Progress Report

Guys, do you realize we are almost half-way through the year?  July 2nd is the 182nd day of 2014.  I thought it would be a good time to check in and see where I am.

You may recall an ealier post this year about my goals for 2014.  My motto this year is “Living Intentionally”.  I’m awfully afraid I’ve not lived up to what I set before myself, so let’s take a pulse, shall we?

Here’s a refresher and update on my goals.

Live Intentionally – 2014 Goals:

1. Donate 150 of my personal hours through volunteerism.

2. Go on a mission trip. (I’m using the term “mission” here to mean volunteerism.)

3. Donate resources to:

  • a children’s hospital
  • a wounded veteran’s organization
  • a missions organization
  • Heifer.org

4. Take my child to the beach.

5. Continue to live a healthy lifestyle

So where am I?

1.  I think I’ve logged around 5 hours.  I’m failing miserably at this one.  I joined a volunteer meetup group, which is great, but I’ve not volunteered for anything.  I only realized this weekend that a lot of the time I will not sign up because it’s not convenient for me.  I’m going to work to change that attitude and get busy giving away my time.

2.  Yeah, uhm.  I inquired about a trip to Honduras, but I was too late to get a spot as the payment deadline had passed some weeks before.  In the end, that turned out to be a good thing for me because several weeks after that inquiry I lost my job and would not have been able to afford to pay for the remainder of the trip.  I’m still looking for a trip however; the job situation has resolved itself, thankfully, and I’m still intending on going somewhere.  My biggest challenge here will be financial.

3.  Accomplished!

4.  Scheduled and being looked forward to by both of us!  Bring on vacation!

5.  This one’s tricky.  I’ve not been actively working on my health, but I have been maintaining.  I am still drinking loads of water, but my diet is in need of improvement.  I haven’t been cooking at home as much and I’ve been relying on convenience foods.  So while my weight and vitals are good, I still have improvements to make in this area.

So there you have it – I think I’m at about 50% in terms of my goals.  #2 is the one I’m most concerned will not be met.  I’ll keep trying though – every day is a chance for improvement!

 

 

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Epic Road Trip – The Story Concludes

It took me longer to get my legs back under me than I expected, but as promised here is the conclusion to my epic Supernatural weekend.  (Let’s just say I will DEFINITELY go to another convention sometime soon!)

Here’s my photo with Kim Rhodes, who is just awesome.  Seriously, what a funny and sweet lady she is.  I just love her!

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I left my last post just as we finished up the first part of the costume contest.  For the Castiel part, of course Misha came out to judge and he asked each person to identify which Cas they were dressed as.  One person said he was “Destiel Cas” and Misha claimed to not know what that was, so he recruited a fem!Dean from the audience to join Destiel Cas on stage to show him what that meant.  The two kissed (consensual!) and the crowd went wild!

Then we settled down for Misha’s panel.  I was in line to ask him a question so I can’t say that I remember a lot about what was asked or the answers he gave.  I was behind the person who asked him to look into the audience and say “We’ve got a gif for that”, which of course, it now breaking the Internets as we speak!

I debated on whether or not to talk about my question in great detail on my blog, but after finding a video of it, I am incredibly proud of my courage to ask and delighted with the answer that Misha gave.  Many people came up to me afterwards and gave positive feedback; I even heard that some people discussed it on tumblr and were emotionally moved by it.  I’m glad.  The naysayers that shared their negativity and wank can cram it.  I’m old enough to not have to give a fu…

Here’s what I asked:

“We’re around the same age and we have kids around the same age.  I’m a single mom though.  Do you have any parenting advice or wisdom you could share from a dad’s perspective on raising kids?”

Misha was floored that we are the same age (actually Baby Misha, I’m just a little older than you!) and he tipped his hat to how hard it is to be a single mom.  I was not expecting either of those reactions!  We bantered for a bit and he teased me about coming to a Supernatural convention and neglecting my child.

But his answer was really great.  He spoke of an older man in his neighborhood who took him and his brother under his wing and provided guidance and wisdom to them and his advice was to find people like that to surround my child.  I’m lucky that I have a solid and wonderful base of people who do exactly that (shout out to the ones who read this blog – you know who you are!).

My question starts at 15:52 and runs about 4 minutes.  I got 4 minutes of talking time with Misha Collins!  Whoop!

I didn’t get to stay long enough to pick up my Misha photo so I’ll have to share that in a few weeks when I receive it.

Next up were autographs with Matt Cohen, who is just the cutest little thing, and Sebastian Roche, and Misha.  The convention organizers wouldn’t let any of the stars do personalized autographs, but at least we got to speak with them a bit and make eye contact and it wasn’t as rushed through as the photos.

By this time I was on a pure adrenaline rush, so when it was time for the cabaret, I think I lost my shiznit!  It was fun.  Each star came out and sang but Gil McKinney stole the show.

Oh, did I tell you I inadvertently made a pass at Gil?  If not, I did.  I rode down in the elevator with him that morning and I asked him how his first time at convention was going.  He said it had been good so I said “So what you’re saying is that we were gentle with you.”  Then I immediately realized what I said and follow up with, “Well, that didn’t come out right, did it?”  He just chuckled and said that he wasn’t awake enough for it to register so it was okay!

Gil was a music major in college (me too Gil!) and he serenaded us with John Legend’s “All of Me”.  (YouTube the video.)  It was beautiful.  Gil is beautiful and so sweet!  And kinda shy!

After the Cabaret was the After Party.  I was dancing but not on the dance floor and I was doing something with my hips when I bumped into someone.  I had hardly turned around before I was enveloped in a strong set of arms…which happened to belong to Matt Cohen!  He told me I needed to take that shaking booty onto the dance floor!

I’m not even sure how I managed to get any sleep that night.

Jared & Jensen

Because I purchased Gold tickets, I got to have two panels with Jared and Jensen.  They come across as so down to earth.  Jared is the outgoing one and I appreciated that he really tried to answer everyone’s questions thoughtfully, unlike Sebastian who didn’t answer any!  Jensen seems so shy but you can tell that Jared really brings out his sense of humor and they play off of each other.  I can’t really remember specific things they said other than Jensen saying that Dean was so far gone there was really nothing that could be said to turn the boat around.

Here’s my photos with Jared and Jensen.
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The one with Jensen just makes my heart so happy.  It’s like his prettiness just rubs off on you and you can’t help but look pretty if he’s around!

Being hugged by Jared is like being wrapped in a big fuzzy blanket!  Honestly his whole hand could cover my face.  He’s so personable though, you just forget that he’s a celebrity and get lost in his hug!

We had another panel with Jared & Jensen and then with Misha & Mark.  I was truly impressed by Mark Sheppard.  He is like sci-fi royalty to me – he’s been in everything!  I’ve seen interviews with him where I thought he came off very stand offish but in his panel he was very open and friendly.  When I went to take my picture with him, I (inadvertently) “Hello, sweetie!”, which I honestly didn’t mean to do but he was so sweet I couldn’t help myself.  He gave me a big hug in the photo – I’m eager to get it to see how it turned out!

In Misha’s photo, I stepped up and said hi and then asked him to dance with me!  So we did a tango move!  I’ll post when I get it.

One other thing that really stuck out – when I got Jensen’s autograph, he made eye contact with me and it was like he looked right into my soul.  That man has some very attractive eyes!  I know he does that to everyone during the autograph stint, but it really does make you feel special.  I thanked him for taking time away from his family to do this convention for us and he looked up at me, first with a surprised look, then he told me thank you and met my eyes.  No wonder Dean has such a beautiful soul – you can see it in Jensen’s eyes!

By the time I finished all of that, an announcement was made that the Jensen and Jared photos would be ready around 8, so I grabbed a quick dinner and picked up my photos.  I was so tired and still had a 2-hour ride to make so I decided to leave early and missed Rachel Miner’s panel.  I heard about 5 minutes of it and she seemed so nice.  I wish I could have stayed.

I also missed Mark, Rob, and Richard’s autographs by leaving early.  Next time I go I will make sure to stay Sunday night too so I can go to everything on the schedule.

In Conclusion:

This was the single best weekend of my life.  I made some great new friends and was continually amazed at how sweet, friendly, and kind all of the Supernatural fans were.  I sincerely appreciate how respectful they are of the stars.  It’s because of that behavior that we fans get to have such up close and personal contact with them!

The stars of the show are so comfortable and down-to-earth.  They are just regular people who happen to be on TV.  Each one has a story and in some small way we each have a commonality with their story.  I was also a music major in college, like Gil; I recently had a life-changing medical emergency, like Rob; I also have a 6 year old daughter, like Kim; I’m the same age as Misha; like Jensen, I identify strongly with Dean’s sense of loyalty to his family; Jared and I both play kinda rough with our kids.  Each of us has something to share and we’re more alike than you might think.

If you are a fan of Supernatural, I strongly encourage you to save your pennies and go to one of these conventions.  You will not regret a single minute of it.  If you’re not a fan of SPN but of something else, find one for your interest and go.  Hands down, one of the best experiences you could ever have!

Epic Road Trip – To be continued!

I haven’t forgotten you my lovelies!  I only got home late yesterday and the last day and half of convention was mad!  I promise to finish the story later this evening, once I’ve gotten my feet back under me.  But until then, here’s a basic summary.

IT WAS EPIC!

Til then!

Epic Road Trip, Day 3, Part Duex or something

First off, I am so tired that my vision is blurred and I can barely see what I’m typing.  Lawd!

Yesterday started with an Osric and Gil panel.  Gil is new to the con world and hasn’t worked with Osric before on set.  They both thought it was an odd pairing and it kinda was.  Someone in the audience told them to hug it out, so they did.  Osric said, “Oh great.  Another guy I have to go on my toes for.”  And Gil, who has been a bit reserved about this whole con thing says in reply, “Better than your knees!”

Sebastian Roche was up next.  His panels are labeled “for adults only” and now I understand why.  Even before he took the stage, he was making obscene hand gestures on the projector!  He answered about zero questions, although he did let three people ask questions.  He just didn’t answer but instead gyrated around stage and sorta sang and rambled.  He made up a song, we’ll call it, “I Know You’re Ready for My Jelly” and he asked how many people were virgins and then asked which hole.  We learned that his favorite word is motherfu…and that he really can’t complete an entire sentence about something before he’s off to the next thing.  It was entirely too entertaining and raunchy.

Here’s my picture with Sebastian:

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I attended the live webcast of Misha’s TSA America, which was an exclusive event to raise money for Random Acts.  The first short starred Daneel Ackles and was inappropriate in so many ways.  The second short was by far funnier and will be the subject of may a fan manip for Destiel purposes.

During Richard, Matt, and Rob’s panel we learned Richard and Robbie Thompson (one of the writers) are very good friends.  A fan asked if the little eye wiggle in Meta Fiction was a yes or no on Gabriel still being alive and Richard said that it is Robbie’s intention that the answer is yes and Gabriel is still alive.

I have mixed feelings about that.  Gabriel is a great character and it would be fun to have him back but I kinda want him to stay dead.  His death was meaningful and to bring him back takes the impact away of how he stood up to Lucifer.  Although, if Gabe isn’t dead then maybe Balthazar isn’t either and he can come back too!

Here’s my manwich with Richard and Matt, who were super sweet and great huggers!

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The costume contest was great.  There were a lot of entries.  Here’s the winner.  I’d say this girl is on fire.

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That’s all I have time for this morning.  I will try to post later today about Misha’s panel and my question, along with the Cabaret party and after party.

Today is Jensen and Jared’s panel, Misha and Mark’s panel, and then photo ops with Jensen, Jared, Misha, and Mark.  Another exciting day ahead!

Epic Road Trip, Day 3?

I haven’t been out of this hotel since yesterday and I’ve lost count of the days.  I woke up thinking it was Tuesday.

So let me just say up front – there will be a Part Duex to this Part Un because I am beyond freaking exhausted and I have to go to sleep and I have too much to tell!

BUT…

The absolute highlight of my day was ASKING MISHA A QUESTION in his panel!

It was an epic day.

Tomorrow I’ll try to update you on today and tomorrow and I’ll post my Kim, Seb, and Richard/Matt photos, along with their stories!

 

Epic Road Trip, Day 2, Part Duex

Oh my gosh, what a fabulous day!

I started out by doing a bit of sight seeing.  Since my hotel was literally one street away from the back of Arlington National Cemetery, I started there, followed by a hilltop view of the Pentagon, and ending with the Air Force Memorial.

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Isn’t that spectacular?!

Around noon I wound my way over to the convention hotel and eagerly awaited the festivities to start.

Richard Speight opened us up, with the first guest being Osric Chau.  He cosplayed Braveheart.  I’d share the main stage photos but the lighting is terrible and my photos are blurry.

Osric was cool.  He is such a fan girl!  He has such a crush on Mark Sheppard too!

He told us about his first job working at a grocery store.  He said they paid him $6 a hour and made him clean the meat room.  Gross!  It would take 1 1/2 hours for him to do it, until they told him he was taking too long and he needed to do it in 30 mins!  He pointed out that that would mean they’d paid him $3 to clean the room where meat was processed.  Ewwww gross.  So he said he turned in his two week notice and then said he was taking vacation to France the next day and would be gone for two weeks!  Too funny!

Here’s my pic with Osric:

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I literally have no clue.

Then came Kim Rhodes.  Om my gosh, I was not expecting her to be so wide open, but I love it!  She is funny, witty, smart and just as bad ass as Jody Mills.  She told us her “starfish story” – anytime she’s confused about she has to do, she throws her arms out to the sides, tilts her head back and yells “Find a happy place!  Find a happy place!”  I am so totally using that the next time I get stressed!

Kim has a 6 year special needs daughter and I have such respect for her.  I’m the mom of a 6 year old girl too and I know first hand how tough that is, so I can totally relate.  You can tell that Kim is so comfortable with herself – I think she is my new hero.  Move aside Misha!

I didn’t make it back to the photo op room in time to pick up my photo with Kim.  After hearing her speak, I just had to meet her.  She was super sweet and is a big hugger and it was great!

The fabulousness continued with Gil McKinney (Henry Winchester).  This was his first con and he was a bit gun shy but he got into it.  The memorable moment was him telling us that at age 15 he used to take girls back to his house to watch Aladdin because he thought the girls would make out with him while watching it!  Of course then he told us that it never really worked that way!  He also ‘fessed up to liking The Little Mermaid!

Chad Lindberg (Ash) was last up tonight.  I had no idea how into the paranormal he is.  He brought all sorts of gadgets with him and showed us how they work.  He had a ghost box or a spirit box.  Basically a device that scans high frequency radio signals at a high speed to try to detect paranormal activity.  He turned it on and started asking questions.  He asked if there was a spirit here and I kid you not, SOMETHING said YES, clear as a bell.  That is giving me chills just thinking about it.

He also told us about a time he was on a ghost hunt and was challenging a spirit.  He asked what it was and that it replied a demon (boy that is freaky).  He said three days after that he was at home and the back of his neck started hurting and burning.  When he took a look at it in the mirror there were 3 scratch marks down the back of his neck!  Oh my goodness!

He also said that although he’d never been to New Orleans, he wanted to go because he believed that some of the people there, when you look in their eyes, you can tell that they are not human.  Now I’ve been to NO and that place is creepy I’ll give him that…but I’ll admit that it freaks me out to even for one second believe there are things other than humans roaming the Earth.  Supernatural indeed!

And once again I have to give a huge shout out to the SPN fandom.  I keep meeting new people and talking to some of the folks I met just yesterday…I was invited to have dinner with a new set of friends.  This has to be the warmest, loveliest group of fans I’ve ever met.  I am utterly amazed at the kindness and friendliness of the crowd.

The evening was supposed to end with a karaoke party (which I can still hear going on!) but I elected to skip.  I have a dear friend from college that lives in Arlington that I haven’t seen in many, many years and we scheduled a dinner together this evening.  It was a wonderful way to end this awesome day.

Tomorrow is jam packed with even more good things and I can’t wait to post.  Misha’s panel is tomorrow and I’ve got a few more photo ops and autographs to get.  There’s a party tomorrow night and an after party after that so I hope I’ll be able to sneak some time in to give you an update and photos of what’s been happening.

Until then have some Supernatural dreams!

Epic Road Trip, Day 2

The day started beautifully…I hardly ever get to sleep in so what a pleasure to wake up a little later than normal and not be in a rush to go somewhere or do something this morning!

I thought about trying to get some sight seeing in today.  The convention schedule is a little less hectic and other than Osric and Kim, there aren’t a lot of other things I want to do there today.  I’m in Pentagon City and literally within walking distance of the Pentagon and Arlington National Cemetery so it seems a shame to waste the opportunity.

Imagine my surprise when I pulled back the curtains of my hotel room to let in the sun and saw this.

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Wow.

I can check that off the list and I didn’t even have to leave my hotel to do it.  Awesome.

I’m planning on making another post this evening, once I’m done with Osric’s panel and had gotten his and Kim Rhodes’ autographs.  I hope to have some fun things to share with you!