From the land of misfit toys

The crazies are the ones that change the world. ūüôčūüŹľ

Land of Misfit Toys

So thankful for a much needed holiday break from digital connectivity to spend a few days connecting with real people. Faith, family, food and football are at the top of the list this week (not that they aren’t always).

Knowing the email was stacking up, I snuck into the office for a bit to keep the snowball at a reasonable size. Amidst the post-Christmas sales assault was a post from my friend Tony Howell that caused me to settle into my chair instead of slipping away to my own post-Christmas ping-pong assault on daughter #2.

Nestled in his blog post¬†“2017: Make History” is a quote from creative behemoth Apple, Inc. in their 1997 advertising campaign “Think different.”

‚ÄúHere‚Äôs to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They‚Äôre not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can‚Äôt do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.‚ÄĚ

Read it again. Relate? Me too.

Ignorance is bliss.

Growing up I was a little different. Being¬†blessed with an extremely stable family to¬†tether me and provide¬†unshakeable¬†security,¬†I¬†enjoyed¬†a personal….or¬†personality¬†freedom that made growing up a blast. Examples (and these were all done in my single-digit years):

  • First solo performance in church at age 2
  • Created and DJ’d a radio station (aka mix-tape) with weather, news and the best¬†hits from Elvis, Alabama and¬†the¬†Sesame Street sing-a-long.
  • Sang¬†Michael Jackson’s¬†“Beat It”¬†for my 4th grade talent show accompanied by¬†myself on the guitar
  • Grew up on a farm with no neighbors, so found an imaginary friend in the woods
  • Wrote a rap song about RV-ing in Arkansas:¬†“We Be Camping”¬†(still sung by extended family 25¬†years later)
  • Best recess football wide receiver on the Bel Air Elementary campus
  • Set¬†record for most consecutive performances¬†of¬†“Elvira”¬†for dinner guests
  • Was a straight-A student with perfect attendance
  • Wore a¬†Dallas Cowboy¬†football uniform every chance I¬†got
  • Designed the cover of our school yearbook
  • Hated wearing dresses or anything that looked like a girl
  • Wrote a song for my mother for Mother’s Day

As you can see, I was a little artsy-fartsy and had some possible gender-identity issues but was ultimately secure in all of it. Looking back, I sometimes wonder what on earth my parents were thinking letting me do some of the things I did. As strict as they were with values, attitude, character and performance, they were very free with personality and expression. And I am so thankful for that.

Reality is torture.

Then comes adolescence and the journey to adulthood. The wild imagination and freedom of self expression surrenders to the practicality of maturity. The restrictions¬†of conformity in¬†middle school. The pressure academically in high school. The stakes¬†of the future¬†in college. The compromises¬†of identity in early marriage and the sacrifices of time in parenthood. It’s the real world baby. And bit by bit¬†that real world was covering me, layer by layer, with a mask that didn’t resemble much of who I really was.

Because you’re a musical theatre person reading this, most likely you will relate or even have the same story I have. So please forgive me for writing the overused¬†following statement….

And then I saw Wicked. 

You may have seen that coming. But that green girl personified my life on stage. And since you know the story, I don’t have to draw the parallels. You already feel them. And my life changed. From that moment. The facade cracked and my heart started beating at 100% again. The world looked new and exciting and even more‚ÄĒI looked new and exciting.¬†

Crazies unite!

I was still married, still a mom to three beautiful children, still the owner of a thriving design studio. But something was unleashed within me that day.¬†Don’t worry, no lyrics inserted here…you’re already thinking them ūüėȬ†The dreams I had to be more, to do more, to express new and imaginative things, to be a pioneer not a settler, to reach for the stars, to¬†do¬†and not¬†try, do let my crazy loose, to challenge the status quo, to ask the hard questions, to challenge the tradition, to seek the truth, to¬†chase the lion¬†and to inspire others to do the same were set on fire. Newsflash‚ÄĒIt was OK to be me‚ÄĒALL of me! Black sheep (or green) as I may be….that’s how my Creator made me and the only way to feel fulfilled was to be honest with who I am and authentic in all I do.

Now I’m still a wife, mom, and designer with the same amazing guy, three beautiful children, and growing¬†marketing firm, but I’m proud to say¬†they all would claim that¬†I’ve changed. I’m letting my misfit side manifest and life is certainly more fun and fulfilling. I don’t mind showing the boys up at the family skeet shoot. You’ll catch me standing on the coffee table with a broom belting a ballad quite often. My daughters’ friends think I’m cool because I take tap lessons. And I’m experiencing performance, writing and directing opportunities that would blow my mind 20 years ago.¬†I’ve found my personality home in musical theatre and while it’s a tough industry in a lot of¬†areas, creatively it is the most fulfilling place for me to be.

Don’t forget:

The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.

I’m working on changing the world. Feeling crazy? Join me.

And go Cowboys!¬†ūüíô

Question: I’m guessing there was a show that changed your life…which one? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

Get the Callback: The Art of Auditioning for Musical Theatre

Get the Callback

All great auditions require preparation and practice, but what’s the secret to securing a callback? What are the best ways to prepare for that pivotal moment? And once you’re in front of the casting director, what does it take to make the most out of your moment in the spotlight?

In this second edition of Get the Callback: The Art of Auditioning for Musical Theatre, Jonathan Flom provides practical advice on the many facets of preparation, including selection of songs and monologues to suit your voice and the audition, organizing and arranging your music, working with the accompanist, and presenting yourself to the casting team. The book gives a detailed description of the actual audition performance and even offers advice on how non-dancers can survive a dance audition.

In addition to extensively revised chapters on the audition process and how to build a repertoire book, this guide also features updated chapters on headshots, resumes, and cover letters; voice training techniques from Matthew Edward; advice from musical director Joey Chancey; and a foreword by casting director Joy Dewing. Aimed at professionals as well as young artists, this second edition of Get the Callback is a must-have for both seasoned and aspiring musical theatre performers.


    Life Change, Growth & Fiddle Fig Trees

    Major life change can turn¬†life on its head. But hang in there. There’s hope.

    I have a fiddle leaf fig plant in my house. It’s a favorite thing for me because in the 3 years I’ve had it, it has quadrupled in size compared to the one my sister got at the same time. Competitive much?

    This morning as I waited for my frozen waffles to bake, I walked over to my back window to absorb¬†some rolling countryside¬†goodness. I was burdened with the¬†heaviness that is currently weighing down my oldest daughter because of a major life change‚ÄĒour family moving¬†during her senior year of high school. Cruel and unusual, huh (did not win Mom-of-the-Year this year). As the toaster bell rung, I sighed in bittersweet faith and turned back to the kitchen. My once-majestic houseplant caught my eye and began narrating a story of our life through the eyes of a fiddle leaf fig. Stay with me.

    Four weeks ago we moved from a large, affluent, metropolitan area to a spot of land in the country two hours and 200,000 people away. Internet service is sparse but morning and evening skies are glorious. The ins and outs of that decision aren’t necessary, but like any move, the uprooting from life-as-we-know-it (especially with two teenaged girls) has been a journey into the dark night of the soul.

    woman looking out window thinking about growth, life change and hope


    Resume Design Services now offers resume design services! For more information click here.