Secret of Life According to KT


April 2014

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Tallulah Glitter Limelight Dreams Begins! - This is the REAL first Blog! :-)

Who am I? Why the heck would you want to read what I have to say? What can I possibly add to the blogosphere? Something tells me I can add a lot. Lots of folks have told me they love my Facebook statuses. For the past couple of years I have considered writing a blog. People in various capacities have encouraged me to write one, but a lot held me back. Here are somet hings about me. I am a 41 year old mom to three super children - ages 7, 9, and 16. I have lived outside of Orlando for the past three years, but also spent eight years in the suburbs of Philadelphia and was born and raised outside of Albany, NY. I own a performing arts school for children. I am a recovering alcoholic with 11 years sobriety. I am a teacher, mentor, special events planner, fundraiser, theater director, marketing expert, and lover of all things pop culture/entertainment - television, film, theater, music, etc. Since I train young people for careers in the entertainment business, my finger is on the pusle of what is happening. I am a small business owner, full time mom of three, with 2 boys with ADHD, and I am very busy. My sense of humor is sometimes over the top, liberal and I rarely pull any punches. I am a steadfastly loyal friend who always wants to fix everything.  I believe in fate, destiny, and dreams coming true. I am a tireless advocate of self esteem in women. Who knows where this blog will take me, but I think it can make a difference to its readers. Join the ride!

Theater Epiphany - Quotes Needed

I just finished an amazing 10 performance run of THE BOXCAR CHILDREN. Although I have directed plays for years, it was different in a lot of way. I double cast pretty much the whole show. It has its good points and its bad points, but overall, I liked doing that. We went to the Orlando International Fringe Festival - which was a trip. I had the cast party at my house, which I have started doing over the years. I think back to the days of Bugsy Malone when the cast party was at a restaurant. I think the first pool cast party was Fairy Tale Spectacular...or maybe West Side Story - lord knows we had a ton of parties during West Side Story! I can't remember. I fondly remember the party for the Carousel we did at FMCC...the one with the clam bake and the carousel horses on the front fence of my house in Scotia. We set up the big screen in the backyard and watched the 2004 show - then watched the show from Colonial Little Theatre in 1995. SUCH fun watching Aaron Flynn (director) and Jennifer McKeough (choreographer & Carrie P.) as father and daughter back in the day - now they're married! ANYWHO...

The kids and parents at the cast party last night were enamored. They were amazed by the fact that I opened my home, pool, heart to them and their families. They loved the awards ceremony. They loved the experience. Which is awesome. They are clamoring for MORE of me. MORE meaty acting roles for their kids. MORE of constant communication and professionalism. MORE attention to detail. MORE of an unwavering commitment that the product that goes up on the stage is absolutely top notch. MORE of the extraordinarily positive experience their children had. They are hungry for high quality. They are tired of half-assed efforts in children's theatre. Tired of directors that don't disicpline and let their kids be a part of a free-for-all. It IS about the experience, isn't it? And believe me - I HAVE NEVER ALLOWED a free for all - it is not all fun and games when I do things. Kids come into one of my shows at one level, then leave the show at a higher level. I make them better actors. They learn something. They become more disciplined, they are proud of what WE accomplish as a team and leave BETTER than they were when they walked in the door. And for the most part, over the last 20 years of me doing this type of work with children, they loved the experience. There are a handful of children over the years that did not click with my personality and my style of doing things. I can count on one hand who they are - I remember each and every one. But for the most part, there are hundreds of children in the world today - easily over 1000 - and many that are adults - that really had an awesome experience working in shows I directed or produced.

Part of my curse in being an over-achiever (Thanks, Mom!) is that I get an idea and HAVE to go balls to the wall with it. I have to push it to grandiose proportions, think through every detail, and then I hit a wall. Grandiose takes major dollars. In the Limelight is an AWESOME business concept. Just super expensive for what I envision it being. As I sit in wallow in self pity and excuses about how I don't have grandiose dollars, time slips away. I short sell myself and work for sub-par managers that can't hold a candle to what I deliver. I end up making the people I work for look less than, and then I pay dearly for it. Their incompetence or egos make them nervous. I overwhelm people. That's a fact. But now? That's it. Done. Not going to do it anymore. I am opening my own production company. I am going to focus strictly on children's theatre- straight plays to start. No musicals with expensive music directors. Just great plays with all kids casts, and meaty dramatic roles that kids need. The reality is, in order to get a lead in musical theatre you have to sing the best, dance the best. What about the kids who are not the greatest singers and dancers, but terrific actors? Are they stuck with supporting roles and chorus roles for the extent of their young careers because no one has the balls or inclination to do straight plays? What about the boys that would not be caught dead singing and dancing on stage, but are awesome dramatic actors? No way, man. Not going to let it happen. That's my niche. That's what I am going to do. I think I may start with LITTLE WOMEN. All I REALLY need is a DBA, space to rehearse, a venue to perform it at the end, and insurance. Done. Over. Epiphany.

Now this is where you come in. I'm tagging you because you have worked with me in your lives - either as an actor, a parent, an employee. You can vouche for the positive "experience" I speak of. As I kick off this production company I want real, live, true, testimonials that will help entice people to bring their children to me. If you walked away from one or more of my productions or classes being a better actor, having an awesome time, learning a ton, overcame a fear of being in front of people, or if I inspired you to pursue a career in performing arts, I want to hear from you. Please know this is not an ego stroke, but a true overview of my body of work and I want quotes that I can use on my website. I want to put your name and what you do for a living. And if you are homeless or a ditch digger, let's come up with a great career to put next to your name! And to you Aaron Flynn, know that I have never uttered the words, "That was shit. You can do a hell of a lot better than that. Stop wasting my time and my rehearsal coming out on that stage and giving me a shit scene" since 1995. I am much more mellow and professional NOW than I was back in the early 90's! BUT saying that, when kids do deliver shit, I still make them go back and do it again until they give me a scene worthy of an audience!!

Love you all and REALLY hope you come through and give me a quote. I want to put A LOT on my website!! xxxooo

There's got to be a first blog (The 2009 attempt)

I have contemplated blogging for a long time. I even tried it out in MSN and My Space (which are all of my older entries on here), but quite frankly became pretty bored with My Space. Facebook gives you a much more interactive social networking experience. My Space gives you more creativity, but at the end of the day, Facebook is much more fun.  Blogging about one thing in particular is not really my thing. I have a lot going on - lots I am passionate about and fascinating, fun things that I want to pursue and take on in life. I have a story to tell and need to get back into writing on a more regular basis. I'm trying this blogging thing to see where it takes me. I don't want boundaries at this point. Who am I kidding? I HATE boundaries, always have. I like to make the rules. I like spirited dialogue, I have lots of opinions on lots of things, and quite frankly, there are a lot of hacks and crazy people out there who are not as smart, driven, interesting and kooky as me, so maybe, just maybe I'll make for an interesting read, or entertaining read. Who the heck knows. Join me on this little journey and let's see where it takes us.

25 Likes and Dislikes

1. When my kids laugh
2. Positive, happy people with a sarcastic, live and let live edginess
3. How babies smell when they are clean
4. Taking pictures
5. Going to the movies by myself
6. Shopping, both by myself and with my daughter
7. Decorating a room
8. Directing committed kids in theatre with helpful, cooperative parents
9. Asking a rich person for a lot of money to support an organization I care about and they say "YES!"
10. When people send me cards in the mail with personal notes in them
11.Laying in the sun at the beach reading an awesome book
12. Watching Broadway shows when I know all the music
13. The song, The Climb
14. Facebook
15. Twilight book series and films
16. Lost
17. Concerts
18. My husband's cooking
19. My house interior colors and my pool
20.My neighbors
21. pink and green
22. John Mayer
23. Saying swear words with my gal pals
24. NYC
25. The way I look in red

Things I Dislike
1. When people say they're going to do something and they don't
2. Phony balonies
3. When people try to make me do things I don't want to do
4. Cheap men
5. Ignorance
6. Pettiness
7. Black Licorice
8. Working Out/ Exercise
9. Ann Coulter, Sarah Palin and George W. Bush
10. Doing laundry
11. Cleaning
12. Being ignored
13. When my kids fight
14. Bad drivers who go slow when I need them to go fast
15. Paying outrageously high utility bills
16. Domestic Violence
17. Coverage of the Casey Anthony case - enough already!
18. The Catholic church's stance on too many things to mention
19. My homeowner's association board of directors
20. Credit card companies
21. When people don't own their responsibilities or mistakes
22. When people I need to take initiative and just DO IT - don't
23. Drunk people
24. When people don't communicate effectively
25. Backstabbing, soul-less, leeches

The Pursuit of Something Better

The older I get the more I realize that I am always on a quest. A pursuit of something better.  Something better for my soul, my children, my husband, my universe.  Our move to Florida was always much more than the weather. My husband had a terrific job opportunity that he could not have gotten in the Northeast. We live in a home we could not have afforded in the Northeast. Theme parks, beaches, water parks and a plethora of other arts and cultural opportunities do not exist on this scale in the Northeast, and cannot be accessed year-round in the Northeast. I LOVE having my children run outside in their bare feet and play every day of the year, after school and on weekends in sunshine.  My senses have become so much more finite since I have moved to the south.  I spent 38 years living in the Northeast. I experienced winter in all its frozen forms month after month. I had to prepare myself every day from November to March for the dreaded effects of the winter – the treacherous roads, the walking paths, the air as it hits you when you go outside, the sickness, the dry skin. I do not enjoy winter and I never have. It is a preference developed after 38 years of living with it.  I have spent the last three years not having that. I won’t apologize for making this choice. It was the best decision for the five of us at the time. The pursuit of something better.  But not necessarily forever.

Not being able to access my family as easily as it was in the Northeast is a challenge and it is furstrating. Probably more frustrating than I had originally planned. Since I am not building my business, we don’t have the resources to be able to fly to NY or buy my mother plane tickets as often as I would prefer. It SUCKS that we can’t be together for birthday parties and other celebrations. I am cognizant of the fact that this distance has changed our family’s story, our traditions, and we miss out on things. Are they justifiable sacrifices in the pursuit of something “better?” Does it make us selfish for wanting something “better?” Then again, when you weigh it all up. Is it better?

I am not a 9-5 office-type girl. I have done it before, but that has not meant it has made me happy. I need a certain type of job to be happy and fulfilled and I won’t apologize for that.  I have a different mold. I am the kind of person that cannot take a job because it is a job - A place to make money so I can take the money and enjoy life. I need both. My job has to be something that I enjoy doing and I am passionate about.  

I’m not saying that when they made me, they broke the mold, but my mold is pretty unique – definitely not the status quo. I don’t fall into a mold of the standard life: college-married-job-kids-travel-retirement-grandchildren-death-done.  I have to make a difference. I have to challenge myself. I have to enjoy my life. I have to constantly be in pursuit of something better. As I pursue something better, it is not necessarily a bigger house or a better car than we have now – that kind of “better” doesn’t REALLY matter to me.  I don’t care about status symbols. My mini-van is just fine! I need to make a bigger mark, establish that great achievement, and make the dollars so I don’t have to stress and can live life fully.

I have always had this spark. But a spark is only as powerful as the clarity, the focus, the fuel to turn the spark into real fire. My teens were riddled with depression, alcoholism and a bunch of bad choices. In my 20’s my path was almost always headed in the right direction, but again, overshadowed with the fog of alcohol, depression and more bad choices. The fog lifted when I stopped drinking in 1999. It was a re-building process, for sure, but I was able to put my family back together, strengthen my path and start finding that clarity. I mourn for my lost years, I really do. But I am in Pursuit of Something Better.  

What I Know and What I Don't Know... Help!!

So I have spent the better part of one year not working full time, working on various projects. Part of me feels like I have really needed this past year for some self discovery, part of me feels like a lazy bum who should have accomplished much more in the last 12 months. In all honesty, I can't recall a time where I have NOT worked steadily on either a full time job or multiple part time jobs. On the plus side, I have decorated my house, directed plays, taught some classes, started a business plan for a new business concept, did some travelling, entertained lots of visitors, and spent lots of time with my kids. I know those things are luxuries, that people often don't have enough time to do because they are so busy. It has also given me lots of time to figure it all out. I turn 40 this year, and there is still A LOT left to get accomplished. I need to get going on what I want to do with the rest of my life, but I need to reach out to a few of my friends to run something by you all and pick your brilliant brains.

What I know...(After almost one year of not being a full time employee)

I know I want to help as many kids as possible - particularly girls - to have high self esteem and grow into amazing, self-assured, smart, strong women. I have a fascinating personal story to tell that is riddled with mistakes, but filled with recovery, redemption & healing. I want to find a way to communicate my story to girls that will help them on their path to being empowered and feeling complete - without the influence of substances or a dependence on having a man in their life. I don't know what that needs to look like. Ultimately, I love TV. I think there is a very potent power that television posseses and I know that this form of media directly influences girls. Does it start with a book that is made into a serialized television program, or a film, or a play? The goal being that I want it to be seen by as many girls as possible. That's not too sweeping, is it?!

Here's what I bring to the table - in addition to my story: Over the course of my career, I have taken on a variety of roles in young people's lives. I have worked in theatre for over 20 years, directing kids and helping to build their self esteem through the performing arts. I have the education - secondary education/minor in drama. I have worked with kids in theatre and the YMCA for many years. When I was in the YMCA - in addition to directing camps, teen groups, day cares, etc. I created a girls mentoring group where I paired young teenage females with professional women. I still follow these girls, even though they are adults, college students, moms, etc. A girl I directed in plays in Johnstown was in need while living in Miami and I got the gist of her desperation through Facebook. I went to her and took her shopping because she was on the edge of homelessness and needed a leg up. My business concept is a performing arts school that is also a birthday party business that focuses on performing arts parties. Kids can dress up as characters and play roles in little improvisational presentations as a part of their party - acentuating imaginative play and believing in the concept that you can be whatever you dream to be. Currently Steve and I are investigating doing some foster parenting to assist a young girl in need.

"Helping Young Girls" keeps coming up in my life. It's my calling. I want to do it on a larger scale. I just need to figure out how.

If you are tagged in this note it is because I value your opinion and know that you have connections in some way to some area that I need help with - writing, education, healthcare, entertainment, new business development. Whatever it ends up being, I recognize the value in having it endorsed by a national organization like Girl Scouts, Girls, Inc., Dove, Oprah, etc.

I apologize if it sounds as though I am rambling. It is my undiagnosed ADD at work! Any feedback, suggestions, guidance would be very much appreciated!!

My Cat Annie

Today was a day that I knew would come someday, but it was always the day you dread to think about. The day that you just could not predict when it would be. I have always had animals in my life - and almost always cats. But the cats I had when I lived in my parent's house were never "mine" - they were my mom's. My first cat that was all mine was Annie. She was a stray that had been abused, somewere in the Ft. Plain area. Some rat-bastard had slammed her tail in a screen door and cut it in half. It stuck up like a question mark. She was brought to a shelter in Canajoharie. Stephen and I had just gotten our first apartment in Broadalbin and I wanted to get a pet. My mom's friend Marilyn volunteered at the shelter and told my mom about this little black cat's story. She was a year old and she needed a good home. The shelter named her Little Orphan Annie. We got her. That was November of 1991. In August of 1992 we got 2 kittens - also black - Oliver and Sebastian. Annie naturally became a mother to them. She cared for them and cleaned them and took them in as if they were her own. In September of 1993, when I was pregnant for Sam, we got 2 more kittens - Lila and Cecelia Bloom. Cecelia Bloom was a bit of a pip (just like the character in the film BEACHES she was named after!) and could not get along with the rest of the cats. We found a home for her, but Lila became another of Annie's babies. The four of them lived together through the births of 3 children, 10 houses, two states, and 10 years, until Sebastian was the first one to die of kidney failure at Christmas in 2003. Lila followed in 2005 with cancer taking her life. We got two twin sisters in August of 2005, Lola (just switched the "i" to "o") and Ella (after "Ella Enchanted"). Annie, once again, became like a mother to the new kittens. Oliver and Annie became like the old married couple of the cat family. Oliver - always adventurous - always wanting to get outside - and often did - would disappear for hours or a day or two. Always returning - hidden under a porch or in a garage. He'd get too cold or hungry and always came home. Annie never strayed away. It was as if she knew she did not want to escape. She had found her home. When we moved to FL, Stephen took to horrible task of taking the four cats in the cab of a moving truck for 23 hours. Oliver sat on his head for the entire trip while Annie meowed - completely pissed off. Stephen hated every minute of it, but when he arrived in FL, he was amazed at how happy the cats were. They loved the lanai, and the light and the space of the new house. They loved being able to be outside year-round but being safely enclosed in a giant screen building. Annie loved it the most, as she had been inside for the better part of her life. Annie never really liked to be held or picked up. She came to you if she wanted to be held. For many years she slept with Sam, and then when we moved to FL, she slept with us, next to my head. She was a meticulously clean animal who was vocal when she did not like something. As she started to really age, she started to lose wiehgt, and her thyroid was acting up. Over the past year she had to take medicaine for that and for blood pressure. They told me in the fall that she had a small spot on her lung that they would watch. That spot ended up being lung cancer that spread like wildfire over the last 6 months. She eventually stopped sleeping next to my head because she could not climb on the bed anymore. She liked sleeping in the basket of towels in my bathroom, and I moved her litter box in there so she did not have to travel across the house - but she did anyway. She was a creature of habit. Back in October, Oliver got out again, but this time he did not come back. I spent weeks searching for him day in and day out. Annie cried at the door screaming for him, but he did not return. It was heartbreaking. In all honesty, she started to take a turn for the worst after he left. He still has not returned, even though I have not given up hope. Tonight I posted big plastic signs at a major intersections, hoping some kind soul in a neighborhood close to here may have found him and has been caring for him. Over the last week Annie slipped very far. She was rapidly losing weight, dehydrated, had an infection - it was a mess. I ran every test imaginable and the chest x-ray confirmed the cancer was bad and they optimistically gave her 1-2 months. I was ready for that. Not 1 week. I tried my best to keep her comfortable at the end. I knew today was the day when she was unable to walk or hold up her head this morning. She laid in my arms, wrapped in a blanket for most of the day while I told her little stories about her life. She listened. She knew. I could not bare driving her to the vet, with her in a cage, with me taking my life into my hands in a state of blubbering idiot. Stephen came home from work early, I said good bye in the house and he drove her to the Vet. He stayed with her and made sure she could see him until the very end. I sobbed and washed the floor and tried to clean up all of the remnants of her and her sickness. And like a little time table, had to pull my shit togehter and be at work by 5. I had callbacks for the play I was directing and 20 kids were waiting for me. No time to crawl into bed and cry - which is what I wanted to do. And also, if I did that , my kids would do the same. I had to wait until everyone went to bed to mourn privately. As I walked around the house tonight I saw the ghost of my little cat at every turn. My nightly routine of meds and feeding was over and I felt slightly useless. I was always aware of where she was and what she looked like everyday. And I have been home for the better part of the last year, so I have gotten to spend everyday with her. That was lucky. The pain is a very dull ache. I still have faith Oliver will come back, but Annie is so final. She died today. I don't have her anymore, and that leaves a terrific void in my life. I will miss her so very much. There will never be another one like my sweet, sweet, Annie.

50 Random Things About Me (Remember that thing from Facebook?)

1. 2009 is really a crazy year for me...I turn 40 on March 26...on October 11 is my 10 year anniversary of being sober...and in 1999, Stephen and I reunited after being separated for 2 years. Lots of things to celebrate.

2. I love going to see musical theatre productions - it does not matter if it is an all kids cast or Broadway. Curtain call is my favorite part because the cast gets the proper recognition for all of its hard work and the audience gets a chance to show their appreciation. I ALWAYS get choked up at a curtain call, especially standing ovations when they REALLY deserve it. I don't stand unless they deserve it.

3. New York City is my favorite city on the planet. I love to walk the streets, see the sites, and I always have to see a Broadway show and if the timing is right, visit the Today show and the NBC tour. If I can't see a show, I don't normally go. Not being able to go to NYC on a whim is the one thing I really miss (besides people of course) about NYS.

4. I think my kids are incredibly talented, magical and special. They are all going to be amazing human beings and make an incredible mark on this world...no status quo for them..they are extraordinary and I will do everything in my power to make sure they get there.

5. When I was young, I let alcohol take more control of me that I should and feel like I lost 10 years because of it. I wish I could get that 10 years back.

6. I love having money and shopping.

7. I love working with kids - especially in the theatre. It is very important for me to get the absolute best out of them, and that they like me and respect me. I cherish being friends with them when they become adults, and feel so proud when they continue to perform or decide to teach kids/direct kids in theatre. It's a full circle thing for me and extremely rewarding.

8. I also love working with kids that are at risk or having a tough time. Unfortunately, I am extremely emotional, so I could never be a social worker or a counselor. I would want to adopt them all and save them all.

9. I adore cats and am not a fan of dogs - especially big ones or stinky ones that lick your face - it is not my bag.

10. I am going to live a very long life and make a huge mark on this world. I'll be famous in some shape or form. It may sound silly, but it is absolutely 100% the truth. I will not be satisfied until I have made the biggest mark I can.

11. I love going to the movies - going by myself - seeing many of them back to back. Oscar season is my favorite time of year.

12. In 2008, 3 people who I loved dearly screwed me over so royally that I am still not over it. I have not worked full time since a very bad day in March and am really hoping I can find the peace to get over it. I am really a good person, with a big heart and when people mess with my livelihood, my future and ultimately my family - it blindsided me so completely - it is REALLY hard to get over!

13. I love to read fiction and non-fiction, I have a great collection of books that I keep in big, beautiful white bookcases in my office (my office is awesome - it is all pink and green and flowery with framed posters of all my favorite movies and Broadway shows all over the walls and a scrapbooking station) and my magazines are Entertainment Weekly, O, and Parents.

14. I am so thankful that I moved to Florida and really underestimated how wonderful this weather was for the psyche.

15. I desperately miss my brother and my mother and I cry it hurts so much.

16. My sister and Jessica are my best girlfriends in the world, and I am very fortunate I get to see them as often as I do, even though they live in NC and PA. They know all my secrets and still love me, which is a terrific thing!

17. I love TV and have shows I watch faithfully and will talk about them to anyone if they care (Especially Lost). I love the DVR and the freedom it gives you to not have to plan your life around your show. I have watched ER since 1994 and can't believe it is ending this year! I love the entertainment industry and love working in it.

18. Someday I want to produce television shows for a TV network for young women on empowerment. Some people want world peace? I want girls in general to get their shit together and be empowered!... to not hang all their dreams on a man, to not get addicted to substances, to not get pregnant before they are ready, to be careful with who they give themselves to, to be healthy in mind, body and spirit, to study hard in school and never, ever be the victim.

19. I do not make friends easily, but once you're my friend and we share a past, I am in for the long haul. I don't discard people. I don't discard kids I work with either. I genuinely care about all of them and do all I can to keep up with them and help them.

20. I wish I could go back and do high school and college over again with the knowledge I have now - I would have done things so differently.

21. I love sending people gifts - making scrapbooks for people is the best, because it makes them so happy. I am also famous for sending books, CDs, DVDs to people from Amazon.

22. I like exposing my friends and family to culture they would never have known about if I did not introduce them to it.

23. I love Oprah Winfrey. I think she is terrific and I admire her very much. She was so right when she said you have to LOVE your body. I hate my body right now, but I am finally taking the steps I need to to get it to a good place - I have lost 6 lbs. and will keep going...I have 54 more lbs. to go.

24. I wish I were a good singer. Bill Crankshaw always told me I was, but I don't believe him. I would love to be on American Idol. I know I am so silly, but I love that show and think it would be amazing!

25. Wicked is my favorite Broadway show in the entire world and I sincerely weep a bit here and there - especially when Wizard & I starts, all through Defying Gravity (my theme song - remember? from Ally McBeal?), and then I really let it go during For Good. I am a mess by the end and I love every minute of it...

26. I love to travel, but only the being in the location. I HATE entire process of GETTING there. My dream is to get to Italy, Paris, Australia and Greece.

27. Someday I am going to open my own theatre school & theatrical birthday party business, with multiple locations along the east coast.

28. Someday I am going to write a book that will be wildly successful, Oprah will endorse it and I will sit on her couch and discuss it with her.

29. No matter how many times I have been, I love Disney World & still get butterflies when I see the Magic Kingdom castle in front of me.

30. Going to rock concerts is one of my favorite things in the world to do. I always go and see John Mayer - he is my favorite accessible live artist. Top shows ever? Madonna, U2, Paul McCartney, Def Leppard/Journey. Oh, and I hate the lawn...That is for the teens and twenty-something crowd - not my bag.

31. I have been accused of wanting "Camelot" in my places of employment. I guess I am searching for a GREAT boss who I can respect, learn from, and be inspired by, and competent, loyal, intelligent, and good humored employees on my team. Maybe that's why 2. is so important. If you can't find what you are looking for - make your own!

32. I hate cleaning. Nothing is better than walking into your house after the cleaning lady has made it into shining showplace and you didn't have to do it! I need to get her back...

33. My favorite colors are magenta, mauve, yellow, aqua and sage green. I love Victorian and Country decor. If you walk through my house, you'll see rooms painted in these colors (magenta and aqua are the kids' rooms!) and decor in both styles! I particularly love Waverly prints.

34. I currently have three cats - Annie, who I have had since before Stephen and I were married in 1991; Lola and Ella, twin sisters. I have had as few as 1 and as many as 5.

35. I have moved a lot in my life. In NY I have lived in Broadalbin (2 places), Gloversville, Johnstown (twice), Scotia (twice), Schenectady, Albany, in PA I lived in West Chester (3 different places), and Malvern (2 places) and then in FL, Gotha.

36. I have been known to swear like nobody's business - it may be trashy, but it is a part of my theatrical personality - and I am good when I have to be!

37. Stephen and I met while working at an all-girl resident camp on Lake Sebago in Maine. He worked on the waterfront and I worked in the theatre. He is from Northern Ireland and we had to get a fiancee's visa and get married to secure his future in the USA.

38. I have become very political as I have grown older and am a staunch Democrat. I am a fierce advocate for civil rights for gays and women's rights across the board. Bigotry enrages me. I loathe Hannity, Limbaugh & Coulter. I love Barack Obama AND Hillary Clinton (and Bill for that matter).

39. I never wanted a mini-van, but now I have one, I would not trade it for the world.

40. I do not fall into the mold of a stay at home mom, a soccer mom, a PTA mom or a workout at the gym mom. I am my own mom species and rarely find anyone who is in my species.

41. I love living in Florida but I am often very lonely and wish I had more friends here. Oh, and I am not good at making friends - at all.

42. I love Reese's peanut butter cups, Oreos and cheesecake. None of which can be allowed in my house. I am cursed with an addictive personality and if they are here - I will house it ALL down.

43. I thank my mom for exposing me to theater at a young age. It helped make me who I am and is a HUGE part of my life. I also thank her for making me take dance for 10+ years, be in the girl scouts, be a candy striper, 4 years of cheerleading - I have a tendency to be hard on her for her mistakes, but overall, she did a lot right, and I made her life a LIVING HELL from 1984-1991.

44. I will someday have an apartment in NYC overlooking Central Park.

45. Beautiful music from musicals inspire me - my favorite vocalists are Mandy Patinkin, Bernadette Peters, Audra McDonald, & Barbra Streisand. I LOVE Sondheim - Into the Woods, Company, Passion, West Side Story, Sweeney Todd, Sunday in the Park with George, Assassins - all of it.

46. I like to shop at Old Navy, Kohls, Ross & Marshalls because you get great buys. I am a huge sucker for Home Goods and RARELY buy anything retail. It is a complete an total waste of money.

47. It is important to me that my kids have a magical childhood. I have spent a lot of time making their playroom the best I can possibly make it, with art supplies, games, costumes, a little stage. Since we live in Florida, they also can play outside and ride bikes in the sunshine all day long, year round, with the sweetest children in our neighborhood. I love giving them all a snack - my mom was not a fan of feeding the neighborhood when I was little - I could care less. I also love to expose them to lots of things - museums, films, art. I want them to be cultured, understand the importance and beuaty of the arts and grasp the importance of tolerance and equality. That sounds cheesy, but it is TRUE.

48. I am a huge fan of the beach and am so fortunate we get to go often. I also have affection for the water parks. Any place I can sit in a chaise lounge in the sun and read a book is cool with me!

49. I believe I am one of the very lucky women in the world who has a husband that loves, respects, dotes on and tolerates me. We have found the secret to a great marriage and I would not change a thing.

50. I love Facebook. It re-connected me with people that I thought I might never see again. It is non-invasive and a lot of fun. The other night myself and a couple of friends from high school were chatting, sharing memories and laughing our asses off. How often can that happen? Maybe at a reunion? If you are all there? Never on a Tuesday night when you are in three different states...

Disastrous Interview That Wasn't

Current mood:  bitchy
Category: Jobs, Work, Careers

Well the fun, fun, fun has officially ended. My luxury of not having to be gainfully employed has disappeared and I am now, reluctantly job hunting.  It has been a great 6 months of freelancing here and there, spending tons of time with my kids and putting the plans together for In the Limelight. Don't get me wrong, I love working for Orlando Youth Theatre. It is great - but not enough money to survive. No matter what happens, I will still work to keep that position. It is flexible as all get out and is only 15 hours a week. Technically I can do the work in the evenings, remotely from home and on the weekend I could even go in, as Saturday is the busiest day for them.

Now I am in a quandary.  In the Limelight has had to be what I would call "middle burnered" not back burnered or front burnered.  I am sort of kind of at the point in the business plan process where I have to delve into the money part and it becomes painfully obvious that I don't HAVE any money at the moment.  I will get some someday, but at the moment, the well is dry.  NOW what the hell am I going to do? I have this stupendous resume with tons of experience and a great skill set.  The jobs out there are a big flipping bore.  And the fun ones? They probably pay you in quarters, and I think the one I went for today sounded like fun, but could probably be done by any random ding dong.  I unfortunately was the ding dong extraordinaire today.  Read on.

I had an interview at 11 am at Universal Studios today. Good god - what a disaster that was.  So here is the story. I spend the morning furiously analyzing careerbuilder, getting resumes up, and trying to complete the application process for UCF. I could easily work in their development department AND get free tuition. I have looked into this route before, as I would really love to go back to school, but the application process was taking HOURS to complete.  So I look at the clock and I am running late. I rush like a maniac to get showered and dressed and perfected and leave the house at 10:50. Stupid move, as the interview at Universal is at 11 and quite frankly, I know better.  I take the worng turn, get in the worng entrance, finally find my way and go to the main HR building by 11:07. I tell the person at the desk who I am and where I am going and she directs me down the sidewalk to gate 2.  I get there and there is a woman standing there outside the security hut - about 45 or so, skinny, nervous. No clue what her bag is. I approach the security guard and introduce myself and tell him I have an appointment with "Mike" (the appointment was made over the phone and a last name was never given) for the Television Audience Recruitment position at 11 and I am sorry I am late (at this point it is 11:10). Security man has no clue what the hell I am talking about and tells me the skinny, nervous chick is in the same boat.  He is not as helpful as I would like.  He tells me he will make a call and find out the scoop. The chick approaches me, sees my file folder with my resume and references and says "You brought a resume?" I said "Yes." (Duh - WTF do you think is in the folder, Miss Nosy Nosemary?) She said "Mine is in the car."  Then security man says "Do you have a cell phone?" I say "yes." He says, "call Mike at this number - it is his cell phone."  Miss Nosemary says "I have a cell phone too, but I left it in the car." Apparently she has left quite a few things in the car.  She says "My name is Miranda, what is yours?" I tell her and  I call the number Mr. Security man writes on a NAPKIN (hello?) and get a voicemail for a guy named Mike. I leave a message "Hello Mike, this is Katie Corrie calling and I have an appointment scheduled with you at 11:00 am for the Television Audience Recruiter Job. I am here with another candidate for the position, Miranda, and we are at security gate 2 outside of the wardrobe building. We hope to see you soon as the security guard is unable to contact you directly. Please call back on my cell."  Then Miranda the skinny chick says, "Why don't you try calling Mike at the number I called to make the appointment? She shows me her car keys, and on the remote door opener, she has taped the job ad to it. Wacky - but at least she has the number - she obviously travels light. I call that number (which apparently Mr. Security man does not have) and a woman answers the phone. I explain the situation to her. She says, "What are your names? You are not on the list. Mike waited for you until 11:10 and then brought everyone up here." Silence. WTF? If we are not on the list, how could he have waited for people not on the list? And what's up with the silence? She then said she would come down to get us. Great. I then tell her where we are. I am glad I did, because she said "What are you doing outside of the Wardrobe building at gate 2?" I explain that the woman at the Main HR building told us to come here and that is why we are here.  Now it gets good... 5 minutes later this big, shabby looking dude in desperate need for a haircut and a clean shirt appears with a "Mike" name tag on, but a different last name from the dude I left the voicemail for - oops - Mr. Security man effed that one up and now I look like a tool to the other Mike.  He says "What are your names?" (v. rude) I tell mine, skinny tells hers. He looks at a scraggly looking piece of paper in his hand and tells us we are not on the list. We both explain how we each talked to him directly on Tuesday evening/Wednesday morning and he told us to come at 11 am on Thursday. He says "You'll have to forgive me, I have interviewed 40 people in the last two days for this job and it gets a bit overwhelming, ya know?"  Then he looks skinny Miranda in the eye and says "Do you care to tell me why you are late?" JUST like a 7th grade gym teacher. She buckles like a child and explains she could not find a parking space and was 3 minutes late and she is so sorry. THEN he looks at me and says "And what's your excuse?" It took every fiber of my being NOT to say, "You know what dude? You F!@ked up by telling us the wrong place to come, did not write our names down, and do you know who you are talking to? I am NOT one these degenerate ding-dongs that sell churros to tourists in 150 degree heat all day long, I am the queen of children's theatre, a goddess of marketing, the wonderkid of fundraising and a damn good teacher. I don't have to take your shit!  BUT - I bit my tongue and said, "I'm sorry, Mike. I went into the wrong driveway and got confused. I am very sorry."  He then says "If either of you do end up getting hired you need to be on time or early EVERY day." We both nod and agree with Mike we will both be good little girls and be there on time. Then he says he needs our drivers license so we can get a nametag. I rifle through my purse and my heart sinks. In my rush to get out of the house, I visualize my wallet sitting next to my desktop at home where I needed my license to fill out the UCF application, and I indeed, have no ID - and apparently, no interview.  Skinny, who has been COMPLETELY unprepared to this point has hers in her POCKET. I say in my most witty, upbeat manner "I am batting zero today, Mike! I changed purses and do not have my wallet." He says, "Sorry, no photo ID you can't come in. If you still want to be considered, I will be scheduling another round of interviews for next week." Skinny Miranda, feeling sorry for me at that point says "What about her car registration? Will that work." I smile and say thank you, but that's fine, "Take care!" and walk away like the loser I am. For a brief moment I felt like a 19 year old college kid being booted out the door of the bar for trying to pass off a library card for an ID (Which incidentally, the Copper Penny Pub on State Street in Albany used to accept library cards!).  I get in my van, call my husband and say "I really blew that one baby."  Oh well!  It was not meant to be!!

What's in a name? Let's name this business!

Current mood:  busy
Category: Jobs, Work, Careers

So....have been trying to come up with a name. Last time it was Corrie Arts & Theatre School, which was great. Said exactly what it was and became C.A.T.S.  Now that the parties are going to be such an important part and it won't exclusively be a school, it needs something shorter and GREAT. Robin Wiley, my pal who does corporate development for Proctor's gave me the answer I needed - In the Limelight.  She likes Limelight on its own and I completely agree, BUT there are a string of nightclubs around the world with scantily clad women running around them in called simply Limelight.  I started playing with what the word would say in logo - I like perform (a little star graphic) party (A little star graphic) play and them below it In the Limelight.  That is something to get inspired and excited about.  It says a lot about the draw of the place, and of course parents will indeed call it "Limelight" for short.  A little lightbulb went off and that is always a good thing. Barring any unforeseen complications, I think it may be a keeper.

Now I need to get a domain.  Inthelimelight.com, .net etc. are all taken and could cost as much as $15K. Scratch that. Inthelimelightonline.com, partyinthelimelight.com, and performinthelimelight.com are all available.  I of course own thecorrieschool.com, but that probably won't work.  Decisions, decisions... 

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