Monday, December 1, 2014

Open Letter to Parents of Theatre Kids

Dear Parents of kids in productions,

I want to start by saying that we love your kids. They are great. We love watching them stretch and grow into parts that are not easy for them. We love challenging them and watching them sprout wings and fly! It can truly be amazing, and they grow in confidence and knowledge, and maybe they will face new things with a can do attitude in the future. I would like too think we are helping build a work ethic. A REAL work ethic, where you work, not where you are handed something for nothing.

This is probably one of the greatest gifts one can learn, it will help in all aspects of life, it equips them to be truly amazing adults, and isn't that what the world needs?

Now let's talk about shows....









All of these photos represent one play. ONE. One play done 10 different ways. A director takes a script and interprets it. It is not cookie cutter, laid out for you and you do it exactly like the movie or the Broadway version. We must adapt many scripts to be appropriate for a school setting or younger actors. Music must be found in our case because we do not have a band. Proper keys must be found for our particular singers. All dance numbers must be choreographed and taught. A feel for the interpretation must be shared, and designed, and created. Stage action, even what seems obvious or natural, must be created and taught...and adapted to your personal space. Not all stages are alike, just like our children. You must work with the students available. This means working extra time to improve singing abilities and teaching dance to those that have never danced before. A lot of behind the scenes preparation goes into a production, even before the kids audition.

Let's talk about time.
If you were just cast in a musical, and given 12 brand new to you songs to learn, and lines in many scenes how much time would it take you to get ready? Now add dance moves, and many costume changes. In our school, due to limited, well, everything, we have 3 hours a week.
Three a week.
And about 12 weeks total before the curtain rises.
We have over 35 kids to teach, direct, costume, and in many cases, corral. Yes, I said it. A room with that many kids in it, and they all know each other, which is great. It is wonderful that they like each other and are friends, except that they talk, a lot,  when they are supposed to be listening and learning new directions. Due to this one must speak with authority. One must use a stage voice. It isn't yelling, it is using loud volume to be heard. One must emphasize that we only have so much time and so many weeks until this is on stage, no more "oops, was that my line". No more missed ques. We work the kids hard so that when the time comes they can go on stage and be professional. They can be their character, not merely "Johnny" in a costume.

This isn't a bunch of kids in vegetable costumes reading a sentence about the goodness of asparagus.
This is real theatre.
We call extra rehearsals because we HAVE to. Believe me, we want our vacation days too. We sacrifice them, unpaid, so that the end product is better. So you can be proud that your kids did so well.

Please,  please, when your kids whine about how hard it is, or it seems like the director is mad, take it with a grain of salt. If they complained about chemistry being hard would you march in and demand the class to be easier? I would hope not, chemistry is what it is, and it isn't necessarily easy, but if it isn't fully taught, then your kid misses out out on truly learning it. When they push through and work hard, then they really accomplish something, and then they can be proud of themselves.

We are so proud of the work they do, and how far they have come, please don't stop them from fully discovering how amazing they can be to make it easy for them. I am a parent, I understand it's hard when your kid is frustrated or tired, or feeling down.
Trust us, they will FLY! They will succeed, and they will glow with accomplishment.

And if you want it easier?
Come to class, volunteer, help work lines or songs with students and paint sets and sew costumes.

Thank you,




Sunday, November 30, 2014

About That Tree

Almost all my stuff is in storage. My Christmas decorations, gift wrap, yarn, craft stuff, most of our movies (we kept out Christmas ones), recipe books (BIG MISTAKE) and well, everything.

The family we are staying with recently acquired a love seat and sofa set, they have never had 2 units like this, so they are debating about whether or not to put up their big Christmas tree. I tried to help out in the over-all "Hey we could do it like this" conversation, but the husband is convinced it is too big .  He is talking about a little 3 footer maybe. I hope some sort of agreement is made. I love Christmas, I love a house decked out for it and well, so very much is already so weird and different that I would be sad if there wasn't some sort of Christmas decor.

He did string up lights outside yesterday, YAY! I love the lights most of all.

He isn't being a scrooge or anything, it's a space thing, although they have both admitted they hate putting it up and taking it down. I offered help, and now I have stepped out of the on going conversation.

In other news today is the last day of NoBloPoMo.
I made it.
Whew.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

One More Time!

The month is nearly over! I blogged (nearly) everyday! I honestly didn't think I could make it. With all that has gone on this month, including another (very fast) move, I honestly thought I would just fizzle out mid-month, but here I am! Writing this post, and one more tomorrow.

Can you tell I am tired?

I actually have a lot to say about life right now, but there is this privacy thing, because most of my stuff right now involves other people, and well, perhaps they don't want their lives all over the interwebs.

Also, some stuff in the works needs to be kept quiet, for the sake of others, we aren't out to hurt anyone, quit the opposite, we need to protect. Nothing is a done deal anyway.

I feel like I am juggling...
but not some "easy" three perfectly weighted balls, oh no. I am juggling a chainsaw, a raw egg, and a live cat, and maybe a wine glass too, just to make it interesting.
I think maybe I also have an eye patch on.

Just be a duck. Let it roll off your back.
Let it go.
Roll with the punches.
God's bigger than this.
Don't worry, be happy.

:)

Friday, November 28, 2014

So This Happened

After finishing a long over night shift at work (she works retail) my daughter entered her home, where she found us, her mom dad and little brother sitting in her living room.  She said a slight swear word under her breath. I expected it, she startles easily.
Ryan handed Spencer his phone and said here, it's on video.
Jenelle was heading across the room, but Ryan gentle grabbed her, "Come here".
"We're going to do this right now? I have to pee"

It's on the video, it will live on forever.

He took a knee and pulled out something sparkly from his pocket and asked my daughter to marry him.
She cried before the words got out of his mouth, and she said yes.

The wedding is in a month.

Sometimes the formal asking gets waylaid by a job that takes you away from home, and also from a maturing money CD that you have to wait for to buy the ring, because he is wise with money like that. 

We are happy, she's is very happy.


Thursday, November 27, 2014

A Moment.

Just a moment to remember what we have to be grateful for...
1. Situations that make me prove I am really an adult.
2. Life's curve balls that keep me on my toes ...
3. and using my brain
4. Circumstances that lead to total dependance on God. I know some people think that the only way to be happy is to be self reliant, I think it only brings disaster. No one can do this life truly alone.
5. Moments that I have to make a conscience (and sometimes really hard) choice to be nice.
6. Times of utter confusion, and not jumping to conclusions.
7. Painful events that remind me I am alive, and be thankful for my health.
8. Big problems that remind me that little things are worthy to be grateful for as well.
9. Growth. Think about it, water that doesn't move and flow is stagnant and smelly and gross, and well, who wants that?
10.I am thankful for the things that build my character and faith, even if I feel I should be done by now.

May you have a gratitude filled Thanksgiving, and may blessings of joy find you.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

A Big Thank You

A big thank you and shout out to my parents that raised me.
They had some practice before me, and I appreciate those siblings that went before me so my parents could practice before me, which is probably a good thing. :)

Life is weird and interesting and a roller coaster, you know the kind, you are exciterd and want to puke all at the same time while laughing? Yeah, kinda like that.

I am very grateful to have a place to go tomorrow, to fellowship and break bread and give thanks to God for all the blessings we have and will be given, even the hard ones. Even when the path we are one doesn't make any sense to us. I know it will all work out, to His glory and for our good.

I hope you know this.
It's not an easy lesson. One would rather stomp a foot and demand better.
One would indeed.

But then one learns to quiet herself down, and just roll with the punches.

Yep.

Here I go, rolling.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Ten On Tuesday!

Long ago my main focus of this blog was gratitude. I did a Ten On Tuesday list every week, specifically of thanksgiving and praise and gratitude. Giving a moment to declare thanks to God for blessings.  Gratitude has gotten me through most of the hard parts of my life, so considering all that is going on here is a TOT list!

1. My husband, my rock. We are in this together and we are for each other.
2. My kids, and their lives and adventures.
3. Friends. Safe friends specifically, that I can word purge the deep dark stuff and they will still love me.
4. Traditions, and flexibility to let some go sometimes....this year is complicated, nothing will be what we would consider normal or tradition. But that's okay, because we can still have fun, enjoy the season and do new things. We can alwasy return to old things another time.
5. Cream puffs.
6. Paper, pens, books, and whatnot.
7. Figuring out gifts, and using them. As in what one is gifted to do...
8. Figuring out gifts, as in what to give someone. :) I love giving presents. I may not be able to give all I want, or to as many as I want, but I do love it when I get to!
9. Vision. To literally see, and to see what's not seen, or is yet to be.
10. Grace and Mercy. We all need it.