August 30, 2014

It's like the clock is always racing, but my time is not for wasting

This has been a pretty productive week, I would say and has been keeping me busy. I've been working on some stories and trying to set up a couple interviews. School hasn't even started yet, and it feels like things are already starting to go full speed again. I tried to do my devotions a bit more, which was so good for my soul and I even went bike riding. It's time to get back in the game of life, you know what I mean? Breaks are nice, but then you've just gotta jump back with all you have. 
Monday was free and spent hanging out at home. I watched TV and was lazy. That was very nice!
Tuesday -- Some of the peeps from the newspaper went with our adviser to our local paper to see how they do some things. We talked with the editor-in-chief and sat in on one of their planning meetings, as they talked about what would go in the next day's paper. We were observing, hoping to get some ideas that might help us for this next school year. It was fun getting to see everyone and getting back into the swing of things for the paper. 
Mom and I came home to chill for the rest of the afternoon. I wasn't feeling so great and was feeling so lazy. I fell asleep for a few minutes, but then it was time to get ready for the big event that day. 
Then, I went to a free concert at one of my favorite places :)
Free Show at Buck Owens' Crystal Palace
You might not be familiar with the names Maddie and Tae right now, but I have a feeling that soon you will. With the release of their first country single just weeks ago, “Girl in a Country Song,” they’ve been turning heads all over and making people pay close attention. Like a lot of other people, they’ve gotten a little tired of the cliché country songs and the way women seem to be treated in them. At one of their writing sessions, they decided to write a list of those things mentioned in those predictable songs and that’s what they came up with.
Tuesday night, Aug. 27, the new girl duo played at Buck Owen’s Crystal Palace. It was one of the free KUZZ listener shows, presented by Barber Honda. Like many of the shows at the Palace, it was a packed house. The evening was fantastic. I always love being in the country music environment, as it makes me feel like I'm back in Nashville, Tenn. It also reminds me of my roots and that this is home. My mom and I shared a burger, though we had contemplated the chicken fried steak. We ran into a friend of ours from the Carrie Underwood fan club, so it was great chatting with her and listening to some great country music. 
KUZZ radio personality, Toni Marie, introduced the Maddie and Tae, then announced that their current music video has almost over 5 million hits on YouTube. I had chills at the thought of that. Before they even took the stage, I had goosebumps and knew I was about to witness something big. It was like the first time I saw Taylor Swift open for Brad Paisley. The Dot Records recording artists, Maddie and Tae walked out seconds later, excited to play for everyone.  They also mentioned that they’d been fed some yummy food a bit earlier. They joked that they’d needed an hour in between eating and playing, because they’d been shoving their faces with food.
But, I digress.
When a single gets a lot of praise right from the start, especially for something a little more tongue-in-cheek like, “Girl in a Country Song,” you wonder whether they’ll be more than a one-hit wonder. These girls proved all of those possible theories wrong.
The two reminded me of another certain young songstress, Taylor Swift, when she started out in country music. The duo has an undeniably charming stage presence and were extremely charismatic and down-to-earth; chatting with the crowd conversationally and taking selfies with those who had gathered around the stage. But, more than that, the crowd was completely enamored with the way they connected through music.
Along with their beautiful harmonies, Maddie and Tae tapped into the depth of their true songwriting skills. They sang about love, a beautiful bully who used to bother them in high school and the passing of a friend’s dad. They even did a cover of the Dixie Chicks’ “Cowboy Take Me Away.”
After their set, the girls said they’d be signing and would love to meet everyone. Maddie and Tae stood in the lobby greeting with fans as a line formed. They took their time taking pictures and really getting to know the fans who wanted to talk with them. Finally, it was my turn to meet them. I introduced myself and shook their hands, and they returned the favor. Maddie thanked me for being there, and I told her it was great to be there. Then, I explained to them that I’m a journalism major and I’m the Features Editor of my paper, and I would love to talk with them. I was wondering if we could set something up over the phone or through e-mail.
“Well, you’ll actually want to talk to that guy right there,” Tae told me, pointing to one of the guys on their team. He had been handing out autographed pictures.
As I was getting in between them for the photo, Tae was still talking to me. She was like, “That’s so cool that you’re going to school for that. How long have you been doing it?” It was a little awkward trying to talk with them, while taking the picture, but I was managing! I told her I had been doing it for about the last year, and they thought that was interesting. One of the guys on their team handed me a business card, so I could email him and get something going. I was so excited! They’re such sweet girls. Watching them chat with fans about their outfits and taking the time to take pictures and look people in the eye. That will go a long way, let me tell you.
Myself with Maddie and Tae :)
Myself with Maddie and Tae :)
I was so impressed with not only their music, but their personalities and can’t wait to see what they do next!
My mom and I had lunch with my aunt, then we visited my cousin in the hospital. We don't get to see her very often, so I was happy to get to spend time with her. Just sad that it had to be under these kind of circumstances. We came home and didn't do much for the rest of the afternoon. I tried to start getting some things together for a story I'm currently working on for our back to school issue…Ya know. Pretty uneventful rest of the day.
It was a pretty relaxed day…I went for a bike ride, which I can't remember the last time I did that by myself. It was incredibly hot out and my legs were seriously burning by the time I came home. But, I listened to Taylor Swift's "Shake It Off" on repeat the whole time and I was so ready to take on the world by the time I finished up. I also had a great dance session on my bike, while mentally tuning out the haters.
Later on last night, I also had a chat with the podcast "Swift Talk" about my experience, which was a blast! It's always great getting to talk about amazing things like this with fellow "Swifties." It was also really strange finally being able to talk about all of the details..I still haven't really talked about it with too many people, since most of my friends aren't big Taylor fans, so I've only posted my detailed blog about it. It's easier for me to say everything I need to when I write. When I talk, my words get a bit jumbled sometimes. HA! It was a good time, though.
The rest of the night was spent watching Netflix and hanging out. Taking advantage of that whole 'don't have anything to do right now' thing.

I love Fridays! Even while I'm on vacation, there's just something about them that gets me excited with possibilities. 
Well, for one thing…I've been watching this show religiously on Netflix over the last week or so. I had tried so many times to watch the show, but never could make it past the pilot. Last week, there was absolutely nothing on TV, so I told my mom we should start something new on Netflix. Well, we made it past the first and second episodes, and kept watching - It didn't take long, because I was instantly hooked. It reminds me a lot of One Tree Hill. I mean, it focuses on a sport, there's a deeper message, lots of relationship stuff, and good plots. It's not just purely for entertainment. Jason Katims is a genius. So, yeah…This is my latest obsession. Also, Tim Riggins. That is all that needs to be said. I also love Matt/Julie - Those two are seriously adorable together. But, I'll get to why this is such a big deal to me in a bit. Stay with me.

Today, I was able to sleep in a little. I just stayed in bed for awhile, because my room was dark and cozy, and it was early. Then I took my time getting ready. When we were ready, my mom and I ran some errands and were out a bit later today. By the time we got home we were pretty wiped out. That summer heat is exhausting.

The rest of the afternoon was pretty relaxed, which I didn't have a problem with. I also had a few things to take care of - packing, making a playlist...Things to get ready for this weekend. Then, later on, my mom and I met my dad at his work so he and I could go to one of the local high school football games. This is where Friday Night Lights comes into play. Because I've been so obsessed with the show, it has given me a new appreciation for the game. I told my dad that I wanted to go with him sometime to a football game, since he goes a lot, and this one came up, so it was perfect.

It was at our local college stadium, so it was all on a much larger scale than a typical high school game, but it was still a blast. I don't get to spend very much time with just my dad, so this outing was such a special treat for us. It gave us a chance to chat more and for me to get to watch him in his element, the way he's always there for me during my concerts/etc. I also love hearing his stories from his childhood. My uncle was working the game and my aunt was there too, so we were able to visit with them for a bit.

And, of course, I had to take some selfies. 

My dad said it was probably one of the longest high school football games he has ever been to, which kind of made me laugh that it was the one I decided to go to. But, I didn't mind. Our team won and if nothing else, it helped me to understand the "big deal" about football. I understand the passion of the sport and the dedication. Daily, these guys give their all to a sport the possibility of a dream that might not ever happen. But, they give it their all and hope for the best. Like anything else, it could all be gone in a second. They keep going anyway. 

The game didn't end until around midnight, but we went to In-N-Out after. My dad hadn't eaten basically all day, because of his grueling schedule at work, so he was more than ready to eat. I had eaten, but decided to have a burger, because YOLO. It was soooo worth every bite and calorie, too. 

It was a late night for all of us as we each had some things to take care of. I took a quick shower, finished packing up and making the playlist I had started earlier and finally climbed in bed. I finished reading "Fangirl," which was so good, turned on Parenthood and fell asleep. I'd say it was probably around 2:45 or 3 a.m. by the time I fell asleep. *sigh*

All in all, it was a very eventful week. So many exciting prospects on the horizon (interviews and other opportunities) that are also kind of freaking me out at the same time. Everything that I was wishing and hoping for this time last summer, is actually coming true. There's no more time for hiding behind insecurity...I've been jumping and seeing what I'm made of. So far, it's paying off and I'm having a great time, despite just feeling incredibly overwhelmed at times. 

But, I'm looking forward to "the last hurrah" of summer. Enjoying some time away before I go back to school.

That's all for now,

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