Ed Sheeran & Ballroom

Ballroom has swept more than just the nation. It’s even creeping (marvelously so) into music videos as demonstrated by Ed Sheeran in his new song, “Thinking Out Loud”.  In this remarkably romantic song, Ed dances this sensual rumba/contemporary number with a talented brunette taking a song that has so much meaning, to another whole level.

I can’t stress how much I enjoy seeing a man dance good ballroom.  There is a romantic aspect to it that I can’t explain. Seeing a young man who wanted to do this — in his words

‘Thinking Out Loud’ is one of my favorite tracks on the album, if not my favorite,” Sheeran said in a press release about the video. “It’s a great one to perform live and means a lot to me. I wanted the video to be a little different, so I opted for ballroom dancing. I had lessons for five hours a day when I was on my U.S. tour last month.”

 

makes the song and dance a pleasure to watch.

I’ve never hidden the fact that I adore ballroom dancing what with my DWTS (Dancing With the Stars) fascination. I go pretty gaga over the whole thing. I want to dance it, I want to be a part of it, I love putting music to a dance. This time a modern singer who is quite marvelous in his own way, has gone and done it for me. He’s taken a marvelous song and put it to a dance just for pure enjoyment.

Am I gushing? Maybe just a little bit, but honestly, watch the video and you tell me if I’m off my rocker. I bet I’m not.

Signing off

Kate

Monte Carlo, The Grand-Prix, and Me

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Monte Carlo Grand Prix at Night

No. I wish. I was not in Monte Carlo watching the Grand-Prix over the weekend. The title of this post is misleading, isn’t it? I can honestly say, however, that I would love to be in Monaco.  Monaco and the Grand-Prix is on my bucket list (I really hate that term) of things to do. I actually probably could have been there two years in a row if I had actually said yes to Boris‘s semi proposal a couple of years ago. I was freaking at turning 30, he wrote me a very convincing email, and I panicked.  But that is neither here nor there.

Ah, Monaco.  Home to Cary Grant and Grace Kelly.  For those of you who do not know, the film, To Catch a Thief. Probably the first film where I fell in love with Cary Grant, Grace Kelly, and Monaco.  In one fell swoop I was hooked.

Monaco…. Home to Selena Gomez, Leighton Meester, and Katie Cassidy…… Okay, sorry, I’m a girl and I honestly LOVE the film Monte Carlo.  Besides the fact that it is so uber girly, it’s just a fun film.  A girl is allowed pink, pearls, and fun dresses.  Romance makes it just that much better.

The Grand-Prix. I can honestly say that it was because of Boris that I even pay any attention to Formula 1 racing. Granted, it is a very high end type of racing and much more fascinating than a horse race or, lord help us, NASCAR, but on the whole, it’s not the top of my things to watch. However, because it is quite classy, and the guys who race are rather gorgeous, I can’t help but be quite taken with it. I’m slowly learning names…. Thank you Top Gear for having Lewis Hamilton on so I would know who he is…. and while I can’t watch the whole race , it’s rather exciting.  I know that I could thoroughly enjoy the race if I were there. With Boris…..  Moving on as I laugh.  Sorry, people. It’s almost two in the morning as I type this.  I had a much more clear post in my head at six in the evening. I should have written this then.

So let’s just end with: Bucket list of going to Monaco to see the Grand-Prix.  Yep, that pretty much sums it up. Oh and if I just have to go to France while I’m there….. I’ll visit Nice, Marseilles, and the Riviera.  Oh wait, isn’t Monaco on the Riviera?

Happy Memorial day everyone!

Signing off

~Kate

 

 

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A Peek Into Kate’s Obsessions

Currently I’m obsessed with several things, which in turn has taken up my time so that I’m not writing blog posts like I normally would. Granted, I usually only get one a week posted, but I haven’t even done that. I’m so far behind my norm that it’s getting out of control. At this rate, or as it stands, I have to type up at least 5-8 posts and try and schedule them for the month so that I can have a bit more downtime during the holiday season.

But until then, here is a peek into my current obsessions and time consuming pursuits. Usually I have three periods during the year where I’m obsessed with something. Springtime usually means Jane Austen, though it seemed to run more mid summer this year. Spring was Georgia O’Keefe, this time around.

  1. Colin O’Donoghue as Captain ‘Killian Jones’ Hook

    Once Upon a Time
    This season of OUAT has been incredible. The plot is so incredibly ridiculous and fabulous that I don’t even know where to start. The family tree of Henry is on beyond the realm of normal thought. But it is so cool. The story makes you just keep coming back for more. Not counting the character of Captain Hook.  Killian Jones, as his real name happens to be, has got to be one of the sexiest actors on a drama right now. Not only is he incredibly charming, he has this way with words (an Irish accent doesn’t hurt), these devilishly good looks that he gives Emma, and an actually really good heart. I’ve even delved into the fan fiction realm regarding what is known as ‘Captain Swan’. Oh, the fan fiction and Captain Swan speculations out there will keep a girl’s heart fluttering at an alarming rate.  Pardon me while I go hyperventilate into a bag or sob in the closet.  All kidding aside, I’ve gone a bit fan girl on the whole show, and my Tumblr account     shows it with various OUAT fan posts, quotes, videos, and chatter between other diehard OUAT fans.  #LongLiveCaptainSwan

  2. Tyler+Hubbard+CMT+Music+Awards+Wonderwall+ZbMiZAHQCaelFlorida Georgia Line I’m not sure when I decided to actually listen to these guys, but I think it was right after the CMA’s that I actually didn’t watch. I missed them, and I think I was on Tumblr and there were posts about these boys. Well, I decided to listen, finally, to their song “Cruise”.  And that was it. I fell in love with them. Due to the ‘love’ part, I’ve now used Tyler Hubbard as a model for a new novel I’m busily tapping writing away at. It’s been a blast to look them up, see pictures, hear songs, and *gasp* see them play at the AMA’s, which was incredibly cool, despite my father rolling his eyes in disgust. Sorry, I know it isn’t ‘real’ country, but it is fun.
  3. Luke Bryan playing a ‘classic’ bro-country song (That’s My Kind of Night)

    Which brings me to my next obsession. Bro-Country Blame it on FGL, but now I’m slightly overdoing the bro-country music (I’m not even sure I know how to spell that) It’s this new genre of non country that has swept the music charts, just in case you don’t listen to country, like me, or haven’t heard the term. Singers like Luke Bryan, Jake Owen, Chris Young, etc., sings songs that seem to have the themes of girls with no name, painted on jeans, moonlight, a truck, always the weekend, always summer, possibly a rap bridge, and beer.  It’s sad. It’s the farthest thing from country next to Taylor Swift and her pop queeness. But I love it and since I’m writing about a singer who sings bro-country, well, listening to it helps. It isn’t because it’s catchy…. ‘Aw Naw

  4. Fernando Sor

    Fernando Sor
    This is a recent obsession and it hasn’t taken full hold over me. Recently I was invited to see an homage of Fernando Sor at my local theater, which is really quite small.  The homage was done by the talent John Doan. I won’t go into details about him, you can see what he does on his website, here, but it gave me a taste of modern classical guitar. It was stunning and moving and I was left breathless as I heard this most amazing music played. Now, I haven’t had the opportunity to hear a lot of Fernando Sor’s actual compositions, but I’ve started looking and so far, it’s really quite wonderful. Something I plan to use for part of my novel.

So, four obsessions isn’t that bad, but they do take up time. It’s interesting that three of them are music. But as I’ve always been one to love music and have it on all the time, it’s not unusual.

I’m curious, what are any of you obsessed with? Something embarrassing like Once Upon a Time? Or something more innocuous?

Let me know.

Signing off

~Kate

Throwing Three Prompts Into My Life

Okay WordPressers, I am going to throw three The Daily Post prompts into one post.  Why, you ask?  Well, honestly it’s because they all seem to fit together, at least for my state of mind.  That might mean I’m a little off my rocker, but I think I am allowed that. I am

  1. a female. I can do whatever I want, right? (not really, but it’s my prerogative) AND
  2. I met a guy.  That pretty much throws common sense out of the window at any given point. So please bear with me.

First prompt was No Fair.

I don’t think it’s very fair to meet an incredible guy, only to have said guy tell you that you will make some guy very happy someday.  Especially when you have just clicked with ‘this’ guy and by clicked, I mean really clicked.  Then to have the guy leave.

I am a very single girl woman living where there supply of decent, eligible, marriageable men is severely limited. I mean, severely.  I can probably count on one hand the men I know that are somewhat in this category.  The rest of the men my age are either married themselves or are in the sketchy category.  So, when a charming man who is single, has a good job (a really good job) is a marvelous flirt and a brilliant kisser, comes into your life, you kind of want to hold onto said guy.  It’s not fair to have him up and leave.

Okay, yes, he is hiking the PCT.  He does only have two weeks of vacation left before he has to get back to work at a hospital in Portland, Oregon (can I hear a luxurious sigh, because that’s what I did). He does have family to visit. The weather is not holding out.  But come on.  Pretty girl. Interested pretty girl.  Couldn’t you stay? Like one day longer?  Especially when you have had one incredible evening?  Fair. Ha!

Second prompt. Standstill (and this is not in the exact order that they have been in because I have to fit the non sequitur into the last paragraph)

Oh if I could bring time to a standstill.  I know the ‘rules were for today, but the heck with today. I wish I could make that evening stand still for hours longer.  Five hours was not enough time.  I could just replay it over and over for much longer.

I sometimes wish I could have that standstill moment when important things happen.  So that you can really savor the time and the circumstances.  I would make everything last just a little bit longer.  Heck, if I couldn’t have that time stop, at least slow down.  Time flies too fast for me and nothing ever lasts as long as I want.  An amazing evening with an amazing guy not withstanding.

Last prompt. Non Sequitur.

He tried to hit me with a forklift!   Not really, but I feel like I’ve been at least run over and in the process he took half my heart.  (yes, I realize this prompt does not even closely resemble not being related because I made it relate, but honestly, who talks like that? What I mean is, no one ever says he tried to hit me with a forklift, when they are talking about being struck by something)  So now I’m hoping to either have kept a part of his heart, or at least if not that, he will give back mine at some point.  Right now, he gladly has my heart, not that he really knows, and hopefully while he’s still hiking up to Ashland, OR, it’s keeping him warm at night. (we are getting snow down to the 5K ft. line.  brr.)

And I’m breaking the above prompt because here’s one more paragraph.  Connections you make with people are funny sometimes.  You never know when you are going to just click with someone, and sometimes it just comes out of nowhere.  And you don’t know if you are both clicking or if it’s just one of you.  I like to think that we both clicked, but only time will tell.  Do you all care what way it goes?  Probably not, but that’s okay because this is my minor decompressing and also a chance to try relating three prompts.  I thought it kind of fun.

Signing off

~Kate

The Buzz of It All

yellow jacket's dinner

Yellow jacket on a raspberry flower. These are guys I don’t mess with per say, but they are marvelous as well.

The humble, darling honeybee.  There is something so special about them and yet, I think people forget about them.  Right now I find them hard to forget as I am usually elbow deep in them as I pick raspberries.  they fill the rows of canes with their steady hum as they buzz throughout the blossoms.  Reminding my of W.B. Yeats’ poem, The Lake Isle of Innisfree:

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,

And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:

Nine bean rows will I have there, a hive for the honeybee,

And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

The imagery that this poem invokes is utterly romantic in form.  While I don’t live in a bee-loud glade, bees are a constant here.  I wouldn’t know what to do without them around all the time.

honeybee on a rasp

Hanging in there for dinner

I have a very pleasant relationship with bees, absolutely adore them, and probably like them way more than most people do.  I think the bees know it as well. I can thrust  my hands into the canes to pick, bumping up to bees and not having to worry about being stung. Sure, I have been stung, but that was when I rested my hand on a bee.  And the poor dear did not make it out alive.

Glutton resized for Picassa

Gluttonous honeybee on a raspberry flower.

Bumble bees and those beautiful, black, bombing Carpenter bees don’t die if they sting you (love that alliteration) and I have the experience to back that up.  Who knew you shouldn’t pick up Carpenter bee females from possibly drowning in the pool.  It would have been fine had I not used my bare hand.

But I respect bees, and they respect me.  I am forever rescuing honeybees that are half drowned by my watering.  And I hate to see the older girls slowly fade away as they are dying, until one morning you find the still form of one in the dewy grass.  One who will never move again.

Bees are my friends.  A friend of my family is deathly afraid of bees.  She is allergic, I think, so stays far away from them.  It brings to mind a poem I read the other day in  Orion magazine‘s September/October issue about a woman that has an uneasy reltaionship with Shasta daisies and bees.  The bees love her daisises which are around her mailbox, and she’s allergic to bees.  You can read the poem in the picture below.

PerilloI love the line “Going to the bees’.  Actually, I just love the whole darn thing.  I’m fortunate that I don’t have to worry about bees that way.  I putter along, picking berries, brushing buzzing, fuzzy bodies, brandishing my camera when I remember to have it on hand.  I adore taking pictures of bees. I wish I could have a catalog I’ve done of every bee.  As in I want to catalog every bee with pictures and more pictures.  I adore bees.  And I like the thought of going to the bees, when I’m out picking in the hum drum sounds.

And that is itself is the buzz of it all.

Signing off

~Kate

Really, Was Darcy and Rochester Any Better Than Today’s Romantic Life?

Reality is so depressing.

Why is love so awkward and unstreamlined in real life? Can’t we all just be as brave as Mr. Darcy, or Mr. Rochester, or Jane Eyre or Lizzie Bennett?

I read this recently on Tumblr when I was hunting pictures of Mr. Rochester, aka Michael Fassbender.  I sat there for a while, thinking, oh this is a great line.  Why isn’t love like those books.

Then I got thinking.

It wasn’t really so clean cut.  In both Pride and Prejudice and Jane Eyre, everyone is so vague.  No one just comes out and says, “Hey, I like you, wanna go get a cup of coffee?”  They talk in riddles and vagaries.

It takes Darcy forever before he actually tells Elizabeth that he wants her and he prefaces it with an insult .   Granted, it’s not the world’s worst statement, but a woman would take it as an insult, and I kind of think she should.  I would take it as an insult.  Yes, I would want to be told: “His sense of her inferiority–of its being a degradation–of the family obstacles which had always opposed to inclination, were dwelt on with a warmth which seemed due to the consequence he was wounding, but was very unlikely to recommend his suit..”

Okay, sure, what he’s saying is that despite all of those obstacles he still wants to marry her, but really, do you want a man that is going to insult you?

And after watching Jane Eyre, and enjoying the film, though I thought there was much that they could have from the book, I found Mr. Rochester  a bit of a jerk.  Now, I have yet to finish the book, though I find I am enjoying it, and I have a feeling there will be more ‘meat’  than the film which seemed to leave much of the conversations out.

While I don’t doubt that Rochester loves Jane, he’s cruel at times, insulting, abrupt, and well, deceitful.  You want him and Jane together, because you can see the purity in Jane’s love, but you know she really needs to leave.  It’s heartbreaking for Jane because she has to leave the man she loves.

When she finally returns to Rochester, a woman grown instead of a somewhat starry-eyed young governess ; a woman who doesn’t need a man to take care of her, the love has changed.  Matured in some ways.   Of course  it took some extreme circumstances, but it’s better.  But the fact that it (the story)  had to go through so much ‘drama’.  And they say people have drama now.  What about Jane and Rochester?  Now that is drama.

Don’t get me started on Emma.  Why, if Mr. Knightly loved Emma, did he wait forever to tell her?  You almost think he’s never going to tell her.  You get so anxious that it’s not going to turn out okay.  I’ve yet to read Emma, it’s on my list, and I’ve not finished Pride and Prejudice, but I have finished Persuasion. Thank goodness for the films, otherwise I might not have gotten through them. The films are the only reason I actually read Persuasion.  Had I gone by just the book, I might not have finished it. Same with Jane Eyre. I had to see the movie to see what I was struggling to get through in the book.

I can relate though to that feeling Meg Ryan says in You’ve Got Mail.  “Confession, I have read Pride and Prejudice two hundred times. I get lost in the language, words like ‘Thither. Mischance. Felicity.’ I’m always in agony over whether Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy are really going to get together.”   I feel that way with all of the Jane Austen stories. I felt it with Jane Eyre as well. You really are in agony over whether or not it’s actually going to work out okay, even though you know!

Well, I’m sorry, life is confusing enough. I don’t want a love where I’m in agony over whether or not it’s going to turn out okay.  I was in a relationship like that.  It wasn’t fun. I want to know when a guy likes me. I don’t want to have to sit and guess.  And it wouldn’t hurt if he’s kind, loyal, trustworthy.

So, do I want a Mr. Darcy.?  Only sort of. I would much prefer a Mr. Darcy that won’t insult me. That being said, I still get a delightful thrill thinking about both Darcy and Rochester.

Signing off

~Kate

Love Songs for Valentine’s Day

Happy Valentine's day!

Happy Valentine’s day! (Photo credit: DonnaGrayson)

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner.  Okay, no, it’s really just nine days away.  Not long.  I don’t do much for the holiday unless you count wearing something pink, or red.  It’s kind of hard to do much on a holiday where I’m sort of what you call, um, single.  Ha ha.  No sort of about it.

But despite that, I love anything Valentine’s-y.  I love all the hearts. I love all the pink. Gobs of pink everywhere. I love the cool things and stuff.  I won’t go into details.  That’s not why I’m here today.  Today, I am here to talk music.

The Enemies

Yep, you say, she’s at it again.  She’s going to ramble on about The Enemies.  Well, you might be right.  Because that is where the inspiration for this post started.  I was thinking about their song ‘Pretty Valentine’, as it is on my Go To list on my mp3 player, lead song mind you.  However, I was also thinking about other really cool love songs.  Not your traditional ones like, oh, “As Time Goes By” and “My Heart Will Go On”.  We all know those.  Those are the classics. I’m kind of disgusting myself by saying a Celine Dion song is a classic, but hey, whatever floats your boat. It is not one of my more inspiring songs.

Moving on.  So in no particular order, though I’m going to put ‘Pretty Valentine’ at the top, here are some cool love songs I’m listening to right now.

  1. Pretty Valentine – The Enemies
  2. I Will Wait – Mumford & Sons
  3. Stubborn Love – The Lumineers
  4. Sunday Kind of Love – Beth Rowley
  5. If You Were The Only Girl In The World – Stanley Holloway
  6. Heartbeat – Enrique Iglesias feat. Nicole Scherzinger
  7. Give Into Me – Garret Hedlund and Leighton Meester
  8. Try – P!nk
  9. Just The Way You Are -  The Piano Guys (a Bruno Mars Cover)
  10. A Thousand Years – Christina Perri (Also brilliant by The Piano Guys)
  11. Lil’ Darlin’ – Count Basie
  12. Rivers and Roads – The Head and the Heart
  13. You Go To My Head – Billie Holiday (the classic) and Rod Stewart (the not so classic)
  14. Overwhelmed – Tim McMorris
  15. Rain – Patty Griffin

Okay, so this list is far from complete. I live for love songs. I think I may have mentioned that recently.  I’m totally in love with “Pretty Valentine”.  Sorry I keep rattling on about it.  I can’t help it.  I urge you to check it out HERE 

I could add in all the links to the other songs, but well, I’m sure you can find them y’all.  So, I’m curious.  Tell me some of your favorite love songs. They don’t have to be traditional. They can be wacky, weird, or all points in between.  I’m always up for a new love song.

Signing off

~Kate

Hopeless Romantic That I Am

I can honestly and proudly admit I am a hopeless romantic.  Give me a love story, granted, a good love story, and I’m hooked.  I see romance in all forms of life.  My daydreaming plotting  is filled with romance, and when I have to get down to brass tacks when it comes to writing, yes, I want to write a great romance story.  Or love story.

So, I have been quite hooked on Mumford & Sons‘ new song “I Will Wait’. Whether or not it is actually a love song, I am going to take it as one.

First, I have to credit Timothy of The Creative Juicer for introducing me to this song.  I highly recommend his post, Musical Musings – I Will Wait, to give you the perfect reason to listen to this song. I can’t, and won’t try, to even explain how brilliant this song is. Just read Timothy’s post.

Well, the first part of the song that got to me and like Timothy, gave me chills, was the line

Like a stone And I fell heavy into your arms

For me that is like just uber romantic, because a guy is saying this.  Most of the time in love stories, it is the girl that is talking about falling in love.  Falling into her man, falling period.  It’s women that fall.  But…. here you are seeing it from a guy’s point and I think that is just really quite something.  Magical.
See, I told you I was a romantic and could find it just about anywhere.
Now, the rest of the song is great but the chorus is what I like best.  I like the first quiet chorus, then the second louder one. I just love the repetition of
And I will wait, I will wait for you

Over and over. I believe love waits.  True love that is.
Right now this is MY song.  Okay, from Timothy’s post, it’s kind of his song as well. We are sharing I guess.  This song is perfect for me right now as I wait for something, or someone to happen.
I have the song on frequently and while I don’t have all the lyrics down, I think I might before long. (it would probably help if I got the British accent a bit more and could understand what is being sung. Thank goodness for lyrics sites.)
Well, I hope you all check out the song, especially if you are a Mumford & Sons fan.  But, even if you aren’t, it’s still an incredibly good song.  I’d have to say one of their best.
And this is one romantic who will probably keep listening to it obsessively.
Signing off
~Kate

Things I’m Loving Right Now

Maybe because it’s late summer, or maybe it’s just August, but it seems that I kind of have a ‘fall in love with…’ moment every time this year.  I almost pulled out Poemcrazy yesterday, then decided that I needed to finish other books before I get lost in words and thought again.

Things I’m loving right now are as follows.

Cutest couple ever!

Paige and Evan from Royal Pains. I swear they have got to be the cutest couple ever. And I thought Chuck and Sarah were cute, but nothing tops the sheer scream factor cuteness of Paige and Evan. If you haven’t seen Royal pains, then I assure you, it is a really fun show, though if you were to just get started now, you might be a bit lost. All I know is I want Paige to be my best friend (if I lived in the Hamptons)  and I so want to have a relationship like the two of them.

Such a cute ‘non’ couple!

Annie and Auggie of Covert Affairs.  These two are so cute and they aren’t even a couple yet.  Though trust me, they should be.  Super cool Annie and adorable geek Auggie with his really gorgeous body…. The cool nerd.  I’m a big fan of Covert Affairs, but this year is so much fun.

Lovely man.

Jeremy Renner.  I usually don’t get too gaga over actors, but occasionally there are a couple that I just love. This guy I first saw in a very short lived drama on ABC called The Unusuals.  Loved him then, love him now as possibly the new replacement for Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise’s Mission Impossible character) as William Brandt. He’s the new guy in the Bourne films, and just an all around gorgeous man.  It’s doesn’t hurt that he hails from my neck of the woods, Modesto, California.  In fact he was in high school while I was growing up there…. I have to use him as a character for something!

The Lumineers

The Lumineers.  This band is so cool. Folksy and  really fun to listen to, my first introduction to them was their song ‘Ho Hey’. Now I’m recycling ‘Flapper Girl’ and ‘Stubborn Love’ over and over on my Creative Zen. It doesn’t hurt that ‘Stubborn Love’ was used on Covert Affairs.

Thick books.   I know, it’s a bit counterproductive to read thick books right now when I actually have no time, but I can’t resist for some reason. Right now the book I’m carrying everywhere with me is  Van Gogh : The Life by Steven Naifeh.  I’m not very far into it, but it is super fascinating.

And lastly, poetry books. Particularly the ones I picked up a week or so ago. Right now it’s Bronte and Byron I’m reading.  In Byron it’s Don Juan and I love it.

So there are a few things I’m loving right now.  They are giving me inspiration and it’s kind of cool.

Signing off

~Kate