October 30, 2008

Halloween is Nigh

Needless to say, I am excited for Halloween! Last year I really didn't do anything, just stayed home and passed out organic "treats" to anyone who came by. They weren't too thrilled- probably thought it was a trick. Hopefully Mom has something slightly more artificial this year.
Thankfully, there are many, many options for how to spend the night this time around! I'm hoping some of the Late Service crew can get together and pass out candy (and fliers...) and party like it's hot. If not, I'm going to dress up in my costume and walk around anyway, scoring some caloricious goodness.
Hey, can you believe the fog that's been around here lately? I love it so much. If you don't live here, it's been warm but cooling down during the day and really delightfully foggy at night. The fall season is here here HERE. That means, less Slurpee, more coffee (tea when feeling the vibe). Less ice cream, more warm baked goods...maybe both...! Time to get new fall scarves and maybe a jacket, too. Yay.
So the last couple weeks have been very interesting, and I've come to realize that pretty much all of it in some way or another has a connection with a Mike, Mikey, or Michael! In the last couple weeks:
Mike left for the Army... today actually... :( I'm sad to see this guy go- but he'll be back at Christmas! Hopefully he can hop in and rock the drums at Late Service when he visits.
Mikey is really a splendid amigo. Late-night music and Denny's is the way to go, I'm just saying. Also, he gets full credit for putting me in the disco and Death Cab mood I'm currently rutted in.
Michael (Parker) is the friend I can rely on to boost my self-esteem (calling me a one-woman crime spree helps) and talk to about the fine lines of the law (did you know flicking someone can be a crime? Now that's just silly).
Shout out to the Ms! You keep my world going 'round!
Speaking of awesome people, I just love Jason and Ashley and Tyler Hylton. They rock and are funny and are cool. At the same time. Oh, and drama-free. Now that's a Godsend. All for the monthly price of...just kidding. I hope I'll get to know them better, because it isn't often you meet people who love God and are realistic and whose senses of humor just click...yay!!!
The Late Service has been going well- since Mike left, we'll have our new drummer Lee start with us this Sunday. He practiced a couple songs with us this last week, and he's a solid player, which is good. Now we just have to get to know him...he's a cool guy from the times I've talked to him. (His wife is really nice too, and I've watched their little girl before- adorable!)
Musically, the Late Service is starting to stretch my normal routines and uncool practice of not practicing what I need to on the keyboard... and I'm really happy about it. I tend to stick so much to classical that I don't practice chords, or I'll play the chords I already know and not learn any new ones! This isn't happening too much anymore, because a lot of the new songs for the Late Service are piano driven (and I don't have the base chords to begin with so I have to find it by ear which is also good for me because I'm horrible at it) and I'm determined to stretch myself to make it sound awesome and flawless. I listened to a CD copy of the Late Service and was not satisfied at all with the keys. It sounded exactly like I feel when I'm playing: like I'm using the same patterns for every chord. It's annoying and I'm going to stop it! On the other hand, for one of the new songs, I was surprised that for the first time in my life I knew exactly where the notes were on the keyboard without touching the keys- I could see it in my head. I did a little dance and almost cried. Breakthrough moment for Veralynn!
So what's going on with the flute? Well, I'll tell you. Mr. Rackley officially asked me to play in the Christmas program this last week, to which I emphatically said "Yes, please!" because one of my favorite things in the whole world is playing Christmas songs and I loved playing last year at Grace. Mikey got on me the other day for not practicing like I should, to which I wholeheartedly agree and rather shamefully apologized to my flute today about it. I'm going to clean it and start practicing my Christmas offertories pronto. I have my heart set on playing a jazz version of "We Three Kings" somewhere during the holidays. I've never dared venture into the realm of jazz with my flute before. Ah, I just love how much I don't know about music- that means I have so much more to learn and so much to enjoy and give to others.
Well, this is a HUGE blog and enough to tide you over until I think of anything I've forgotten, so I'm going to sign off now!

October 21, 2008

Fools Rush In

For those of you who remain undaunted by my small font, I've been thinking it's time to post some new life to the blog. There's been no end of living, just no free time to sit and write. Now, I'm in the Academic Resource Center at Hancock (where it's almost unpleasantly chilly- not warm enough to be comfortable and stay awhile, but not quite cold enough to keep students from coming in) and I have about forty-five minutes to type.

As I have the serenades of Frank Sinatra in my ear, the title of this post has two meanings- I listen to good music, and I have the tendency to rush in to good things at the wrong time. I've been thinking so much about Christmas lately...it didn't hit me until very recently that I haven't been taking the time to enjoy Fall. I mean, I have been enjoying it (pumpkin-y goodness everywhere) but not savoring it like I'm looking forward to savoring the Christmas holidays. What to do, what to do! Walking through the Hancock campus today, I appreciated the wind (even though it's warm) and the leaves falling from the tall trees. And this is just the start!Another thing I really love about this time of the year is that my birthday lies squarely between autumn and winter. It's coming, and I'm excited. I probably won't have anything too fancy, just a good time with friends and general merrymaking. And that's enough. More than presents, it's more happy for me to have people together. Yay. But if you'd like to contribute to the Veralynn Barnes & Nobles fund, go right ahead.

Well, there's another blog brewing about the Late Service, ninjas, and Denny's, but that'll be later tonight. 'Til then, adios amigos!


October 7, 2008


Let me start off by saying that, even though Parker said I was creepy when I told him I was looking up what taxidermy is (to see what brainspoons really are), I'm not talking about anything grotesque at all- this band is one of my new faves.

When Krystie invited me to go along with her and Karyn to Ventura to see Callista and "some other bands", I had no idea what we were in for. After Callista finished playing, we saw the band setting up, and I knew we had to at least hear what they sounded like. As soon as their set started, we knew we weren't going anywhere! They were fantastic and I couldn't have been happier to see two chicks onstage- Daphne, middle on the couch above, fronts the band with her sweet vocal skills, and Michelle does backup vocals along with utter guitar amazingness! Chris (sitting next to Daphne) rocked the beat on drums, while Link Oblivion (seated, left, with an awesome name) jams on guitar and Tom plays some cool bass. Together, they were a great live performance. Afterwards, Krystie, Karyn, and I were outside and saw the band coming out of the Ventura Theater and debated for almost ten minutes whether or not to go say hello...so we walked by at least three times...so lame. I totally wish we would've, but I'm not too worried because I have a feeling I'll see them again.

The next day, I got on Myspace and hunted them up...and being the Myspace stalker I am (not really, just doing research...right?) I checked out Daphne's page to find out a little more about her. I was almost blown away by what she had in her About Me section: "I'm an artist and musician, a punk rock conservative Christian - and if you try to figure that out your head will explode...I love science and I believe in truth..." She went on to say that she's learning Chinese! CHINESE! Like me! Aaah, it's too amazing. I'm planning to write her, but I haven't decided what to say yet...

I checked out the other band members' pages also (amazin' stuff, Chris and Daphne are married by the way! That made me happy for some reason)...but the one that really got me was Daphne. I'm pretty sure she's on my list of favorite people now.

YAY for chick rockers...it gives me hope... :)


October 4, 2008

The Weir

So, last night Eric, Krystie, and I went to PCPA to see The Weir. It's a contemporary play set entirely in a pub in Ireland (I'd never seen before a play with only one scene used in the entire performance!). It was held in the Severson Theater, which is much cozier than the Marian Theater- the audience surrounds the stage in a horseshoe shape (the stage is level with the entrance to the theater and some audience members actually walk across the stage to get to their seats) with three sections and only four rows deep in each section. We had really nice seats in the third row of the center section. The play started, and we were entertained by the witty conversation of Jack, Brendan, Jim, Finbar, and Valerie throughout the progression of the evening. One website puts it well: "As four friends enter on a winter's night for a drink and a chat, they are joined by a young woman from Dublin who has just bought an old house in the village. After some craic, they begin telling stories with a supernatural element, each of which becomes increasingly disturbing. The end result of these stories is the revealing of intimate and personal details of each character's lives, something none of them expected to happen."
This was a great way for me to get some insight into contemporary-set plays, as I've never really seen any (mostly classical or "classic" theater). I loved it. Also, one of my favorite PCPA actors was in it (Andrew Philpot)- yay! This is one for the scrapbooks, and I'm definitely planning on volunteering this season at the theater.
Good times!


October 2, 2008

It's October!

That's right folks, the pathway to the holidays. We've only just walked through the gate and are now beginning our saunter down the lane that leads past the excitement of Halloween, my birthday (although that doesn't matter as much to you) and the comfort of Thanksgiving straight into the excitement, joy, and good cheer of the Christmas holidays and into the New Year! It makes me excited just thinking of it. Everything pumpkin is tempting and delightful and right this time of year. Soon, the scents of cinnamon will be prevalent in stores and homes, and that will be the ultimate delight for me, as cinnamon is my favorite scent- right next to respectable old books and fresh baked goods!

The weather is cloudy and wonderful- I'm hoping for a full-out rain soon.

Oh!- and I've decided what I'm going to be for Halloween- Juno! Don't you steal my idea, it will be amazing and I will be able to use her sarcasm to full effect. :)

'Til later!