Monday, April 30, 2007

living in sin

As my mother would say, I am officially living in sin. We moved Nick's furniture to a temporary storage unit on Saturday, and his TV, clothes, and a few other things came with him to live with me in Evanston for the next two months. I'm not sure how all these things managed to fit in my tiny apartment, but somehow, everything found a place and the apartment doesn't look too shabby. So far, it's been wonderful having a "live-in" (again, Mom's words): today Nick had chicken stir-fry ready and waiting for me when I got home from a very long day at 8:30 pm. He does dishes and laundry, he irons, and if it weren't for the little black sock fuzzies I find on every surface of the apartment, I'd say he's practically perfect in every way! (I'm working hard to find him a new brand of sock--certainly there must be a sock out there that does not produce copious amounts of sock fuzz that kind of look like spiders and freak me out). We are now recruiting people for our July move -- you scratch our back, we'll scratch yours (meaning....PLEASE help us move and we'll help you move in return).
So I survived moving day, now I just have to survive recital week. There are a few crucial rehearsals in the hall this week, mostly to check balance with my instrumentalists, but for the most part, I'm feeling good about it. The pollen count as of late has been wreaking havoc on my sinuses, but I've been neti-potting and downing mucinex and sudafed like there's no tomorrow. I've got my gown, the reception food is planned (just not bought), and recital posters created by Nick. The parentals plus Grandma, Elaine and Tom are coming to town, so it will be quite the party!
Additionally this week, I am singing on a masterclass tomorrow night with famous coach and pianist John Wustman. I have a terrific dress, and I'm planning to totally rock out on the Brahms lieder I'm doing--Der Tod das ist die kuehle Nacht. Should be good times. Other than that, I'm spending my time honing my skills as third-to-last Carmelite nun to get guillotined, and doing lots of yoga to create more peace and love within me. I've also decided to boycott eyeliner.

So, pray for my soul this week: for forgiveness of living in sin until Nick makes an honest woman of me, and for a good recital and not too much pollen in the air.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Many exciting things happened this weekend:

a. I purchased my recital gown!!! It does NOT look like this:

But just about every dress in the store did. Rather, it's yellow and gorgeous, and I look like Belle from Beauty and the Beast. Now all I have to do is finish memorizing the music...

2. It was actually nice enough to frolic around the city. And frolic we did. A tapas date on Friday, hanging out downtown on Saturday, mini-golf in the 'burbs on Sunday, and a lovely Sunday dinner at Hop Leaf with our friends Julia and Ryan. (Makes me feel old to have double dates with the marrieds, but the amount of beer consumed was enough to make me feel young again). Here's a photo from mini-golf (at which Nick beat me we're even, I rock at bowling, he's good at mini-golf):

(I spent a very long time trying to figure out how to rotate this picture, and I just can't do it. Just turn your head, please).

d. And the most exciting (for me anyway)...WE BOUGHT A NEW BED. For the entirety of our relationship, save for the time spent in Greece, we have crammed over twelve feet of person into a full size bed, night after night. In case you were wondering how that was going....NOT WELL. It was a fight to the death every night, legs and arms thrashing about, trying to find a comfortable position. But starting tomorrow, we will have an extra half foot of bed to ease us through the night, plenty of room for all our limbs. A glorious queen sized bed will be delivered to my apartment at some point tomorrow. Here is the one we chose: at Bedding Experts. I have a strong feeling that this bed is going to change our lives. I'll give a full review on Friday.

Every time I tell someone that Nick is moving in to my studio apartment for two months, they say "Oh, you're going to end up like Carrie and Aidan (on Sex and the City), screaming at each other and living amongst boxes piled to the celing." Can't say the thought didn't cross my mind, but I think we have everything figured out. Nick rented a storage unit for his larger items to live until we move to a bigger place in July, and I'm doing my best to clear out some clothes and make closet space for his stuff. It's going to be close quarters, of that I'm certain, but we will manage. OH the other piece of big news is that Nick got two jobs already!! One working for a dentist on the west side and one at Brite Smile in Schamburg one day a week. YAY my teeth are going to be so white!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


Lately, I've been a little obsessed with researching dogs on the internet...because I REALLY REALLY want to get one this summer. I found this awesome website that has a page or two listing nearly every detail about every dog breed in existence. I'm leaning toward a Bichon/Yorkie mix or a Bichon/Shih Tzu mix or a Bichon/Poodle mix.

Just for fun, I looked up the page on dachsunds to see if their description of temperment matched the late great Royal Duchess Lady Lyday's (our family's beloved dachsund who passed away two years ago at the age of 15). Here is what it said:

Lively and affectionate; proud and bold, almost rash. Tenacious. Can be willful and clownish. Curious and mischievous, they are very clever and may attempt to train the owner rather than allow the opposite. Devoted to his family, some fanciers feel the long-haired variety is calmer than the other two types. The wire-haired variety is more outgoing and clown-like. All are slightly difficult to train. Dachshunds are good dogs to travel with. They are best with older, considerate children and are moderately protective. These little dogs like to bark (their barks are surprisingly loud for their size) and are compulsive diggers. They are generally okay with other pets, however, they can be jealous, irritable, obstinate and very quick to bite. Sometimes they will refuse to be handled. They should not be over fed, for this breed tends to gain weight quickly.

While she was a wonderful pet, Duchess had some quirks, most notably, she hated anyone who wasn't in our family. She was known to chase grown men around the house, nibbling at their heels. "Sometimes they will refuse to be handled"--this is a major understatement in Duchess' case. Weighing in at a mere 7 pounds during her peak of good health, it was very easy to pick up Duchess and put her wherever you wanted her, but if you weren't my mom, dad, sister, or I, good luck with that one. She'd attempt to bite your hand off before she'd let you pick her up. "These little dogs like to bark"--also a major understatement. When a stranger entered the house (or even a friend who had been over about a hundred times), Duchess would bark at them relentlessly until someone just put her outside to make it stop.

But she was a sweet and wonderful dog, and I remember many a sick day home from school on the couch when she would curl up next to me on the sofa and nuzzle her little nose into my arm or leg. We had a lot of fun with Duchess, and she was a part of our family. Rest in peace Duchess, rest in peace.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

you need to see this

If you haven't laughed today, you will now.

bitch please

After reading the reluctant receptionist's post today, I began to evaluate my own behavior as of late. Northwestern has turned me into a rather awful person recently, and though I'm trying my hardest to be good (ok, maybe not my hardest), I still find myself acting like a complete bitch for most of the hours I'm at school. There are a few reasons for this:

1. I made a very poor decision to accept an EXTREMELY small role in the upcoming production of Dialogues of the Carmelites at NU. This after being beaten out for the large part I should have gotten by two idiot, flaky, 20-year-old juniors. All because the school allowed the dumb shit guest "director" they brought in to direct this production have free reign of casting, and he is apparently deaf and retarded. Now I am forced to sit through these rehearsals listening to poor singing, poor preparation, and generally unprofessional behavior. Has there been lots of eye rolling, whispering with my friend Ash, magazine reading, and general disdain on my part during these rehearsals? Maybe.

2. My decision to get out of the Mary Kay business has apparently given a few people at school (not naming names, but I don't think they read this blog anyway) reason to dislike me. I realize that their master plan of wealth and world-domination has had a minor setback thanks to my decision to get out, but please. Not only do I feel scammed and used and STUPID for getting caught up in this business, but the things I read on the internet continue to creep me out. Check out The Pink Truth and you'll see what I mean. Now I have to find time in my busy schedule to ship back my inventory (luckily I get 90% of my money back and get to keep the free products). If deciding to forgo a "business opportunity" is a reason to stop being my friend, then...fine. You want to play this game? Bring it. (Cue bitchy Emily behavior).

3. There is, in general, a high quotient of really lame and annoying people at Northwestern. In reality, about 80% of singers are lame and annoying to begin with, but I think NU rolls in at around 93%.

The underlying reason behind this behavior really stems from my amazing ability to beat up on myself relentlessly. Geez, I should have a masters in Psychology, not singing! Somehow, I imagine that all of these things are my fault when they are, in fact, merely the result of unfortunate luck and being preyed upon by crazy people in the beauty industry. The fact that I am able to come to that conclusion is an amazingly huge step forward. And dealing with horrible people, well, I'll just go ahead and steal a line from Robert:" i try to accept them for who they are, and remember that they’re a person just like my friends or my sister or my parents, not just a collection of behaviors that happen to annoy me." Couldn't have said it better. And I am trying. Maybe not succeeding, but certainly trying.

I feel better already. And now I will leave you with my favorite TV sitcom "let's calm down" lines: SERENITY NOW (I actually say this to myself numerous times a day, and then I think about George's dad on Seinfeld saying it, and oddly--it makes me feel better) and "3-2-1, 1-2-3, what the heck, is bothering me?" And if you can tell me what that's from, you will be officially on the list of people I like.

Thursday, April 12, 2007


Ich bin so glucklich. Don't expect to see me for awhile...

Monday, April 09, 2007

Check, Check, and CHECK.

One (1) crazy experimental opera. CHECK.

One (1) "let's make Emily sing high notes until her head pops off" Easter Sunday church service. CHECK

One (1) recital permission passed. CHECK.

Phew, that was tiring. During Saturday night's performance of Ursularia (the experimental opera), I pretty much put on a clinic in "relative pitch" and somehow pulled a G natural out of my ass at a very crucial point in the opera. It was either luck or God...probably luck. Sorry, God. Easter Sunday was...Easter Sunday, complete with Hallelujah chorus and ridiculously exalted hymns with random high C sharps thrown in at the end. But Holy Week is over, and we can all breathe a sigh of relief for another year.

The recital permission could not have gone any better today. I was really happy. I stayed up pretty late last night doing some last minute memorizing, and then they only heard one piece because there were seven permissions today. That really took the pressure off! And now I have a lovely four weeks to leisurely put the final touches on my recital, plus create a great reception complete with margaritas and guacamole, in celebration of Cinco de Mayo. So don't forget, my masters recital, Cinco de Mayo at 6:15 pm! It's official! (Don't worry, I'll remind you atleast four times before then).

Now comes the time where I retreat to my futon, watch some tube, and eat chocolate. I love it when I've just finished lots of big things. It justifies some serious laziness.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

I can't think of a weekend in recent history where I've been more productive. Hermit-ing really paid off: the stress has been diminishing significantly this week. The recital music is coming along splendidly; yesterday I had the first rehearsal with my violist for the Bolcom chamber piece I'm doing, and it went really well. I'm feeling better about the "experimental" opera that's going up this weekend. I have found that if I just trust myself to pull pitches out of my ass, I usually do relatively well. I'm always wondering why composers who write this crazy music don't just insist on hiring a singer with perfect pitch. I guess maybe they don't really care if you sing a B or a B flat?

In other news, last night was my debut party as an Independent Beauty Consultant for Mary Kay! The turnout was a little less than I'd hoped for, but I felt that the party was a great success and a great learning experience for my first time out--not to mention tons of fun! I held the party at Ethel's Chocolate Lounge and had two giant pots of fondue for my guests. Chocolate and beauty products--pretty much every girl's dream evening! Check out my website at The products are truly fabulous (the microderm abrasion kit rocks my world on a bi-weekly basis), and I am especially fond of what the business stands for: empowering women. And not in a
crazyin yourfacebraburning sort of way, but more of a Icanbebeautifulandmakealotofmoney sort of way. Let me know if you have any questions about anything on the site. And for the month of April, for my blogger readers only, $10 off your purchase of $50 or more!

In closing, I thought I would post a few more pics from my recent trip to Greece.

Day trip to Porto Rafti:

Road trip to Delphi and Arahova (the Greek Aspen!)

Exploring the ruins at Delphi:

Japanese tourists (complete with Louis Vuitton umbrellas and white gloves):

Ancient stadium at Delphi:

Ancient theater at Delphi:

More ruins:

The oracle at Delphi:

Arahova by night (where we stayed):

Arahova by day:

Angelo playing with his new pet, the hamster Squeaky:

Angelo loves his Uncle Nicaaaaa (he can say Nick's name now and yells it constantly!--it's so cute!)

Enjoy the photos!