Say cheese!

I hate having my picture taken. I loathe it. I despise nearly every photo of me (except for some reason, I almost always take a decent picture with my butch big brother, Roy; it’s like magic). So the photo shoot this past weekend was a little nerve-wracking in addition to being lots of good things. Mostly, though, the good things won out, and I found beauty in Erin’s photography, and maybe even a little in the subject. That’s kind of a big deal. It was also interesting watching Erika look through the photos; as I told her, the fact that she’s a photographer, and is not me, makes her perspective quite different. There are marked differences between this Erin’s photos and Erin O’Neill’s (she photographed me for her Proper Sorrows series just days before I moved home from San Francisco), and I’m curious to see how Erika’s compare. She’s asked to photograph me for her gender project, and, after not a small amount of evasiveness and noncommittal mumbling, I’ve agreed. I figure I can either relent and at least be certain I’m mentally prepared (aka, full makeup and appropriate wardrobe), or she’ll be sneaky about it and I’ll have no say whatsoever. I choose a modicum of control :)

So, here is a selection of pictures from last weekend; I did enjoy the time with Erin immensely, and it’s always fun to have a reason to get all dolled up. Have a lovely weekend, all!

Photo shoot with Erin Clark, Sept 2012

 

Therapy Thursday

It has been way too long since I’ve been able to type that subject line! I know it probably starts to sound like bragging after a while, but I am in awe of the fact that I have made significant enough changes that not seeing Richard for a month or more doesn’t leave me halfway through updating him on the chaos of my life when my time is up. Hell, earlier this year, I had that problem during weekly sessions!  It mostly comes down to what we agreed are the healthy relationships I’ve chosen to engage in and give my energy to, and the boundaries I’m learning to set in those places where anxiety lurks and The Crazy is prepared to strike at any moment. It doesn’t hurt that it’s been my favorite season and I’ve spent a lot of time camping, on the beach, reading, and in general enjoying the things that make me happiest.

I was also able to report on the busy bee day I had, investigating and applying for various programs that will help with the tough financial situation while I’m transitioning between jobs and also perhaps make it possible for me to go back to school. One of the jobs I’ve applied to is at SMCC, and one of the benefits is free tuition in the Maine Community College System for me and my immediate family. This would be WHOA HUGELY AWESOME, not to mention that I really think I would love working in that setting. Wish me luck!

Though fall is a season I typically resent primarily for its task of ushering in winter, I’m excited for some fun things coming up – for her birthday, I’m taking Erika to see Cirque du Soleil’s “Saltimbanco,” one of the longest-running touring shows, in Cirque’s first ever Maine appearance. Richard asked if I’d ever been, which I’ve not, and he assured me I will be blown away and greatly appreciate the artistry as well as the acrobatics. I am super looking forward to it, and only wish I could afford to go to more than one show! I’m also hoping to go apple-picking with The Guardian Angel of Femmes™ sometime soon, as I’ve never been and apparently that is some sort of Maine resident faux pas. I don’t personally like apples much, but Joshua does, and I love baking pretty much anything, which will put many apples to good use. I’ve also finally scheduled a long-overdue photo shoot with a darling femme with a stellar eye for portraiture, which will happen this coming Sunday. I’m nervous about it, as I’m really not thrilled with having my photo taken in general, but I’ve seen her work and have every confidence that she will do a fantastic job with what she has to work with. Saturday will be devoted to collecting clothing, makeup, and props – fun!

I think that’s about all the news that’s fit to print – I’m off to enjoy my last few days off freedom before beginning a new temp assignment on Monday. I hope you all have delightful weekends!

Music time!

I’ve been adding music to my Spotify library like crazy all summer; it feels so good to really get into music again, especially new genres and old favorites.

I’d never seen Moulin Rouge, for which I have been properly chastised, and it has been remedied. I wish I’d seen it on the big screen, but it was so, so much fun even on my tiny bedroom TV. I’ve also decided that I want to be a can-can dancer for Halloween, so someone needs to have a party. That is all.

I’ve also been reintroduced to the magic that is Rusted Root. I really enjoy some of their more ballad-y songs, but there are only a few videos on their “official” YouTube channel, and this is a fantastic song.

I hadn’t listened to Iron & Wine for a while; they came up on the Spotify Folk radio station and I was very happy to hear them again.

Joshua is a tough customer when we’re in the car when it comes to music, but he, Erika, and I were all quite content to enjoy the new Train album – this is one of my favorite songs from California 37. It’s pretty clear that the poor girl is frightened to death to be singing live on Letterman, and who can blame her; her voice is really strong and sweet on the album recording, though.

This was a top 5 song on CYY for a while; I know plenty of people say dubstep is crap, but there’s something super sexy about this sound, and his voice gives me chills.

And finally, a bittersweet discovery because it came after the artist’s passing – this will be a burlesque song if I ever get up the courage to take to the stage.

In other news, the job search is on in earnest; there are a couple of potentially amazing opportunities out there, and I’m just hopeful that things fall into place sooner rather than later. Fall is creeping into the air, particularly at night, and while I know we’re probably not going to have as mild a winter as we did last year, I’m determined to find ways to enjoy it despite my loathing of the cold and wet and mess. In the meantime, I’m enjoying the sunny days and the cool evenings, the shift to down comforters and soft jersey knit sheets, and the fun wardrobe items that are slowly making their way back into rotation. I hope you are all enjoying life in your corners of the world!

Family.

Family is such a loaded word, a loaded concept. It can make us feel warm and safe, or anxious and alert – usually each by turns. I’ve had a lot of reasons to think about family and what it means to me, what I expect from family and what I want to give to mine. I think I’m coming to a better place around it altogether, but there are still things that cause a twinge or a cringe or a total loss of center. I’m trying to take my power back from “family” – not the people, but the institution. In the last few days, I’ve taken a couple of big steps toward that, and you know what? The world did not end. I know I’ve said that here a couple of times before, but it’s worth noting that all of the shit I fear is far less likely to cause me harm in some way than I anticipate. Anyway, that’s my random thought for the evening, because I feel like I owe y’all something since I’ve been a super slacker while I’ve been soaking up these last few weeks of summer. Here are a few photos from the epic camping trips I’ve gone on the last couple of weekends, and you can look forward to another music post in the near future.

And here’s a play-by-play-ish series, though I have to say, I’ve not tried sharing facebook photos here and don’e know if it’ll even work because of my privacy settings. If it does, yay for you, if not, and if you REALLY wanna see ’em, shoot me an email :)

Salisbury, 2012