Wednesday, June 30, 2010

B&B... But We're Way Better Than ANY Bed & Breakfast or Beans & Brews

Bailee Paxman & Brittany Hathaway

This girl is one of the most amazing people I have ever met. We happened to meet at church about three years ago. Brittany had just moved from New Jersey. Little did I know at that time, that this girl would become one of my best friends. She's crazy, loud, funny, honest, loyal, and supportive. When Brittany and I started to get to know each other, we found out how much we really have in common.

It actually starts to get pretty creepy.

*Obviously-- both of our names start with B.
*We are both the oldest child
*We both have crazy little sisters the same age (Brooklyn and Brook)
*We always start to say things simultaneously. We can finish each other's thoughts. It's like that creepy finish-the-other-person's-sentence thing that you see on TV on Disney Channel.
*We both wanted to be pediatrician doctors
*We both love performing, especially theatre (But oh, it doesn't stop here)
*Ironically, we both ditched the medical route and decided we wanted to pursue a career involving theatre. We did this at the same time. It wasn't planned.
*We both decided to go to Weber State University (But not because of each other, it just happened that way)

... and, the list goes on and on. (Really this is just scratching the surface.) Pretty much Brittany and I have more in common than is natural. Of course we had to become friends.  :)Brittany and I had the same English class our sophomore year and she temporarily lived in my ward with her grandma until her family bought a new house... and then we continued to get to know each other through high school because of performing and theatre. Brittany and I have SO many stories to tell, inside jokes to laugh at, and so many adventures that we will always reminisce.

We have been through so many awesome things together! We have had many great girls nights eating junk food and watching Gilmore Girls. We have pulled tiring overnighters and taken trips to Walmart at 3 in the morning. We have been to girls camp together. We have gone on dates together. We took the most amazing trip to NYC together where we had many crazy adventures (Like when the elevator broke and we had to run down 24 flights of stairs or when our taxi driver almost killed a biker on our way to Serendipity 3). We went to The Festival of Colors together (picture above) and experienced Hindu culture, we have performed in shows together, we've directed shows together, and we've roomed together SEVERAL times on theatre trips... ... and we will soon be rooming together in college at WSU!

Today we went to a 2:30 a.m. viewing of the movie Eclipse. Why on earth did we decide to go to a movie at the crack-of-dawn? This still confuses me as I sit here, half-asleep, attempting to coherently type this post. But it was WAY fun. We snickered at all of the die-hard twilight fans, made fun of the cheesy acting, sighed at the romantic parts, compared the books to the movies, and we also wondered how every time we go to the movies together we see the BIGGEST weirdo girls with the CUTEST gentlemen, and then we continue to wonder how on earth they can get a guy and we can't. (This one still puts me in a stupor of thought)  ;) But guys or no guys we had a really good time. (Even though I didn't get to bed until 5:30 in the morning, and now my sleeping schedule is completely outta-whack!)

I just wanted to post and say how happy I am to have a friend like Brittany, who will go to a movie with me at 2:30 in the morning, who will go on crazy adventures with me, laugh with me, and support me in all I do. I love that even though we get into dumb fights we can always laugh about them later. I can talk to this girl about anything. Brittany and I are really fortunate to have so many things in common- but at the same time we are two totally different people, and I love that we can get along with our similarities AND our differences. We have just enough in common that we can understand each other on an insanely weird level, and yet, we have enough differences that we balance each other out and we don't kill each other over our obnoxiousness. It makes for the perfect friendship!! I honestly don't know what I would have done without this girl in the last three years. She has SO much in store for her in the future. She is smart, funny, easy to get along with, talented, and probably the most loyal friend I've ever had. I can't wait to see where her future takes her, and I'm so glad I get to live with her for our first year in college. (Let's hope we don't scare off the other two roomates! I can't wait to meet them.)

Brittany, thanks for being the incredible person that you are. I'm so privileged to call you my best friend. Love ya!

P.S. I'm also so glad that we settled our arguments about Me marrying Dylan and Radio City Hall. Because I think our friendship is worth more than that. And I hope you can accept the fact that I DID know where Radio City Hall is and I will NEVER marry Dylan in a thousand years. haha ;) Oh and I still haven't forgiven you for not doing the peepee dance in front of Mrs. McGuire. You owe me.
What'd I say about the inside jokes? Don't ask.

Monday, June 28, 2010

That Contagious Disposition

"The difference between stumbling blocks and stepping stones is how you use them"

Today one of life's profound lessons exposed itself to me.
In church we discussed what it was to be optimistic.
This single word, a simple attitude...
Simple, but so not-so-simple to achieve
That happy disposition called
How many small and simple things do we overlook in a lifetime?
How many precious minutes do we waste
Being upset, frustrated and angry?
We take so many beautiful things for granted.
So much love is unnoticed,
And so many blessings go unaccounted for.

"I am determined to be cheerful and happy in whatever situation I may find myself. For I have learned that the greater part of our misery or unhappiness is determined not by our cicrumstance, but by our disposition."

I have been handed the most wonderful life
I have an amazing family and
A lovely place called home.
I know some of the most supportive and positive people
And I am privileged to call them my friends.
I have had good education,
And I've been given talents that I can improve on and
Share with everyone.
I've been able to travel and see many exciting places
And learn many new things.
I have had some unbelievable opportunities :)
And I have the gospel ever-so-present in my world.

Oh, what a blessed life :)

After realizing all of the amazing things
That have been so graciously given to me
I can't help but be ashamed at the times I have wasted
Being upset or frustrated.
Why waste time being unhappy?
Life is too short. Make it sweet.
Chances are...
Somebody has it worse.
Is the glass half-full, or half-empty?
Even when life may deal us a bad hand,
We should plow through any experience
With an uplifting attitude
We should place our stumbling blocks
As stepping stones.
Because the hardest experiences
Make us the strongest...

Here are some lyrics to a song.
I think it sums everything up
Just perfectly.

When you cry be sure to dry your eyes
'Cause better days are sure to come
And when you smile be sure to smile wide
Don't let them know that they have won
And when you walk, walk with pride
Don't show the hurt inside
Because the pain will soon be gone

And when you dream, dream big
As big as the ocean blue
'Cause when you dream it might come true
When you dream, dream big

When you laugh be sure to laugh out loud
'Cause it will carry all your cares away
And when you see, see the beauty all around and in yourself
And it'll help you feel okay
And when you pray, pray for strength
To help you carry on
When the troubles come your way

And when you dream, dream big
As big as the ocean blue
'Cause when you dream it might come true
When you dream, dream big

                                                                            ~Ryan Shupe

Friday, June 25, 2010

Karaoke Night!

I was headed out from an awesome rehearsal yesterday, when some of the cast from Pirates of Penzance asked if I wanted to come to Karaoke Night with them. Huh? Well apparently, the Applebees across the street from Hale Centre Theatre has Karaoke Night every Thursday. And apparently, it is ''The post-show hangout spot'' for Hale cast members. So after calling my mom I headed over to karaoke night! (The fellow-cast members first thought I was on the phone with my husband!... husband, I say? Yeah right! lol I'm the youngest person in the cast, so most of them don't have to call their moms anymore. I'm lame haha!)  
Karaoke Night was really fun, even though I'm a bit younger than everyone. There is one other cast member who just graduated high school, there are some cast members in college, and some who are married adults. But everyone is so nice! I ordered some chips and salsa, and I had fun getting to know people in the cast. I didn't sing karaoke this time (though I was pressured) but I pinky-swore I would sing next time... ... so we'll see how that goes. ;)
Between the amazing rehearsal we had and Karaoke Night, I had a great time. I love making new friends when I'm in a show, and summer shows are always a blast! So I guess I better brush up on some of my pop, rock, and country songs... after all, I DID pinky swear that I would sing at our next outing to Applebees... so i guess that makes it official ;) Maybe they'll take it easy on me and let me do a group number. Either way, Karoake Night was awesome, and now I have something to look forward to on Thursdays. :)

Monday, June 21, 2010

A Day Among the Elite

Theatre, music and dance...
Mastering all three
Is no easy task.
With each new show,
New challenges are encountered.
So what's the latest?
Pirates of Penzance
Where I have been cast in a
Classical Operetta
Singing the part of an
Three things which I am not fully confident in.
Practice, Practice, Practice.
My fellow cast members
Are extremely talented.
Sometimes it's even intimidating
But they're all very nice :)
I'm hard at work to keep up!
Continually building my character,
Singing through my harmonies,
And trying to soak it all in :)
But the show is so much fun!
Every day I look forward to rehearsals
(Despite the drive to and from)
I can't wait!
Another show is in progress!
What would I do with my life if I wasn't involved in a show?
Guess that's why they call me
A Drama Geek. ;)
And proud of it!

Well... off to another rehearsal!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Ultimate Dad :)

(Dad, goofing off with my brother Benjamin)

Today is Father's day.
And I sat here
Pondering about what to post.
It suddenly occured to me.
Of course!
I should post about my
Truly amazing

I have always loved
Both of my parents
Immensely so.
It is true...
I am a Daddy's girl,
And proud of it!
I'm 18 years old...
And I still call my father
Even in front of friends :)

He's my Pal.
I love him for lots of reasons,
Here's just a handful.
10 reasons why I love my dad.
(Not in any particular order of importance.)

1. Best Shopping Partner!
Whenever I go shopping for clothes, I ALWAYS take my daddy with me. Mom is good to shop with too, but she doesn't enjoy leisurely shopping as much. My dad and I always discover the best stores, the best deals... and amazingly enough the best clothes! That's right, my dad (even being the firefighting, camping, rough and tough man he is...) has a great taste in clothes! We have lots of fun going shopping. Usually we make it a date. Daddy-daughter shopping time, and then dinner at the one-and-only Jim's Family Diner. It's almost become tradition whenever we have shopping to do. :)

2. The Deluxe Breakfast Chef.
My dad has always been the earliest to rise, and being a firefighter, he definitely knows how to cook for himself. Oftentimes I wake up in the morning to the smell of his delicious breakfast! Eggs, waffles, apple-smoked bacon, omelets, hasbrowns, french toast, hot chocolate, orange julius, muffins... you name it! In fact, Daddy has become famous for his breakfast skills among all of my friends too. (I'll never forget the time when breakfast at Denny's fell through so four of my guy friends and I came home and Dad cooked us a breakfast FAR BETTER than Denny's ever could have offered. Ever since then my friends ask when they can come back again.)

3. Gives the Silliest Nicknames :)
One of the quirks I love about my dad... has definitely got to be all of the absurd nicknames he gives his kids. I've been "Pud" ever since I can remember. And what is Pud? As I have had to explain to my friends on multiple occasions, "Pud" is short for Pud N' Cake... which still might seem odd to you. But it fits, and it's fun. There's also Angelgirl, and various other names I've recieved in the past 18 years. He's always saying names like "Stud Muffin" (Benjamin), "Weebitee" (Brooklyn), and we will always be known as "Dad's Beasts" to Daddy.

4. Biggest Embarrassment! ;)
Of course, who would a Dad be without embarrassing his kids? And even though I always feel stupid at the moment, I love looking back and laughing about all the embarrassing things my dad says/does to me. There will always be my first date. Can't forget that one. My dad was working when I went on my first date. When my first date (Jordan Ladesma) came to pick me up, my dad showed up in the Ambulance with one of his fellow firefighters!! My date was pretty confused when he saw the ambulance parked outside the house. I'm just glad my dad didn't interrogate him too much. ;) And there's always the continual joking about how, "Bailee doesn't like anything but Mac N' Cheese, Chicken noodle soup, and grilled cheese sandwhiches. You'd better find a husband that can cook for himself!" This of course is not true (I may be a picky eater, but I'm NOT a food junkie) But, because Dad knows it pushes my buttons, he continually plays the 'cheap food' card. Oh.... Daddy :)

5. My #1 Fan.
My dad is one of the biggest members of my support group in anything that I pursue. He comes to every one of my performances, even when it's his only day off from work at the firestation. He always calls me to ask me how my auditions went. He calls me to see if I made it into a show. When I don't make it into a show, he's there to cheer me up. When I do make it into a show, he's there to cheer me on! I will never forget the time when I didn't get a part I was hoping for in a school show, and when I came home my parents had written me a card. It was so inspirational and loving. Then my dad sent me a hilarious picture text message of him and my brother making goofy faces... just to make me laugh, because he knew I was feeling down.

6. Traveling History Buff
My dad has taught me to have a love for nature, traveling, and history. He LOVES to take the family camping... and on our camping trips we create some of our best memories. He's the best star-gazing buddy, and he really knows how to tip a canoe. We also love to go four-wheeling. I love camping with my dad. Not only do we go camping in Utah, but my dad has taken us traveling and sight-seeing to many wonderful places like England, France, New York, Washington D.C., Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, South Dakota, California... and even more places. My dad is a big history buff, so I've really come to appreciate traveling to different places to learn about history. We always have an amazing time on our vacations and camping trips!

7. Lives With Laughter and Enthusiasm.
I love hearing my dad laugh. He has a big, hearty, fun laugh. Whether he's making jokes over the phone, teasing his family, or making fun at other things... my dad can always give us a good laugh. Just like the one time when we were at Zion's National Park and there were a bunch of foreign tourists that were being really weird. These tourists were at a beautiful national park, and the only thing they were fascinated in was the small river that ran through the park. This river is nothing monumental, or even remarkable. It's just there. The tourists were exclaiming "Look! It's the MUDDY RIVER!" As if this dull river was the most amazing sight they had ever laid their eyes on. Oh boy, did my dad love poking fun at them! Soon, he got the whole family mocking the tourists... "Oh look, it's the incredible MUDDY RIVER! Let's get a picture!!"  (It's one of those jokes where you had to be there. But trust me- if you would've been there, you would've been laughing.) My dad has really taught me through example that life is to be enjoyed. You can really tell when he is enjoying himself, or when he's doing something that he loves to do. He glows with the love that he has for his hobbies and pastimes. His laughter is contagious!

8. Hard Worker
One of the most important things I admire about my dad is his work ethic. He always says "If you're not going to do your best, don't bother doing it at all." He works hard at his job, he works hard at home, he works hard at school... I have never seen my dad do anything less than his best. When he finds me not doing my best, he pushes me to reach my full potential. When I wasn't working as hard as I should've been in school, he pushed me to succeed. And even though sometimes I got frustrated, later when I looked back I was so glad he was there to push me along. My dad is truly a student of life... he's always learning and working hard. Recently, I've realized that I want to strive to be more like my dad. I want to work harder and ALWAYS do my best.

9. The Best Teacher
My dad has always been there to help me with my homework. He's helped me with math homework, with proofreading papers, and with countless amounts of projects. But his teaching goes far beyond school work. My dad has taught me so many life-lessons as I've grown up. He's taught me how to be a hard-worker (See #8), He's taught me how to be financially smart. Haha... he even made me sit through a five-hour financial seminar with Dave Ramsey. :) He's taught me to be independent, He's taught me to be respectful. He's taught me how to be kind to my family. He's taught me how important it is to have the church in my life. He's taught me what I want in a husband... so that my children can have a father as great as him. He's taught me countless lessons about life. I know that he has many more to teach me, too. And I will always love him for the teacher that he is to me.

10. The Ultimate Dad
I love my dad for raising me, tolerating me, teaching me, laughing with me, guiding me, and loving me. He is everything I could wish for in a dad! He is my leader, my mentor, my motivator... and my friend. He is the Ultimate Dad. I couldn't ever find the appropriate words to describe how awesome and incredible he is. Hehe :) My dad is Ultimately. The. Best.
Thank you for everything Daddy, I love you... and Happy Fathers Day!!!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

New York City 2010

WARNING: This post may be long. Such an eventful week, and I don't know how to cover it all!

Night Before Day #1 June 7, 2010
11:00 pm. Our flight leaves. We took the red-eye flight... yawn... and we arrived in NYC the next morning.

Day #1 June 8, 2010
We arrived in the JFK airport pretty early in the morning, and we rode the bus into Manhattan. Our bus driver, (I think his name was Randy?) was SO entertaining. He gave us random fun facts about NY on our way into the city, and we all loved taking pictures and admiring the sights out the windows.

We couldn't check into our hotel, The Hampton Inn, until 3:30 pm but we dropped off our luggage at the hotel and ate breakfast at the hotel. The Hampton Inn serves a great free breakfast every morning. I had a tasty bagel with cream cheese... and hot chocolate (my favorite!)

After breakfast we were off sight-seeing! First stop: The Brooklyn Bridge. We took our first subway ride over to Brooklyn, and we walked across the bridge. The views from the bridge were amazing, and it was a great start to the trip! (With much difficutly avoiding the bike-riders who were zipping past us on the bridge)

After we walked the Brooklyn Bridge we headed over to Ground Zero. The big empty space where the twin towers used to be is now a construction zone. But seeing the hole where the two buildings were really leaves you with a feeling of sadness for the terror that America felt when the planes attacked on 9/11. After we saw Ground Zero we went to a church, not far from where the towers used to be, that had withstood the rubble and destruction from 9/11. Now the church is full of memorials and memories dedicated to the police officers and firefighters that lost their lives during 9/11.

After our look back on 9/11 we took the subway to Grand Central Station. (Remember, the scene in Madagascar where the animals run in the Grand Central Station?). It's huge! The ceiling is really high and is a painted map of the constellations. Downstairs there are a ton of restaurants and places to eat. While we were there I had a piece of delicious Cheesecake from Juniors (with a glass of milk, of course). What would a trip to NYC be without Cheesecake?

Then we walked to the New York City Library. The library is gigantic! It's very beautiful and elegant. We walked the upper floors and saw the beautiful ceiling work and artwork in the studies. We also visited the bottom level (The Children's Library) and took a look at the original stuffed animals that inspired "Winnie the Pooh" They were so cute!

After our visit to the library, we stopped by an information center in Times Square. There, we saw the ball that drops at New Years every year, and we also got information about all of the shows that are playing on Broadway.

Finally, the hotel! We had a looooong day that first day, and finally we got to check in the hotel. We had a three hour nap before the show! It felt so nice, and then we got dressed up and ready to go to Next to Normal... the first broadway show we would be seeing on the trip!

Next to Normal was PHENOMENAL! It made a lot of people cry. The story is about a mother who suffers mentally from the loss of her son. The story was breathtaking, and the singers were incredible! It was a wonderful start to our theatre experience in New York City.
After the show our group ate at St. John's Pizza. (A very popular NY pizza place) Then I went with some of my friends to the Hershey's factory and the M&M factory. That was a lot of fun, and I made some new friends too! I was so privileged to meet Annie Smith, Tyler Bowers, and Tauni Pemberton... they are awesome friends.

Day #2 June 9, 2010
We began the day by going to the top of the Rockefeller Center (a.k.a. "Top of the Rock"). The view from this skyscraper was outstanding! I took some panoramic pictures with my new camera I got from graduation/birthday, and I loved looking at the views. :)

After admiring the NYC views, my mom and I went to the Times Square TKTS booth. TKTS is a very useful way to get discounted tickets to Broadway shows. We got tickets to Come Fly Away for 50% off. And then, after some lunch and a stop by the hotel to freshen up, we were off to the matinee show! Come Fly Away is an all-dance musical. There is no singing or speaking. It wasn't my Mom's favorite, merely because it wasn't what she was expecting, but I absolutely loved the dancing. Those dancers are fabulous, and all of the music was Frank Sinatra (which also meant a lot of old people were in the audience with us. tee hee.)

After the matinee show it started raining like crazy, so we bought an umbrella and my Mom and I joined a group of my friends at Stardust Diner for dinner. Stardust Diner is a restauraunt on Broadway where the waiters and waitresses sing to you while you eat. The diner totally has a 1950's Jukebox feel to it. While it was a super fun restaurant to eat at, It cost us a pretty penny, and the food wasn't anything amazing. But it was a cool experience anyways!

When we were through with dinner, we met up with the rest of the Drama Club at the hotel to see the next show; The Addams Family Musical. This show was hilarious!! It was very entertaining. My friend Rudy told me that one of the characters, Wednesday, has the same voice type as me... and he could really see me playing that role... ... I was flattered, because I loved her part! So now I love singing Wednesday's music. :) So fun. The set for Addams Family was AWESOME, and everyone really enjoyed the performance. We got to have a chatback with the actors after the show... and we got some autographs! We didn't do anything after the show because of the rain, but it was still a great day!

Day #3 June 10, 2010
We woke up with another breakfast at the hotel (I was definitely becoming a fan of the hot chocolate and hazelnut coffee creamer). We made our way to The Met -- The Metropolitan Museum of Art. This museum is unbelievable! You could visit the museum every day for an entire year... and STILL not see everything the museum has to offer. We had an entertaining and enthusaistic tour guide, and we also got to do a bit of exploring on our own. There was a huge variety of beautiful artifacts and pieces of art. My favorite was the enormous bamboo exhibit on the roof!

Next stop after The Met: Central Park. We walked through the pretty green park (Not all of it, the park is huge!) And we listened to the most entertaining street performer I have ever met! Then, we walked to Grey's Papaya. A NYC treat... Papaya Juice and a hot dog. Yum! I'm not a big fan of hot dogs, so My mom had the hot dog and I drank the Papaya Juice (So refreshing). When we were done eating our NY hot dogs, we went to the Levain Bakery. Here, the most delicious cookies are made. They will change your life. They are SO BIG... and they are SO SCRUMPTIOUS! I had a Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip cookie. They're so large that one cookie fills you up.... too bad we didn't have milk to go with it!

After we ate our cookies, we sat down and took a little rest to let all of our food settle! Then, we walked a LONG WAY around Central Park to 5th Avenue. This street is the shopoholic's Heaven! All of the ritzy, expensive, name-brand department stores are strung along 5th Avenue. It started raining again, so my mom (Who isn't much of a shopper) went back to the hotel and I went shopping with some friends at one of my favorite stores, H&M. No luck finding anything I absolutely loved the first time... so after helping my friends choose out their new outfits, we all went back to the hotel to get ready for the next Broadway show.

Memphis was insanely good. The theme is about segragation and interracial relationships. It is based on a true story, and it is heartbreaking. There was a wonderful moral to the story of Memphis. (Not to mention later in the week it was awarded 'Best Musical' at the Tony Awards) We were lucky enough to have another chatback with the actors in Memphis after the show. They were such nice people, and it was interesting to learn about their careers and listen to their advice as performers.

Day #4 June 11, 2010
We woke up bright and early. We would begin our touring adventures today with a ferry ride to the Statue of Liberty. It was amazing to see this statue up close in real life. We took lots of pictures, and the ferry-ride was fun too. We decided not to get off at Liberty Island (Where the statue stands), but to continue on to Ellis Island. Ellis Island was one of the places where Immigrants first visited when they came to America. Immigrants had to be documented and go through various procedures before they could become a citizen and reside in the U.S. Now Ellis Island is a museum for all of this Immigration history. It was very interesting to look at all of the pictures and artifacts from the Immigrants that have come to America throughout the years. My mom and I bought some amazing fudge at Ellis Island... and after a couple of hours we took the ferry back to Manhattan with the rest of the group!

After our trip to Liberty and Ellis Island, we saw a 9/11 memorial, and then we took the subway to Chinatown!! Chinatown is the perfect place for bargain shopping! I got an adorable purse in Chinatown, as well as two scarfs, and a necklace. It was so fun to see all of the back-alleys and merchandise stands lining the streets of Chinatown! We also visited Little Italy (neighbor to Chinatown) where we ate Gelato (Italian Ice Cream).

When we were all shopped-out, we returned to our hotel. Then, some of my friends and I went to Serendipity for dinner. This restaurant is so popular that it had an hour wait. We signed up on the waiting list, and then we went and visited Dylan's Candy Bar while we waited to eat dinner at Serendipity.

Dylan's Candy Bar is CRAZY! Three floors of every kind of candy you can think of. They even had Candy/gummy Lingerie!!! They also had "PMS" Candy Bars (Perfect Monthly Satisfaction.) There was candy everywhere. I couldn't believe it! I felt like I stepped into the movie Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

After the hour-long wait was over, we found our seats at Serendipity. Serendipity is one of my favorite restaurants in NY, because it is home to the DELICIOUS and widely popular frozen hot chocolate!!! I am the biggest lover of ice cream, and so I made it a requirement that I ate at Serendipity sometime during my trip to NYC. Even though it was eight dollars for the treat, it was worth every penny! When I tasted it, I felt like I died and went to heaven. Frozen Hot Chocolate sounds a little weird... but it is soooooo yummy. I wish we had it in Utah... I love it SO much.
When we finished our amazing food at Serendipity we took the subway back to our hotel and met up with the rest of our group for Promises, Promises. This musical revival is so charming (even though it is about men having affairs with their coworkers. haha!) Sean Hayes and Kristin Chenoweth did a wonderful job. Sean's character made the show spectacular. It was such a cute show to watch. (And what an amazing opportunity to see Kristin Chenoweth perform live!) Of course we got autographs after the show. Kristin and Sean were so nice and personable! They took time to sign everyone's playbill. :)
After Promises, Promises my mom and I, as well as a large group of friends went to Carnegie Deli for some Cheesecake! This was the best Cheesecake I have tasted in NY yet! The pieces were probably bigger than my face! I got a slice of Chocolate Cheesecake. What a sweet way to end a marvelous day in NY!

Day #5 June 12, 2010
On the morning of the fifth day, my mom and I took a visit to the Manhattan Temple. The temple is so special and beautiful. The second the doors close behind you, you can't hear a single Manhattan sound. All of the city and worldy things have disappeared behind you. I did baptisms for the dead at the temple. There were some new converts there, and it was their first time doing baptisms for the dead... what an incredible experience being able to be there for their first time. It shows how much we take for granted the work we can do in the temple for the dead. There were also two missionaries at the temple. One of the missionaries, Elder Davis, is from Draper Utah! He's returning home in a few weeks, and it was fun to meet him (what a small world!) He had this Manhattan Temple pin on his lapel, and I told him that his pin was cool and asked him where he got it. He told me that his mission president gave it to him, and then he continued by taking off the pin and telling me I could have it! I replied and said that it was okay, and that I was just admiring it, but he insisted! So I got an awesome pin of the Manhattan Temple.... ... I just love Missionaries, they're great :) :) My experience doing work at the temple was really neat, too.
 When we were done at the temple we made another visit to TKTS and the Box Offices to get tickets for the evening show. I purchased a ticket through the lottery to Rock of Ages, and my mom got a ticket from TKTS to Mary Poppins. We ate lunch at Famiglia's Pizza in Times Square and then we went to the matinee show, Lend Me A Tenor. This show was a play, not a musical... and it was SO FUNNY. Despite how tired I was, I thoroughly enjoyed Lend Me A Tenor and got a handful of good laughs from the show. Justin Bartha (Riley in National Treasure) and Tony Shallube were the leads in the show. We got autographs from both of them.
 The evening show that I chose to see was Rock of Ages. There were about 13 RHS Drama people who chose to see this show, and we all got our tickets through the lottery. Rock of Ages was well done, but I thought there was a lot of unecessary content in the show. The music (which was all 80's rock music) was absolutely phenomenal though! They gave us fake lighters to wave during the show, which was fun, and the performers were very energetic! I just wish the content and storyline were a little bit better.
 After Rock of Ages, I took a short walk around some of the city with my theatre teacher Mr. Eaton, his wife, and some of my theatre friends. Then we walked back to the hotel for the night. (As the days went by we started to get more and more tired... and my bed never felt so comfortable!)

Day #6 June 13, 2010
After what seemed like too short of a night (yawn!) We woke up yet again for another day in NYC!! We got up at about 8:30 to 9... so we got to sleep in a little bit. My mom, my friend and I went to Magnolia's bakery for some one-of-a-kind famous cupcakes. (Why is it that NYC has the most amazing desserts I have tasted in my entire life?! Not fair!) We also walked past Radio City Music Hall, the place where the Tony Awards are held every year.

Then we walked back to Times Square. I was told by a Sister at the Temple that if I went and purchased something from American Eagle, I could have a picture taken and put up on their billboard in Times Square. So I did just that! I bought a $5 shirt and got my picture taken. Sure enough, my picture was put on this awesome, huge, enormous, electronic billboard in Times Square!!! I was famous! ;) And technically, I can say I made an appearance on Broadway!! hahaha... I felt super cool.
After my claim to fame we went to a small deli and got lunch. We took our lunch to our hotel room and spent a little bit of down time. I wrote some of my missionary friends and sent them postcards, and I relaxed in the hotel room. Then we took the subway to the matinee show. Our Town. This off-broadway show is a life-changing experience. The story is breathtakingly beautiful. I absolutely loved this play. It has such an amazing lesson to teach. The actors were brilliant, and the staging was unbelievable. This was one of my favorite shows, even though it was off-broadway. It was also a crier. ;) But wow... it was amazing.

After Our Town we met the RHS group back at the hotel for our last Broadway show. (Tear...) Billy Elliot. I had been anticipating Billy Elliot all week. It was most definitely worth the wait, and it was everything I had imagined! Billy Elliot is about a young boy in England who wants to be a ballet dancer. His mother is dead, and his father wants him to be a boxer. The kid who plays Billy Elliot is a prodigy. He can dance like no other. I was in shock the whole time!!! Billy Elliot was another one of my favorite shows (And I know some people didn't enjoy it... psh). What better way to end my Broadway experience than with a 10 Tony-Award winning, phenomenal production of Billy Elliot!

After the last show My mom and I (along with some of our other friends) went to dinner. We were planning on dining at The Eaterie, but when we discovered that was closed we went to some random place across the street. (That turned out to be really yummy). Then we returned to our hotel for one last night of sleep before our return home!

Day #7 June 14, 2010
We woke up in the morning and did an NBC studios tour with the RHS group. The tour was interesting, but I'm not a big TV person, and I don't know most of the shows that were talked about. It was still fun to be able to tour the studios though. After the tour, my mom and I made one last stop at H&M where I bought two really cute blouses. When we were done shopping we went to the hotel and packed! We loaded all of our suitcases onto the bus... and we were off! Goodbye New York City! We had a looong plane ride home, and now here we are back in good ol' Utah.

It was the trip of A LIFETIME, but it's nice to be back at home. (There's no place like home, Todo!) I hope that I'll be able to travel back to NY again someday. I made new friends, tried new food, saw new and exciting places, and learned about some amazing new shows. What an experience! Thanks Mom and Dad for the opportunity. I've been once before two years ago... and this time I got to take my mom back! It was such a BLAST!!! Even though this blog post was a NOVEL, it doesn't even begin to discover all my experiences from the trip.

 And now... recovery time. What an AWESOME way to kick off this summer. I can't wait to see what adventures the rest of the summer holds!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

The Big, Bad Apple

Here we go!
Tomorrow night
My mom and I
Are headed out to

It's my second time visiting
The Big, Bad Apple.
The Fashion Capitol of the Nation...
The home of theatre and all things

This is where my
Passion for performing
Gets to shine through!
The Drama Geek/Theatre Major's

We leave tomorrow night,
Take the red-eye flight
And we'll be gone for seven days!
We're seeing nine shows
Tasting all the exciting food,
And touring all over Manhattan!

And of course, lots of pictures
To be posted soon!

Can't wait! Be back in a week :)
Much Love,

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Catch a Breath

These last few days have probably been
Some of the most eventful momets of my life
Up to this point.
Let's rewind a bit, shall we?

I know I've covered this one already.
But now the pictures are downloaded.
I recieved my high-school diploma!
And I got to walk with my class.
It's all too surreal...
I feel like I'm merely on vacation
And I'll have to return to RHS one day
But this is not true!
I'm really excited
For all of the new and exciting
Adventures that the next step of my life
Will bring!
Friends... Keep in touch!

Graduation Party
I went to Dylan MacDonald's house
Pool party!
That lasted until 1:00pm
But my friend Landon Arnold and I
Weren't finished partying.
We ventured to Walmart at 2 am.
Bought sidewalk chalk
And colored our friend's driveways!
I got home late at 4 am!
But it was a great way to kick off...

My Birthday
The big 18! I'm legal! Woot!
My birthday was fun!
My awesome friends
Sang to me and we had cake.
(Peanut Butter Frosts... same thing as cake)
Then later in the morning,
I went with my friends
Brittany Boynton, Preston Weber, and Mike Adler
And of course,
My friends made the waiters sing to me
So I got free ice cream. :)

Arts Festival
My Reign as first attendant
For the Miss Riverton Royalty
Has begun.
I have many activities in which
I need to represent the city.
The 3-5th of June
Was the Arts Festival.
I went yesterday after some
Birthday festivities
And I've been at the festival
All day today.
My awesome friend
Josh Brockbank
Came to the festival to enjoy the art
And keep me company.

A Few Other Events... (No Photos)

Pirates of Penzance
I made it into Hale's production of
Pirates of Penzance.
My first rehearsal is tomorrow
And I'm thrilled to have the privelege
To be cast in this production!\
I'll be posting my experiences here

Olive Garden
For graduation/birthday dinner
My family went to Olive Garden!
It was delicious...
The best part about Olive Garden?
Endless breadsticks and salad!

More of the Missionaries
(See post, "Elderly Company")
I had the wonderful opportunity
To invite two of my great friends over
To have a discussion with
The LDS missionaries.
Elder Hughes and Elder Holm
Did a wonderful job,
And it was an amazing experience for me.
(On my bday, too!)

New Camera
For a graduation/birthday present
I recieved a really nice
I'm loving it :)
Lot's of new pictures
Hence the reason for all the pics
On this blog post.

And Comin Up:
New York City!
In two days I'll be in
The big, bad apple!
I'm going with my dear Mom
To see NINE Broadway shows
And go touring!
I can't wait!

Now finally, I've had time
To sit down and catch a breath
And blog, of course
So for now... I'm off to bed.
Rehearsal tomorrow, bright and early!
Goodnight, world :)