I had just arrived in Chicago and I was excited about so many many things. I was right to be. My 8 years here have changed me in so many ways. It took a few years but I reconnected with theater, I made a better connection with film and television, I connected with a new side of music, I connected with a man who I made my husband.
Now, as a mere 8 years have passed, I am preparing to say goodbye to Chicago. I am arranging myself for major life changes.
In the end of February Wonderful Husband™ and I will be moving to L.A.(ish).
And that isn't even the biggest change.
In the end of March Wonderful Husband™ will be moving to Japan for 13 months to work at Universal Studios Japan as part of the Harry Potter Experience (he's a wizard!!).
It is so much to think about and prepare for and anticipate. I think about being away from him for 13 months and my heart breaks. I think about what he is sacrificing so we can both focus on our careers and not have to stress over safety jobs and I know that he, and these 13 months, are worthy of my heartbreak. I know I have to work harder than I ever have on my career to make myself worthy of this sacrifice he is making.
So many people here have touched my life. They have made me better and stronger and I will miss them. Many of them have already made that westerly move and I am excited and reassured to be joining them.
It will be a long time to not have him as part of my day to day. There will be visits to Japan in which time I will fill my heart and my senses with him and with the newness of my first genuine foreign land.
We will spend it turning the calendar with one of my favorite theater family members and lifting glasses high in cheer of the future and of all of the love and support we have as we make this next huge step in our lives. It really couldn't be a more perfect way to make this moment.
Stay Safe. Stay Happy. Know that your are loved.
Happy New Year Everyone!
With 145.00 I can take Pete with me AND I can get pictures of it all. For 175.00 I can take Pete with me and get pictures AND video of it.
What'cha say? Just a few dollars....
Here's the long sloppy link to donate.
*Edit- Mady a tide link for it
Pretty pretty please.....
Four pretty major life things by the time I turn 40 at the end of this month.
The 4 things are:
1) "Professional Actor Tool Kit" Completed. This means a reel, headshots and up-to-date resumes. I have the reel. I have some resume edits to do but that will be done this week/end. Headshots have been taken by the wonderful
moonbird and as soon as they are edited they will be off to the printer (thanks to Pete for that being my Christmas gift).
2) New Skill added to my resume. For that, my wonderful friend Amy is going to be working one on one with me for some stage combat training.
3) Leave the contiguous 48 states. It is something I have never done. Pete and I have plans in the work to try to make a long weekend trip and drive to Canada.
4) Go skydiving.
It is the last two for which I need your help. Both of these things cost a pretty penny so I am asking for donations to the cause of living a fuller life. Please, if you are compelled to give me something for my birthday do this. I don't need more things. I don't need more drinks or dinners. In lieu of any of that please toss a few bucks into here so I can have a good vacation and jump out of an airplane.
And, as added incentive a few things-
Anyone who donates will get my undying gratitude.
Anyone who donates at least 25.00 I will write something for you. A short story, a poem, a haiku, a special fortune cookie message- I don't know. Bout you get a writing that is all yours.
Anyone who donates at least 50.00 bucks I'll make you a video. Maybe I'll sing you a song. Maybe I'll put on a puppet show. Again- I don't know. But it will be a video just for you to say thank you for supporting me in this and helping me to reach these goals.
So, if you would, please toss a few coins in the hat.
I will live more fully. I will go on an adventure. I will take pictures and write stories. I will have a little more life experience that will help me be a better actor.
And I will have the best 40th birthday a gal could have.
Oh, and if 3 of you buy tickets using my little link then I get a discount...or points to use on other stuff...or a refund of the 12.00 I spent....so please use my link.
C'mon, when was the last time you got movie tickets for 6.00 that you could use at any movie (as long as it is via Fandango)?
Wander over to my "fan" page and check out the discussions as I just made a long and drawn out post about wonderful places for you to shop for your holidays! I talk about more than a few of you so ya might want to give it a gander. :-)
If you want to keep up with me for stuff that is more interesting than how much I love my cats, please wander over and give the "LIKE" button a little click. And please feel free to pass this around to others.
Kalina Kitten McCreery Fan Page- Don't you wanna show me some love...or at least some LIKE
I need some help from my sewing/ crafty friends.
For DragonCon I usually get a 3'x6' piece of black foam core to serve as a backboard/ display for merchandise. WE get a new one every year as at the end of the con if can be a little beat up and even if it wasn't it isn't like Voltaire or I could take it on our flight home. I usually pick it up in my Dad's van (which he no longer has) or I have it delivered (which having it delivered to the hotel is complicated and expensive). Not to mention the fact that buying a new one every year gets costly when you add it all up.
This year I want to get a very very heavy duty piece of black fabric. I can throw in some grommets and tie it to the banisters like we did with the foam core last year. It should be easier to manage and something I can pack up and take away to use for later events. I almost want "curtain blacks" but they are probably a bit heavier than I need, they would be too expensive, and I honestly don't think I can find them that small.
I am thinking a super heavy muslin...or some kind of upholstery material...I don't know.
So, I need suggestions.
The catch, this is something that I need to be able to get in Chicago on Monday (before I leave), in Atlanta on Wednesday (after my arrival), or something I can order this weekend (or Monday) and have delivered to Atlanta by Weds. evening or Thursday morning at the latest.
If you have suggestions of fabric to use or places to shop please let me know.Thanks!!!
This time around I must shout the praises of John McLaughlin and the Rouges.
On Sunday I made jaunt a to Madison, Wi. to catch up with some friends and revel in the creative brilliance that is Hellblinki Sextet. Little did I know that I would be completely blown away but the opening band: John McLaughlin and the Rouges.
Zoot Suits and an Upright Bass were my first clue that I was going to like them. Add to that a sound that is a brilliant line between old jazz and early swing with just a touch of gravel and soul and I am in love.
The band has a couple of covers, like Minnie the Moocher set to traditional New Orleans Funeral March and Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah which they somehow manage to make even darker and more romantic. But most of the material was original with themes of the dark and fanciful. And, further testament to the genius of the performance is the vocal stylings presented through a mic with the nostalgic look and sound of the 1930's/ 40's Carbon Mics. (And this is a mic that I understand McLaughlin made himself. Yeah, I knew you'd be impressed.)
Billing themselves as "Eerie Americana" their music is perfect for the set up pieces when a Radio Theater Company does a true revival of The Shadow. I also fully anticipate every burlesque performer in the country to be scrabbling to commission the band for rights to use in performances.
They have a CD release party in Milwaukee Jun 4th and if you can make it out you certainly should. It is a show you won't want to miss.
And a note to my promoter/ booking agent friends: You will want to get your hands on this band before they are too popular to afford.
He let me know there were flowers at the theater for me which were delivered on Sunday.
I went by after work to get them....
To whomever sent them: THANK YOU!!!
They are so beautiful! And your message...thank you. From that deep tender part of my heart- thank you. This past year has been a real beast and I have questioned my choice to move (back) to Chicago and so many other choices. Thank you for reminding me that the stress and sacrifice hasn't been for nothing. There has been some triumph to all of it.
You are right- I should celebrate.
It was a delightful surprise and exactly what I needed.
(And really someone needs to get on that teleportation thing.)
What is this wonderful thing?
High Midnight the first novel from up and coming writer Rob Mosca
Rob is a wonderful man and a brilliant writer. I have been following him on LJ for years and his creative ramblings never disappoint.
You should click links now to make this book your purchase for my birthday and become my new favorite person. While there you should also purchase a copy for yourself or you will be sad. And you should purchase copies for everyone you like. Then you will also become their new favorite person as well.
Something you might not know is that Rob delayed the release of this publication so it would deliver near my birthday. Granted, he will tell you that it was due to formatting issues and a few other technical things. But we all know better. ;-) *
*Yes, I totally made that part up.
I am on an email list for Ben And Jerry's Ice Cream. I am sure that will be of no surprise to anyone. Well, last year in the early spring they sent the email with the release of their new flavors for the season. One of the flavors was Mission to Marzipan. I was so excited. See, my mother's favorite candy was marzipan. So many years as a child there was the trip to the mall in Albany to Swiss Colony to get Mom the box of marzipan candies shaped and colored to look like little fruits. This wasn't the candy but it was a new form of Mom's favorite sweet treat.
I sent up the call for help- People in the Atlanta area- find somewhere that carries Mission to Marzipan, get it and deliver it to my Mom for her birthday.
Several people looked. People looked around Atlanta and suburbs near and far.
No Luck. Mission to Marzipan was no where to be found in the south.
A little more investigation (including an email to Ben and Jerry's) and I discover that this is a limited release. Mission to Marzipan is ALL over the Chicago area but there is not yet a release date in Georgia and there might not be one.
I was disappointed but I knew there were options. I started investigating the methods and cost with which I might send ice cream from Chicago to Atlanta.
Then...Mom got sick. Really sick. She went into the hospital. My resolve was even stronger that she would have this delectable treat to celebrate her birthday and release from the hospital.
Then there was surgery.
There there was hope.
Then- less than 24 hours later there was the call...
How soon can you get down here?
It was only 4 days after her birthday.
There was a mad dash to get the house in order, make arrangements for my cats, get flights arranged and so much else.
In all of that madness there was a trip to the market.
I purchased a pint of Ben and Jerry's Mission to Marzipan for my Mother (and some Pistachio Pistachio for my Dad).
I knew she wouldn't really be able to eat it, but much like rubbing whiskey on the gums of a dying alcoholic, I wanted her to have that last sensation of something that she loved.
Early morning I was bundled off to the airport with the ice cream wrapped up in bags with frozen gel medi-packs. I made it to the airport and was on my way through security. They wanted to search my bag.
"You can't take this." Says the surly, mumbling youth with the TSA uniform.
I explain, I reason, I plead.
"Let the girl take her ice KREME." This is from the short, portly woman in the TSA uniform as she has a strange way of putting the emphasis on "cream" as well as saying it with a very hard K sound (hence the spelling and odd capitalization).
There is some banter. I am pleading on the verge of tears, Portly TSA is repeating her mantra of ice KREME, Mumbling Youth TSA won't give.
The pints of Ben and Jerry's are left at the O'hare airport along with a few Irish gypsy curses...
My mother passed away on April 10th- without ever getting to try the Ben and Jerry's Mission to Marzipan.
On April 12th I was at the Walmart not far from my parents house. I was picking up some cleaning supplies and perusing the food aisle to look for a comfort snack. An awkward, acne-ridden 60-some-odd- year old stock boy was stocking new product in the frozen treats section.
And there it was....
A case of Ben and Jerry's pints of assorted variety.
In the variety- Mission to Marzipan.
I asked how long they had carried it. He told me it had just come in the day before.
I picked up a pint of it.
I walked about 3 steps before I sat...slumped against the large display freezer doors...staring at the Mission in my hands and crying.
It was 2 days too late...
Just 2 days.
So much comes just a little too late...
The doctors finding the cancer...
The insurance company agreeing to send her to an oncologist who gave two shits about her care...
My mother and I reaching a point where we could respect each other despite the fact that we had always understood each other...
The Marzipan ice cream release in Georgia...
Happy Birthday Mom.
I love you.
I miss you.
You gotta get the hook up with the Mission to Marzipan Ice Cream. It is amazingly good. Hit up some Coffee Heath Bar Crunch while you are at it. That's right up your alley too.
Take a moment
Get yourself a little treat.
Look to the people you love and tell them so.
Take the time for these things while you can.
These chances pass.
Take them before it is too late.
Even if it is only 2 days too late.
Dad asked me what I wanted for my birthday...
So, my biggest wish is that I will feel better fast, do more great shows and have some amazing auditions in the interim so I am move right into the next project.
Since those things are really up to me here is a bit more of my birthday wish list which others can help me with since I don't have the means to do them for myself...
I have an Amazon list. It makes things easy. And don't forget that lots of the things you see there you can probably find cheaper on ebay or half.com.
A more specific list...some from the amazon list but I really really want them so I am pointing them out. Some of them aren't on amazon. I call it The Easy Dozen
1) Dead Sno It is funny. It is gorey. It is Nazi Zombies.
2) Pontypool It is creepy. It is gorey. It is the power of language.
3) Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters and Android Karenina- They are from the same brilliant and twisted mind that brought you Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Do I need more of a reason?
4) I want to go Skydiving. In Chicago...in Atlanta maybe. I just want to go. It would be such a thrill and it would certainly count as something for my "Grand Adventure" goals.
5) Tickets to see EvelynEvelyn/ Amanda Palmer/ Jason Webley in Chicago. Sure, the event is long after my birthday but tickets are on sale now. In that same light I would really like Deluxe Double Vinyl EvelynEvelyn set. Since I am one of the few people on the face of the earth who actually still has a working turn table it just makes sense.
6) An appointment for massage or acupuncture. This place is educational so they have rather inexpensive options.
7) Gift cards. Target, PetCo, Fandango/ Kersotes theater- there are tons of options. Target and Petco are more practical but I rarely get to go to the movies (and there are several out now I want to see) so that would be a wonderful little treat.
8) Tires for my car. What can I say, I need them. I can't afford them. They would mean safety for me and for others....
9) Headshot prints. I still really need to get back to the ATL to get together with moonbird and/ or smithrunt to get some color headshots taken. But, in the meantime I really really could use copies of my black and white ones.
10) Bath Bombs. One of the indulgences I like so much is quality time in a long hot bath. Lush Bath bombs make them so much more relaxing and delightful.
11) A telescopic shower head. I had one of these before and it was amazing. It is so much better than a normal fixed shower head. I just...yeah. It is a good thing.
12) These boots. Or one that look pretty much just like them. (black, lace up, low/ no heel, rounded toe...) Size 7. :-) It's spring. That means baggy dresses and boots. Or tank top, cargo pants and boots. These are the perfect boots. (Speaking of that, thefairygothmom, did you ever unsurface the post-surgery dresses you were working on for me when moved? If they are around I would still love them. :-) )
So, there it is...
Now, my sickie self is back to bed.
Don't reality TV celebs piss you off? The idea of over night success, unworthy of the limelight. What about 15 year olds dancing in lingerie, singing about their intense love on a 100 foot yacht. Yet, you're the first person in the check-out line to find out, "Who's caught with not so sexy Cellulite". Last time I checked, this revolution in the media has been a love-hate relationship for over 2 decades now.
TMI: A Hollywood Love Story, is exactly how you should break up with CelebTV.
It's ok to admit that it's over.
Showing every Saturday night in April 11:30 pm @ Gorilla Tango Theater! That's ONLY 4 SHOWS folks!! You don't want to miss out. Seating is limited so reservations are highly recommended.
Tickets are $12, for more information please call the box office at 773-598-4549 or book online:
Kalina "Kitten" McCreery
And of course the glory and shame of Celebutants Everywhere. :-)
Written and Directed by Madilynn Beck
Asst. Director: Kate Olsen
Make-up: Melissa Lynn
Photography: Alyse Liebovich
Produced by Gorilla Tango Theatre
Show Rating - R
And HEY!! Closing night the the weekend of my birthday. A sold out house would be the best gift EVER!!
So- POLL TIME!!!
I want to know your thoughts of the only competition that really matters. Forget the olympics, screw those professional sporting events.. LET'S TALK MOVIES!!!
I want to know your thoughts for the Oscars.
The 'top categories' are in the poll. But, if you have thoughts about the other categories I want to hear them too. Feel free to post in the comments. (I would have covered everything but I got tired of building the poll...sorry.)
Now, this poll is who you think WILL win. We all know that it isn't necessarily who you think SHOULD win. But, if you want to share you you think should win again- to the comments!!
Oh yeah, this will be one of my rare public posts so if you know other people who are movie buffs but aren't on my f-list send them this way. And if you aren't on LJ but want to share your thoughts I am going to open up the comments for 'anonymous' posting as well. But, please, put your name on it. Why not be proud of your predictions. :-)
(Since I know who sent it now I can tell you what it was *g*)
Yesterday I got a set of 6 different Rooibos teas. (I have tried 3 of them and they are all so very good.)
Today, a companion came for them in the form of a tea/ mug warmer.
I couldn't have asked for a more perfect gift.
This week has been a lot with the job, some doctor visits, a table read of a show, my Grandpop being in the hospital...
I am exhausted. Today in Chicago was damp, cold and grey. So, I spent the day curled up with the kitties, some TV/ movies and the perfect addition of my super yummy teas.
And I got to sip them leisurely since since I had the warmer to keep them toasty.
Thank you so very much moonbird. I love it all.
It seems that someone did a little Valentine's Day/ Chinese New Year shopping and sent me a gift of some savory beverage...
The company included the receipt but no name.
So- if you want to speak up- Please do.
If you don't- that's fine too.
In either case: THANK YOU!!
This week has been exhausting on many levels. This gift was a wonderful surprise and a delightful treat to help lull me gently into my weekend.
I can't wait to try all of them.
I don't really want to drudge all that up again. Much like the nightly news there is to much bad reported. I want to think about the good. So, the things I have had which brought more good and happy:
The highlights of The 20'Aughts-
1) Meeting Katinsky, Aileen, Carter, Evita and the rest of the Sensurround crew. These are the people I now consider my family and closest friends. So much of the other good for these years has been with/ for/ and because of them.
1a) Barker Project
1b) Geek Love (in ATL and Fringe Fest)
Sure, these things had their ups and downs but all in all they were experiences where I stretched and grew as an actress and worked with people who ( I trust and would share the boards with again and again. (And yes, this is even if I don't want to share anything other than The Boards with them.)
1c) Karaoke- Singing in public was my last great performance anxiety. If it weren't for the support, encouragement and friendly jabs I never could have done this. Now, I even feel ok with auditioning for shows with musical aspects.
2) Spring 4th. Thanks to Elvis, Rik, Chris and The Psytrance kids for this. I found a home there. I miss it a great deal. I really enjoyed my time at the door and in my "fishbowl" slinging the booze. It was a wonderful way to come out from under my rock, get my groove on a bit and also it gave a bit to my caretaker side in playing physical and emotional nursemaid to friends and strangers.
3) Livejournal. Yep, I actually started this in 2000. And yes, there has been various drama and stress. But it has also lead me to many wonderful people. And it is cheaper than therapy.
4) Nomenclature- Ok, this really started with my time on the doors at 688 and on the Stage at Club Fetish and The Chamber. But, working with Kook and Foster at Nomenclature let me take a more active role in the over all process and I loved it. It also let me meet people like Jolie, Calico, Emily and others who have been (and continue to be) important and cherished parts of my life.
5) Trips to NOLA with Foster. I can't even begin to talk about all the fun I had there. NOLA had previously been a tainted city thanks to ventures in poor relationships. But, going there with a friend to see other friends and work various events- that was more than wonderful.
6) Voltaire- The man, The market. I truly enjoy working for Voltaire. He is a wonderful person, a talented artist and I have met some wonderful people because of it. Again for this I have to put Jayme, Joanne, Beverly, Travis, Randy and Audrey into my list of favorite people. I never would have met any of them if it weren't for Voltaire and my life would be less without them.
7) Meeting The Oracle, Bones and Melissa. (It's almost funny that The Oracle is really my only friend in Chicago now.) I owe much to them (and Melissa) for taking care of my fur-kids when I sojourn back to the south. Extra special love for The Oracle and Melissa for stepping in on short notice to take care of them when Mom died. The Oracle has been there for me in many nights/ early morning of talking over breakfast or tea. And of course I couldn't have a better crowd here for silly dancing at 80's nights.
8) ARTC and MRAP. What fun!! And what wonderful people to work with. It brought me a new skill set as well as a diverse group of people who are all warm, talented, fun, creative and delightful. Almost from the moment I walked in to Chez WilbanksRich I felt wanted and accepted. I did several delightful shows with them. All in all, it represents work and people that I am proud to have in my life.
9) Romeo and Juliet. Yeah, it was a short run and I have done better shows. But playing Benvolio was great fun. I met "The Crush". I had a really fun time. And it was the kicker that got me out of the "sacrifice" of my marriage (where I gave up everything I wanted so I could help others with their goals) and back to doing stuff that was for me. And breaking my foot just made for a funny story of all of it.
10) Matt, Lynette, Karen, Monique and Mykie. United Airlines hasn't brought me much in the way of happiness or "good". But, it did bring these people into my life. I know for a fact I could not have made it through the last year without them. They have listened to me rant and rave. They have hugged me while I cried. They have indulged my work madness an even laughed at it from time to time.
So, there you have it. All the good from 00-09. It isn't much when I think of the list of bad. But, it is enough. It has kept me going. People, places and shows which have nourished my heart and spirit. And that is the most important part of life.
Moving forward? Well, I don't really have any resolutions for 2010. I decided the over all "better my person and life" are something I need to work harder on all of the time and there is no end result. It isn't a pass/fail. It is an ongoing effort. Well, I suppose there is a "fail" which comes if I stop trying.
I do, however, have some measured goals I would like to complete in 2010.
1) Read (at least) 25 new books. I know I should aim for more but I am hoping to be busy with other things.
2) Go on (at least) 12 auditions. Again, I know I should do more. But I am hoping to get cast in several shows so it will impair my ability to audition.
3) Perform in (at least) 4 shows and/or 6 film/ commercial shoots.
4) Watch 52 new movies (1 a week) . With Netflix, the ability to download stuff and theaters this one should be a cinch. Since this is part of what I want as a career I need to put in the hours to study the form more.
5) Watch 12 live shows. (1 a month) See above reasons. And it is better than wasting time in front of the T.V.
6) Travel more. As long as I am stuck working for United I need to take advantage of my flight benefits. I have a passport. I need to use it. I also have so many place in the US I need to see. There is definitely a trip needed to Buffalo to see Moo. Where else can I go? Anyone out there have a couch which would suit a traveling Kitten for a night or two? (Sadly, as long as I a working for United there is no way I can afford hotels or even hostels.) But I want to get out more and see more people.
7) Go to museums at least 12 times. Different museums. Different adventures. There are enough free/ discounted things here in Chicago that I just need to get out and to it. I also really want to go to the Tim Burton Exhibit at the MoMA and spend more time there. (The trip there with Joanne was shorter than I wanted since I was feeling so poorly.)
8) Go to at least 12 new restaurants. Ok, going out to eat once a month is a huge splurge. I'll have to work hard on the budget for this. But, I need to be more adventurous. I need to get out and explore more. And, I need to eat.
9) Take at least one class. More than likely this will be in some kind of theater training. But, it can be anything. If I can find a free class for something all the better. All the more need to expand and grow. If I can do more I will. I suspect it depends largely on money.
10) ??? I need a 10th goal. Something that is easily quantified. Preferably something that will be free. Suggestions?