Sunday, January 31, 2010

Castles in the Air

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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Migraine morning, AUCH!!! Though, I have to say, this is my first one in more than three months…

I had to drive to Morrow early afternoon. On my way back, since I was literally next door, I stopped at David’s Bridal. They are having their $99.00 wedding gown sale so I though I would see what they had.

I usually get the core dresses for Voices and Zaphyra there. When I say core I mean I use them as the basis for something I end up altering and adding to.

Anyway, the sale ends next Monday, so I made an appointment for Sunday at 4:30 pm. Grace and Gaby will be coming with me and we will also look at Made of Honor dresses for Gabs.

PS Matt says I am overboard with sparkly, fiery things in my brain tonight!...

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Well, I am pretty upset…I will not get into any details as I do not want to hurt anybody’s feelings as mine have been hurt. Second bump in the wedding planning road, but I guess that’s life…

I will just say again, I am pretty pissed!!!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

I had my first coaching in to months today. It was one of my best sessions to date. I love my sessions with Kathryn. But don’t be fooled, she works me to the bone! ;-) We worked on Rusalka’s Song to the Moon, which I will be singing in this year’s Voices concert, Mist of Night and Moon, and Porgi amor, which I will probably won’t do ‘till next year’s season which there is a big chance will be “All Love Can Be.”

So, after a major vocal workout, I decided to go to Ikea and peek around. I love my new Garmin navi. It comes in so handy especially for such a disoriented one like me…

At Ikea I indulged and had a cinnamon bun. Those things are so yummy! (and brought one home for my honey, of course!) I walked around the whole place, and got a couple of nice ideas for wedding favors. Then, had to make it back home for lessons.

I have to say that Camille gives me some great surprises every now and then. She takes what I teach her and runs ten miles down the road with it; talent and passion, what a great combination!

Later in the evening, I was reading the calendar that Jeanne gave me for Christmas, “Believing in Ourselves.” Each day has a wonderful thought to ponder on. Today’s was:

“Don’t punish yourself for what others have done to you.
You’re better than them. You’re better than you think.”
(Mia Tyler, Model and Writer)

The calendar has an additional thought in the back of the previous day’s page. This one was:

“If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost.
That is where they should be. Now put foundations under them.”
(Henry David Thoreau)

This made me think of a song a knew when I lived in Peru called “Castles in the Air” ( -- OK, it just came to me, another Voices concert themed around this concept. And I just added a new playlist to my iPod… -- anyway, back on the subject…The chorus, translated from Spanish, is:

And he built castles in the air
In the sun, with cotton clouds
In a place where no one can go
Using reason.

And he built fabulous windows
Filled with light, magic and color
And he summoned the elf of things
That has much to do with love.

This is just a ruff translation and certainly not a poetic one, but I think it conveys the message. As an artist, sometimes I think about the creative process or, really, about creating, plain and simple. Much of it has to do with just letting go. Letting go of preconceptions, of that we have been taught should be, letting go of being able to physically grasp, and being open to the intuitive and listening with our eyes and seeing with our ears. 

No, I didn’t make a mistake. You have to be willing to go further and beyond, to be open to the possibilities and to the fact that those possibilities might not be agreeable to all those out there. Matt told me there other day that I am an idealist. He is probably right. He is too even though he is more pragmatic than I am. And I hope we both hold on to that part of ourselves beyond our deaths. Because I believe that in being so we chose to focus on the best that live has to offer. We choose to face challenges with hope and we chose to share how wonderful life can be.

We all know life is not easy. What would we really learn if it were a steady line? – which, if you think about it, would look very much like a flat line… Once in a while, we all probably need a crash cart stat and a jump start. And those are not pleasant, but they get the heart beating again. But knowing that we all will get our share of rough patches, why would anyone chose to make them an every day life event?

In old Greek civilization, people would study and try to embody an archetype, the conceptual idealization of a concept in perfection. They studied these archetypes and tried to learn from them and used them as guides for everyday life. As a result, they would open themselves to higher levels of inspiration and creativity.

Without access to that exalted state of vision we would all still be throwing stones and freezing in the night because we wouldn’t have discovered fire yet. Without it, Haiti would have no hope and would irrevocably drown in desperation and desolation. Without it, Matt and I might not have recognized The Gift that we have been given and would not have been willing to keep on looking for The Perfect Blossom.

So I choose to be an idealist, to build castles in the air -- even though sometimes I might feel they are made out of bubbles -- and to add the foundations they need to last for a very, very long time…

Friday, January 29, 2010

Oh, A Bad Step...

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Saturday, January 9, 2010

Today we got organized and took all the Christmas decorations down. We – or I should say “I” – don’t like to take them down until after Matt’s birthday and the “Visit of the Magi” on January 6, which is celebrated in Europe and South America.

Matt started early in the morning and then I continued. I had all the stuff in the appropriate boxes and was taking down the swags when, coming down from the ladder, I took a hard step down and messed up my ankle.
Couldn’t put my foot down to take a step so Matt came to help me. We waited about an hour and I still couldn’t walk so we took a ride to emergency at Piedmont. Thankfully, it ended up being just a bad sprain.

So, all other plans made for the day went out the window.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Today I had to move around with crutches. First time ever, but I just could not put any weight on my foot. For a moment there, I had crazy flash forwards of what it would be if I had to go through the wedding in them. Uhh….

Anyway, we finished putting all the Christmas stuff away and Matt worked organizing the garage. We spent some time discussing location possibilities once again. Couldn’t do much of anything else, especially since the internet was down. A tech should be here on Tuesday to check it out. ‘Till then, we are “incomunicado.”

Monday, January 11, 2010

My foot felt much better today. I took the stirrup off – it was driving me a bit crazy to tell the truth. But, into the afternoon, my foot started to protest by going back into pain mode. So, the stirrup came back on.

No internet still. Man! It is amazing how much our lives are tied to the web. Half of my life is online. Between email accounts, calendars, website, etc., etc., etc., I kinda felt my other leg was injured too!

We ended up going out to run some errands. We went to Five Guys and finally took some pics for Matt’s blog, a project he has had for a while now. But I will let him tell everybody know about it.

We also went to get some junk gold appraised as we will be using the funds towards our wedding rings. Matt and I decided to pull all these pieces from times afar together to get our rings done. What could be better to represent the experiences that made us the people we are today and the road that led to each other?

Anyway, the price per ounce was not as good as we expected, but it is starting to climb after about 5 weeks of decline. So, we’ll see…

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Baby on the Way!

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Wednesday, January 6, 2009
Today was a calm day. Got a good night of sleep and then spent the day catching up with bills and paperwork. Spoke with Jeanne M. about how the things with Zaphyra are coming. Jeanne, I want to thank you for all your help with the plans. You keep me on track and I love our phone conversations. I can’t wait to meet you in person, hopefully before the wedding!
Mom was home today also and she prepared “Ceviche” and “Conchitas a la Parmesana” showing Matt how to prepare the recipes.
Matt and I talked a little about the location issue for the wedding, but we have not decided anything yet. I am pretty sure things will work out and fall into place when the time is right.
On a different note, we got a call from Cathy, Matt’s sister, in Hammond (Louisiana.) Little Matt’s baby has knocked on the door and is arriving! The whole clan is at the hospital so we are waiting for the arrival news. Cathy said that Madlynne Grace should arrive sometime after midnight.

Thursday, January 7, 2009

Baby Maddie – yes, we already gave her a nick name – arrived last night at about 3 am Atlanta time. Don’t ask me right now what is the difference with Hammond. I can barely remember my name ‘cause I stayed up last night waiting for the call telling us the baby was here. After calling Cathy to check, I finally went to bed a little after 1:30 am (I think) falling asleep some time around 3 am. Cathy called at about 4 am with the news. Baby Maddie had arrived at 9 lbs 10 oz! All is well in the world!!!
But, after that, I just could not get back to sleep, so I came to work on the music for the wedding. I had pretty much everything figured out but, since we have the location issue, some stuff needed to be reorged. So I shuffled things around a little and continued to work on getting all the paper copies printed.
Then I focused on getting all the lyrics for the music that is not published and marking what is sung with harmony, etc. Now I need to figure out the accompaniment and we should be in good shape to start rehearsals.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Well, baby, mom and daddy are doing great. Gaby and Maddie will be staying in the hospital ‘till Saturday, which is great. Matt and I will be visiting during the weekend of MLK’s Holiday and will also get the chance to meet Maddie’s little cousin Caleb who arrived in June. Can’t wait!
I tried to reach Father Joe again to see if he can officiate the wedding. I left him another message and sent him and email. Hopefully, we will hear from him soon.

Like many other people, we stayed home due to the snow. The roads are really covered with ice around here and, given the amount of accidents that have been taking place, we decided to be prudent and spend a nice, relaxed day inside.

We got to talking about the wedding, issue at hand being the location. We discussed different options but everything is in the air until we can figure out the issue about the ceremony. Matt is going to contact a friend to see what the options are.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


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Monday, January 4, 2009

So I have discovered Sylvia Weinstock, better known for the last thirty years as New York’s queen of wedding cakes. (Think Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones’ wedding.) This lady creates magnificent pieces of art at a certainly grand scale. All I can say is WOW! Just looking at one of cakes can be an experience or, as Matt put it, “a diabetic revelation” or “a temptation of death by sugar” through visual extravaganza.

I think we have pretty much figured out what we want. Of course, it is something unusual, a project in its own right, and it is to be seen if it is possible. But, then again, we don’t think within the bounds of what is standard or preconceived. That is certainly not us, is it?

We also found out that we cannot have an outside wedding as it is not allowed by the Catholic Church. I will leave it at that for the time being.
In the evening, we watched Gran Torino. Really good movie. If you have not seen it, you should check it out. Then, at midnight, we received Matt’s birthday…

Tuesday, January 5, 2009

Today is Matt’s birthday!!! I know, I know I already said it, but today is Matt’s birthday!!!
Bretty treated us to see Avatar as his gift for Matt. Guys, I am telling you, if you haven’t seen this movie, YOU MUST! It is groundbreaking in more ways than one. And talk about thought provoking. I will not get into the details ‘cause I do not want to ruin the experience for anybody. I don’t know if it will be as big, but I venture to say that “Avatar” will be to this decade what “Star Wars” was to the 70’s…It was the 70’s, wasn’t it? With a cost of $300M, the movie booked $900M on the first day! Wouldn’t you love to have the rate of return on some of your investments???

It was very thought provoking, addressing many issues as the abuse of power, the search for meaning in life, the universal interconnection of nature, trust, being able to see the true self of an individual and on, and on, and on. Nothing that has not been said before, but that certainly needs to be repeated over and over gain, maybe until it sinks into our conciousness and turns from thought provoking into action birthing. 

The music was perfect. One couldn’t expect less from a Horner score. Anyway, here is the link of the movie’s site: Thanks Bretty, this was an awesome gift, but your sharing your dad’s birthday was the best gift of all!

Mom joined us to go to the movies and Brett joined us after dinner. We had skirt stake with sweet potatoes, kale, and portabella mushrooms. Yuumm! Matt cooked the skirt stake and I took care of the rest.

I was also finally able to get the recipe for Malba. Talk about a difficult strategic plan! But, Matt had requested it and so, it had to be done! (LOL) And I had to run back to the store two times ‘cause I kept on missing some of the ingredients. It didn’t come out as good as it should have been, but it was still pretty darn good! Yuumm again!

Happy Birthday honey! I love you forever!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Post Holiday Lingering

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Saturday, January 2, 2010

Today was a slow day. I could not sleep last night and so I was worthless during the day. During my long night of unrest, I almost talked myself out of writing the blog. I am a private person by nature and even though I am continuously on stage, it is my love of music and my creative soul which take me there, as I do not enjoy being the center of attention.

In the evening, Matt and I went to see New Moon. It was a little slow at the beginning, but I did enjoy the film and look forward to see what they come up with for the obviously upcoming second sequel.

I love watching movies, especially with Matt. I love us going to the movies and it always feels like we are home when we are together.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Matt and I had an argument this morning. More than anything else, it was caused because of the two ways that we process and share information. Matt tends to work out the details in his head, make a plan, and set his course.

I am very different. I start with an idea and the idea might continue to change as I discuss it. My creative process is pretty much the same. I start with something that evolves as the creating takes place.

Of course, we talked through it, as we always do. And we reminded ourselves one more time that we need to remember these kinds of differences so we are aware of the different situations.

In the afternoon, I concentrated on cleaning up my Outlook contacts. I started doing this when I left Panasonic, but wasn’t even through a third. With everything that will be going on, it is a must to have all information up-to-date. So, I dedicated all day to doing this. And, let me tell you, it took all day to get it done. I finally cleaned the contact list from 1,800 to 1,300. I corrected the information in each card file, etc., etc., etc., I can barely move my right hand at this moment, but I am so glad this is finally done. Now I need to update the distribution list in our group.

But, for today, I am done!!!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Happy New Decade!

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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

During my afternoon with Jeanne, yesterday, I had had the idea of both of us walking down the isle together. (As you can see, I look for that which has meaning for us, rather than the standards of tradition.)

It just seemed right to me because of how we had come together. When reviewing the music of the ceremony, though, listening to U2’s Miss Sarajevo, I changed my mind. Matt had been OK with idea; but, while listening to this song, I recalled the meaning for him and decided to go back to me walking down the isle, coming to him. And so I told him my thought and I think we are pretty much going to do this.

Now, we still need to settle on the location.

Thursday, December 31, 2009

We had decided to stay in today. We are more home bodies than anything else.

In the evening I asked Matt if we would take me for Japanese. So we went to Nikko’s and enjoyed a wonderful meal. After that, we went for desert, Malba, at Georgia Shrimp. Jill was working and so we sat at one of her tables. She is supposed to call me on Saturday with her schedule for the week as we need to get together to record with Amy and edit what we already have.

After desert, we came back home. We ended up watching Julie and Julia. At exactly midnight, Matt looked at me and said “Happy New Decade!” And, yes, it is not only a new year, but a new decade also.

Back to Julie and Julia, what an enchanting movie! And I can’t help to feel as happy and in love as Julia. As Matt said when we were watching the movie, “It all feels new again…”

Friday, January 1, 2009

So it’s the first day of the rest of the decade! I slept in this morning. When I woke up, Matt had already been up for a while and had a fire going. Mmmm…I love how the house smells when we have the fireplace going!

In the afternoon, I went out to look for sale bargains. As usual, one found me. I won’t get into details right now, ‘cause I want it to be a surprise for the wedding, but, as many other things, this one just took care of itself!
I had also been looking for pre-lit garlands, but did not find any where I went. I will keep on looking tomorrow. What I did find was Matt’s birthday present due on the 5th!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Thoughts, Bouquets and Places

Monday, December 28, 2009

I dreamt all night with music. It was a slow starting morning but things are starting to flow. When getting dressed, I had a little trouble picking my clothes. I thought, “How silly! I am having trouble picking clothes to get dressed today?”

Then, my thoughts turned to the recent changes in my life. The wedding plans and being let go from Panasonic by the end of past October. Suddenly, I came to the realization that, as I had longed for during all my time behind a desk, I was now trying to do whatever I did with meaning. My Soul was now trying to exist with meaning. And even the menial task of getting dressed had to reflect something: a reborn self, free to be, to create and, most of all, drowned in Love.

So, the mere act of getting dressed, automated for so long, was now turning into an expression of my state of being and my creativeness. And I realized that, this morning, I was just subconsciously trying to reflect how I felt; the lightness of my heart and my creative self in new reborn emergence.

I can’t remember ever being this happy…

Later in the day…

Cathy, Matt’s sister, called. I spoke with her after we exchanged a couple of call backs and asked her if she would make my wedding bouquet and she said she would be honored.

I have been searching on the web and found various styles I like. In a couple of days I will upload them to Picasa and send her the link so she can see them.

I could not believe the prices online; anything, starting at about $100.00. Yikes! Of course, the ones I like are on the expensive side of the scale…

The more I think about it, the more I like the idea to have family and friends be and active and integral part of the wedding. I am pretty sure this is how it was in the older days. Somehow, it makes the details so much more meaningful, almost ritualistic. And a wonderful energy starts to envelope this journey, making it more magic with every step of the way…

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Today, Jeanne and I went for one of our lunches, our Christmas one. It is such a re-energizing joy to share this time together.

I met her at her new home so I could see the layout of the deck in front of the creek, a possible location for the wedding. I thought it was beautiful!

We would be on the deck, having as backdrop the creek. Jeanne suggested we faced our guests, idea I really like. She said, “we are here because of you and we want to see you.” Musicians would be to our right, on the deck extension. And there is more than enough space on the grass, between the deck and the house to put chairs for the guests.

She has a kitchen on the deck level, inside, and one on the main floor. Jeanne said we could empty the music room (which leads to the deck) and use it as a dance area or secondary plan in case of rain. We can also use the upstairs main level if needed.

The house is located on ten acres of land, kind of in the middle of the property I guess. There is a non-paved path that leads to it, but not place to park the amount of cars that would require parking as it is all woods. So she suggested we could have two shuttles going back and forth from the main entrance where everybody would park, driving people to the house.

There is a cute little bridge over the creek where we could take the bridal party pictures. There is also a tree that falls dead on the middle of the deck, which we could cover in lights.

Everything is just falling into place, by natural flow, as if all of it was meant to be…

Monday, January 18, 2010


Friday, December 25, 2009

It’s Christmas Day! All the usual suspects were here and we enjoyed fine food and had a wonderful time. Everything was very relaxed and enjoyable.

Once again, a picture is worth a thousand words, so here they are. Thank you for being a part of our lives! We love you!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Today was a day of relaxation, leisure, and doing absolutely nothing…

Sunday, December 27, 2009

So was today… ;-)

Friday, January 15, 2010

Merry Christmas Eve!

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Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Today is wrapping day! I love creating nice packages with beautiful bows for everybody; just don’t like doing it at the very last minute!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

The boys came at about noon to celebrate Christmas. I just love seeing them open their gifts and the cute gift wrappings that Christopher makes every year from newspapers and magazine letters to write our names! We also gave Christopher his birthday presents.

In the evening, we went, like every year, to Grace’s. Steve, Grace’s fiancĂ© was there, the kids, Lito and Tere, Eddie (the kids’ dad), mom, Matt and I. It is hard to believe we have known each other for, exactly, twenty years. Gaby is now at UGA and Marco has two years of high school to go and a wonderful talent for music.

I looked for a moment when I could talk alone with Grace, in the kitchen, and told her that I was going to ask Gaby to be my Maid of Honor. And, of course, she told me she had kinda figured it out. As she always says, “Te conozco mas que si te hubiera parido”, and she is right. We have shared a lifetime together…so many things, so much binds us closer than if we were sisters…

So, right after dinner, I took Gaby to the every day living room and asked her: “Will you be my Maid of Honor?” Man! I didn’t expect her reaction. I mean, I knew she was going to be happy. I had asked her a couple of weeks ago what she wanted her role to be in the wedding and she had said, “Maid of Honor,” but I didn’t expect to see her jumping around like a little kid that had just been given the most wonderful Christmas present…My heart was so full of love at that moment…and my eyes full of tears! I could not love her more if she were my own…

Grace came in and the three of us were hugging and Gaby kept jumping around – I’ll tell you, those soccer legs of hers are mighty strong! Then she grabbed her cell and said, “I have to call Jennifer” (her best friend) and so they got on the phone.

This is proving to be an even more amazing journey than I thought it would. I am so blessed. We are so blessed. My heart overflows with Love and the wonder of The Gift we have and are being given…

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Christmas in Full Throttle

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Sunday, December 20, 2009

Mom came yesterday and she and Matt prepared the family recipe spaghetti sauce, which shall be known as Grandma Camille’s spaghetti Sauce from now on. As one picture is worth a thousand words, here are plenty in visual eloquence:

In the meantime, I went out Christmas shopping, major reminder as to one of the reasons why I get this done through out the year…

Monday, December 21, 2009

Well, Christmas prep is in full throttle. Monica came to clean today and I run out trying to get some more shopping done.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

We finally have a Christmas tree! Matt and I went to look for trees a week or two ago. Our intention had been to do it the day after Thanksgiving, but unfortunately we were not able to.

We went to Pikes, but didn’t find any we liked. We then hit Home Depot and the poor trees looked like the left over after a drought! We then decided to go to Andy’s on 54 and found the perfect tree!

This morning, Matt started decorating it and later I continued. So our Christmas tree is now beautifully adorning the living room.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

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Monday, December 14, 2009

Today was a day of relaxation, chillin’ and unwinding. Did some more web surfing, mostly looking for bouquet designs. There are many, many beautiful ideas but, once again, nothing that makes me say “that’s it!”

So it’s going to be designing duty again. I have something in mind that I think will work very nicely…

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I had to catch up with every day life today, so it was pretty much opening mail, reading emails and paying bills.

Did some more online surfing, a bit of this and a bit of that, getting ideas here and there.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

With Christmas being barely a week a way, it is time to start getting ready for it!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Well, I spent the day putting all the music gear back in place. Not much fun but has to be done.

Friday, December 18, 2009

I finally got to decorate the house for Christmas. Unfortunately, whenever we have a show this time of the year, this always ends up happening almost at the last minute.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

This year we have all agreed to only give presents to the kids, but I still have to start. I am usually done about a month before. Not this year. It is time to get going.

My mom will be coming to prepare sauce with Matt as we will be having lasagna for Christmas, so I also have to go shopping for that also.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Mission Accomplished!

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We have been without internet service for several days now.  Sorry for the involuntary silence...

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Well, I got a good amount of work done. The whole beginning of the concert has changed. Unfortunately, there was no efficient way of fixing that track by when it is needed so I had to completely scratch it. We will be singing this intro a capella, which should work out fine since I originally conceived it as such. The harmonies sound pretty good and Matt will add a nice touch with the triangle and chimes.

When the girls got here we started to run through the program. We did the first part twice addressing notes after each song the first time around. Unfortunately, we only got through the second part once. We agreed to get together at Ten East at 10:30 am so we can run through the second part one more time. The show does not start ‘till 12:30 pm, so we should be OK.

Jill is not doing very well and this is the first day I have sung anything in a week, so it will be interesting to see how things work out tomorrow.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

We were at Ten East by 10:30 am and got everything set up in pretty much thirty minutes. Dan had joined us at home earlier to help load up. THANKS DAN AND THANKS HONEY! We left everything ready the night before, so the loading went fast and smooth in the morning, while yours truly got all dolled up for the show.

Amy was the first to arrive and then Paige with Lisa. It started to rain cats and dogs but not until we had all the gear indoors. Using the Dan’s new photo floods as lighting was very creative and worked like a charm.

Jill arrived at about noon. Poor thing, her voice was gone! I had already warmed up the girls and we were running the second act when she got there. So, we started trying different things with the Lloyd Webber “Pie Jesu” that she and Paige were singing. Her voice started to get better as she sung so we decided we would decide during the intermission what would be done.

Unfortunately, we had to scratch the Gounod “Ave Maria” which tessitura was about a whole step higher. No way her voice was going to be able to hit those notes.

About a week before, I had discussed with the girls an article I had read in “Classical Singer.” One of the points addressed was the fact that performers should not expect a performance to go as planned ‘cause it never does. And, if they do, they are setting themselves up for a lot of trouble. I can’t emphasize enough how true this is.

In the gazillion years I have been on stage, I have never, ever seen a show go exactly as planned. And, expecting it to, is, to say the least, very unrealistic. Your mind set has to be flexible, expect the unexpected, and be able to go with the flow in a professional manner, because you never know what brick is going to hit you on the head!

So, if your mind is ready for the possibilities, you can adjust much easier. And that is what we did. We adjusted the program accordingly. And, even though, we had a couple of little bumps on the road, it went really well. We sounded very good, the choreographies were charming and people really enjoyed the performance.

By “O Holy Night” I could hear a lot of people sniffling, so much so that I had to look towards the wall at the end of the room ‘cause my throat was getting twisted into a knot! But, we made it through, and got a standing ovation by those present. What could be better than sharing that which you love with those who you love? Music can speak words that words seldom can…

Oh, make a note in your calendars as we have been invited back for another show in the spring.  Good job ladies!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

A Bumpy Ride

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Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Rehearsals continue full throttle.  I have been working on editing the instrumental backtracks.  The program is flowing really nice!

Even though I have been sick for some days now, I am sure it will clear up for the concert.  Through the years and with experience, I have come to understand that it is not only the bugs that are going around at the moment, but the stress that just cannot be avoided that makes me and many others get sick before a concert.  I must say, though, that I am getting better every year, this one being the best to date.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Well, I finished editing, transposing, and mixing the necessary tracks.  Everything is ready to be uploaded to the board, start setting levels and programming.

Friday, December 11, 2009

I spent all day uploading the tracks on the board, setting levels and programming the automix.  First bump in the road was that the board froze – first time ever! – and I lost all the changes I had made since the last save.  So I had to basically start again!!!

I got a pretty decent amount of work redone by the time the girls got here for rehearsal, though.  Matt had set the Yamaha monitors in the living room for the tech.  When we started, we began to hear this big distortion and couldn't figure out what was causing it.  We tried everything we could and then began to go track by track.

Finally we figured out it was the tracks that had been edited in the computer the ones that had the problem.  Go figure!  I am guessing it was the program that I used but until I dig a bit more into it I will not know and right now I don’t have the time.   I have to focus on a solution and figure out how I work out half of the programs.  These tracks hadn’t only been edited for compositional purposes, but they had been transposed.

So, issue at hand, the group agreed to sing three of the pieces in the original higher key.  We had to adjust for the voices but things should work out.  Next thing will be tonight and it will be a long one as I will have to re-upload half of the music, set the level sfrom scratch for those pieces as well as the transitions from one piece to the other, and reprogram the automix. 

Needless to say, we didn’t get through much of anything.  I told the girls to go and started working.  No sweet dreams for me tonight…

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Music, Music, Music

To view the blog, click here:

Sunday, December 6, 2009
Monday, December 7, 2009
Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Well, needless to say, all our efforts at the moment are focused on getting the show ready. Musically, it is all coming together, as well as with the choreography. We need to focus on tech now!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

First Wedding Purchase

Thursday, December 3, 2009

OK, today was one of those days. I spent endless hours working on trying to print the poster for the show. Absolutely, NO LUCK! I did the route through the three printers, I run out of ink, then tried poster printing the image. Heck! I could not get a decent result.

Finally, at 9 pm I called Kinko’s, sent them the file and asked them to print it in photo paper. When I got there at 10:30 pm the lady – who, quite frankly, was not very customer oriented and appeared not to want to be there – had printed it in poster paper rather than in photo paper. Unfortunately, the price in photo paper was three times higher so I had to live with what they had done.

Friday, December 4, 2009

This morning I mounted the poster so I could drop it later in day at Ten East Washington. Jeanne and I got together for lunch and then we went to drop the poster in Newnan.

On our way back, we stopped at Barnes and Noble. I found the perfect planner, “Bride’s Year Ahead” or I should say it found me as it usually happens when things are right. I also got a book called “Stylish Weddings for Less”. So we could say these are the first wedding expenses (except the “Bride” magazine that I bought a couple of weeks ago.) They both have lots of great ideas and suggestions. Next step is to sit down, go through them and mark the interesting stuff.

Later in the day the girls came for rehearsal, except Jill. We are now rehearsing 3 hours a day until the day of the show. We worked on the choreography for “My Favorite Things” and “Winter Wonderland.” There is a lot of work to do, but I think it is going to be a good show.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

It’s been another busy day. Matt and I had to go downtown in the morning and then the girls came for rehearsal in the afternoon. We had a couple of Christmas concerts by friends we wanted to make, but we couldn’t get the schedules to work.

I also need to get some workouts in. With so much stuff going on, I am starting to miss a day here and there. Not good…

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

"A Touch of Christmas" Starts

Hi everybody! 
Thanks for the beautiful emails and comments. It certainly makes this journey very special beeing able to share it with you like this.  The address of the blog were everythig is being archived  and can be reviewed is
Please go ahead and post your thoughts! 
They will certainly be momentos we will treasure!

Love always,
Matt and Pia

Monday, November 30, 2009

Today, we started rehearsals for “A Touch of Christmas” . We need to put this one-hour program together in two weeks for a gig at Ten East Washington on December 13. We have already been working on the music and some of the choreography, but there is still much to do and in a very short time. So, for the next two weeks, you know what we’ll be doing…

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

I started to look at wedding rings designs online. Once again, there is SO much out there but the price selection is pretty good. There is something for each budget. So the thing is going to be to nail down a design.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

There was not much today, but work for the concert and flipping through an edition of “Bride” that I got. I didn’t find much that I liked. Quite frankly, I think it is better just to surf the web, though you might get drowned in the process.

I think back to when the internet didn’t exist or was not readily available to everybody…(Yes kids, there was such a time!  And NO TEXTING EITHER!) Just looking for ideas would have been exhausting. Granted, I would have probably bought a pile of magazines.

And then the excruciating pain of having to shop from one store to the next when you hate shopping. There’s only two places I like to go to, Kirkland and Hobby Lobby. I can stay in Hobby Lobby for hours, looking, getting ideas, seeing what they have, especially when I am designing the details of a show and I am working on the wardrobe.

Matt and I also like to go to Barnes and Noble. Don’t you just love the smell of books and coffee! And of course, I can spend hours in the music department.

I have also been looking at wedding invitation sets when shopping. There are some basic good choices that, with the addition of a special touch, can really turn outstanding. I have something in mind, but I need to let the ideas simmer...

Monday, January 4, 2010


I believe that the slideshow in yesterday's blog did not go through so here is the link:

Also, the link to this blog is:

Friday, November 27, 2009

So today has been a traditional left over day. Yum! And not only for food but for the time shared with those we love.

We have also been putting the Holiday china away and all the other nicks and nacks. I did some additional internet search but I didn’t find anything that captured my attention.

Sweet dreams world…

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Matt and I have been talking about some details and I think we have agreed on one key point. But, it is still not time to give this one away…

Sunday, November 29, 2009

The online search continues, this time checking out invitations. I got some ideas but I didn’t see anything that spoke to me, certainly not that said Matt and Pia.

Thinking about it, what would I expect to find something that would be us? Much of who we are is about how we do and doing ourselves, about creating and that is, at least for me (like I told a friend many years ago when she asked me what was music for me) “how I tell the world I am here.” So why would I expect for somebody else to know my thoughts and my feelings? To be us it has to have that participative creativity in it, so I think I’ll start working on a design.

Sunday, January 3, 2010


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

We got in touch with those we hadn’t been able to reach to give them the news.

We also went shopping for Thanksgiving. The usual suspects will be here, a total of 16 people including ourselves. Christopher and Brett are stopping by before they go to their mom’s. Matt is cooking two turkeys; I am preparing kale and fried sweet potatoes, and getting ice cream and apple pie; mom is here already and brought yellow squash soufflĂ©; Grace, Steve, Gaby and Marco are bringing mashed potatoes, cheese cake, and homemade cranberry sauce; Eddie and Terri will bring the wine; and Tere and Lito are bringing Tere’s eggplant specialty and bread. Lisa, Dan and Paige might join us if they get back in time from Nashville.

As Grace suggested… ;-) Matt will be making the “official” ;-) announcement during dinner.

I also started to look at wedding dresses online. What’s a girl gonna do? ;-) Many months ago, I had seen an article of “El Comercio” with some dresses that had called my attention. As I always do, I kept them in my Wardrobe Design folder. (I have a Design folder for pretty much everything and I dig through them when I am preparing a show.) I pulled the pics out.

The designers name is Elie Saab. Have you seen his stuff? It is absolutely amazing. I love how he goes beyond what has been done till this day when working with texture. He’s a genius! I found his site online and also the line he designs for Pronovias in Barcelona. Of course – do I need to say it? – these dresses start at about $6K!!!, so that is out of the question. But, it is possible I might be able to adapt one of the locally available dresses with the similar sleeves to look like the design I like.

I also found sites from China on eBay that claim can sew any dress. Gotta look more into it. The prices are unbeatable but, as you can imagine, I don’t know about that…

Wedesday, November 25, 2009

Today we finalized details for tomorrow. As usual, I set the table during the night and left anything I had to done taken care off (except cooking) so tomorrow I can get ready without having to rush.

Matt got the grill and porch ready for his cooking session tomorrow.

When everything was ready, I continued looking at wedding dresses. Man! There is so much stuff out there!!!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving! I just love the Holidays! Getting together with everybody, eating, talking, laughing; well, you know.

During Grace, we went around the table and everybody mentioned something he or she was thankful for. I know this might sound a bit corny, but I think it is very healthy and important, specially in time of challenge like the ones we are all living, to remember even one thing – if not the many things – that we should be thankful for. And I know this has been said endlessly, but there are so many that don’t even come close to having the life the we have in this wonderful country, in the beautiful town we live in.

Having been raised in Peru and having taught catechism in really poor areas when I was in high school, I have seen first hand the extreme poverty that others can endure. My schoolmate and I used to take bread with butter and jam every time we went. And I can clearly remember to this day how the little kids sometimes fought for a piece. Dressed in ragged clothes, wearing no shoes, studying in a school that had no roof and no windows, with bricks as chairs and no desks, these children came to listen and t learn.

We also get so caught the demanding rhythms of our lives, sometimes stuck in the system, automatically doing what we have to do every day, that we forget, how truly blessed we are, if at all because we have the opportunity to pursue our dreams if we so choose to do. I have lived in this country most of my adult life. And, even though I have roots in Peru, it is here were I grew into the person that I am today.

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

So here I sit writing these words, without a second thought, knowing I will be sharing them with the people I love. And I think, there are so many places in the world where I could not be doing this for so many different reasons…and I feel, once again, so truly blessed…

And, in being thankful, we “officially” shared our news with all those present during dinner, laughing, eating, taking pics, and enjoying our wonderfully blessed lives!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Five Years

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Today is five years that Matt and I have been together. For his gift, I put together a scrapbook of all the things that we have shared during this time. I started about a week ago. But as it turned out, he would spend a lot of time home these days so I could only get to work on in last night, in a frenzy, trying to finish it in time. Of course, the three printers that we have had to run out of ink, two of them just went kaput; and so I stayed up all night getting to finish, but I got it done.

We have shared so many things and, at the same time, it feels as if it were only yesterday when I found his business card on my windshield and Cindy told me to give him a call. Hadn’t it been for her, I probably wouldn’t have called him. But she said, “I have a good feeling about this” and so I rang.

On Sunday, November 21, 2004, we went for our first date, coffee at Starbuck’s in Peachtree City at 6:00 pm. That turned into dinner at Macaroni Grill and a conversation that lasted until 1:45 am and ended just because the restaurant’s staff was leaving.

And here we are, five years after. Who would have thought? As they say, love finds you whenever you least expect it.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Today, the celebration of our fifth anniversary continued. Matt asked me to marry him. He brought six roses, two chocolate glazed Krispy Kream donuts and coffee, my pink sapphire ring, and a Garmin so, as he said, “we can always find our way back home.” On one knee, Matt offered his heart to me, one more time, to keep, protect and embrace, with a promise to always keep The Gift safe.

I said yes.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Yesterday night and today, we told family and close friends, those we were able to reach. It is good to share our joy with those we love.

Friday, January 1, 2010

A New Decade Begins...

Matt and I want to wish you all a wonderful first year of the next decade. We hope that we are all blessed with abundance in health, prosperity and, most of all, love.

As most of you already know, this year is going to be extra special as we will be preparing for our wedding in November.

We have already started to work on the details. As I begun, the ideas started to flow, or should I say overflow? We don’t want a big thing. A small wedding, that has been the thought. But, being the creative individual that I am, my brain just started to go, and go, and go, and go. After a couple of weeks, though, the creator in me started to look for that which had meaning, the symbols of us.

I have always been able to create without much. And, just maybe, this is what, in being, triggers my creativity. I started to reflect about how weddings have evolved into incredible monsters that drown people in stress, specially the bride and groom. We want our wedding to be a moment that represents both of us, who we were, how we came to be, that which made us “us,” and we want to share all this with the people we love.

Suddenly and as it always happens, things started to come to me, the right things. And, in embracing this flow, we are embracing the nature of us, the meaning of us, The Gift of us and start a one year journey to celebrate The Perfect Blossom that we have found in our path.

I called my friend Jeanne to share a thought. I wanted us to write together about this adventure – she is a writer and I also write – specifically, about how to have a most memorable wedding without going bankrupt in doing so.

In the old days, people didn’t spend a fortune to celebrate together. And I don’t think there is a need to do so today, specially considering the fact that we have been in a recession for about two years now. I think the most important part of the celebration is found in the sharing, in many different ways, with those we love. And, in doing so, everybody can get a chance of being an active part of the process and creativity flows and blesses us all with its abundance.

When I showed Jeanne the thoughts I had jotted down, she suggested I post them in our blog, Matt and Pia. So, starting today, I will be sharing this wonderful adventure with you, our friends and family, many of whom are in other states, in South America and Europe, hoping you can partake in our joy.

Starting tomorrow, I will be posting my notes for three days at a time until I am caught up with the month that has passed since the day we got engaged.

So sweet dreams and, once again, as Tiny Tim said, “May God bless us, everyone!”