Monday, November 24, 2008

Music Monday

Thanksgiving is this Thursday. With it comes the predictible long drive, fun (hopefully) family gathering, and the annual playing of Arlo Guthrie's Alice's Restaurant. It just wouldn't be Thanksgiving without it.

Of course, Music Monday isn't nearly as much fun without the video but they disabled embedding. You'll have to click on the link to see that one. Party poopers - it wouldn't be Thanksgiving without them either, I suppose. It's like the cranky relative who complains about the cranberry sauce. We took care of that one the other night. I love having Thanksgiving leftovers. If we're going to someone else's house, I don't get any. So, I solved this problem by making my own T-Day dinner. This year, we were lucky enough to have K's best friend and her parents join us. It's like having relatives that you choose. No one missed the cranberry sauce, either, because we cleverly substituted this:

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Day of Reckoning, Month 2

Move along, folks - nothing to see here.

See, this is why I generally don't tell anyone that I'm trying to lose weight. I suck at the follow through.

The only thing I manged to do was meet with one of the trainers at the rec center to set up a weight lifting program. As soon as that was accomplished, I promptly came down with a nasty cold and haven't been back since. I did manage to do a TTapp video (Hit the Floor) yesterday. I'm going to try to do it every other day to see if I can get any positive results with my pelvic floor issues. I'm due to see the urogynecologist next month to see if we can get those sorted out yet again. Fun.

The problem with exercising regularly is that I'm fantastically uncoordinated. Don Quixote tilts at windmills; I tilt on treadmills. I have a really hard time walking in a straight line and not falling off those things. The Nordic Track we have at home is even more problematic - not only do I have to move my arms and legs in different directions at the same time, but I have to do so without falling sideways. Not a pretty sight. (Bonus points are issued for not hitting the cats or kids with the skis - if you think this is easy, you clearly have neither.)

If walking is problematic, aerobics and yoga are even more so. I just can't get the hang of coordinated movement. Yoga is easier, but not problem-free. My tree pose looks like the tree is in the middle of hurricane force winds. I have, however, mastered the corpse pose.

So, the scorecard - 0 pounds down, 57 more to go.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Music Monday

Lately, we've developed a (semi-unhealthy) obsession with Pocky. If you've never heard of Pocky, just remember that it rhymes (sorta) with "yummy". That's really all you need to know. I've found Pocky at all of the local Asian groceries, Wegmans, and World Market. They are also available online. You can even buy them at Think Geek - now that's a product endorsement.

what flavor pocky are you?

[c] sugardew

We're clearly not the only ones obsessed with this Japanese snack, at least according to my Google results. There are entire blogs devoted to Pocky's goodness. It comes in enough flavors that there is at least one quiz to determine what flavor of Pocky you are. According to this quiz, I'm a chocolate pocky. In addition to loving chocolate, the description of being "More or less 'normal'" is pretty accurate too. BUMD likes the almond crunch ones, and the girls favor the pink, strawberry flavored Hello Kitty Pocky. The fact that they manage to make them pink without red dye makes me an even bigger fan.

I'm fairly certain none of Pocky's other fans walking around singing, "Pocky pocky pocky I can't let you go." BUMD and I do it often. You can too, if you make the appropriate word substitutions to the chorus of the song "Candy". It's by Iggy Pop featuring the B52's Kate Pierson. It's a cool and catchy song by itself, but far more fun the way we sing it. Listen for yourself:

Monday, November 10, 2008

Music Monday

My Schwartz obsession continues - today's Music Monday features a song from Godspell. By K's request, we watched the movie together last Friday for our movie night. This choice had some repercussions for her later that evening. It also influenced the musical choices for this weekend. It's a little odd to hear High School Musical songs mixed with Godspell, but not entirely atypical in this household. Weirder still was listening to C intersperse his Bionicle play with Godspell lyrics. This isn't the first time he's done it, but it never ceases to weird me out a bit. Certainly, the Gospel According to C isn't quite what St. Matthew had in mind.

But getting back to the main goal of this post - my selection for Music Monday is Beautiful City from Godspell. The song has an interesting history. Apparently Stephen Schwartz decided at some point that the original lyrics were too sentimental. He rewrote the song for a new production of Godspell and then added more lyrics for yet another production. While I respect his decision, my heart lies with the original song that I grew to love after seeing the movie on TV while in high school (long after its original theatrical release).

However, the updated lyrics have taken on greater meaning to me in the past week. They speak to my hopes for Barack Obama's presidency. It seems like such a positive change for not only our country but for the rest of the world. Together, we can build such a beautiful city. In the words of Obama and Schwartz - "Yes, we can."

Beautiful City:
Out of the ruins and rubble
Out of the smoke
Out of our night of struggle
Can we see a ray of hope?
One pale thin ray reaching for the day

We can build a beautiful city
Yes, we can; yes, we can
We can build a beautiful city
Not a city of angels but we can build a city of man

We may not reach the ending
But we can start
Slowly but truly mending
Brick by brick, heart by heart
Now, maybe now
We start learning how

We can build a beautiful city
Yes, we can; yes, we can
We can build a beautiful city
Not a city of angels
But we can build a city of man

When your trust is all but shattered
When your faith is all but killed
You can give up, bitter and battered
Or you can slowly start to build

A beautiful city
Yes, we can; yes, we can
We can build a beautiful city
Not a city of angels
But finally a city of man.

The original movie version:

Monday, November 3, 2008

Music Monday

Friday, we had a triple holiday - Halloween, K's 10th birthday, and my 10th anniversary of becoming a mom. It seems like only yesterday that the midwife was late and flustered because she'd been rear-ended by Snow White while on her way to the hospital.

To celebrate her entry into the double digits, K and I had a girls' weekend in NYC. The highlight of our adventures there was seeing her first Broadway show. In honor of her status as a Halloween baby, and owing to my lifelong obsession with Stephen Schwartz musicals, we saw Wicked. It was excellent.

There are so many of Schwartz's songs that have shaped my life - Day by Day from Godspell, Corner of the Sky from Pippin, and For Good from Wicked, to name a few. For Good exemplifies my relationship with my family - because I know them, I can say that I was changed for the better, and I most certainly have been changed for good. The song never fails to bring me to tears; even now, just typing the name is making me tear up.

The soundtrack version, with photos:

If you want to watch the stage production: