Posts Tagged With: Stephen Sondheim

Day 2368: The little things

Five hundred and seventy-eight little days ago (but who’s counting these little things?), little ol’ me wrote a little blog post,  Day 1790: Thankful for the little things.  Yesterday, I was a little perturbed by many little things when I was writing yesterday’s little post, so  I sent Michael this little email:

Hello my darling,
I would say we have an infestation of ants .  This is based on many of them crawling on me this morning while I was blogging, which is a new experience for me here at Squanticello.  Let us research kind ways to invite them to leave.
Much love,
Ann

When I got home from work, Michael was more than a little freaked out at the not-so-little size of the invaders, which turned out to be carpenter ants. He said, “Usually I don’t think of insects as animals, but these enormous winged things are definitely animals.” Michael spent many little moments yesterday identifying the big ants’ little points of entry and applying spray that is kind to little things like children and pets.

I didn’t take any pictures of those little things, but I invite you to spot the little things in today’s little photos.

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I don’t see any little or large ants as I’m creating this little post, so I’d say that Michael’s efforts paid off, in a big way.

Here‘s “The Little Things You Do Together” from a little musical called Company:

Here are the great lyrics to “The Little Things You Do Together”  by that musical giant, Stephen Sondheim:

It’s the little things you do together
Do together
Do together
That make perfect relationships.
The hobbies you pursue together
Savings you accrue together
Looks you misconstrue together
That make marriage a joy.

It’s the little things you share together
Swear together
Wear together
That make perfect relationships.
The concerts you enjoy together
Neighbors you annoy together
Children you destroy together
That keep marriage intact.

It’s not so hard to be married
When two maneuver as one
It’s not so hard to be married
And Jesus Christ, is it fun.

It’s sharing little winks together
Drinks together
Kinks together
That make marriage a joy.
The bargains that you shop together
Cigarettes you stop together
Clothing that you swap together
That make perfect relationships.

It’s not talk of God and the decade ahead that
Allows you to get through the worst.
It’s “I do,” and, “You don’t,” and, “Nobody said that,”
And, “Who brought the subject up first?”

It’s the little things…
The little things, the little things, the little things

The little ways you try together
Cry together
Lie together
That make perfect relationships.
Becoming a cliche together
Growing old and gray together
Withering away together
That make marriage a joy.

It’s not so hard to be married,
It’s much the simplest of crimes.
It’s not so hard to be married,
I’ve done it three or four times.

It’s people that you hate together
Bait together
Date together
That make marriage a joy.
It’s things like using force together
Shouting till you’re hoarse together
Getting a divorce together
That make perfect relationships.
Uh uh
Kiss kiss
Mmmm mmmmm.

I’m greatly looking forward to all your little comments, below.

Gratitude for the little things helps me deal with all the little and big things every day, so big thanks to those who help me create this little blog and — of course! — to YOU.

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Soon after publishing this post, I made up some new little lyrics for that song, more relevant for tall Michael and little me:

It’s battling ants together
Making sure you dance together
Keeping the romance together
That make perfect relationships.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Day 2355: Blame

Who’s to blame for never writing a post titled “Blame” before, even though it’s one of the thirteen cognitive distortions discussed here?

I’m to blame for that and for repeating that description here:

We blame ourselves for every problem, or hold other people entirely responsible for a negative situation or feeling. When we focus on assigning blame and figuring out who is “at fault”, we are usually ignoring the complexity of a situation. Also, blaming can result in staying stuck in negative feelings, rather than moving towards action and solutions.

Does it help to blame?  What about this major news story?

1 million species are at risk of extinction.  Humans are to blame.

I’m very upset about that news story.  Can you blame me?

However, I don’t want to stay stuck in negative feelings. I’d rather move towards actions and solutions. But what actions and solutions are there?

I try not to blame myself for becoming overwhelmed, sometimes, by the immensity of problems.

I do think there is a difference between blaming and taking responsibility. Blaming keeps us stuck in the past and pointing fingers at each other.  Taking responsibility is more adult, focusing less on shame and more on the next achievable steps.

I take responsibility for all these photos and please don’t blame me if they don’t relate to today’s topic (because I took them all before I knew what I was going to write about this morning).

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Here‘s the witch from Stephen Sondheim’s  Into the Woods singing about the futility of blame:

I take responsibility for expressing my sincere gratitude at the end of every post.  Thanks to all for helping me create this blog and for reading it, here and now!

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, therapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Day 1902: What I Know/What I Don’t Know

What I know, here and now, includes the following:

What I don’t know, here and now, includes the following:

  • What you might put on your lists of what you know and what you don’t know.
  • Why I’m avoiding doing my taxes.
  • Whether I’m going to sing new lyrics I wrote to “Mack the Knife” about my Coping and Healing groups at work next week.
  • Who is going to be the next President of the United States.
  • How you might react to my photos from yesterday.

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I know that Bugles have way too much saturated fat but I didn’t know they were America’s #1 finger hat.  Now I know.

I know I love this Stephen Sondheim song (which you may or may not know from a six-month-old blog post).

Today I could choose to see a Stephen Sondheim musical at a local university and/or work on my taxes.  I don’t know what I’m going to do.

I know this:  I could do both. I’ll let you know tomorrow.

I don’t know what I would do without the people who help me write this blog.  I know I appreciate all of them, including YOU.

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Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Day 1876: How man learned

Yesterday, I saw a greeting card with a caption about how man learned.

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I thought it showed how man learned to golf, but it showed how man learned to do something else.

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How Ann learned to blog includes noticing messages from the universe and riffing on them. I’m now imagining future documentation of how man learned to

  • accept others,
  • prevent bloodshed,
  • let go of fear,
  • recognize and reframe cognitive distortions,
  • love,
  • heal,
  • speak up,
  • tell the truth, and
  • do the right thing.

I learned a long time ago how to take photos and trust they would work in the next day’s post.

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How my man Michael learned to cook is a long story, but I’m glad he did.

How man learns to play the piano, by Jon Batiste:

How Ann learned to thank everybody who helped create today’s post and — of course! — YOU:

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

Day 1861: Super

Because today is Super Bowl Sunday in the Super United States, let’s Super celebrate by appreciating what’s Super in our lives.

Is that a Super idea, Super readers?

Super me  had a Super birthday on Super Groundhog Day.  I’m having a Super weekend spending Super time with Super people.  Because I’m a musical theater Super-fan, seeing two musicals in two days  — Road Show by Stephen Sondheim and Love Never Dies by Andrew Lloyd Weber —   was Super, although I’ve seen far Super-ior work from both of those Musical Supermen.

Here are some Super Suppers by Michael, Super Cook.

I wonder what Super Supper Bowl Michael will make tonight. Stay tuned tomorrow for a Super update.

On Super Saturday, I received this Super birthday card from my Super friend, Janet.

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That cat looks Super psyched.

Because I love Super Moons, here‘s a Super video:

 

It would be Super if you left a comment, but I’m Super thankful for you,  even if you don’t!

 

 

 

Categories: gratitude, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , | 28 Comments

Day 1776: Now you know

“Now You Know”  from Stephen  Sondheim’Merrily We Roll Along has  been running through my head a lot lately.  Now you know.

If you didn’t know Lucia Spina is a great interpreter of Sondheim tunes, now you know.

Now You Know

by Stephen Sondheim

All right, now you know:
Life is crummy.
Well, now you know.

I mean, big surprise:
People love you and tell you lies.
Bricks can tumble from clear blue skies.
Put your dimple down,
Now you know.

Okay, there you go —
Life is crummy,
Well, now you know.

It’s called flowers wilt,
It’s called apples rot,
It’s called thieves get rich and saints get shot,
It’s called God don’t answer prayers a lot,
Okay, now you know.

Okay, now you know,
Now forget it.
Don’t fall apart at the seams.
It’s called letting go your illusions,
And don’t confuse them with dreams.

If the going’s slow —
Don’t regret it,
And don’t let’s go to extremes.
It’s called what’s your choice?
It’s called count to ten.
It’s called burn your bridges, start again.
You should burn them every now and then
Or you’ll never grow!

Because now you grow.
That’s the killer, is
Now you grow.

You’re right, nothing’s fair,
And it’s all a plot,
And tomorrow doesn’t look too hot —
Right, you better look at what you’ve got:
Over here, hello?
Okay, now you know,

Now you know!

Now you know the lyrics to “Now You Know.”

Yesterday morning, I visited the amazing home of Jane Hoffmann. If you didn’t know that Jane is the wonderful real estate agent who helped us buy our new home, now you know.

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Now you know you can put blackboard paint on your walls, like Jane did. I love it.

This blog post is for you Jane, for me, and for all my readers, too.

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Now you know.

xo

Ann

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 26 Comments

Day 1739: Facial Expressions

One thousand, two hundred and forty-five days ago, I wrote another blog post titled “Facial Expressions.”  My facial expression would be happy if you read that blog post.  Heck, my facial expression would be happy if you read any of my blog posts.

Yesterday, I drew this  facial expression:

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Pointing to the bottom face, I asked my boyfriend Michael if he knew who that was.   His first tentative guess was “Me?”  My facial expression, in response to that, was probably disbelief, because I have never seen that expression on Michael’s face. His second guess, which was correct,  was somebody we both know.

How would you describe that facial expression?  It’s the  expression I most dread seeing on other people’s faces.

I wonder what expressions were  on my face, just now, when I realized that most of my other photos from yesterday show facial expressions.

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To improve my facial expressions recently, I’ve been listening to the score of “Merrily We Roll Along” by Stephen Sondheim (whose facial expression can be found here).  Here‘s a “Merrily We Roll Along” YouTube video that shows many facial expressions.

Those were the facial expressions I saw TWICE on the stage of the Huntington Theater in Boston.  Now you know.

I hope you know that all expressions are welcomed, below.

My facial expression, here and now, is gratitude for all who helped me create this post and — of course! — for YOU.

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

Day 1736: Are you listening?

Are you listening?  What do you hear?

I’m listening.

I’m hearing many different things.

“Are you listening?” is something I saw on a poster near Boston’s Symphony Hall yesterday.

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After I saw that poster, I was listening to somebody behind me in the audience of Merrily We Roll Along ask

Is Stephen Sondheim still alive?

I turned around and said, “Stephen Sondheim is alive.”

And then we listened to each other discuss Merrily We Roll Along before the start of that amazing musical.  When she asked, “How is the music?” she listened to my reply: “It’s wonderful.”

Because of all the upsetting things I listen to  at work and elsewhere, I’m doing my best to listen to wonderful music and the sounds of nature near where I live.

Thanks for listening and for looking at my other photos from yesterday.

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Are you listening to this YouTube video about the 2012 production of Merrily We Roll Along starring Lin-Manuel Miranda?

Are you listening to Lin-Manuel Miranda’s pleas to contribute to this relief fund for Puerto Rico? I listened to that, too, yesterday.

Are you listening to my requests for comments?

I’m grateful to all who listen, including YOU.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 1730: It’s not that you’re leaving. It’s that you stayed.

Yesterday, I stayed at my computer to read this transcript of Lesley Stahl’s  interview with U.S. Senator John McCain.

This exchange — about his having the same kind of brain cancer a dear friend of mind is currently battling —  will not be leaving me any time soon:

Lesley Stahl: Do you think that this diagnosis has changed you?

John McCain: No.

Lesley Stahl: Not at all. Same person?

John McCain: No, I think you gotta– you know, you just have to understand that it’s not that you’re leaving. It’s that you– that you stayed.

Yesterday,  I was talking to another dear friend, Megan, who works with me and will be leaving the job soon because of a long commute and family obligations. Megan and I have been focusing on her leaving with tears and sadness.  When I said to her, yesterday, “It’s not that you’re leaving.  It’s that you stayed,” we both felt better.

It’s not that you’re leaving this post at the end, it’s that you stayed to read my words and look at my photographs.

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That’s Megan’s office door, and I’m already imagining what it’s going to be like when she closes that door for the last time, in three weeks,  when she leaves. It helps me to remember that it’s not that she’s leaving; it’s that she stayed.

It’s not that I left Merrily We Roll Along at the end of the performance on Saturday.  It’s that I stayed to hear “Opening Doors.”

 

Thanks to you all, for staying.

 

 

 

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

Day 1728: Not a day goes by

Not a day goes by that I’m not

  • grateful,
  • worried,
  • happy,
  • sad,
  • satisfied,
  • disappointed,
  • nourished,
  • nourishing,
  • trying my best to be in the moment,
  • letting go of judgment,
  • blogging, and
  • taking photos.

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Not a day goes by that I’m not amazed how many wonderful people have unusual hearts (like my new friend Annie, with me, above).

Not a day goes by that I’m not hearing a Stephen Sondheim song in my head, like this one from “Merrily We Roll Along.”

Not a day goes by that I’m not eager to hear people’s different perspectives, in blog comments and elsewhere.

As I stated at the beginning of this post, not a day goes by that I’m not grateful — for all those who help me create these posts and YOU.

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, theater | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 32 Comments

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