All Dressed Up

The first Halloween I remember was the one when I was 6 years old. This doesn’t include borrowed memories, like the ones you get from looking at old family albums, or hearing old family stories. This is the first memory that I authentically pull from my memory banks of a specific Halloween. And even more specifically, the first memorable Halloween costume.

Mine was the year I dressed up as Cinderella. I had the sparkly skirt, a real live diamond tiara (that my Mom made out of tinfoil and cut up cardboard) and shiny blue ballet slippers.   And since I lived in Southern California at the time, I could wear the costume without even a sweater or pair of tights to keep warm. That’s right. As foreign as this may seem to my fellow Canadians, in Southern California we just wore the costume. No jacket over top. No clunky snow boots. No mittens. No toque.

Can you even imagine?  It was just like a movie. (That is a good, fun, family movie. Not the Jamie Lee Curtis kind of Halloween movie). I skipped and danced happily from house to house, enjoying the balmy evening air and the feel of green grass beneath my scantily clad feet.

Fast forward one year. It is the night of Halloween. My family has relocated…. To Prince George. Yeah. I know.

That year I had one wish for Halloween. I wanted to be I Dream Of Jeannie. I imagined myself draped in the gauze and silk, bare midriff, hair all fancy in an elaborate up do. And lots of make up. Maybe even false eye lashes. I imagined myself crossing my arms and nodding my head, just like I Dream of Jeannie, at every house I came to. I even considered converting my bedroom to look like the inside of her bottle, just to stay true to the theme. I had it all figured out.

So imagine my chagrin when my ever practical mother determined that there was no way in H E double hockey sticks that I was going trick or treating wearing next to nothing, outside, at night, in Prince Freezing George. (I am pretty sure the word she used was “freezing”).

Instead, my innovative and super creative mother had saved the Styrofoam packing unit from the amber glass lamps she had bought when we moved in. (yes this was the 70s). This unit was perfectly round, hollow and once she cut a hole for my face and stuck in two pipe cleaners for antenna, it transformed me into a Martian. Plus, she excitedly explained, I could just wear it with my snow suit and boots!

Shocked! Horrified! I railed against the new costume. I whined. I cried. I cajoled even, but to no avail. A grudging compromise was finally reached. I would wear the rotten Martian outfit, but with I Dream of Jeannie make-up. My poor, harried mother agreed, slapped on the blue eyeshadow, rosy blush and pink lipstick, stuck the Martian hat on my head, then hustled me out the door.

The tricking and treating went well for the first little while. But then it began to rain. Soon the rain turned to sleet. Tiny stinging pellets of ice began to hammer down on my Styrofoam head, echoing like ricocheting bullets into the face hole, smashing against my skin and making I Dream of Jeannie run in an oozing mess down my cheeks. The Styrofoam worked just like it does when formed into a nice fat beer cooler, and my ears, cheeks and forehead were soon developing some sort of permafrost. I broke away from the gang I was touring with and began to run toward home, one arm up to shield me from the onslaught of ice bullets. My pillowcase dragged behind me, getting soaked in the muddy ice and a hole was soon formed. By the time I reached home, frozen and in shock, I had about a ½ dozen soggy pieces of candy and 3 very bruised Macintosh apples left in the tattered sack.

Happy Freezing Halloween.

I bet this stuff never happened to I Dream of Jeannie.

 

Originally published by e-Know

 

Connecting with the Angels

Do you believe in Angels? Because they believe in you…

Do you believe in Angels?  Because they believe in you…

Coming this September for 3 consecutive Thursday evenings I will be offering a workshop for all things Angelic.

  • Who are our Angels?
  • How can we communicate with them?
  • How can we invite them to participate more fully in our lives?

We will do Angel meditations, learn the names of our guides, connect with our personal Guardian Angels and become aware of the many ways our Angels are reaching out to us every single day.

AND… I will be doing personal Angel Intuitive Readings for everyone in the class!  WOOHOO!! 🙂

Space is very limited in my cozy little Zen Den, so please CLICK NOW to order:

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OR text/call 778-214-2341 or email me at pastlifetourist@gmail.com to book your spot.

We will be working a lot with the Angel Tarot deck by Doreen Virtue.  If you would like your own set of cards please let me know and I will get some ordered for you.

It Takes a Village

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RodO… photo courtesy of Jasmine Osiowy

“A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.” Henry Brooks Adams

As originally published in e-Know:

Mount Baker Wild Theatre’s spring musical production of the Drowsy Chaperone played May 7th at the Keys City Theatre. For those who have enjoyed the amazing Baker productions for the past many years, they will know this play marked the close of an era. The youngest group of students who had the privilege of working with the late, great Rod Osiowy are getting ready to graduate.

Rod was a special teacher. He believed in expanding and opening the high school’s theatre productions to include the whole community. It was not uncommon to see the chorus or main characters being played by local business people, clergy, and other pillars of society. And Rod encouraged children from the local elementary and middle schools to join the casts. Rod called it stocking the farm team. He knew that the love of theatre, when instilled at a young age, would carry through into the teen years. By the time the children who began performing as young as 5 years old got to high school, they would be seasoned performers, ready for whatever challenge Rod might throw their way.

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RodO and Evan… Photo courtesy of Jasmine Osiowy

Grease, Beauty and the Beast, Jesus Christ Superstar, Anything Goes, Seussical and Les Miserables, just to name a few, Rod Osiowy along with his partner in crime, Musical Director Evan Bueckert managed to create theatrical experiences far exceeding the expectation for a high school production. But more than that, Rod taught each person who worked with him the importance of being a part of the team.

It was a grand tradition. Opening night of each show Rod gave the Village speech. It went something like this:

A high school production is like a village. All sorts of people are part of the village. You have the Mayor and Council members, who look after the townsfolk and make sure that things are fair for everyone. There are the law makers and the ones who enforce them. There are trades people and artisans, builders and business people. All of the townsfolk are vital, important and have their own unique purpose. And of course you have the lovable village idiot (and Rod would point to himself, causing great gales of laughter). The thing about a village is that every person is important and nobody matters more or less than anyone else. We work together for the success of the village and we remember that the energy we bring will affect everyone. Attitudes are contagious, so make sure yours is worth catching.

Important life lessons from Rod Osiowy.

Tessa Charlton who played Mrs. Tottendale in the Drowsy Chaperone recalls: “Rod had a way of making everyone feel special. I loved to be the center of attention but Rod helped facilitate that diva in me in a productive way. Towards the end of one of the rehearsals we had for Beauty and the Beast, Rod approached me and complimented my eye for the number we had just been working on and asked if I’d address the cast with my opinion on what we needed to work on. I felt like the most special kid in the world, even If I was just an 11 year old kid playing a dancing tea cup.”

And Eve Sperling remembers: “He always knew how to make us laugh and he was so easygoing but just strict enough to keep all us hooligan kids under control. He always had a smile on his face and a joke ready, and he remembered everyone’s names, even if they were a small chorus part that to anyone else would be ‘insignificant’.”

The Village metaphor is kept alive and well by the young people who worked with Rod, carrying on a legacy of inclusion and mentorship. Tyrel Hawke, who graduated several years ago, has returned to the area to work as an RN at the Cranbrook & District Hospital. Hawke volunteered as the vocal coach and pianist for the production.

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Tyrel Hawke… photo by Julian Bueckert

“Quite often I’m asked why I volunteer my time for this program, and my answer is pretty simple. During the awkward point of my life I call high school, Rod and Evan took hundreds of hours out of their lives to spend with kids like myself and help us create something amazing. This led to confidence and purpose for me during high school and careers and opportunities ever since. Rod had a way of making each one of us feel special and that we can always try harder to achieve something great. I am forever indebted to Rod, Evan, and the Baker arts program. I’m still stopped occasionally by people saying, ‘aren’t you that Jean Valjean boy?’ ten years after we did Les Mis. I do these shows for the spirit of Rod, my younger self, and these kids that have a lot more drive and dedication than many adults I know.”

Bethany Turcon is the new Drama Teacher at Mount Baker and was the Director of the Drowsy Chaperone. This was Turcon’s first experience as a director and she managed to create a production worthy of all that have come before. Along with Evan Bueckert and Stephanie Tichauer, and a host of other fine and dedicated designers, musicians, technicians and volunteers, Ms. Turcon created another Village, one that lived up to the legacy created by Rod Osiowy.

Everyone should have a teacher as great as Rod Osiowy. Thankfully his legacy lives on in the fine work and dedication of the students and colleagues who carry on in the village he created.