Saturday, April 25, 2015

The Creative Habit

Becoming a creative person is not something that just happens.
As far as I know, nobody came out of the womb with a paint brush, pointe shoe, musical instrument or reciting Shakespeare.
Creativity is a discipline. A process of learning how to take your passion and develop it into a craft that inspires emotion.
Creative people are focused, dedicated, hard working, overachievers who strive for new ideas and pushing boundaries.
The most effective way I’ve found to support my creative endeavors, is by staying focused on the habit of creating work.
It might not always be brilliant, but it will always lead to a more productive journey.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Work Work Work

What’s that saying, “many hands make less work?”
Wrong!
Regardless of how many people I have “working” on my behalf, I still feel like the only one getting anything accomplished.
I’m not complaining or bragging...
I’m begging for help!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Death & Taxes

I'd rather die;
Than see how much I owe in taxes.
Not really, but wow—what do we get for our taxes, seriously?!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Travel Day

When you take a Super Shuttle to save $5;
And the shuttle is twenty minutes late and has ten stops to make—that is rage!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Monday, April 20, 2015

Book Signing: Come One, Come Ten...

I’m getting my message out there one book signing at a time!
Now, if I could only figure out a plan of attack to get more than twenty people at a time to show up.
In fact, I was hoping to have about one hundred people per event.
Is that too much to ask?
According to my manager, agent, publisher, publicist and the Barnes & Noble rep... Yes.
You’d think that if they were receiving a FREE dance class, workshop and evaluation dancers would be lined up in scores;
Apparently people don’t read anymore!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

The Devil is Everywhere

Fighting to stay positive,
In a world full of negativity and insecurities.
Most will tell you why you won't succeed;
Few will encourage you to stay the course.
Find those people who energize you,
And shine your light bright—that's where God thrives!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Besties

When I was younger, I had a large circle of friends. 
As I got older, the circle grew smaller and I learned to distinguish between a friend and an acquaintance.
I have very few people who I consider true friends; who provide inspiration, unconditional love, support and endless side-splitting-snot-out-your-nose laughter.
I'm in Pittsburgh visiting my bestie, and in natural form I've almost peed my pants twice and received a dose of seriousness.
I love watching my friends evolve. I'm moved by the journey we've navigated, from our wild days in New York City, career highs and lows, marriage and dealing with adulthood.
I feel blessed to have friends whom I value as family (without the drama.)

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Book Tour: Travel Day

My favorite thing about traveling is the TSA line.
Okay, not at all—but I'm trying to stay positive on my book tour;
And I am positive that the security line is always a joke.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Monday, April 13, 2015

Life On Tour

Travel days are rough.  I'm up too early, and I stay up too late.
Life on the road seems fun;
Until you're stuck there.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

A Visit From Gram

I savored her embrace, gentle but firm;
I could smell her perfume and hear her laugh.
I even got to dance with her again.
It felt so real––I didn’t realize it was a dream until I woke up.
But at least I got to say goodbye.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Local Commercials: A Perk of Traveling

Watching local TV commercials is similar to attending a high school production of “Grease”: forced comedy, awkward chemistry between the cast and that girl who thinks they’re going to be discovered as the next Jennifer Lawrence.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Travel Day

Flying isn't the worst part;
It's the TSA line.
I wish I could wrinkle my nose Bewitched style and arrive at my desired destination.
Then again, if I was a witch I probably wouldn't be traveling for work, would I?

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Fake It...

That terrible moment when you wake up to discover the ridiculously over-the-top incident that took place yesterday was NOT a dream.
Moving forward, walking on eggshells;
NO, that is not who I am.
So now, I have to “be” the asshole who pretends everything is normal.
Is this only Hollywood? Or does this shit happen in Nebraska, too?

Monday, April 6, 2015

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Jesus Christ Superstar

It was standing room only during mass today;
Who says God is not a Rockstar?
Obviously Christmas has become such a commercially celebrated holiday––for Christians and non-Christians alike;
Now if only we could remind practicing Christians that Easter is by far a more important day.
Lets compare:
Christmas, the birth of Jesus. Okay, well people are born EVERY day.
Easter, the resurrection of Jesus.  Yeah, you don’t see that every day do you?

Saturday, April 4, 2015

The Puppy Waiting Game

The line at Starbucks is usually long;
My puppies sit in a chair waiting patiently.
Onlookers remark on how well trained they are—really they just know the cookies are in my pocket, but the only way the get them is if the save our table.
They're adorable.
I love my dogs like children.
I'm not crazy, I realize they're not human;
They're far too kind to be that!

Friday, April 3, 2015

Dr. Orders: Take Two Days Off and Call Me in The Morning

Sometimes I feel guilty for wanting to take a break from work,
Then I remember all of those wise (by wise I mean people in their sixties) leaders on TV share wisdom to their younger self:
“I would have told myself that it’s all going to be okay.” or “You don’t have to try so hard.” or “You’re going to need triple-bypass surgery on your heart if I don’t stop stressing out so much.”
I’m giving myself the weekend off.
Starting now!

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Nonstop

I don’t know what’s worse:
Organizing my taxes, or cleaning our house?!
Thankfully, I finished both.
Now, can I please have a day off?!
#INeedToTakeABreak

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

NYC Smile

A frown goes a long way;
A smile goes even further.
Negative energy spreads on the streets of New York;
But one smile lights up Times Square!

Monday, March 30, 2015

Note To Self:

Never visit NYC during Spring break.
A.) It might be Spring, but it’s still F_cking FREEEEZING;
B.) The streets are covered with annoying teenagers who act out scenes in their favorite NY movies––and yes, I realize I did that when I was their age, too.
But I don’t care. It’s a lot to deal with.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

A NYC Day

Rehearsal.
Starbucks.
Conference call.
Choreography.
Radio Interview.
Dinner with friends.
All in a day in NYC!
#BookLaunch

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

890 Broadway

Just over ten years have passed.
I walk into the studio, my friend and her company dancers are rehearsing an emotionally charged, athletic dance;
It's as if time stood still.
The only noticeable difference is the beautiful evolution of creativity and confidence.
I love my friend.
#LifeOfAnArtist

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Escape Negativity and Shine

I have two options:
Fear or Faith.
People can only disappoint you, when you give them the power to.
I need to ask for what I want (which I’m fairly good at) and then move on whether they help me or not (which I’m fairly bad at).
Life is too short to live in negativity.
So I must do whatever it takes to crawl out of the darkness and into the light.
Sometimes it’s hard to find the light switch, but it’s always worth it once you shine.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Note To Self:

People are mean.
There's nothing you can do about it.
Smile and let go.
Or be mean back, with a smile. 

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Another Hotel...

Another almost comfortable (but still not your own) bed.
Watching television shows you would never watch at home.
It’s like you’re having an affair on your regularly scheduled programming.
#LifeOnTour

Friday, March 20, 2015

Thursday, March 19, 2015

The End of the Day and Nothing to Say

I spent too much time doing things that weren’t creative;
I forgot to share my words.
Not a great day.
Writing is key!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

You Can('t) Do It All...

Remember that time I said, “there is plenty of time every day to do what you need to do...”
I stand corrected.
No matter how early I wake up, or how late I stay awake working––I can’t get it all done!
Who knew launching a book took so much time and energy?
Even with a publisher, agent, manager, two publicists and a group of very supportive friends, I still feel like overwhelmed.
#OCDpleaseWorkForMe!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Realization

I could never be an event planner.
Over the past three weeks I’ve been arranging the details of my official book launch (Sunday March 29th at Broadway Dance Center in NYC from 6-9PM) and I’m exhausted from the rejection.
As a performer who has been in the industry for over twenty years, I’m used to hearing “no”.
Generally, I can handle that because the odds are stacked against you in the first place.
However, when you invest time, energy, emotion and exploit every contact you know––and you still only have five confirmations?
Those are circumstances I’m not cool with.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Up And At It!

Once I'm awake, I can't go back to sleep;
Not even after a 14 hour day in the theater and a 4AM wake-up call!
So, now I'm getting my work done on an airplane on a Sunday.
#24/7

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Life On Tour

Waking up in a new hotel room every weekend is what I imagine it’s like in the Twilight Zone––everything from the cheap, over-bleached sheets, to the poor water flow in the showers is vaguely familiar, but the furniture is arrange just different enough that you’ll stub your toe EVERY time you wake up in the middle of the night to go pee!

Friday, March 13, 2015

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Counting Sheep

If I go to bed now, I can still get five hours of sleep.
But if I stay up working, I can cut my work-time in half tomorrow and take the afternoon off.
(Yeah right, I know I'll just find something else to do.)
It's time to stop typing words, and start counting sheep.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Day Off with Roseanne

Laying in bed watching reruns of Roseanne,
Really puts things into perspective:
The late 80's were hilarious.
Roseanne pushed boundaries,
My life is startlingly similar to a housewives,
I love taking the day off––even though I've got my laptop and I'm still answering emails, posting blogs and making things happen!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Friday, March 6, 2015

Barnes & Noble: Shelved

I will elaborate on this moment when I can fully wrap my mind and heart around the feeling well enough to articulate a worthwhile essay;
In the meantime I will say that walking into a Barnes & Noble and seeing my book on a shelf next to Bob Fosse was overwhelming and incredibly exciting.
I spent the majority of my twenties in a Barnes & Noble, first in Chicago, then New York––reading, exploring, dreaming, scheming and growing as a person and artist.
This is a full-circle, HUGE event in my life.
I will never forget it!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Balancing: Good vs. Bad

Good: I took yoga.
Bad:  I ate a hamburger after.


Good: I accomplished all of my goals on the check list.
Bad: I started a new check list.

Good:  I stayed positive despite receiving unpleasant news.
Bad:  I didn't stay on-top of the situation in the first place.

Good:  I'm almost done with this blog post.
Bad:  I still don't feel good.

#BalanceIsHard

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Monday, March 2, 2015

Flying Stand-By

Is like saying yes to the 1st guy who asks you to prom, and then secretly puts "feelers" out for the dream date. i.e. The Captain of the Football Team!

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Friday, February 27, 2015

Another Airport

The shuttle is late,
The people are rude—cramming themselves to the front of the line,
And the TSA is out of control.
Just another day on the job!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Open Note To Haters

Allowing someone else's doubt to dictate my life isn't going to work for me.
I can't be concerned with your thoughts––I have plenty of my own thank you.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

To Do Lists:

Crossing things off my "To Do" list always feels good;
Realizing once that happens, I have ten more things to do, doesn't.
It's like a vending machine––sure you buy the bag of chips, but the second the bag drops, another one is right there waiting.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Accomplished

It's early, and I didn't get an ounce of sleep last night.
I sit typing on my computer as a way of waking my brain and inspiring creativity.
It's not always intelligent or inspirational––but when I set goals, I get things accomplished.  No matter how insignificant they may seem.
Focused, steady, determined and balanced.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

You CAN Do Everything!

When you're short on time,
You have to shine brighter!
Making the most of every situation––balanced and confident.
I always strive for excellence, even when I only have three minutes to achieve it.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Caution: Habits Are Forming

The year starts off with a bang;
Intentions are set and goals are met daily.

You find your pace,
A new routine is choreographed.

The dance becomes comfortable;
You start to relax into the groove.

Mid-way into the second song,
You realize you're behind the count.
It's too soon to lose the rhythm.

Be careful of the corners you cut while dancing;
Habits are forming.

Monday, February 16, 2015

5, 6, 7, 8 Write!

Give a dancer a count off and they take action.
Regardless of what it is, a dancer is ready and willing to attempt the challenge.
I'm sitting at my computer, staring at a blank page––working on my next book.
The problem isn't a lack of stories or where to begin; it's finding the time to do everything.
I pride myself on being exceptional at making lists and getting things done, but right now I feel overwhelmed with lists.
The walls in my office look like that cliché scene from any TV show or movie with the crazy serial-whatever who is tracking down alien-govenment conspiracy-missing children.
I always thought writer's block derived from a lack of creativity or inspiration, but now I'm pretty sure mine developed because it's so hard to block out any time for writing!
Which explains why I have so many notes on the wall (and my iPhone app) that say: write about "_____" when you have time.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

When You're Annoyed...

You have two options:
Do something about it.
Or
Sit and complain.
Right now I'm enjoying what I call the "stewing" process––where I let the issue build up until I have to "do something about it."

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Waking Up

Waking up without coffee is like shaving without cream;
If you don't want to be irritated or cut, I wouldn't recommend it!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Travel Day

When traveling to a cold climate from a beautiful balmy location;
Bring a warm coat, a beanie and a positive attitude:
I'm positive I'd rather be at the beach.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

The Beauty of Aging

When people would piss me off in my twenties;
I reacted instantly with a sharp tongue that was more emotionally damaging than a brutal attack in a lions cage at a zoo.
When people piss me off in my thirties;
I take a deep breath, and decide if I want to invest the emotionally energy in giving a shit about their sad pathetic insecurities.  Then I calmly respond with one short sentence:
I'm sorry you feel that way, I disagree with your stance so let's call it a tie.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

I'm Up!

Waking up is either the easiest or hardest part of my day.
It's one of the only "black or whites" in my life;
I don't know how I can wake up at 6AM on a Monday and feel like I'm on top of the world––and by Wednesday I want to commit a felony crime against my alarm clock!
But here I sit at my computer screen, trying to be creative...
My fingers are typing through the motions, and my brain is like, "does any of this even make sense?"  Meanwhile, I really don't care.
I'm just thrilled that I didn't stay in bed like the lazy, lump I want to be;
I got up and I'm ready to be me!

Monday, February 9, 2015

My Grammy Rant

Madonna is no longer an innovator––she is a cliché.
#NotHelpingWomen #PerpetuatingTheSterotypeSheCreated

Sunday, February 8, 2015

YoGaOT To Compare...

The sweat gushes into my eyes as I make my way from warrior three back to one leg-mountain pose.  My standing leg is on fire and my foot feels like I spent three weeks hiking through the wilderness in a pair of boots that were a size too small.  The room is 90 degrees and we're only half way through the practice.
It feels like torture, and I love it!
Just when it feels like my leg is going to melt, the yogi encourages us to continue to breath through it––or not.
Wait, what?
She continues, "...Yoga is not about accomplishing a pose.  Yoga is you. There is no right or wrong. Don't compare yourself to anyone else in the room.  Accept where you're at and if you can't breath through it, drop down to child's pose and let it go."
Really?!
That's my problem with society now, we're afraid to compete with one another. If something feels uncomfortable we give up.  We've become so brainwashed to believe that it's okay to accept mediocracy.
I get it, yoga is a zen thing...
I practice to better myself.  To become more evolved: mentally, spiritually, emotionally and physically.  Remind me how that's supposed to happen without pushing myself?  Which by the way, involves having a point of contact to compare my success.
I'm just saying...
Namaste!

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Life Lesson No. "Who's Keeping Track?!"

I will continue to set goals that are inline with my dreams;
Leaving room for the surprises that shape my life.
Every twist and turn on my journey creates growth, opportunity and adventure.
There is nothing I cannot overcome with Faith, hard work, creativity, laughter and fearlessness.
Life is too short to live any other way.

Friday, February 6, 2015

After Yoga––Low Energy

At some point, I'm going to have to shower off the yoga and dress for success.
It's Friday and I've got a world to conquer!
As soon as I check Facebook one more time...

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Addicted To The Internet

Hi, my name is Matthew.
I'm on my computer more than I'm in my bed.
I don't feel good about that––but I'm afraid to change.
What happens if I don't post a status update every two hours,
Or share my latest Instagram pic,
Even worse, what if I miss an important email with a job offer that I only have ten minutes to respond to?
The fear is real, the addiction is true.
I think it's time to unplug for a few days!

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Sunday, February 1, 2015

America's Favorite Holiday...

Is not Christmas, Easter or even Independence Day––it's The Super Bowl.
I wouldn't be surprised if more people prayed today than on any other day.
I"m joking.  But not really.

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Dark Chocolate

Rich, bold and heart-healthy.
The decadent sweet treat melts in my mouth.
This is not helping my lose weight!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

No Seriously, It's Time To Do Something!

Worrying about the future is pointless;
Worrying about the extra five pounds of blubber I'm carrying around my waist on the other hand is something that needs addressed ASAP!
Seriously in need of FOOD detox.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Waking Up Before The Birds

The sun isn't up,
The sky is dark,
No traffic on the road,
And the rooster hasn't crowed;
It's just me with my thoughts and dreams.
They are still safe and I'm full of hope,
The harsh realities of life will kick in soon enough––but for now, I'm going to soak up my Faith.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The War on Customer Service

I have never negotiated with a terrorist; after dealing with AT&T I imagine I'm ready for almost any hostile situation.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Wake Up Call

NO, seriously––your pants are so tight you can't even button them!
Enough is enough.  The tree is down, the holidays are over;
Time to reduce the waist line.
For real.  Say "no" to In & Out Burger...
It's time to get healthy again!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

It's All About The Money... Not really, but today it is.

Getting out of debt is fun!
Is what I have to tell myself every morning I have to wake up at 5AM to go to work.
Staying out of debt is even more fun!
Is what I need to remind myself every time I plan a trip to Hawaii.
Thankfully, I get to work in a profession I love––if only I didn't have to be up at the butt-crack of dawn.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Random Thought

Watching my puppies lounge around the house surrounded with bones, toys and cozy beds really gets me thinking...
God, it's good to be a dog.
Unless you're one of those dogs at a kill shelter; then it would really suck.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

So UnZen!

My Zen was lost when the girl next to me rolled out her filthy yoga mat; honestly, it smelled like dirty feet and blue cheese!
Every downward dog was like fighting back an upward projectile vomit!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

This Can't Weight

Seriously,
The Holidays are over but I'm still caring around a Christmas package;
Six pounds of goodies around my belly, back and face to be exact!
I noticed our neighbors still have their Christmas tree up, it's January 21st––seriously take down the tree, and take off the weight!
Okay, I'm glad I had this pep talk with myself.
Carry on.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Sunday, January 18, 2015

The Golden Girls

It doesn't matter where I'm at or what time of day––if The Golden Girls are on TV, I have to watch.
My favorite viewing place is a hotel room (similar to the room I'm in now) because I never feel guilty spending hours laying in bed laughing with my friends.
The Golden Girls to the gays is like anything on ESPN to guys.
I've seen every episode at least three times, but just like a conversation with my gram, I find new wisdom and humor each time.
Thank you Hallmark for being a friend.
Whether you like it or not, you're making gay men everywhere smile.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

#OscarsSoWhite

Is trending on Twitter right now.
I'm confused––are we supposed to honor and salute people based on their race, religion or sexual orientation versus their talent, ability or performance?
I understand that people get frustrated at the lack of diversity.  It's an undeniable reality of the world we live in, even still in the 21st century.
There is important, quality work being produced everywhere which celebrates every walk of life––perhaps if we focus our attention on that creative energy and "tweet" or get loud from a positive point of view, more people will listen and take note.
I just don't understand perpetuating negative.  It's been a long time since I had a math class, but two negatives do not equal a positive, right?

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Life of An Actor

Wake up early to get my journaling, creative writing, meditation and a workout in.
Off to the "day job" (which I must admit, I'm so grateful it's not in the retail or food industry).  #Choreographer
Then back on set! Which is my favorite place in the world to be, even if it means sitting in dirt until they call action.
#LifeOfAnActor

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Priceless

Seeing your name on a callsheet next to an A-List actress fresh off an awards show high...
Priceless!
I love my job.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Inspiration or Not...

Some days the inspiration flows like beer at the Super Bowl;
Other times, it's as tough as a steak at Sizzler to dream up a topic.
The point of a daily creative writing, is to maintain the focus and habit.
So here I sit at my computer without a clue as to what I'm talking about.
Rambling senselessly like many of the winners of last nights Golden Globe awards.
Perhaps that is why I'm without a spark––aside from Tina and Amy's perfectly timed dazzling display of wit, snark and intelligence.  The show was boring and uninspired.
Proving that everybody has "off days"  even in Hollywood.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

The Golden Globes

It's the official kickoff of the Gay season!
Hollywood's hottest A-list stars walk the red carpet;
Diamonds, sequins and stilettos––and that's just for Ryan Seacrest.
The rest of the divas are all in their hotel rooms surrounded by stylists.
Who will win?
Who will lose?
Who will get too drunk and act like a total ass?
I can't wait to find out.
Let the fashion, speeches and closeted men pretending to be straight begin!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Rainy Days

Dark grey skies,
Wet soggy feet;
Movies on Netflix while cuddling with the puppies.
Sometimes the rain in LA doesn't bother me––but the sun better come out tomorrow!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Let It Go

Not the song,
The bitch who almost ran over my foot and nearly killed my dog this morning.
And then blamed me for walking my dogs.
You can hit-and-run, but I. Will. Find. You.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Ready SET Go!

Craft service for breakfast;
Wardrobe, check!
Off to hair and makeup—
I love working on a set! 
#TheGlamorousLife 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Top Secret!

Today is the first day of rehearsal for a Top Secret project I booked!
I'm so thrilled––only seven days into the new year and I scored a huge gig.
Another reminder that life (and God) will lead you down an unseen path, just when you thought the journey had ended.
Today I am grateful!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Random Thought: Headaches

When a headache lingers for more than two days,
It becomes a heartache.
I need something stronger than Advil migraine!

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Time With My Niece

All it takes is a day in the snow with a four year old to remember what life is all about.
My niece is full of personality, and clever, too.
(Which is a lethal combination!)
Even as an actor, I forget the power of imagination––never fear, a four year old will reignite the sense of play faster than Olaf will melt in Nevada!
My niece also has the power to charm me into a galloping horse; and no matter how many times I say, "this is the last time, okay?"  She looks up at me with her gorgeous blue eyes and electric smile and says (in the most adorable voice possible), "just one more time?"
Naturally, I concede despite the fact that my back feels like it's going to break in half, and my knees feel like a racing horse after ten years at the Kentucky Derby!
I just remind myself how lucky I am that she remembers me and wants to spend time with me––regardless of the fact that I live a thousand miles away, and see her only every few months in person, and weekly on FaceTime. (Thank god for #Apple iPhone!)

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Coffee Talk

One of my favorite activities while visiting my family over the holidays is to go out for coffee with my mom or dad.
Bonding over a warm caffeinated beverage in the Colorado cold is the ideal way to share our lives.
Exchanging victories, laughing about old memories and comforting one another on losses and setbacks.
My mom and dad have always been my heroes.
Their support, leadership, knowledge and love have guided me from childhood to adulthood; and I continue to learn and laugh with them every opportunity I get.
My dad and I spent our mornings sharing stories on the way to school.
My mom and I have been addicted to Starbucks and social hour just as long...
For me, it's the simple joy of sitting down with either of them and getting to know them; not as mom or dad––but as people with vibrant backstories.
Sure, we could bond just as easily at home, but there's something about a cup of "joe" that makes the moment that much stronger!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Fresh New Year

I always love a blank page––so full of possibilities.
I regard every new year as a fresh start.  A new chapter in my book, just waiting for adventure and self-discovery.
Some years there is character development, and sometimes there's nothing but vanity and wild exploration.
Regardless, my journey continues to spark a wiser, more understanding and well-rounded hero.
I have no clue what 2015 holds in store for me, but if it's anything like the past thirty-six years, I will be utterly satisfied and overwhelmed with Faith, love, happiness and success.
I'm ready to say goodbye to ideas that no longer serve me––making space for wonderful new adventures!
#HappyNewYear

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Saying Goodbye to 2014

Sitting in a gorgeous cabin in the snow covered hills,
I realize how blessed I am.
For no other reason than the simple fact that I have friends and family who share their blessings with me.
2014 has been a year of growth.
It wasn't always easy, nor was it a year full of major victories.
At times I felt like I was in a holding pattern–– every hurdle was twice as high and road blocks kept me changing the course.
I punished myself for things that were out of my control.  
I was angry that I couldn't do more. (A common theme in my life, and a curse that I'm hoping to "resolve" in the New Year.)
I accomplished obstacles that had once been forgotten goals:
going back to school, getting back into acting classes, finding a way (and the time) to stay in yoga.
As with every year, I laughed.  Not nearly enough this year, but that will also be a challenge for 2015.
Loss, sadness and guilt were a major part of 2014.  More than any other year in my life that I can remember.
It's time to let it go.  Saying goodbye is extremely difficult and painful.
However, I've tortured myself enough, and in order to grow––I must forgive myself.
Life is too short, and I have a brightness in me that deserves the opportunity to shine. (We all do.)
So here's a salute to a year of learning, and to the year ahead, may it bring the evolution and opportunity I'm ready for!

Monday, December 29, 2014

Snow Day!

Sledding, skiing and maybe even a snowman?
Anything's possible on vacation in Beaver Creek-
With two feet of fresh snow and only 10 degrees,
Even with my long underwear, it's going to be freezing cold.
As fun as spending a day frolicking in the bone chilling cold sounds...
I'm really looking forward to the "adult" hot chocolate that I'll be enjoying afterwards!
P.S. When is Starbucks going to get hip to #alcohol?

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Vacation Equals Excuse

Have you ever noticed that vacation is like a get-out-of-jail-free pass for everything?
I shouldn't buy that watch.  ...but I'm on vacation.
I shouldn't jump off a cliff.  ...but I'm on vacation.
I shouldn't have another drink.  ...but I'm on vacation.
I shouldn't eat another cookie.  ...but I'm on vacation.
Seriously, I wonder how many people lie, cheat and steal while on vacation.
I'd be more creative with this blog entry. ...but I'm on vacation.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Overhead Space

That awkward moment when you quickly pop your perfectly sized soft-sided duffle bag into the only empty overhead bin left-
Leaving the business man with three roller bags where he belongs, checked at the gate!
#VictoryOverFirstClass

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Twas The Night Before Christmas...

And all through the house,
Christmas exploded everywhere... And. I. Love. It!
Not a corner is left without something red and green,
The stockings are hung on the fireplace with care, and I hope that tomorrow they'll be stuffed with more than just air.
I'm so grateful for my family and friends,
And to spend this evening in our home with loved ones, AND our puppies feels like...
#Christmas
Faith, Family, Friends, and Food.
Ho, Ho, Ho!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Spa Day

Shower,
Sauna,
Shower,
Steam room,
Hot tub,
Shower,
Massage,
Steam room,
Shower,
Hair cut,
Shower.
Repeat monthly!
#BecauseIReallyNeedIt

Monday, December 22, 2014

Note To Self:

The moment I allow fear to dictate my path, is the instant I've completely missed the point of life.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Filled With Rage

One exchange is all it takes.
Just like when we were kids.
Selfish, defensive, screaming-
Games;
I won't play them.
So now I have to accept that my relationship will no longer be a priority.
I'm devastated and I know I'll miss her,
But I can't handle the rage, or the fact that I'm always the one to concede, without an apology.
Life isn't always fair, this is a major loss.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Friday, December 19, 2014

Friday, Finally!

As an independent contractor, my work is never done.
Expanding my career opportunities involves a nonstop hustle,
That does not consist of punching a time-clock.
Instead, I'm punching keys on my laptop; day in and day out.
Regardless of the hour, I keep on working.
Thankfully, I make the rules- and today, I'm taking an early lunch!
AKA I'm leaving the office early, and may not come back until after the holiday!
...or at least that's the goal.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Bagel and Rain

Sitting in my dining room eating a bagel and watching the rain fall;
If I didn't know better, I'd think I was in New York...
It's not supposed to rain in LA!
In the midst of the "worst drought ever".
I guess we should consider this a gift from Santa,
Or God?
I wouldn't mind the rain so much, if it didn't totally reck my hair.
#VainButGrateful

Monday, December 15, 2014

Special Day

Today is a special day.
The birthday of both my grandma and niece;
Also mine and Jeff's twelfth anniversary.
I'm so grateful for my loved ones.
Their unconditional love and support is overwhelming,
Their spirit's are uplifting.
#Blessed

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Friday, December 12, 2014

It's A Living...

Alarm goes off at 4AM,
It's too early to think.
Bags are packed and clothes are preset.
Showered, dressed and on the road.
TSA is always nuts, and what? No Starbucks in the terminal?! 
How Un-American!
Middle seat, across the country.
Yep, it's official;
I'll do almost anything for work.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Bagel For Breakfast?!

Delicious and doughy,
It's like a savory donut.
Both are full of carbs, and neither one is healthy;
But totally satisfying, in an "I don't give a shit" kind of way!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Annoyed

That irritating feeling you just can't release,
Like a fly you can't catch.
Unlike the fly, my mood can't be killed.
So I sit. Taking deep breaths.
Hoping to release the attitude.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Life Lesson:

If you expect to be let down, you might occasionally be surprised;
If you hope to be surprised, you will always be let down.
#NoteToSelf

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Media Overload

Waking up to Facebook is more than a mild problem, it's an addiction.
Honestly, I'm not in my twenties and it is not 2007- so I think it's time to back away from the social media platform...
Plus, that will give me more time for Instagram, Twitter and Vine.
#SocialMediaMandatoryForSuccess

Friday, December 5, 2014

Throwing In The Towel

There are times you have to fight,
And then there are those circumstances where you realize, failure is unavoidable...
I am an incredibly willful person; I don't believe in giving up.
I also don't believe in clinging to an idea that has already imploded.
So I wipe the tears from my eyes, and throw down the towel.
#WalkAway

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

There's No Business...

Eating dark chocolate after an audition is like my own personal F_c# You! to the industry;
Going to yoga the next morning is like my apology for betraying my passion and profession.
#CycleOfAbuse

Monday, December 1, 2014

The Yoga Challenge:

Going back to yoga after a week of nonstop eating...
That's the challenge!
You can do it... is what I'm telling myself while looking at my gut in the mirror.
#Motivate

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Thanksgiving Detox

I forgot that it was possible to gain 10 pounds in 4 days;
I suppose that's what happens when you enjoy a Thanksgiving-four-day-feast-athon without even thinking about working out, or going to a gym.
In fact, the only exercise I got this past weekend was:
Opening wine bottles,
Lifting food and drink from table to mouth,
Racing through the mall on Black Friday for outrageous deals,
And a lot of laughter with friends...
Sadly, that was not enough to keep my waistline trim-
So today, it's time to reel it in!
#TheHolidaysAreHere

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Friday, November 28, 2014

Deck the Halls

Starbucks Gingerbread Latte-
Black Friday, yes, I scored.
Home Depot for the perfect tree,
Awful 80's Christmas Films playing in the background;
Trimming the tree with family heirlooms.
Our house is covered in Christmas cheer.
#NostalgicChristmasTheme

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Giving Thanks...

I'm always thankful for my family and friends-
But at this time of year the joy and gratitude overwhelm me.
No matter the distance, I continue to absorb the love from the family and friends who continue to support and inspire me.
Gathered around the television watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, while the smell of turkey and stuffing saturate the air-  just one of the childhood memories that I continue to enjoy today.
Loved ones pass and friends move on, but the spirit of Thanksgiving carries beyond.
#Blessed and #Grateful

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Monday, November 24, 2014

Live In The Moment

Is to appreciate the blessings I have in my life.
Without fear of the unknown,
Or regret for the un-changeable past.
Full of gratitude for the opportunities that exist today-
The laughter and conversation with friends,
The unexpected adventures that spring up everyday,
And the reminder that tomorrow is never promised-this moment is a gift worthy of being present.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Random Observation

The interesting thing about sleep is when you go without it long enough-
You really start to believe you don't need it.
#DownfallsOfTraveling

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Blogger Late Than Never...

That moment when you freak out because you didn't hit one of your daily targets-
Writing on your blog.
Stay creative by creating habits!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Self-Park

Who needs valet, when you can park for free?
And by 'free' I mean $25 a day.
#TheJoyOfTraveling

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Forced Group Activities...

#SUCK.
Seriously, I've hated assigned group activities since my first experience with them in Mrs. Oberwater's 3rd grade class.
There's always one person, generally an overachieving perfectionist who does all of the work (me), three or four people who just sit around with a blank stare, and one person who's only contribution is to complain about every decisions made, and take credit for the project in the end.
It's not that I don't believe in team work, I just prefer to associate myself with a team of people that I can count on!
#OverIt

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Movie Marathon

The escape from our day to day lives.
Lost in a giant screen full of beautiful characters.
Delicious popcorn;
Reclining velvet seats.
And all for only $32 a ticket!?
#MoviesAreALuxury
But getting caught up in the magic is worth every penny!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Spa Day Off

Peace of mind comes in many forms-
Today, mine comes in the form of a Swedish massage and spa retreat, followed by light shopping in LA and a movie!
#DayOff

Monday, November 17, 2014

Dear Bagel,

I realize that carbs are considered the Devil in Hollywood-
But I cannot resist your glossy hard outer shell and warm doughy insides.
Even without cream cheese, you rock my world.
Please do me a favor, stay away from my love-handles and booty, and I will continue to savor you every morning from now until the end of time.
Love,
Matthew
#AddictedToCarbs

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Puppy Love

My puppies think they're friends with everyone we pass.
They'd jump-on, lick or cuddle-up with a horror villain if I weren't there.
If only humans were so friendly!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Monday, November 10, 2014

Monday Madness!

Walked the dogs,
Posted my #SocialMedia,
Two conference calls,
Returned twenty emails,
Mailed the final proofs for my book, back to my publisher,
Ate breakfast,
Rehearsed an audition,
Choreographed for my next master class,
And finished my creative writing...
All before 10AM!
(You should see what my mid-day looks like!)
#Overachiever!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Airport Case Study

I never get tired of people watching.
Especially at an International airport-
Europeans are always well dressed and smell good.
Asians are always quite and efficient.
Americans are always poorly dressed, loud and eating something.
These are all generalizations, of course.
Still, I find it crazy that in every culture, young and old, EVERYONE is plugged into a power source... or desperately searching for an outlet!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

I'm Awake!

The alarm goes off-
SNOOZE!
The alarm goes off- 
SNOOZE! and silence phone!
The alarm goes off- 
VIBRATING on the hotel nightstand...
I'm awake!
But I'm 5 minutes late.
#LifeOnTour

Friday, November 7, 2014

Life On The Road

And it begins:
The stress.
The lines.
The people who still don't know how the TSA screening works.
The dreadful coffee.
The bags, not under the seat, under my eyes...
#TheGlamorousLife

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Election Day

Election day always reminds me of my Gram Shaffer and my grandpa Smith.
My Gram was an extremely active woman in our community.  She never needed to push an agenda, but had a magnificent way of encouraging anyone who she came in contact with of their right and responsibility to be involved in the world they live.
My grandpa continues to be an activist.  He served as the County Commissioner in his town, and I'm proud to say that during my first election in 1996- I was able to vote for him!
Ever since- I have been eager to research and elect people that I believe really want to make a difference in public office.
Naturally it's easy to become agitated or repulsed by career politicians and the media pushing agendas on either side of the aisle.
But a voice inside of me remembers that we are fortunate to live in a country where we have the right to speak up and vote.
Whether you think your vote matters or not- we need to remember that there are so many places in the world where citizens are not free and don't even have the option to submit their "illusion of a choice" so I never take for granted my obligation as a proud citizen of the United States of America.
#RockTheVote!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Fighting With Fire

I'm not afraid to ask for what I want.
I know that everyone who gets anywhere, does so by being bold, fearless and demanding.
I always attempt to be thoughtful, warm and humorous--especially when asking for a big favor.
However, time and again I get further by demanding what I want. (Especially from the people who I've helped out in the past, which is sad and strange.)
Still I realize, you have to fight fire with fire.  And I will not be the one getting burned!
You may not like me as much afterwards, but you'll respect me.  Moreover, you'll work with me again, because I get shit done!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Gingerbread Latte

Isn't it fascinating that such a simple idea exploded into such a massive event-
I'm positive that there are people who have "Starbucks Red Cup Day" marked on their calendars.
The Gingerbread Latte evokes the spirit of the holidays.
My first sip of Christmas in a cup came during a lunch break during rehearsals for the Radio City Christmas Spectacular in New York City.  I was with a group of performers strolling through Rockerfeller Center.  We were tired and needed a pick-me-up.  I broke my usual (twice a day) habit of ordering a Grande Mocha, to try the new festive drink.  Trust me, I spent more money on Starbucks coffee, than I did on rent in my NYC studio apartment during my twenties!  (If only I had that money now.)
I haven't looked back since.
Every holiday season since, I eagerly await the day I can order a taste of Christmas past.
After all, isn't that what we're buying into?
It's commercialism at it's finest.  If you're longing for family, friends or the childhood memories that never existed- look no further than Starbucks.
I promise one sip of their custom holiday specialty drinks will fill you with warmth and happiness!

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Gentle Reminder To Self:

Life is short to leave room for doubt.
It's also too short to stray from doing anything other than what you know in your soul you were born to do!

Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween

I loved Halloween as a child.
Candy aside, I was obsessed with decorating and designing the perfect costume! 
Can you say #gay?!
It makes perfect sense that I chose a career in the entertainment industry-
It's like Halloween everyday. Freaks included.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

A New Word For Goodbye?

I have a difficult time saying goodbye-
Such a simple word, to describe an act that is so loaded with emotion.
Someone is leaving.
Will they comeback? Will you see them again?  Won't you miss them?  Won't they miss me?
We use the word goodbye so casually, it feels like we should have a more appropriate word for a longtime send-off.
"I-love-you-and-I'm-going-to-miss-you-and-I-want-to-remember-this-moment-and-your-laugh-and-the-way-you-smell-and-our-moring-coffees-and-our-addiction-to-posting-photos-and-shopping-sprees-and-I-love-you!"
See.  Doesn't that feel like more than "goodbye"?
But I have no choice.  My mom is leaving, and I have to say something; so I guess it will be thank you and goodbye, followed with a long hug.
Until next time!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Random Observation: Music

That moment you realize that a song from high school makes you feel young, so much so, that you log onto iTunes and download the entire album.
...the one you through away in your mid-twenties because you were so ready to move on!

Monday, October 27, 2014

I Want Candy!

When moms in town, our house looks like a super sized candy store.
Similar to those you see at amusement parks and touristy vacation destinations.
My mom is seriously addicted to sugary treats, and though I usually stay away from all things high fructose corn syrup related, I'm totally guilty of shoving at least a pound of Sour Patch Kids down my mouth!
They taste so good going in, and then I feel like shit.
It's how I imagine Honey Boo Boo child feels daily.
Which is why starting first thing tomorrow I'm getting rid of the junk.
Wait, Halloween is Friday?
Starting first thing Saturday, I'm getting rid of the junk!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Close Shave

Don't get me wrong, men have it easy compared to women when it comes to beauty and styling- especially when it comes to the critique of society.
Nevertheless, men still have necessary maintenance routines in order to avoid being labeled a caveman.
For example, no one ever told me when I was a young boy that I would have to trim my back hair and tweeze my nose hair when I grew up!
But the most annoying grooming gripe is by far shaving!
Razor burn, knick's, dry skin and ingrown hairs are enough to make me rage.
Daily.
Because if I don't shave every single morning- I get acne!
So I'm left with the decision: close shave or pizza face?

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Stuffed!

I need to remember that I am not a turkey and it is not Thanksgiving!
I don't need a second helping of anything.
Diet starts after this chocolate chip cookie...

Friday, October 24, 2014

Pop Quiz

Are pop quizzes ever fun?
The answer:
NO!
It's been twelve years (yes I dated myself) since I've taken a pop quiz;
Last night in my Business Entertainment class, our instructor surprised us with a test.
I knew every answer on the test, but in true Shaffer style- I heard the word "test" and I froze.
I dislike being tested.
Ask me to have a conversation, and I can tell you everything you want to know.  Better yet, ask me to apply what we've learned, and I will shine!
I am a classic overachiever, and my need for perfection always hurts me in situations where there's a piece of paper with a series of questions and a time limit to answer.
I always over-think everything.
In the end I only missed two questions, but I want perfection.
I want an A-Plus every time.
Oh well, there's always the next one.
#LettingGoIsEasierAsAnAdult