For posterity, I wanted to document some of the most memorable moments I experienced in 2009. There have been some amazingly wonderful times . . .
Last January, I was blessed to visit my good friends Leigh and Chris in Seattle. I stayed for a few days and brought along Oreo and Buttercup. I ate a HUGE burrito, hung out with a troll, visited Bainbridge Island, visited the grave of Bruce Lee and his son, had a lovely ferry ride, wandered aimlessly through a cubist library, and pretty much took photos of O and B all around the city. More than anything, I enjoyed spending time with Leigh, Chris, and their beautiful daughter Sophia! It was the best trip ever.
In February, my sister made a second attempt at teaching me how to knit. The first time it happened I got really frustrated and tossed it all aside. For whatever reason, something stuck this time around. My first project was a beautiful maroon and beige scarf that I still wear to this day. So far, I've knitted eight scarves, two hats, a bracelet, and half of a throw blanket ever since. It is such relaxing and rewarding way to pass the time. I'll be knitting more in the next year. Here is a photo of the first scarf I ever knitted:
Last February, I visited Atlanta with my friend Chris. We were mainly there to see an Antony and the Johnsons concert, but we decided to make a whole weekend out of it. Of course, I took Oreo and Buttercup along. We visited some fancy malls, and I ate this AMAZING butternut squash dish that I will never forget as long as I live. It was a really wonderful trip. My friend Chris was the best host ever! Here he is being slightly embarrassed having his picture taken with a miniature piano and a rowdy bench:
Simply put, it was one of the best concerts I have ever been to. This was one band that did not need a bunch of crazy pyrotechnics and theatrics to put on a beautiful show. They were on tour to support the release of the new album "The Crying Light" and sang most of the songs from it. There was even a cover of Beyonce's hit song "Crazy In Love". I sat in the front row in direct sight of Antony playing the piano. It was so mesmerizing. After the show, my friend Chris and I got to meet Antony. He signed a copy of his CD for me, and I gave him a copy of my album "Seahorses". It was the best concert ever! For sure, I will see them perform again whenever I possibly can.
Last April, I did some fun shows in Charlotte, NC at Jackson's Java and Manifest Discs for National Record Store day. While there, I got to visit many old friends. My drummer and I stayed at a hotel in the middle of downtown. There was plenty to see and lots to do. Much fun was had by all.
There are people who remember the day Elvis died and others who remember when John Lennon was shot. I will always remember when Michael Jackson died. He was a living, breathing legend----a one-of-a-kind class act. Last June, I mourned his passing along with the world, and I am grateful now to have his music to help preserve his memory. He rests in peace and in our hearts, always.
I was fortunate to be a guest performer at the Persacon Anime Convention in Decatur, Alabama last July. It was a memorable trip. I made a lot of friends and played a TON of my songs for everyone. Alabama is a beautiful state! This trip opened my eyes to the culture of anime and the conventions that celebrate them. It was all incredibly fun and fascinating.
[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="That's me in the background stuffing my face!"]
I enjoyed Alabama so much that I went back a couple of weeks later and hung out in Huntsville for a day to visit a friend and clear my head a little bit. It was a much needed break from regular life.
In September, I did a show at Manifest Discs again and employed my Roland Synthesizer in the mix to add more texture to my music. It went extremely well. While there, my friend Chris treated me to the most amazing burger at a place called The Counter at Southpark Mall. OMG!! It was one of the best burgers I've ever had! SOOOO GOOOOD!!
Perhaps the most memorable event of 2009 was the birth of my nephew Francisco Kitiona Marcelo. Even though he only lived for two weeks, my whole family was blessed to have him in our lives for even that long. It was the greatest hardship when he died, and it was a testament to the strength of my family that we made it through it all okay. We had a beautiful memorial service and burial for him, and an entire community of people rallied around us in support. The blessings started from him and multiplied from there.
We will cherish him always . . .
In my family, it is an annual tradition to celebrate New Year's Eve with my Mom since it is also her birthday. This year we went to a fabulous Japanese restaurant in downtown Nashville called Kobe Steakhouse. We ate delicious food, got my Mom a little tipsy, and brought in the new year with a bang! It was a lot of fun.