WHAT’S THE END GOAL HERE?

Hello, my name is Sarah and I’m a podcast-holic. 

My line up of favorite shows contains equal parts writing or online entrepreneurial advice, inspirational motivators and true crime podcasts – that my kids introduced me to.  

podcast good life project

Today, while listening to the Good Life Project, host Jonathan Fields and special guest, author Geneen Roth (from the 12/29/20 episode), discussed “You don’t need to be fixed.”  Jonathan brought up a thought that totally made me stop and think.  He mentioned how fascinated he is wondering whether people truly seek to improve themselves through  transformation or liberation? …and now I am curious too!

I’ve headed out on such a transformation journey as someone who loves to learn new things every day. I love making small adjustments and seeing how they feel the next time something comes up. I love feeling like I’m improving, and when something goes the other direction the promise of a new day gives me hope.  However, now that I’m reconsidering my stance, I see that transformation may never end. I may not ever reach the finish line and feel successful.  But, I’m a progress, not a perfection kinda gal.

Yet, I see the freeing goal of liberation – shedding that which no longer serves us.  It’s a larger commitment to focus in on the trouble areas and draw boundaries. That big elephant is no longer welcome in the room. Then, when the weight lifts, we soar! Perhaps our acceleration has a steeper curve since we grow unencumbered. To me the downside feels as though this may require a stronger commitment. I’m not always strong enough for that.

As Geneen pointed out, as she worked hard on herself, things that used to bother her no longer would. …Until they did. Be patient with yourself. Neither transformation, nor liberation, offer a money back guarantee. Perhaps it boils down to what makes you feel most like you’re in control of your life?  Thoughts?!

If you, like me, love taking those tests to find out what Friends character you are, what personality type you are or how old you are, why don’t you check out what SPARKETYPE you are! I call it a light-hearted self-improvement activity that makes you think introspectively with a quick test that may give you some captivating insight about yourself! Once you know better,  you do better!

What about you?

  • Which approach do you believe in – transformation or liberation?
  • What are the pros and cons?
  • Who are your mentors?
  • Have any tips?
  • Can you see the argument for the other option?
  • What is your favorite podcast – I’ll check it out!
  • If you want to know what other podcasts make me go hmmm, drop your email in the top right box on the page to wander along with me!
    (I have no relationship with the Good Life Project other than being a fan!)

SONGS MY HEART SINGS

kind

Happy Valentine’s Day! Are your favorite Love Songs listed here?

Every day, but especially Valentine’s day, music has the ability to alter my mood. With today being the national reminder to love one another, I pulled together a soundtrack of songs that put me in the mood… to skip down the sidewalk tossing confetti hearts at everyone I pass.

Love Will Keep us Together by Captain & Tennille

Your Song by Elton John

I Just Called to Say I Love You by Stevie Wonder

Crazy for You by Madonna

Groovy Kind of Love by Phil Collins

(Everything I Do) I’d Do it For You by Bryan Adams

Because You Loved Me by Celine Dion

Silly Love Songs by Wings

Still the One by Shania Twain

Just Haven’t Met You Yet by Michael Bublé

BONUS: Baby Baby by Amy Grant

I know, I missed a whole bunch that commercially were bigger love songs, but these are my songs that can break my heart and make it sing at the same time – what are yours?

What would be on your Valentine’s Day Mix Tape?
Share your all-time favorite love song – if you can pick one!
Any other favorite ways to say “I Love You!”
Any favorite Valentine’s Day traditions?
Wanna buy any of the songs? Click thru on the song title!

#lovesong #love #IHeartYou #Valentine #Baby #ILoveYou #LoveYou #Crush #BeMine #CaptainandTenille #Madonna #EltonJohn #StevieWonder #PhilCollins #BryanAdams #CelineDion #Wings #ShaniaTwain #MichaelBuble #AmyGrant #Soundtrack

FAVORITE (& A FEW NEW) HOLIDAY ALBUMS

Whew, what a long spell without blogging! I’ll admit that I was surprised how events happening earlier this month on 11/9/16 scrambled my brain a bit and threw me off my blogging path!  Though I’d love to blame it on the election chaos, the truth lies in the fact that holiday music started playing around the clock on one of my favorite stations that same day – weeks before Thanksgiving!!  Now don’t get me wrong, music single-handedly gets me in the holiday mood faster than ugly sweaters and outlandish Christmas lights! Just call me old fashioned (or call me scarred from when I used to work in music and would hear holiday music heralding the halls in July) but I can’t listen to Christmas music before Thanksgiving is done.

Now that you know my quirks, here are my traditions. We always buy one new Christmas album every year.  Below I’ll share with you our all time-favorites, and the highest contenders for this year.

CLASSICS
ELVIS PRESLEY – IF EVERY DAY WAS LIKE CHRISTMAS

xmaselvis

Nobody keeps you warmer on these cold winter nights. He’ll wrap you in his voice and sing to you as if you were cuddling by a fire. It has my all-time favorite song “Blue Christmas” and even has a holiday message from the King himself.
Runner up:  BING CROSBY – White Christmas

COMPILATION
THE BIG 80’s

xmas80s

From Billy Squier to Hall & Oats, Pat Benatar, Queen, The Pretenders, The Smithereens and The Ramones – to name a few – my childhood favorites come together to perform the ultimate holiday concert!   It features the funtastic “Christmas Wrapping” song about the girl and the guy trying to hook up all year but holiday magic brings them together for cranberry one holiday eve!
Runner up: NOW THAT’S WHAT I CALL CHRISTMAS

DIVA
MARIAH CAREY – MERRY CHRISTMAS

xmasmariah

Just last night on the Disneyland Holiday TV special, this diva belted out her instant classic (that she wrote back in 1994) and the world sang with her: “All I Want for Christmas Is You!” Her gospel tracks on this album get you rolling into the holidays and praying for her to do a whole gospel album. I know there was MERRY CHRISTMAS II YOU but it just wasn’t as DIVAlicious!
Runner up: CELINE DION – These Are Special Times

CAST
GLEE: THE MUSIC: THE CHRISTMAS ALBUM VOLUME 2

xmasglee

Not only do we miss our favorite voices singing to us regularly, but the arrangements on this show have always been worth a closer listen. They artfully highlight everyone’s voices through their choices of songs and partners. My favorite features Santana (Naya Rivera) singing “Santa Baby.” I love how her voice captures the classic tune, but one can sense the power she’s holding back!
Runner Up: A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS

CHILDREN
DISNEY CHRISTMAS FAVORITES, VOL. 2

 

xmasdisney

Honestly, pick up any Disney Christmas album and you’ll find a wonderful collection of classics and a new song or two. Characters will make you smile with songs, or you’ll find classic holiday tunes from the Parks.  I’ve never gone wrong with any holiday album from them and my kids love each one.
Runner Up: TIM BURTON’S A NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS

A CAPELLA

THE NYLONS – HARMONY

xmasnylonsWhile Pentatonix is bringing a capella to the forefront again, I’m guessing The Nylons probably helped influence them.  You may know them best from their song “Lion Sleeps Tonight” but you need to know their version of “Carol of the Bells! Rather than a Runner Up in this category, let’s turn right into… 

2016 CHRISTMAS MUSIC

PENTATONIX – A PENTATONIX CHRISTMAS

xmaspent

Speaking of Pentatonix, their career crescendo has hit a high note with the release of this, their 2nd, Christmas album. This group of vocalists who came from a variety of colleges (even one high school) and singing backgrounds to form the group that got its start on Youtube.com. Their “Hallelujah” video, released just 5 weeks ago, already has close to 12 million views.

SARAH MCLACHLAN – WONDERLAND

xmasmclach

Sarah’s angelic voice brings me to tears when singing any song, so pairing her with classic Christmas tunes truly brings the most golden sound you’ll hear.  After hearing her ethereal version of “Angels We Have Heard On High” you’ll feel as though angels were singing directly to you.  

SHE & HIM – CHRISTMAS PARTY

xmasshehim

Amazon Exclusive Deluxe Edition!

For those of you who may not know who makes up this duo, it’s a musical partnership of actress Zooey Deschanel on vocals and ukelele and M. Ward on guitars.  Their throwback sound perfectly teases us with an island holiday wishing “Mele Kalikimaka” – a classic everyone knows the chorus to, but now you can learn the rest of the verses.

What about you?
What is your favorite Christmas album?  Will you add to your collection?
If you wrote a holiday song about your life what would it be called?

 

#Pentatonix #Elvis #SheandHim #TheNylons #Glee #Gleek #Celine #CelineDion #Mariah #MariahCarey #Christmas #Holiday #NewYear #Soundtrack #Album #Disney #DisneyPixar #IBelieveInDisneyMagic #BingCrosby #NightmareBeforeChristmas #TimBurton #CharlieBrownChristmas #Peanuts #SarahMcLachlan #80s

PARENT MUSIC FESTIVAL TRAINING PROGRAM – Part 3 of 3

Last session before your music festival event! You’ve trained for loud levels and longevity! You’ve prepped for festival fun.

Couch to Music Festival: Parents Training Guide

Again, while this applies to Wango Tango, the program easily adapts to Coachella, Stagecoach, or other festivals.

  • ATTIRE: Most music festivals take place outdoors during the spring or summer. Some experience significant temperature changes from day to evening – the more you dance, the less you’ll notice.
    • WHAT’S HOT: Crazy Loosey
      • Loose flowing clothes – Slightly stretchy, cut-outs. Clothes that won’t interrupt your groove but breeze blows through – all while fiercely flattering.
  • Accessorize – Hats or glasses required! Red sunburned faces or eyes aren’t cool – ever. Keep hats streamlined to not hinder people’s views.
  • Cute compression socks – Crazy socks are in! Concert-goers will applaud as your wild socks with cute boogie shoes outdance them
  • Comfy shoes – if you can find something in a boot or chunky heel, you’ll be above the crowd for best viewing!

WHAT’S NOT: Mom or dad jeans

mom jeans

WTF Wango Tango Fangirls may change their minds about Mom Jeans – totally CUTE!

  • FUELING: Eat to stay strong for your music marathon:
    • HYDRATION vs RAGING – While there are tons of fun drinks in the festival, try to drink to hydrate:
      • Alternate – Every other drink alternate between water and soda or alcohol
      • Combine – Gatorade Margaritas, they’re real!
    • ALL-DAY FUELING – Eat a protein-filled breakfast with light carbs, preferably whole fiber. Consider bringing snacks to ensure your energy lasts all night long! The festival contains quick pick-me-up options but watch out for the crash!

Food

  • MEDALS OF COMPLETION:
    • ROCK-N-ROLL VOICE: Even with voice training, you’re apt to get some sexy, smoky voice. Time to re-do your phone voicemail!
    • EVENT JERSEY: Not only do you and fellow jersey-wearers share an instant bond, it’s a badge of pride that you went the distance!
    • ASSUAGED STRESS/MIDLIFE SYMPTOMS: With great tunes, views, and artists you’re bound to recapture your youthful spirit and strengthen family/friendship bonds! Clapping and dancing blows away stress leaving you more centered. Adrenaline highs boost productivity

Stay loose and have crazy fun! Let me know if this plan gets you into the groove to go all night or makes you look forward to your event with renewed vigor!

Let me know if I forgot anything and what music festivals you will hit!

PARENT MUSIC FESTIVAL TRAINING PROGRAM – Part 2 of 3

First, we kicked off and ramped up music festival endurance training. Now, focus shifts to comfort during and after the event!  While this applies to Wango Tango, one can easily adapt the program to Coachella or Stagecoach or longer events.

Couch to Music Festival: Parents Training Guide (con’t)

  • VOICE CONDITIONING: Being an “adoring fan” may be tougher than a performer. They sing for a few minutes up to an hour while you consistently cheer for nearly 5 hours – without training.
    • USE YOUR GUT – Learn to push your voice from your core, through your diaphragm and control it escaping from your throat – Look
    • BUFFER – Practice while in your car, on the freeway – not even shower walls  provide enough buffer for those nearby.
Image titled Scream Sing without Damaging Your Voice Step 7

WTF: Wango Tango Fangirl checked out wikihow to Scream Sing without hurting her voice!

 

  • AVOID INJURIES: Avoid training too hard to prevent injuries. Here are the most commonly occurring:
    • 2 LEFT FEET – While you may not know how to Hit the Quan, just stay loose and move any parts of your body as you feel fit!
    • BLEEDING EARS – Increase car radio volume a little each day. Smart people, not old, buffer with foam earplugs.
    • GENERATION GAP – Wider than thigh gaps, navigating this seems trickier. Though every trend comes back around, the new generation still shocks us.  To infiltrate the crowd unnoticed, buy a few accessories at local teen stores. If you blend, youngsters are more likely to behave naturally. You may learn more social and behavioral cues for the next time you try to communicate with them.

  • KNOW BEFORE YOU GO: Be prepared!
    • MUSIC – My daughter think I’ve invented this cool car radio game called Name That Tune where I quickly turn the radio on then off and they blurt out the title and artist of radio songs. While it’s fun for them, my music muscle memory kicks in from back in the days when I could remember any song lyrics but not algebraic equations.
    • FLASHCARDS – Music festivals, especially in Los Angeles, attract celebrities. So another game rises from the pages of tabloid/fashion magazines where my daughter and I verbalize what the star “must be” saying with their photoshoot poses. This will prevent me from calling a cast by the wrong TV show next time we cross paths.

How many can you name?

Coming tomorrow: Attire, Fueling, Medals of completion.

I’D LIKE TO BUY THE WORLD A COKE

All day, everywhere we turn we are subjected to advertisements!  Nowadays, we pay to avoid ads, but I find them amusing! Naturally, with my affinity for mind wandering, I reminisced about the most influential ad in my lifetime (to me).

I grew up singing and wholeheartedly believing that “I’d like to Teach the World to Sing.”  While I still remember the lyrics of the original 1971 Coca-Cola ad, visually, the 1977 Holiday version lingers in my mind.

At my ripe age of 7, it was a comforting, unifying beverage that hugged the whole world.  At that age, when going from my side of the block to the far side of our block seemed like visiting another planet, it was hard to imagine people from anywhere else. The Coke commercial reminded us how wide our boundaries reach yet fostered intimate international connections with just one sip. A variety of people shared and translated this soda into many languages, which was code word for

Love.

This was reinforced everywhere I went. When I was fortunate enough to travel to China, Mexico, Greece, Russia, I believe all of them had Coca-Cola, and in some countries it was safer to drink than the water.

Classic!

Refreshing and Delicious in every language!
Thanks to c7.co for the shot!

I moved a lot as a child, and I longed for the sense of community and belonging that I had to rebuild with every new school.  To me, it was a comforting thought that by drinking this beverage, I’d fit into their community with a seat at the international soda fountain.

I’m guessing a Norman Rockwell – Long time artist for Coca-Cola
For more Coca-Cola conversations, click on the photo

Now, let’s not discount the jingle…  I am a music nut and songs get glued in my head!  I remember song-lyrics or jingles better than anything I’ve been forced to memorize in school. The message was simple – sing it loud: We love Coke, Coke loves you!

Music to our mouth

Found on the Coca-Cola New Zealand Facebook page!

I tried to love Pepsi while briefly working for them yet I celebrated my kids’ milestone of their first soda with their own ice-cold glass Coca-Cola bottle.

I know part of the reason I often have a song in my head and a relentless belief in happy endings is thanks to Coca-Cola. Still working on perfect harmony…

[sip] Aaaah!

Want more? Follow my Pinterest Ad Geek board – pretty!

What was your most influential ad of your lifetime?

DO I LOOKED FLUSHED? MUST BE HAVING A MB20 FLARE UP!

I suffer from an ailment common for women.  It strikes without warning and no vaccine exists.  It causes trembling, racing hearts, sweaty palms, hysteria, weak knees and passing out.  It’s Matchbox Twenty Mania! I’ve kept it under control, but tonight this Facebook post caused a flare up:

Cut another song for the new Matchbox Twenty album

and having a nightcap with Kyle. – Rob Thomas

I learned about Rob from a cool chick bubbling like a giddy schoolgirl.  I didn’t understand why she gushed over a guy that looked like anyone from my school. Nonetheless, when another pal asked me to attend an MB20 concert, I went.

Photo courtesy of Tanya Salvini – fellow fanatic!

Though far from their stage, from the first note, I fell into the lyrics written by this MAN and the energy and heart of their songs.

Here’s what sets them apart:

1)    The band are approachable HOT dudes – so normal anyone could land them!

2)    He’s a man who communicates his feelings well and often!

Thank you Will and Tanya for amazing shots!

3)    He’s married to a beautiful wife whom he adores! That adds meaning to his love songs. We love him in love!

4)    They’re confident, not trying to portray anything but themselves.

Smooth! Obviously my fave!

5)    They bring it on stage! Guys willing to give you their all and love it are HOT!

For more shots of the band, click on the picture!

I instantly became a card-carrying MB20 fan and hysterical behavior ensued.  I saw them many times with many people, so those years blur.

Here are some highlights:

1)    Attending an intimate show at The Troubadour! My friend and I were close enough to touch him!  Our screaming became immortalized when they released that show as an EP.

You can see my friend in the video, lucky girl!

2)    8-months pregnant, I took that EP to the Palace for their DVD release party!  I got all 5 members’ signatures and hoped to leave a vivid memory by giving birth to Roberta Thomasina there!

3)    Seeing MB20 Tape Leno: Left work early to attend Leno with MB20 performing – tantalizing trifecta!

4)    Took my son to their show for his first rock concert!

Thanks for the great shots Tanya!

This represents a slice of my Fanatic Fan years, but now I’m conditioning myself for the next tour.

Share your favorite band (MB20 or other) experiences in the comments  – I’m sure we’ll agree!

*SIGH!*

ELECTRICALLY ACOUSTIC MOMENT – THE ACOUSTIC MOMENT

My kids and I rushed home with a full agenda for the 90 minutes that we’d be home, but the electricity in the air sparked a magic moment that only happened because we slowed long enough to receive the gift. Driving home, I pitched my plan to do laundry while packing their clothes, dangling the carrot offering to let them to pick the carryout to eat in the car if they did a great cleaning their rooms. They usually balk at tight schedules but were excited to see their Dad and family, so they didn’t argue.

I let them hear the music I downloaded last night, including one unique song called “Somebody That I Used to Know” by Gotye. The song found me and takes me on a mental vacation. Its different opener sounds like cartoons tip-toeing into your world. The mood switches to 60’s space-age feel with some of the instruments and spread-out note combos. The song creates a beautiful sunset to their relationship in that you’re glad you witnessed it and look forward to the next one.

Sunsets are the best on the West!

Lately I’ve been trying to extend my son’s comfort zone to loosen him up! When I parked in our long driveway the song still played on my iPhone. I showed my interpretive dancing walk: stepping in double-slow speed to the beat of the tune. I’d step and the rest of that side would follow the wave of movement til my head leaned to that side, and repeat. I retrieved our mail one beat at a time. My son rolled his eyes so hard I heard them hit his brain.

My daughter caught up to me walking in step up our walkway. Out of nowhere she starts perfectly beating the back-beat of the song on her little plastic drum that just happened to be hanging from her neck. I got such sheer joy from the moment that my son became scared that something was wrong with me.

Pixar’s Tin Toy (C) Disney/Pixar

My exuberance may have set his progress back a bit but I loved the moment and couldn’t have dreamed up if I tried. If you see it in a scene someday, it came straight from the pages of my life.

HOT FLASHES – AKA: THE POWER OF RICKY MARTIN

The summer of 1984 we moved from San Diego to a town that originally served as a stagecoach stop between San Diego and Los Angeles. Moving to this po-dunk dustbowl instantly set me into withdrawals for “big city” energy. That summer huge things squeezed my teenage heart: The Outsiders. Wham UK. and Ricky Martin joined Menudo. I forgave them for their Theme Park-esque costumes and feathered hair and instantly ranked Ricky as the cutest one in a Michael Jackson/Jackson 5 sort of way.

Menudo earned extra cuteness points with Ricky

I have always loved anything with a Spanish flair – architecture, clothing, food and music. The romance language set to music sounds so passionate. Even my ex-husband was Quarter Rican. Although being newly married, I dismissed Ricky mostly because I didn’t love his long hair or his soap opera – superficial, I know.

Then the 1998 Grammys audience’s and my hearts stopped when Ricky Martin shook his skin-tight black leather-covered bon bon (hips don’t lie!). Between his tight gray sweater and carrying himself bigger than the cup of life, he instantly won me, and the world, over! Having just started my new job at the record label that put out Ricky’s soap’s soundtrack and finding out that my exes’ aunt was a radio star in Puerto Rico I hoped for a breathtaking introduction some day! I figured on the tiny island, a star that big would glow and if I couldn’t find him myself, I’d follow the auntie who must be familia.

LOL! I think Madonna wanted them both – Mad Men!

For years the speculation about his sexual preference ticked me off. I don’t care what people do in their own lives and it’s not our business. When he’s on stage – he’s larger than life. His powerful message, generous spirit and incredible movements drew me in! I can’t help but dance and my mood improves upon hearing his music – even after the millionth time. I still haven’t met him but I can dream!

Tonight, I got distracted by two Sneak Peek videos for Glee: [one] [two]. I got sucked in by videos which led to iPod downloads. I even downloaded LMFAO’s Sexy and I Know It, which I dislike, because I LOVE his version! That’s the power of Glee productions and Ricky Martin!

Yes, please be my guardian angel!

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