Monday, March 17, 2014

catch ya later, 20s!


It happened. I turned 30 today. And you know, what? I feel great about it! Truly. Maybe it's because when I turned 20, I was in rehearsals for the Diary of Anne Frank and I was playing Anne who is 13-15 in the play. Now, I'm performing in Les Mis as Cosette who is 16ish. So, in show years, I've really only aged a year or so this past decade. I'll take it!

Yesterday, my cast was unbelievably kind to me. The ladies in the cast decided they were gonna find ways to tell me, "Happy birthday!" on stage without it being noticeable. As Valjean and Cosi went around giving money to the poor, each lady accepted their coin with, "Happy birthday!!". I loved it. I don't know why, but it made me feel special. Others in the cast wished me well and gave me little gifts.

As I was driving home, I was overcome with gratitude for the kind souls in this show, cast and crew alike. Not only for being nice to me because of my birthday, but because they are always awesome. Then it snowballed into thinking about all the wonderful people I've met throughout my life. That led to me ugly crying all the way home. Seriously. I have swollen little eyes because of it today. If you are reading this, you are most likely one of the people I've met over the years who have impacted my life for the better and that I cried about (feeeeelings). I sincerely thank you all for the love, listening, laughs and friendships you've given me. Even if we only crossed paths for a short time. It has stayed with me probably more than you/I realize. 

Anyway, here I am, 30. So glad to be older and wiser. My 20s, especially the early years, were a time that I'm THRILLED I don't have to be stuck in. I wouldn't trade them in for anything (that whole "trials make you who you are thing"), I'm just happy I don't have to stay in that time/place and be an insecure twenty-something trying to figure out who I am. It's exciting to be in a new decade to have new experiences in, confidently. Perhaps the confidence comes from the teenage boys that yelled, "You're HOT!", to me as I was driving home from church today. Should I tell them that A.) I'm taken and B.) I could feasibly be their mother? Nah....
I felt like a grandma today, because I did my very first kettle bell workout yesterday and my legs don't wanna work. I've been shuffling around all day. Going down stairs is especially entertaining. Grandma.
Mr. G threw me a chill gathering that I could be in my sweats for. Exactly what I wanted. Now, if only he had followed me around tickling my back all day....then it would have been perfection. (wink) He did, however, put this giant picture of me on our door that was used in The Secret Garden almost 2 years ago. EMBARRASSING!!!




Me. Selfie. Age 30. With sleepy cry eyes.

THANK YOU for all the birthday wishes today. You added to the cry eyes above. I'm getting all choked up again....goodnight! 

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Influenster J'Adore VoxBox

So, I'm part of this website called Influenster that monitors your social media and if they think you are cool, they'll send you boxes of free goodies to try out and review for them (I still have some invites if anyone wants to join). I guess they thought this weirdo would be a good choice for their Valentine's box. Here is a little run down of my thoughts on the products I got. 


Natural Lash by Kiss

Now, I've worn too many fake eyelashes to count being a theater girl and all, so I know a thing or two about them. I LOOOOVE these. They actually do look natural (as promised) and give you a hint of a boost. The look is so natural, that you can get away with wearing them with your every day look. I've been giving Cosette a little extra summthin' summthin' with them. Pretty sure that's why Marius falls in love. 
My sad tech eyes sporting Kiss Lashes





I've been wanting to find a mask that I love and even though this one made my skin feel pretty soft, I'm still on the hunt for my soul mask. Usually, masks have a creamy consistency, or hold themselves together, but this one was pure liquid the first time around. I gave the bottle a squeeze and it went everywhere (I'm feeling awkward about my phrasing of this review...). Applying it was more mess than it was worth....the first time. I gave it a second chance and I found some of the more solid clay, I guess, and it wasn't as liquid-y. So, I would mush the bottle before you open it to get a more consistent consistency.  Still, I probably wouldn't ever purchase it. Sorry, Boots!




Flat-ironing my hair isn't normally my go-to look. I prefer some Beyonce hair. That being said, if I do plug in that flat-iron, I'm gonna spray some of this in my hair. It made my hair silky smooth and didn't weigh it down. Sometimes flat-iron sprays can make my hair feel coated in greasy product, but this product just helped my hair look awesome. It's a quality product for not a lot of dollars. Boom!


Um, it's bite-sized chocolate. What more can you ask for? Classics never go outta style. Nom nom nom!



Mr. G always slathers the lotion on and I usually end up putting in on his back. NO LONGER! He can do it himself! It definitely smells like a dude, so unless you wanna smell manly, it's not for ladies (they do have a non-dude version). He likes it for the most part, but it is really cold. Especially, if you're using it right out of a warm shower. Also, since it's a spray, if you miss your body that means it's either on the floor or on the counter and it's pretty slick. 

Well, there you have it! My first Influenster VoxBox review! I'm starting to get addicted to trying new products. Maybe it's because I'm subconsciously having a meltdown because I'm turning 30 on Sunday..... Bring it!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

dress betrayal

I get to wear some beautiful dresses in Les Mis. This one is no exception. It may even be my fave. That being said, it has betrayed me twice thus far. 

The first evil betrayal happened during our very first dress rehearsal. I'm in a few ensemble numbers before I transform from this:
To Cosette:
I just wanted you to see how scary I am before I get to clean up.

Anyway, the first episode was during my first scene transformed into Cosette. Valjean and I have to make a hasty get away in order to not be detected by the antagonist, Javert. During our escape, we run down some tiny wooden stairs. This being our first dress rehearsal, it was also the first time running down wooden stairs (which were slippery at the time) in my rather large dress. 

This gorgeous devil dress blocked my eyes from the first stair and I didn't fully step on said stair. I caught it with the slippery middle section of my shoe which immediately shot my foot in the air in front of me (and consequentially flung off my shoe), and propelled my other foot into to flight along with it. 

With both feet in the air, I could only catch the rest of the stairs with my tailbone. 

THE HORROR!!!!

An expletive was said. Loudly. 

I laid there in shock, in my unwilling snow-angel position, wondering what the damage was. Luckily, my wits came back to me and I hobbled along to the green room where I was greeted by the stage managers and producers. All that could be done for my hurt tailbone and pride was to ice my tush and drug up...with ibuprofen. 

Later, the actor that plays Valjean said he probably could have caught me if it hadn't been for my large dress.

Rachel: 0 Dress:1

The second time (and hopefully the last) happened on an evening I ate a Costa Vida sweet pork salad before the show. Mistake. 

WARNING: TMI ALERT!!!!!!

So after I fall in love with Marius at first sight (see first picture), I get to sing a song about it and about how my life is weird (in a much more eloquent way). As I'm singing the lyrics,

 "This change, can people really fall in love so fast"

My corset pushed out a pork salad gas without my consent! 

DISCLAIMER: MANY PEOPLE FART ON STAGE, OK!!!! STOP JUDGING ME. 

OK, most times, when one is wearing a dress with girth, the petticoat and all the fabric of the skirt protects your need to release from leaking out to the unsuspecting noses of the audience. And on most stages, the audience is much farther away than the audience Hale Centre Theatre. 

After the lyrics above, I sing:

"What's the matter with you, Cosette"

The irony is not lost on me. 

That's also the moment I go sit on a bench directly in front of the front row. 
(I guess the patrons couldn't be bothered to throw away their napkins)

Cue dress betrayal! 

Right when I sat down, the dress released the toxic sweet pork fumes. 

I'm still singing my little song and while I'm singing:

"In my life, there are so many questions and answers that somehow seem wrong"

I hear the murmuring behind me, "What's that smell?!?!"

I DIIIIIEEEEDDDDDD!!!

You guys, it was so rancid. Think sulfuric Yellowstone on speed. 

Not only did they obviously smell it, but out of the corner of my eye, I saw one dude point to me. POINT! HE KNEW IT WAS MEEEEEE!

I hate you, dress. You're supposed to keep all my secrets/flatulence in your beautiful fullness!!!

Rachel: 0 Dress: 2

Friday, February 7, 2014

My man the knight


One time, my man let this other man know that being rude to me was not an option. What's funny to me about this story, is that it happened in the chapel of our church. 

Rewind to a few months back. 

Our sacrament meeting went nearly 30 minutes over. UGH! It is normal after a church meeting to talk with other members of the congregation for a few minutes afterwards or on your way out of the chapel, right? Right. Well, even though our meeting went over, we still had our small convos. Most of the pews had emptied and Mr. G went to the back to have talk to some dudes and I was towards to front chatting with my friend Connie about her poor little dog, Lucy, who had just passed away. A few minutes into our convo a family from the next ward to meet in the chapel walked in. 

They were there about 20 minutes early. Good for them!

Like I said, most of the pews were empty. In fact, I think all of the pews were empty. This family chose to sit in the pew Connie and I standing by in the aisle. The father said, "Excuse me" for us to let him in and we obliged. We even stepped a foot or two back to give proper space, but we carried on our sad convo about Lucy and how Connie's little girls were devistated about her death. 

About 2 minutes after the early birds sat down, the father once again turned to us. This time he said sternly, "I bring my family early to church so we can sit in the chapel and to be reverent and feel the spirit. It's extremely difficult to focus on that goal when you are irreverently talking behind us. Your meeting has been over for quite some time and you should be in Sunday School. The chapel is not an appropriate for conversations."

I think Connie and I probably looked like a pair of deer caught in headlights. We were stunned that we had been chastised by this complete stranger. Being the introverted lady that I am, I normally don't speak up for myself, but I couldn't believe he talked to us so rudely and self-righteously.

My response, "Our sacrament meeting actually just got out a few minutes ago, so, yes, I'm talking with my friend for a minute. I don't believe we were being irreverent, sir."

Rudey McRuderude, "I'm sorry, but it is and it's distracting."

Me, "I'm sure you're sorry, but there is a nicer way of asking us to take our conversation somewhere else." 

Cue our exit.

Of course, I went right to the back to tell my man about the interaction that just happened. Connie and I relayed the scene and Mr. G said, "Hmm mmm. Not OK."

He marched his handsome self down to the lone family, tapped the man on the shoulder, and said nicely something like, "You can't be rude to my wife. Especially since we're newlyweds, I gotta do my husband duty and defend her. So, it's not cool to be rude to her."

I think the man had a realization that he was a little outta control for the situation and apologized to Mr. G. Afterwards, we took our rude/irreverent/unrighteous group out the hallway. A few minutes later, the man sheepishly came over to me and apologized. I accepted. 

Turns out, he used to be the bishop of his ward and his big thing was not talking in the chapel and immediately going to classes afterwards as quickly and quietly as possible. To each their own I suppose.....

The whole thing wasn't really that big of a deal (it's not like he was swearing like crazy or beating on me), but it did teach me that my man would defend my honor no matter what. Win! 


Saturday, January 25, 2014

shameless plug alert part 2

OK. So I have a few things I need to tell you about. 



First, my show. I've talked about it a bit, but I really want you guys to come see it. Tickets are flying off the interwebs (there isn't really a shelf for them to fly off of so....) and I wanna make sure you get a chance to see it. It runs Feb 14-April 19 and I perform Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday nights and ALSO all the 4 pm matinees on Saturdays (I'll also be doing some weekday 4 pm matinees. If you call the box office, they'll know which ones). You can get tickets by clicking here or by calling 801-984-9000. I play older Cosette and I'm in awe of the talent in this show. Seriously, everyone is crazy good. Intimidating actually (that's a blog for another day). Plus, JVJ looks like this under his prisoner/mayor costumes. You're welcome. 
Sorry, Casey!

Secondly, my husband (who also has awesome muscles) works for the great company called Dress Code. They make custom suits and dress shirts. You guys, if there is a guy in your life or you are the guy in your life, you're gonna wanna check them out. Before Mr. G worked for them, he got his wedding suit made from them and he looked like freaking James Bond. Like the really hot Daniel Craig version of James Bond (drool). Wedding season approaches so if you want to look super fly or want your man to look super fly for your event contact my man for more info ASAP (they take 6-8 weeks). Email him at ghansen@dresscodecustom.com. They are about the same cost as suits you buy off the rack, but you design them and they are made to your exact measurements.  Holla!
Mr. G looking hawt!

There was something else I wanted to talk about, but now I can't remember. It must be the old age setting in (turning 30 in less than 2 months. AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!) Maybe I'll remember and it'll give me something to blog about. 

Cheers!


Monday, January 6, 2014

easy peasy bread sticks/pizza dough



Yesterday, I made bread sticks to go along with the white chili simmering in the Crockpot. Both were a mistake. Not because they weren't delicious (which they most definitely were), but because they both had their side affects. The bread sticks I couldn't stay away from and ate half a pan of them. I have a carb problem. There, I said it. As for the white chili.....let's just say Mr. G and I should probably invest in the Better Marriage Blanket.

What's so great about the bread stick recipe is that it is pretty quick and very versatile. I like to put a generous amount of garlic salt, parsley, and Parmesan  cheese on top most of the time, but you can really put whatever you want.  Like turning them into cheesy bread, or making them more of a treat with cinnamon and sugar. The Carrabba's mix might also be delicious!

The recipe comes from my BYU cooking class which I highly recommend to those that are attending BYU. By far one of my favorite classes. And if you can, take it from Dana Adcock. She is the best!

INGREDIENTS:
1 1/4 C warm water
1 Tablespoon yeast
2 Tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3-3 1/2 C flour
1/4 C butter, melted
whatever topping you want

DIRECTIONS:
Dissolve yeast in warm water in bowl of mixer.

Add sugar, salt and 2 1/2 cups flour. Mix to form dough. (You'll want to use your dough hook)

If more flour is needed, add up to 1 cup more a little at a time. 

Mix about 3 minutes.

Let dough rest for 10 minutes. 

Put half of the melted butter in a jelly roll pan.

Using a rolling pin or hands (I think hands is easier), flatten dough into buttered jelly roll pan. 

Spread remaining butter over the top of the dough.

Use a pizza cutter to cut dough in strips. I usually cut it once lengthwise and then however many times I feel like it the other way just depending on how thick I want them. 

Sprinkle with desired topping. 

Let rest another 10 minutes.

Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes.

Cut with pizza cutter again and serve.....or eat all of them yourself like me!

For pizza, just add pizza toppings and bake in jelly roll pan or split the dough in two and to make two round pizzas to bake on a pizza stone. It's the same timing and same oven temp for pizza. I like to put a little bit of corn meal on the bottom of the pizza stone to make it seem more like restaurant pizza. 

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 in photo review

This year has been one to remember. From moving from NYC to Utah, from theater to film, from engaged to married. It's been a goodie. Here are some of my favorite memories of this year in pictures.

WARNING: THERE ARE A LOT OF WEDDING PICS (It was kind of a big deal, OK....) 








































Now, I'm not the resolution making kind of girl, but over the last little while I've been trying to be more kind, patient, genuine, and less selfish. It's a work in progress. Here's to a fantastic 2014!!!

PS. I'm pretty proud of myself for keeping a blog for a year. For a lazy/introverted Pisces, that's an achievement.