July 24, 2010

Feeding the soul and the tummy...

So I have a small confession to make. I'm an avid reader of Jason Mraz's blog. A wonderful friend suggested I check it out and I love it. He has such an intelligent and witty way of writing about the world around him. Both the good and the bad. His blog was actually what finally made me start one after debating it for a while.

I've settled back into LA. Well if you can even call it that. I'm in an apartment getting emptier by the day. I constantly have the nagging feeling I should be packing but manage not to get started yet because I still don't know where I'll be moving. The days are ticking down and I'm nervous but also optimistic we will find something we love. The past few days have been spent mostly with myself. The majority of my friends are not in town and up until this morning I had been without internet and am still without a TV. It's interesting how much time those two screens take up in our lives isn't it?

Well to supplement the time I would have spent surfing facebook, checking my email, and potentially writing here I found other, better, ways to entertain myself. And what's better? I ended up creating some amazing meals, reading some great books, and finding the much needed quiet time I had been craving since coming back to LA. For dinner the past two nights I've marinated chicken in balsalmic with onions, salt, parsley, and garlic. Then pan fried the chicken all together with the onions which simultaneously cooked to yummy caramelized perfection. I then cut up my chicken and added it to a giant bed of arugula, tossed in a little fresh basil, squirted half a lemon over the top and viola! The most delicious and easy salad ever. On the side I had boiled broccoli and some mushroom risotto. Talk about delicious. Tonight, in a wonderfully serendipitous search through Netflix I found Julie and Julia and watched the movie while enjoying my quick and healthy home cooked meal.

I'm quite proud of myself to be cooking while my apartment looks the way it does. I know I keep talking about the messy and awful state of this place, but trust me, it's pretty bad. I think most people would have given up and gone to McDonald's by now. But I'm staying strong!

Here's some pictures of my latest creations. Other than the cake they all include arugula. I've just been reintroduced to it and I'm obsessed!

July 19, 2010

Driving Thoughts

So I'm finally back in LA and already it feels like I've never left. My apartment, now in a completely transient state, has almost no furniture in the living room, no dining room chairs, and one less bed than when I was last here. The living room and other common areas have begun to fill up with boxes and bags of stuff to be moved into new places. There's still the same amount of hair-balls, dirt, and overall grime that never seems to leave no matter how much I or anyone else cleans. I think it's the consequence of living in a building where countless other college students have lived, slept, studied, and partied. The walls are not quite white, and the paint job my roommates and I did in my room and the living room is less than perfect.

Although I had dreaded coming back to Cali and to this apartment I will miss this place for all the memories shared here. The people, the parties, movie nights, girl nights. Two full years of my life spent sleeping in my tiny twin bed in the corner perpendicular to Klarissa's. Even now as I lie in here, it's a part of a routine. For two years essentially every night before sleeping I would find myself in this very position checking emails, facebook, or cramming in last minute homework. And now in two short weeks I'll be starting completely over again in a new apartment in a new neighborhood. It's exciting but mind blowing. I think I'm starting to realize my time in this college village and everything that came along with it is rapidly coming to a close. I had said goodbye to this world mentally when I hopped on the plane for Connecticut a month ago, but physically it's a lot to take in. Not to mention a whole lotta crap to move out!

Now that I'm out of school my mind keeps getting flooded with all the things I want to accomplish. I want to perform as a dancer, I want to sing, I want to act. I want to choreograph. Learn the guitar, learn languages. I want to write....something. All of a sudden my hunger to do EVERYTHING has come alive. But where to start!? I want to read more, watch TV less. Eat better food. I want to try a million new recipes and share them with friends. I want to find a survival job that I love not one I just deal with. I want to travel. I want to be in love. It's overwhelming. Without the confines of school the possibilities seem endless, and yet oddly out of reach. I guess this is my entry of word vomit, but it's true. Driving down from Northern California to LA my mind was constantly moving from one thing to the next. I had to keep telling myself not to forget things because when left alone with your music and your thoughts for six hours things come and go like water. One minute the ideas are there and the next they're out in the middle of the sea smiling back at you. Taunting you cause you can't catch them and remember why they were important. As much as that drive can be dreadful, I always manage to find a good deal of clarity in the process. With no means of distractions other than the occasional phone call and music you are forced to ponder and think all on your own. No facebook to keep you hypnotized, no mindless clicking through people's pictures and pages to stalk insignificant details they choose to share or overshare about their lives. In the car, alone on the road, it's pretty wonderful actually. Maybe that's where this spurt of dialogue came from.

More soon.

July 17, 2010

Going Going, Back Back to Cali Cali

So I'm back in California. The past 2 weeks have been a whirl-wind. I went from opening a show in CT, to hanging in NYC with new friends, to the overcast Richmond weather. I'm in my mom's house reflecting on the adventure I've just had. A bunch of family is coming over tonight for a bbq, sort of a belated Graduation party mixed with 'I'm never home so lets get together' party. I found some recipes in Cooking Light magazine that I am trying out for the shindig so I am spending some time prepping for that. There's something so methodical about pulling the little thyme leaves off of their stem. I found myself meticulously removing the leaves and day dreaming about everything that's just occurred and what's to come when I finally return to LA in two short days.

I couldn't really sleep the other night because all of a sudden the tasks I had managed to forget about for the last month came creeping back into my brain. I have to get new headshots, I need to get my resume on various casting sites, I need a job, I have to MOVE! And all before August even starts. I guess the time for rest is...never? Not that this is uncommon for me, just daunting. Peggy was right when she told me that returning home from our baby town kind of feels like 'What just happened?'...'Was that real?' All of a sudden it feels like it was a dream or a blur, something far away when really it was only a week ago.

While in NYC I got to see 2 shows. I wanted to see Fela but both times I tried to get tickets the people at the TKTS windows told me the seats sucked. So instead I saw La Cage Au Folles and American Idiot. La Cage was fantastic. It took me a while to warm up to it, but by the end I was totally enthralled, laughing hysterically and in awe of the male chorus who did a thousand jump splits in their Can-Can number. Holy cooter slams! It was insane, I just found myself laughing at the total abandon with which they hurled themselves into the air and then thumped flat onto the ground. American Idiot was...interesting. Overall it felt more like a rock concert than a musical. Everyone in the show was wildly talented, I loved the vocals and the movement quality. I wouldn't call it dance, but the choreography was really inventive and created really awesome pictures onstage. I also liked the music, I bought the cd and have enjoyed listening to it, but I probably wouldn't see it again. What I did find interesting was how much it just reminded me of Berkeley. Green Day is from our area and the show tried out at Berkeley Rep, so it makes sense. One girl was even wearing an "I hella heart Oakland" shirt which made me laugh.

I also managed to take a few dance classes while I was in the city which was a total BLAST. It has been a while since I took an entirely new class, by myself, with a teacher I've never met. My neck is very sore but I loved every second of it. At this point I'm looking for any reason to get back out to the east coast. Over this past month I've realized more and more that it is where I want to be. The community of performers, although huge, is so much tighter- more supportive. And the people I know in the city has now tripled! I love LA but leaving Goodspeed and NY was really tough. I was dreading it. Being home is nice, more relaxing than I had anticipated, but I'm just itching to get back to the East Coast.

If nothing else, I'm hoping to get back to see my show on their closing weekend in September. It truly is a special show and experience. Everyone is the top of the top in their field. One of our leading guys just put in his notice because he got cast in a new Broadway show and starts rehearsing in August. We've got amazing aerialists and dancers and singers, the show is truly spectacular. I am so proud to have been a part of it. The Sunday night show right before I left was tough. At the end of the show the cast sings an a cappella reprise of the song "Love Makes The World Go Round" and one of the guys in our cast sang the whole thing right to me in the mezzanine. I lost it. I had become so close with the cast, I have very rarely felt so compassionate about a cast, but I truly love everyone in that cast. I hope I can work with all of them again if not multiple times.

Anyways I've got to take my cake out of the oven and get started on my pasta salad. More soon.

July 4, 2010

Happy 4th!

Okay so it's been a while... rehearsals have picked up and the cast has been hanging out in the evenings almost every night. Happy 4th of July to everyone. I'm going to give a quick recap of some of the highlights from the past two weeks.

First and foremost the show looks amazing. Everything is set and we move into the theater day after tomorrow. I can't believe it! I'm a little worried about tech, because it's literally going to change EVERYTHING. I'm just praying for patience and understanding from all people involved. In reality we need about twice as much time in the space as we are going to have before an audience sees the show. Not only do we have to set all the technical stuff (lights, scene changes, costumes etc.) we have to set all the aerial work, maneuver people on and off ladders, and make sure none of our dancers kill each other on what may be the smallest stage ever. Should be quite the adventure getting everything put together.

I can't believe I'm leaving my baby town in one short week. I've extended my stay on the east coast so I can spend a few days in the city with the one and only Ms Lizzie Boulger which I am soo excited about. But I'm not looking forward to going back to the west. At least not yet. Something about being here, around all these people, I think I've officially caught the NY/East Coast bug. LA's great and I'm sure I'll love it when I get back, but I'm realizing more and more that for what I want to do, I kind of need to be on this side of the country. (Sorry Mom)

Some fun anecdotes from my stay thus far:
Most of the doors I've encountered while being here, save for my front door, don't have mechanical locks but little manual ones like the kind you find in public restroom stalls. It's cute, but also weird. I feel like they leave them that way on purpose to keep the antiquated feeling of these houses alive.

The liquor store in town is the only store open all year round. It's closed on Sundays, but opens at 9am on Saturdays. They must know that everyone from the theater has Monday off, therefore parties on Sunday night, and needs to stock up on booze on Saturday. I mean with a 9am opening I could stop and get my booze before even going in for rehearsal, how convenient!

I have become obsessed with Catchphrase and Taboo. The games were reintroduced by my new fave people from the Annie Get Your Gun cast and now I am a gaming master. I was lucky enough to be a part of the catchphrase dream team and I think I am making a pretty good name for myself among my cast with Taboo. Watch out though, I get really into the games.

Two nights ago the AGYG cast had a going away shindig next door which included everyone making whatever food they had left over so they could get rid of it before moving out, AND a naked jump in the CT river by a handful of the cast. I saw way more of a lot of people than I ever imagined I would haha. The theater here literally looks out over the river so a bunch of the guys jumped off the dock and took a little midnight swim...literally hysterical. It was a super fun night to say the least. The only hard part was being awake for the 9am yoga warm up yesterday. Yikes.

Anyways I'm off to celebrate with our cast. Volleyball at this little lake we found and then a BBQ at our male lead's place.

More soon!