I'm a costume designer, makeup artist, teacher, mom, knitter, baker, want-to-learn-how-to-do-it-all

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I'm a costume designer, makeup artist, teacher, mom, sewer, knitter, baker, want-to-learn-how-to-do-it-all, blogging, Costumed Beagle enthusiast. I am not always pleasant, although through intensive cupcake therapy I have learned not to throw knives at people anymore.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Portfolio Updates

I know you all have prolly had your fill of Seussical over the last few weeks, what with me and the costumes and the missus performing and Face Book updates and Instagram rehearsals and all, but I just updated my portfolio with production photos.  Take a peek!



Sunday, April 27, 2014

Survival Mode

For nearly six weeks now we've been in what I like to refer fondly as "survival mode" at our house.  Typically they are not this long, but we've had a perfect storm of events all conspiring to take us down.  Luckily we are sturdier than we look.

You all knew I was working on Seussical?  Yes.  And that Anna was in it?  Yes.  So while I was busy trying to get 200 costumes on stage, my dearest had rehearsal every night in Utah County for a month.  Did you know that I live in SLC?  yeah.  About 40 minutes away.  EVERY NIGHT.  And then performances (with matinees) for a week.  We made it through that , but before, and immediately after and still I am also interviewing for jobs ALL OVER THE FREAKIN' COUNTRY.  Seriously.  So for 3 or 4 days at a stretch, I've had to be gone (I'm leaving on my third this week).  Getting people to cover my classes, getting people to take care of The Citizens and run them around to all their stuff...and also do these costumes and teach and get ready for finals and blah blah blah blah.  You get the picture.  I'm sure you also go into Survival mode at your house, it is just for different reasons.

So what does survival mode look like:

  • The bare minimum of laundry gets done and you have to fish it out of the clothes basket yourself.  And if you don't tell me you need a particular something for a particular something?  It didn't get washed.  
  • Weeks of freezer or easy prep food.  Corn dogs, burritos, easy mac,  hot pockets, toast, bagels and applesauce.  Basically stuff kids can fix themselves.  Hardly nutritious.  This was novel for about a week and then they felt the gravity of the situation.
  • The basics got cleaned.  As in, the dishwasher was loaded and run every 3 days and then instead of unloading it, you just use the clean dishes from it.
  • Huck did not get a bath.  We all suffered for this one.
  • Homework.  You are practically on your own.  
  • Hair?  Yeah right.  It takes me 40 minutes to blow out those locks and then another 10 to curl them up again.  It has been pony tail/bun/tied up-o-rama round these parts.

The only thing that saved me was the fact the I neither had to shovel snow nor mow the lawn during this little spate.

I like to think that if you stopped by my house at this point you would merely think I must be really busy and not be grossed out, but I've been in such a fog, I really couldn't say.  And I'm pretty sure the kids still bathed regularly.  So there's at least that.

I'm grateful that we're nearly through.  I cooked dinner tonight for the first time in weeks, and The Citizens each walked through the kitchen and wanted to know who was coming over for dinner....the concept of me cooking for them had already grown so foreign.  But really, I got caught up on laundry this weekend, I have finals to give and grade this week, have one more interview to go and then we can settle into me not cooking for them by choice.

So what do you do when you have to prioritize?  How do you make do?  What do you let go?

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

10 Songs to Empower You Today

So I've been thinking a lot about empowerment lately.  Since this is my year, and I feel like I've taken life by horns (so to speak) I've been thinking about how we personally empower ourselves to do good things and make good things happen.  Good things for our lives, our families, our careers.  I know a lot of women who are awesome, but we all have down days, or years...

And while I know we don't always have things in control, I think attitude plays a big role.  So, if you don't feel up to the task today, here are a few songs to help you get there.  And I should say that I made this list thinking specifically of empowering the women in my life, but if they help someone else get through the day...awesome.

You're welcome.

Now go gettem'.

Girl on Fire
Alicia Keys

Katy Perry

Brick House
The Commodores

Best Day of My Life
American Authors

Can't Hold Us Down
Christina Aguilera

I Will Survive
Gloria Gaynor

Good Life
One Republic

Sara Bareilles

Christina Aguilera

and just for fun....
These Boots Were Made for Walkin'
Nancy Sinatra

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


Seussical opens today at the Covey Center in Provo.  This is my fourth year doing costume for Center Stage Youth Performers, and surprisingly, this may be my favorite show for them yet.  I think the costumes turned out pretty cute overall and the show itself is pretty fun.

I'm actually not a huge fan of this particular show, but these kids have done a great job this year.  And I'm not just saying that because The Missus is in it this year. But she's pretty cute too.  She plays a who, a thing and a circus clown, and it is terrifying because she seems soooooo in her element.  And I can only blame myself.  And she's um....very, um....very loud.  I'm backstage, but went out into the lobby tonight to get a signal on my phone and despite the fact that there were dozens of kids singing on stage and I was listening through closed doors I could still hear her particular voice.  

If you have smallish people, this is the perfect show to take them to.  An hour and twenty minutes, starts at 7:00, so you are out the door by 8:30, full of lots of fun Seuss characters they may recognize and singing and tons of color and movement.  No dull moments.

You can buy tickets online here. It runs through Saturday.

In the meantime, here are some more pics from dress rehearsal.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Mother of a Teen

It happened.  (Or to be technical will happen in 5 minutes....)  I am the mother of a teenage son.
I never intended for this to happen.  And in recent months have begun to suspect I might actually murder my own child out of frustration.  Yet, he lives to reach this milestone.  And to be fair, he  is a sweet, kind, generous soul even if he absolutely refuses to turn in homework he has already done.

Happy Birthday baby boy.  *sigh*

Sunday, April 13, 2014


GUYS.  I met Ira Glass.  Here is proof.  This is also a rare picture of me because I'm not terribly photogenic and refuse to let my picture be taken, but I did in really bad lighting because: IRA GLASS.

If you do not know who that is you are dead to me.
If you would like to pretend you know who that is until such time as you can google him and listen to all 522 episodes of This American Life, I will accept that.

Also, this is my friend Megan whom I lured to Utah from Portland with promises of Ira.   When your friend lives in Portland you have to pull out the big guns to get her to visit.  It worked because she is as nerdy as I am and has as big a voice crush on Mr. Ira as I do.

We got to go to a meet n' greet before the show which is where this pic was taken and we were quite frankly some of the youngest people in the room.  Apparently public radio is really for the 60+ crowd which makes us nerdy and OLD.  Megan waved at him across the room and he came over to talk to us, but then we got star struck and Megan said something about pickles and then the conversation got weird and he just stared at us quietly for a minute and then we took the picture and he went on to people who can hold actual conversations.  He had strep throat so he didn't shake our hands, but I would have risked it.

*Note to self: think of things to ask and say before hand when you are going to meet famous and interesting people so you look less stupid.

We then sort of stalked Doug Fabrizio around the room a bit before we left.

The show was great.  He operated the whole thing from an ipad mini in his hand.  And he danced.   HE DANCED.  And looked like he enjoyed every moment of it.

And now, pretty much, my life is complete.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Throwback Thursday: Wisconsin

Did you know I used to live in Wisconsin?  Yup.  I went there in the summer of 1998 as a first hand for American Player's Theatre in Spring Green, and ended up staying and taking a job in corporate America designing soft goods for the home dept. of Lands' End.  As in sheets, quilts, kids bedding, blankets and towels.  It was an interesting job.

We bought a little house in Mineral Point (pop. 2112) that had been built in 1912.  Our first Christmas we went to a tree farm and chopped our own tree down.  And then when we got it home it was too big to fit through the front door.  So we had a porch tree.  Our house looked so cute.

When we had to put that house up for sale two years later (in November-for another move) we used these pictures.  Our house sold in 5 days.

I can't say I loved living in WI, but I loved so many of our friends that we made there and miss them!  They need to come visit us.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Eating Out: Fats Grill

Fat Grill
 2182 S Highland Dr, Salt Lake City, UT 84106 (Sugarhouse)

Ok.  First off, I've been trying to diversify my date nights with The Citizens.  If we get the opportunity for me to take one of them out on a date night, I usually let them pick, but I bought a Groupon to this place because it was advertising great burgers (which Mr. Beene loves) and is right around the corner from his art class (convenient).

So last week Mr. Beene and I went, we were there early-ish, but discovered immediately that it was a bar.  The Groupon made it sound like a burger joint that served beer, while this was clearly a bar that served burgers.  They did have a separate dining area and minors could eat there until 7:00, which was fine as we had a full hour to eat and go. It also looks like this is a place for local bands to perform. It is probably a great place for a younger hipper crowd than me.  But we came for food, so it didn't matter so much.

The menu looked pretty good-lots of burgers panini, pizza, wings...but after waiting twenty minutes (and it was not busy) I finally went to the bar to see if we were supposed to order there.  Since I had already talked to a member of the wait staff about having a minor with me and they had informed me that we needed to leave by 7:00 I would have thought getting our order so we could get out would have been a priority.  Not so.  They seemed surprised and said "Oh.  I didn't know you wanted to order food."  We were reading menus, sitting in the dining area for fun...

After giving our orders, the food came out pretty promptly and looked pretty yummy.  I had opted for a bacon-blue burger and Mr. Beene for a traditional bacon cheeseburger.  Sour-dough buns, nice presentation.
Taste, however, was pretty mediocre.  The fries were semi-burnt, dry and hard.  I think they may have been baked, which is great, but they weren't done very well.  The burger and bun were also dry with the bun tasting a bit stale and the burger overcooked.  The bacon and blue bits were tasty but didn't really compensate for the dry burger.  She also brought me a regular instead of diet coke.  

I think individually, none of those things would have bothered me, but when grouped together does not equal a good experience.  I had a great time chatting with Mr. Beene, but we are unlikely to go back.  I'll bet they are a great place to check out the local music scene, but I wouldn't go for the food.  When I asked Mr. Beene what he thought, he shrugged and said it was "just ok."  It really isn't too hard to please a growing teenage boy, so that is probably the worst recommendation of all.

In all, Mr. Beene gave it 1/2 thumbs-up.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Throwback Thursday: Grand Canyon

These pics are from a camping trip we took to the Grand Canyon in 2003.  Citizen #1 was just 2.  Man, he was pretty much the cutest kid ever.
It is hard to believe he will be 13 in just a couple of weeks!

Have a Great Weekend, y'all!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

And That's When I Realized I Was Going To Be Famous...

Well, Maybe not quite famous.  But remember last week when I told you about the projects I'm working on?  Yeah, well one of them was The Count of Monte Cristo.  Yes.  You remember.

WELL.  Today an official press release on Playbill announced the show and mentioned its European and Asian versions and how cool the writer and composer are and THEN IT LISTED THE ADDITIONAL PRODUCTION TEAM MEMBERS. Who are clearly just as awesome.  CLEARLY.

ANd GUesS wHAt???  (This is me being all apoplectic) There I am in official print (well not really print, it is the online version, but still...no need to get all persnickety) listed right after super famous Nathan the choreographer and the musical director.

I showed it to my kids, who for some unknown reason read each and every program of each and every show we ever go to and are familiar with the Playbill logo that is on the Broadway Across America show programs I take them to.  Anna slowly shook her head and said "MOM.  You are famous."

That's right baby, I sure am.