Sunday, January 31, 2010

Neverland Redux

The spring musical at B's school was announced right before Christmas break, and guess what? They're doing Peter Pan this spring! (M's school did the play, not the musical, so it's technically a different show.)

I haven't posted much recently, because this spring I'm co-musical director, and I've been busy trying to get the music in order. The rental company provided scripts for the kids, an e-mail version of the score (because they didn't mail the hard copy on time), and a hard copy of the score by mail. Naturally, none of them are the same, even before the director started making his own changes! In addition, both versions of the score have the orchestration reduced for one piano. Since we have in the "pit" both a piano and a keyboard (and three pairs of hands to play them), plus a percussionist, I've been re-orchestrating the reduced score for our forces by listening to the movie over and over.

The Mary Martin version of Peter Pan is extremely hard to come by on DVD. Even Netflix doesn't have one to rent out! Fortunately, someone has posted it on YouTube (in fifteen segments), so I've been able to listen to it there. I had started by buying the CD, but the vocals are so loud that I can barely hear the orchestration, and they also left off the non-vocal selections, like the overture.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Splish Splash

We're having a bit of weather here this week. Yesterday morning, I went into the garage to get something before leaving for work, and stepped in an enormous puddle of water. I started bailing with a sponge and a bucket (the mop fell apart last week, and I haven't bought a new head for it yet) while waiting for DH to finish his shower and investigate the cause. After four buckets of water, I decided this was a ridiculous way to do it. Instead, I grabbed a bunch of "dog towels" (cheap white towels from Costco that we use for everything dog-related), sopped up the water with them, then put them in the washer to spin dry. Repeat until floor is dry.

In the meantime, DH finished his shower and took a look outside. He didn't find the puddle by the door that he was expecting. He then looked up and saw the waterfall coming down from the gutter. We hadn't gotten around to cleaning the leaves out of the gutter yet this year, so he got to do it yesterday in the rain, while I mopped.

Today it's raining even harder. Strawberry Creek runs in front of our building at work, and it's normally a little trickle. Today we walked over the bridge and looked down to see a raging torrent! Muddy brown water, way over the banks, rushing downstream.

Just got an e-mail from our town saying that the power is out to both B's and M's schools. Not any of the other schools in town, just theirs. Since our house lies between the two schools, I'm assuming we don't have power, either.

Update (10:21 am): Middle school is officially closing for the day. No word from the elementary school yet. 

Update to the update (10:46 am): Middle school has power again, so they will stay open.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Singing vs. Sports

I just spent a nice weekend on San Diego. Saw my parents, had a lovely lunch with my former choir carpool, and sang in the PWC concert this afternoon.

Am I the only non-football fan in the US? There was some big game today involving the Chargers: the singers were checking the score at intermission, and I went through airport security surrounded by fans in green jerseys. (I don't even know which team is the green one!)

Monday, January 4, 2010

Non-Furlough Furlough

You've probably heard about the budget crisis in California, and the furloughing of state employees. I work at UC Berkeley, but since my position is funded by federal money, I'm not subject to the furlough program. However, I'm being forced to take three days off without pay this week, because the campus is officially closed and I used up all my vacation time over the last two weeks. I have no idea why they chose these dates--everyone who has kids has ended their vacations already, because school started today.

I have to say, though, that I'm getting a lot done at home. Our annual New Year's letter/card is almost finished, I've reorganized two cabinets in the kitchen (prompted by the arrival of DH's new china), and today I completely reorganized the Christmas decorations.

For the past decade or so, we've had three medium-size boxes of ornaments (DH's mother loves to give us ornaments to mark occasions), a large cardboard box (with stockings, lights, etc.), and small cardboard box (the box that the stocking hangers arrived in). The ornament boxes had already been sorted into 1, 2, and 3, with selected ornaments from boxes 1 & 2 being used each year. I moved things around so that next year, we'll only have to open ornament box #1. The large box had a torn handle this year, so I moved the contents of both boxes into plastic bins (that match the zillion other plastic bins in our garage), one with outside stuff and one with inside stuff. The only thing that didn't make it into a bin is the Christmas tree stand. I also had the bright idea of putting each string of lights into its own Ziploc bag, which should reduce the tangles for next year.

Two more days to go. I supposed I should tackle the unpacking of my suitcase next. (I did the Christmas decorations today because tomorrow is tree pickup day; otherwise, I probably would have unpacked first.)

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Christmas 2009

We're on the way home from our annual holiday pilgrimage to San Diego. In addition to seeing family and eating too much, we did some fun stuff.

The days before Christmas were spent shopping and wrapping gifts. I had done the big shopping ahead of time, but still needed stocking stuffers. I discovered that it's very difficult to find rolls of Lifesavers--I finally ended up with Lifesavers candy canes.

On the 26th, we drove up to The Red Bee to shop for craft supplies and say "hi" to the owners.

The next day, DH's parents rented a motel suite in Big Bear Lake, so we drove up with the whole gang and went sledding. (Pictures soon--I don't have any on this iPhone.) We started at the $25 per person tubing hill, complete with conveyer belt to get back up the hill, but after lunch it became too crowded. The following day, we found a great hill. We only had to buy two $5 Forest Service parking permits, so that was a much better deal! The kids sledded until they were exhausted, then we headed back to San Diego. DH's accident-prone sister somehow managed to sled into a rock and give herself a mild concussion, but she's doing fine now.

On the 29th, M turned 13, so we are now the parents of a teenager. We celebrated by going to the San Diego Zoo with my parents, followed by dinner at Jasmine and homemade cake.

I also squeezed in a shopping trip to Fashion Valley, two PWC rehearsals, and dinner at Fidel's Little Mexico.

We should be home in a little over an hour. No matter how much fun it is to go away, it's always nice to sleep on my own bed.

Sunset at my parents' house