Saturday, March 29, 2008

Not bad for a 14 hour day...

Seriously, if I could get three extra hours in a day right now, that'd be perfect. Assuming I could spend those three hours like this: one more hour of sleep, one more hour of tkd and/or FIGHT, and one more hour to just get things done here at home. My Easter basket got delivered yesterday to my neighbors (they hold things for me sometimes), and I have yet to find a time to get it from them that is not 1:00a or later. Maybe I can get it tomorrow morning, if they're home.

And to clarify, today was supposed to be a 12 hour day, with teaching kickboxing thrown in over dinner in an attempt to truly prove my insanity. Chrissy hasn't been feeling well the past few days, though, and around 10:00p last night (in the middle of rehearsal), she texted me asking if I could teach the first years' stage management class this morning at 10:30a. No lesson plan, but I knew what the topic was supposed to be (tech rehearsals, previews, and a few other things), so I spent last night trying to think of anything I could talk about on those topics. I ended up starting with the "What do YOU think a stage manager does during tech?" and then we talked about the answers they came up with. Far, far easier to let your students create your lesson plan, really. And, I got the first years talking in class! Woo!

So anyway, class until noon (we ended about half an hour early, actually, because I needed a lunch break), then rehearsal, then teaching kickboxing (six people plus me, which is the biggest I've had so far), then back to rehearsal. Surprisingly, though, I was not dead by the end of it. I don't know if it's because of or in spite of doing the kickboxing. I got a decent amount of sleep last night, ate breakfast (*dingding!* ), drank only water, and continued eating small things throughout the day instead of any large meals (yogurts, fruit cups, granola bars, and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are my bestest friends this week - they are perfect for 10 minute breaks in rehearsal). I have two more double days (one with kickboxing again in the middle of it) and a triple day (Sunday) that I have to get through before tech, though, so we'll see if today was a fluke or not.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

One scraped up ankle later...

...and I have a red belt! Which will look absolutely terrible with the new blue doboks, so I have added incentive to get my black belt soon! The new logos on the back are much cooler, though. (Sir recommended getting a heavy weight, although the lazy part of me is going "I already get hot enough in my medium weight uniform!" He pointed out, though, that after training in a heavy weight dobok, everything else will feel like pajamas. Also, the black instructors' doboks are only available in heavy weight. And those still aren't as heavy as Sir's ATA dobok. That thing is like iron.) The belts are actually a different style, too - the gold leadership stripes are much thinner (yay!), and the belts themselves are long enough to double-wrap. Just when I finally get able to properly tie a single-wrap belt consistently, they go and change it up! Geez, people! Anyway, I am hoping to get my new uniform on Monday, and will try to get pics up soon. (I realized I'd scraped my ankle - most likely on my board break - when I noticed blood stains on the hem of my white dobok. Sigh.) They do already have some of the new t-shirts in, a basic white with Haganah*Taekwondo*Fitness Kickboxing across the front and the new logo on the back. I told Sir it was nice of them to finally get a shirt that had all my classes on it. He just laughed. Anyway, we are having class on Monday now (normally, they don't have class on the Monday after testings), which is awesome, because it means I won't miss two full weeks of class and will get to start learning the new forms and stuff along with everyone else. I was able to do kickboxing yesterday, and am teaching it tomorrow, so at least I'm getting some work in this week.

And I desperately need to punch things this week. Double rehearsals every day except today (only evening rehearsal tonight, which is why I could test this afternoon) plus meetings and paperwork make for a Very Long Week. It doesn't help that we are moving so slowly through the show that I am starting to get worried that we will not get the show staged before tech. I'm sure we will, but yikes! Life x3 opens this weekend to run in rep with Art. I won't get to see it until after Godspell opens, but it sounds like fun.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter!

(Yes, I'm a sucker for cheezburger.)

We get today AND tomorrow off, so I'm spending Easter cleaning, how exciting and fun is that?! Very necessary, though, I've been a bit of a slob since rehearsals started. Time to get that remedied. And I desperately need to clean my car out. I had to take my bike in to get the tires refilled last week, and it's still sitting in the back of my car, plus my sparring gear, my hard hat for work, and a bunch of the other junk and trash cars accumulate when you practically live in them. My new heavy bag should be coming in this week and I want to be able to pick it up ASAP!

Almost done with the first HSS3 sock - I know, it's taking forever. I'm planning on finishing the sock and starting the second this weekend. I've also been working on the Mountain Colors drop stitch scarf in the evenings after rehearsal, and am almost through the first skein of yarn for that. It's already almost four feet - after finishing this skein, knitting the second, and blocking it, I'll be really interested to see how long it turns out to be!

Dojahng stuff (including black belt testing dates!) behind the cut.
I had my final pre-testing lesson on Thursday and set up a time for my red belt test (Thursday, March 27, so this coming week - new uniforms after this test!). Sir did things a little differently with me this week, though. Usually he has me focus on my form technique during the private classes. This time, we focused on sparring and strategy - putting combinations together and how to figure out what works for my body and style. It was awesome. It's hard for me to practice some of the things we discussed when we spar with the kids, just because of height/strength/mental differences (I don't have to worry about kicks to the head very often in sparring class, for example, only a few of the adults have a chance for that, and kids just don't think about sparring the same way adults do), so it was really great for me to be able to just drill over and over with someone approximately my size and strength. He'd give me a combination, have me work it, then add distractions or fake-outs or height changes to it. SO helpful! Of course, the real test will be Thursday to see if I can retain any of this without actually being able to practice it. Sparring is my weakest area simply because I can't practice it as often as I can everything else. Sir said that when I get my bag, he'll give me some footwork drills for it, but it's not the same and he knows it. Luckily, I actually should be able to hit a bunch of sparring classes around midsummer, which will be nice!

Speaking of summer and martial arts, I got the potential dates for my black belt test!! It will either be Saturday, July 26 or Monday, July 28. They are going to try to do testings on Mondays over the summer, to get around vacations and other summer sports that happen on weekends, but if that doesn't work out, they will move the testings back to Saturdays. Black belts MUST test for rank on an official testing day - you can't do a private test for dan (black belt) rankings, only gup (color belt) rankings - and they just happened to pick a.)a day I ALWAYS have off (Monday) or b.)one of the few Saturdays all year that I have completely off! How's that for fate? (And it's the weekend Godspell closes, so potentially lots to celebrate that weekend. Or lots to cry about, one of the two! =) ) I have a LOT of work to do between now and then!

And I've been invited, as part of the instructor class, to help out with a martial arts demo at the local YMCA on April 12. Normally, I wouldn't be able to do a Saturday afternoon because of rehearsal or matinees, but that one just happens to be Opening Night for Godspell, so as long as nothing tragic happens during the preview the night before, I should have it off. Someone up there is allowing these schedules to blend far better than they really should, and I much appreciate it!

Godspell is going a little slower than the directing team (director, musical director, choreographer) was planning on, I think, but the cast continues to pick things up quickly and have fun with the material. (I'd be happier if they'd stop singing the songs in the halls between classes, though. I really really love this soundtrack, but I'm kind of over having all the songs stuck in my head all day. I don't like the arrangement of "We Beseech Thee" we're doing, though. It feels too pick-up-your-hymnals-and-turn-t0-page-343-Baptist-churchy, and I like the more rock version of it on the 2001 soundtrack much better. Maybe it will sound different with the full band.) There's just so much of it! We have double rehearsals almost all week this coming week, and we move into the theater and start tech a week from this coming Friday! Time is flying by! This week is going to be a long week - we had Friday night off to see Art (it's fabulous, btw, anyone in the area should really go see it), did a double rehearsal yesterday, have today and tomorrow off, then go back into double rehearsals for most of the week. It's almost a summer schedule and no one is used to that during the school year. I'm going to have no idea what day of the week it is!

I've been on a Bones kick lately - watching episodes when I get home from rehearsal at night. I might have to go up to SLO tomorrow to hit Barnes and Noble and pick up some of Kathy Reich's books (the author whose books and life the show is based on). I need a new series, as my usual ones are either all caught up or still in hardcover. I'm too hard on books to pay for hardcovers. Only if I get stuff clean here first, though.

And one of the best puns I've heard in a while:

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Delayed Pics and Opposite Actions

A few pics stolen from the guy in the bottom photo from the Othello opening party.

I don't wear that necklace very often, as it kind of requires just the right neckline and style, but I always get tons of compliments on it. I love it!

I don't get to go to Art's opening party tonight (Say it with me, "I can't, I have rehearsal..."), but I do get to see it next week and I'm very excited about it. I've seen that show once in New York with Judd Hirsch (front row seats, it was FANTASTIC!), and we did it at Purdue my senior year (I didn't work on it, though. I'm pretty sure it was AF Guy's show while I worked on...whatever show I was working on at the time.). It's SUCH a good show, and knowing the guys in it will make it that much better. I actually get to see the understudy rehearsal tomorrow night before I get to see the actual cast, so that will be really interesting.

Now for the opposite actions. I forgot how much time it takes to wind down at night after rehearsal, and have been forced to rework my sleep schedule. The good thing, is that this has also meant that I have had no time to work out at all since Monday. This is good because my elbow has been bothering me all week, to the point where I finally called the doctor back on Thursday night and he sent me in to get it x-rayed Friday. (Nurse Lady, who has been...nagging isn't the right word, she's awfully nice about it, but you get the about it every time she sees me in the dojahng, gave me the "Finally!" look when I walked in the doctors' office.) I'm a little confused, since everyone seems to think it's a muscle or tendon problem, not a bone problem, but maybe the x-ray is to rule out bone problems? This is why I do not get paid the big bucks. They're supposed to call me back and let me know the results within 24-48 hours, but as it's a weekend, I'll be happy if I hear from them on Monday. It seems to be triggered not by stretching it, like when you punch, but more often by carrying things. It doesn't like doing pushups and the plank (a pilates move I picked up in kickboxing), either.

The opposite action to the fact that my elbow hurts enough that I had to go get it x-rayed and am a little glad that I haven't worked out at all is that I went in yesterday and put in an order for a standing heavy bag (the same kind we use at the dojahng) to put in my garage. My garage isn't huge, and I don't have mirrors for formwork or mats/partners for self-defense, but I should have more than enough room to do the kickboxing workouts, and I can push the bag to the side to give me some room for forms. I can always snag a rehearsal room if I need the mirrors, but it will be good to get used to working without them. The bag should get here in about two weeks - probably just after testing and that should give my elbow some quality time off. If I can get away with not moving too much furniture in rehearsal.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


There has been knitting, but mostly on my HSS3 socks, so I'm not posting pictures. I had the foot of the first sock almost completely done, then decided the pattern really wasn't working for me, so frogged back to the toe and started in a different pattern. Thanks to a Bones marathon on Sunday (tv shows on dvd are the best idea ever!), I'm through the heel and have about an inch done so far on the leg. And frankly, I'm jealous - I've finally gotten this pattern to work for me, and I'll have to give the socks away! (And pray that they fit my pal!) I still have to do the second sleeve of the BB Sweater, but the socks are on a deadline. I should have deadlines for all my projects, that seems to be the only way I actually get them done!

Friday was very fun. Got stuck at work, so only got to do about half of kickboxing class, then sparring, then Klondikes for beer, pizza, and cake! I got a few decent pics (the lighting in Klondikes is pretty dim, so the flashes kind of made things a little difficult). We have the birthday boy (Baby S) and dad (Sir). This was taken pre-cake serving. You can tell because there is no blue icing on anything. (Sound familiar, Mom?) Post-cake, Baby S, Sir, Mrs. S, and I were all very blue. (One of the hazards of being loved, I guess.) There was only blue icing on the very edge of the cake, too - it's amazing how it spreads!

We didn't open a lot of presents at the party (because, really, squishing cake between fingers and getting icing all over creation is far more important when you're one!), but Ma'am really wanted to see the Hedgehog:
She wants one, now, too! Her birthday is in December, though, so she's gonna have to wait! Mrs. S also thought it was adorable and the perfect size for Baby S to carry around. She's actually a little worried it will get loved to death, but I assured her that I could make a new one if that happened. (I didn't get a good pic of Mrs. S - I tried to get one of her with Sir and Baby, but it was too dark from where I was sitting.)

And, of course, what is a party without a lot of goofing around, creating chaos, and generally setting bad examples for the kids? Not that Mel and I would do anything like that, of course:
Can't you see the halos over our heads? For some reason, we weren't allowed to sit at the big kids' table (mostly because we arrived with Baby S, so all the other seats were taken), but I'd like to point out that we got hit by peanut shells before we started throwing them back. We were just defending ourselves (and the beer - I was splitting pitchers with Ma'am, Sir, and Mrs. S - Mel's too young).

Our innocence is proven - TKD grandson, me, and Mel hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil. Which we could have pulled off better if Mel hadn't been elbowing me in the ribs the whole time.

At any rate, a fun time was had by all, and I'm not looking forward to missing Friday nights again. I started the private lesson thing back up again yesterday - Monday was the only day Sir could fit me in this week - which means that yes, I did FOUR classes yesterday. I got drilled on reverse hook kicks and reverse side kicks in the afternoon, then went and started taping out my set at work, which involves lots of squatting and getting up and down, then went back to the dojahng and did kickboxing, tkd, and instructor class. My legs are still tired! I'm really really liking double bahng mahng ees, though. I think we're going to start forms with them next week. I'm also definitely going to get a 12-pound medicine ball for home, and I'm thinking about investing in a heavy bag. That way I can at least get some kicking and punching drills in. I'm thinking about keeping it in the garage. I'll have to see how finances trickle out, though.

And, as much as I will miss class and the dojahng (and trust me, I will. Last night as we were packing up, Mr. R did the "See you on Wednesday!" thing. When I said that I wasn't going to be back until Monday, he accused me of abandoning them. Sigh!), I am very much looking forward to this:
(photo credited to Luis Escobar and Reflections Photography studio). It's so rare that we get a real cast photo for shows, but Godspell (more pics on the site) is such a truly ensemble piece that it was really the only option for our publicity photos. It's also unusual for us to have so many students (second AND first years!) taking the prominent roles in the show. We only have three RAs involved in it, and only one of them is Equity. It will be a great experience for the students, and they already have such a good energy and are so excited about this show. It will be awesome to work on this with them!

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Last moments of freedom...

Only a few more days until I go into rehearsals again. On the one hand, it will be nice to be back in a show again. I haven't had my own show since last summer, and Godspell is going to be high-energy, tech heavy, lots of fun. On the other hand, I'll have significantly less time do work on things like this:
Finished the baby blanket tonight. It's about 32"x32", although my blocking board is only 30" wide, so it's blocking at those measurements. A trip through the washer and dryer and some use will stretch it out some, I'm sure. The colors aren't showing up quite as well in the photos, sadly.

I did get to meet Amie from Ravelry and her two charming children the other day when she needed a ball winder and swift. I volunteered mine, so she stopped by before class on Monday. Her little girl brought me these:

that she picked all by herself! (They bloomed yesterday.) And apparently, balance exercise balls are THE coolest toys ever to three-year-olds. I must remember this. While Amie and I had a nice chat, got the yarn wound, and giggled at the kids, Teddie, sadly, did not enjoy the company. This is the first time since he's lived here that children have been around, and apparently small humans are beneath his dignity to deal with. (However, toys and blankets for small humans are apparently fair game, as he's already curled up on the drying baby blanket - it is being covered with another blanket to prevent too much cat hair transfer.)

Tonight was my last FIGHT class for six weeks. Sigh! The guys didn't find out until afterwards, and threatened to give me a sendoff (a two- to five-minute drill of just fending off attackers over and over and over) like they gave Ian when he left for the Coast Guard, but Sir wouldn't let them, since I am coming back eventually. Of course, if his threats for that first class back are any indication, I might want to stock up on some ibuprofen and icepacks beforehand.

Tomorrow is Baby S's birthday party (Mrs. S will be happy to see that I did not get Baby S the set of pots and pans and metal spoons to bang them with that I threatened to - I have a private lesson next week, I'm not stupid!), and I'll try to get some pics. It's also my last night of sparring for a while. I'm going to try to get some of my interns together for mini-golf or something this weekend, too, if the weather is nice. Gotta take advantage of this last weekend of freedom!

I'd also like to point out that, while I may be insane, during this time period last year (end of January - beginning of March), I was bored out of my skull and suffering from a mild insomnia. I was doing one class one night a week, watching too much television (okay, I always watch too much television), and really had no one to do birthday parties and weekends and whatnot with. This year, I've pretty consistently done seven to ten classes per week, not to mention the socialness of being around the people at the dojahng, knitting group, and the fact that our office at work was moved to CBC, which makes it a hot spot for people to drop in for chats. I've been dropping off by midnight or 1:00a pretty consistently. I'm hoping I can get away with not changing my sleep schedule too much with rehearsals - I'm probably going to have to start working out in the mornings. Sigh...

Sunday, March 02, 2008


I wish my elbow would just make up it's mind whether or not it's going to hurt. I've kept up on the medicine, but have only been icing it when it hurts. It hadn't bothered me all day on Friday, so I did both kickboxing and sparring, and my arm got really tired and sore by about halfway through sparring. (Nurse checked up on me during class because she could see that I wasn't using the arm much. She wants me to get it checked out.) I figured I would have to ice it when I got home that night, but it didn't really hurt as much as it was just uncomfortable. By the time we all left Klondikes, it actually didn't hurt at all! It didn't bother me much yesterday, either, except for a few small twinges, but today I was writing out my grocery list and it started hurting again! Argh! At least have some kind of consistency with what triggers it to hurt! Mrph!

Yesterday was rather nice, actually. It was a little grey and not quite so warm as it has been this week, so I had an excellent day doing most of my cleaning (I actually put laundry away!), then curled up with the NCIS marathon on USA and worked on the baby blanket.
It's three-quarters done now. My initial plan was to increase to 126 sts, but that just wasn't big enough, so I decided to go with two skeins increasing and two skeins decreasing. (Very precise measurements, huh?) It's still a bit smaller than I would normally expect, but that's all the yarn I bought for this, so that's all I'm going to use. I think it will stretch and block out to a little bigger, too. I am hoping to finish it tonight or tomorrow.

I also finally got around to working with this:
My HSS3 yarn. I'm a terrible pal, I'm finally getting started almost a month into the swap! Yikes! I'm going to do a simple pattern, though, and once the baby blanket is done, these will get my full attention, so hopefully they will go quickly.
(And that's all the peeking you're going to get, sneaky HSS3 pal! =) )

I'm having a serious Coldstone Cremery craving this weekend, and I'm still looking for a nice cheerful yellow for another Hedgehog, so I might have to trek up to SLO again. Maybe today, maybe tomorrow. None of the LYSs are open on Mondays, sadly, and I'm not sure if any are open on Sundays, either, so other than getting out of the house, I don't know how successful of a trip it will be, but honestly, just getting out of the house is enough.

Kitty does not agree, though, and feels the need to snooze. He NEVER sleeps in his bed, which is why I've gotten sloppy and let so many cables (phone and camera chargers) fall near it, but it doesn't seem to phase him at all...
Silly kitty!

Scientists on the Discovery Channel are working on bringing dinosaurs back via genetic manipulation. While the whole idea is kind of cool, with human beings' current track record of introducing new animals into new eco-systems, what makes bringing large creatures that we really know little about (because they DIED OUT 65 million years ago, you think that might be a clue?) into our world seem like a good idea?? Vegitarian or carnivore, how are you going to feed the things??? And is it really a "dinosaur" ("thunder lizard") if it's the same size or smaller than our current lizards?? Or just a new (redone?) species of lizard? I get the importance of genetic research and think it's fascinating, but this one kind of has me going " really think this is a good idea?"