Thursday, August 31, 2006

Here Comes the Bride




Oh if only I had gotten these pix on my anniversary. Here I am pictured in the wedding hairdo I never had. I like the one on the bottom, and I think the one on the top is a good example of America's Next Top Model Challenge of identifying your flaw, and then trying to cover it up. In this case, I did not do a good job of hiding my ginormous elephant EARS.

This hairdo actually sort of resembles my senior prom hair (seen far right). Yikes. Anyway, I find this to be amusing, and it was actually pretty fun to shoot these bridal portraits that I never had taken.

There are a few really cool pix from this shoot now on the view page of my website. Some funky hair going on in one. This salon also took some pix of me with the extensions, but they weren't included on the CD of photos I picked up today. I am going to try to get my hands on a few. Oh, and to give credit where it is do, Frank, (my regular guy) did not do these hairdos and photos, this was a job for Paul Labrecque.

Last night I had a baby shower for a friend of mine having her first girl after a little boy. I haven't had a party in a long time, and it was so much fun. I have been really stressed lately, and my two other girlfriends helped in planning this a TON, and I am just so glad we did it. It was terrific food, great friends, and good fun. And if I do say so myself, I enjoyed the prize for the most answers right on the baby trivia quiz. It was a baby sock made into a coin purse from this store, but you won't find this particular product on the website, rats. I do recommend it though for random, fun gifts, especially stocking stuffers, housewarmings, or going away gifts. Or just because gifts.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

RAIN

I'm glad we aren't having a drought. But I am telling you, my fourth year in NYC, and the hurricane season is alive and well here. We get SO MUCH rain. It is so wet and cold and it makes particularly my older daughter very sad. I think she would benefit from light therapy on these days. She just cries.

On a brighter note, last night my DH and I spent a really nice evening dining at Fiamma. Half of the meal was on our friends who moved from NYC this past February and had some money left on a gift certficate...thanks guys. We were in Soho, so it was really nice to walk around there and see the shops and the stars, ok just one star, who wasn't looking very star-ish at the time, but had a really cool orange bag.

Then I came home to an email with a link to the Nuvaring Commercial. That was fun to watch. My notes: My teeth were whitened so much that in some shots they look blue. Also, the pace of the commercial is a lot more mellow than it FELT while shooting it. The pace of shooting was much more rapid fire. The giant non-smoking sign (just fyi) was giant, awkward and heavy. And the sign that I pull out was also heavy, even though a crew guy did most of the work. Everything else (besides the chair, actual nuvaring, and umbrella) was animated. Anyway, when you spot it on the telly, you can keep that in mind. And even though I hated my wardrobe, I think it works b/c the animation stands out.

Today I have an audition for VIOLIA....I am to ride a bike. Yikes.

Oh, and I put another raw track from the album up on the homepage of my website. It's Silent Night. And I am so happy with the guitar.


Tuesday, August 29, 2006

8 years....we made it...sigh



I have this rule in my house that on Sunday (our Sabbath Day), the kids can only watch a church-themed video or a home video. Some Sunday's this means we opt for no television at all, but this past weekend the girls wanted to see all the weddings. We watched my sister's, my friend's (E-dawg and Beth), and finally mine.

Whenever I watch a home video I look at that person on the screen and think: Wow, she is so young and energetic. Ok, I guess I still am, but having this second kid and more demands of my career, I feel old and tired. Then I put in my wedding video, and I think: Wow, I don't even remember that girl. I looked different, I was more immature, and I thought I knew so much.

Luckily I knew enough to marry the man I did. When asked how he (at 25) could possibly marry a 19-year-old girl, he replies: She had potential. And I think that it is safe to say 8 years later, that I did, and that I have done my best to fulfill that potential. And the same can be said about him. I looked at him on that video and realized that he has changed so much too. We have both grown up so much and most importantly learned how to have a great relationship. We communicate and express ourselves far better than we ever did during those dating months, and our love for each other has grown more than 8-fold over the past 8 years that we have been married.

I am so glad that I had the moxie I did to actually get married as a teenager to a MAN, 6 years older than me. Call me crazy or call me courageous, I think I was crazy with a little cocky mixed in there....but it has all worked out so well. I am so happy to have him as my husband, best friend and biggest supporter. And I am so grateful that he is the father of my children. I tell my girls all the time: Your welcome, for that Dad of yours.

PS...honey that photo on the right is for you because you told me I looked hot in it, about 4 times on Saturday, and I cannot remember a time when you thought I looked that good in something....so Happy Anniversary, I think I will wear it to our nice NYC anniversary dinner out tonight...rainboots and all. I hope what we eat is better than that yummy hamburger helper on the stove.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Good Vibe

As I have been recording my Christmas Album, I have tried to capture the message of the music and specifically of the Christmas season. My goal is to create something special that people can listen to and grow from. Unfortunately recording is a bit arduous. Your voice is exposed, every imperfection is there for you to listen to over and over again, and it takes a lot longer to record (hours and hours, Saturdays upon Saturdays), than the actual running time of the album.

Unlike performing live, you have a million chances to make one note, or a phrase or the entire song, PERFECT. As a result, it can become tedious and frustrating. I think I recorded "to hear the angels sing" (the last phrase of It Came Upon the Midnight Clear), at least 20 times. Since I strive to be the best I can be, often when I am stuck on a particular phrase or section of the music, I just have to stop myself, and revisit it the next time.

Often when I perform, especially spiritual music, I feel so emotionally connected to it, that sometimes I get emotional and break down. If I anticipate that a particular song has this affect on me, I can combat it by trying to think less about the message of the song, and more about the technique. Sometimes the emotions can take me by surprise and I do lose it a little bit in a piece. If this is the case, the spontaneity of it is usually accepted by the audience, because we are all feeling that way in that moment.

The point. While recording, there is not a lot of room for this emotional experience. It is more detail-oriented and repetitive, and scrutinizing. At the end of a recording session I can sometimes feel quite numb of all emotion and sometimes blank in my mind, like: "So...what did I just accomplish?" This is a stark contrast to performing live. After a performance you cannot rewind and criticize every little note, phrase or aspect of the performance, you are just left with the way you felt while doing it, and it is usually a positive feeling.

So, when my engineer, (after spending a portion of his week mixing about 5 tracks) said in a way that only he can: "This has got a good vibe going...", I felt relieved, glad, surprised, and happy. I have been so engulfed in the whole process, I needed a little good vibe oxygen to reassure me that this is going well, and it could possibly attain it's goal which is to touch people's lives through the message and the music. A good vibe going.

Friday, August 25, 2006

The Way We Live Part IV











In The Way We Live Part 4, we feature my spacious and giant apartment. The first few photos were taken for this photo essay, the rest I just dug up from past albums, and I am not necessarily proud of their composition, focus and subject matter.

Our first experiment with paint was with our red dining area. After two coats, we tried to convince ourselves that the job was done, but it really needed one more, so we put the tape back up, put the drop cloths down and painted one more coat. It was perfect. Then hurricane season came and created a lot of bubbling, and my third boob. After some rehabilitation, our wall is back to normal, almost. The corner that we fixed could still use one more coat of paint! The dining set was our first purchase as newylweds nearly 8 years ago. I am anxious to replace it with some vintage diner furniture.

We then decided to paint our family room/main living area. We chose a gold color that matched the golden yellow in our Blue Dog and CHICAGO: The Vacation City Prints. It turned out so nice, accept then we sat down to admire our job well done and realized that the juxtaposition of our dining area and family room reminded us of the Golden Arches of McDonalds...sigh...oh well.

I love my rug in this room and my clavanova...I don't play it enough, but it is so nice to know that it is there for my piano playing whims.

The third painting job was that of our girls' room. Our DD requested blue, so I tried to find a bright, cheery, girly blue, and it turned out so well. The only negative is that sometimes when I photograph them in their room, their skin has a blue hue to it.

The other two pix are of my kitchen, I don't know if you can see anything, but it has lots of white cabinets on either side, and stainless steel appliances. We also have a garbage disposal, which is a bit of a rarity because the ban on garbage disposals in NYC was lifted only 9 years ago.

For other WAY WE LIVES: (WWL's):
The Way We Live
The Way We Live Part II
The Way We Live Part III

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Mother Hater

I went to Costco yesterday to pick up a few healthy snacks for my children. I chose string cheese, bananas and some earth’s best organic alphabet cookies. I skipped the Cheez-its (even though I love them), because I am trying to avoid partially-hydrogenated soybean oil, as that can clog your arteries pretty good.

As I was packing up my grocery cart and trying my hardest to get out of the way and out the door, I lost hold of my very cute 16-month-old baby. She ran over to touch a handheld scanner and a Costco employee said very rudely and without a smile: “Whose baby is that?” I stood there and looked her right in the eye and said: “Mine” And I wasn’t rude, but I had like a nice, I-dare-you-to-be-a-mother-hater look…but nice…really.

And then she said something like: “She can’t be there.” And in my head I am saying “Duh, that’s why I came right along to fetch her even before you asked the original question…” but instead I said: “I’m getting her,” and only then did I unlock our gaze, reach down and grab my cute baby who wasn’t doing a thing wrong.

Cut to the parking lot. I walked the grocery cart up to the back of my bright red SVU (please don’t hate me), and I opened the back and turned on the car. I came back and of course the baby had just stood up in the cart (I forgot that I had undone her seatbelt), and I snatched her up and locked her in the car seat.

I then came back to the back of my car and a man comes over and says: “A car was backing up out of it’s spot, and almost hit your cart with your daughter in it.” At first I thought maybe he was going to finish that statement with: “And I got his license plate number, I can’t believe he could be so careless as to come so close to hitting your daughter.” But then he was sort of being like the Costco employee and I just said in my now-you-are-NOT-gonna-be-a-mother-hater deadpan: “What are you trying to say?” And he replied, “I’m just saying that your daughter almost got hit by a car,” in a you-are-careless-and-should-never-be-allowed-to-have-children-and-I’m-going-to-report-you-to-DCFS tone, and then he lit up his cigarette, unfolded his stroller, and put his baby in it.

I’d say the best mothering I did after all that was by not rolling down my window as I drove by and saying anything about the Surgeon General’s warning on cigarettes, and in particular the affect of second hand smoke on a child.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Simplicity


I have this lazy habit of replacing a photo in the frame, and leaving the previous photo in the frame too. Now I kind of like it, because whenever I go to change the photo, I get a little slideshow of times past. Yesterday I went to put in a very delicious photo of my bambina, and I got a treat of seeing my two daughters touching noses, my sister in her wedding dress (b and w), and this photo of the three of us.

It was taken in 2003, and I had just recovered from viral meningitis, and my daughter and I were doing a test photo shoot for a photographer in Central Park. We ended up with some really fun frames that I really cherish. This one though, she snapped as we were walking to a new location. I love my husband in it, he looks so hot. And my little daughter was just coming into her own. I feel like I look very well in this picture, as just a few weeks earlier I was still laying on the couch with vertigo 24-7. It is a nice memory and that time of our lives when it was just the three of us. It's amazing how adding another can complicate things considerably, and cause much exhaustion. We love her, but the baby has put a small wrench in the rhythm (even 16 months later).

In other news I want to give a shout out to my parent's celebrating a monumental anniversary yesterday, as well as a big Happy Birthday to dear OLD Dad today. Wish I could be there to give you hugs.

And in case you are bored today, I added just two new pics to my website, from a recent photo shoot for a book cover. Thanks Chloe for shopping the one. They are in the print section and I am wearing bold anthropologie dresses, and the photos have quite a bit of movement to them. Enjoy.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Oh Yeah....CHICA CHICAAAAH

Today I had an interesting callback for Wynn Hotels in Las Vegas. They are designing some giant 26-foot electronic billboard thing coming out of a fountain (or something like that), and it is going to feature faces lipsyncing to "Oh Yeah" by Yello (from Ferris Beuller's movie), or something like that. The original audition had us lipsyncing to the best of our abilities while not moving any part of our bodies but our faces. No, we could not even move our necks or heads.

Today was the callback. About 7 of us met at the Cheyenne Diner on 33rd and 9th Ave and got in a van to take a field trip to New Jersey. There they had this 6 foot tall, 3-dimensional head in a studio, and a chair that resembled one I have seen at the dentist. I sat on the chair with my head and neck against the head and neck holders, and they projected my face onto this giant face right next to me, and watched me lip sync the entire song. I was encouraged to be over the top and wildly expressive and crazy silly. I had to dig deep down for that.

Anyway, it was the weirdest audition I have had to date, and now I am really looking forward to seeing the finished product next time I am in Vegas. Ha ha. But seriously, if I do book it, I might just have to take a quick weekend trip out there to check it out.

Today I also opened a Coogan account for my daughter at the Actors Fund on 46th St. She had her first acting job a few months back and it is the law that 15% of a child's earnings have to go into this specific trust. I cannot believe I have a daughter, that she is an "actor" and that she has a special trust fund to put her money into. When did I lose control?

Monday, August 21, 2006

An Adventure with Parv


Today's adventure was almost not an adventure. My girls woke up at 5:15 AM this morning...a record. Usually the earliest is around 10 minutes to 6. Man were we all cranky about that. In an effort to save my voice, I even bared my teeth at my daughter today (as opposed to yelling)....it felt very dog-like.

My instinct was to keep my cranky girls quarentined (so that it wouldn't spread), so that they were not being rewarded for their bad/cranky behavior, but alas they thrive on being out, so to save the entire posse, we went out.

We started our day at our favorite playground with our favorite playground friends. Then after a quick siesta, we headed into Manhattan to meet up with a friend of mine visiting from LA. He is shooting an indie film here nights. His calltimes are 10 pm all week-ouch. It was great to catch up with him. He thought I looked skinny, but after 3 hours with the girls I think he understood that being a mommy IS my workout...

We also bumped in to a gal that I did my last two shows with, Marcy Harriell. I actually covered her in two different shows, which is pretty funny because we look nothing alike. It was fun to catch up with her, if only for a few blocks. My friend Parvesh is doing really well in LA, it is so nice to see him succeed at what he loves doing. I also got a sneak peek at his Skittles commercial which is so funny.

I have a callback for an industrial for Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas. It's a fun one, more later on that.

Husband


I have a statcounter on my blog so that I can see if anyone is reading it. And one of the features of the stat counter is a "CAME FROM" section. It will show if anyone found the blog through a google search. The typical searches are: Kristy Glass, Glass Posse, Runway Moms Kristy Glass, Expecting Models, Kristy Glass Hair; More rare: Nuvaring timer replacement and babiesrus modeling nj auditions.

One day, there was a search that said: "glass husband."
I told my husband about it, and he obviously thought it was funny enough to share with his colleagues at work. They admitted that they were the ones who had google searched "glass husband", and the following is what happened:

One of his colleagues who follows my career had seen the Just for Fun Husband Chronicles Collage at the bottom of the links page on my website. In an effort to locate it again, he google searched: glass husband. During a short break from work one day, he called a few other guys over to his computer screen (all of who know, (if not work directly FOR) my husband). He posed this question: See this lady here? Which man do you think is her real husband? No one guessed the real husband. And even funnier, no one recognized my husband in any of the photos, even though he is very clearly there. And those who had met me, did not recognize me either.

I found this to be funny, and thought I would share.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

That Look in their Eye


In the past year or two, 12 or so of my mommy friends have moved away from Astoria to various parts of the country, mostly west of the Mississippi River. I have sat here at my vantage point here in the city and watched these women reach the end of the road (or the end of their rope) with "city-life". Two of them gave up when they found they were expecting twins. They get this look in their eye. Sometimes it is before they announce that they are moving, other times it's after. When I see it before the announcement, I get nervous, I think: Uh-oh, I'm about to lose another one.

Then there are the moms that move in. At first they have a similar (but different) look that says: "Wow. So. This is my life now." Or they have this look: "Wow. A new adventure. I am so excited to try this out." And then I watch the evolution of their New York Experience. Elation can turn into frustration can turn into depression can turn into joy. Everyone's path is different, but when it is coming to an end, the bad stuff about New York becomes really bad for them.

My friend can tell you the exact amount of days she has until she moves away from Astoria. She has about 10 months to go, and she is done, over it, finished. Her bike got stolen recently and that was the last straw. Another of my friends is expecting her second, and in the heat without a car and toting a two-year-old is over it. Another of my friends has been challenged by no hot water for a week. I hope she is not over it, because she's gonna be here for a while.

I have BAD days in NYC. For sure. (locked out of apartment, torrential downpours, pigeon poop, penis flashers, crazy turban woman grab my hair, obscenities, the list goes on) But I never want to move away. I never get that look in my eye. And I think what I have learned from my friends is that if I ever DO get that look, that I need to take action as soon as possible and start anew somewhere else. I just can't imagine when I would get that look and where that might be.

So for now I will just take my friends as they come and go, and try to sap out all I can from them while they are in my life, in case they get "that look", and leave me.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Before and After





Here is the second Wet Ones ad, found it today in Cookie Mag. There I am...but just barely.

And check out the magic my friend chloe worked on this seal photo...I so totally love it now.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

New York Aquarium: Rated R









It's very possible that my friend and I were just in a perverted mood (or maybe just she was, because she seemed to find all the signs, oh yeah that's just being literate), but our trip to the aquarium was sort of rated R.

Thanks to the giant walrus, my daughter knows all about the difference between the male and female anatomy. And I know a little more information then I needed on the slippery dick fish. Check out these signs that were posted at the aquarium. Seriously?

I thought this photo of a jellyfish turned out pretty cool. I love how my darling baby made friends with the seal. The walrus tank across the room was getting a lot of attention and so I just planted her at that corner, and after a while the seal started coming over to her and that prompted more kids to gather. If only I had photoshop, I could delete that little boy standing in between the baby and her seal friend. I think she might be a SEAL WHISPERER.

In one shot you'll see I tried to capture the tiniest star fish I have ever seen, but my focus was a little soft. Oh well, you can still see how small it is compared to a four-year-old's hand. It was our first time to the New York Aquarium, and our first time to Coney Island. We had to stop for a corn dog at Nathan's, it was the greasiest I have ever had, but they had great lemonade. It was a fun day out enjoying New York together, even if we did get a little TMI for our own good.

Walmart Baby and You



It's here. After many trips to the local Walmart (45 minutes away on the GCP), and no success at finding this magazine, I ended up getting a copy mailed to me. That was a nice (and rare) gesture on the part of American Baby. It isn't often you get your tears sent to you, usually it's a lot of paging through magazines at Universal News.

Anyway, it turned out sweet, and is a nice memory of the long lost baby that I used to have...this is her at 11 months, and a very wiggly 11 months at that. I was sore after this shoot from trying to hold her tight to me. You can see her hand is trying to pry herself loose. I decided we look alike in this photo, but more when I am looking at it upside down then right side up, something about the eye shape.

Yesterday I finally finished the Nuvaring campaign. It was a day of still photography for the point-of-purchase and brochure stuff. It will all be launched in a matter of weeks, so it will be exciting to see it get off the ground. I am told the commercial will be airing on all channels and all time slots, and the client named Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy and LOST as 3 shows that will air the commercial...so that's exciting. When the Playtex Beyond commercial ran, the most exciting airing was during My Name is Earl!
That's the news from here...now go take a picture of your baby and you.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

M-E-L-T-D-O-W-N

2 days in a row I have had a meltdown. 2 days...in a row. Justin Roberts sang it best today on XM Kids radio: "I know that this might sound outrageous, but a meltdown is contageous..."

"She’s havin a meltdown
Didn’t know that she felt down
M, m, m, m, m, meltdown
Yes she’s havin' a meltdown"

And SHE refers to the entire posse. If it's not one than it's the other or the other. Nothing specific is getting me down, just life in general, which means that I have consumed way too many brownies, snickers bars, and for some strange reason, citrus-fruit-themed drinks. Can I get a frozen strawberry lemonade from cosi please?

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Yes, this is New York...City


Remember that gorgeous and beautiful day the other day? I found this gorgeous and beautiful butterfly to go with it, right on the southeast corner of central park. Hello beautiful monarch.

Totally random thought: Just had a craving for that LOST whooshing theme and then the drum beat at the end of each episode.

16 months ago today, I pushed a baby out...glad that's over.

Monday, August 14, 2006

I SPY





Yes I am in all of these ads. Okay here is the story. I did this Wetones ad a few months ago. It was a direct booking which means that I didn't have to go to a casting/go-see for the job. A photographer that I have worked with several times before knew I was good with kids, so she booked me. Great. It was a decent paying job, I'll take it. After the shoot, I got a call from my agent saying the photo that they chose for the ad turned out to be more recognizable than they originally intended, so they were going to double my pay. I'll take that too.

Now that I see the ad, I am laughing because this is less recognizable than the Huggies ad that I did, and they were on a similar pay scale (I mean, it doesn't even show my dead give away famous hair). Cut to, I am flipping through Parenting Magazine today and I say: Wow, that lady looks a lot like me, oh, it IS me. There I was in a Playskool ad (with baby Fiona), which I most definitely remember shooting, but was most definitely not aware was going to be an ad. So, I am ok with that, but I would say this is MOST recognizable and I was paid less than 1/3 of what I was paid for the "recognizable" Wetones ad. I have put in a call to my agent about that one....

Another interesting occurrence today, other then discovering myself by accident in Parenting Magazine, happened of course on the subway. I was in a car with 4 men with large suitcases, and realized as the doors were opening to my stop that we were ALL getting off. My instinct was to be rude and push in front of them to be sure we were out in time...but I didn't. I pushed the stroller out onto the platform and then the door closed on my arm with my body and my older child's body inside the train. A woman came running, (the suitcase guys were still clueless) and I just stood there assuming (hoping) one of the conductors would see a woman's arm attached to a stroller hanging out of the car....one onethousand, two onethousand, and the cars opened. My daughter said: "MOM, that was REALLY bad." I couldn't have agreed more.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Fleeting



The time is passing so quickly already. Before I know it, she will turn in her stick for a bouquet of flowers and leave me. I will try to remember this image when she wipes mashed potatoes on the wall, poops in the tub, dunks her favorite stuffed elephant in the toilet AGAIN, rips up my checkbook, draws on the coffee table, eats dirt, and brings me joy with every second.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Friday, August 11, 2006

Good New York Day

Today at playgroup I was trying to be on vocal rest. My friend Katie had my back and was doing some explaining for me to the mom and dad there that were unaware. I was grateful. When the mom found out she said: "Whoa....that must be hard for you, you talk A LOT." I don't know this mom that well, so it was funny to hear blunt honesty from her, and in her uber adorable Peruvian accent, it was quite hilarious. I learned that word uber from my friend chloe...am I using it correctly?

Nevertheless, she's right, I am a talker. I was talking to someone the other day (I don't remember who), and I was explaining that the good New York days are so good, and the bad New York days are SO bad. I think the question from my friend was, what make the good New York days good? Well, today is a super amazingly stunningly gorgeous New York Day. It is 80 degrees, with a slight breeze, blue skies and sunshine. Everyone is out and in a good mood because of the weather. It's summer. There are saxaphonists, Brit punk band guys, joggers, bike-riders, tourists, the list goes on, walking about, enjoying all the stimulation that comes with being in a city. It's inspiring and energizing and breathing life back into our tired bodies.

The city is saying: don't do laundry today, come out and play. Come see the past, present and future on a single city block. Come hear the music, be the music, dance to the music of my streets. Eat a Mr. Softee cone. Breathe the Central Park air. Bless me with your art, your mind and your talents. Be a part of it...

And so I am going to try to squeeze the laundry in, and then I am going to take my kids by the hand and do just that. We are going to be a part of New York City today, as we are everyday, but with broader smiles, and deeper breaths, and a prayer of gratitude on our hearts for this abundance at our fingertips.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

V Talk


Today was a long day of video taping for the Nuvaring Website. It is going to be very cool, very interactive. If you don't like me, don't go there. It parallels the commercial, and is full of great information that you will find very useful if you are interested in learning more about Nuvaring.

There was SO much copy today. Lucky for me, they had a teleprompter, so I didn't have to think as much. I did really well with all the content until I started describing the difference between the outer vagina and the upper vagina. I lost it. I unexpectedly started laughing so hard that I fell to the ground and did not recover for a few minutes. I even shed a few tears. I think I could feel the energy of the entire crew as they were in awe that I had kept a straight face for THAT long. It was good to get the humor out in the open and over with so that I could move on and get the job done. I never thought that when I wanted to be an actor I would be discussing in detail, the female, well you know.

When I was trying to compose myself, I started a mantra that I often use when I have to perform and do NOT want to be in touch with my emotions (eg. funerals). At the last funeral I sang for, I said ketchup, mustard, hotdogs over and over. I know this sounds morbidly weird, but if I think about anything else I will lose it and be unable to sing. Anyway, today I said: ketchup, mustard, hotdogs (but hotdogs didn't sound right given the subject matter, so I changed it to), onion rings...Doh! Even worse. Now I had a visual of an onion ring instead of the nuvaring. I had to take a break....after a quick phone call to my daughter, I was able to finish the set, straight-faced.

Since my last commercial was for Playtex Tampons, I guess I have sort of found my niche? After two kids and 8 years of marriage, I guess you could say I am comfortable with V Talk...whatever pays the bills. My Dad will be so proud.

Mom, when I grow up, I want to be a Seal Feeder









The Queens Zoo was our Wednesday Adventure. It was gorgeous weather (finally), and our first time there. The Puma stalked my big girl when she got too close to the window, the alligator lay unphased by any spectator, the ducks were so excited about their afternoon snack, and my daughter was so impressed with the sea lion feeding, she declared a new profession for herself.

I learned that my little one is quite daring, because among other moments of moxie, she laughed when the toulouse bit her finger. I had such a great time watching their discoveries. It was a beautiful day.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Vocal Rest



Almost 10 years ago I got laringitis for the first time ever. It was during my first paid singing job for the Disney Company. I had rehearsed for 3 weeks, and we were heading towards performance week, which in this case was 1 week of performances-26 to be exact. It was for the premiere of the film Hercules. We were in a live pre-show of the film...similar to some of the shows you see at the Resort. We were performing in the Chicago Theatre. We performed 3 or 4 times a day right before the movie, kind of like a movie theatre schedule. 3 days into our 1 week of performances, my voice was completely gone. There was little lead up, just one morning, goodbye voice.

I panicked. I was barely 18 and still living at home, so my mother and I started calling every otolaryngologist we could find to schedule an appointment. Finally we found one that could see me before my first show on day 4. He took a look, listened to my dilemma and gave me some cortisone to get through the next 3 days with a promise to follow-up with an appointment. I promised. The cortisone worked like a dream (my fellow castmates had let me in on that secret...so I knew how to approach the doctor), and I was able to finish the performance week. There were no understudies, so it is a good thing this worked out.

After the show closed I went to see an amazing specialist in Chicago, Dr. Bastian. He took some photos of my vocal chords and found a swelling on either side that was touching together and thus hardening the swelling into a nodule. He prescribed me with vocal rest, as these swellings were from abuse and overuse. That meant no talking. I think this lasted at least a week. I got very good at writing very fast...and creating my own signs. After a time, the swelling had no significant change and he told me he could operate and remove the nodule or I could adapt. I chose to adapt.

After that I finished a college music program, and sang several demanding roles in DC-area regional theatres. This was 8 shows a week, working full time during the day, and teaching voice on the weekends. I took good care of my voice, drank a lot of water, and never lost my voice.

That brings us to now. I do not have laringitis like that time in Chicago, but ever since this spring (and the most horrible allergy season to date), I have felt that my chords are swollen. I have not had this confirmed, but this past week, there is no sound on certain notes and pitches. I am getting nervous about this, so I put myself on vocal rest. My husband explained to my daughter that I was like Ariel and had no voice. She has been really patient with me, lip-reading, and trying to decipher what I am saying. She also sometimes catches herself doing it back to me. I quickly motion to my ear and mouth: I can hear you, you can talk out loud. It's so sweet.

Being on vocal rest takes a lot of discipline. I went to the zoo with my kids and my friend today, and I only broke a few times, once when I couldn't find my baby....but my friend was so patient with me too. I have to shoot the rest of the Nuvaring stuff tomorrow and it is SO much copy, so I will have to talk, but before and after and on Friday I am still going to rest. I just hope that I can get the recording that I need to, done on Saturday. It is coming to an end, and I am starting to get nervous about my voice holding up. I also, don't want to go to the doctor because A. it is expensive and B. I do not want an operation and C. I am scared to see how big the nodule has gotten.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Don't Hog

Today was difficult for the whole posse. It was back in the saddle again, and we had a few adventures to complete this morning. Nobody wanted to, we all wanted to stay in bed, play with my little ponies or climb as high as we could on the toilet seat, desk or coffee table. Guess which posse member went with which desire...

We eventually made it out the door and we experienced a beautiful and gorgeous breeze that has been absent for TOO LONG. We trekked all the way to Canal Street for the baby's Parenting Magazine Dec. Cover go-see (they ended up photographing all of us...which I knew might happen, so we tried to be cute), and then took a little walk through Soho to the Parent & Child Cover go-see for the big girl and me.

Parent & Child is a publication of Scholastic, so their office buildings have a really great Scholastic bookstore on the ground floor. We took a short ride in a Clifford riding thingy, and then headed into the store. There was an employee sitting towards the center reading a few books for story time. I always love it when I happen upon things like this. I plopped the baby down to see if she might engage, but of course she wouldn't, so the three of us played at the train-station table nearby and listened to the story. Here's where it gets good.

First the set up: A woman with a double stroller (who seemed very friendly) was seated about 4 feet away from the reader, and there was a little boy on the floor on either side of the stroller. A woman came in (late) and with a loud voice and a rude tone commanded the woman with the stroller to move aside so that her daughter could sit down. I gave her a look that said: "Are you kidding me?" I went back to my own kids, and then the fight began. I heard loud voices of a nanny, this mom, and the lady with the double stroller, and I heard things like this: She has two kids, she cannot take them out of the stroller, I was here first, You are blocking the way, My kids can't see, You are Hogging (yes they used the word hogging) the story time space. The man reading to the kids made one nice comment like: "Could you settle this so that the kids can hear the story?", but it continued.

I made one impulse move near the fueding rude mom and nanny to see if I could try to smooth it over, but I decided not to get involved because it was too childish. Then the manager came over and walked right up to the three adults fighting and said something like this: "You are worse then the children. Story time is over." Sweet. I had a smile on my face because it really was one of the most interesting things I had ever seen. I know I make parenting mistakes, but to fight in front of your child like that and essentially get kicked out of the store is a low in parenting.

The best part is that the fighting continued after it was broken up by the manager. I heard: I'm her mother; well I'm a grandma; you are being so rude; etc. I seriously thought it was going to turn physical at one point. My perspective: it was entirely the fault of the rude latecomer mom, and the sad thing is, she probably has no idea. Luckily my kids were unaware of the entire situation, and I wished I could have witnessed it in more detail, but I was trying to be a good mom and pay my kids a little attention. And I was watching them to see if they became aware of what was going on, if they had, I would have moved to a different section of the store of left completely. It certainly got exciting for a minute there.

Little Leggings


Some of my friends have made a commitment to stop shopping and only refashion what they already have or own. This blog shows some of the projects that these crazies are working on. I love it.

I decided to try my hand at this refashioning stuff. They don't make leggings for babies, so I had to make some. I went to H & M, bought some purple opaque tights in size 2T, put them on my baby and cut off the feet. So, does that count?

And yes, she is standing on a rather tall garbage can with a ball point pen in her mouth...please don't report me to DCFS.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Root Canal Shmoot Canal

Every time I go to the dentist here in NYC, the dentist makes a little fun of me because my chart is full of records: x-rays, photos and notes gallore. It is because I have had a lot of dental work done, and because my dentist up to this point in my life was my Dad, and he kept good track of my dental health

I am totally fine with being made fun of. And today I was even MORE fine with it, because as I lay in the dental chair awaiting my root canal fate, the endodontist decided to take a little poke around at my chart. He discovered a nice panoramic x-ray of my whole mouth from 1996 and 2002. He compared the 2006 x-rays of the root(s) in question to the 1996 x-rays, and discovered that the present blackish spot that was indicating a dead tooth, had been there for at least 10 years, and that a root canal was not necessarily necessary at this point in time.

Yeah. I will take that opinion and run to Lexington and 59th Street thank YOU. So, I was let off the hook, and I had a little time to go shopping. I have a new strategy. Since I am always told to be nice casual, casual, young mom or new york hip edgy cool but ________, I have decided to be very deliberate in trying to update my wardrobe each season. I bought the September LUCKY magazine and tore out a few looks that I want to achieve. I cut them out and stapled them together and now I will carry this little lookbook around in my purse, so that I can refer to it, and stay on task when shopping. Staying on task is hard. I got two pieces today, and I am hoping they fit into my plan. Time (and more shopping) will tell.

In recording news, this morning I got 2 full tracks done, fixed one that was bothering me, and got started on the beast: O HOLY NIGHT. O HOLY......hard song.

Redemption

I got a nice little check in the mail on Saturday from Con Edison for $350.00. I am glad I went for it, and did not get discouraged by the ridiculous parameters they were putting around getting reimbursement for losses incurred. I have to say getting that check made me in a more forgiving mood. They even included a thank you note in both Spanish and English.

I am still really struggling with jetlag. No matter how much sleep I get, I feel exhausted. It is kind of irritating.

I must sallyforth however, because this is the crunch month for finishing the album. I have to finish all the vocals, start the mixing and send it to mastering. The excitement is building, and I MUST deliver.

I will be recording this morning and then jog on over to a root canal. Yup, my third one in my short life. I am kind of irritated at my teeth right now too....they are TOTALLY letting me down. At least it was not discovered because of pain, inflammation or an abscess. It was discovered through an x-ray...oh look, your tooth is dead. Yeah raw.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Shooting for Nuvaring





August 2, 2006

The past 2 days have been a whirlwind. After a slow start on Day 1, we shot that commercial like rapid fire. We covered so much and it went by very fast. I loved the director's technique-he wasted no time on anything. I was memorized, which I am sure helped everyone. At one point, he called me the "precision queen" and chalked it up to my "broadway" training. That was nice to hear...took about 5 hours to prove that. Everything was shot on a green screen. There were about 30 crew behind the scenes. It was intimidating when I first stepped onto the set, bt I got over it fairly quickly (had no choice I guess).

For lunch we had steak and garlic mashed potatoes. Yum.

The day before the shoot, Carrie drove me to Pasadena via some road that would allow me to see a few sights. The first stand-out was the Jim Henson Company. A giant Kermit the Frog was perched on a building. I was dissappointed that I hadn't had my camera ready. The second thing we saw was the HOLLYWOOD sign from pretty far away. So, think of my delight when on day 1 of shooting, the PA drove me into the parking lot of the Jim Henson Company, which is also the old Charlie Chaplin Studio. Bonus. This for me, made the trip to CA all the sweeter because it was a very unique place to shoot. I also learned that there are a lot of recording studios there and Barry Manilow and Paul McCartney had both been spotted by my producer in the past. No such sightings for me though.

After being wrapped at 6 PM, I went home, got a quick bight to eat at the Newsroom and then soaked in a bubble bath...something I RARELY do (probably because I do not have a tub in my apt). I then slept very soundly until my 6:15 wake up call.

Day 2 was a quick start and a quick day. I did a few scenes in the morning, then waited around and read my book for a few hours until I was called back to do a few alternate lines that the legal department had suggested by way of avoiding some possible legal issues. I was wrapped around 3 PM.

I spent the afternoon at The Grove. The most exciting parts about this outing, depending on who you are talking to are the following: The complimentary car from the hotel took me there and picked me up, and that car was a Rolls Royce Phantom. I saw a few more celebs, 7th Heaven stars, Beverley Mitchell and George Stults. But a lot of people saw them because they were on a stage presenting Cheyenne Kimball for the kick off concert series of Summer at the Grove. Neither of these were as exciting (to me) as my haagen daaz ice cream that I ate while waiting for a ride back to the hotel.

I repeated the bath ritual and finished my book: Angels & Demons, which is better than DaVinci Code. I then fell asleep in the feathers of the Four Seasons and braced myself for the return of my very busy, non-Four Seasons life.