She Kissed the Stage

It’s the end of an era for us. The past six years have seen high school productions too numerous to mention. I have built some of the oddest things in an effort to make these plays look professional on a shoestring budget: A revolving 24 foot by 36 foot structure that ripped the curtain and nearly fell into the front row, prison cells out of PVC, and a toilet stall that doubled as a judges bench when viewed from the other side. But now we are officially finished with high school theatre because our final actress has kissed the stage.

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Her name is Kendall but her little toddler friend called her Cookie and it stuck. Cookie amazes me. She is a fighter, she is introspective, beautiful, bright, creative, and fiercely loyal. Cookie is an extremely hard worker and I have no doubt she will be successful at whatever she chooses because she will either kick down the obstacles or figure out an ingenious way to ignite them. One of my fondest memories is when mom picked her up on first day of first grade. She bounded out of her classroom and suddenly realized something had gone terribly wrong. She grabbed the doorway to stop her momentum and cried, “Wait! They forgot to teach me how to read!” Read More

The Unrelenting Butt-Itch

The List goes on.

Unending…Daunting…Disheartening

Until I reach a breaking point…

My dismal attempt at poetry? No, just my mind reeling after I read an email this morning. It is build weekend for our high school thespians and once again, I didn’t see everyone else take a step backwards when they asked for a volunteer to lead the charge. Actually, I love being around the kids (who call me PartyMark) and having a small part in the production. This is my fifth build and we’ve done some incredible shows.

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Legally Blonde
Moon Over Buffalo
Moon Over Buffalo
Little Women
Little Women

The problem is that when I’m meeting with the director about the task at hand, she shows me the large pieces and that’s where my mind stops. She keeps telling me about the other things they will need and I hear Charlie Brown’s teacher, “wapwapwa-wa!” So after finishing the three big pieces yesterday and feeling quite smug in the accomplishment, I got an email with a 20 item list of things to do today. TWENTY! I nearly lost it and decided to do what I always do when I get stressed, go for a run.

When my toasty skin hit the cool air outside, I got a mild skin irritation in an unfortunate location. I figured it would go away, but it didn’t. At the top of my street, I was so distracted with it that I turned right toward the hilly 6-mile course instead of left to the flat 4. The sun rose above the tree line in front of me as I scratched. At first I tried to be discreet and wait for times when there were no cars around. But after a couple of miles, I quit caring. The unrelenting butt-itch won – for the moment.

At about mile four, something funny happened. I guess I didn’t hit my usual run playlist and some songs from the shows the girls have done streamed through my earbuds. They weren’t the best running songs, but they took my mind off the butt-itch and made me focus more on why I’m doing the building than the list. For me, it’s about the kids, specifically my daughters.

We all have lists. Sometimes they are unrelenting butt-itches that won’t seem to go away. I have to remember why I have the list and be grateful that I have the wherewithal to accomplish it. I keep up with Caringbridge posts from a friend who is watching her husband struggle with a brain tumor. He would love to have my list. I take my health for granted too often.

Today, I’m going to go to church, worship well, then hammer out 20 things – one at a time.

How are you going to attack your list?