a huge reason that I was there, in all honesty. That and motivation... :) AND, you can be here when I finally hit it big now! Haha...
Also, SOOOOOOO many people took time to write me emails, wall posts, and texts saying "Good Luck!" or "We're praying for you!" It was very thoughtful and I can not thank those people enough... I have great friends and family... Serious.
In short, American Idol Season 9 is "Linzeless," but I am sure they will have great contestants - just none with my attitude and passion. Next Season? Eh. Probably not - I think there are other ways that I can be noticed and use my talent. I am just hoping that the Lord's plan and my plan collide someday soon... :) Dream big, right? Hahah... So, if the music industry is where I need to finally be, I will be there!
It was a great experience! I had fun, met some awesome people, and I spent time with my family - mission accomplished how it needed to be accomplished. I guess. Haha!
Oh, I wanted to watch the meteor shower tonight, but I start work again tomorrow - I am excited though. FINALLY! I'm ready to see my little ones on Monday and ready to make money again!
Song of the Day: This artist has a new album coming out at the end of the month and her previous albums are AMAZING - I mean, she was nominated for two (maybe three?) GRAMMY AWARDS! Haha... She also writes and producers her own albums independently, which is pretty amazing too. Her name? Imogen Heap! The song? Well, this is hard cause the ENTIRE album is stellar... Um, I think I'll choose Imogen Heap's, The Walk, cause it's the song that got me HOOKED on her music. Enjoy!
Sunday, August 9, 2009
1 - This week has been a bit of a crazy one in that my brother had to wait till THURSDAY for his surgery. They got in and found his ligaments were ridiculously torn and had to give him cadaver ligaments... SICK! Now, he is a member of the "living dead..." Seriously. He ALSO celebrated his 25th birthday this year - YAY! It was a lunch party with the local family and his best friend, Brad. His bestie is SO good to him - I'm glad my brother has genuine, good friends.
2 - I have WAY too many receptions to attend this month... I have three alone this week. I am gonna have to pick and chose.
3 - I finally gave in and bought a new laptop... I had the same one all through college and it was just NOT working anymore. It got so bad that it would only function for me for about 20 minutes and then freeze, even though I have all my music and pics on an external hard-drive. My brothers all work with computers, and my eldest bro helped me fix the computer three times before... So, it was time. I am actually excited about my purchase! I parted ways with my previous lappy and found a beautiful, compact, perfectly functioning new computer for $511 TOTAL (Including tax, etc. - TOTAL.), and I bought it this week. It was hard parting with some of my savings account, but as I type on my new "baby," I feel supremely satisfied.
4 - I have been writing more songs this week and feel SO good about some recent ones I am working on.
5 - I have spent the past few weeks (and past year, actually) really thinking about what I want to do with my life. I love music and theater... I want to act and sing. That's logical. My mom has suggested acting school in California, NY, Chicago, or London... I am trying to decide if that is the best route for me. Also, I have option number two, which is Grad School studying Event Planning & Sports Managment, or Music Business. I love those options as well... However, what do I really want to do? Again, act and sing. In conclusion of this thought, I have not concluded what my decision is and should be.
6 - In relation, growing up is hard...
7 - On a totally new topic, my newest calling this summer has been "FHE CoChair/Mom" and I have loved it. We have had SUCH success with FHE this summer and I pray that success continues... I really love my ward. I love the spirit there is on Sundays, and the thoughts that individuals provide in Sunday School or Relief Society. I love the power in the member of the bishopric, and that I am surrounded by worthy men who hold the priesthood - and use it correctly. I love my VT calling, and I finally understand the need for VT and HT... I love the gospel. I know and testify that it is the true word and work of God... and I am beyond thankful to know that. (This isn't really classified as a sidenote or tid-bit, but still...)
8 -I miss my besties Sarah and Nicole... I am SO glad they are out serving missions for our Heavenly Father, but I really missed them this past week...
9 - I hate having to worry about money as you get older. How am I going to pay rent again? How am I going to pay for school again AND pay off loans? How am I going to get a high enough paying job? Right now, I am looking for a second job to get some evening and weekend hours so I can truly save some money... It's not easy. If anyone has connections to people in Draper & Sandy area, and can hook me up with another job (or a better full-time one) please, let me know. Seriously, this senorita needs more moolah to move away and go back to school...
10 - I really am stoked to go back to Channing and see my little ones this next week - I really have missed my buddies!!! I noticed I call all my little ones, Bubba though... especially one of them, though.... weird.
11 - Did I ever mention that I got a pet hamster in June? Yea - a panda hamster! He is ADORABLE! I truly love him - little Cadence... :)
12 - I am not going to do a huge write-up on The Fray concert, but I will post a few pics and call it good - haha! The concert was amazing and as most concert are my this chica, inspiring (I don't know why I am loving the Spanish today). Their set was AMAZING - very inventive and simple - a four-way, split screen and simple bubble bulbed lighting net as the back draping. The color changes in the lighting and the way they used the simple set were amazing though - truly spectacular visually, but not overly stimulating. Plus, The Fray AND Jack's Mannequin sounded GREAT live! That was one KICK concert!
The pics below are as follows: Myself with Brandon and Chad - Two pics of The Fray and their amazing set - AND, Myself with Scott, Emily, and Chad -our little concert crew!!!
Okay, that was my tid-bit chart... I need to write about Stadium of Fire & Idol tryouts to truly catch-up, but tonight I am going to pass tonight and go read a bit before bed... I am currently enjoying a literary work I discovered to be genius. It's a newer series called The Mysterious Benedict Society, and it clever in the writing style and keeps you page turning as you wonder what will happen next. My mama discovered them and I am halfway through the first book... I encourage all to partake in the awesomeness.
Song of the Day: Even though I already gave you a book of the day above, I shall provide some melodic nourishment for you. In adding all my music to the new computer I came across many older songs that need to be enjoyed and remembered... So, today I give you an older goodie called The Freshman by The Verve Pipe. It's one of my favorite songs of all time... even though the message is, uh, debatable. ENJOY!
Sunday, August 2, 2009
This past week I went to the Seven Peaks with my bro & sister-in-law. Looks fun right? Yea... get ready to see the "other side..."
All was bright and happy until we got ourselves a double tube... There were three of us, so, to be safe we also obtained a complimentary ride tube. We had spent an hour and a half going down the rides that didn't require tubes, but thought it would be fun to do two or three tube rides too... So, we walked up the ramp to proceed down one of the rides that required a tube.
When we reached the top of the ramp ride entitled, "Tube Run," which had NO LINE - Bingo! We instantly chose that ride. Dang you, Tube Run... Dang you. We decided Cami would go down first on the complimentary tube and Derek and I would follow on the double tube. She went down, we hopped on, we were told to ride the right way and switched our feet around as to not get hurt, and then we were let down the water slide...
After about five second of amazing thrill and excitement, we headed into the second (yea, only the second) curve only to have the tube fly onto the side of the giant slide and out from under us, causing us to completely flip. I hit my head, but was fine, so I sat up and looked at Derek, hoping we could just jump on the tube and continue down... His face was complete horror. Now, I have been writing rather dramatically, because that's what I do, but Derek's face really had more terror etched into it than I had ever seen. He started scream/crying, holding his shoulder, and I stood up as best I could to secure the tube and get Derek back into the tube.
Suddenly another little girl came barreling down the tube, knocking me over and hitting into Derek. I grabbed the tube, had Derek climb in, and then I rode behind the tube as I tried to make it down the rest of the slide without hitting too many curves at high velocity so Derek didn't fall off. We got to the bottom before any other little girls or boys could run into us again, and I hollered to the lifeguard to halt the ride and get an EMT.
It really was terrifying as I ran to the car to pull it around and call our parents to let them know what had just happened...
From Seven Peaks on out we had to take Derek to the ER, thinking they could just pop the shoulder back into its socket. When we got the ER they told us that from the X-Rays it showed it was something that they couldn't deal with there and we would have to go to orthopedics doctor - luckily, he got in the next day... (I went with Derek and Cami to the doctors...)
What was wrong? A complete shoulder separation - I don't know technical terms but you could see in the X-Rays that one bone is sticking over the other bone... The doctor told us surgery would be necessary and that they would probably need to shave some of the one bone off to fit it back into the shoulder area - SICK! It seriously looks AWFUL!
In latest news, he's on medication and resting, but he is hurting SO much... We catch him crying or trying not too... Poor thing. I just feel so bad! They are talking it through with Seven Peaks right now, but frankly, I think that they should pay for it all... Hm. All in all, please keep Derek and Cami in your prayers right now! We had a fast for them today, but the more prayers they have, always the better...
The moral of the story: Don't go to Seven Peaks Water Park.... Or any water park. Ever.
Just kidding... kinda.
Now, there was ONE good thing that came from this for me. I know, I know... what could it be?
When Derek, Cami, and I were sitting in the hospital my first thought was, "Derek needs a blessing." So, I called our friends Brad to see if we could drive over after we were done at the hospital and get Brad and his father to give Derek a blessing. Sure enough, that was completely fine and we went over right as soon as Deek were released from the hospital. When Brad was giving the blessing I was reaffirmed in my decision to marry a worthy priesthood holder in the temple. I thought about how I would feel if my husband didn't hold the priesthood and wasn't able to give our children or myself blessings when we were sick or injured. I thought about not being able to share that important part of my life with the person I most care about... I would really be unhappy. I might have happy times, but I would not be fulfilled or truly content...
I love the gospel and I know that the priesthood is a real power and gift. I want to be able to share my religious idea and ideals with the person I love most...
My "reaffirmation" is the silver lining within this situation. I think it's important to always look for the silver lining in all of life's happenings...
Real moral of the story: Find the moments of growth and learning within each thing that life hands you... and don't go to water parks. Ever.
Anyone wanna go to Lagoon before summer's out?.....
Song of the Day: Regina Spektor's new album, "Far," is PHENOMENAL! I truly love it... Some of my favorite songs on there are Dance Anthem of the 80s and Human of the Year. However, my favorite so far, and a song called Genius Next Door. This song is beautiful and amazing... Take a listen, and... Enjoy!
Saturday, August 1, 2009
I have a lot to catch-up on from these past few weeks, including the American Idol auditions in Denver, Derek's accident at Seven Peaks, working Stadium of Fire, and going to The Fray concert... I think that I will start blogging a little more this week as I have some downtime finally. Who am I kidding? I have had a lot of free time, but have been scrapbooking, seeing movies, writing music, reading an AMAZING new book, and just chillin'... So, I will spend this weekend catching up!
Anyway, TODAY is not about me. TODAY is about one of the most well-written, fictional characters to grace the pages of children (and let's be honest, adult) literature. That's right! TODAY is the birthday of HARRY POTTER!!! Harry is turning 29 and has certainly been through a lot... he deserves a quite nice birthday at home with Ginny. Okay, that was taking it WAY to far. Haha!
It is also about the creator and writer of that character, as it is her real birthday as well... Thus, I believe we should also say a fantastic "Happy Birthday" to Miss JK ROWLING!
Sidenote: It will probably be August 1, 2009 when I post this. Harry and JK were born on July 31... just so you know. Okay, I really am done being a geek. For now...
Now, in honor of these special birthday's (and truth be told, I wanted to celebrate a piece of my childhood) we decided to make a cake... and not just ANY cake - a HARRY POTTER caricature cake! Boo-yah! Haha... Below you will find some pictures of this incredible cake - tasted rather amazing too, might I add - and our mini birthday celebration... Cami took video as we sang happy birthday in our best British accents - classic.
Enjoy "canibaliam" at it's best... or worst. Haha!
Song of the Day: So, I have a lot of songs to pick today that are new finds, gold-mines - that rhymes... that does too! Haha... I'm done. Really. Haha! Anyway, because I am going to be writing a few times this weekend, I will pick this one that I should have loved long ago, but only discovered right before I went to Denever for Idol tryouts... Check out The Killers song, Spaceman. It is AWESOME! I wasn't a big fan of The Killers in the past... I'm not sure why. However, I have recently gotten into their music and I LOVE this song... It's a great workout song, but a bizzare music video - Enjoy, Spaceman!
The Killers - Spaceman
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