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Closing out the best summer of my life . . .

. . . no exaggeration.

If we stretch the calendar definition of summer just a bit so that it starts on, like, May 21st =) mine included a dream proposal, wedding planning, future planning, the arrival of my unbelievably smart and cute godson, a diverse batch of gigs in which I was paid to sing and/or act and/or dance, my most recent short film debuting to “rapturous applause” in an Australian film festival, being chosen for the Reelworld Festival’s E20, seeing Hamilton as the highlight of a great weekend in Chicago, a wonderful family reunion on a beautiful secluded lake in eastern Ontario, a pretty great Caribana week, and some super-significant milestones for friends and family members.

So this next part will sound funny: I’m really hoping to slow down and not do as much over the fall and winter. Partially because the future planning and wedding planning is going to ramp up, and partially because it’s beginning to feel as though the more there is to celebrate, the harder it is to celebrate each thing adequately. If you have a month where one big-deal awesome thing happens, you can kind of bask in that thing for the entire month. And as deeply grateful as I am to have so much to celebrate in such a short amount of time, I want to make sure I don’t get to a point where I take any of these sorts of things for granted, you know? Plus, I have every reason to expect spring and summer 2020 to be even more full, and I’m not trying to be all run-down and sleep-deprived for that =D

My plan . . . as of right now, at least . . . is to spend a bit of time travelling and seeing family, and a lot of time doing things that it’s super-easy to put off (all the boring parts of adulting, like decluttering and having a garage sale and trying some new haircare stuff and expanding my cooking/baking repertoire and figuring out how to stay fit over the winter). This might mean my blogs and monthly newsletter updates are more boring for a few months, lol . . . sorry? . . . But I promise it’s temporary. And I suspect it’s necessary. I don’t think I’m anywhere near being tired of excitement yet, but I really want to make sure I’m at my best while living my best life.

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A Wonderful Week in the Life . . .

Let me start by quoting from the beginning of July’s post.

“A month ago, I was basking in the afterglow of The Silent Goodbye.” I’m still basking in it, a little bit. Such a great show and a great experience!

“A month from now, I’ll be reminiscing on Who You Callin Black Eh? and being grateful to have had great roles in live shows for back-to-back months.” Very accurate. We even won a Teen Choice Award for WYCBE! And yes, it’s been awhile since I had two back-to-back bookings . . . but read on . . .

“A month after that . . . well, let’s be honest, I’ll be excited for Caribana, but maybe there will be a new booking to celebrate then!” Again, accurate. And then there was a new booking to celebrate! That third booking started the whirlwind week that’s just now wrapping up for me, and I wanted to take a moment – and a breath – before plunging into a new workweek, so this is my chance to fill you in on everything about the Caribana Week.

The incomparable Octavia Spencer is portraying the legendary Madam C J Walker (an African American beauty and haircare entrepreneur who built her own fortune in the early 1900s) in a new Netflix series, and I was cast in it as a dancer in a juke joint. Loved being a part of this project! The costuming and wardrobe was out of this world in its authenticity and, well, fun =D Plus I got to meet and work with some fantastic and incredibly talented individuals. (I particularly loved my cute little button-up leather heels, although I do wish I’d figured out a way to stop my feet from hurting — this, as you’ll see, was a recurring theme for the week.) I’m not allowed to post any pictures from set, but stay tuned — the air date is this fall!

So that was my Monday: being on set in Hamilton. Tuesday (and from this point until the end of the post, you can keep an eye on my Instagram page for more pics and video) was my Caribana kickoff, first finally visiting Maracas in Kensington Market for some delicious roti and doubles (I’m going back there SO soon, lol), and then finally attending a Toronto edition of Tuesday on the Rocks and thoroughly enjoying every minute of it (I mean, it’s KES the Band, so how could I not??).

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I haven’t gone to Sweetness on the Water in a few years, and it was nice to spend a Caribana Wednesday night admiring the city’s skyline with soca blasting once again =) Unfortunately, this is the night my feet started really giving me trouble, with the parade itself still three sleeps away .  . .

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I had some hope that soaking them in a pool for awhile would help. Hello, Soca Or Die =D (and a chance to take photos with KES bassist Riad and Shal Marshall!)

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The pool definitely helped. Gumbo, however (one of the best dance parties you will ever go to), did not. Oops! Haha . . .

Up next: Friday Night Mas! I’d heard about this event last year and decided to give it a shot. I still think my section should have won (Old Town Jab forever, lol!) but I’m definitely glad to have been able to check out such a fun take on Grenada’s Monday Night Mas, close enough that I could walk home afterward ;-)

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Then, at long last, we woke up on Caribana Saturday morning and I prepared to play mas for my fifteenth year in a row. I jumped up with Saldenah for the first time, opting to match my fiancé for any pictures taken and be able to keep him close ;-) I have a lot to say about the parade itself, so I’ll probably do a separate post on that topic alone.

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And — sorry, tortured aching feet — the weekend wasn’t done yet!! Sunday ended up being a marathon of a day: a farewell breakfast for my friend and her partner as they left town (no pics taken), church (no pics taken), the closing performance of The Lion King’s 2019 Toronto run (didn’t get pics of all my family who attended), and a lovely family get-together to celebrate my uncle’s birthday (out of the few pics I took that I’m permitted to share, here’s me with a cousin who lives in Edmonton and who I am SO glad I got to see before she leaves again).

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And after lots of food and baby cuddles and a sleepy drive home, I let myself sleep in. My feet are grateful and my heart is full.

Now . . . after a breath or two on this holiday Monday . . . let’s see what else August has in store!

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Curtain Up!

A month ago, I was basking in the afterglow of The Silent Goodbye.

A month from now, I’ll be reminiscing on Who You Callin Black Eh? and being grateful to have had great roles in live shows for back-to-back months.

A month after that . . . well, let’s be honest, I’ll be excited for Caribana, but maybe there will be a new booking to celebrate then!

For a more thorough overview of the awesomeness piling up in my life these days — especially this June — make sure you’re added to my email newsletter, because the July mailout is going to be one to remember. For the purposes of this blog post, though, I want to focus on the show that will be on stage just one week from today =)

Not going to lie – I’m very tired from rehearsals and tech, and the rest of this blog post just got deleted, so I’m going to bang these details out for you (again) as quickly as I can, but please reach out if you have any questions at all.

Who You Callin Black, Eh? is a searing comedy about a young woman trying to claim her identity as an individual amidst the smothering influences of her white mother, her black father, her mean-spirited high school peers, and the larger-than-life characters she meets when she moves from Atlantic Canada to Toronto. It’s written by Rita Shelton Deverell, who is one of my mentors, so I’d be excited to have anything at all to do with it — much more so to be playing the role of Our Heroine, and with my very own dear old Dad as our musician! We have 7 shows for you to choose from, so please let me know which one you’re coming to and I’ll look for you in the theatre =D

Factory Theatre (Studio), 125 Bathurst St (at Adelaide)

July 4th at 10:15pm, July 6th at 6:45pm, July 7th at 1:00pm, July 9th at 8:00pm, July 11th at 5:45pm (relaxed performance), July 12th at 4:15pm (relaxed performance), July 14th at 12:15pm.

Tickets are $11 each plus taxes/fees, I advise you to purchase ahead of time at www.fringetoronto.com 

Bye for now!

 

*topples into bed*

 

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Oh, what a night . . . (lucky for you there are two more!)

You guys.

I am tired, footsore, slightly throatsore, and so deeply happy. (I know the pic doesn’t look like it, but we can go ahead and blame that on pre-show nerves.)

A few hours ago, I was performing in front of a live theatre audience for the first time in years. Though my songs and my scene were far from perfect, I’m extremely proud of what the cast and crew were able to pull off, grateful for the energy we received from the patrons, and excited to do it again three more times in the next 48 hours – phew!!

I’m yawning as I type  . . . and I’ve got an important audition tomorrow before reporting to the theatre . . . and it’ll take some time to redo my hair after my morning jog . . . so I’m going to sign off real soon! But let me make sure you have all the details you need before I go.

The show, presented by High Society Cabaret, is called The Silent Goodbye. As my burlesque alter ego, Isla Caine, I play an ambitious jazz singer named Lovey St Claire whose boss is the John Doe in a murder mystery set in 1930s Chicago. Not just for Lovey, but for the entire cast, this is a show full of wonderful characters and costumes, great music, and a surprising amount of emotional highs and lows as well as lots of laughs.

We’re at The Commons, 587A College St (upstairs) in Little Italy, across the street from Café Diplomatico. Tickets are $35 in advance or $45 if you pay at the door, and arts workers as well as sex workers may be able to take advantage of special pricing so contact me if you belong to either of those categories. You can click here to order your tickets for Friday May 24th at 8pm, Friday the 24th at 10:30pm, or Saturday May 25th at 8pm (almost sold out). Please do me a favour and answer, when asked, that you found out about the show from me, Chattrisse! =)

Here’s a sneak peek from rehearsal . . . now claim your ticket and come see the real deal! ;-)

*goes to bed, finally*

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Try, Try Again

Here in southwestern Ontario, we’ve had a couple of recent cold snaps – after springlike weather started to feel normal, we were reintroduced to snow, cold wind and even some freezing sleet. In fact, this morning I heard that some parts of the GTA might see snow this weekend – and this weekend is practically going to be May!

This makes so many of us irritated or even downright furious . . . which, now that I think about it, is kind of funny. As someone who sometimes needs 4 alarms to get out of bed, how dare I be mad at nature for not flawlessly transitioning from winter into spring in the blink of an eye?

Full disclosure: one of the lessons I’m trying to learn lately is that of patience and compassion. This applies both to other people and to myself, because I realize that being so short on patience with other people and being so short on patience with myself are two sides of the same coin. Sadly, I’ve noticed that I’m great at maintaining high standards . . . let’s be honest, it’s a habit that’s led me to accomplish most of the things I’m proud of in my life . . . but I really want to get better at being understanding too, the kind of person who you’d feel okay coming to and saying “I made a mistake and I don’t know what to do” because you’re pretty sure I wouldn’t just say “Well, what’d you make such a dumb mistake for??”

I’m good at maintaining patience with children (so far; I know the real test will come when I’m a parent or similarly invested and exhausted) . . . not nearly as good at being compassionate toward teenagers and adults . . . good at keeping my cool with employees who I train, but only to a point. And I fear that some of the people I love the most are also those for whom I don’t show nearly enough compassion . . . which does worry me somewhat about my temperament as a parent, a spouse, an older creative professional, etc. I really wish this were something I could just learn and be done with learning, instead of something I seem to fail at continually.

But no matter how many tries it takes, spring always comes. And for an entire season to turn over requires countless miracles; so I continue to remind myself that my task of becoming more compassionate is far from impossible.

And maybe, like summer, I’ll appreciate it even more after all of these false starts and setbacks . . . right?

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Reflections on a Very Artsy Weekend

Wow.

This past week was super-tiring. The week coming up will probably be equally tiring, for different reasons. So I’m proud and gratified that I made/took/created time for a variety of artistic pursuits in between, especially in the last 48 hours or so.

Friday night I came home from work and watched one of my fave films with Dad: The Devil Wears Prada. It’s so well-done, and it’s held up really nicely over time (can you believe it’s 13 years old?!), and since I’ve only watched clips of it lately (thank you, Lessons from the Screenplay; thank you, Dylan is in Trouble) it felt good to take the whole thing in.

Saturday I spent basically the entire day at the Canadian Film Fest, which is such a fun, well-organized event that I’m astonished I’ve never been to it until this year! Over the three screenings I attended I was able to watch 20 short films and a feature, projects that some of my friends and acquaintances were part of won awards, and neither my tiredness (nor my bummed-out-ness at not having won the $10,000 prize I was hoping for as one of the Top Ten Semifinalists for their Script Contest) were enough to keep me from the afterparty, which I THOROUGHLY enjoyed. (That’s in all caps because it’s surprising; normally I’m super awkward or even bored at industry parties.) My boyfriend and I had some great conversations, only about half of which concerned filmmaking and storytelling and art, and I was reminded that I’m still on the right track even when I don’t feel like I am — plus, I was inspired to add a new tidbit to that same Top Ten screenplay.

Right before I left for church this morning, a neighbour of mine tipped me off that today is the last day to see Femmes Noires, the stirring Mickalene Thomas exhibit at the AGO. I made my way there after services despite the dozen tasks already in my dayplanner, and I’m so deeply glad that I did. Femmes Noires reminded me that it’s really easy to overlook the celebration of black women’s bodies and the amplification of our voices unless you immerse yourself in work like this once in awhile — because our bodies are so often exposed and our voices routinely caricaturized. These are actually themes which show up in that same screenplay as well, so the timing of this visit was perfect. Also, out of the kindness of his heart and without me even asking, the gentleman who greeted me at the desk gave me a complimentary ticket! So I was smiling even before I checked my coat, and was happy to do a bit of shopping in the gift store on my way out. ;-)

I did just a little bit of writing a few hours later, adding to some thoughts on a new project which I’ll write either for TV or for film. And finally, though certainly not least,  literary art has been a big part of my weekend, as I’ve been keeping a promise I made to myself that I’ll read at least a few pages of a book (yes, it has to be paper held in my hands) every day. The Handmaid’s Tale has been getting most of my reading attention lately. So, from commercial film to indie film and indie filmmaking to visual (and audiovisual) art to the literary arts, I feel like I’ve really listened to that part of me who’s always asking to be immersed in the artistic world(s) this weekend. I might even carve out the time to play some piano before calling it a night.

And maybe all of that will make the upcoming week, which so far looks decidedly non-artsy, a little easier to handle.

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Minding my own Business?

. . . in one sense, I haven’t been doing enough of this. Actually, later this month I’ll be renewing my ID number with a great line of personal care products because I miss buying them at a heavily discounted price =D

But that’s a network marketing company, which makes it different from what I want to talk about here. I set (and blogged) myself a goal in January 2018 to spend more of my money with small-time, individual or family-owned businesses; black ones in particular. Since I did actually remember to keep notes on my first-time small-business purchases throughout the rest of 2018, I thought I’d give a quick report on that . . . and you may want to go back and peruse that post, because it’s one where I wasn’t quite satisfied with my “resolution” of the topic. I found it really interesting to read again 13 months later.

Anyway! Here are my first-time purchases from small business for the year 2018 (not counting random suppliers on sites like AliExpress).

1. Very soon after that blog I purchased a lovely black mermaid pin set from Oh Plesiosaur, and was extra happy to do so because of what that business and its owners represent (they’re definitely allies). They’ve changed their name to Shoal, but you’ll see the same great items if you want to check out their new site.

2. My dad’s birthday is early in the year, and I decided to incorporate some punny Dad jokes into his gift by carefully perusing the socks available at YoSox, then buying 4 pairs.

3. My boyfriend celebrated a milestone birthday, and I started buying his gifts early – beginning with this dope pin which any hip hop head would love (there are different ones for East Coast and West Coast albums, so everybody wins). I also scooped a birthday present for one of my best friends, and in both cases the giftees absolutely loved them. Good lookin out, Good Dope Supply Co!

4. While in Haïti, I visited the Ogier-Fombrun Museum, formerly a plantation. One of the things that struck me in their gift shop was a selection of locally handmade cards, with designs which were created from banana leaves . . . so naturally I bought a bunch (ha ha).

5. Remember that milestone birthday from #3? I decided we needed some big numeric helium balloons. I received great service from TO Balloons (and their location was perfect for me), so . . . check!

6. I’m pretty sure that non-franchised vintage or thrift stores count as “small businesses,” since they’re essentially ongoing garage sales. This year I discovered Public Butter and I’ll probably take a third trip over there pretty soon, as my first time there I was just a spectator and my second time I only bought a couple of bandannas.

7. Festivals like Afrofest are great places to shop small and local – this year I ended up seeing one of my high school friends and she was selling the most delicious-smelling body butter I have ever encountered, so of course I bought some from her Diva Creations booth. Give their Mango Burst Body Butter a try and see if I’m exaggerating!

8. Speaking of festivals (we’re almost done speaking about butter), my mom helped to organize a music festival in Windsor, so in July I spent some time there and was extremely disciplined, buying only one thing. It was this pretty reversible ring which I can’t describe very well except that due to a clever hinge construction, you can choose which of two stones to showcase each time you wear it. Here’s the thing though . . . I don’t remember their name. So I hope Google is somehow able to help you out if you want one of your own. Sorry!

9. Probably the first purchase on this list that I’ve already repurchased: Curl Quench Hair Butter from EarthTones Naturals. My girlfriend invited me to a demo at her home where Dr Susan Walker came and spoke with us about our hair textures and needs. I bought a tub of the Curl Quench that night and then ordered two big ones on Black Friday weekend. Absolutely love it – still!

10. My hair was a topic of concern for sure, because I noticed it thinning over the summer. Eden Kingdom Essential sells a few products to help with this, and I’ve definitely seen a positive change with consistent use of their Formula D hair regrowth serum and shampoo. (Good thing I typed this up today, because I’m reminded now that I need to re-up on both.)

11. One of my faves! For years now I’ve been wanting to support a particular acquaintance of mine who sells beautiful things – formerly it was clothing which I wasn’t able to justify because it was basically so gorgeous I didn’t have enough places to wear it, and now it’s jewellery with a message. So I prowled the Omi Woods website, saved up and bought myself the Queen of Sheba coin necklace in October, and every time I wear it feels like a special occasion.

12. The One of a Kind Show is another great chance to support local and/or small business owners, and back in 2017 I’d watched my friend buy a glass straw from Glass Sipper, then gone home and thought, Huh. I kinda wished I’d grabbed one for myself. So this year I did =) I admit I don’t use it super-often, but every little bit helps when you’re concerned about the environment.

13. Also at the OOAK Show, I met Lana of Lana Betty Geometric Contemporary Jewellery and she did a fantastic job making me a birthstone ring. I wanted to go back and visit her booth again before the show closed – maybe I’ll be able to reconnect with her at the spring 2019 edition =D

14. I attended the Black-Owned Holiday Market in December, and while my first purchase there doesn’t count (I bought a necklace from a vendor who is both black and Afrocentric, but it’s not my first time purchasing from her), this tignon I bought from My Tignon sure does! It was cool that they even sat me down and showed me a couple of different ways to wrap it.

Is there a Small Business Challenge that could be woven into this? Will I hit 20 in 2019, even with my caveat that they have to be people/business I haven’t purchased from before? Guess we’ll have to stay tuned to find out . . .

. . . but the answer is probably No, because we’re halfway through February and I haven’t been keeping track the way I did last year. Lol, sorry!

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Keep Ya Head Up

Possibly my favourite Tupac song, but more importantly, I’m sure someone out there needs encouragement today … and if I’m being honest, I’ve needed some over the last few days so it only makes sense to put some out into the world.

Nothing super-awful has happened to me; it’s just been a period of trying to do well in different areas of my life (even when they’re in direct competition with one another) and then feeling like a 360-degree-failure if the results are less than stellar (even though they’re in direct competition with one another). In any case, I figure it couldn’t hurt to share some of my strategies for dealing with a bad mood, bad day or bad week. And if you have any you’d like to share, please do! They’ll be gladly read and considered, and you might even help someone.

1. Take a bath or a shower . . . hot water can be so soothing that it’s usually worth the uncomfortable cold which those of us in a Canadian winter typically have to deal with immediately upon removing ourselves from the bath or shower. Plus steam is good for your skin, so this could help you look better than you feel ;-)

2. Take a nap . . . this helped me today. And definitely would have helped me on Friday. There are honestly very few times in my life that going to sleep hasn’t made me feel better in some measure.

3. Pray . . . but please make sure that your praying doesn’t turn into brooding. It can be hard as a mere human (who is vulnerable because you’re already feeling bad) to control the tendency toward wallowing in misery under the pretense of talking about it to someone who is more powerful than we are. Hint: if you feel worse after your prayer than you did before, you might need to change your praying technique (some other time, when you’re in a more productive state of mind).

4. Gift yourself . . . carefully. Listen here – don’t you go racking up crazy credit charges and then coming back to my blog to blame me for it! Sometimes a certain treat or accessory or even a major purchase can indeed brighten your mood and outlook (at the moment I’m honestly considering becoming a pet owner again), but the threat of making an unwise spending decision is a serious one. Can you maybe gift yourself with a Me Date to rewatch one of your fave movies instead? Or have a cup of a tea you really like? Or look upon that nap or that bath as a gift?

5. Talk to a loved one about why you feel bad . . . self-explanatory, to a certain point. All I’ll say on this is that I come away from these conversations feeling better 90% of the time, and 9% of the time if I don’t feel better I’m at least reminded that I’m loved. (As for the other 1%? Hey – sometimes the person you go to for help needs it worse than you do. At least this is a reminder that you’re in good company.) And on a similar note . . .

6. Talk to a loved one about why they feel bad . . . because perspective helps, and because knowing that you’ve helped someone else carry their load can make you feel much better about yours.

 

Here’s hoping we all feel better soon. <3

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Look. Forward.

You know that cliché about how you should do something that scares you once a day? Well, I’m counting on the fact that not many people read my blog to make this less scary for me. =)

Goals are important, and they’re (sometimes) more powerful if written down and/or shared with others, and I recently laid out nine career goals for myself to accomplish in 2019. I’m not sharing all of them here because being brave and being flighty are two different things . . . one or two of these goals would be unprofessional of me to talk about on social media, and a couple others are the types of things I’d rather play close to the chest . . . but hey, I’ll give you three!

1) In 2019 I will book (at least) 3 gigs requiring me to sing.

Last April I sang in a burlesque show and was all excited to be returning to the stage as a singer . . . yet I haven’t done it since then. I’m grateful for some other things have come up which I didn’t know about back in springtime, but I was a singer long before I was an actor and it’s time to stop ignoring that. (I began writing this on December 30th, which is the 5th day of Kwanzaa, and its principle is Nia which means purpose . . . noted.)

2) In 2019 I will book (at least) 2 gigs requiring me to act.

Does that seem low? To be perfect honest with you, I’m alright with that. As hinted above, I need to push myself back toward music more, and I’ve got a team and system set up for Chattrisse the actor which Chattrisse the singer doesn’t really have at the moment – so lowballing this one doesn’t bother me. (Besides, I said “at least” . . . so yeah.)

3) In 2019 I will book (at least) 1 gig requiring me to dance.

I haven’t had what I consider to be the full use of my body for two and a half years now, due to some lingering shoulder issues. At one memorable dance audition, I made these shoulder issues worse, and I’ve been very very timid about dancing since then. By now, I’m happy to report that my shoulder is really really close to being back to normal – it’s fine for almost every regular daily task – so it’s time for me to stop using that excuse.

There can be some overlap between these goals – I hope there is! Let’s just say I were to book a musical theatre job, like Memphis or Hamilton or The Lion King – I would be acting and singing and dancing, and that counts for all three categories. There might also be overlap between those three and . . .

4) In 2019 I will acquire (at least) 6 new credits as a writer.

Having shared that one with you, I’m actually feeling nervous, which is next door to scared. And to be clear, I’m including the word “credits” because I write stuff all the time, but I’m now talking about things I write which are actually seen/heard/experienced in some sort of public performance or exhibition. Although I don’t know whether something I’ve written in 2018 which is finished and released in 2019 will count for my 2019 total, I do know that I want to write more successful projects: films, songs, web, maybe TV or a published book, I want to write it all. I’ve actually – don’t laugh – started writing my memoirs, because I figure it’s a timesaver (and I’ll remember things better now than when I’m 97 anyway).

And since I’ve gone and spilled the beans on that one, I’ll throw in another bonus shared goal.

5) In 2019 I will write (at least) one spec script.

I’m terrified of having to do this – the idea of writing a script for a make-believe episode of a show which already exists and having to remain consistent with the tone of that show and the voices of its characters really freaks me out. But I’ve been avoiding it for years and it’s time to put on my big-girl-writer hat and get it done.

Okay, enough! Those of you who wish me well, please cheer me on as I go after these goals and others; those of you who I wish well, you know I’m already sending you I-believe-in-you-now-go-get-em thoughts and looking forward to seeing you rise and shine. Those of you who don’t wish me well, how nice of you to stick around! I hope you have a nice day anyway =)

Thanks for reading, everyone . . . and Happy New Year!

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Giving Thanks, Specifically

Canadian Thanksgiving was nearly two months ago and American Thanksgiving, immediately followed by Black Friday and Cyber Monday and Giving Tuesday, is now behind us too. And although I’d started writing something about the downward spiral of offering apparent deals as part of a yearly tradition (maybe some other time), I’m still so happy from the great night I just had that I decided to let that spill over into this post instead.

Every night before going to bed I make myself list 16 things that were good about that day. Right now, since I can feel the upward swing of positive momentum (especially in contrast to a few bad weeks I had earlier this fall), I’m going to list and give thanks for 10 things that were great about just this past month. Not in order, they are . . .

1. Last night’s “Working the Scene in Colour” event was really wonderful, and I’d feel that way even if I didn’t get great feedback from several people on the short script of mine that was read aloud.

2. My next short film, a project which I wrote and am co-producing and co-starring in, is humming along right on schedule to be shot in December, and I just recently found a way to save us a chunk of money. Both good feelings, lol!

3. Yesterday I was able to snag some great finds and support local vendors at the One Of A Kind Show, and that segues nicely into the fact that . . .

4. I’m almost done Christmas and Kwanzaa shopping for others (and myself, let’s be honest)!

5. Last Thursday, a short film I was able to participate in aired on CBC, and you can still watch it here if your IP address is Canadian.

6. A commercial that I shot back in April is apparently still being aired somewhere, because this month I got another cheque. (The dream, lol…)

7. I’m back in acting class, and it feels great. Next year is going to show some lovely blooms because of work that’s been done throughout 2017.

8. This is related to #7 – I’m finding myself in the privileged situation of being able to encourage others and connect them to people, places, ideas, etc. which will help them achieve their dreams.

9. My day job has been much more satisfying lately, and (I’m including this as a November thing to be glad about even though it’s not 100% official yet) and sorta-promotion that I got earlier this year is a really-though promotion now =)

10. Someone who’s been in my life as a friendly acquaintance for the better part of a decade is becoming a dear friend of mine. One of the things that disappoints us all about growing up, having people get married and/or raise kids and have to shift their priorities, is that is feels as though we “lose” friends . . . but if you know where to look, you find them too.

 

That’s all for now – talk soon!!