Tuesday, November 12, 2013

A Month Gone By--and Well-Spent!

Oh my goodness! Has it really been over a month since I last posted here?

Life has been busy! I see the Consecration Weekend was coming up as I ended my last post...then the next weekend was the wedding of a dear family friend. These blessed events both required overnight stays down in the Wheaton area, our old stomping grounds, and gave us the opportunity to catch up with friends old and new. What joyous occasions!

And I've been oh-so-disciplined about school this fall. It probably helps that we have Classical Conversations on Mondays, which gets our week started right. It's been hard for me as a tutor to get my lessons planned for a Monday morning, especially with our busy weekends--and I've been up late too many Sunday nights!--but I have to admit this schedule is working well for us. Chicklet11 and B8 love it, and they are already asking me if they can do school this way next year, and the year after that....

After our disciplined morning+ of reading and learning together, my attention turns to other chores in the house and to the idea that we may be listing this place on the market in a few more months. In my spare moments, instead of blogging, I've been chipping away at the job of de-cluttering and purging our home of the outgrown, the unused, the unneeded and the extraneous--one small shelf, counter or drawer at a time. I have done enough to get some accomplishment endorphins flowing...but if I pull back and think about what I haven't touched, I start sweating. It's a big job.

We also had a week of dress/tech rehearsals for Hercules, and then two weekends plus two school days of performances. A lot of time, but oh my, what fun and what joy! It was so rewarding to see all our rehearsal efforts come together in a really fabulous show. I know I'm a biased source, but that seemed to be the objective opinion of our audiences too. I'll put up some pictures soon.

I was so proud of our whole cast and crew, and I had such a great experience as a director.  It was a privilege to be part of a great directing team, and I learned so much! But I also felt more confident, this second time around, that I had a lot to offer too, and I really enjoyed coaching these young performers to shine. It's a great feeling to be using my teaching and leadership gifts in such a creative way.

My final excuse for not blogging lately is that we've been in rehearsals already for another play! B8, Chicklet and I had the opportunity to audition for a community theater's production of The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, and we all got nice little supporting parts. B8 is Claude, one of the Herdmans. They are the terrible family of six kids who show up at church and want to be part of the Christmas pageant. (If you know our boisterous B8, you can imagine how he is enjoying this role.)  Chicklet is Maxine, the church girl who is the narrator of the pageant, so most of her lines are straight from Luke's account of the Christmas story. I am Mrs. McCarthy, one of the church ladies, who has a couple little scenes with Mother, the pageant's director. In one of them, I get to yell that I called the fire department because actually, it was a LOT of smoke; and no, I didn't know it was cigar smoke--I don't expect to find cigar smoke in the ladies' room of the church!

The performances are the two weekends before Christmas, and I really dithered about whether we should even audition and be committed at such a busy time of the year. But in so many ways it was perfect timing--Classical Conversations will be off the whole month of December, so I won't have lessons to plan and we'll have no school deadlines that month; plus we're on a break after Hercules, and rehearsals for our next show, The Wizard of Oz, don't begin until January. It's a rare opportunity for all three of us to do a play together, and I had to ask myself what the kids would remember more:  another busy December, or the year we all were in The Best Christmas Pageant Ever together. The big kids won't miss us. Their December schedules are already full--B14 with madrigals, B18 with college classes and work, and Blondechick has rehearsals for a Christmas candlelight concert with her School of Worship. Even B22 is getting extra hours at work, and Papa Rooster has plenty to do with his full-time business job, his pastoring gig, and photography for all these performances.

Ok--I promise it won't be a month before I post again!

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