Monday, October 20, 2014

The Joy of Theatre

Hey kids!  Look!  I'm posting on a day other than Saturday!

I just wanted to write a short post about the joy in my life right now.  Life can get me down sometimes.  The stress of some current situations in my life has giving me some stomach problems (I really didn't know I was letting it get to me so much) and I'm sure you know that if you're emotionally run down and then you get physically run down, you (meaning me) run the risk of getting a little depressed and overwhelmed.

That being said, I am extremely fortunate that God has given me the joy of theatre in a particularly hard time in my life.  I forgot how much the joy of watching literature come to life onstage transforms my moods.  I can go from having a very melancholy attitude towards the whole state of my life, to leaving a rehearsal feeling content and at peace.

I started working with a newer theatre company in our area this year.  They focus on more literary drama, rather than the musicals that seem to pervade the community theatre scene. As much fun as musicals can be, I have found that my heart belongs to the form of theatre this company performs.  I have felt so blessed to be able to perform with them, whether it be only having 1 line, or having a integral role in the plot.

I currently have a very small role in an original piece about Edgar Allan Poe (performed on Halloween, of course), and even though the show is really creepy, as I sat watching the first run-through tonight after my one scene was over, I couldn't help feeling the swell of happiness in my heart.  I have always loved being surrounded by talented, creative people, even though I feel incredibly inferior.  It just makes me feel so grateful for this gift God has placed in my life.  I'm happy with any part they are willing to give me, just to be surrounded by people who love theatre and literature as much (or more) than I do.  I have met some of the sweetest people doing community theatre over the last two years, and it has made my life so much richer.

I still feel a little out of place at our rehearsals.  If you know me in real life, you might find this hard to believe, but I'm relatively quiet and reserved in a setting like this, and I feel a little like I haven't found my place yet, but I'll get there.  For now, I'm content to just watch the process and enjoy the talent that has been placed in my life.  I feel like a goofball sometimes, because while the other actors are playing with their phones or chatting in a corner while a scene is being rehearsed, my eyes are glued to the action, assessing everything the actors are doing and just loving every minute of watching the characters unfold.

Yeah, I know, I'm a little odd... but then again, I'm a theatre geek at heart, and we're all a little odd.

After Halloween comes Christmas in my theatrical world!  I get to be in A Christmas Carol and I am super pumped!  I'll be singing Christmas carols starting November 3, people, so watch out!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Organization Inspiration

Last week, I confessed my obsession with scrapbooking and organizational YouTube videos.  I know, I'm a sad, pathetic individual, but they make me happy, so I don't care.  For years when YouTube was first out, I never got into it.  I'm not into watching clips of old TV shows, or people doing stupid stuff, or talking dog videos.  Yeah, those things are funny, but I'd rather learn something when I'm watching any kind of TV or videos.

I'm not going to share my scrapbooking inspiration today, but rather my organization inspiration.  I really only have two women whose videos I love to watch.  I think their personalities are equally as appealing as their tricks and tips to organization.  They are both fun to watch and just seem like ladies I would like to be friends with.

You Tube: Dispatches from the Frathouse
The first woman whose video series I discovered was Carie Harling.  She is the mother of 7 boys.  Yes, you read that right, 7 boys!!  I can't even...  I don't really know her whole back story at this point (apparently she is writing a book) but her personality is so adorable and her hair changes every time I watch a video!  I like her a lot, and I can see why she is a person who needs a million paper planners.  I can't imagine keeping up with 7 children, let alone all boys who play sports, are learning to drive, have jobs, girlfriends, etc.  Anyway, Carie's videos are pretty much all about paper planning.  Her life is a far cry from mine and I can't even fathom all the planning she does in a day, but she does give good advice for being more efficient in any stage you are in.

YouTube: Organized Like Jen
Jen is probably my favorite of all the organization "gurus" I've seen on the interwebs.  She does do paper planner videos, but she is more about overall organization in life.  I get tons of practical tips from someone who is more like me.  She's married and works for herself and is a housewife, so while she does need to be organized and keep a planner or two, it's not quite as involved as Carie, who has to run the show for 9 people.  That being said, I can identify with Jen just a little bit more.  She gets anxious in spaces that are cluttered and overwhelming.  She may not work outside the home or have kids to schedule into her day, but she is busy regardless, and needs to be just as organized as the next person.

I really advise you to take a look at these two ladies' blogs and YouTube videos if you're looking for ways to schedule more efficiently or just organize your house and other personal spaces (Jen will even teach you how to pack more efficiently for trips!  I like that!)  They are both super cute and real. I want to be their friend.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Destroying Disorder

I’ve heard it said that it takes 21 days to form a habit.  I’m not sure if you can pin it to that exact number of days, but I certainly think there is some truth to it.  Since the end of August, I have been trying to create a habit of organization in my home and in my own mind.  Slowly but surely, I think it is working. 

Ever since I bought my house and really started living in it, I have felt increasingly disorganized.  Throw in the hectic theatre schedule that was added a couple of years ago, and I had a recipe for disaster.  I felt like I was never home for more than 20 mins. at a time other than the time I was sleeping.  When I’d get home, I’d have no desire to clean or organize or prepare for the next day.  My whole life seemingly has turned into a juggling act… and I can’t juggle.

I also added a new hobby to my list recently, scrapbooking.  While that is something that I can do at home, it certainly is not a minimalist hobby.  It requires a lot of stuff… and stuff equals clutter if I’m not organized and on top of my game.

I was starting to feel a little overwhelmed with the state of my house and consequently, my brain.  I don’t want to give up my fun hobbies.  Theatre keeps me social, and scrapbooking keeps me feeling artsy (or at least crafty… is there a difference?). 

So what’s a girl to do who grew up with a super organized/clean mother and now feels like she lives in a hoarder’s house (even though anyone else who comes into it would say the exact opposite)?

She comes up with a plan to overhaul life!

Over the next few weeks (hopefully with at least some consistency), I’m going to be posting about what I’ve been doing to organize my life, from my schedule, to my home, to this blog.  I’ve been getting tons of ideas from various places around the internet, and I’m ready to put them into action.  With any luck, I can update you periodically about how my new systems are working out for me, and hopefully if you're looking for ways to get more organized, it'll help you out, too.

First up: My inspiration.  Stay tuned.

Question:  What are your tips for staying organized?  Do you have a system?  Are you just a naturally organized person that just never loses things or forgets an appointment?  If you are, I'm sorry to say that I resent you, just a little. :-)

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Goals are a Good Thing

When I decided to re-enter the blogging world, I knew I had to set some ground-rules for myself.  I don’t want to get into a situation where I am blogging anything and everything just to fill up the "pages".  I intend to make this blog more about quality than quantity in the future.  Therefore, I am going to set up some goals.  I'm a girl who works well with having goals (which I will talk about more in future posts).  

So without further ado (it’s “ado,” by the way, not “adieu”) here are my goals for the NEW Sunshine on Rainey Days:

     Keep things light - nobody likes a whiner
     Include pictures in as many posts as possible
   Post at least once a week
 Starting 2015, begin participating in a weekly photo challenge again

I might end up adding to this list, but these are the core things I want to follow from now on.  A posting schedule is my main goal.  I need to avoid getting overwhelmed... after all, blogging is supposed to be fun, not work.  To you seasoned bloggers, that is probably a no-brainer for you, but after 4 years of blogging, I think I’m just figuring that out now. 

Speaking of seasoned bloggers, do you have any tips, tricks or pointers that you are willing to provide to help my blogging be more enjoyable in the future?  

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Fall Festival Fun

I have been having a lot of fall fun this September (In fact, as you read this, I'm probably at another one).  One of the best things about fall is all the festivals.  My town had theirs last weekend, and it was quite an event.

The first thing we did was watch a really fun band called Perfect Storm in the "park" in our town (which is really more of a town square area).  The drummer was the son of my parents' neighbors (did you follow that?).  He was really good!  His sons also did guest appearances for a couple of the songs, one on drums and one on the bass, also really great!  I'm always impressed by drummers.

One of the things I always need to get at fairs is a corn dog.  It's my go-to fair meal.  This one looks fantastic... but, alas, it was disappointing.  I hate when I bite into a seemingly piping hot corn dog only to find a fresh-out-of-the-fridge hot dog in the middle.  What?  Why can't they figure out how to warm the hot dog and the crust simultaneously?  Corn dog fail... sigh. 

No fair is complete without a car show.  I have to admit, I have no interest in cars whatsoever.  Yes, the classic cars are cool, but I can breeze through a show pretty quickly because I don't know, nor care anything for the inner workings of the car.  However, this one caught my eye because it was for sale!  I immediately thought of a coworker who collects classic cars.  I took this picture and texted him.  I'll be interested to hear if he came to look at it.

The last, but certainly not the least of the things I did was visit the booth of the theatre company I've been working with recently.  They are doing a version of A Christmas Carol this winter and were promoting it by having a photo op session with Ebeneezer Scrooge.  This guy is a really great guy in "real life" so I was more than thrilled to grab a photo.  How awesome is this booth, by the way?  It's definitely eye-catching amid all the normal tent set-ups.

Fall festivals are a great way to start off the season.  The only thing better is when the fall festival happens during a nearly 80 degree day with a nice breeze and I can still wear shorts and a tank top!

I love fall!

Linking with Tamar

Saturday, September 20, 2014

A New Beginning

Have you ever had a time in your life when you just felt everything pressing down on you like an enormous weight of burden, and you just needed to take a step back?  A few months ago, I had that feeling.  I felt overwhelmed by my life.  I was overwhelmed by everything that I had to do and everything I wanted to do, and everything people expected me to do... to the point that even the things I wanted to do felt burdensome.  I couldn't handle it.  I guess I was depressed, although I hate to say things like that because it makes people nervous.  I still had plenty of happy times, but I just felt lost.

It was around that time that I decided to stop blogging.  I've had blogs off and on since college, and I end up either getting bored of them, putting something up that I shouldn't and then feeling guilty, or like this time... just getting overwhelmed by the burden of feeling like I HAD to post something and feeling bad if no one read what I wrote.  So... I put the blog on private and let it go.

Then, on top of that, I took another Facebook break.  This is actually the first one I stuck to without any problem.  Over the month long break, I got on Facebook literally twice, and it was just to check a photo someone tagged me in, and once to check on something that was most easily found through that site.  Other than that, I've had no temptation to get on.  I just needed to recharge and get away from social media.

Throughout the last few months, I've gotten a lot of perspective.  I've tidied up my life, found ways to organize what was previously disorganized, found the joy in the things that I wanted to do again... and at some point during the end of my Facebook break, found the desire to blog again.

As you can see, I've deleted all the previous blog posts.  4 years of blog posts, gone?  No, not exactly.  I found a program that turned my blog into a PDF file that I could print out... if I wanted.  I would never print out 844 pages, but I feel better about starting anew with a backed up version somewhere for posterity sake.

Over the next few weeks, I'm going to show you snippets of what I've been up to and where I'd like my new blog to go.  I'm starting off slow... one post a week at most.  I've got plans to keep the blog fun.  I don't want it to become a burden again, but I feel like writing is part of my creative outlet, along with photography, theatre and other new-found crafts... so I think that's what I'll be sharing on here.  Just snippets of the new things I'm learning in life as a single, 30-something year old woman just trying to find balance in life.

I hope you'll join me!