Thursday, August 30, 2012

Shop talk

It's "Show us what you make/sell" day over at Kelly's blog, so I figured I'd do a quick shop update and link up! I have some new goodies to show you, so let's get to it! (And if you landed over here from over there, then WELCOME! I have an etsy shop where I sell hair accessories, pillow covers, notecards, pennant banners, and Christmas stockings, as well as plenty of houndstooth/crimson goodies for my fellow Tide fans. You can see the items I currently have listed by clicking HERE.)

First off, I'm loving these hair accessories I made out of Matilda Jane garment bags! Each piece of clothing comes in a cute mesh bag, so I figured I'd try my hand at putting them to good use-

I currently have 10 different styles on a variety of hair clips and stretchy headbands. My model prefers the headbands-

Football season officially kicks off TOMORROW, so I'd thought I'd do a little collage of Roll Tide goodies I have on hand-
and a little something for the Auburn fans...
 Here's a few other items I have on hand (some are listed in the shop and some are custom pieces. If you have questions or would like to place a custom order, you can email me at funnygirl33180(at)aol(dot)com. And yes, I'm one of the last humans on earth to still have an aol account.)
Mini flower clips- $3

set of 6 notecards- $5

need an accessory to match a certain outfit? I do custom orders...

 The mini-cluster headband (above) also comes in 6 other colors...

I also make custom sashes for parties, showers, graduations, and Thursdays.
This is my seester who will soon be "Mrs. Clark"in the sash I made for her Bachelorette Weekend.

If you have any hair accessory, or sofa accessory, or mantel accessory needs, or perhaps you need monogrammed notecards, or a houndstooth clip for your lapel, then I'm your gal. Feel free to browse my shop & happy Friday!

Randoms, because that's all I seem to have time for

Well, it happened again.
I wrote out a blog schedule with a topic for each day of this week and even managed to take a few of the photos I'd need.

And then I lived my life and didn't have time for any of it.
And that's ok.

So tonight, after cleaning the kitchen and putting away the dishes, and tucking 3 kiddos into bed, and finishing a custom order, and making one heckuva good cup of hot tea, I have time to write. And it seems I'm not quite in the mood for anything I'd planned to write about, so I've got a few randoms for ya:

1. While driving home from rehearsal Tuesday night, I was playing with the buttons on the back of the steering wheel that control the volume of the radio. So nice of those Chrysler folks to think of what drivers truly want in a vehicle, like a way to turn down the volume of the Veggie Tales cd so you can yell at your kids sweetly remind your children to be nice to one another without even having to move your hand from the steering wheel. I knew the button on the right side was volume, and the one on the left would allow you to skip through tracks on a cd, but what would it do if you weren't listening to a cd? I was intrigued. So I tried it. And you know what?  After driving the swagger wagon for over 10 months, I discovered that the button on the left side of the back of the steering wheel, when pushed up or down when a cd is NOT playing, will scroll through cd/am & fm radio/aux and will also play SATELLITE RADIO.


There's an all 50's channel, all 60's, all 70's...
There's a Jimmy Buffet channel.
There's an Elvis channel.
There's an LA area traffic channel, as well as several Canadian sports channels, and quite a few channels in languages I don't understand.

I was mesmerized.
And shocked.

To think of all the Jimmy Buffet I've been missing...

And yet, as I looked at the dashboard and wondered why there wasn't a 'satelite radio' button, I realized there actually was.

I'd just never pushed it.

2. While cooking dinner last night, (and by cooking, I mean ripping open a bag of frozen pasta & veggies and tossing them into a hot pan) I went to retrieve a measuring cup. As I filled my 2/3 measuring cup with water, it dawned on me that I was still using the same 2/3 measuring cup I had in college. From a set I purchased at the Dollar Tree. In the year 2001, A.D.

And it's 2012.

Not to say that anything is wrong with the measuring cups. No, not a thing. They're black, and plastic, and they do their job of helping me to occasionally get domestic in my kitchen. But they were one of those items that got tossed into my green shopping basket in the Dollar Tree because measuring cups are one of those things on every girls list of college necessessities. You just need to have them so the drawers of your college apartment's kitchen won't be empty. Having been married for several years now, and having birthed 3 babes, and having a mortgage and whatnot, I feel I've earned the right to a nicer set of measuring cups. When I find the perfect ones, I'll let you know.

3. Sometime between drying my hair and making my coffee this morning, this happened:

Now, I'm not one to point fingers, but I do happen to know that only one other person in my house was awake at the time so I'm gonna go ahead and blame my new home screen background on the 7 year-old I live with.

4. We passed 3 of these as we entered school this morning...

Does it get more random than that?

Friday, August 24, 2012

Flashback Friday

With the start of a new school year and a new 2nd grader at our house, I started thinking back to my days in 2nd grade, and it hit me. This was the year something significant happened to me, and no I'm not just talking about getting in trouble for talking too much in class and having to sit out in the hallway as punishment.

I'm talking about glasses.

You see, when 2nd grade began, I was already well aware that I couldn't see a darn thing on the chalkboard in the front of the classroom, and it didn't matter where I was sitting. I could stand directly in front of words and it just looked like a messy blob of chalk. I guess it embarrassed me that I had problems with being able to see, because instead of telling anyone about it, I snuck binoculars to school in my backpack. Yup. Sho did. I'd pull them out discreetly in class, take a quick look at the board, and read enough of whatever it was that I was supposed to read to get by.

Those of you who went to public school know that not too far into the school year, these nice ladies would come around with their giant machines and we'd get out of class for a little thing called 'vision screening', and it was on one of these days, in the 2nd grade, that it was finally determined that my eyesight was completely and totally pitiful.

This is a 2nd grade MK, pre-vision screening-

(It even looks like I'm having trouble focusing on whoever was taking the picture. Or maybe my awesome popsicle stick art was weighing my head down.)

and this is a 2nd grade MK, post-vision screening-

Bless my heart.
And those massive frames.
And those turquoise sweatpants.
That don't match my sweatshirt.
And one of the most valuable Barbie's I've ever had that I TOOK OUT OF THE BOX, thus diminishing her value.
But I was 8, and when you're 8, only crazy people leave Barbie's in a box.

Fast-forward to spring-

I replaced the Barbie with a kitten.
And the red bow with a white one.
Shout-out to Maxwell Elementary.
I wish I knew where that t-shirt was...

And here's proof that all I did in this year of my life, besides get massive glasses, was pose for pictures with stuff in my hands.

So, to my brandspankin' new 2nd grader, I say this:

Have fun,
be kind,
learn lots,

and if you can't see a bloomin' thing,
tell us.
For goodness sakes.

Thanks, hubs, for snapping our pic as we headed to school on Monday.

Here's a pre-bathroom trip pic of him with his new teacher, and a post-bathroom trip pic.

What a difference a trip to the loo can make, am I right?

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Things I learned on the first day of school

The first day back to work/school did such a number on me that I'm just getting around to posting this on the THIRD day of school.


1. After looking forward to going back to school all summer, and after waking up super duper early, getting dressed, and throwing down his breakfast, my brandspankin' new 2nd grader will develop intense stomach cramps on the way to school and be in tears by the time we reach his classroom. Nervous gas? Anxious about a new classroom and new group of classmates? Who knows. By lunchtime and an extended trip to the loo, all will be well after an almost disastrous non-existent-because-we-had-to-go-home first day.

2. Kindergartners are crazy excited and wild on the first day of school. This was true of my child, and certainly true of the new crop of K students I've met this week. Their enthusiasm is infectious though, and I can't help but to be excited when I have a new class in my music room. Doesn't want to make me run around and jump off of the risers as some of them have done, but it helps to see their sweet smiles as I say, "sit on your bottoms, please" for the fifteenth time.

3. The mere mention of 'instruments' to a primary student causes excitement akin to that of the mention of 'Bieber' to a middle school student.

4. After typing a set of song lyrics in 45 seconds flat, it will take 2.5 hours to print them because my computer has forgotten how to recognize the printer it's connected to over the summer. I will have to un-install it, search in my desk drawer for the installation cd, re-install it, and after 2.5 hours, the blessed lyrics will finally print.

5. After staying at school an extra 2.5 hours, I will get stuck in 5 o'clock traffic going home. The trip will take a total of 30 minutes, giving me exactly 25 minutes at home with my family before I have to hop in my car and drive to rehearsal. It's days like this that make me glad I actually love the jobs that I do. I miss my family like crazy, but I love my jobs.

6. Really cute wedges will look great with your first-day-of-school dress, but will in fact make your feet want to kill you after standing in them for 9 hours. Never again shall I wear the cute wooden wedges to school. Never again.

7. After collapsing on the couch next to hubs at the end of an exhausting day, I will NOT be too tired to watch the next to last episode of the 3rd season of Breaking Bad. It also turns out that I will, in fact, not be too tired to watch the last episode of the 3rd season of Breaking Bad because Netflix is just too darn convenient. And SHEESH, what a season finale. Good gravy. I can't even...

8. After an 11.5 hour workday and two episodes of Breaking Bad, I will feel like I've been hit with a 2 x 4 on my second day of school. I know I couldn't have learned this on the 'first' day as the title says, but it's now the 'third' day. Now I know.

9. Saturdays during the school year will be known at the Mathews' house as the 'Day of Sleep'.

Monday, August 20, 2012

2nd grade

Hello, my name is Mary Kathryn and I have a 2nd grader.

It's back to school time for me and O today. If you're a teacher/work in a school, or if you have kiddos who are off to school today, I hope the first day of the '12-'13 year ROCKS.

p.s.- first day of first grade pics HERE as well as info on where I got the snazzy printable he's holding.

Happy Monday, friends!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Flashback Friday

Happy Friday to ya! Before I get to today's flashback, I must first state to the blogoshpere, and to the universe, that I am currently wearing a pair of white jeans that haven't seen the light of day in 6, yes SIX years because the faculty at my school is taking our annual photo today in black shirts and white jeans. I assumed that since I haven't purchased white jeans since Justin Beiber was still you-tubing that perhaps I'd have to stand in the back in a pair of khakis, which I was fine with. However, I knew I'd kept these babies around in the chance that someday I could shed those 70+ pregnancy pounds and once again flit about in a pair of white pants.

All of the pounds have definitely not been shed, but these things are on me and zipped with only minimal muffin toppage, so get ready.

I'm about to flit about.

In white jeans.

Moving on.

Today's flashback Friday post is a look back at the first time I had the privilege to do Into the Woods. The year was 1995 and I played Cinderella. My director was Linda Bonds (shout out to ya, Mrs. B, if you happen to be reading!) and I was a sophomore in high school. I loved this show. Correction, I still love this show. I was also heavily into traditional scrapbooking at the time, so without further adieu, I give you a glimpse into MK's scrapbook, circa 1996.

If you attended Hillcrest between the years of 1995-2011? then you're well aware that the Milky White from this production went on to roles in every single theatrical production after this one. Not quite sure when he stopped making appearances, which is why I have a question mark next to the year, but he's famous. Totally famous. And this was his first show.

Yes, I cut out a pic of Jack and stuck him in a beanstalk.

Yes, I totally cut those trees out by hand.

I also cut the letters by hand since this is pre-cricut invention.

Isotoner house shoes and a black Ironman watch.

School begins for us on Monday and rehearsals for Into the Woods, Jr have been underway for a week now. Good-bye Summer, hello crazy busy hectic Fall schedule. I hope that all of you had an awesomely wonderful week and that you have a fabulous start to the school year. If you're already IN school, then I hope it's going swimmingly!

Don't forget- my trunk show is tomorrow for the new line of Matilda Jane. If you'd like to see the goods in person, my trunk keeper will be here from 2-4, and if you're not local but would like to place an order, you can e-mail me at funnygirl33180(at)aol(dot)com. You can view the first release of this collection online now, and here are a few of my faves-

Monday, August 13, 2012

Into the Woods, Jr. cast list

I can honestly say that I've never before had such a difficult time casting a show. Each of the 65 young adults/children who auditioned were incredibly talented and I only wish that I had 65 roles to hand out. Below is a final cast list, and please be aware that the first parent mtg and read-through of the script is tonight at 6:00 pm at University Church of Christ.

Narrator Andrew Burdette
Jack Alex Freeman
Baker Matthew Dunkin
Cinderella Brittany Johnson
Little Red Kenleigh Benoit
Granny Victoria Camp
Cinderella’s Stepmother Gracie Avery
Florinda Katelyn Lipscomb
Lucinda Mackenzie Johnson
Cinderella’s Mother Kelsey Bruce
Wolf Andrew Livingston
Rapunzel Ashley Alexander Lee
Cinderella’s PrinceAndrew Livingston
Rapunzel’s Prince Landon Turner
Milky White Emma Claire Patton
Milky White Eva Miller
Witch Kynnedi Porter
Jack’s Mother Alexandra Smith
Mysterious ManDustin Gomez
Steward Jake Williams
Baker’s Wife Hannah Heinrich

I look forward to working with each one of you- see you soon!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

little hands

It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon. We'd just left church and were headed to my grandmother's house to eat lunch. Seester came out of the house to meet us as I unloaded kiddos. MM was wearing a new pair of shoes, and as any girly-girl would be, she was proud and excited to show them off.  As I put her down in front of me, she went to point her toe. To keep her balance, she reached over and put her hand on the van just as the automatic "magic door" closed and latched. On her little hand and fingers. Standing right behind her, I saw it all happen in slow motion and couldn't seem to get the door open fast enough. When the door opened, I held a sweet little hand that was mangled and black with grease. Some of the skin had been pinched and was pulling off. She cried. I cried. My first thought was that surely something had been broken. I immediately picked her up and put her right back into her carseat so I could zoom to an emergi-care, but when I did so, I started pleading with her to wiggle her fingers. Please Mary Martin, please wiggle your fingers. I know it hurts, but please try. Show Mommy that you can do it. Any of them. Just wiggle. Please, baby. Of course, the whole time I was pleading with her, I was also pleading with God that she could move them. Please let nothing be broken.

It seemed to take forever, but after what was probably only 2-3 minutes, she began to move her hand. And wiggle a finger. And then another.

I took her inside where seester had made an icepack and held it on her hand until she calmed down. What had seemed so grim only moments before was now clearly not so bad.

Fast-forward to last night.

We were eating dinner with my in-laws, and I recounted the story of the smooshed hand and fingers and we looked at sweet little MM's hand, and ya know what? We couldn't find a trace of 'hurt'. Not a bit. I couldn't even see the spots where the skin had been pulled off just two days earlier. Nothing. Only a little toddler who was wondering why I was holding her hand and keeping her from eating.

And then it hit me.

God removes our scars. Just like that. If we ask him to heal a hurt, emotionally, He can do it. In fact, He's all about the business of healing hurts.

Did you know that?

He's totally laid it on my heart today to share this with you, and he used my baby girl's hands to make it clear to me. He can heal your hurt. He can remove your scars. Whatever may have happened in the past, however awful it may have been, He'll hold your hand and get you through it. He's waiting for you to reach out and call on Him. He wants to help. He's there.

He's always there.

He can wipe away tears. He can dissolve scars. He can remove hurt.

He can.

And He will.

He can even get you to a place in your life where you won't be able to remember the awfulness. The memories may still be there, but God brings peace so full and abundant that it covers hurt.

Maybe some of you are hurting. Maybe you have scars. Maybe God is leading me to type this just for you.

Do you know Him?

"He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever." Rev 21:4

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Character Counts

I have to start things off today by stating that this happens to be the 400th blog post I've written. That seems like craziness, but it's true. Thank you for reading and for laughing at with me, and for telling me you can relate to my silly stories about poo, and thank you for holding my hand and telling me it would be okay if I did, in fact, end up buying a mini van. Thank you.

And now, to what this post is really about- Character Counts.

Matilda Jane's Fall collection will be available (on the website) on the 15th of August, and the entire collection will be AT MY HOUSE for you to pick up and look at and try on your little gal or yourself on the 18th of August. (The original date I posted last week had to be changed because of open house at my school) If you're new to Matilda Jane Clothing, it's a line of uber-fabulous clothes that comes in sizes 6 month-12 tween for girls and in S, M, and L for adults. You can see lots of fab pics and listen to me gush about it HERE  and HERE. You can also look at past collections on their website HERE.

**BIG HUGE GIGANTIC ANNOUNCEMENT** I'll be giving away a FREE custom hair accessory (headband or clip) with every purchase. I'll customize it to match the new collection, OR I'll customize a piece to match something you or your child/grandchild already have in their closet. Sound good? Awesome.

Since you can't even view the Fall collection online yet, I thought I'd gather all of the sneak peak photos MJC has posted so far and put them here. Together. For your viewing pleasure.

Here's an invite for ALL of you out there in blogland- if you're local, I'd love for you to come and take a look at the clothes yourself! If you live in a kingdom far, far away, you can shop online and place an order with my trunk keeper.

 You can contact me through a comment on this post, or by e-mailing me at Funnygirl33180(at)aol(dot)com. **I'll honor the freebie hair accessory no matter where you are! I'll even ship to you for free if you place an order from the trunk show and you're not local!**

Monday, August 6, 2012

Into the Woods

Howdy y'all! Today's post is all about the next show I'll be directing and will hopefully answer some questions for those planning to audition later this week. If you're not local, or if you don't give a hoot about musical theatre, today's post probably won't be of any interest to you. However, if you'd like to learn about the super-cool Sondheim musical, Into the Woods, Jr,  or if you're at all interested in knowing what's required at a TCT audition, then stick around. Lots of info coming at ya today...

Into the Woods is a musical written by the brilliant Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine. While the entire musical is beautifully written from start to finish, the second act explores darker story lines which are not completely suited for an audience full of elementary students. Tuscaloosa Children's Theatre will be performing Into the Woods, Jr. which is almost the entire first act of the original. All of the characters find what they think will bring them happiness and it's all wrapped up into a nice and tidy 'Happily ever after" package when the curtain closes at the end. So, who are the characters? I'm so glad you asked.

Into the Woods actually incorporates several different fairy tale characters and reveals what happens when they meet each other 'in the woods'. This is where I'd usually just post a link to the synopsis on MTI's website HERE, but I thought I'd also copy and paste it HERE---->

We discover three dwellings in a large forest. In one, we see Cinderella cleaning; in the second, we see Jack trying to milk his pathetic-looking cow, Milky-White; and in the third, we see the Baker and the Baker's Wife preparing tomorrow’s bread.

The Narrator leads the company through "The Prologue" as we learn about a series of wishes that are more important than anything – even life itself – to these characters. Cinderella wants to go to the King’s Festival; Jack wishes his cow could give milk; and the Baker (who believes his parents were killed in a baking accident) wishes he and his Wife could have a child. As these characters express their wishes, we meet Cinderella's Stepmother and Stepsisters who laugh at the idea of her going to a ball; Jack's mother who wishes for a lot of gold and a less foolish son; and Little Red Ridinghood, who comes to buy bread, sticky buns and pies from the Baker and his Wife before starting her journey into the woods to see her sick Grandmother.

We learn Jack's cow (whom Jack foolishly persists in referring to as "he") is no longer giving milk. Jack's Mother says he must sell the cow so they can survive. He is crushed because he thinks the cow is his best friend, but sets off to the market to sell it. Leaving Cinderella in tears, her family rides off to the ball without her.

The Baker and his Wife learn the ugly Witch next door, has placed a curse on them to prevent their having a child. She explains the Baker's father had stolen various vegetables from her garden many years ago to satisfy his wife's insatiable desire for greens. He also stole the Witch’s magic beans. To punish him for the theft, she demanded and had been given the Baker's sister, a sibling the Baker never knew existed. She claims she still has the Baker's sister hidden away and that he can break the spell that makes him childless only by bringing her a cow as white as milk, a cape as red as blood, hair as yellow as corn and a slipper as pure as gold.

The Baker puts on his father's old jacket as he prepares to journey into the woods. He finds six beans in the pockets and wonders if they are the Witch’s magic beans. He forbids his Wife to join him on this dangerous quest as he tries to memorize the list of things the Witch says he must deliver. As "The Prologue" ends, Cinderella decides to visit her mother’s grave.

At this point, the show takes on a rapid pace.

Cinderella tells her mother her wish and is given a fancy dress and slippers to wear to the ball. While walking through the woods to market, Jack encounters a Mysterious Man who tells Jack his cow is only worth a sack of beans. Little Red Ridinghood meets a Wolf who targets her and her grandmother as his next meal. The Baker appears and is concerned harm will come to Little Red Ridinghood. The Witch warns him not to worry about the child’s welfare; his task is simply to steal her cape. We hear the sound of a woman singing in the distance; it is the voice of the Baker's lost sister, Rapunzel.
As the Baker struggles to remember the four objects on his list, his Wife appears, with another offer to help him. They argue about her presence as they encounter Jack and his cow, a beast like the one the Witch has demanded. The Baker's Wife persuades Jack to sell the cow for five of their beans (which leaves them with one remaining bean). After Jack sings a sad farewell to the cow ("I Guess This Is Goodbye") the Baker is upset they used deceit to acquire the animal. The Baker’s Wife insists they did Jack a favor. ("Maybe They're Magic"). She says you have to go after what you want and not hesitate. The Baker sends his wife home with the cow and continues on his way, as Rapunzel sings again.

The Witch visits Rapunzel at the tower where she is kept prisoner. A handsome prince sees the Witch climb Rapunzel’s hair and decides to try it himself the following day.

The Baker makes an unsuccessful try at stealing Little Red Ridinghood's cape – thievery does not come naturally to him. Little Red Ridinghood enters her Grandmother’s house to find theWolf, in bed, pretending to be the old woman (whom he has eaten). After the Wolf eats Little Red Ridinghood, he takes a nap. The Baker sees a corner of the red cloak hanging out of the Wolf's mouth and hoping to get the whole thing cuts his stomach open, releasing Little Red Ridinghood and her Grandmother. After the ordeal, Little Red Ridinghood realizes that "I Know Things Now." Grateful to the Baker for saving her life, Little Red Ridinghood gives him her cloak.

Jack's Mother is furious with him for selling their cow for five seemingly worthless beans and she throws them away. The Baker’s Wife, leading Milky-White through the forest, encounters Cinderella, who is running from the Prince (the brother, coincidentally, of the prince who is smitten with Rapunzel) and his Steward. When Cinderella reveals she isn’t sure she wants the Prince, the Baker’s Wife thinks she is being very foolish ("Very Nice Prince"). The Baker’s Wife tries to take one of Cinderella’s gold shoes, but is forced to chase after the runaway cow instead.

The next morning the characters realize one midnight has gong and they have not realized their wishes. Jack discovers a beanstalk has grown up overnight.

As the Baker sleeps beneath a tree, Jack appears with an oversized money sack. He sings about "Giants In The Sky" and relates his adventure. He describes the sensation of being high in the sky and meeting a lady giant. The appearance of her husband, an even bigger giant who intended to harm him, sent him scrambling back to earth with one of the giant's sacks of gold. Jack's Mother, delighted by his acquisition, has let him keep five gold pieces which he wants to use to buy back Milky-White. He finds the Baker and demands his cow. The Baker cannot sell the cow because the Witch wants it. Jack, thinking the Baker is holding out for more money, goes off in search of additional funds, leaving the gold with the Baker. The Baker’s Wife appears, confessing she has lost the cow.
Rapunzel's Prince and Cinderella's Prince exchange tales of woe ("Agony") each insisting his romantic problem is more serious than his brother's.

The Baker's Wife, who is searching for the hair as yellow as corn, encounters Jack's Mother, who is looking for Jack. The Mysterious Man returns the cow to the Baker. The Witch warns the Mysterious Man to stay out of her business. The Baker’s Wife, recognizing Rapunzel's hair as the perfect shade to satisfy the Witch's hair demand, grabs one of the girl's substantial tresses, rips it out, and runs into Cinderella, who is on her way home from another night at the Festival. The Baker's Wife tries, without success, to take Cinderella's shoe. The Baker and his Wife run into each other and he finally agrees it will take both of them to accomplish their goal ("It Takes Two").

Jack appears with the hen that lays golden eggs. The Baker's Wife realizes the Baker has considered selling the cow for money. The cow drops dead and all seems lost for the Baker and his Wife. Two midnights are gone.

The Baker goes in search of another cow. The Baker's Wife goes off to try again to grab a golden slipper. The Witch warns Rapunzel to obey her ("Stay With Me") and to remain shielded from the world. Rapunzel says she is not longer a child and wants to see the world. Infuriated, the Witch cuts off most of Rapunzel's hair and exiles her. The Narrator reveals while pursuing Rapunzel, Rapunzel's Prince has fallen into a patch of thorns and blinded himself.

Leaving her third visit to the royal ball wit only one slipper, Cinderella reflects on her indecision about leaving her miserable home for the unknown aspects of life with the Prince ("On The Steps Of The Palace"). She decides not to decide. She has left a shoe for the Prince to find and it will be his decision.

The Baker's Wife gives Cinderella her own shoes in exchange for the remaining gold slipper. She then has a struggle with the Prince's Steward who also wants the second gold slipper. The Mysterious Man becomes involved in the struggle. The Prince decides they only need on shoe. There is a horrible thud. Jack's Mother screams that a dead giant has fallen from the sky. No one seems to care. The third midnight is near.

The Baker and his Wife report to the Witch with their four objects, but she rejects the new cow, which they have covered with flour to look like the dead Milky-White. The Witch demands they bring the dead Milky-White to her and she’ll bring it back to life.

Jack appears with a golden harp. The Witch restores Milky-White to life and commands the Baker to feed the cow the other objects. A clock chime begins to strike. The Witch insists the cow be milked to fill a silver goblet. Jack tries, but no milk flows. When the Baker's Wife says she pulled the hair as yellow as corn from a maiden in the tower, the Witch explains she, the Witch, cannot have touched any of the objects needed to break the spell. The Mysterious Man says to feed the cow an ear of corn. The Witch reveals the Mysterious Man is the Baker’s father. The cow eats the corn; the milk flows into the goblet and the Witch drinks it. She is transformed into a beautiful woman and the Baker’s father dies as the third midnight strikes.

The Narrator explains the Witch had been cursed with ugliness after her beans were stolen, but is now beautiful once again. Milky-White is reunited with Jack. The Prince searches for Cinderella with the golden slipper. Lucinda and Florinda try to fit into the slipper by cutting off parts of their feet, but their tricks are discovered and the Prince finally finds Cinderella.

The Narrator states Rapunzel, has been reunited with her blind prince and Rapunzel's tears restored his vision. The Witch attempts reconciliation with her adopted daughter, but Rapunzel refuses. When the Witch tries to enchant Rapunzel and her prince, she realizes that in exchange for her own youth and beauty, she has lost her magical power over others.

The Baker's Wife, who appears, very pregnant, greets Cinderella. The Narrator observes that everything, which seemed wrong, is now right. The kingdoms are filled with joy and those who deserve happiness are certain to live long and satisfying lives. Only tenderness and laughter are foreseen forever after. In the finale we are reminded there will be times when each of us must journey into the woods but that we must mind the future and the past.

The show ends as Cinderella says, "I wish…"

The MUSIC is really what I'd love to share with all of you because, well, quite's brilliant. I know I've already used that adjective in this post, but it just is. The story and lyrics and melodies work so beautifully together that even if you only hear it once, it will totally stay with you.  Know what I mean? The same link I posted above also has excerpts of some of the musical numbers so you can take a listen if you so desire. Don't wanna scroll back up? Just click HERE.

How many roles are available?

I'm so glad you asked. While I'm used to directing shows with a cast of 80+, Into the Woods, Jr. has a cast of 20. That's it. Just 20. There is no 'chorus', there are no 'townspeople', there are no singing and dancing mice, but there is a Cinderella. Here's a list of roles available and a brief description of each character:

BAKER The Baker changes the most as a result of his journey through the woods. At first he is reluctant to seek the help of his wife. It is through the tribulations of gathering the Witch's items that the Baker realizes, in order to achieve his wish, it will take the help of his wife. The Baker has one of the most difficult roles. He must be strong willed, yet the audience must like him; while he's denying the help of his wife, he must also portray a sense of needing and even wanting her help. The audience should never doubt the Baker is a good-hearted person, trying to do what is right.
Ab3 - Eb5
BAKER'S WIFE Into the Woods JR. is truly an ensemble show. However, it is the Baker's Wife who drives the show forward and ties the characters together. The Baker's Wife is strong, determined, and patient. The audience should identify with her and root for a successful fulfillment of her wish. The role requires excellent singing and acting, plus a good sense of comic timing.
Bb3 - D5
CINDERELLA Cinderella is at once beautiful, in a yet-to-be-discovered sort of way, and surprisingly clumsy and awkward. She persistently pursues her wish to go to the King's Festival, yet finds that "the Festival" ultimately does not meet her expectations. Directors have an opportunity in casting Cinderella to go for the unusual. She should be able to sing well and be funny, without being a clown or mugging.
A3 - D5
CINDERELLA'S MOTHER This role is a one scene wonder. The voice should be pleasant. Cinderella's Mother is a collection of remembered mannerisms and sayings.
Bb3 - D5
CINDERELLA'S STEPMOTHER This family is a bit off-beat at best. Cinderella's Stepmother mocks her, represents the interests of her birth daughters over Cinderella's basic needs, and is selfish, mean, and nasty.
G3 - D5
FLORINDA and LUCINDA This family is a bit off-beat at best. Florinda and Lucinda are spoiled brats who will do anything to win the heart of the Prince -- even if it means sacrificing flesh from their bodies!
E4 - G4
GRANNY Good speaking voice, fiesty and fierce, may be doubled with CINDERELLA'S MOTHER
JACK Jack's own mother expresses her fear that Jack may not be the brightest boy. The fact that Jack's best friend is the family cow, Milky White, further brings into question his intelligence. However, Jack may enter the woods as a simple boy, but he leaves much more grown-up. You'll want to cast an actor capable of this transition. In addition to having many lines, Jack is responsible for singing two of the best-loved songs, "I Guess This is Goodbye" and "Giants in the Sky." Therefore, he should be an excellent singer and a good actor. Further, it helps to have a young man whose voice has not yet changed, although the score allows for a changed voice. This is a role that could conceivably be played by a young woman; however, you will want to make sure she plays it as a boy and doesn't change the intended gender of the character.
A3 - D5
JACK'S MOTHER This woman is overworked, a bit frazzled, and overwhelmed with the tasks of raising a young boy, running a farm, and making ends meet. Jack's Mother is described physically as "not quite pretty" and should be comfortable playing frumpy. This is mainly an acting role and therefore requires an actress with an easily projected, authoritative voice.
C4 - C5
LITTLE RED RIDINGHOOD Pushy, bratty, over-fed, and spoiled best describe this character at the opening of the show. Her journey teaches her some very important lessons regarding strangers and trust. Little Red must be able to be loud vocally (think Annie gone very bad) and an actress able to be all the above, and still draw the audience's sympathy.
Bb3 - C5
MILKY WHITE Good part for young child, moves well
MYSTERIOUS MAN This role is all that the name implies. The role may be doubled by the Narrator, as on Broadway, or may be played by a different actor.
NARRATOR This is the character who describes the action, but eventually gets involved...Generally, this role is doubled by the Mysterious Man.
G3 - B4
RAPUNZEL Rapunzel must stand up to her mother and eventually leave her for the world. The role requires an excellent high soprano voice.
C4 - A5
RAPUNZEL'S/CINDERELLA'S PRINCE Pompous, conceited, and self-absorbed are the best ways to describe these brothers. They should be able to carry themselves with confidence that defies the Richter scale. They also have a bit of sibling rivalry! Both should be good, solid singers.
Bb3 - Db5
STEWARD This servant to Cinderella's Prince is a nice featured role. A few lines, both sung and spoken, are a great place for an actor ready to gain some experience in an ensemble show.
C4 - D5
WITCH The Witch begins the show as ugly, old, extremely aggressive, sarcastic, and powerful. Ultimately, she sacrifices her power for beauty. The Witch should be mysterious and mischievous, and yet we learn that she is really only doing what she thought was best for her child. The Witch is perhaps the ultimate "character" role and should be played by an actress able to physically and vocally interpret the role.
Bb3 - C5
WOLF The Wolf can be played any number of ways. However, he should be properly slimy and a bit creepy. There is also no reason why the Wolf cannot be played by a young woman. This role may be doubled by one of the Princes.
C4 - C5

When are auditions and whatdo I/my child need if I/they would like to audition?

Auditions are August 9th & 10th from 5-8 pm at First Presbyterian Church in Downtown Tuscaloosa. A monologue lasting no longer than a minute and 16-24 bars of a song are required to audition. There is also an audition form (PDF available HERE) that can be filled out in advance and brought to auditions. **Please note that 3 copies are needed** Forms will also be available at auditions. If you will be out of town and unable to attend auditions in person, you may skype your audition on either night. All you need to do is contact me to set up an appointment.

The original Broadway production is available on DVD, and you can also purchase cd recordings of the original, revival, AND London casts. I have all three because I'm a geek like that. I highly recommend that you become familiar with the music if you are interested in a specific role. Callbacks will consist of reading and SINGING from the show.

I think that pretty much covers everything, but if you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to ask! And good gravy, can someone please tell me why my post is formatted like this? I can't for the life of me figure out how to change it....

ah well

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Stella and Dot

Happy Thursday friends! I wanted to let you know about a party I'm hosting tomorrow for my good friend, Kathryn, who is a brandspankin' new stylist for Stella and Dot. If you're not familiar with Stella and Dot, it's a fab jewelry line full of gorgeous pieces in a spectrum of price points. You can spend a little or a lot, it all depends on what you're looking for, and there are even pieces for the itty-bitty girls in our lives! Kathryn will bring all of her gorgeous pieces to my crib tomorrow (4-6), but you can also submit an order online by visiting this link:

Here are a few of my faves...

I also LOVE that every piece is delivered in its own beautiful box.
Cardboard on the outside, but pure loveliness on the inside.

I have two pieces of Stella and Dot jewelry and they are absolutely two of my fave pieces to wear. If you have any questions or would like to place an order, you can e-mail me at

Happy day to ya!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Highlands

Hello friends! I know, I know....long time, no blog. I took a much needed break while teaching theatre classes and trying to soak up these last few weeks of summer with my kiddos. What I want to share with you today has nothing to do with theatre or kiddos, however, but with a fun girls-only weekend getaway to celebrate my seester & her upcoming nuptials.

Last Thursday and Friday, seester and 10 of her closest friends traveled to the gorgeous resort town of Highlands, NC for a bachelorette party/weekend. If you're in the market for a vacation spot where you can relax amidst beautiful mountain scenery, do some shopping, eat at gourmet restaurants, and even hike if you so desire, then check out the Highlands for your next trip.

We were fortunate to be able to stay in a gorgeous house owned by the aunt of one of seester's friends.

Our weekend began with a Mexican dinner at one of the local eateries-

A couple of fellas at the bar sent over that massive drink with 11 straws.
NO, we did NOT drink it, but gave it to a few guys who were only too happy to take it off our hands after taking several pics with it of course...

After a scrumptious brunch Saturday morning (thank you Haley, Alison, & anyone else that contributed!), the back deck provided a perfect spot for the opening and displaying of gifts, and for playing a few games.

After the morning's festivities, we headed to town for some shopping and another bite to eat. Lots of eating going on during this trip folks. I think I brought 5 extra pounds back with me...

We even came upon a wedding party taking pics outside this quaint little church. It was even a First Presbyterian, which is where seester will tie the knot in t-town.

After heading back to the house, we all gussied ourselves up, complete with hair teasing...

and headed to a swanky eatery called On the Verandah. It's uppity, so it has a silent 'h', but the delicious eats warranted the uppity-ness. Of course I took a pic of my shrimp & scallops over spinach risotto because it was gone in about 5 minutes y'all.

So glad we took a group photo here of the whole gang-

If you started counting white jeans in that last pic, there were four...

Forgot to mention there was a bit more Chad-trivia for Mal before we headed out to dinner, complete with a festive pinata. Seester had to answer questions about Chad's homeland of Kentucky, and she actually did quite well. She got a swing at the pinata with each correct answer and there were Kentucky themed goodies inside.

Mal is incredibly blessed to have these girlfriends in her life. It was a wonderful weekend and I can't wait to see these gals again at future wedding festivities. A huge thanks goes to Alison and Haley for planning everything, and to Jami and Lynsey for driving & riding w/ me so I wouldn't get lost 8 times and miss the whole she-bang.

Here's one of my fave shots from the weekend of Jami and a one-armed Lynsey

See ya again soon, Ladies!

Quick reminder- my Stella & Dot trunk show with Kathryn Mouchette is Friday (Aug 3) from 4-6. Look for a post with more details tomorrow, and remember- even if you can't make it in person, you can still place an order. Yay for online shopping and pretty baubles! Just use this link to place your order-
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