Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Let's fall in love...

Last night was incredible! We were able to go see Diana Krall perform at Red Rocks amphitheater. I have never been there before and the setting made the concert that much more enjoyable. From our seats we had an incredible view of the stage, most of the Denver metro area, and the huge red rock formations surrounding us. As darkness fell, the lights of the city twinkled in the distance. The small hiccup with this open air theater was the rain that started about halfway through the opening act that just continued to fall harder as the concert went on. Even the performers were getting wet and had to move the instruments back further on the stage. :) It made for lots of fun song quotes during their jazz improvisations: singing in the rain, raindrops keep fallin' on my head, and stormy weather, among others. We didn't mind the weather too much huddled under our umbrella. We totally enjoyed cuddling and there was a very intimate feeling as a result. We saw the true definition of a "fair weather fan" as people kept getting getting up to leave. I thought it was making the memory of the amazing night that much more distinctive.

The opening act was trumpeter Chris Botti. He was fantastic -- such a beautiful tone! His band was rockin', especially the guitarist and the drummer. The acoustics were incredible and I loved the way the trumpet echoed off the rocks. I am thinking we need to get some of his recordings.

And what can I say about Diana?!? She has mad keyboard skills! On her CDs it is easy to focus on her singing, but live, you can't ignore her amazing piano chops. Everything about her seems absolutely effortless. She really gets to the heart of the music. I loved all of the songs she sang. I think my favorite was... okay I just loved everything! I am so glad we were able to go and see her. I had waited almost 10 years to hear her live and even sitting out in the rain, it was totally worth it!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

But on the bright side...

I LOVE red lipstick! I love how it makes my whole face come alive. So even on the worst days, I can have my wonderful 16 hour, long wearing, cherry lipstick.

I had one of those days...

I hesitate writing about this because it feels so whiny, but I also think it might be therapeutic to try and put some of these feelings into words. There are days that I think it would be so much easier to have a different job. I am pretty sure the pay would be better, I would be a little more respected by my colleagues, and I wouldn't be on call so much. Yeah, there are days the stay-at-home mom thing is not so appealing. I absolutely adore my kids (and I am pretty sure they are about the cutest on the planet) but after picking up the same toy/shoes/shirt/backpack for the millionth time my patience wears a little thin. I almost lost it the other night. Why can't something that I just cleaned stay that way for a least 10 minutes?!? I totally feel like a failure at times. How can I possibly be a good mom if I can't even keep on top of the (endless) dishes, meals, laundry, papers, and STUFF?!? And somehow fit it all in between all the other obligations -- places to go, people to see. I feel like I will never be the supermom I should be. You know the type... THEY never yell at their kids, lose their patience, have dirty dishes in the sink, etc. (Okay, I know sometimes THEY do, but this is how it seems to me.) How can I ever possibly live up? It is also hard feeling like I am taken for granted by my kids. It is a struggle trying to teach them to be responsible. In some ways it would be easier to just do it myself, but I know in my heart of hearts, that would not be doing them any favors.

To sum up, I want to do this job better, but how? Supermoms out there, I would LOVE some advice. Both the practical tips and how to deal with the emotional toll that this can take are all welcome.

And lastly to my mother, I am SO SORRY if I ever made you feel like this! This (stay-at-home) motherhood thing is certainly the most challenging job I have ever done and I totally give you props for how well you did it!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

A first grader...

It's official. We now have a first grader in the house. Morgan is totally loving Mrs. Clemmon's class and all the new friends she is making. She is so tired at the end of the day (after going to school all day) that she actually falls asleep before midnight. :) I am so proud of her and how grown-up she is becoming.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

The best movie so far this year...

Ken and I are thrilled that Holly and Brian (Ken's sister's family) have moved to CO. Last night we got the cousins together and then the adults went on a double date. We had some fantastic Mexican food at Hacienda Colorado and then went to see The Bourne Ultimatum. The movie was incredible!! The action was super intense and the fight and car chase scenes were very well done. In fact, I think it should count as a workout because my muscles were flexed the entire time. :) Matt Damon was awesome. My one disappointment is that Jason does not get together with Nicky. I have wanted them to get together since the first film. There were, however, allusions to them having a past together. Maybe there will be some answers in the deleted scenes on the DVD.

Overall, I say two thumbs way up and the best movie I have seen so far this year!

Iowa Straw Polls results...

Mitt rocked the vote. Sounds like a party and I wish I could have been there despite the horrible heat and humidity. This is such an important election and I can't wait for my voice to be heard. Here are the results (which I copied from My Man Mitt)...

1. Mitt Romney 32%
2. Mike Huckabee 18%
3. Sam Brownback 15%
4. Tom Tancredo 14%
5. Ron Paul 9%
6. Tommy Thompson 7%

Then . . . the "also rans":
7. Fred Thompson 1%
8. Rudy Giuliani 1%
9. Duncan Hunter 1%
10. John McCain 0.7%
11. John Cox 0.5%

I am also pleased for Huckabee, who I really like. It will be interesting to see what some of the other candidates decide to do with their campaigns.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

The Cabin...

One of the most anticipated trips of the year is when we go to our friend's cabin up in Montana. This year was no different. We all had a fantastic time! We were there for 4 1/2 days. The kids played in the creek, fished, rode horses, and played so much with all their friends that they literally fell into bed each night. It was so fun to watch the kids see the animals come up to the salt lick in the meadow. Peyton especially loved the moose! The grownups had a wonderful time as well. We talked until late every night, fished, canoed, rope swung into the river, enjoyed the beautiful view, and played guesstures (five year winning streak for the girls!). Our trip to "the cabin" is always the highlight of our year and a wonderful time to reconnect with incredible friends. Thank you Mark and Malinda for inviting us up to the cabin. We always have a fantastic time and we can't wait until next year!

In-laws visit...

This weekend had Ken's parent's visit and then his sister's family joined us for lunch on Tuesday. So very fun to be all together, even if only for a few hours.

We are absolutely thrilled that Holly and Brian are moving up to Colorado. They will now be about 17 hours closer and we are totally looking forward to it! Our kids are so excited about the prospect of playing more with their cousins. We have been waiting for this for years and now it is finally here!

Saturday, August 4, 2007

My quest...

For the first time, in a long time, I feel like I can sing. While in Las Vegas this June, I had the opportunity to take a voice lesson with Jeffrey Skousen. It was incredible. I had no idea I could sing like that! It was also thought provoking. So now I remember that I can sing -- what do I do with it? I have also thought a lot about the path that I have been on and where I want to go. Thinking about all this has been pretty emotional and overwhelming. How do I balance my personal goals with my responsibilities as a wife and mother? Still not sure on this one. But I now realize that while all my classical training has been very helpful for my love of choral music, it didn't do a whole lot for preparing me to do musical theater. I have loved that genre for as long as I can remember, but once I got into college and chose to study choral music education, I was steered toward choir and opera. At BYU the music school did not play nicely with the music theater department. So for years, I have not pursued that passion of mine. I am not talking broadway or anything, but I would love to do some community theater as the kids get older. But first I need to get more comfortable singing this new style.

When I got back to Denver, I found a voice teacher that teaches the same technique that Jeffrey teaches. I had my first lesson with MaryAnn last week and I think it was very productive. I look forward to studying with her. Right now I am working on The Wizard and I from Wicked. It is so fun! It will even be more fun when I am really comfortable singing it and can rock it. I know this will be quite the process, but I am glad that I am finally moving forward with my dream. Another benefit will be how this will add to my marketability as a singer and voice teacher. I hope this quest that I am on will also help my students. I am sure there will be ups and downs, but I am glad to be taking some action. This will be an adventure...