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FRIDAY!!! Always one of the best days of the week. I have been making a lot of progress on my feature script in the last few days. My outline is pretty solid, and I think I am going to hit page 10 of the script itself at some point this weekend. My loose goal is to do 10 pages a week (to get a complete rough draft by mid-July), but I think I can probably go faster than that. I’d love to have a second rough draft by the beginning of August for some select people to review. That’s the goal anyway… if I can stick to this, then if I happen to make it to the second round of the competition I entered I will be in a very good place for consideration.
ALSO – we saw Bubble for the first time Wednesday!!! I am so very, very happy with what we captured. The story is already present, and once we get the missing pieces from our pick-ups on June 1st then we will really be rolling. I meet with Ted next Tuesday to discuss score/sound, and Jim will also start his work soon on the CGI elements. James will be doing all the titles and branding, which will be very fun to place in. Joe did an amazing job putting all of the pieces together! I was prepared to still be in a very rough stage at this point, but it is looking good. There is nothing more motivating than watching a project turn into something special. I can’t wait for everyone to see it.
James and I have been doing good with our weight-loss, 3 1/2 weeks to go! I might extend that to 4 weeks…we will see how the progress goes. I would still like to get about 6-8 pounds lighter. I’ve been having MAJOR cravings for a sunny vacation near the water. I am also looking forward with all of my heart to Bonnaroo. I think this summer is going to be a fantastic one!
I haven’t done a favorite things list in a long time, so today I want to do one as a reminder of all the wonderful things in my life that I love:
1. Sitting in a park on a beautiful day
2. Making a meal with people that I enjoy being around
3. Watching the yellow ATL airplane make circles around the city
4. Making movies
6. Dreaming of all the possibilities, and feeling as though they can all come true
7. Popcorn and bad TV
10. The comfort of sunshine on my skin
11. Petting Baby Kitty as I wake up in the morning
12. Friends new and old
13. Planning trips with my family
14. Bonnaroo! The countdown has begun…
15. The excitement of doing anything new
16. Challenging myself to do things that scare me
17. Most of all… I am so very grateful to have an optimistic attitude and fighting spirit.
Tonight I get to see the first rough cut of Bubble! I could jump 10 feet in the air with excitement. I will let you guys know how it goes.
Happy last day of April, 2013! This month held a lot of action, that’s for sure: a movie was made, trips were taken, conferences attended and spring events galore. Looks like May will be just as active on similar fronts, but I am taking the time to make sure some duty-free days are built in. This girl loves to rest just as much as she loves to do. Give me a day to sleep in, a morning of TV and an afternoon in the park and I am as good as recharged. If I don’t get my days of rest, then I become stretched too thin.
This past weekend I had the opportunity to visit my sister and her family in Columbus, GA, which is always a nice retreat. Sunday we did Twelve in ATL… a wonderful event for a rainy night. We opened our windows so we could hear the rain and occasional thunder roll while enjoying some delicious food. Each Twelve never fails to disappoint… even when we only have eleven! We knew eventually the magic number of attendees would be broken, sometimes things happen last minute that you can’t help. That just meant one extra portion of each dish, so someone got a lucky helping each time.
This month we will be working on pick-up shots as well for Bubble, scheduled for the 19th. It will be so much fun to see everyone again, and to also get everything we need in the can. I can’t wait to see it all put together in the first cut!
James and I are back on the weight-loss bus for the month of May… we are so close to our goals that I can taste it! The goal is to be at our dream weights by Bonnaroo, something we both really look forward to every year. I have increased what I want to lose by a few pounds, so I’d like to do 10 more in the next 5 weeks. James has about the same amount as well. Luckily, we’ve both been really good about keeping off what we already lost earlier in the year. It’s so awesome to have a partner to share successes with, as well as to understand when hangry (hungry + angry) hits. It will be so nice to be DONE.
Today I submit my screenplay for the competition I’ve been telling you guys about. I don’t want to say what it is b/c of jinxing factors, but keep your fingers crossed for me! I won’t know until later in the year, I’m sure. Even if I don’t win a slot to work with established writers, it was still good to get me refocused on my future goals. I was talking to James this weekend about my book, and whether or not it is even necessary. My umbrella goal is to hopefully make a feature, and adding a book into that process seems arbitrary. My thoughts were that it would help finance production, but honestly I think I can find a way to make it happen without having to take that route. Plus, there is no guarantee that my book would sell enough to have been worth the effort. So it isn’t set in stone, but my idea is to just tackle the screenplay and bypass the rest. That way if I do get selected for this competition, I will have something ready to work on come January. And even if I don’t get to make this specific feature myself, I will still pursue other ways to have the story made (by another director or studio, etc.). Lesson learned is this: I can only focus on one thing at a time to give it true justice. Putting unrealistic timetables on things doesn’t help at all with momentum. As long as I’m creatively fulfilled by a project in front of me, then that’s what matters!
Last night I had one of the best unexpected evenings. After a quick lunch with Vero, I asked her if she wanted to hang out later on. Of course she volunteered to make dinner at her place, and I took her up on it. Shortly after arriving at 6, we opened a bottle of red wine and she cooked up some delicious vegetables with her famous seasonings and dressings. I love sitting in Vero’s kitchen while she cooks, there is something very peaceful about watching her do her thing while smelling the aromas our upcoming dinner. Plus, she always puts cheese out. This particular evening the wind was strong since we were expecting storms later in the night. Vero opened her windows and the breeze came in at leisure. She had some fantastic French tunes on surround sound… and I was pretty much in heaven. After dinner, she gave me her famous “tour de chocolate” where she gives you tiny samples of Belgian chocolate and you have to guess the flavor (saved only for special occasions!). I probably tried about 8 of them, with thyme being my favorite. Once we were done consuming things, we went into her living room and watch Beasts of the Southern Wild (my second time to see it). I kept saying, I am going to leave in 10 minutes… about ten times. I ended up watching the whole movie with her while she prepped her Magic City Art Connection pieces. As I left her house, the wind picked up even more creating spooky sounds in the trees. It was just a wonderful night all around. I went to bed peaceful and happy.
We got our raw footage back from our editor Joe Walker, which is essentially untouched video from our shoot. This weekend James and I will go through it all and make/compare notes that we will then share back with our post production team. I am really looking forward to absorbing it all and seeing what we captured in a relaxed atmosphere. Joe says the footage is phenomenal… which makes me feel so excited!
I got my 23 and me report back, but that might need to be a blog post all on its own next week. It was a lot of fun to read my results, I learned a lot of valuable information about my ancestry and overall health. More on that soon…
It’s been a few days since I’ve checked in on my blog! To say I’ve been busy would be the understatement of the existence of time. First and foremost – WE REACHED OUR FUNDRAISING GOAL!! Holllllla. Thank you so very, very much to all of you who contributed or shared our project to your friends. In case you didn’t know, the story Bubble won over all the others. I am very happy about this, however, it would have been an honor to make any of the three. Bubble will be thrilling, beautiful and haunting. We plan to post a lot leading up to production next week to keep you all in the loop with our process.
Other things have been going on behind the scenes which have been making this April busier than usual. James moved into a new house last weekend, so we spent the better part of Saturday and Sunday getting that done. This week there has been a lot of preparation for a big event related to my 9-5 which took place last night, and was a big hit! So glad it is now in the books and will be remembered fondly. Tonight- I am doing absolutely nothing nothing nothing. Just going to sit back and kick it with the Baby Kitty!
I am honestly surprised that I could even do a blog post today due to exhaustion. But all I could think about this morning was writing, as it was very high on my list of things to do today. I love that my blog is so important to me, and is ingrained in my daily thinking.
And last but not least, Crush will be screening this weekend at the Ozark Foothills Film Festival! It will open for the feature The Romance of Loneliness, which Rebecca and I are both so proud of. We wish we could be there!!
Last night was the inaugural Birmingham Girl’s Club meeting, headed up by Sherri Ross Walters! I was expecting awesomeness, but what I experienced was far, far beyond that. A little over 30 of us showed up, eager to see what this group would be all about. We went around the table and gave a brief snapshot of ourselves and individual projects. The coolest thing about the gathering was that nobody was cooler or more important than the next… everyone felt invited and respected. All ages were represented as well. All that was required was an open mind and passionate spirit. There isn’t a full-on agenda yet for the group, but Sherri is well on her way to finding how we can all help each other. We actually spent part of the meeting writing down ideas about just that – how to make this group effective and meaningful for all involved. If you are a lady in the ‘ham, you must keep up with this group. It will definitely inspire you to follow your dreams while having a group of cheerleaders constantly by your side! Every city should have a resource like this one.
This weekend is going to be a busy one. I am heading to Atlanta tonight to see Mr. James… been close to two weeks since I’ve seen his face! Tomorrow we will attend the first ever Yard 54 brunch, then we go straight to Nashville for Twelve on Sunday. James and I are also going to spend quite a bit of time working on preproduction for our upcoming short film to be shot in mid-April. Next week holds some big decisions (we will finally know our story!) and meetings that we need to prepare for. Also, during our artistic team meeting this past Thursday we came up with some great ideas that need to be modified within the scripts themselves. Soon on the docket will be storyboarding, shot lists and production schedules. It’s all a fun process, so we are trying to enjoy every minute of it. Thanks to everyone who has shown us support so far.
There are some other big things on the horizon that I am hopeful to share over the next few weeks. Please send good energy and thoughts as you can spare them my way. As my friend Misty Herron would say, I feel like a duck… calm on the surface but paddling like hell underneath.
My nieces have changed my world. I don’t think I quite appreciated the innocence and spirit of a child until they came around. I always said that I felt like I had had enough of babies and kids growing up as the oldest child of four. I remember changing diapers and carrying them around on my hip at a very young age. I was babysitting by age 10 or so and was thoroughly trained in the responsibilities of looking after another human being. But now I feel like it is a much different experience being around little ones. Last night Lily kept asking me to play with her in the sweetest little voice, and just having me by her side made her whole world. When mom put her down to sleep, we could hear her on the baby monitor saying… “I love you, I love you, Goodnight Mimi! Sweet Dreams Mimi! Goodnight! I love you!” After about ten minutes of this heartbreaking chatter, mom let me go and bring her back upstairs. The whole way back I told her how special she was and how much we loved her. She can now understand most of what we say, and it is the sweetest thing to see a child comprehend that they are completely adored. My other two nieces Anna and Lucy are in Disney World right now enjoying all things magical and fun. Keep the pictures coming Christy!
This weekend is the one year anniversary from the first day I met James. I still remember it like it was yesterday – this really nice, energetic, passionate soul sat down next to me at a group dinner at Rojo. We exchanged Instagram handles.. and the rest is history! hahaha I did get to spend a little more time with him that weekend before he continued on his documentary adventure around the south. After he left we talked every single day until he returned home to Atlanta about a month later, where we then had our first official date. Sometimes I think time flies by… but when I think about all that we have done in the last 365 days I realize we have taken advantage of every single moment. We already have so many memories. Thanks James for coming into my life and making it shine.
Speaking of us, as most of you know we are taking on a short film project together in the coming months! You can follow our blog here, or stay tuned to news on our Four x Facebook page. We are launching some pretty exciting things next week that I hope you all will want to be a part of. Most of all, I can’t wait to share the three short stories I have been working on!
So much to report this Monday!
First things first – Crush has a mini website! Also, James and I have launched a blog to keep you guys up-to-date on our upcoming short film – check it out here. In just a few weeks we will be launching an interactive fundraising campaign that I think will be a lot of fun. More very soon on all of that after our first production meeting tomorrow night.
We had our third Twelve yesterday in Atlanta, this time all vegetarian. They just keep getting better and more delicious! We will be posting photos and recipes tomorrow on Pinterest, so stay tuned. We will also be announcing our upcoming Twelve in Nashville in the next few days. If you are interested in attending, just sign up via the website.
Vero came up to Atlanta with me, which was a real treat. We went running every morning together, both days in light snow. I was very proud of myself for A. getting up early to exercise, and B. braving the below freezing temps. The second morning I came really close to bailing, but I powered through! My knee has been giving me trouble lately… but only after I go certain distances. 4-6 miles seems to be high range before it starts to get aggravated. In all honestly though, I am happy to just do that. That is long enough to feel like I’ve done a solid run. I can also keep challenging myself with various terrains and time goals.
This week I am going to focus intensely on personal projects. I want to pour energy in creating and checking things off the master list. I am feeling energized and inspired… might as well take full advantage.
Today I blog as a 34-year-old for the first time! I had the best best best birthday weekend, with everything I could have hoped for – time with family, delicious food (thanks Pushstart Kitchen and Rawle Fraser!), time outdoors, adventures and an abundance of love. Throw in a little Valentine’s Day celebration and you have the perfect weekend. Thanks to everyone who wished me a happy birthday!
Birthdays are the start of a new year in a lot of ways, so I thought I would spend a little time updating you all on my 2013 goals. My writing is going very well… I’m not writing an hour every day as I hoped I would, but I’ve made more progress than ever before since the beginning of the year. Not only that, I’ve taken on a new short story goal for the next week or two. My plan is to write three short stories (one of them already done), then possibly choose one to make a short film out of over the course of the next 3-4 months. I feel like waiting until I have a finished novel is just too long before tackling another film project. After talking with Rebecca about the success of Crush (which is showing no signs of stopping), we both feel that independently we should be keeping the momentum up. This weekend at the Oxford Film Festival we plan to do a creative brainstorming session to see which individual directions make the most sense. We will also have Vero & James with us on the trip, so that will double the creative energy.
James and I are still doing really well with our weight-loss. I am down about 13 pounds, and he’s lost 18! I know I’ve said this about 20 times already, but it is so helpful to have him on this journey with me. Mostly because we both get “hangry” at about the same times (a fierce combination of anger and hunger), and we also hold each other accountable. Usually I am a loner with it comes to physical initiatives, but without a doubt we are better as a team.
I have found a significant key to life happiness – and that is doing. Talking and dreaming have their rightful and rewarding place, but actually taking the steps to achieve is where the joy lies. In some ways it’s even better than the final product of your actions. I love being in an active state of doing at all times. There is a thrill in problem solving, a mystery in the unknown and a fulfillment in the tiniest steps along the way. As long as I’m doing, I’m happy.
It’s my birthday week!! WOOOOOT. I started the festivities off early with a mini birthday celebration (with the fabulous Sherri Ross) in Birmingham on Saturday afternoon at Avondale Park. The weather was sunny and warm…the perfect day to relax and hang with friends. Our friend Carrie even brought her pedicab which we then gave rides on around the little pond area. Thanks to everyone that came out!
I like having a birthday in the same week as Valentine’s Day, as the word love is easy to come by. I know it isn’t everyone’s favorite holiday, but even being single I found happiness as this day rolled around each year. Love comes in all shapes and sizes, as well as phases. The feelings of sharing and giving should be something expressed year-round. More than likely, you have someone or something to express your love to – whether it be a pet, a person, your home or anything else you adore. This day is only a reminder to recognize those gifts.
Speaking of gifts, I’ve already gotten a few great ones! James gave me 23andme…which is something that I’ve wanted to do for some time now. You basically spit in a vile and ship it off, then in 4-6 weeks they tell you a bunch of genetic information about your health and ancestry. James also did one for himself, so we should get ours back at about the same time. I will be sure to share once I get the report back. Sarah Miller also gave me one of her original art pieces of Sloss Furnance which I am SUPER excited about, since it is my favorite Birmingham landmark. Thank you so much Sarah!
I will be spending my actual birthday in Atlanta and Columbus this weekend with my family. It’s Anna Banana’s birthday as well, so I will be happy to share the party with that sweet little one. My only priorities are to: 1. jump on a trampoline, 2. eat a bite of birthday cake, 3. relax, and 4. be happy. And… take lots of Instagram photos!
Today I want to leave you with these thoughts, which were forwarded to me by my friend Sarah Hodo this morning:
“The problem, often not discovered until late in life, is that when you look for things in life like love, meaning, motivation, it implies they are sitting behind a tree or under a rock. The most successful people in life recognize, that in life they create their own love, they manufacture their own meaning, they generate their own motivation. For me, I am driven by two main philosophies: Know more today about the world than I knew yesterday. And lessen the suffering of others. You’d be surprised how far that gets you. “
- Neil deGrasse Tyson