Tag Archives: music

The first time I heard Marianas Trench I was in college, in a film class where we had to make a music video. The song was Beside You and the kid who created the music video was kind of a slacker badass (like picture Danny Zuko as a 2000s era tv/ radio major complete with leather jacket) who came up with a story so beautiful I was openly sobbing by the time it was finished. And we were all shocked by the effort he clearly put into this project. When asked for comments on the video, one girl simply said, “Well… Look at Caroline.” The premise was a young couple in love and one of them dies. Unfortunately, I don’t remember all the details and double unfortunately, the video seems to be gone forever. I even tried to get it from the professor who taught the class. Anyway… it was powerful stuff.

I started off Monday with big ugly tears for the same band. I’m tardy to the party on this- the video is over a year old. But the song showed up on my Spotify this weekend and I haven’t been able to stop listening so I figured I’d check out the video.

Big mistake. Kind of.

Yes, I did cry on the bus on the way to work, but I was also grinning from ear to ear. I probably looked like a loon. The whole video is the band spending money from their video budget on causes that mattered to them. Puppies, grandparents, families in crisis, their own families… Woof. It is beautiful.

But it doesn’t take the budget of a music video to make a difference. This year, rather than do a Salvation Army Angel Tree, which is a wonderful cause, my church has decided to do a blessing tree for the holiday season. It’s kind of a pay it forward idea- grab a simple blessing for you to pass someone off a Christmas tree. Pay for someone’s coffee in line behind you, shovel a neighbor’s snowy driveway, send a letter to a teacher who left and impression on you- things we can all do at little or no cost at a time when folks are already spread thin.

It’s also a time when the world needs a little extra love. It’s absolutely deplorable that we’re becoming desensitized to shootings, violence, acts of terrorism both domestic and abroad. Besides that, the holidays can be hard. People find themselves missing their loved ones, or missing something even if they’re not sure what it is, at time when everyone is supposed to be and expected to be joyous. I myself totally fell apart last year on Christmas Eve missing Candace. Even though I have so much, I’m still entitled to be sad. So are you. So is everyone.

Who do you love, and what will you do for them to show them you care at a time when we all need it most?

 

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Planning a party is rarely a simple matter of logistics. Yes, you have to get all the right people in the right place, at roughly the same time. You know you need to provide them with a few pieces of food to nibble on, as well as a selection of drinks. If you’re going to go big on the decor, then that’s something you need to get ticked off as well.

The above are the basics, however. There’s no doubt you can have a successful party if you just do these things, but you’re also going to run into more than a few problems along the way. The true skill of effective party planning is found in anticipating problems, so when they do arise, you already have a solution in place.

Gold CHEERS Party Cups

So what kind of issues should you anticipate when it comes to planning your next big event?

The Dreaded Drinks Dearth

Few things will kill an atmosphere more effectively than running out of drinks – particularly alcohol – way before the time you’d thought the party would run to. While it’s conceivably possible that you could buy too much alcohol in the planning of a party, most of the time, more is going to be better. Make life easier for yourself by ordering alcohol online so you don’t have to worry about dragging multiple bottles of clanking bags from your car, as well as giving you the chance to get a variety to suit every palette. If you’ve anything left over at the end of the night, you are well stocked for gifts the next time someone’s birthday rolls around.

The Music Maladies

Finding the right music for a party is never going to be easy. Music is one of those things that everyone has an opinion on, but it’s also entirely subjective. What someone considers to be a stone-cold classic, someone else will turn their nose up at.

Thankfully, the internet has got you covered. There are numerous lists available online of songs that everyone knows and loves. While there will always be a few outliers among your guests, for the most part, a playlist of the all-time favorites is going to get the best results.

The Awkward Arguments

Unless your life is like a TV show and everyone already knows one another, then chances are any party you throw is going to involve bringing together a lot of strangers. They’re not strangers to you, of course – but they are to one another. Forgetting this fact can lead to awkward moments, as a group of people suddenly realize they don’t know how to talk to one another.

Worse still is when two people meet for the first time and it’s immediately obvious that they don’t get on. It happens; it’s not fun for anyone involved. That’s where your hosting skills are going to have to be top-notch. At the first sign that anyone is rubbing someone else up the wrong way, you have to be on the ball enough to interject and separate them from one another. A simple: “could you give me a hand in the kitchen?” is usually enough to make the point, and keep tempers well under control!

By following the ideas above, your party planning will go up another gear – and you’ll all have a lot more fun as a result.

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If you take away nothing else from this post, it’s that I am now engaged to the sweetest, most thoughtful amazing best friend fiance ever. In the world. I could not be more ecstatic.

I guess I’ll just start with the fact that I am a total freak. I have been joking fantasizing about a proposal at a We The Kings concert liiiiike since Kendall and I met and decided we would go see them together ASAP. However, when I finally spilled to him that this was my idea for how he should propose to me, he called it trashy and I thought that was the end of it.

A lot of factors went into making Sunday night possible. First of all- my parents somehow kept it a secret. It meant a lot to Kendall and I that he ask their blessings and he even invented a business meeting with his new company to throw me off so he could go to Laytonsville to talk to them. Then, he reached out to my dear friend Dana- she and her daughter Jess have become like family to me since we met in line at Warped Tour years ago. They, through Duncan, We The Kings’ tour manager, got me my all-access pass for Warped Tour this past summer. Dana set things in motion with Duncan AGAIN and somehow the three of them, plus other concert friends Elaine + Becka, didn’t let on all night that this was going to happen. Jess had spoken to the band early in the afternoon and they were all on board- all of the crew as well. There was a disco ball. You guys. A disco ball. All because a gaggle of people worked together to make the night so special.

Apparently there were many moments when I possibly could have figured it out- when Kendall had the ring out (totally missed this), when Duncan invited us backstage (another day another adventure with Jess + Dana), or when they pulled us on stage. I actually didn’t hear what was said so I just ran on the stage when Kendall grabbed me. I heard Travis say, “oh you guys can come up here too,” I though he was talking to Kendall and I and that Dana and Jess were the friends who were supposed to be up there. I froze for a sec thinking, “oh crap we were not actually invited up here.” Then Travis said something along the lines of, “you’re Kendall, right?” and you can actually see my reaction in the video- I knew something was up. I’d met the band several times- Kendall, not before we got on the stage that night.

Then I blacked out. Kendall said things and got down on one knee. I took the ring… and forgot to say yes at first. But yes, yes, yes infinity times yes. I cannot get over the fact that he did this for me. Thank you, my Everything for an unforgettable night. And thank you to Jess, Dana, Duncan, and the whole We The Kings team for helping my love put this together.

Thank you especially to Charles for including us in your vlog! Having my engagement caught for people who couldn’t be there means the world to me! I may or may not be watching it on repeat and crying. The part of the video with the actual proposal starts at 17:43.

I have some other pictures from the night- Jess and Dana actually got me a frame that says “She checked yes!” and I just have to figure out which one to use. It’s kind of funny- I wished that night that I’d been more dressed up or my hair/ makeup situation was better but come Monday, I just didn’t care! I am so grateful for the love that surrounds me and, really, that We The Kings music has brought me. I’m floating right now. I feel like I could keep going but nothing I say could accurately convey the joy I have in my heart right now.

Oh yea… and we met Frankie Muniz?

I love my life. And I can’t wait to spend the rest of it with Kendall.

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It’s Valentine’s Day! A day for reflecting on love, all kinds of love. Friend love, lover love, even unrequited love. Nothing brings out my love feelings, good and bad, like music. Seriously, I have so many emotional attachments to songs it’s absurd. If you know me IRL, you probably know this, but Kendall and I met on OK Cupid. The first thing I noticed were his blue eyes, and then his taste in music. It mirrored mine. We The Kings was on his list. I was smitten before the first message exchange.

Not-quite-a-year later, Kendall and I are living together in harmony. We saw Yellowcard together a little while ago, we’re seeing We The Kings on Sunday, and Simple Plan next month. This punk rock princess found her garage band king. When he’s away for drill or on missions, I update various playlists I’ve made for him to let him know he’s on my mind. We always dance while cooking or cleaning together, and our wedding will probably be Punk Goes Wedding… goes Lion King but that is another subject for another day.

Because music, and especially music about love mean so much to me, I thought I would share with you some of my favorite love songs today. It’s my Valentine’s Day gift to you and I hope you enjoy it. Some are happy, some are sad, some are pensive. They all deal with love in some way, and I do hope you enjoy! I’d love your feedback and I’ll probably be updating this list from time to time.

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Planning your big day won’t have taken the two years or so since you got engaged to your soulmate. In actual fact, most girls plan for their big day from the moment they’re old enough to watch Cinderella and understand that once they meet a handsome prince, they’ll be swept off their feet. Of course, it doesn’t always happen that way. Most of the time, in fact, we have to kiss a fair few frogs before we get to the diamond ring and wedding preparation. While you wait for true loves kiss, you could be daydreaming about the biggest day of your life and the things you want to include. Don’t worry, we all do it – daydreaming and weddings go hand in hand. There are many wishes that brides want to have granted for their wedding day, and some of them may feel unrealistic. They’re not. There is no such thing as an unrealistic wedding wish: if you can afford it, you can have it. So, what are some of the most popular?

Wedding Chalkboard

Arriving In Style:

A lot of brides imagine a huge Bentley or Rolls Royce smoothly escorting them to their wedding venue. For others, it’s a personalized double decker bus for the whole bridal party. Then there are those who love to live the high life and have a helicopter entrance for their wedding day. Brave, bold and blooming exciting!

Making Memories:

When it comes to hiring a wedding Photographer, some brides like something short and snappy – no pun intended. A morning of pictures for the ceremony and that’s it. Others like to go the whole hog for the day and hire a couple of excellent companies to take the photos of the ceremony and the reception. Then there are those who go for a full videographer to make a movie of their wedding. It’s the dream – you can play the most magical day of your life on repeat!

Rock Bands:

Sure, every bride loves to rock a little frosting on her wedding band, but what about actual wedding bands? Most people have seen the scenes from the video for Maroon 5’s hit song ‘Sugar’ where they turned up at people’s weddings to sing and the shocked guests are fantastic. Hiring the perfect wedding band rather than a DJ who plays the same tired and yet timeless songs over and over can be a wish come true for some brides.

Honeymoon Dreaming:

White sands, ocean waves lulling you to sleep and a private butler who brings you cocktails and snacks on tap. Yeah, that’s pretty dreamy. While some like to book a quickie weekender for their honeymoon, some couples save for years for the perfectly sun-kissed honeymoon. It’s the ultimate holiday to welcome you into married life together, so going the whole hog is a must!

 

 

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The above post may contain affiliate links and I may receive compensation if you click on any of the above links and/ or make a purchase from those links. Opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that I love!