Friday, January 31, 2014

It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing.

A couple of years ago, my aunt asked me to accompany her to a wedding.  When I found out who was to be married, I was pleasantly surprised.

My aunt and her husband Leonard were the bride's mentors throughout her career as a singer. Angela Teek has had a long career in entertainment from Star Search (the original American Idol) to Broadway and beyond. Since she has been a friend of the family, I didn't see her entertainment side of life as often. I always looked up to her as an independent woman who pursued her talents day after day. When she visited, she always had interesting stories of people she had seen and places she had been.

So I went to the wedding and I brought my camera with me. I was dissatisfied that I didn't have more gear to do a really legit job, but my aunt assured me that Angela would be happy with whatever I would capture. It was a simple wedding and there were some very interesting people there. I met a dancer from Dancing with the Stars and other creatives that Angela had worked with in 'the business' over the years.

During the reception, Angela got on the microphone, and I immediately got in filming mode. Live music is still my favorite thing to capture. There is always an element of surprise and liveliness to seeing a performance. Before that night, I think I had only seen Angela perform once or twice live. I had cut a sizzle reel for her when she was working on cruise ships, but that just wasn't the same.

For this little performance that I had the pleasure of seeing, Angela's seasoned voice caught me by surprise. Her band was wonderful and followed her lead as she entertained us all. She sang these songs at the request of her husband, in her white wedding dress, and I knew I was a part of a very special moment.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

boogie woogie on the piano.

I've had this melody stuck in my head for two days.

Sister Mary Clarence signals for the choir to smile. Their voices open and a peaceful vibration enters the church. The nuns in the front pews are surprised. The 'misfit' group they had dismissed had found a fitting leader.

Then, the choir begins to clap their hands to a new, more energized beat. Each of the singer's voices ring clear and true. Before long, Sister Mary Clarence is twirling and dancing at the front of the stage. Her arms flail overhead and the altar boys tap their feet to the rhythm. Some passersby stop in the church to hear their joyful sound.

The level of energy in the room skyrockets as the choir nears its finish. Kathy Najimy as Sister Mary Patrick is my absolutely favorite.


Saturday, December 21, 2013

Christmas on Toledo St.

Christmas was always a holiday I looked forward to as a kid.
If I was good, I increased my chances of receiving a bounty of beautifully wrapped gifts under the tree.

Each year, we exchange gifts with others as a symbol of love.
We enjoy food and time with them to rejuvenate our souls for the impending new year.

This year I bought my first Christmas tree. I never thought that something so simple could give me so much joy.

I suppose it's because I have not enjoyed Christmas the last few years. At least not as much as I used to.

I was not unhappy. I was... elsewhere. I was unsure how to enjoy the holiday when I had conflicted feelings about my year. I was always optimistic. I just had a lot on my mind.

I did remain focused. I pushed myself to find the joy, the right kind of enjoyment that I was seeking.

I am grateful to have this moment to reflect. I have so many things to appreciate in this time.

...and I always have.

Though this year, it is different.

The joy I was seeking is before me, in the simple, sparkling, plug-in tree by the window. It is in my table covered with red, green, and silver ribbon and other craft supplies. It is in spending Friday night on the couch at home recovering from a week long cold. It is in my sweetheart's warm eyes. It is in the smiley emoticons and messages from mom and dad.

It is here.

Here, at home.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Mis Equipos

my teams.

I belong to many.

Some have influenced my life in the past.
Some are developing right now, challenging me, maturing me.

My teams, or equipos, equip me with the things I need to be a better human being.

I am proud of the make-up of all of the special teams I've been a part of.
I think fondly to how I'm more experienced as a result of our time together.

mis equipos.

who is on your team?


Two awesome ladies :) <3

Playing Guess Who?


Adventure time. #maui

Saturday, September 14, 2013

my favorite things.

flowers. sneakers. dinner outdoors.
tequila. painting. New House chores.
lovin' and kisses and weekends and Spring.
these are a few of my favorite things.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

peace in amsterdam.

It has been over a month since we ventured into Amsterdam.
After the trip, life moved along hazily. It took a while, with all the newness, to get back in my groove.

Now, in a bit more of a peaceful place, I have gotten things done.

Looking back at the photos I took in Amsterdam gives me peace and warmth, with a thoughtful hopefulness.

It was a memorable trip, in more ways than one.
Thinking back, I'm grateful for each moment. For the opportunity to be so fortunate.

More photos of our Amsterdam trip here.