Officially Professional

It might not look like much, but it’s kind of a big deal… representatively, anyway.

This, my friends (and people I definitely do not know), is my first official photographer pass and credential as a professional photographer.

Sure, it was for a friend’s band’s performance…, and it isn’t exactly the kind of photography I am aiming to do most of the time…, but it was also for real – I, Hannah, was listed as “Photographer” on the special guest list.

I declared myself a photographer and that I am doing photography (not just ‘trying to get it going’ or ‘trying it out’) this past Wednesday night, and, here I am, Friday night, with an official photographer pass.(!)

How cool is that?(!!!)

Again, it isn’t the style of photography I’m aiming to do with most of my photoing, but it is still totally fun and totally cool!

Special bonus that they are totally okay if none of the photos turned out… I had never photographed a band in a club with uber-nuts lights flashing everywhere except on the band members’ fronts, so it was a good low-risk opportunity to practice and to learn.

(Aah!)

Yay!

Post-a-day 2019

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Some days

Some days, you want to go back to sleep, but you get up and go anyway, and you end up meeting just the right people (and rather unexpectedly).

And then, you want to nap, but you don’t, and you meet just the right people and you serve your community wonderfully in a much-needed way that no one else had been able to manage.

And then, you want to go to bed super early, but you don’t, because you’ve met just the right people.

And you discover that this mantra and meditation class is exactly where you needed to be, and things had to go this way today, in order for you to end up here as you did, being where you needed to be.

And you are still totally exhausted as you stumble up to bed, but you feel great through and through, because, all-in-all, it was a great day.

Yeah… some days…

Or maybe that’s just the case for me…

๐Ÿ˜›

Post-a-day 2019

Music tonight

I pulled out my guitar tonight and played.

I had thought that it had been maybe a month or so since I last played, and then another couple weeks or few since I had been playing regularly.

However…, I did some calculations and checking (mainly here), and discovered that I have played my guitar a maximum of a handful of times since September, the most recent one being in December…

It’s mid-March right now.

That means that I was absurdly off on my passive calculations, and it has actually been almost half a year since I played guitar regularly, and only a max of five occasions in there – though, probably more like three – have found me playing it for, say, ten minutes.

Granted, I have played a bit of ukulele since then, but that has been rather sparse, too… and my last regular playing of ukulele on the daily was actually a year ago.

I did a while of playing/making music every day for myself, no matter what, back in early Fall, but I somehow stopped…, which I usually don’t do, when I come up with something like that… (I’m thinking I reached my goal of 40 days, or else I hit moving and the absurdity that was involved with that, and so I didn’t have any instruments with me for a while, and was too distracted and exhausted by everything else either to notice or to bother with it, if I did notice.)

Part of it is as I have known for years: If I don’t have the guitar out (e.g. on a stand, from which I need only to pick up the waiting guitar in order to play it), I end up rarely playing, with the reverse being true, also – if the guitar is out, I will play it often.

Another part of it is that I miss my other guitars, and somehow feel something like being unfair to them, or like I have abandoned them, and therefore am cautious about spending too much time and energy with the Japan guitar I have with me.

Granted, the idea is totally absurd… however, that in no way changes the fact that I am experiencing it.

So, I sent a message a bit ago to the person who took temporary charge of my guitars when I moved to Japan.

He lives here in Houston, but is gone during the school year, so I might have to wait for summer… hopefully, though, his spring break will be the same as mine, and we’ll get to have coffee and then go pick up my guitars from his home, to take them to my new home.

And maybe I’ll get to pet his family cat then, too.

(On a related note, I have been missing my cat all evening, yet also totally not missing having a cat – I love animals; I just don’t want to live with any right now. I mean, let’s be real, I think this raccoon is enough for the time being.) ๐Ÿ˜›

Anyway… I played parts of two Shake Russell songs tonight, and they both were awesome.

The guitar totally needs new strings, but that is for another day’s/night’s tasks – for now, it has done its job of getting me strumming around and creating music again. ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m hoping that, while with family tomorrow, my uncle will play some Shake Russell songs with me, since we often all end up doing music stuff, anyway, when together, and our families (my mom’s and her sister’s) love Shake Russell music.

Okay, I’m stopping now, before I continue on to talk about how I love Shake Russell’s concerts, where here are only sixty-ish people, and how that’s my kind of concert, and how Japan was like that at times, too, and now I’m suddenly super sentimental, and tears this and tears that, another hour has passed, and I’m still not asleep in bed. ๐Ÿ˜›

Therefore, I bid you wonderful nights and days and mornings and evenings and everything in between. โค

Peace

Hannah

P.S. (Aha!) I’ve remembered: I stopped the daily music because it was something I was aiming to do daily, but not something I’d committed to doing daily… it is a small distinction between the two, but it is important to note – life got busy, and I opted for sleep over music… :/ …, but I didn’t break my word on anything there. ๐Ÿ™‚ (Phew!)

Post-a-day 2019

Always be humble and kind

Tonight, I bought my own real pair of western boots that not only can I wear to help work on my brother’s property, but that look amazing and totally beautiful;

my mom ended up not being able to come to the rodeo with me and our family friend, and a different friend’s cousin canceled on coming with her and her mom;

the family friend and I met up, therefore, with my friend and her mom;

the two adults (because my friend and I are the children of the group) really hit it off, like old pals;

we all four got to ride in the Grand Entry at the rodeo, on two separate wagons;

I checked for tickets to the concert one last time, and found that there were exactly two available, and right where I wanted, so I bought them;

we discovered that our seats were an error, just as I registered a text message from the ticket office telling me the same thing;

the ticket office e-mailed me even better seats in exchange and kind of as compensation (like way, way better seats);

the two seats next to the two I’d bought ended up being open, and so my friend and her mom didn’t have to split up from us after all (to go to their own two seats elsewhere in the stadium);

Tim McGraw was lovely, as ever, and shows signs only of continuing to be fabulous all around as a human being, as a musician, and as a man (a side I have come to appreciate more and more as I have grown up, especially considering the previous two parts);

Clay Walker just casually showed up to duet with Tim McGraw on one of my childhood absolute favorites (Did you know that Clay Walker is from Texas?);

we had a wonderfully easy time exiting the stadium, grounds, and parking lot, as well as getting home;

and I was lent a truck to be able to visit family next week.

All in all, it was an absolutely magnificent evening.

All week, I wondered about tonight and what to do, because I realized that this concert actually was important to me, due to my deep childhood connection to the artist and his music from back then… and, at every worry, I chose to trust God, and let go of the concern, instead evaluating my present options and doing what I felt encouraged and pulled toward when I asked God.

And then, here was tonight, like Christmas for a small child, with everything landing wonderfully into places I had never quite expected.

Nothing could have worked so well, if things had gone as planned – they still could have been quite good, but nowhere near how they turned out.

In a way, this all goes to show how life can be so much better than we anticipate or think up ourselves – perhaps some divine inspiration in more parts of my life could be just the right thing right now…

Thank you, God.

Hallelujah(!)

โค

Post-a-day 2019

Kinky Boots

If you want some encouragement in your life, combined with some super feel-good music, listen to the soundtrack of “Kinky Boots”.

I have only made it through the first few songs, though I’ve been listening throughout the day for a combination of around an hour, because I keep re-listening to the songs, since they are so perfect for me right now.

Thank you, God, for giving me this gift right now, when its impact is absolutely beautiful.

Post-a-day 2019

How far weโ€™ve come

I saw the light
I’ve been baptized
By the fire in your touch
And the flame in your eyes
I’m born to love again
I’m a brand new man

As these words rang out across the stadium – quite clearly, surprisingly, seeing as where we were – my lips were already moving in synch, silently matching every word since the initial “I”… and tears welled in my eyes, beginning almost immediately to overflow.

I was attending the Brooks and Dunn concert at the rodeo tonight in Houston, kind of as a celebration of my life, for my birthday – something for me, on my own.

I’d asked my mom to stick around with me, but she was ready to head home, so I was okay hanging on my own for the musicians and their music.

When I was about eight years old, I attended the Brooks and Dunn performance at the Astrodome, also for the rodeo.

During their performance, when walking around on the dirt, they pulled two ladies out from the audience to dance with them.

I remember distinctly being upset and embarrassed as the one lady proved, after two quick but failed attempts, that she could not do any sort of partner dancing, let alone the by of two-stepping one of them wanted to do with her.

Rather than rejecting the lady, reading her out for a better model – that’s actually how my brain analyzed it at the time – he just grabbed her around her waist/hips area, and swung her around in a circle or few.

My frustration at this lady for having been unprepared for such a monumental opportunity – dancing with Brooks and Dunn – was not only projected blindly, but had me consider how I would have done, if I’d been the one pulled out onto the floor…

I was rather confident that I would have been able to manage it.

However, I fully acknowledged that I was not certain.

And so I made it my business immediately after this event to make certain that I knew how to two-step and could do it with just about anybody on demand.

Fast-forward a couple decades, and see me at the concert tonight… I found it almost ironic that, though I never anticipated to be pulled out to dance with Brooks and Dunn, here I was, two decades later, likely one of the best country western dancers in the entire stadium, knowledge, ability, and a world title to prove it.

Isn’t that at least a little bit totally crazy?(!!!)?

Anyway, so I can dance, and extremely well, but that’s only part of my mentioning all of this.

When the guys began playing and singing tonight, I was in instant and somewhat constant tears (even throughout the whole show!), right?

Right.

And it occurred quickly to me, This is the power of music.

I was somehow transported to my life when I listed probably daily to Brooks and Dunn music, as I simultaneously saw all that had happened between them and now, how what felt like a lifetime and ten different people ago had somehow led me to today, to who I am today.

There was a lot of good and a decent amount of bad in there, especially early on, and it was a very, very full time all throughout.

And, somehow, here I am, experiencing it all again, while feeling empowered by the open bliss and joy for life I felt back then, reminded of the sadness of what I went through off and on, and encouraged by the fact that I have made it to here so far, and I’ve plenty more wonderful expansion and beautiful growth yet to come for myself in my life.

All of this from music, specific songs and notes and voices and instruments all put together in a certain way, as though, almost, specifically and intentionally with me in mind.

It was of the best kind of medicine.

And this reminds me of how my high school band director always used to tell us that music is a language… tonight, their music spoke directly to me, throughout every place within me.

Post-a-day 2019

For Tonight

I love theatre, especially the musical kind.

Tonight, after much work on the part of many people, we finally got to sit down and watch an official, real, full performance of the world premier of the musical “For Tonight“.

Throughout its preparation and rehearsal time, I had learned all about the story of the show, and didn’t think anything super special about it…

Upon my actually sitting in one of the final run-throughs to do notes, I heard, for the first time, the music, the songs…

And I spent a good portion of the show, to varying degrees, in tears – it was that wonderful and beautiful.

Tonight, after seeing the whole show, with everything mostly polished and actually in order, I fell even more in love with this show and its music.

Let’s be real here: I want a CD right now, so I can listen to those voices singing those songs over and over (and over) again, until the words ride within me on their own… at the moment, I can feel the music inside me, swirling around, whooshing to the various rhythms and beats…, I just don’t have all the words in there, nor any sort of organization going from one song to another…

After tonight, I have my mental fingers crossed like crazy to have an album recorded, which would be totally awesome, using this cast of voices – I love these voices, both individually and as a whole cast.

Yumm… that’s how wonderful the Romani and all the others sound – you just want to eat them up, but savor them, too, like your favorite food/dessert.

Post-a-day 2019