And they call it puppy love..

So after missing nearly an entire week of school because of the snow, spring break has arrived and with it so have warmer temperatures.

I have spent my time, thus far, relaxing and playing with my little puppy, Windsor. Training a new puppy especially a male dog is an education. Fortunately, I have been reading Family Dog by Richard A. Wolters.

Windsor, 4 weeks old
Windsor, 4 weeks old

The book is very enlightening,  helpful and the pictures and descriptions make it worthwhile and easy. I always thought training a puppy would be hard, annoying. Not so, well at this point anyway.

Windsor, or “Windsor puppy” as my partner and I affectionately call him, was born on January 3rd. He’s growing like a weed. Independent, adventurous, with long legs and a a curious need to get into everything, he has scratched and yelped his way into our hearts.

In my previous post, I did promise I would post a few pictures of Windsor. Here he is in all of his cute glory. IMG_0307

He is teething like crazy, loves to bite and play. It is just wonderful. Along the way, I have learned the value of getting a young puppy on a schedule of both going outside and feeding.

He did very well at his first puppy visit at the Vet’s office. The nurses loved him and his veterinarian was most impressed with his weight and his demeanor.  He goes for his second puppy visit on Friday, I’m so excited about that!

Along with being so excited about a new addition to the family, having a new puppy has also changed my attitude and my level of responsibility. Windsor has calmed me and I find his antics so relaxing and joyous.  He is inquisitive, loves to explore and is learning by leaps and bounds.

I have loved watching him grow and I just know I will always adore him! ❤

Personal Logo?

In my intro to visual communication class one of our projects is to come up with a personal logo. At first I thought this would be a fun project; however, I was not prepared to come face-to-face with my horrific drawing ability. My professor asked for twenty-five “thumbnails” of ideas for a person logo. My drawing ability makes even stick figures seem sad, so this task has quickly gone from “so many great ideas” to WTF am I even doing?!

Relearning Adobe Illustrator was one thing, but this second project, which is due next Thursday, seems to be a tall order.

I have even considered paying someone to help me fashion a personal logo; however, that would defeat the purpose of me learning how to do it myself. It would also be cheating..

Barbra Streisand, Back To Brooklyn

Even if the government is still shutdown and democrats and GOP members continue to squabble about the country’s debt, Obamacare, workers being furloughed, etc I find solace in music and music news. Here are a few things I’ve been thinking about over the past week.

Despite the strong returns (100% ticket sales) on Barbra’s 2012 North American tour, I find it troubling, if not perplexing, that Back to Brooklyn has only been touted to be a one disc affair (versus two, like her three previous concerts) from Streisand’s long-time label, Columbia Records. Given that CD sales have slouched in favor of the more the digital iTunes, and other digital media outlets, is this just a sign of the times or is Columbia losing faith in Streisand as a record selling artist, deciding instead to devote more money to its younger, more hip artists and record buyers?
Can Barbra Streisand still sell records?

Instead of a exclusive deal with QVC, PBS is broadcasting the concert for their fall festival this year. The concert will air next month (for the Winter membership drive) hopefully with extra footage from other concert dates or her summer tour in Europe. The official Press Release from PBS is found here I will not even touch on the subject of the cover art for Brooklyn which has divided fans, some love and others find it cheap, almost fan made – a departure from the usual meticulously planned cover art that Streisand herself usually supervises.

Cover Art for Barbra's new live album and DVD "Back To Brooklyn"
Cover Art for Barbra’s new live album and DVD “Back To Brooklyn”

Given that Barbra has been with the same record company for her entire career, I feel like there was a missed opportunity to celebrate her golden anniversary with a major promotional product push in 2012 (i.e. the fabled 12 disc set that has been rumored about for a while now). In 1991 to celebrate her 30th anniversary, Columbia Records released Just For The Record, a four disc compendium of Barbra’s recording history, featuring rare and unreleased tracks. However, according to Barbra-archives.com, the set was originally mentioned in 1983, it was finally released in 1991. Granted Release Me, last year’s release before her concert tour was a nice compilation of unreleased material from Streisand’s vault, I still think it was a missed chance to do something BIG to keep Barbra Streisand in the forefront of the record buying public.

With speculation of Barbra doing Gypsy having cooled, and the disappointment at the box office with The Guilt Trip, I guess I just worry about Barbra’s staying power as she makes her way into her 70s.

Apparently, she is still working on the Duets album with Walter Afanasieff and Kenneth ‘Babyface’ Edmonds; however, it is anyones guess when that project is being released, possibly early next year?!

Just today, Mary J. Blige and producer David Foster released A Mary Christmas, MJB’s first full length Christmas recording. The album includes a marvelous duet with Barbra Streisand on “When You Wish Upon a Star” and features Chris Botti on trumpet. Fans of Streisand, on the Barbra Streisand forum, were at odds with whether Streisand’s vocals were new or old. Listening to the album and the track itself, they were decidedly NEW and is well worth buying the entire album – which, I might add, is fantastic.

There are thirty-four days until Back To Brooklyn hits record stores and online.

“Write,” she said.

I have to hand it to my mother, she has always had my back. Regardless of what has happened in my life she has been there, cheering me on or giving me much needed encouragement. “You’re a good writer,” she said to me other day. I replied with my typical self-deprecating response, “but my grammar sucks.” I love the way she responded, “so what, not everyone has great grammar. Everyone makes mistakes” she said this quite earnestly too. “You want to be a writer, so write. Write a book, do album and theatre reviews” she exclaimed.

Write a book?! I’ve been jotting down stuff about my life for years. In fact, my own “memoir” has had a working title for nearly ten years. I remember I had a Xanga account years and years ago, and that is where my first thoughts were published – that account has since been deleted. Funny, Xanga and LiveJournal were so popular back in 2003. Now, the once popular blog sites have given way to things like Tumblr and WordPress.

I remember having a germ of an idea I thought might make a good murder mystery, it had something to do with a garden?! I don’t know, maybe I will get back to it one of these days. How does one even go about writing or even drafting a book?!

I enjoy writing I just don’t do it enough. I always feel like I’m all out of ideas. What do people post on blogs? “Today, I had a salad.” or even more prosaic, “Here’s a picture I took on Instagram” (oops, I’m guilty of that).

Here lately, I’ve been posting about my frustrations on the job market. I want to be successful and make something of myself. I have experience in various fields and a college degree; however, even a degree doesn’t guarantee a job anymore.

I’m also considering going back to school for a degree in Mass Communication, seriously I am.

I want to go into television, to be more exact, I want to produce television shows and specials for PBS. Ever since I saw one my favorite  specials, Some Enchanted Evening: Celebrating Oscar Hammerstein II in 1995, I was hooked. I loved the production values, the cast, the music – everything. Sadly, the great moments from Great Performances, which is now entering its 40th season on PBS  have never been released on DVD or VHS for that matter. I want to change that. I love the arts, and I so long to be part of public television.

Goodness, forgive me the desultory sidetrack into my future plans. Yes, I need to write and so I shall..

Too many thoughts..

I need Dumbledore’s Pensieve. I simply have too many memories and thoughts clouding my mind right now. Instead of RLS, I have “Restless Brain Syndrome.”

Nothing is easy at the moment, I just seem to going nowhere. Life was better when I had school to distract me. Last year was so much better, I actually looked forward to counting the days until I saw Barbra in concert and graduated. Now, all I have to look forward to is more job rejections….

I wish the sun would shine for me.

Everyone says, “hang in there” and all I want to respond with is, “f**k you.” I’ve never said that to people and I will not.
It’s hard not to take things personally. I know it’s hard for a lot of people. Many have it worse than I do. Its just hard to see things when you’ve tried, tried and tried – yet get nothing.

I need some help

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Anyone who has a MacBook Pro, could you give me suggestions? It was running really slow, so I restarted and disk utility came up. Tried to repair the disk, nothing doing.

The hard drive is “locked” so not even reinstalling Mountain Lion worked. The icons for both my hard drive and partition were greyed out.

I purchased my Mac in 2010.