Friday, May 28, 2010

quickly (before I fall asleep)

1) Chicago is cast. That is, assuming everyone accepts the lovely parts we are offering them. Phenomenal cast, I would say. Can't wait to work with them, but not before....

2) Vacation. Yes, my 10 (TEN!) days off of work (in a row, even!) starts now. And of course I'm exhausted and seem to have an especially lungy-sounding cough now, but still. I haven't had any time off since Christmas, but I plan to more than make up for it with 3 (THREE!) planned weeks off between now and mid-August. But vacation isn't really relaxing so far, because after not being in my house for the past three nights due to auditions, it's time for me to start thinking about...

3) Packing. I have to pack everything we own, pretty much, to get us through the week at the cottage. But first, I really have to....

4) Sleep.


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Don't wanna be an American Idiot


Chaotic is a good word to describe this past week. Like I mentioned earlier, I went to New York last week for a conference. And although I could complain that it was exhausting (which is was) and there were many aspects that weren’t glamorous (very true), I did get to do some cool stuff. Like get to meet Billie Joe Armstrong. You know. From Green Day. Yeah. Him. He was at a post-show party sponsored by American Idiot (the new Broadway show based on the music of, well, Green Day). And I spoke with him. Yes, it was for, like, 10 seconds, BUT STILL. (Also – American Idiot rocked bigbigbigtime.LOVED it. But you have to like Green Day to like this show, because the music is the best part. Also – very very loud.)

Did I mention that there were some celebrity sightings in the audience at that show? Like, half the cast of Glee and George “Norm from Cheers” Wendt? Yeah, that too.
Other highlights – seeing Denzel Washington and Kelsey Grammar speak at two different panel discussions, getting to see Hair and West Side Story, and basically being paid to be in my favorite city in the world.

Lowlights – Jane came down with a double ear infection and (probable) strep throat in my absence. I came home, picked her up at our friends’ house, and had to rush her off to the walk-in clinic because I just knew she had something beyond a cold. Sure enough, after begging my way in (they weren’t talking anymore patients), she got the diagnosis. We actually ended up bringing her to her regular doctor on Friday, because her cough was just getting worse, and they put her on a different antibiotic and steroid for her inflamed throat. Poor bean. Of course now I’m catching whatever she had….but we knew that was going to happen.

We had the first night of auditions for Chicago (the show I am co-directing this summer) last night. Very nice group of talent – and more to come tonight. This one is going to be incredibly tough to cast- but hey, I’ll take an abundance of talent over no talent at all! It looks like we will most likely be rehearsing four nights a week –so things are about to get even busier ‘round these parts.

Luckily, we have a vacation coming up next week. That’s right – we are actually taking our first away-from-home vacation in over three years! Wahoo! We’re only going down to the Connecticut shoreline, but frankly, that’s as exciting as going to Hawaii to me at this point. Even better, because we don’t have to get on a plane. And I am really tiring of the word “staycation.” (Although I think taking a vacation within your own state still qualifies as a “staycation,” but I’m ignoring that.)


Sunday, May 16, 2010

busy bee

Another busy weekend gone by. We were at the boat almost the whole time (we slept at home, but that's about it). Finally took it out for its maiden voyage this year today. Very nice day on the water. I was nervous because we were out with Jane during her naptime, so I figured she would be total hell to be around, but she just fell asleep in my arms about halfway through the trip, and managed to stay asleep as she was carried down a ladder and put on a couch. It was super lucky because she stayed asleep while we were docking, and since I always suck at my docking duties (why can't I tie complicated knots?!) it was good to not have her screaming for me from the boat.

This is a busy week, as I'm off to NYC for a conference. I get to see three shows, American Idiot, West Side Story and Hair, so I'm pretty excited about that. But still, it seems I'm expected to stay up past my normal bedtime of 9:30. I feel like one of the big kids now!
PS Jane got her first pair of sunglasses and now she is way cooler than me.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

mothers (day) and babies (the movie)

After my massive blogging bonanza last week, I obviously had to take a blog break. That was simply exhausting, posting those YouTube videos and everything. Anyway, I’m back. Did you have a nice Mother’s Day? Mine was pretty good. Overall it was a really busy weekend – we had friends over on Friday night, Saturday we did chores and took the whole fan-damily to West Hartford Center for a walk – yes, including the dogs – and then I had book club on Saturday night.

Of course we made a scene on our family walk. Whenever Junior comes out with us, it’s like a circus. It's like walking around with Lady Gaga or something. He's a celebrity. Everyone wants to see him, pet him, ask how much he eats...of course, he was in heaven. Plus Jane wanted to “walk” the dogs, so it was basically Greg holding the double-leash, Jane holding the end of the leash, and me doing nothing but walking behind them. Awesome!

On Saturday we also went to lunch at Rainforest Café. Holy shit, that place is loud. I don’t know if you’ve ever been there, but inside the décor is rainforest-style, and the animals (birds, gorillas, elephants, etc) all come to “life” every 15 minutes, and then every 30 minutes there is a big “storm” – I am shocked it didn’t scar Jane for life, because it sure did me. I think I’ll avoid that place for the rest of my life a couple more years.

On Sunday we went to my mom’s for brunch and Jane chose that day to basically reject me and be in a terrible mood. She was all like, “Happy Mother’s Day, beeeyotch.” So that was fun. Nothing like having a 2.5-year-old throw a massive fit every five minutes to help you celebrate your motherhood.

Last night I finally got to see the movie Babies! I went with Lisa and I really liked it a lot. You really have to be interested in just sort of being a fly on the wall, watching these four babies from around the globe go through their first year - there is no narration or explanation of anything - no subtitles, nothing. Nonetheless, I really enjoyed seeing how, really, it doesn't matter whether you are raised in a little hut in Africa or in a big-city like Tokyo - babies are generally the same. (I wasn't a huge fan of the hippy-dippy San Francisco parents. I can't even really put my finger on why. I just liked them least out of all of the parents.) Anyway, Lora at Fever interviewed the director of the movie, and they came to the conclusion that what babies and children and parents need most is love given and time spent. It doesn't really matter what else you give them - what they need and want above all is love and time. And it's true true true, despite the fact that it sometimes seems so hard to accomplish. (Not the love part. The time part.) Anyway, check her post out.

Friday, May 07, 2010

come on babe, why don't we paint the town

FINALLY found out today that the summer theater program I work with got the rights to do Chicago this summer. It was looking a little hairy because originally we were supposed to do The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (awesome awesome show, love it) but some professional group is apparently putting it up somewhere near us so they yanked the rights (this happens to community groups if a professional company wants to do the same show). Anywho, we decided then that we wanted to do Chicago but it was taking FOREVER to get the rights- and we're supposed to have auditions in two weeks - so it was starting to look like we might do Rent instead (which we also secured the rights to), and, well, here's the thing.

Rent is my all-time fave. You know that. But boy, when I get my hands on Rent to direct, I need to really, really be able to focus. Like, abandon my life for 8 weeks. With Chicago it's easier. First off, I'm co-directing with someone who has already done the show before, so that's great. Plus our music director has already done the show. So this summer (quite unlike last summer with Children of Eden) I would like to not develop major stomach issues because of stress over the show. I want to - how you say - have - oh what's the word? - oh yeah - fun. I want to have fun with this one. And Rent means ever so much to me - I'm afraid I would become completely and totally obsessed. And who knows? Maybe that will happen with Chicago. But I absolutely know it would happen with Rent. I want to put it in my back pocket for a while.

Auditions are in two weeks. Here we go....

chick flicks

I want to see these two movies SO BAD. (OK, I know I already posted the Babies trailer at some point, but too bad. It's delicious. It makes me teary every time! And I LOVE the song in the background. What is that? Must Google.) Happy weekend!

Thursday, May 06, 2010

staring at the ceiling

As you know, Jane's bedtime routine these days is less than desirable. Since she got her big girl bed, she needs me to lay next to her bed until she falls asleep. If I leave her room, she follows me out, over and over. She will not stay in that bed for anything - unless I'm next to her.

I often hate this. I hate the fact that I hate this. I am trying not to. It's just that I'm just there, on the floor, staring at the ceiling, thinking about the precious moments of Amanda Time that are being used up by....nothing. This part of the night often takes at least a half hour, never mind the fact that I've moved her bedtime from 7 to 8. So while I used to have a good couple of hours of free time until I went to bed, now I'm down to maybe an hour. Often less. So I get frustrated. And angry, sometimes, that she won't just. fall. asleep. And then I get mad at myself.

See, the time of Jane's life when she's going to want me so close, all the time, is fleeting. According to some friends of mine, she could start hating me as early as four years from now. Mother-daughter relationships are often tough, especially during those horrfying puberty years, which, from what I understand, start at about 10 years old now. I worshipped my mother as a child - but we definitely ran into tough territory when I was a teenager.

So I am trying. Trying to realize that, all too soon, I will desperately miss the days that all I had to do to make Jane happy was to lay down next to her, and watch her drift to sleep.

Monday, May 03, 2010

I may not be great at this parenthood thing, but I guess I'm not new anymore.

Just changed my little profile over there to the right, and removed the "I'm a new mom" part. Even though I still don't know what I'm doing on a daily basis, I guess I'm not exactly new anymore. So what's my excuse now?

more weekend, please.

Well we had a pretty awesome weekend, thankyouverymuch.

The weather this weekend was perfect, in my opinion. This is just what I have been waiting for. Okaaay…maybe it was a little bit hot yesterday (I think it was in the low 90s) but I kept saying, over and over, I HATE WINTER - just knowing how much better I feel in this weather just defines how much I hate the cold shit. Yeah, yeah, I know my last blog post covered that.

Anywaaay….on Saturday we went down to Mystic. We didn’t go to the Seaport or Aquarium (although I love both of those places) - instead we just went downtown, where they have a lot of cute shops and a waterfront. Well, turns out there was a big May Day family fest thing going on, so it was really busy but there was lots of fun stuff for Jane to do, like a Maypole, bubbles, a bouncy tunnel thing, music, etc. We all got sunburned unfortunately but other than that it was a really fun day. Jane was completely wiped and fell asleep on the way home – mission accomplished!

On Sunday we went down to the boat – this is the last time we’ll head down to the marina in Chester, because Greg plans to move it to its summer home in Old Saybrook this week (we keep it in Chester during the winter). The Chester marina is really calm and quiet and lovely – but I do like Old Saybrook better. I like being near the bridge and the more party-like atmosphere of the marina – not that we are big partiers these days- but someday.

Aside from Jimmy’s middle-of-the-night ear infection drama on Friday night (yes, Greg was off to the vet at midnight to get Jimmy some drops – he’s fine, no worries) it was as perfect a weekend as we’ve had in a long, long time. Hope you had a good one too.