Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Book Tag

Book Tag--here are the rules.

  • Grab the book nearest you. Right now.
  • Turn to page 56.
  • Find the fifth sentence.
  • Post that sentence along with these instructions.
  • Don't dig for your favorite book, use the CLOSEST
Here's mine:

"Which he did over the next twenty minutes, calling only one witness, Master Chief Riley, who recounted the boarding and gave a color commentary to the video tape record of the boarding."

"Clear and Present Danger" by Tom Clancy

Nowhere near as cool as Patty's!

If you haven't done this yet, tag, you're it!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Memory Lane--a few of my old poems


Maida is taking a creative writing class at school right now, and it reminded me of the days when I was discovering my ability and desire to write. I wrote poems in the beginning, and I thought it might be fun to post some of them. I'd love to hear what you think!

This one is based on the above painting by Rousseau. I'm sure I didn't interpret the painting the way Rousseau intended it, but then again.... I like this one because of the symbolism, even though it's kind of depressing. Plus, the being in the painting is clearly a woman.... I guess sometimes you see with your mind's eye.

Naked (After Rousseau's "The Snake Charmer")
I
The dark man stands between
a deep, wide river,
and a jungle.
A cowl
hides his face.
He coaxes currents
into small pools
at his feet
with the flute
he holds to his lips.

A serpent's body
ribbons
around a mahogany arm.
It's head
hovers
just above
the charmer's left shoulder.

II
The charmer
is trying to climb
into our skin.

He's bigger than us.
Our skin will crack.
We'll have to shed it.

And we will be left
between a deep, wide river
and a jungle,
raw,
naked.

Amy Young, 1988

This one is based on a photo by Robert Frank. I couldn't find one that wasn't a thumbnail...

Southern Streetcar (After a photograph by Robert Frank)
I
In the first seat
of the streetcar
sits a white woman.
Her cheeks sag
to join her slight double chin.
The blind ont he window
covers her forehead.
She holds a book,
a closed Bible,
on her lap.

II
Two children
sit in
the second seat,
dressed in their Sunday best.
The older one looks like a young soldier,
staunch and solid,
with slightly flared nostrils.
By almost arching his back,
he avoids touching
his little brother,
whose fingers
are sticky from his candy.

III
And in the third seat
sits the black man,
withhis blazing eyes
turned skyward.
His shirt
hangs loosely
over his shallow chest,
like water
polishing a flat stone.

Amy Maida Young, 1989

This one is fun.

i am not myself today

i am a blouse,
made of royal blue
crepe de chine,
thin and transluscent.

i hang in the dark attic,
gathering dust
and the smell of moth balls.

my left shoulder,
with gathers in its seam,
sags off the wooden hanger

and i feel my color
fade
like watered-down paint on canvas.

Amy Maida Young, 1989

Okay, one more.

Apocalypse (after Omar Salinas)
Confusion today
smells
of brush fire,
rancid oil and balm.

It has the mouth
of a liar
denying himself
as he sneaks into my flesh.

Confusion has the nightmares
of deep-sea divers
drifting in cobalt,
losing sight of the
quick-silver surface.

It feels the crush
of a moth
mating with its reflection.

Many things of confusion
cry like a bleeding sun
in an ashen sky
while the mountainside
across the valley
burns.

Amy Maida Young 1989

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Sure on This Shining Night




Yesterday was a full day! Because we are down to one car and Jason had to work, which meant he would be hurrying downtown for the concerts, I left the house at 11:30 to catch the bus. It's been a long time since I rode the bus alone downtown. It wasn't bad, but I felt pretty silly wearing my formal with tennis shoes. (I didn't want to walk to the bus and then to temple square in my heels--probably a good decision given the fact that my feet were killing me and I could barely walk by the end of the night!)

We met at the Tabernacle at 1:00 and rehearsed until 4. After an hour break for dinner, we had our first concert. This concert was added because the Tickets to the first scheduled concert (7:30) were gone so quickly. I took a few pics while the band was warming up. How often does someone like me have the opportunity to get this close to the pipes?



A little way into the first concert, Kelly DeHaan, our director, left. I wondered if he was sick or something, but he was directing his high school choir in a different building on Temple Square. Jason's mom came to this concert, and she brought a friend. We weren't able to see her afterwards, but she texted Jason and said the concert was wonderful. Yay!

The second concert started at 7:30. By then, I had been standing in my heels for a few hours (5 hours, basically), and my right middle toe was soundly asleep. I don't know whether I'm getting old or what, but my body was really mad at me. My feet hurt, my arm hurt from holding my music in the same place for so long, my throat hurt from singing. It wasn't a comfortable position. However, it was wonderful to sing in that incredible building! With this concert, I knew I had friends in the audience as well as my parents and kids. Maida brought her boyfriend too. I gave it my all, knowing it didn't matter too much if my voice was gone by the end of it.



What a great experience it was! There's something about singing the Hallelujah chorus with that many talented people, especially in the packed Tabernacle with Christmas lights glittering in the windows. It was so fun!

Merry Christmas!

Friday, November 14, 2008

I need more online dating stories!

I've been debating on creating a fake identity for myself and getting on an LDS singles site so that I can look at the profiles and stuff. I'm not sure it would be good, though. I don't want anyone asking me out. (yikes!) Anybody willing to share their experiences with me? What's it like looking at the profiles? I was at a nail salon a while ago with Maida and a bunch of the girls there who weren't working at the time were looking at myspace profiles and talking about the guys in Vietnamese. It was rather humorous to watch them chat about these guys even though I didn't understand a word they said.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Writing

So, I officially started the singles novel today. It's shaping up in my head as a "Jane Austen Book Club" type of book--several different characters with the same goal who meet together once a month for dinner and a good venting. I've only heard two stories so far, and I'd love more! Hopefully it will come together well and I'll be able to do the stories justice.

Monday, October 27, 2008

writing

So, I've really been feeling the need to write lately. I've got this idea that I think could be fun, but I need help to do it. When I tell people I'm a writer, so often the people I talk to say something like, "Well you should hear some of my stories." I think most of them have no intention of ever writing their stories, but they just want to tell me their stories. So, I'm inviting stories. I'd like to write a fictionalized collection of short stories about being LDS and single. Since I haven't been there in a while and I only have my imagination to go from, if you've got anything you'd like to share, I'd be thrilled to hear it! I will fictionalize the stories, of course, and share them with you before I attempt publication. I'm hoping to get stories that can have a positive spin. Spread the word! And e-mail your stories to amymaidawadsworth@gmail.com!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Eight, Eight, Eight

Thanks, Rach! Let’s play!

Eight TV Shows I love to watch:
1. Heroes
2. Battlestar Gallactica
3. Chuck
4. The Office
5. 24
6. Scrubs
7. Deadliest Catch
8. Science Channel

Eight favorite places to eat:
1. TGI Fridays
2. Cheesecake Factory
3. Café Rio
4. Taco Bell
5. Noodles & Co.
6. Village Inn
7. IHOP
8. My parents’ house

Eight things that happened yesterday:
1. I took the kids to school.
2. I went to a CLA (computer lab assistant) training session and learned about thinkfinity and social bookmarking
3. I finished the critique I was working on for Covenant.
4. I made nachos and spinach dip for dinner.
5. I wrote a chapter in my latest attempt at a novel.
6. I read Alma 17:13-18 with my kids.
7. I talked to my mom on the phone for ½ hour.
8. I went to bed by 11:00. (amazing!)

Eight things I look forward to:
1. Jason’s play being done so he can take a break.
2. Maida’s production of Grease.
3. Halloween
4. Thanksgiving
5. Christmas
6. Our Sterling Singers concert in the Tabernacle on November 29
7. A trip to Disneyland in the spring (hopefully)
8. Figuring out Jessi’s seizure med dosage.

Eight things I love about fall:
1. Cooler weather
2. More versatile wardrobe
3. Pumpkin bread, cookies, pie, cake, etc.
4. Football
5. Holidays
6. All the baking
7. The scenery
8. Hot chocolate

Eight things on my wish list:
1. A new car, preferably a hybrid that gets killer gas mileage
2. An add-on to the back of the house—4 rooms, including two bedrooms, an office, and a room with a hot tub.
3. New carpet throughout the house, the rest of the house painted and a new floor in the kitchen.
4. A full tuition scholarship for Maida.
5. A quick, easy way to lose weight and still eat what I want.
6. A laptop for each of my kids, tricked out with the things they use the most.
7. Enough money to get my whole family out of debt.
8. A cure for cancer and autism

I tag everyone who reads my blog and hasn’t been tagged yet.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Letter F

Here are my 10 favorite things that start with the letter F. (Thanks, Rach! I love to play!)

1. Number one is easy! Family. I love, Love, LOVE my family.

2. Freedom. I love the fact that I live in a country where the thing that holds me back most is myself. I am free to live my religion according to the dictates of my conscience. I am free to vote for whom I choose and to spend my money at the establishments I wish to support. Freedom is awesome!

3. Fiction. (I'm predictable, yes?) I love fiction because it has an uncanny way of telling the truth. I love to read it, write it, critique, and revise it. I love it in book form, play form, and film form. Fiction is awesome!

4. Friends. I have such wonderful friends! I don't see them often enough, but now with the joy of blogging, I'm able to keep in touch! (Plus, I get to write! Yeah, love the blogging thing. But that starts with b....)

5. Fresh Flowers. I especially like daisies because they are simple and happy and they come in all colors. I also like the smell of lilacs in bloom.

6. Fun! I love to have fun with family and friends!

7. Faith. I love my religion. I also love the basic concept of faith--it is the driving force in everything we do. Faith is belief that is strong enough to cause action. It's a simple, yet astounding concept.

8. Feasts. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I love food. (A little too much, I'm afraid.)

9. Farthingale. A farthingale is a hoop skirt worn in the 16th and 17th centuries. I would love to make a farthingale for myself someday.

10. Facade. It's a song from Jekyll and Hyde, this awesome little show that's playing at Rogers through November 7th. :)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Check it out!

I posted a new 1/2 hour activity on my school blog. Check it out. Makes me laugh!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Entropy

Jason taught gospel doctrine today, and talked about one of the most interesting topics--the essence of mortality in one word--entropy. For those who don't know what it means, here's the Webster definition:

entropy 1: a measure of the unavailable energy in a closed thermodynamic system that is also usually considered to be a measure of the system's disorder, that is a property of the system's state, and that varies directly with any reversible change in heat in the system and inversely with the temperature of the system; broadly : the degree of disorder or uncertainty in a system
2 a
: the degradation of the matter and energy in the universe to an ultimate state of inert uniformity b: a process of degradation or running down or a trend to disorder

This truly is the measure of mortality, isn't it? Constant decay. We reach cleanliness, but with time, that cleanliness decays into disorder. This applies to our spiritual lives as well as our physical lives. If we are not constantly keeping up, nurturing, encouraging, taking care of our selves, our homes, our children, our skills, our testimonies, it all decays. Why does the pride cycle exist? Because we are in a constant state of entropy, and we don't keep our testimonies where they should be. We slack off. We rest. We take a break, and before we know it, entropy has disorganized our minds or our spirits.

Kind of a depressing thought until you think about our Heavenly Father's Eternal nature. He knows how to stop entropy. Even reverse it and restore us to happiness and perfection. Immortality. So, to be decayed is to be unorganized and in a state of disorder. To be in a perfect state is to be organized and created. Pretty deep, but pretty cool concept. To learn how to create is to learn how to take something that is unorganized and organize it.

That's something to think about.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Projects

So, I'm neck deep in projects again. Sewing 16 musette bags for South Pacific, which opens on the 15th. Sewing two pairs of red polka-dotted shorts for South Pacific, one for Jason and one to be used only as a prop. I'm also sewing book bags for the Humanitarian Center. I'm either sewing constantly or not at all. Right now, it's constant. I'm also trying to keep up the good work on organization. Still busy shredding years of paperwork, but I'm checking and shredding my mail every day now so it doesn't build up like it has for the past seven years. As soon as I can, I'll get more paint and finish the rest of the kitchen. I'm also planning on doing something with the cupboard doors--a cute, bright-colored daisy motif. I'm going to stencil the daisies from a wall quilt pattern I've got. I love doing stuff like that--taking something that would typically be used in one type of craft and using it in something else.

I also went to DI last week and found a few baskets I can use. One will be for umbrellas. I need to figure out a way to line it with plastic in case it ever rains again and our umbrellas have a chance to get wet... Plus, I'll go back to work on the 25th. Hopefully I'll spend the first few weeks of school getting familiar with our new lab. I still haven't heard anything about coming to tear down the old one. That's worrisome. I hope we don't have another school year with antiquated computers that can't even download flash plugins!

No rest for the weary. But I'd rather be busy than bored!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

A Thought

History does not repeat itself. We repeat history.

Friday, July 18, 2008

I want to be a writer when I grow up.

So, I started reading one of Orson Scott Card's new novels, Invasive Procedures. I'm only 47 pages in, but I love it. I love his style, I love the way he changes POV, I love his voice. He's awesome and such a talent. I want to grab an audience the way he grabs me. I want to spark the mind the way he sparks mine.

I told Maida about the dream I had the other night, and she said she thought it would make a good novel too. I want to write, but every time I look around my house, I'm reminded that writing probably shouldn't be a high priority right now. Sigh. But it's burning a hole in my brain.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Getting Organized

I want to get organized. I woke up early this morning without setting an alarm, and all I could think about was how to organize the girls' bedroom. I moved furniture around in my head, tried to picture different colors of paint on the walls, tried to figure out a way to keep as much of our furniture as possible without encouraging the cluttered feeling that permeates my entire house. I'm not sure it's possible. The house is small and I have no storage and everyone in my house is a packrat. It doesn't help that none of us like to clean.

I have to get creative because I have to make due with what I have. Limited budget, limited strength, limited energy. I've got three dressers downstairs that are entirely different in style and color. The carpet needs to be replaced. I would love to gut the place and start over, but that's just not an option.

I feel like my house is a reflection of how I feel personally. I feel cluttered. It's time to clean the cobwebs out of the hard to reach corners and make myself healthier and more presentable. The problem is, I want all of these changes to take place immediately. It takes time. I need to be consistent and work on the changes a little every day. I need to be satisfied with the best I can do.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Identity

I've been thinking a lot about identity. Partially because it's a theme in my next book, and partially because my credit sucks. If someone tried to define me by what they saw on paper, how accurate a definition would it be? Are we defined by our spending habits, our surfing habits, the little digital and DNA trails we leave everywhere we go? If all of that information was collected into one area, would that completely define us? It would certainly say a lot. It would reveal our bad habits, our addictions, what we find relaxing, what we believe in. It would show us how we let off steam and how we deal with stress. I complain that I have lots of bills, but I'm guessing 70% of my money last month went to food and gas--after the mortgage payment. It's sad how many times I go to Burger King.

I think the one, and perhaps most important, thing that digital and physical information wouldn't define is potential. The evidence against us can't crush who we are because regardless of what the world sees, each individual has tremendous potential inside of them. Potential that can only manifest itself according to a person's faith. Faith in themselves and faith in a higher power to help them reach beyond the digital trail. And, let's face it, faith is something you just can't quantify.

Put that on your loan application....

Friday, June 27, 2008

An Ode to Marriage

I like being married. I really do. It's not always the easiest thing, don't get me wrong, but it's so wonderful to have someone to grow with. Someone to be vulnerable with who won't take that vulnerability and use it against you. My husband and I had a bit of a tiff last night, AFTER he bought me roses and didn't tell me about them. We made up, and he gave me the roses. He could have held that against me and given them to someone else. (We're actors. He gives flowers to other women all the time.) But he didn't. He gave them to me. He held my hand and stood by me. It's so nice to feel like he will stand by me no matter what. We've been together almost 18 years, and I am more sure that he will stand by me than I have ever been. How wonderful is that? It's nice to be in love with someone I've been through so much with. It's even nicer to know he loves me back.

Something new.

So, I've always believed in learning by trying something new. My hobbies have been many and varied. I think I'll try blogging now. I can see how this could become time consuming and addictive... Let's try it!