Monday, March 31, 2003

Oh yes, the tension has started to build. Only a few more days until my recital. Am I ready? I think so. My dress is done. I'm almost finished with all of the red tape...etc. My music is memorized, but not to the point that I'll zone out and lose my place. Now all I have to do is come up with some vocal inflections and a little bit of drama up there. We'll see how that goes!
I have a dining room table. I actually ate on it. After two years of eating in an armchair, in bed, or on the was a nice change! It's beautiful -- drop leaf and old! Now I'm avoiding studying for two tests. One midterm, and one test that I simply forgot about. Guess my late paper will never be turned in...I have to get it done. Maybe after my recital
Mom's here. Suddenly my house is clean and I have a plethora of groceries.

Friday, March 28, 2003

Thursday, March 27, 2003

Why Rachel is leaving her church:

Teri did hit on something, so lest you think I'm just an overly critical flake, here are my list of reasons why I feel that I do not wish to stay at the church I'm currently attending.

1. Preaching that seems to go nowhere and say nothing.

2.Bible study that doesn't really study the Bible, but meets once a week to discuss everyone's rather hazy views on why they appreciate their faith, without any reference to Christ

3. Sunday school that is an interesting lecture series on icons, prayer mazes, and such, but something I could read about on my own.

4. Lack of Biblical foundation manifested throughout the church laiety -- to the point that most of the congregation cannot tell with any accuracy where to find any given book of the bible.

5. The Rector.

6. A general sense on my part that there should be more to church than church stuff. The focus on church should be to meet, and worship, and learn something that can be applied to daily life. Litergy is wonderful, community service is great, even socializing with other Christians are all good things, but it shoudln't be the only reason to be there. We don't go to church to feel better about ourselves for having done our good thing for the week, and then walk out without having been challenged to grow, to mature, to grow closer to God, to repent of the things in our life that are keeping us away from him, to become connected to God so that in turn we may minister to others. But to try think that you can do all of that church "stuff" without the basic foundation of a personal relationship with Christ is a serious waste of time and energy -- in fact it seems worse than nothing at all. It seems to me that a person is much better off doing no church stuff than calmly sitting year after year in a place where you're getting fed watered down pseudo-Christian mixed with the latest pop-psychology and motivational speaches where you'll never have the chance to even hear TRUTH, and never know the difference. After four years of it, I'm starving spiritually. I've loved the liturgy. I've loved the music. But I need someone to teach me something that I can't get out of a book, or by reading a commentary. Don't think I haven't tried to glean nutrition out of what St. Albans has to offer. I'm going to sunday school, to the rectors bible study, and to sunday every week on top of helping out with youth group (which is actually run by a Baptist, so we do get meat and potatoes there). But I'm still frustrated. I thought it was just me not trying hard enough to take advantage of opportunities that were being presented, or being so critical that I coudln't possibly get anything out of it. But then I went to another church for a sunday. And there it was -- truth, a good sermon, an application to daily life, a congregation seeking to do God's will, and that went out of its way to welcome a stranger. And It felt like coming home.

So it's not just me. And I'm not the only person on that church that feels the same way about it It's not a decision I've come to lightly, and I don't think anyone should leave a church "just 'cause." So there you have an endlessly long tirade! Now I'm going to go practice....

Wednesday, March 26, 2003

Alright. So today was just one of those days. I've started announcing to various factions that I'll be leaving St. Albans after the Easter services. This is getting hard. How do you leave a church? And how do you do that without criticizing the church, pastor, elders, etc?

Tuesday, March 25, 2003

I passed my recital hearing! I'm going out to get sloshed. Well, not sloshed perse, but I'm definately going to have a drink. Maybe even two if I get really excited. Maybe I need to rethink joining a baptist church. I can imagine they woudln't be thrilled. And Dr. Williamson didn't like my suit. Well, not the suit exactly -- just the fact that I wore pants to a hearing. I forgot that she woudln't like that. I did wear closed toe shoes just to make sure I was kosher. Oh well. You can't win them all and she still passed me...I'm all set for my ever-looming recital!

Sunday, March 23, 2003

Found out today that Matt was coming over to pick up some meds from Adrian. He was bringing along Stacey who has never seen my house. My house, until about three hours ago looked like a minor tornado had gone through all of it (mainly because Adrian and I had torn through my wardrobe looking for somehting to wear for my audition). It was still all over the floor. And lets not mention the kitchen -- except to say that the putrid smell I've been blaming on the kitty litter box in my bathroom, was actually week-old curdled custard-gone-wrong from last saturday when I got inspired to cook during spring break. Not yesterday, mind you, but a week before that. Yes. Buried under a week long pile of dishes that somehow never made it to my dishwasher. And by thursday when I was too stressed to clean I just started lighting candles in the kitchen to mask the stench, and keeping my house colder than normal. To my future husband should he happen to stumble across this -- I am not a good housekeeper. Please prepare your kitchen cleaning skills, because I have none. But my house now looks fantastic. I cleaned vicariously for an hour, only to have them stick their heads in the door, glance around and go "nice!" Then they left. But at least my apartment is clean. Yes. Nice for the relaxing.

I still have 4 songs to memorize by 12:30 tuesday. I was supposed to do it today. I've hit, however, a mental roadblock and can't force any more foreign words into my brain. Nope. Just not working. Certainly by tomorrow though!

I think I'm going to stop going to my church. I'm ready for something new. Maybe after the easter rush is over....

Saturday, March 22, 2003

My audition is over! YAY! One less thing to all my stresses of the semester will be over in just three days....or at least the currently looming ones. I walked onstage after hearing the two people before me. One was very good, the other was not. I'm not including names because I've learned the hard way that people can find themselves if you write about them on the internet. I wore a very cute two piece dress-suit (dress with long jacket over the top) and a scarf. I dashed and got a haircut....and it was a great idea because they all liked my haircut -- maybe even more than my singing. Who knows. But on professor kept mentioning it..."Nice haircut! Very nice!" I was nervous about the Quia Respexit by Bach. I wasn't worried that I'd mess up noticeably, I just really has some good lessons this semester and was desperate to apply them to this audition. I think I did. I noticed at least one professor nodding his head. They let me sing another two pieces after that. Dr. Van Cura even called me to say it went well. I'm very happy. Now I'm going to go memorize my last three pieces for my recital hearing on tuesday...
My audition is in 4 hours. In two hours I'm going to go get the "profession graduate student" haircut. I hope it looks good. I sure as heck can't do normal hair -- only my updos and stage hair. We'll see how it goes...wish me...not luck, that's no good for a performer....toi toi, in boca al lupo, break a leg, lots of spitting. And ditto for Matt who's heading to the Met finals on Monday.....

Friday, March 21, 2003

My audition for grad school is tomorrow. I'm not nervous yet, but I will be terribly so when I wake up tomorrow. 3:00 everyone throw a prayer (hopefully) or at least a happy thought my direction...

I have a new accompanist for my recital. Mine still didn't know my music, so I decided that I'm enough of a wreck myself without adding the pain of worrying whether my accompanist is ever going to get it. We parted company on good terms though. She's coming to my recital, and I'm going to hers. My new accompanist is charging reasonably atrocious rates for picking him up 5 days from my recital. I like working with him much better.

I'm going to a movie tonight. To get my mind off of all the upcoming. I've memorized my two songs for the I can rest in piece. Tomorrow I'll get up, get a new hair cut, decide what to wear for the auditions, scream a little (that's warming up for the non-singing people) and then go. Turns out I'm singing in Jones Concert Hall (the big one) and not Meadows (a lecture hall really) like I'd thought. I've got to remember that my voice will carry better if I don't try to make it sound big...again, happy thoughts would be appreciated.

I'm bidding on my recital jewelry online, and some horrible lady has outbid me. I'm going to a movie and don't have time to watch it...maybe my parents would obblige me!

Thursday, March 20, 2003

"And live from Baghdad we have Jim. Now Jim was asleep during the whole bombing thing that happened early this morning. This is all part of Bush's lesser known wow and dazzle campaign, which began just before daybreak. Now Jim, tell us what you saw. " "Well, actually, as you said Brink, I was asleep this morning as Bush's Wow and Dazzle campaign got underway, but I did have a rather nasty dream as a result." "Really, Jim, what can you tell us about that dream?" "Well, it was about tigers really, chasing after a lawn tractor." "And what do you think it means in regards to Operation Enduring Freedom?" "Well, Brink, I think if we analyze the tigers....."

Wednesday, March 19, 2003

Does anyone else think that if newscasters have nothing new to report, they should just save us the time and say " we'll be back when we have something new to tell you.." instead of rehashing the same three sentences over....and over.....and over......

Monday, March 17, 2003

Kyrie Eleison, Kyrie Eleison, Kyrie Eleison

Christe Eleison, Christe Eleison, Christe Eleison

Kyrie Eleison, Kyrie Eleison, Kyrie Eleison

Sunday, March 16, 2003

I managed to get out of the house, and to the pub -- but the world ends before I can find the right question to ask Ford. We'll see how this goes. This could be the biggest time waster ever invented!

Saturday, March 15, 2003

Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
I'm playing incessantly this really old game that I can't figure out. I'll paste the link in here once I find it again. It's the Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy game....never played it before. And if anyone knows how to get to Ford Prefect without getting hit by a falling brick when the house gets bulldozed, let me know

Friday, March 14, 2003

The last few days of freedom! Now that I've gotten everything done but my music, I'm spending my time doing craft projects I've put off, or put aside, or not finished. So far in the talley: One miniature sewing box out of red brocade with a "hat" shaped pincushion on the top. Very cute. Matches my living room to a tee. I used about a gallon of tacky glue. The goal for the rest of the semester -- year -- whatever, is to make projects out of the stuff I have. One cabinet, part of the top of my closet, all of behind my bed, both end tables, and part of under my bed are full of random fabrics, notions, and ribbons to make projects that I've since forgotten about. I've told myself I cannot buy anything new until I do some of those....

In other news, 23 days until my recital. AHHHHHH!

My House is painted, my graduate application is in, and my recital dress is done! Everything I intended to have done by the end of spring break is done...except for memorizing my music. That's tonight and tomorrow's project. Wish me luck! I'd love to get everything done I meant to do...and even get my bedroom back in order too!

Thursday, March 13, 2003

Oh so cool! My paint looks wonderful! And it's almost done. NOW all I have to do is move all of my living room back from where it's currently hiding -- in my bedroom. All of it.
Check out this link.Pretty Neat huh? See if you can figure out how it works...

Wednesday, March 12, 2003

And now, the moment we've all been holding our collectedly baited breaths for........Rachel updated her page layout. Very exciting, no? Ok, not really -- but I did work at it. Now if only I could change the background without losing all of my settings. I'm off to eat, then finish translating my recital pieces

Tuesday, March 11, 2003

Success! My application has been mailed -- and is completely beyond my control. And it's only 10! How exciting is that. Next on the list....memorize music, and finish recital dress!
Goals and Aspirations

My goal in life is to develop the talents that God has given me to the fullest
possible extent, and to use them in a way that will allow others to see God in my life. I
intend to pursue a career as a professional opera singer. In the near future I would like to
audition for such programs as the Music Academy of the West and Seattle Opera’s Young
Artist Program. Baylor’s degree program will enable me to develop both my talents and
my faith into a cohesive whole.

In my observation Baylor has an excellent Vocal Performance Degree which will
prepare me academically as well as vocally. While I feel my time at Baylor has
significantly altered my voice, I need the extra two years to complete the transition from
my pop music background to trained classical singing. Also, in my family higher
education is a priority. Both of my parents are educators, and I would like to leave the
door open for the possibility of pursuing a doctorate down the road.

One thing that has been a great cause of concern is how little tolerance there is in
the performance world towards people with an active faith. As a Christian University,
Baylor encourages my beliefs rather than discourages them, as so many other reputable
degree programs would likely do.

I love to learn, and school comes easily to me. I enjoy researching and paper
writing, and relish any opportunity to gather information about my craft. As a graduate
student I intend to use my time gathering working knowledge of performance practice to
better my own singing. One class I’ve been looking forward to taking for four years is Dr.
Zeiss’ Opera Literature class, which in my four years at Baylor never fit into my schedule.
I’ve also been wanting to try my hand at composition, and would relish the opportunity to
lean from Baylor’s amazing faculty.

I believe that the Baylor School of Music is the perfect place for me to study
because it meshes seamlessly the serious study of music and the Christian Faith, a
background I will need once I venture out into the larger world of music.

Grad essay is half done. Not long enough though. I need more length. Back to the drawing board
I did in fact buy a planter -- actually its a's so cute! Now I'm home finally -- Matt took hours making up his mind. Now I've just finished painting one wall of my living room. Once it dries I'll put everything on that wall back up. How long does that take exactly? I do need to sew the tassels on my swag before I rehang it. I'm going to take a nap. 7:30 comes a lot earlier than it used to!
7:30 am. Tuesday Morning has restocked! I'm off to find a nice planter for my violet! And hopefully Matt will decide to make an appearance with Stacie -- I'm supposed to meet them there, but both of them are less of morning people than I am....we shall see!

Monday, March 10, 2003

Got to decorate one room of the bed and breakfast! So nice!!!! It was very exciting to decorate someone else's place for a change! Very fun! Now I must feed the cat, water the plant, and bum around....oh and do my grad essay.
Cats are sooooo cute! Oh, I want one! Need to come up with a creative litter box solution. Off to help decorate a bed and breakfast! Ciao!

Sunday, March 09, 2003

Babysitting the cutest cat in the world!!!!!! She's trying to get me to pet her while I type. So I must go and dote on her. This is a good practice run to see if I really want a cat of my own next year. So far the verdict is -- definately yes!

Saturday, March 08, 2003

Spring Cleaning, Part 4:

So no more cleaning for the last few hours. I've got my grad school resume done. My application is filled out. Now all I have to do is write a page long essay of my goals and career. I can do it! I also took the time to decorate a couple of boxes, reorganize a cabinet, and clean my bathroom. I'll try tomorrow to get some of my recital stuff taken care of, and the last of my grad stuff mailed off. Oh please let it all go well!!!!

Spring Cleaning, Part 3:

I went to Lowe's to try and find another type of organizer. Now that I'm committed to living in this apartment for the next couple of years, I need something done with the horrible closet conditions. And I found the perfect one -- I can fold my sweaters and put them on shelves that hang from my closet shelf! Oh so much space that clears up at the bottom. A few more of them and I should be in business. And then tonight I'm going to type my graduate entrance essay, finish typing it up...turn in my library books tomorrow, and then get a transcript on monday. Oh, and go talk to someone in the admissions office about a possible dual masters. We'll see how it goes.

Spring Cleaning, Part 2:

I went to the store to get a hang up bag for my formals. I'm always worried that they're getting mangled. I also wanted to look at a can of paint to brighten up my little living room. So I found the bag, and then asked someone to mix the paint. It turned out that they had a can there that someone had not paid for in the exact color I wanted...for four dollars! YAY!!!!!!!!!! Oh that makes my little poor starving student heart happy! I'm off now to hopefully finish my room -- and maybe my bathroom. Then I have to take a break and finish my grad school applications! I'll keep updating!

Spring Cleaning, Part 1:

Decided this morning that I will do all of my deep cleaning now since my family will be here in a month -- and though it sounds like a long time, I won't have time to REALLY clean anything after this week. So, I thought, yes -- K mart is going out of business...and all of their closet organisers are on sale. I will go and get some! But first -- I must make room in my closet to put an organiser! Yes. So currently the entire contents are spread all over my room -- on top of the previous mess. The top shelf looks lovely! Tha'ts all the progress I've made. And I'm trying to get rid of all clothes that I don't want to wear....quite a hassel. I never want to get rid of anything, but I haven't enough closet space...and I MIGHT wear something again. If I could only see it to know what I have to yes. I must get rid of stuff. I got rid of four pairs of shoes. That's quite a feat for me! Anyway -- I'm back to the room. Maybe I'll get my bedroom reorganised today. My deadline for the whole apartment is tuesday -- when Adrian is going to come over and help me paint my living room. I'll keep you updated

Friday, March 07, 2003

SPRING BREAK!!!!!! IT"S SPRING BREAK!! I spent two hour this afternoon basking in the first warm sunny day of the year. Oh it was so relaxing! A picnic blanket, sweet tea, and a nice simple book to read! Life could not have been much better than it was this afternoon! So lovely! Thank God that the day came when I had time to enjoy it -- one day sooner and I would have missed it!

And speaking of missing it! There were some lost seagulls at the lake. They must have been heading for a coast some where, and true to form, the man didn't stop for directions. So Lake Waco is there new vacation paradise. "C'mon honey, just give it a chance! It looks way bigger from over here!" It was amusing -- not to the second bird though.

Thursday, March 06, 2003

Ah! Three performances in one day! I think this is easily the most I've done. Sometimes two -- no wait, maybe with Melody Lane we'd have that kind of turn around. I'm so tired, but I had SOOOOOOO much fun! My role wasn't the comedy role, but I got to dance around singing at the top of my lungs. With the little kids this afternoon they only laughed at the wolf. Robyn and I would being acting and singing our hearts out, and all he had to do was walk onstage and they were on the floor laughing. Ah well -- the majority of the studio came tonight, and it was so much fun to perform for them! They liked it! They really liked it! I wish I'd gotten some pictures, but I forgot to get my camera back from Adrian before I left town today. I'm going to go wash the ringlets out of my hair. It's all crusty from hair products, and having to recurl them between shows. Night! I'm still in post performance glow! I think I"ll put off my project until tomorrow morning -- I"m too tired!

Wednesday, March 05, 2003

Do you ever have one of those days when NOTHING goes right?

This morning I woke up on time, and wound up running late -- go figure. I plugged in the iron, and decided that my new lamp would look much better behind my dining room I tried to slide it behind without actually moving anything. And my table broke -- and fell -- with my sewing machine on it. The machine is fine.

Class was not bad except that I have a project due friday, and no time to do it except between shows tomorrow. But we don't have class. But we do have to slide it under his door before class time tomorrow morning. So I still have to wake up earl.

Choir -- always atrocious. I hate that class with a raving passion. I'm not a mezzo, and I'm singing alto. It was long, and boring, and we're singing bad music.

My coaching with Aslanian went well, and I had time to go to lunch beforehand and sit in the hall with my part-time "boyfriend." His fiance lets me babysit him while she's not around to keep her eye on him.On a bad note, I was relaying a funny "tenor" story to Chris, and VC heard me, and jumped all over my case for telling a story that wasn't true. It was -- I got it straight from Carol. But he gave me the "you know you're making that up" tone of voice, and then proceeded to tell my friends I was sitting with that things like that don't happen in the real world.

Italian was long. I was tired by then. I just wanted out.

AH and then for the fun part! My voice lesson. I walked in and VC asks who's next. The lesson was Adrian's, but since he coudln't come and my recital is pending, he said I could have it. VC started the first rampage. How can he just give lessons away like that? No one does that (actually its very common practice in the studio. We switch lessons about as often as we change socks.) Then for the next 15 minutes, everything I did was wrong. My singing was wrong (you used to be able to do this. Two years ago you had this down! Why can't you do it now?), my reactions were wrong, (What was wrong with that? Stretch? NO! BREATH. Now what was wrong with that? Um, breath? NO! STRETCH! What was wrong with THAT? Um........stretch? NO! BREATH! Now what was wrong this THAT? Um............I don't know? See! That's your problem. You don't pay attention when you sing! You should be paying attention. You need to think more! What's wrong with you today? Is this a bad day? You seem distracted. I can always tell when Rachel's going to have a bad lesson because she gets spacey.) Last week, by the way, the problem was that I was thinking too hard. You see my confusion. Anyway, thank God MY part of the lesson went well once my accompanist came in. But my mood was ruined. And I beat a hasty retreat. To go work with Glenn for another hour. He remembered hearing the "tenor story" before -- so See? It did happen! That's total today one hour of lessons, and two hours of coaching. I should practice some tonight, but I'm going to take a bath and go to bed. It is after all the night before three performances.

ANyway....being :Lent I suppose I should say something about giving things up. Which I am. But my day was so bad that I forgot to think of anything before I got to the service. So: upon post-service reflection I am going to give up: 1) being emotional in my lessons instead of clinical. 2) Looking to other people for my approval and self image instead of to God, who frankly, knows me better. I'm also working on 3) Some relationship issues that came up recently, and then I haven't decided what to take on. I already read my bible and pray daily (Yay new years resolutions) and I don't want to give up chocolate or sweets -- I haven't given up anything material in a long time. I've tried to give up character flaws for the past couple of years. Maybe I'll keep working on giving thanks for everything. Starting with my lesson this afternoon. That should take all night. I'm off to a bath

Tuesday, March 04, 2003

Thanks to Stacey Fredrick for the following contribution! Too funny for words!
What is a Praise Chorus?

An old farmer went to the city one weekend and attended the big city
church. He came home and his wife asked him how it was.

"Well," said the farmer, "It was good. They did something different,
>however. They sang praise choruses instead of hymns."

"Praise choruses," said his wife, "What are those?"

"Oh, they're okay. They're sort of like hymns, only different," said the farmer.

"Well, what's the difference?" asked his wife.

The farmer said, "Well it's like this: If I were to say to you: 'Martha, the cows are in the corn,' well, that would be a hymn. If, on the other
hand, I were to say to you: 'Martha, Martha, Martha, Oh, Martha,
MARTHA, MARTHA, the cows, the big cows, the brown cows, the black cows, the
cows, the black and white cows, the COWS, COWS, COWS are in the corn,
in the corn, are in the corn, are in the corn, the CORN, CORN, CORN.'

Then, if I were to repeat the whole thing two or three times, well that
would be a praise chorus."

What is a Hymn?MA young, new Christian went to his local church usually, but one weekend attended a church in the city. He came home and his wife asked him how
it was.

"Well," said the young man, "It was good. They did something different, however. They sang hymns instead of regular songs."

"Hymns," said his wife, "What are those?"

"Oh, they're okay. They're sort of like regular songs, only different," said the young man.

"Well, what's the difference?" asked his wife.

The young man said, "Well it's like this: If I were to say to you, 'Martha, the cows are in the corn,' well that would be a regular song.

If, on the other hand, I were to say to you: 'Oh Martha, dear Martha, hear
thou my cry. Inclinest thine ear to the words of my mouth. Turn thou thy
whole wondrous ear by and by to the righteous, inimitable, glorious truth.
For the way of the animals who can explain; There in their heads is no
shadow of sense. Hearkenest they in God's sun or his rain unless from the
mild, tempting corn they are fenced. Yea those cows in glad bovine,
rebellious delight,Have broke free their shackles, their warm pens eschewed. Then goaded
by minions of darkness and night, they all my mild Chilliwack sweet corn
have chewed. So look to that bright shining day by and by, where all foul corruptions
of earth are reborn, where no vicious animal makes my soul cry And I no longer see those foul cows in the corn.'

"Then, if I were to do only verses 1, 3, and 4, and do a key change on
the last verse, well, that would be a hymn."

Monday, March 03, 2003

I'm having a melt down. My accompanist isn't going to be here for spring break. My recital hearing is the week we come back from spring break. I have little red riding hood up until thursday before spring break. I'm not happy. In fact I'm very very very stressed out. Back to practicing

Sunday, March 02, 2003

I just met my new neighbor -- an assistant football coach, graduate student in sports merchandising? sports something -- um...dang it! Goes to baylor...nice guy.

Saturday, March 01, 2003

So this evening I'm going to sew. Definatly. It must be done. My dress is sitting in the living room draped over my wingback chair, screaming at me "finish me! Hurry! You're running out of time!" And my first finger is sliced open. I'm not sure how it happened....but I looked up after cutting up some strawberry glace pie and my finger had a long diagonal line running down it. Oh yes. Hurts like crazy. Try writing without your first finger. yeah. Then try opening doors, turning on your car, signing a reciept....yeah. Its been a blast. Its stopped throbbing, so now it must go back into use. Healed or not. yes.

I saw my rector today. While we were rehearsing. They were having a bike race in Saledo and as we came back from lunch, here comes the rector of my church walking towards me in bike shorts sweating up a storm. That was interested. I've never seen her without a clerical collar on. She did recognise me after a bit -- of course she wasn't planning on seeing me there either. Then Mrs. Dr. VC stopped her to tell her about some friends of hers that had been going to St. Albans for years without ever being approached by a rector. Seems that Janne's going to search them out. yay!

Alright, I'm off to sew! Think happy thoughts in my direction. Where's the neosporin and a bandaid?