Thank Goodnes For A Good Book

I started feeling bad on Tuesday and thought it was just my asthma and the weather change.  Fast forward to Friday and a very long doctor appointment later and I have pneumonia.  Oh course I do.  That would be about my luck.  So as I have been heavily medicating and coughing all night long I have been entertaining myself with books.  After my wonderful Nicholas Sparks book I decided I wanted to read a series.  I hate reading a book and getting so invested in a character just to have it end 300 pages later.  That is why I enjoy series so much.

I decided to jump on the bandwagon and read the Divergent series.  I bought the movie last week and liked it but I always like reading the book after.  The book is always better.  If you were like me and haven’t read these yet its basically about a distopian society that is broken into factions to live peacefully sort of like the Hunger Games.  The factions are Abnegation, Dauntless, Candor, Erudite, and Amity.  Each faction lives by a basic principle so that all of the factions can live in peace.

This got me thinking…could I really live in a society like that?  Could I pick just one aspect about myself and make it my sole purpose in life?  I know for certain I could not be Dauntless.  They are the brave faction.  I am certainly not one for adventure that is outside of my comfort zone and I would not be volunteering to jump off a building or into a moving train.  So that one is out for me.  I also do not think that I could be Candor the honest faction.  This is not that I am liar or don’t believe in being truthful I just don’t think I could be so blunt all the time.  I genuinely concern myself with how other think of me and if I were in that faction I’m not sure if I could take the brutal honesty.  Erudite seems to be the most corrupt faction in my opinion so just on principle I would not choose the intelligent faction.  I also am not sure that I wouldn’t bore myself to death just reading and studying all the time.  The two I think I could belong to are Abnegation the Selfless faction or Amity the Peaceful faction.  Abnegation lives for doing things for others.  They are not vain or boastful.  They help those that are factionless and don’t even allow themselves to look at their reflections in the mirror.  I think I could be in that faction but for the wrong reasons.  I think I could live that life simply because of my low self esteem.  It would be easy to focus on others always.  It would be easy to not have to look at myself in the mirror.  But I think for me its more of a selfish reasons behind that so that doesn’t work.  So that leaves me either factionless or Amity.  I think of all the factions this is where I would go.  They are kind and mellow and help each other.  Granted they eat “happy bread” to keep up their good moods but whats the difference between that and some zanex really.  So for me I think I am Amity.

How about you guys?  What life would you choose for yourself?  Are you Brave, Selfless, Intelligent, Peaceful or Honest?  Choose wisely because choices can not be undone.

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The Magic Nun

Sister Dulce Maria

I was introduced to Sr. Dulce at the beginning of the year by my dear friend Amanda.  Terry and I had been going through some tough times with infertility and we were just down and out about it.  Amanda said she heard of this healing nun from a friend of hers.  The nun met with her friend, prayed on her belly, told her some medical issues to check and low and behold not long after she was pregnant.  Amanda had gone to see her and said it was such a powerful experience we just needed to go.

Now I was very skeptical at first after hearing about this.  To me it almost sounded as though she were a psychic of some sort which I did not believe in.  Plus I didn’t want to walk into a meeting with someone and get false hope when we have been told medically children aren’t going to be possible for us.  So I started asking around about her.  It seemed like every time I mentioned her someone had gone to see her or knew someone who had gone to see her and she was on point.  I heard stories of illness that was discovered where doctors said there wasn’t, I heard stories of suffering from cancer because God was using them as a sign of strength, I heard stories of terminal illness that was cured in the time frame she said.  It just amazed me that so many people had heard about her when I never had before.  It also interested me that they heard about her just when they needed help or strength.

Terry and I decided to make an appointment with her.  We had no idea what to expect but on Lundi Gras we met with her.  She was a very short chubby lady in a wheel chair.  We immediately learned that she was very honest in her opinions so we had no idea what she was going to say.  She looked at me and asked if I had recently gotten my thyroid check, which I had, and she said its going to take many many months for that to get regulated, but when you do you will get pregnant.  I looked at her like she was nuts.  We went to meet with her to help us in the grieving process of not being able to have children.  Instead she told us we were for sure going to be having our own baby.  She prayed on my belly and spoke to God who she calls Papa.  She looked at me and said “papa says you need to lay off the salty snacks”.  I made a funny face at her because even though I may be on the heavy side I am usually not much on snacking.  She looked back at me and said “the cokes”.  Now at that I shut up because my biggest problem is drinking too many cokes.

She went on to pray on Terry and speak with him saying he needs to be careful with his heart because it could be hardening.  At this point I was ready to call a cardiologist immediately because she was making me nervous.  She left us saying that we needed to go back and see her and that when I get pregnant I’m to call her immediately because I will not have an easy pregnancy and she will need to help me through it.  I have no idea if any of this will come to pass.  What I do know is that recently one of her predictions from Papa not only came true but has come true in detail!

I’m not sure how it works.  If she really has a direct line to God or she just gives you hope to get yourself healthier and pray harder and work harder for yourself.  Whatever it is I have heard so many stories of hope with her name attached to it.  Who knows maybe you are reading this post because you needed to hear about her.

check out her website:  http://www.cypressspringsprayercenter.org/index.html

 

Disney World Blues

I am sad today.  Because of many unforeseen circumstances a long planned Disney World trip we were going on for school had to be cancelled.  It would be less than a month away and it bums me out.  Its no one’s fault but it still stinks.  Why, because Disney World may just be my most favorite place in the whole wide world.  I don’t care if you think it is overrated.  I don’t care if you think it is overpriced.  To me it is nothing but MAGICAL.

So instead of pouting today I will share my Disney knowledge.  I’ve become a mini expert on Disney vacation planning so if I can’t use it myself at least I can put it out into the universe for someone else to learn.

My Top 10 Disney World Vacation Tips and Fun Facts

1.  Go Ride the Mine Train!!! The Newest addition to Fantasy Land has opened.  The seven dwarfs mine train.  The ride is not only a thrilling roller coaster but also includes a musical number from the dwarfs themselves

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2.  From mid September to mid November its the annual Food and Wine Festival at Epcot.  With over 25 different culinary booth its a must for any foodie.  Don’t miss out on the Grand Marnie Slushy in France or the cheddar cheese soup in Canada.

3.  Meeting characters is not just for the kiddos.  My favorite thing to do is to talk to face characters.  If you are from Louisiana make sure to visit Tianna and Naveen and tell them which parish you are from.

4.  Looking for a different resort experience, try Fort Wilderness.  This was the absolutely coolest place to stay.  We traveled in January with my mom and Paul and we stayed in the camper.  There were late night camp fires, large clean bath houses, sing along, and horse riding.  The coolest thing to me was traveling by boat to the Magic Kingdom.  Terry and I were lucky enough to take our own gondola boat early one morning and its a memory I will never forget.

5.  Learn the rules of the My Magic + System.  Sure it may seem like a hassle now but its totally worth it.  You can book all of your Fast passes 30 days in advance.  That way on the day of there is no chaos of running around the park trying to get passes for hours later.  This system is great for being able to plan your day ahead of time.

6.  Go find your favorites.  When I went a few years ago with choir to Disney World I tried to be the grown up, but when it came time to meeting Ariel all bets were off.  She has been my friend since I was a little girl and I literally cried after meeting her.  Yes I know its a college age child in a costume acting but to me it was just as special as meeting THE mermaid herself.

7.  Try new things in Epcot.  There are lots of things to see in the World Showcase.  Many take this park for granted because it does not have the same amount of rides as the others but there is still lots of fun to be had.  Take a ride on Maelstrom in Norway, have a margarita in Mexico or my personal favorite pick a pearl in Japan.

8.  Book your dinner reservations now!  Even if you don’t use it book it.  You can start booking dining reservations 180 days in advance.  If you want to eat at Be Our Guest Restaurant you better mark down the date because you will not be getting in otherwise. Some of the best restaurants I recommend  Via Napole in Epcot, Sci Fi Dine Inn in Hollywood Studios, Yak and Yeti in Animal Kingdom and Crystal Palace in Magic Kingdom.  Also don’t miss great food options in Downtown Disney like T-Rex Cafe or Earl of Sandwich.

9.  Do try the animation studios drawing class in Hollywood Studios.  Even if you do not consider yourself an artist this is so much fun.  A Disney animator will teach you to draw one of your favorite characters and then you have a souvenir to keep.

10.  Enjoy yourself.  There is no other place like Disney World.  Try Everything.  Audition for a part in Belle’s Enchanted Tales.  Try new food.  Ride Mount Everest even though it scares you to death.  Watch Tinkerbell fly over the castle.  Kiss Mickey Mouse on the nose.  Do it all.  Don’t leave regretting anything.

Counting My Blessings

bad luck

Today is just one of those days.  The kind that you just want to throw in the towel and give up.  What is that saying…If it weren’t for bad luck, I’d have no luck at all.  Yea that is my life these days.  Or at least it seems to me.  But that is my perception and I need to take a step back and realize that it could always be worse.  So instead of rattling off a list of all the sucky things happening to me lately I will instead choose the high road and make a list of my blessing.

I have a roof over my head

I have a car to drive

I have a job

I have a husband who loves me

I have a family that would do anything for me

I have best friends I can always call on

I have food to eat

I woke up this morning to live another day

These thoughts will get me through the rest of this week.  Even though I am tired and run down it will get better.  Because when you’ve hit the bottom there is nowhere to go but up.

The Dreaded Pinterest Project

My doctor told me I need to start doing things for me to get over some of my anxiety.  I’ve tried to take his advice and have invested more time in things I like.  I’ve read more books, matched more movies, talked to more people and done some art projects.  By no means would I call myself truly artistic but I do love a good craft project.

Ever since Pinterest came out all you ever hear about is how bad someone fails at a project.  You always see people pinning ideas or saying how bad they are at it but you very seldom see success stories.  I’m not tooting my own horn here but I’ve had some major success with things I’ve gotten off of Pinterest.  There have been some really yummy recipes I now incorporate in my list of dinner options such as the copy cat recipe for roasted tomato soup that I had in California at the Corner Bakery.  Or the cool workout shirt I made for Show Choir Camp last year.  Or this super awesome pig I made out of rice crispy treats for our Hunger Games Lock In last year.

he did have an apple in his mouth with an arrow through it at one point
he did have an apple in his mouth with an arrow through it at one point

I’ve decided to try some more projects in the near future.  Here is a list of some projects I plan to try before the end of the year:

Slow Cooker Pot Roast

Fried Ravioli

Craft Room Organization

Mom’s Wedding Centerpieces

Work outs for those with asthma

Vanilla Extract for Christmas

Happy Pinning everyone and may the Pinterest Gods be ever in your favor!

May The Best Woman Win

My husband may say otherwise if you catch me on the right day, but I am not a sassy lady.  I do however love women who fully embody that word.  S-A-S-S-Y.  And when I say women I really mean Drag Queens!  I have a serious devotion for these ladies.  I enjoy seeing their transformation, I love how much prettier they can make themselves look then me and I especially love when they can make me laugh.  All of that awesomeness is rolled into one on Rupaul’s Drag Race.  I have an obsession.  Seriously.  Last year I waited every week in anticipation for the next episode.  This particular season had a queen featured by the name of Bianca Del Rio.  She is the coolest most awesome person ever.  I want to be friends with her…definitely not her enemy because she will call you out quicker than you can look at her.  The lovely Bianca ended up winning the title of America’s Next Drag Superstar and I was so excited.  What made it even better…..she is from here!!!!! Right here in Louisiana.  Which means she would eventually make her way back home to do some shows. Then low and behold I hear about this

BIANCA141019logo

The Bianca Del Rio is going to Splash.  The Splash that is no less than 5 minutes away from my home.  If I ever needed an excuse to venture out of my house this would be it.  Now if I can just figure out how to buy tickets and get me an entourage to come along I’m all set.  So…who wants to go to a drag show?

Get Happy Playlist

Something that makes me genuinely happy is music.  It doesn’t matter what it is country, classical, pop, hip hop, oldies…I love it all.  With football season upon us I’ve been looking up music for our field playlist.  While doing that I have found some songs that make me genuinely happy to jam out to.  Some old, some new but all AWESOME.  Here is my Get Happy Playlist

All About That Bass – Meghan Trainor

 Bang Bang – Jessie J, Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj

Stand Out – Powerline (A Goofy Movie)

Booty Wurk – T Pain

Wild Nights – Van Morrison

You’ll be Okay – A Great Big World

 Friend Like Me – Aladdin Original Broadway Cast

Steal My Kisses – Ben Harper

You Make My Dreams Come True – Hall and Oates

Sunshine – Jonathan Edwards

La Vie En Rose – Louis Armstrong

My biggest jam right now that I am sort of ashamed to say is Taylor Swift Shake it Off.  I know I’m embarrassed but its just so catchy.  Gonna run now.  Taylor is on and I need to go dance in the living room.

Geaux Tigers

Since today is the first LSU home game of the season I wanted to go back and remember some good times at Tiger Stadium.  Unfortunately I was not able to afford my season ticket this year so I won’t be going to any games.  As much as a bummer as that is I can truly say there is not better place to be on a Saturday night then in Death Valley.  From the time we were little my mom used to ask us every year “would you like to go on a family vacation or do you want LSU season tickets?”  The answer every single year was football, which for a family of four girls may seem odd.  We had more fun sitting in that north endzone than any vacation we could have gone on.  It wasn’t until the last few years that the 4 of us stopped going together and instead brought friends or boyfriends.  It never is quiet the same though.  We’ve made friends all around us. We’ve watched kids grow up each year just like they’ve watched us grow. We’ve yelled and stomped and clapped until we couldn’t anymore.  We pouted as the fans rushed the field after a victory and mom wouldn’t let us join in the fun.  We’ve sat in the locker room with Papa looking at all of the jerseys.  We’ve hit the Win post walking out onto the field before sprinting across to the endzones and taking pictures on the eye of the tiger.  We’ve danced and tailgated and laughed and really enjoyed each other.  I’ve got such fond memories as a family on LSU campus that I will never forget.  Now lets see if our Tigers can get a win tonight without giving us a heart attack.  Even though we won’t be together I’m sure the 4 of us will all have something to say on Sunday morning about the game.

Strike A Pose

I wear many hats at the Lab School. Here lately one of the bigger hats I tend to wear is that of athletic social media guru.  In a world that is so technology driven it was inevitable that school systems start using social media sites in different ways.  Our front office uses Twitter and Facebook to communicate with parents, students and alumni to share news and announcements for the school.  This will be my 3rd year as the voice behind the @UHScubathletics Twitter page.  I’ve also added the use of Facebook, Instagram, and Vine to the means of communication I share.  This is actually pretty fun for me.  No one really knows who posts on these sites unless they ask me.  Its like I’m the Gossip Girl of U High Athletics.

I also have become somewhat of an amateur photographer for our athletics department as well.  I have worked for Mr Bobby Montero since I was in 9th grade packaging pictures, handling orders, and doing paperwork.  I few years ago he had to leave an event and needed someone to take pictures.  It started with dancing then progressed to weddings and team pictures.  I don’t think I’m any kind of genius behind a camera lens but I have come to love taking pictures.  As a thank you last year Mr Bobby gave me my own fancy Nikon D40.  You would think he had given me pure gold.  I’ve used that camera to shoot engagement pictures,  arts performances and even on the field of the Superdome shooting the football state championship game.

As I started this year with an athletic event I realized that my precious Nikon was not working out for the action shots I need for athletics.  I took a shot in the dark asking my athletic director could I possibly purchase a school camera for athletics that I can use.  In her awesomeness she said “go for it”.  So last Friday I excitedly purchased a Canon Rebel T5i that I am waiting oh so impatiently to try out.  I’ve been watching tutorial videos and learning as much as I can so that I will be ready to use it as soon as it comes in.  So for all of you Cub fans out there beware because I will be all over the place taking pictures and they will be posted on every social media website I can think of.  Hooray for U HIGH!!!

Canon Rebel T5i
Canon Rebel T5i

Mental Health and Missing My Babies

This isn’t easy for me to talk about, but I know I will feel better once I share my story.  A few weeks ago I stepped down as choreographer for the performing arts programs at the Lab School.  This includes my work with the show choir and theatre department in any capacity.  I had a very hard couple of weeks that resulted in multiple panic attacks, physical illness and fear of leaving my home and missing work for almost an entire week.  My stress and anxiety had gotten so bad to the point that I was making myself sick every time I needed to walk out of my house.  After seeing my doctor and switching medicines and taking some time off I am starting to feel better physically.  Mentally that is another story.  I luckily have such a wonderful group of coworkers and supervisors who genuinely care about me and my well being and are extremely understanding.  It is very difficult for people to understand mental health issues.  If I were physically ailing there would be signs of it and no one would be able to questions that.  Unfortunately mental health is not something you can see and it makes my anxiety worse to think that anyone would think I’m faking it or making it all up.  It was through the support of my supervisors and coworkers that I stepped down for my own well being.  I need to spend some serious time figuring out how to make me better.  That will be much easier if I am not keeping myself so busy every single day that I can not face my problems.

All of that being said I miss my sweet babies so much.  I know they are in wonderful hands with their new choreographer but it causes me a considerable amount of pain to think that I have let them down in any way.  I have some very special kids that are seniors this year that I have been with from the beginning and I will not be there to share that special time with them all year.

10149829_10103249129141185_8114912808917488825_n                      Premiere Company end of the year show

I haven’t hidden it but it isn’t something I share completely openly that Terry and I have struggled with infertility for a long time.  After 3 years of trying numerous options we were given the very sad news that pregnancy would not happen for us.  And although I am extremely open to adoption there is a grieving process that happens when you get that sort of news.  In the midst of that though I had my babies.  Performing arts not only gave me a creative outlet for my love of music, dance and theatre but it also gave me a purpose.  I spent my days and nights coming up with great ideas for the kids.  These kids who found their home in the performing arts.  I didn’t need to be sad about not having my own children because I had my own set of kids already.  I love them with all of my heart.

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It will be very hard for me to not share this year with them.  But I know in my heart that I have left a mark on their lives.  Even if it was a very small part there is no way you can give so much of yourself and it not stick with them.  I just need to remember that I am still in the same place I’ve always been, stuck in the back cubicle of the main office, and their hugs and smiles will be there no matter where I am.