Thoughts About Friendship.

Before I start work I saw this quote from Gwyneth Paltrow: “As you get older, you choose friends based on not only what feels resonant and warm but if they’re bringing something to your life. My women friends are incredibly intelligent. There’s no posturing, no competition. Especially in Los Angeles, I see pockets of friends who are very competitive, and I think, What is the point? I would rather be alone in bed with a book than have a girlfriend who is like that.”

I actually agree with her on that one. Maybe it’s because I’m an introvert (so is she). I don’t feel like that means be a cow, but choose your friends wisely. I love my friends, all of them. They are all my friends for a reason. The other thing to keep in mind is what you bring to their lives as it is for us to give AND take, not just take or not just give.

I am typing this now one day after I started it. This morning I learned that one of my good friends passed away earlier in the day. It’s quite frankly not been a good day. I knew it could still happen after the original news she wasn’t doing well, but I hoped and prayed she would recover. She didn’t and that is ok. She is free from her chains and all that held her down. She is in God’s hands and what better place to be than there. So that happened on the other side of the world. The one thing I do know is that good will come from it. Maybe more people will get help for their addictions of alcohol or drugs before it is too late. am I sad? Of course. I will probably be for a few days at least. I will still laugh and cry and remember her but I won’t stop living because she is gone. If anything I will try to live more and stronger. We all should. It’s cliche to say live every day like it’s your last or live with no regrets, but in the end isn’t it true? Do you want to go tomorrow knowing you didn’t do what you intended or say all the things you needed to say? Do you want people to know how much you care about them? It’s harder for introverts, this is experience talking. Sometimes we just figure people know because they are our friends and so that obviously means we care so we don’t always say it, or is that just me?

Last week we filmed three short films for the interns. I really love being on set no matter how tired or upset I am (that was when I found out my friend was not doing well and she nearly died then). Granted on the one day we filmed past midnight I was gone mentally by the end. We non equipment hindered crew got to be extras, so that was 5 hours of high energy pretending to dance while I was being the assistant director. Whew! It was fun but by 11 we were all definitely done in. One of the extras fell asleep on the floor and I was slurring my speech. Yet, I would do it again in a heartbeat.

So while I haven’t been writing every week like I want to I think this is now up to date. I hope to have another update sooner rather than later. Love you all.

New Year, New Stuff and Things

There have been people talking a lot about the new year and what that looks like. Some of it is the usual “I’m going to eat better and exercise.” I’ll just interject here and say that isn’t me. *continues to eat Cheezies* People look at it as a clean slate of a whole big chunk of time. Some come up with words that they want to be their year (like grace). I don’t know if it’s a product of my age but I see the new year as just another number change. So the last number in the ticking changes, but does your life really change? Does it really affect your life?

I don’t know if it’s a product of the depression, but I find every day is an open segment of time that you have set things you need to do and the rest of the time, and how you deal with those set things, is wide open and up to you. Is it nice to have a focus for the year? Maybe, but having been almost dead once or twice and suicidal with the depression (not anymore, even if the thoughts are there, don’t worry) I don’t think in chunks of time that are that long too much because so much can change. Would I love to have long term ideals? Absolutely. There are things in life I want that are definitely long term, but I have to live in the now until those two time frames collide. Why wait for the long term when all you are guaranteed is now? The old saying of “Why put off to tomorrow what you can do today.” sounds like an anti-procrastination tool. It is, you should do your annoying icky homework now instead of tomorrow or the last minute, it’s called effective time management. It also is your future though. If you don’t do it now when will you do it? Someday? When is that? 1 year? 5 years? 20 years? Eventually the time has passed and you think “Why didn’t I do that sooner?” There are experiences you have now missed out on, people you have missed out on. It doesn’t even have to be a major thing, it can be small things. Small things are sometimes the best things in my opinion. Like the green of a tree against a blue sky (which I stared at on lunch). Why not make it a point to stop and really look at a mundane little everyday thing and really appreciate it. I’ve been taking my crochet on the train. I have had a few conversations because of it, and it’s been great. Talking to people I wouldn’t normally with no pressure but maybe even a common thing.

So why not take that little day trip to a lake on a day off. Or that coffee with a friend? There’s no excuses. You don’t have time? Make time because you don’t know how much time anyone really has left. I know all too well how hard it is to make time with my energy meter needing to be constantly watched so I don’t go off the deep end. Some days even sending a quick hi to a friend feels daunting. Blogging is daunting, mundane paperwork is always daunting. I want to be doing stuff that involves my creativity but there is the balance that needs to be kept.

Some days I have nothing to say and others I have a lot, lol. I still haven’t done a proper Star Wars or The Revenant review or even really updated what we’ve been up to here. Another time though. This time is about the time you have and what you do with it. New Year’s Day is just another day. Each day should be deliberate. It’s always a choice, what you do, who you talk to, what drives you, to complete what you need to complete or let something else get done instead. Then live with the actions of those choices.

So now I have to go get food. I will have to write what is actually actively going on here another time.

I Should Be Engaged.

Worth reading.

Duly Noted.

I want to be engaged this year. As of yesterday I’ve been on this earth for more than twenty-three years, and I think it’s about time for me to be engaged.

I’ve been asking people on my Home Team what one word they want to hold true for 2016, and when the question was finally reciprocated by my friend Sanford, I couldn’t come up with anything. I hadn’t found one that quite fit just yet.

I would  say seemingly meaningful words aloud to see if their meanings would hold any significance for what I want this next year to be.

I rustled up words like depth or rest or value and announced them to myself in the car or in the shower or on my walk to work. Nothing was clicking.

Until I drove to Joshua Tree yesterday morning, and that’s when a word so unexpected was whispered into the silence…

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The End of December

It is the last day of December and I realized I was so busy having fun I forgot to update here. Ok, it wasn’t all fun and games. I had 2 weeks vacation from Dec. 7 to Dec 21. Then of course it was Christmas Eve through Boxing Day weekend. So I have only worked 6 days this month really. Work was interesting because it was finishing up painting etc in the community room. So that meant up a ladder painting a ceiling in the back of the room. Then it was back to the office and read scripts, clean up the place, work on assigned projects. The last couple of days of my vacation was moving rooms and cleaning the old one. It’s nice not to be on the top bunk of a bunk bed. My roommate is staying the same and she is currently visiting her boyfriend in Canada. So the last month I have pretty much been alone in the room or not in the room.

Vacation was relaxing, as it needed to be. I went to the museum, since the original plans for a 2 week road trip fell through, and the art galleries. I watched In the Heart of the Sea. I watched The Dressmaker, an Australian film with Kate Winslet, with my friend Natasha. I loved the film. Natasha even made sure I went to Byron Bay and we saw more wildlife than she’d seen at one time there. We saw a snake (the first one I’ve seen here), 2 stingrays, 2 sharks, a pod of dolphins, then a solo dolphin that rode a wave and jumped and spun. We also saw a huge bearded dragon. We went swimming at Byron, not for long since she had to get back to get to work, but it was beautiful and a joyous moment. I swam with a fish but I don’t know what kind. It was just hanging out by me.

The weekend before that one Hannah M and I went up to visit her aunt and uncle who were house-sitting. It was a beautiful house with a pool and we went to the beach one day as well. It was nice and relaxing even with kids around. They were good kids, the youngest is under a year and we looked after them one night while the parents went out. She screamed and screamed, as they do, and I managed to get her to sleep. Phew. Before we went there though we went to Hannah’s house for one night and ate M&M’s while watching all 4 hours of BBC North & South followed by the entire first series of Broadchurch. My filmmaker brain decided who it was that was the killer and it was right. Woo, I learned! Ha ha. I really did have a great vacation.

The midnight showings of the new Star Wars were packed. I went with one of the guys from the office and I was so into it I didn’t feel tired. I really enjoyed it and thought about it way too much. So now I have everything there is to know for sure figured out (I’ve seen it 3 times now) and feel like a kid fascinated by it once again. I know it isn’t perfect and people that complain that it follows the same “story” as the original need to read up on the Hero’s Journey (the basic story format) which is followed to a t by the original, the second one lost a bit of that format, but in general it is mostly following that as well. So it makes sense that there would be the same general outline as well as giving the fans the bunch of callbacks to the original, almost too many though. So yeah, not perfect but then Star Wars never was.

I haven’t really thought about this year past and what next year might bring. It’s just one day after another as time marches on really. You wake up, you do life, you eat, you sleep, then do it all over again. So now that I’m thinking about it this year is full of things I never thought would happen. Working on films, going back to Australia for longer, quitting my job, new Star Wars (no really, this Gen-Xer never thought that the continuation would ever happen…ever), leaving the family and cats, leaving the friends. It’s been a long hard walk the last year and a half, even 2 years. Fighting clinical depression every day and trying to do the normal things regular people can do (and then some) without crashing. There’s been a few times come close but no crashes and no doing anything bad. God has been faithful and I have to watch that I don’t overstretch. I know He has been teaching me things, but I can’t for the life of me figure out how to put whatever that is into words. I’m at an age now where I do more of the teaching the younger ones and trying to learn from their youthful exuberance. Ha ha. I’m not calling myself old, even though sometimes I joke about being too old for this (but that is more a movie reference that makes me laugh than anything), but realizing that experience in life has taught me and I need to pass that on while gaining new experiences.

So that leads up to 2016 in 7 1/2 hours. I honestly haven’t thought about what I want the next year to look like, or what might happen. There are some things I do know, like I will finally work on a feature film and staff the next SDF, and Star Wars Rogue 1 comes out (but that is the only movie I’m mentioning because there as so many, lol). Other than that though, there is so many possibilities for what can happen that there is no point in trying to think of what direction to make it go in, because that is not up to me. That is up to God. So some things for me personally that I need to make sure I do in the upcoming year: take a day off if I need to so I don’t sink. Mostly I am ok, but some days I should stay in bed like my body tells me to. It’s not like “Oh, I’m so tired I just want to stay in bed. Yawn.” It’s more like “The sun is too bright. Everything hurts. Don’t talk to me people. I hurt inside for no reason. I need to not move today even if I want to.” Another one is make sure I remember vitamins and eating. Be social more, but not so much that it is bad for me. Take time off for me to regenerate, make sure it is solitary as well with no interruptions. Basically a lot more self- care so I don’t crash and burn, especially with the film coming up. Read more. Watch and learn from more films (I just really really want to see Ex Machina right this minute). More God time. That’s all I can think of right now though. There are probably other things but they just aren’t coming to me, or even feasible. Although I do want to cross off some of my bucket list in the next year, in case I go back to Canada and don’t come back here (not sure about that one yet).

Film related things though. Well, next year is working on the film. I want/need to write more, but that requires solitude or I just get distracted from letting my brain go. I need to finish the last film before I make another one, but I want to make another one. I don’t know. It’s the end of the work day/week and I’m hungry so my brain is done for the day, lol.

I want to wish everyone a happy new year. I hope you all have a great night on the eve of it, stay safe and enjoy. Love you guys.

The Importance of Telling Your Story: Depression

Yep yep and yep.

The Oxytocin Chronicles

DISCLAIMER: So, heads up, this video was going to suck a lot less UNTIL I dropped my phone into a vat of soap and grease at work and lost my background video and commentary.

Also BOTH my “professional sources” never emailed me back/couldn’t make it. So shame on me for procrastination nation, and shame on fast food for just being a horrendous working environment in general. Moving on.

Screen Shot 2015-12-01 at 1.42.52 PM what comes up when you search “depression clipart.” helping the stigma. much?

Depression. There is a stigma behind it. You’ve seen the memes showing a dark shadow following you around, or the images of cuts across wrists and mascara running down faces. But is that what depression really is?

Apparently not. Actually, depression is lurking in corners of things we may think are quite ordinary. According to this article, entitled 5 Uncommon Signs of Depression, some normal, but often overlooked signs…

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Generation Cry Baby: Why Millennials Are a F**king Joke

Oh snap. I like the side note part 2. I try not to fall back on my brain sickness as an excuse, although there does reach a point where you need to peace out and go do some self care, but there is this thing I learned called no excuses. No one is perfect, people mess up or fall down, but at least trying to live a proper functional life as best as you can day in and day out and hope people forgive you when you have a bad day where you just need to stop and turn into a whining baby for a bit. Also, there is swearing, just so you know.

The Oxytocin Chronicles

We’re raising a generation of pussies. There. I said it.

imgres-1

When I was a junior in high school, I had the most amazing AP English teacher. Her name was Ms. Wei. She prefaced the class by saying that she would grade us fairly, and that these grades would not always be A’s.

“I get that you and your parents all think you all are ‘special snowflakes,’ but I will grade you based on your writing, and if your parents email me complaining about these grades, I will ignore them.”

Now Ms. Wei was a little blunt for some (I freaking adored that woman, and I don’t know anyone who didn’t), but she brought up a good point.

Millennials: your parents won’t say it, and your peers won’t say it because it seems every little thing is sending you all to a therapist because you’re just sooooooo victimized, but

Get. The…

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Yikes.

Things got really busy, so sorry for not updating. First it was the first shooting week. I drove a lot for that and really enjoyed it. It went pretty well for the most part. There is always something, especially when you are learning. The first projects turned out really well for first projects. It was really cool to watch. Then we had a couple of weeks in between where there was editing, us staff watching footage and rough cuts, more script advising the students, greenlight (giving the ok to film) meetings for the final films, a 48 hour film project, stunts lessons (so much fun), TAA work, BLS work. Yep, that was just up until the final shooting week 2 weeks ago. On that week I drove as well and we renovated the office. Basically we took out a wall, put in a different wall in a different spot, made desks, painted, etc. All from scratch by ourselves. It was so awesome. I loved taking out the one wall, obviously. Then framing the new wall. I got to do some sanding on the desks and screwing things together. I also filled the holes on the desk and painted the office wall. I helped put in the desks (which are screwed to the wall). There are a lot of pictures, so I’ll put some here and in the next news letter.

After that was the last week of school and then the grad. We have all had a busy week finishing up the grading of papers and films as well as making sure we were ready for the end of school and grad. Grad was fun. We set up the community room and screened all of the student films. The last few days (since Saturday and it is now Tuesday) have been airport runs, goodbyes, paperwork, cleaning, and trying to rest where possible. All in all it has been crazy, but good. TAA work is so close to being done it’s gotten annoying, BLS work is another entity that needs to be done asap. Hopefully I will get a 2 week break right before Christmas. I’m not sure yet if it’s 100% certain yet.

My first school of staffing is now done. On to the internship of the last set of grads, pre-production, film production, post-production, and then the second school to staff. I am loving it.

Prayer requests:

We are still having issues with Jason’s visa, so please keep praying for that.

I need at least $300/month more in support to be able to have a roof and food as well as medication etc. Only the necessities, which is actually a nice way to live (only what you absolutely need). It takes some of the pressure off of trying to compare yourself to the neighbours and compete for who has the best stuff that they don’t need.

Thanks everyone. Love you all. Hilary

Minion inspired scarf – a crochet pattern for you

This could be fun to make.

Ryckmania

Recently I was asked to make scarves to match the minion hats I had crocheted before Christmas. I had never made a scarf before but I can never turn down a challenge. I looked for inspiration and in the end they turned out ADORABLE! As in I-want-one-for-myself adorable! Each has their own little personality and they are just too cute for words! I would love to share how I made it with you all :) I have  never written a pattern before, I struggle just FOLLOWING patterns, so bear with me ;)

So here’s what they look like

Image

Materials I used:

5.5mm hook

Yellow, blue, black yarn for the scarf and white, brown and grey for the eyes/mouth. I used Red heart ‘with love’ yellow yarn, it is so soft, it is my favorite. The rest was Bernat brand.

yarn needle

Scissors

And I can’t forget the ridiculous amount of…

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Ottawa psych student’s app to help ‘thousands’ with anxiety, depression

What a great idea.

Ottawa Citizen

Jeff Perron wants to help more people than he ever could all by himself.

The Ottawa man finished an undergrad in psychology, earned a master’s in business administration and found work in human resources. He thought that would be his career.

But he felt like he wasn’t doing enough.

“I want to do something that helps people,” said Perron, 29. “It was a good job, I enjoyed it, but at the end of the day I felt like I was a middleman between actually getting people some kind of help.”

So, he returned to school for a PhD in clinical psychology so he could work face-to-face with patients coping with depression, anxiety and other mental health problems.

Then, frustrated by a lack of accessible services for depression and anxiety patients and spurred by years’ worth of existing research in web-based education in cognitive behavioural therapy, Perron started working on an…

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Week 10

Here we are 10 weeks into the school. Last week we had 2 days of stunts, which was awesome. Kyal taught us how to fall and roll properly and fake punch and kick etc. Good times. Due to my neck I couldn’t do the rolls but fake punching people was fun. I confess, I did do a “This is Sparta!” moment and “kicked” the person I was fake fighting. Good times. Then the day before my birthday, the day we were supposed to start making a film, I slipped on the floor and sprained my ankle as well as bruised my foot something terrible. It still hurts, but it’s better than it was. I had a lot of people praying for it so that is good because I really feel like it would have been worse if they hadn’t.

Then we filmed and I got to be an extra, as a few different bodies in a pool. Different times and it was hard to tell because you couldn’t see my face. It was fun. I got to be in a pool for about 20 minutes on my birthday so yay!. The film turned out ok so it was so worth it. the best part was taking the photos for the props as we took stalker pictures of the actor and the other 2 crew members that were bodies as well. So much fun. I don’t know if/when it will be available to view.

I actually can drive quite confidently in Australia now, and in city traffic. It’s like I’ve always driven on this side of the road. First shooting week went well. Everyone did a good job on their films from what I can see. I was one of the drivers and I was tired as I got the early morning runs, but it was so much fun.

The weekend wasn’t anything major, mostly resting watching Netflix to relax from the previous 3 weeks. Final shooting week is next week and then there is one more week before Grad. It’s gone so fast. I can’t remember if my school felt this fast. Still, it is good. The script I am advising on is a story that needs to be told and it isn’t an easy one. I’m super excited to see how it plays out.

Anyways, I need to get some food so I can eat before the evening session. I will try to post the black and white picture of me floating in the pool next time, it’s just on the other computer. If you could all pray for finances, healing of the ankle, motivation to exercise (mostly because I need to strengthen my neck), Jason’s visa still (it’s a struggle but we are believing it will happen), and for the healing of one of the students dad. Thanks everyone. Love you all.