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I'm in a bit of a grump space right now, and I don't like posting when I'm feeling this way. Work is really stressful, I'm having major issues with my shoulder (the OTHER one, this time, GAH), I'm finding it very difficult to be a parent right now, and I can't stop checking the news for the latest political horrors being perpetrated in the US. It's like watching a train wreck only all the potential victims are us.

I got an email the other day that our choir start date has been pushed back at least 2 weeks because they haven't succeeded in finding replacement choir leaders for us yet. Plus, it's that kind of cold, raw, wet weather that is just depressing, and it's not even February yet. *suck*

Sitting at the computer aggravates my shoulder to no end, and guess what I do all day long? I had a massage today and it felt better for about 10 minutes. Now it hurts as much as it did before.

I'm once again the VP Membership for the AWC. The woman who was doing it, who took over for me a year and a half ago, couldn't manage the job to the extent it requires, and apparently hadn't been managing for a very long time, despite offers of help and back up from me and others on the board. I think she probably felt I was a control freak, but under her watch we dropped to below 100 members down from the over 200 there were when I left that position. Some of the people who had pending registrations when she officially quit had been waiting since September and had never even been contacted. :( Three of them have now been called, talked to and activated and the other 2 have been emailed and responded to. And 2 former members rejoined at the meeting last night, so we're on our way back up.

Since I took over VP Membership, I proposed that one of the women who has been co-secretary take over Editor for me, and she agreed, so that worked out well. It would be nice for this to be a good AWC year considering it's the 20th anniversary of the club's founding this year, and it's already had a rocky start, since with membership so low, we haven't had our usual income and that has meant several cost-cutting measures like charging for some activities that have been free for several years, canceling meetings to save on hotel conference room costs, removing the raffle gift from the meetings we DO have, and stopping the free sandwiches we were providing as well (free to the attendees, not the club).

On Saturday, I sang, with 5 other women from my department at work, in a huge gospel fest at the new concert hall in Malmö. We were part of 1100-member choir, which was pretty impressive. We FILLED the hall. In fact, we were more people singing than there were in the audience. It was a very long, intense day. I left the house at 7:30 a.m., picked up my colleague Anette and we got to Malmö at 8 a.m....early but we weren't sure of where to park and all so we figured it was better than being late.

We sang ALL day, practicing the songs we had been learning on our own, plus a few brand new ones that we learned during the course of the day. There were several directors, some who only directed one song, and three guest artists, including 2 from America: Dr. Carl Hall, a gospel singer and director from Atlanta and Aaron Marcellus who was in American Idol and Stomp. The other one was Leila Adéle, a Swedish singer who has been in Melodifestivalen and Idol.

Of the 9 songs I memorized by listening to them on CD in the car for the last 2 months, we sang 5, plus the 2 new ones I mentioned, plus back-up on the solo songs that the guest artists did. We performed in 2 concerts in the evening, the first at 6 p.m. where our half of the choir was up in the balconies and the second at 8 p.m. where we were on the stage.

You can see photos and videos here.

Anders and the kids came to the second show, the one where I was actually on the state but they couldn't see much of me as I was almost in the center, in the second row, and was hidden from their view by the directors every time. Karin sang along with all the songs, and said afterward, "Why didn't you let me join in, too?" When I laughed and said I didn't think she would have been interested, she exclaimed, "Well, I want to do it next time!" Hahaa! I don't care that much for gospel, to be honest...I felt sort of dragged into it by my colleagues, but it WAS fun, and we sang other songs that weren't really gospel, too, so all in all, I think I'd do it again.

I was bummed, however, that all the women's marches were the same day as the gospel fest, which meant I couldn't join in. Several of my friends went to Copenhagen for the march there, and I would have loved to have participated. I've really enjoyed seeing all the pictures and videos from the marches all around the world, and all the witty signs everyone had. But I hope that all of these people who are suddenly finding their voice really understand that just marching is NOT enough.

Things to look forward to: Spring, Pie Night, the end of Kick Off season at work
mood: grumpy
music: Oingo Boingo—We Close Our Eyes


Yay for singing and YAY for Karin wanting to join in! I cant get my two to do anything fun..... Well... they are pretty busy. I also did not partcipate in the marches but have been checking out all the signs as well. PIE night!!! We had Vegetable (for Danely) and Chicken pot pie for us the day before I made them both from scratch and they were pretty good!! The chicken one had no leftovers. We did however have them the day before national pie day and then we had the apple pie crumble the day after..... we tried.....

I know you will get that membership right back up....
Love Seester

Your kids are crazy busy compared to mine! Well, compared to Martin, anyway. :D And Karin has a whole year before she has to decide about participating in gospel fest again. I think you should come over for PIE NIGHT!!

Wow, 1100 people!! That's impressive!

It was! Crazy impressive sound!

From Megsie

Holy cow! That is a big choir! I bet it was a long fun day. I also think that it is great that Karin wants to do it with you.

I didn't march with my legs, only with my heart. My mom had surgery on Thursday, so I was checking her out of the hospital that day. Seeing all of the posts on Facebook brought tears to my eyes. I agree that it will take more than marching, but I am hopeful that something good will come of it. I don't really know if it will or not, but that is what hope is made of. It is devastating have this happening...I am so sad that my country feels like it stopped representing me. I wonder if that is how the other side has felt for the last 8 years, and how we can be so different and divided. I think the lack of communication is part of it, but I am just as guilty. I can't really have honest, frank conversations with my own family about politics. It is awful.

Wow. Sorry. I guess I just needed to vent there. I almost deleted, but I guess I will leave it, in case anyone else feels the same.

Re: From Megsie

I hope your mom is recovering well from her surgery. And you can always vent here, you are welcome! I would never want you to delete what you need to say.

Ouch, ouch on the shoulder. I hope it is something that can be fixed as there is nothing more depressing and dispiriting than chronic pain.


Goodness on the AWC membership! How disappointing when people take on a role, don't do it properly nor say anything until you suddenly discover that it's not working. I hope you can turn it around as it would be sad if it folded after all the hard work you've put in over the years and the fact that it fufills such a service to people new to Sweden. It's a pity that more of them don't "give back" to the organisation that helped them in the beginning.

The choir sounds terrific! That is an emormous choir - I'm glad that it all went so well. How cool that Karin was inspired to join in as well.

The marches have been incredible. I do hope they keep that momentum for change going as some of the decisions I've seen being made this week are rather scary.

I hope so, too, because frankly, I don't think marches and writing postcards are going to make an iota of difference.

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