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24 October 2011 @ 11:13 pm

I was going to start writing in this blog again, but I've decided it contains too much of a sad past, and it's best not to hold on to it.

So, I'll be starting a new blog.  Very soon.  And when I do, I'll link to it here.


Stay tuned.
 
 
So, now that American Idol is over, life is going back to normal.  It's actually kind of quiet.  It's amazing how much time was involved in planning weekly watch parties.  It was a lot of work.  But Kris won, so it was worth it.

Now, I get to spend the bulk of my time looking for a job.  I actually kind of like the idea of going back to work.  Wedding Photography was a lot of fun, but incredibly unpredictable.  Some months we were super busy, and some months we had nothing.  This year, we've had one wedding.  The economy really hurt us, and we don't have thousands of dollars to advertise.  So there ya go.

The biggest downfall to being a Wedding Photographer is that, at least for me, it took the fun out of the hobby side of it.  I spent so much time working on wedding photos -- taking them, editing them, burning them onto CDs and so forth -- that I lost the desire to take photos just for fun.  I've completely neglected my Flickr account for months, and I have hundreds of photos I still have to go through from trips we took last year (and the year before that).  I'm hoping that I'll be able to find the photography bug again now that I'm not doing the Wedding Photography thing full-time.

So.  Yeah.  Anyhow.

You know that commercial for Cymbalta?  The one that goes, "Where does depression hurt?  Everywhere.  Who does depression hurt?  Everyone."  I can totally relate.

My depression has been pretty bad for quite awhile now.  I've really lost all enthusiasm for life in general.  That's why the American Idol/Kris Allen thing was so great.  People gave me a hard time about it, but they don't understand how it affected me.  It might sound silly, but I felt like I had a purpose.  It was the first time I've been really passionate about something for a long, long time.  When you struggle with depression, just having something in your life that makes you feel important, or appreciated, or gives you some sense of purpose, can make a huge difference.

I honestly find myself feeling incredibly insignificant most of the time.  I don't feel like I make a difference.  At all.  I look at my life, and I feel like I've failed in so many ways.  It's a vicious cycle.  I feel depressed because my life is... not what I had hoped it would be.  The depression leads to feelings of hopelessness and despair.  I feel so helpless and unable to turn things around, which leaves me completely unmotivated, which only leads to more depression.  I wish I could take the feelings of hoplessness and despair and turn them into determination.  I'd get so much accomplished.  I don't know what's stopping me.  When you're depressed, giving up is a lot easier than fighting through it.

It doesn't just affect me, though.  It affects Matt, too.  It has definitely taken its toll on our marriage.  Matt says he's "tired of me being unhappy all the time."  I often feel like Matt would be happier if I was not a part of his life.

We don't even act like we're married most of the time.  We're like two people sharing a house and interacting with each other as little as possible.  I hate it.  I used to see couples out at stores and restaurants who didn't seem to really be interacting with each other, and I remember thinking how sad that was, and how Matt and I would never be like that.  But that's exactly how we are with each other.  When we go out, we're one of those couples that doesn't interact with each other.  We sit at tables at restaurants and play on our Blackberries.  We pretty much ignore each other.  So even when we do stuff together, it's not like we're together.  Even when we watch movies here at home, we don't cuddle up together on the couch... we sit on opposite sides of the room.  Seriously... it's like we're not married.  And it depresses the heck out of me.

I just want to find my purpose in life. I want to feel like there's a reason I'm here.  I want to feel cherished by my husband.  I want to be happy, and I honestly don't know how to do it.  I feel like I've been in a funk for so long, I don't know how to be any other way.

I have an appointment to start seeing a counselor this week.  I'm hoping it helps.

Wow, what a depressing post this is.  Sorry, loyal readers.  It's just kinda where I am right now.
 
 
I'm feeling: depresseddepressed
 
 
25 May 2009 @ 01:42 pm
Because I don't spend enough time online already, I'm now on Twitter.  Follow Me!!


 
 
20 May 2009 @ 09:25 pm
Kris Allen won American Idol!!

I'm so, so happy for Kris, his wife Katy, and his entire family! Wow.... he freaking WON.

We went over to our friends Taunya and Luke's house to watch the finale, and Matt got some lovely shots of my reaction when Kris was announced as the winner.



I was so nervous for him, and then I was shocked, and then I clapped and cheered and then I cried.  Yup.  I actually cried.  I'm shameless in my obsession.

So, congrats to Kris Allen!!  I look forward to following his long and successful career!!

 
 
13 May 2009 @ 08:54 am
 
FOX 10 Phoenix came to my house and interviewed me for a story on my obsession with American Idol Finalist Kris Allen. 

Entertainment Reporter Yetta Gibson and camera man showed up about 3:00 on Tuesday, and we sat down and talked about my love for all things Kris.  Then they came out to my Watch/Vote Party on Tuesday night.  It was a lot of fun.

Yes, it's true.  I am shamelessly obsessed!!

Click here to watch the story on myfoxphoenix.com

Wednesday Morning, I got a call from FOX 44 in Vermont, and they told me that they were going to be running the story on the evening news.  FOX 16 in Arkansas ran part of it as well, which I kind of expected, because that's where Kris is from.  But Vermont?!?!  That's just crazy.

 
 
I'm feeling: obsessed
I'm listening to: "Heartless" by Kris Allen
 
 
 
I did not write this... someone else did.  I copied and pasted it into my blog because I thought it was so funny.  I also did some minor editing, because the original contained language that some of you might find offensive.

For those of you who know me and are totally not into (or totally sick of) American Idol, I apologize. And I ask what is wrong with you, because there epic adorableness going on every Tuesday and Wednesday night, geez!!

That's why I am here. Kris Allen and Adam Lambert need our help! Allison Iraheta fans, I understand your heartbreak. She deserved to be in the final Three, and should not have gone home before Danny Gokey. Nor should have Matt Giraud or Anoop Desai. But your anger and frustration can now be channeled into a higher cause! The cause of Kris and Adam, of genuine friendship, adorableness, musical awesomeness, fierce fashion, and bongos. I know your favorites are gone, but you mustn't dwell! time is of the essence!!

If you don't know why you should care, why you should vote for anyone anymore, why you should even go on living, allow me to present my case.

CLICK HERE TO SEE WHY YOU SHOULD VOTE FOR KRIS ALLEN AND ADAM LAMBERT ON AMERICAN IDOL: AN ILLUSTRATED THESISCollapse )

WHAT YOU CAN DO:
  • Vote like a crazy person. For the full two hours. On multiple phones.
  • Convert the fence-sitters. Tell them about Kris. Or Adam. Or Kris.
  • Post your own Illustrated Thesis, or copy this one and post it. Everywhere. Your Blog, your Facebook Page, your MySpace. Everywhere.
  • Do whatever you feel is necessary to get Kris and Adam more votes. Desperate times call for desperate measures, my friends.
Now, I know some of you want to only vote for Kris. Or Adam. That's totally fine!! Back your horse, man... go for it!! But for those casual voteres, or those who think that there's no point in voting because Gokey can't be toppled, I say to you:  That's what they want us to think! Don't fall into their trap!

Think of how delightful Kris and Adam will be as the Final Two. You don't want to make either of them cry by sending the other one home, do you?


SO, TO SUM UP:

This....



...or this.



These guys....



....or this guy.



Make the right choice, America.

Please note: I got these videos and images from many, many sources in a very short amount of time, due to the fact that I'm supposed to be meeting my personal and professional obligations, and have instead been obsessing. If something is yours and you want it credited or taken down, let me know and I'll take care of it.
 
 
22 April 2009 @ 10:53 am
American Idol has turned into one of the most popular shows on television, and while it's fun to watch over-the-top contestans like Adam Lambert,and witness the drama that ensues every week between Paula and Simon, the bottom line is that American Idol is a show about finding and recognizing the country's best undiscovered talent.  Kris Allen is not only an amazing artist, he is a humble, unassuming young man with a deep love for God and a desire to make a difference in other peoples' lives.  This story is a testament to that.

Kris Allen's friends, family and fans know that he has been on mission trips across the world -- Spain, Morocco, South Africa, Mozambique, Burma, and Thailand. While the most predominant story that has circulated on the internet has been Kris’s near death experience in Morocco when he fell gravely ill, this story is heart-warming and telling of Kris’s character.



Before traveling to Thailand, Kris decided that he wanted to bring along his new $700 guitar, a beautiful Takamine, that his parents had recently given him. Kris’s parents thought he should leave his prized-possession at home and go without the guitar. Promising to keep it safe, Kris chose to take the Takamine.

During his trip across Southeast Asia, Kris managed to transport the guitar unharmed. But one day, Kris attended a worship service at a large refugee camp in Thailand. There was a local girl leading worship playing a guitar, though her guitar wasn’t compatible with the plug for the amps and most of the crowd had difficulty hearing. Kris began to cry; and, feeling moved to act, he approached the stage and the girl. He laid down his guitar, plugged it into the amp, and walked away.

Kris later called his parents, worried that they would be upset with him for having given away his new Takiname guitar. But, of course, the Allens were simply moved by Kris’s gesture and proud of the man they had raised.


Watch American Idol every Tuesday night on FOX, and vote for Kris Allen.  He's everything an "American Idol" should be... inside and out.
 
 
I'm feeling: impressedimpressed
 
 
21 April 2009 @ 10:32 am
On April 7th I got a call from Tiffany at Y107 in Conway, Arkansas, home of Kris Allen, and we talked for a few minutes about what she called my "Kris Allen Vision."  I put a link in a previous post, but people were telling me that they couldn't get the link to work, so here it is again.

Everybody watch American Idol tonight and VOTE FOR KRIS!

Click here to listen to my conversation with Tiffany at Y107


 
 
21 April 2009 @ 08:55 am
BRING ON THE PLATFORM SHOES
AND THE POLYESTER BELLBOTTOMS!!


IT'S DISCO NIGHT!!





 
 
 
I'm feeling: excitedexcited
I'm listening to: The Bee Gees
 
 
20 April 2009 @ 08:15 pm
Several people have asked me, “Um, what’s up with this obsession you have with Kris Allen??” So, here’s the explanation.

Let me just start by saying that I don’t watch American Idol. The only time I’ve ever really watched was Season 3 (2004), when Fantasia Barino won, and even that season I didn’t watch in its entirety. I occasionally watch the “Auditions” episodes, because I love laughing at the number of ridiculous individuals who absolutely can’t sing, but still try to make it through to Hollywood.

This season is different.

For those of you who have never watched Idol and have no idea what it’s all about, let me break it down for ya.

Click Here To Learn How The Whole American Idol Thing WorksCollapse )

This year I watched the auditions, and I saw a few people that I thought were really good. Interested in seeing how some of them did, I watched the episodes from “Hollywood Week.” In February, I went to Seattle to visit my sister for two weeks, and we watched American Idol together.  Early on in the competition, I noticed Kris Allen, and I’ve continued to watch each week just to see him perform.

On March 17th, the theme was "Country Music."  Kris sang Garth Brooks’ “To Make You Feel My Love”. This was the first time I actually clapped and cheered for him.  Click here to watch it.

On March 31st, the theme was “Top iTunes Downloads.”  Kris sat down at the keyboard and did a cover of Bill Withers’ “Ain’t No Sunshine” that had me up out of my chair.  It was phenomenal.  Click here to watch it.

Kris’ performance of “Ain’t No Sunshine” is what ultimately made me decide to “promote” him here in Phoenix and organize Watch/Vote parties for him. I found a restaurant in Mesa willing to host the parties, and I ordered a 2’ x 4’ “Vote For Kris Allen” banner from LinnPrint in Conway, Arkansas (Kris’ hometown).

On April 7th, I got a call from Tiffany at Y107 FM in Conway. She had heard what I was doing from the folks at LinnPrint and asked me if she could interview me on the air. Naturally, I said yes. (Click here to listen to it on the Kris Allen Fan Site.)

Last Tuesday, April 14th, the theme was "Songs From The Movies".  We had our first Watch/Vote Party in Mesa, but the turnout was…. disappointing. Okay, there was no turnout. It was just me and Matt. But I didn’t let it stop me…. I passed out Watch Party fliers to everyone who came in to the restaurant. I talked to them about Kris, and invited them to stay and watch the show. I was pleasantly surprised to see most of the people stay to watch Idol with us. A few of them even cheered and clapped when Kris sang “Falling Slowly” from the movie Once. It was another incredible performance.  Click here to watch it.

During the results show last Wednesday, the judges decided to use their “save” on contestant Matt Giraud, a move I don’t really agree with, because I think his performances have been pretty inconsistent.  That means this week (Disco Week, yikes!!) the two people with the least number of votes will go home.   If When Kris makes it through this week, he will be in the Top Five, which is a really big deal for the finalists, because apparently, most who make it to the Top Five get recording contracts.

So, that’s why I’m spending so much time “promoting” Kris Allen.  It started with me plastering my Facebook page with stuff about Kris.  Then, my friend Allison helped me design a flyer for the Watch Parties (thanks, Allison!).  After that, I went all out. I decorated my car. I went to Café Press and purchased Kris Allen t-shirts. I designed a “Getting To Know Kris Allen” brochure to pass out to people at the Watch Parties.

My friends and family think I’m out of my mind. They tease me and tell me that I’ve gone completely off the deep end. I tell them that if they listened to Kris, they’d understand. It’s not because I think he’s hot (though he does have a sexy charm about him). I’m simply a very dedicated fan. I’m not really sure how it happened, or what it is about him that made me feel so determined to show my support. I’ve always loved music, but very few musicians have such a profound effect on me.

I can honestly say I’ll probably never watch another full season of American Idol, but Kris Allen has me glued to the television each week.  He has a style all his own. I look at him and see an undiscovered, incredibly talented guy who deserves to be recognized.

Maybe I do have too much time on my hands, but I’m having a lot of fun.

For more information about Kris, visit:
The Official American Idol website
KrisAllenation
Facebook Fan Page

For videos of all of Kris’ performances, check out MJ’s Big Blog.


 
 
I'm feeling: obsessed
I'm listening to: Kris Allen, of course!