Sunday, December 12, 2004

A Picture Perfect Afternoon

A Picture Perfect Afternoon

Since there will be quite a few friends traveling during the holiday season, we've decided to celebrate it earlier this year. Naeem, Will, John Sims, Suba, Eric and I went to the recently opened restaurant on the Plaza -- Brio -- to have lunch. After the wonderful meal, we all went to Will's place to exchange gifts and for some hot cocoa and dessert. The cake was scrumptious and the gifts were fabulous. The best part of this gathering was the time being together, and the thoughts we had for each other especially during the holiday season. It just warmed my heart to be in the same room with my close friends. Will has a gorgeous apartment. It is so nicely decorated that it seems like an instant set for a photo shoot. There were an art director, a graphic designer and a photo stylist in the group, so needless to say, the afternoon had turned into a photo session. However, the pictures above were taken spontaneously, without any art direction or extra styling. Somehow, without trying, the palette and the visual elements just turned into a Burberryesque picture. So, I just had fun with it!

Saturday, December 11, 2004

O Tanenbaum, O Tanenbaum

O Tanenbaum, O Tanenbaum,

To all the readers of my blog, Happy Holidays to all of you.

As the Yuletide season is fast approaching, I was debating whether or not to have a tree this year. I had a terrible experience once with a fresh tree and that had shied me away from the idea for years. Somehow, I revisited it again this year, perhaps just to entertain myself since my brother will be spending the holidays with my family in Malaysia; my best friend, Suba, will be in Montreal to celebrate her nephew's first birthday; and my boyfriend is perhaps going to visit his relatives in Colorado. That leaves me alone, all by myself. So, I've made up my mind to bring back the tree this year. A small and much manageble one. Here's the outcome of a fun filled crafty afternoon. I had been shopping for the ornaments for the past few evenings but had no luck finding the right size tree. After much running around town and calling a few places, I finally got the right one from a florist. This tree is a 4 foot Cedar Top, sparsely decorated with only 25 one-inch frosted globe lights, different sizes and shapes of glass ornaments, many shimmering icicles, and lime green & cream ribbons. The whole tree stands in a silver ice bucket with reindeer handles. I love the fact that it is unconventional, yet it has a touch of retro -- simple, monochromatic yet elegant. But most of all, I love it because it will be here with me this Christmas.

Sunday, December 05, 2004

Bravo, HMC!

Heartland Men's Chorus has done it again! Last night's holiday concert, With Bells On, was simply outstanding! Being part of the chorus, I was extremely proud of how high the level of their performance was. After GALA 2004 in Montreal, Canada, I decided to take a much needed break. I was glad that it allowed me to sit back and enjoy the full effects of the performance from the audience point of view. From the set design to the choralography, everything came together in perfect harmony. (No pun intended.) The balance of the religious and secular holiday songs, the juxtaposition of the serious and funny selections, and the contrast between the traditional and non-traditional pieces were meticulously crafted. I am not a music critic by any means but I know how to appreciate a stunning concert. Last nights performance was a total audio and visual treat for the audience and an emotional ride that pushed all the viewers' right buttons at the right moment. It was so hard for me to even pick a favorite piece because the performance came together so well as a complete concert. All the songs complimented each other and made every individual one unique. However, if I have to pick one, the Silent Night, Holy Night selection was by far the most powerful of all, something I've never seen or heard before. Just when you thought how many Silent NIghts can a chorus sing after 19 years of Holiday concerts, they totally surprised the audience by singing it in sign language. After the first verse, the chorus repeated the same verse. This time, in total silence. They continue signing, but no music nor singing. They sang in "silence". The audience just held their breath, awed by the haunting simulated "new" experience of being deaf and how we often take all our senses for granted. Some of us were moved to tears. Congratulations to the Chorus for all the hard-work and such a superb performance. Bravo! I can't wait to go back and sing with you guy for the next concert.

Friday, December 03, 2004

Wreath Sold

I'm glad that the wreath was sold before the end of the auction. It went for $100. The turn out was good so the store was packed. I wonder if the sale would have been better if they didn't look so blend-in with everything else at the Restoration Hardware. There was a little mix up in the beginning on the identity of my wreath. I had seperately brought in the wreath and the card which had the sponsor's name and a little dedication message. I told the person who took the card from me to attach it to the wreath that's made out of candy. She did, but to a different wreath that had fake candy ornaments over an evergreen wreath. Luckily, as I was browsing around, I stumbled upon it and saw that the card was on the wrong wreath! So I took it and stuck it on mine. A client of mine and his wife were there when I pulled the card off and he said, "I was thinking, I don't think Michael's work is this traditional."