Advertisements

Blog Archives

Austin City Limits: The highlights.

Austin City Limits!

I went to Austin City Limits (ACL) – weekend two – over the weekend, and I still cannot stop thinking about how much fun I had!

Last year, my best friend Sheena came to Austin and we ventured to one day of the festival, both seeing it for the first time. We were there from open to close, and although it was fun, I wasn’t sure if I’d go back.

I’ve been to the Van’s Warped Tour a few times and also to Hangout Fest multiple times and both of those were much more organized and fun, I thought. But when I saw this year’s lineup for ACL – I knew I had to go, and I needed to be there all three days. I used the ACL Fest app to create a schedule and that helped me see all the bands on my list.

Friday

On Friday, I headed to the festival around 3:30, but after a debacle with my Uber driver, I didn’t get into the festival until 5:15 – Khalid was scheduled to start at 5:30, so I was BOOKING it to the Honda stage to see the start of the show.

I made it with time to spare, and he put on a great show. I saw Khalid earlier this year at Red Rocks, but I felt pretty distracted by the venue itself (and the crowd) that seeing him at ACL was a good idea. He played several of the songs from “American Teen”, and also sang “OTW”, “Love Lies”, and “Eastside”… and he also announced that his new EP would drop this Friday, October 19!

Khalid @ Austin City Limits.

Next up was Hozier, who I’ve never seen live, but have listened to plenty. I grabbed some dinner (the other great thing about ACL) and a seat far away so I could eat and listen. If you’re wondering, I got a lobster tostada and chips with green chile queso from Torchy’s – it was delicious!

Hozier also sounded fantastic live, and the place went nuts when they sang “Take Me to Church”. It was impressive.

Next, I knew I had to go to the Silent Disco – Sheena and I went last year and it was my favorite part. If you’ve never been to a Silent Disco before, you get a set of headphones upon entering. There are multiple DJs set up – in this case, three – and they are each playing on a different channel that you can tune into via the headphones.

I danced my legs off for about an hour before I treated myself to an organic strawberry lemonade, watched Paul McCartney perform a few songs, and made my way out of the festival.

Saturday

After getting there so late on Friday, I made an effort to leave a little earlier on Saturday. I got to the festival around 3:20, but it took a little more than an hour to get through the bag check line and scan my wristband.

I still had plenty of time to grab some food – a grilled cheese with fig jam from Burro – before seeing Marion Hill perform, which was a lot of fun.

Lil Wayne @ Austin City Limits.

Then, I headed to see Lil Wayne (the replacement for Childish Gambino) about an hour early – I wanted to get a good spot, which actually ended up being a giant mistake. I was in the middle, crammed in with so many sweaty people… but it was fun to see Lil Wayne (I saw him in New Orleans when he was touring songs from “The Carter III”).

He sang new songs, and took it all the way back to “Go DJ” – one of my favorites.

The headliner that night was Metallica, so I watched a few songs of their set – they sounded great – and there were tons of people there with Metallica shirts on. On my way out, I bought a Khalid shirt.

Sunday

Sunday was the biggest day on my schedule, and I’m not going to lie, I had the most fun. My allergies and a little bit of a cold were hold me down some on Friday and Saturday, but I woke up Sunday feeling much better and I was ready to roll!

I got to the festival around 2:30, in time to see Elle King and grab food (are you noticing a trend here?) – I got a vegan sandwich from Flyrite with tater tots and it was delish. Elle King was also refreshing and I made a mental note to buy some of her music.

Shawn Mendes @ Austin City Limits

Next up was Janelle Monae – I had her on my list as a “hope to see” her, but I ended up LOVING her performance and watched every minute of it! She sang all of her hit songs, complete with choreography and fun costumes. I was impressed. She ended her performance reminding everyone to vote, and said, “We’re about to change the mother fucking world!” Yes!!!!

And then it was the biggie: Shawn Mendes. He was the whole reason I bought a ticket for weekend two – and wow was that a great decision. I found a spot in the middle of the crowd, and he sounded fantastic! He sang some radio favorites, including “Stitches”, “Lost in Japan”, and “Treat You Better”, along with two cover songs. He even ran into the crowd (heavily surrounded by security, of course) and said he’s always wanted to play ACL. I loved it, and bought some of the songs I didn’t have once I got home.

Closing the night was Travis Scott, and he brought Shaq on stage – the crowd was excited and confused all at once. Many of his songs had gunshot sound effects, which was alarming, and I immediately left after hearing what I wanted to. I was surprised more people didn’t leave – I didn’t think artists were doing that anymore, and even though I am against editing expression, I didn’t feel comfortable hearing those sounds in a festival atmosphere. I don’t think I would have been able to tell if it was real or not.

The Silent Disco @ Austin City Limits.

All in all though, it was a fantastic weekend – so much fun and so much great food and music. It really reminded me why so many people flock from all over to attend their favorite festivals. We need events like these to feel free – free to have fun and express ourselves. It’s also a reminder of how great places can be – I felt really lucky to live Austin, a city that embraces creativity and progressive causes. I really needed those reminders, and I’ve been listening to music ever since I left Zilker Park. It truly was good for my soul.

Advertisements

Staycation Diaries: That’s a wrap!

It’s oooovvverrrrrr.

Okay… it’s almost 10pm on a Sunday night, and it’s about to be official: the end of my Staycation.

I’m definitely savoring these last few moments before reality hits when my alarm goes off at 6:30 tomorrow – I cooked a meal (I’ll be taking the leftovers for lunch tomorrow), I spent three hours on the patio with Blanche and a book, I soaked in the tub, and am currently in bed watching TV while I type.

On Friday, I felt this urge to be productive: I had freelance work to do, laundry to do, groceries to get, and I had an evening rehearsal. I also needed to get to bed early because the shoot for the music video was at 6:30 Saturday morning.

But, at the advice of a friend, I decided to do some work, but also have a little fun. So, I did finish my laundry and about an hour’s-worth of freelance, but I also took myself to Taco Shack for lunch (that was my first time there) and I took an afternoon nap before my evening rehearsal.

I didn’t make it to bed early – I stayed up until midnight talking on the phone – and then I still had to shower and do ALL the face/lip/eye masks… so it was at least 1am before I went to bed, and I got up at 4:30 to do my hair and makeup and make it to Bull Creek by 6:30.

I was soooo nervous about the shoot – there were parts of the dance I was less-confident about, and I was also worried about it being outside, and hot… but honestly, it was a lot of fun. All of us worked really hard and I think it will be a great video – it premiers July 29!

The shoot wrapped at 10:00 am, and I felt like I’d already lived an entire DAY. But it was starting to rain and I was exhausted, so I immediately came home, took a shower, and got into bed to binge season 3 of “The OC”.

I actually took a three-hour nap, but then I watched several episodes, hit up the grocery store, and was still in bed early.

I woke up this morning so, so sore. Dancing outdoors, on a picnic table, jumping off rocks, and skipping through the river took a toll on me!

This morning, I got up and got ready for a brunch I’d had on my calendar for awhile. A woman I met through dance was hosting a brunch with all of the creative women she knew.

Honestly, things like this make me a little nervous – I knew I wasn’t going to know many people aside from the hostess, and I wasn’t sure what to expect. I could have easily stayed in bed, but who knew – maybe it would be great.

And it WAS. It was about 10 women, and we went around the table explaining all of the things we do and it was so neat to hear how different, yet similar we all were. It’s really cool (and comforting) to meet people who are dabbling in new things, facing fears, starting new businesses, and overall just being awesome women!

I am really excited to have possibly met some new friends, and to try new classes and hopefully go to more brunches with these ladies! I felt like it was just what I needed after a draining few months at the office.

When I got home from brunch, I really just wanted to continue to abandon all responsibilities and sit on the patio with a book – so I did exactly that. I went IN, too – I laid a blanket down, laid on a pillow, and read outside with Blanche for hours! It was really nice.

In general, I’m really sad that my Staycation is over. It was really nice to be able to have a whole week all to myself. But on the other hand, I felt like I was still pretty busy during the week, and it was a huge reminder of all the things I’ve got going on – which, on any other day, I would tell you is a great thing, but when you need a rest, it’s nearly impossible to put your entire life on hold.

I’m a firm believer that Newton’s First Law of Motion: a body in motion, stays in motion – applies to life as well. When I’m at work during the week, it’s easier for me to stay moving, go to dance after work, get freelance done, eat healthy, etc. But when I’m on vacation… I’m a slug (relatively speaking).

That’s not a bash to slugs; I also wanted to say that this week was a reminder of just how important it is to take a break, rest, step away. Even if it’s just for an hour, for a day, or whatever you have, you owe it to yourself to rest and restore, and you’ll be a better person for it.

So, I’m wrapping up this Staycation (I’m still going to stay up and read a little), but I’ve decided I’m going to stretch these vibes into the weeks coming. I’ve already booked a facial for Saturday morning, and I’m going to treat myself to meals at restaurants I’ve never been to much more often.

#StaycationForLife

Yes: ‘Dance Squad’ & Mayer Snaps.

The LA Clippers dance team has their own show on E!

The LA Clippers dance team has their own show on E!

Is it just me or is Tuesday night TV pretty much as good as it gets? Probably just me, given that I’m a complete TV junkie.

While I’m still pretty wrapped up in “The People vs. O.J. Simpson”, and admittedly, “The Voice”, last Tuesday E! premiered “LA Clippers Dance Squad”, as in a completely behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like to be a member of a professional dance team.

Hells-to-the-yes.

I have pretty much always dreamed of being on a dance team in some form or fashion, so watching this is the best of both worlds: I get to live vicariously through the young, hardworking dancers, and I can do it from the comfort of my bed. What more could a girl ask for?

The first episode was a good introduction to a few of the team members as they went through auditions, and you also get a good look at the Clippers Spirit’s new Creative Director, Petra Pope, and she means BUSINESS.

From TVseriesfinale.com: “Petra has an extensive resume in pro basketball, having led dance teams of the NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets in the past. She’s now moved back to Los Angeles to revamp the Clippers’ dance squad and take it to the next level.”

As far as team members, there are 20 girls to start, and it seems like some of them may get clipped (ha, punny) as the season continues. My favorite girl is most definitely Hannah, as she’s from Louisiana and left everything behind (including a long-term boyfriend) to pursue her dreams in Los Angeles. Go girl!

I also like Savannah – she’s that Tennessee cool girl I aspire to be in my next life. Some of the show is simply footage from practice (which I enjoy because I love dance practice), but other parts of the show are beautiful shots of L.A. (d-i-e), and of course, adventures and drama these girls get into. Three of them are roommates, so that should be interesting.

On tonight’s episode, it looks like Petra makes a *SHOCKING* decision for co-captain and everyone is pissed! Eeeek! The show airs Tuesday nights on E! at 10 p.m. EST.

So, I know I’ve talked about John Mayer being on SnapChat before, and just to give you an update, he still hasn’t approved ANY of my Snaps yet, but I’m going to persevere!

Regardless, I have still been watching his snap story… and let’s just say that his cute little snaps are only making me like him more.

Hiiii...

Hiiii…

About 75% of the snaps are of course, him playing music or spending time backstage as he is currently on tour with Dead & Company.

But the other 25% of his snaps are absolute nonsense and brain-dumping; i.e. what we know John Mayer to do best, aside from untouched guitar talent.

He talks a lot about making social media personal again, using snapchat for selfies, and his theories on adults owning Pedialyte.

But perhaps my favorite snaps are of him, hand washing his white t-shirts in his marble sink (which has gold hardware, mind you).

Why do I love this so much? Probably because it shows his domesticated side, and his dedication to white shirts. He could very well pay someone to hand wash his seven white shirts, but no, he does it himself, and even hangs each one on a drying rack.

What is my weakness? White shirts and denim. D E A R G O D.

I would actually pay him to hand wash his white shirts. And I would also sit and watch them dry for four hours, just to make sure nothing happened to them. And then I would die happy.

#LifeGoals

Dreaming of (becoming) Britney.

The Queen.

The Queen.

A few weeks ago, a coworker headed to Vegas for the weekend to see Britney Spears at Planet Hollywood. I was SO jealous…and couldn’t wait to hear all about it come Monday.

Since Britney debuted with “Baby One More Time,” I’ve been a huge fan. When she took over MTV in her school girl uniform, I was in high school, and on the dance team — I wanted nothing more than to dance like her.

I went as her for Halloween, I attempted to get my hair cut like hers, I was inspired by her fashion sense, and I even did 500 sit ups every day, because… well, that’s what she did. And you can’t argue with her body; she looks fantastic!

I think all Britney fans can agree, that we’ll forgive her for that whole Kevin Federline f*ck up, and we kind of get the meltdown thing. Shit happens.

What’s important is that now she’s completely back, and living large in Vegas. My coworker’s trip got me thinking — how awesome does Britney have it?

For an artist like her, meaning one who had a ton of hits but isn’t producing new material currently, she’s got a pretty awesome setup. She’s got a contract in Vegas, puts on a one-hour show nearly every night, lives in the Planet Hollywood hotel, and gets a fat paycheck.

I was reading an article a few months ago about her workout regimen (on top of her regular performances), and she mentioned that she loves eating sushi regularly — which I’m sure is delivered right to her hotel door from Koi.

So freaking jealous.

On top of all this awesomeness, let’s face facts, Britney Spears could date any guy she wanted. And that is most certainly a power I want to have. I realize that’s an incredibly superficial wish and there’s probably a few guys out there that aren’t interested in her… or are there?

Now that her contract is extended, I’ve got more of a chance to get to Vegas and see her show (I saw her a few times in concert when I was in high school), but I’m sure it’s nothing quite like the Vegas show.

Anyone been to the show? I’d love to hear the details!