Sunday December 18 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11:45 a.m.


Ana made a bunch of us French Toast using Trader Joe’s new French Brioche bread. Delicious. Enjoying it with what I call “horrible coffee”, made by Ana cause she doesn’t ever measure the grounds and water. But really it’s not that bad. Did I mention the French Toast was delicious?


I write out a to-do list that won’t realistically be completed today but we set out to do the most necessary. Clean bedroom window: check. Grab end tables from mom’s storage unit: check. Call dad to talk about Christmas weekend: check. Clean oil stains at the Music Makers store: check. Finish making treble clef candy canes: check.





Scrambled Eggs. Naan Bread with Non-Dairy Cream Cheese. Potato Chips. Oolong Tea.

Watching Risen (2016).


Ana and I go to Trader Joe’s.

I joke, “Weren’t you just here earlier?”

“I’ve accepted the fact that I have to come here all the time,” she says back.


Practicing singing at the shop and recording a Christmas video...




Black Bean Salmon Tacos with Cucumber, Carrots, Tomatoes, Avocado, and Arugula.


Writing out Christmas cards for students.


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Images by me.

Saturday December 17 2016

[i]

Waking up at 10:30 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Yerba Mate Tea.


Teaching lessons at Music Makers all afternoon. Slipping in a Honey Crisp Apple.


Scrambled Eggs. Naan Bread with Non-Dairy Cream Cheese. Corn Tortilla Chips with Avocado and Tomato. Oolong Tea.


Napping.


Teaching in-home lessons to the Kain-Kuzniewski’s.


Eating leftover Pad Thai.

Watching The Good Neighbor (2016).


Organizing music.


I came across an old blog entry from a night when Ana and I were struggling in the relationship, or at least when she was afraid of our relationship...


I message the link to Ana and ask if she still feels the same.

She replies, “I feel like I read a whole scene in a movie. imagining every moment as I read was kind of weird/cool at the same time. You're very good at observing and writing. I feel that your perspective was extremely accurate. It's weird and cool reliving those moments through words. Made me tear up a little. I was afraid then, but now, the more I develop myself, the more love I have for you. Most nights after I settle in my bed, I'm always thankful that I have someone that I love, who loves me back, and inspires me and others to grow. So no, I don't feel the same.”


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image source unknown.

Friday December 16 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11:23 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


At the Rec playing pick-up basketball full court style.


Toasted PB&J. Potato Chips. Oolong Tea.

Watching The Woodsman (2004).


Teaching a few in-home lessons then one at Music Makers. My mom shows up with distress over a sudden schedule change with a teacher. You really feel the pain after a while of running this business whenever you have to restructure schedules last minute. It all has to be pieced together just right to work.


Back home.

Napping.


Black Beans with Kale and Quinoa.


Ana, Will, Stacy, and I pile into Ana’s little egg car and head to Norfolk for the rock show at Charlie’s featuring You’re Jovian, True Body, and Suburban Living. There’s also a mini flea market in the back room, which basically looks like an extension of our house with VHS tapes stacked to the ceiling, records, toys, posters, and random collector’s items. Doug’s vintage shirt collection is entertaining to flip through. Seeing plenty of friends and familiar faces. Sipping on a Bohemian on draft (or Natty Boh as it’s really called). They built a ply board stage supported by crates for the bands. It’s not stabilized in any way – I watch as the guitar player of True Body keeps slipping from all the frenetic energy of the music.








Back home. Settling down with Ana in my bed. We immediately feed off the sexual energy, long-awaited.


Sleep 3:30 a.m.


[i] Images by James Robinson (jayrobphotography.com)

Thursday December 15 2016

[i]

Waking up at 10:45 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


Teaching a few lessons.


Scrambled Eggs. Toast with Non-Dairy Cream Cheese. Corn Tortilla Chips with Avocado and Tomato. Oolong Tea.


Teaching more lessons at Music Makers.


Fuji Apple.


Back home. Pad Thai Noodles with Kale, Tofu, Zucchini, Onions, and Mushrooms.

Watching Ben-Hur (2016).


Ladada rehearsal.


Back home. I bribed Ana into making cookies for us in exchange for sleeping in my bed. It worked. Enjoying at least five of them with Chamomile Tea.


Discovering I can hold 14 mugs using one hand.

“It’s a world record I’m sure!” I say.


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Wednesday December 14 2016

[i]

My legs are sweating as I wake up from stressful dreams involving my arm being gnawed on ferociously by an animal that looks like a creature from a Miyazaki movie.


Leftover Pancake with Strawberries, Greek Yogurt, and Syrup. Guayusa Tea.


At the Rec starting to work out but I get caught up in some full court basketball games.


Tuna Salad Sandwich with Lettuce and Tomato. Potato Chips. Oolong Tea.


Teaching lessons at Music Makers.


Piñata Apple.




Tonight is Katelyn’s last lesson with me. She’s one of my longtime students. Her family is moving to San Diego. It’s always a sad day when I have to let go of a student I’ve been investing a lot of time into. She’s got this wonderful energy and the perfect hands for piano.


Back home. Mom made dinner: Flounder with Mashed Potatoes, Brussel Sprouts, and Peas.

Watching Ben-Hur (2016).


Chores.




Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Tuesday December 13 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11:09 a.m.


Steel Cut Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Strawberries, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Yerba Mate Tea.


At the gym starting a workout routine again.


Scrambled Eggs. Naan Bread with Non-Dairy Cream Cheese. Potato Chips. Oolong Tea. Pineapple.

Watching Snowden (2016).


Teaching lessons at Music Makers.




Back home.

Tempeh with Onions, Broccoli, and Black Rice.


Chores.


Practicing piano at the studio.


Grapes.


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Monday December 12 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11:30 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


Getting groceries at Trader Joe’s with Ana.


Research. Still trying to figure out how to get a loan for $30,000 to buy the business.


Tuna Salad Sandwich with Lettuce and Tomato. Potato Chips. Oolong Tea.

Watching Werner Herzog’s Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World (2016).


Teaching lessons at Music Makers.


Leftover Yellow Lentils with Brussel Sprouts, Onions, and Black Rice.


ELO rehearsal. It’s been quite a while for all of us.


Back home. Stacy’s back! Kevin just arrived home from picking her up in Richmond. She’s here from Russia to stay for at least a year. Kevin cleaned up his room thoroughly beforehand. You can see it on his face how happy he is that she is here.




Chamomile Tea.


Later on...

Anthony barges into my room and plops on the bed with that wonderful grin and says, “What’s up dude?”

We talk a long time about the fate of his music endeavors, his dreams, love, escape, and finding yourself.


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Sunday December 11 2016

[i]

Waking up at 12:21 p.m. Feels nice to sleep in.


Buckwheat Pancakes with Strawberries, Greek Yogurt, and Syrup. Guayusa Tea.


At the Rec playing pick-up basketball.


Back home. Catching up on things.


Cashews.


Getting groceries at Whole Foods.


After Ana gets off work we go to the Pizza Chapel, a hot new pizza joint that just opened up in Shadowlawn. Enjoying the floral wallpaper and Pizza slices. Sipping on a Crispin off tap and critiquing the things on television.


Doing our cat duties. Giving Elvis a much needed bath using the Advantage flea shampoo.


Later on, Ana and I finally finish Princess Mononoke (1997).




Chores. Business.


Sleep 3:30 a.m.


[i] Drawing by Ana.

Saturday December 10 2016

[i]

Waking up at 10 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


Teaching a few lessons at Music Makers.


Then, at Bella Monte for our first piano/voice recital. It’s kind of a debut since I’ve never conducted one before. And this time we didn’t incorporate it into rock school. 20 different students performing original songs, Christmas songs, and more. I accompany some on the piano. I never feel comfortable leading events on the microphone but I’m gonna have to get used to it now that I run this business. The kids gave it their all. I’m very proud of them all.




Enjoying a plate of Capellini Noodles with Salmon.


Back home. Relaxing. Napping.


Researching. Chores.


Lunch for dinner: Toasted PB&J. Potato Chips. Oolong Tea.

Watching The Whole Truth (2016).


Practicing drums.


Ginger Bread with Chamomile Tea.


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Friday December 9 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


Ana and I hit the gym. At the Rec playing a few rounds of basketball.


Scrambled Eggs. Naan Bread with Non-Dairy Cream Cheese. Potato Chips with Avocado. Oolong Tea.

Watching The Magnificent Seven (2016).


Borrowing Ana’s car cause mine is in the shop (won’t even start). Teaching all my in-home lessons.




Then, straight to a DEJA gig in Kempsville at Wing King. Eating dinner on the way: Leftover Lentils, Kale, and Quinoa.

...

There. It’s a very lively and crowded show tonight – the energy is just right and it feels like we’re having a good time playing the songs. All the ladies make use of the dance floor for all the Led Zeppelin tunes.


Banana. Chocolate. Chamomile Tea.


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Thursday December 8 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11 a.m.


Steel Cut Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Yerba Mate Tea.


Teaching a few lessons.


My car wouldn’t start last night. I complain to Ana and mom in a joking manner about how I can’t keep up with life. Every time I turn around it’s just one more thing to manage and fix.


Scrambled Eggs. Naan Bread with Non-Dairy Cream Cheese. Potato Chips. Oolong Tea.


Teaching more lessons at Music Makers.


Honey Crisp Apple.


Back home.

Making dinner with mom.

Yellow Lentil Soup with Chicken, Kale, and Brown Rice.

Watching The Magnificent Seven (2016).


Sleep 3 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Wednesday December 7 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11:27 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


Research. Managing website. And other various things I have to do.


Tuna Salad Sandwich with Lettuce and Tomato. Potato Chips with Avocado. Oolong Tea.


Teaching lessons at Music Makers.


Back home. Ana made dinner Zucchini Lasagna with Bread.


At DEJA rehearsal. Practicing “Kashmir” and discussing the future of DEJA after Drew’s shoulder surgery.


Back home. Cat chores. Chilling with Ana.


Sleep 3:30 a.m.


[i] Image  by me.

Tuesday December 6 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11:40 a.m.


Steel Cut Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


Researching. Business.


Teaching lessons at Music Makers.


Snacking on Almonds (that taste like wood) and Plantain Chips with Oolong Tea.




Back home. Making dinner: Tempeh with Onions, Brussel Sprouts, Carrots, and Quinoa.

Watching a documentary on Michael Alig called Glory Daze (2015).


Researching.


Doing the cat chores. Chatting with Ana.


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Monday December 5 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11:22 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Black Tea.


Tearing my hair over fixing stuff on the website. CSS code is not my expertise but I’m learning.


Scrambled Eggs. Naan Bread with Non-Dairy Cream Cheese. Potato Chips with Avocado. Oolong Tea.


Teaching lessons at Music Makers.


Honey Crisp Apple.


Back home.

Making Linguini Noodles with a Lemon Butter Garlic Sauce, Red Peppers, Onions, and Broccoli.

Watching Morgan (2016).


Pineapple.


Researching.


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Sunday December 4 2016

[i]

Waking up at noon.


A bowl of Honey Crunch n’ Oats with Almond Milk.


At the Rec playing pick-up basketball. It’s a long string of 4-on-4 games. I somehow end up with a dominating team – one win after the other. I’m not making too many shots but I’m getting a good workout.


Toasted PB&J. Oolong Tea.


Mike Joyner and his girlfriend come over. He’s helping me tweak the Music Makers website and figuring out the kinks in the logo.


My mom and I make a fish fry dinner: Dover Sole, Cornbread, Roasted Potatoes and Onions, and a Spinach Salad.


Continuing to improve the website.


General play with Ana and the cat.




Sleep 3:30 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Saturday December 3 2016

Waking up at 11 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Yerba Mate Tea.


Teaching lessons at Music Makers all afternoon.


Toasted PB&J. Potato Chips. Banana. Oolong Tea.


Catching up on business.


Errands. Bank. Trader Joe’s.


Leftover Curry Chic Peas, Broccoli, Carrots, Onions, and Brown Rice.

Watching Sully (2016).


Pineapple.


Practicing piano at the studio.


Sleep 4 a.m.

Friday December 2 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


At the Rec shooting the basketball around. There was supposed to be organized games this afternoon but nobody really showed up. I run into a guy named Hunter who knows Darren. He used to come to 1435 some time ago. We talk and play each other in 1-on-1.


Tuna Salad Sandwich with Tomato. Potato Chips with Avocado. Oolong Tea.

Finishing Suicide Squad (2016).


Teaching all my in-home lessons.


Comice Pear.


When struggling a little bit with an exercise on piano Anna, one of my students, exclaims, “I’m dying inside!”

“Sometimes you have to die a little if you want to live a little,” I explain.


Back home. Cynthia gifted the house with two large Pizzas from Whole Foods. We all dig in.


My new iPad Air 2 came in the mail. Setting everything up and researching good teaching/music apps. My goal is to use it as a main tool for teaching.


I had said goodnight to Ana before I went to bed but she comes to join me later in the night. We make love pretty quickly thereafter.


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Thursday December 1 2016

Waking up at 10:07 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Black Tea.


Teaching a few lessons at Music Makers.


Bank errands.


Scrambled Eggs. Toast with Non-Dairy Cream Cheese. Corn Tortilla Chips with Avocado. Oolong Tea.


Teaching more lessons.


Curry Chic Peas with Onions, Kale, Cauliflower, and Brown Rice.

Watching Suicide Squad (2016).


Combing fleas out of the cat, a daily task that has to be done, sometimes twice daily. Relaxing. Researching.


Chocolate and Chamomile Tea.


Often I find myself bossing Ana around, mostly about the lack of organization in her room. She makes sure to let me know exactly how bossy I am. I don’t mean to be. And I know she understands my bossiness comes from a place of good intentions. When she’s organized she’s happy. And that helps our relationship. But I need to allow her to complete tasks in her own due time.


Sleep 3 a.m.

Wednesday November 30 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11:30 a.m. Ana and I tried to sleep through a surprisingly hot night. I’ve got the window open and no covers over me. The jets are blasting overhead like it’s WWIII.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


Teaching a few lessons at Music Makers.


Teaching more lessons until 8 p.m.


Back home. Making dinner: Brown Rice Quinoa Spaghetti Noodles with Tomato Sauce, Onions, a Salad, and a Baguette. Ana and I put on Miyazaki’s Princess Mononoke (1997) watching up to the halfway point.


Grapes.


At the studio doing the books, bills, and payroll for November. Meanwhile, Ana practices piano and later I hop on the drums.


Sleep 3 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Tuesday November 29 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11:30 a.m.


Steel Cut Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Yerba Mate Tea.


Errands with Ana.


Scrambled Eggs. Toast with Non-Dairy Cream Cheese. Potato Chips with Avocado. Oolong Tea.


Teaching lessons at Music Makers.


Leftover Salmon with Couscous, Beets, and Kale.

Watching Hell or High Water (2016).


Kringle.


Managing the MM website.


At the studio practicing drums while Ana practices piano.


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Monday November 28 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11:30 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


Kitchen chores – prepping dinner.


Toasted PB&J. Potato Lentil Curls. Holiday Grapes. Black Tea.


Teaching lessons all day at Music Makers.




Apple.


Back home after 9 p.m. cooking dinner: Tofu with Broccoli, Carrots, Onions, Mushrooms, and Pink Madagascar Rice.


Becca’s in town! Everyone gathers around the dining booth. Will’s slicing up apples to go with his cheese. Kevin’s gnawing and gobbling on a turkey leg. The rest of us sip on tea and wine and enjoy Kringle.





At the shop practicing drums and such while Ana plays piano.


Sleep 3:30 a.m.


[i] Images by me.

Sunday November 27 2016

Waking up at noon.


Steel Cut Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Yerba Mate Tea.


Errands.


At the Rec playing basketball.


Scrambled Eggs. Naan Bread with Non-Dairy Cream Cheese. Corn Tortilla Chips with Avocado and Tomato. Black Tea.

Watching a history doc.


Constructing and designing the new Music Makers website using Squarespace. It’s practically there and live. Still needs a few minor tweaks and more content.


Pizza and Salad.


Eating the last of mom’s Sweet Potato Pie.


Researching iPads.


Sleep next to Ana at 3:30 a.m.

Saturday November 26 2016

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Waking up at 11:30 a.m.


Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


Teaching a few afternoon lessons at Music Makers.


Ana brought home some Sweet Potato Biscuits from Handsome Biscuit. I toast one up for lunch and add Peanut Butter and Jam. Black Tea.

Watching Jason Bourne (2016).


Stuck at the computer trying to build a new website for Music Makers, along with other business.


After midnight I complain to Ana, “I’ve just been glued to the computer all day! I’ve gotta get out and go play drums or something.”


At the shop with Ana. While I work through this drum book she practices bass.


Chamomile Tea.


Sleep 4 a.m.


[i] Image by me.

Friday November 25 2016

[i]

Waking up at 11 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Guayusa Tea.


Applying for the business loan.


Shooting the basketball around on the street courts near Lynnhaven Middle. The weather is surprisingly nice – not cold at all.


Scrambled Eggs. Naan Bread with Non-Dairy Cream Cheese. Potato Chips. Black Tea.

Watching The Untold History of the United States (2013).




Off to teach all my in-home lessons. I’m starting a new student today, Jillian, 13-years old – can play very well. Her and her mother lost their husband/father a few years ago – he was a Navy Seal. As her mom explains to me music has been great therapy for her. After helping her work through an Adele song and commenting on a video she saw of me playing an original song she asks, “Why aren’t you famous?” In my mind I reply “That’s a good question.” I do tend to get asked this question on occasion from students and it makes me wonder, but also makes me anxious and question why I haven’t already pursued a career in songwriting. I feel like I’ve been trying but not hard enough.


Later on, at the Kain’s house. After all the lessons I agree to play a few songs for the grandparents who are visiting just for a few weeks. Afterwards, the granddad slips me a hundred dollar bill in gratitude for teaching their grandchildren. They can see the enjoyment the kids get out of it. The grandmother won’t stop thanking me. These kinds of days make me feel like I’m doing something right.


Back home. Not sure what to do for dinner I warm up the last of the Red Bean Tempeh Chili with Broccoli, Cauliflower, Carrots, and Quinoa.


Chores. Researching.


Chilling with Ana and the cat.


Sleep 3:30 a.m.


[i] Images by me.

Thursday November 24 2016

[i]

Waking up just before noon.


While trying to strategically walk up the staircase I end up slipping and falling. Luckily, I managed to save my breakfast plate from spilling. Ana catches me a second after the incident.

“I slipped on my slippers,” I tell her.

“Well they are called slippers,” she says.

Leftover Pancake with Coffee.


I can’t stop sneezing.


Ana, my mom, and I drive over to Shore Drive right near the Lesner Bridge for Ana’s family Thanksgiving gathering. There’s plenty to fill up our bellies with – a lot of sweet Filipino dishes that I’ve never heard of before. I brought the piano and guitar for Ana and I, and whomever, to sing songs. 







Back home. After settling in and making love to Ana I put on a movie: Captain Fantastic (2016). With my mom, Ana, and Joseph (a new resident of 1435) we all enjoy it together over bowls of leftover Red Bean Tempeh Chili, Kale, and Sweet Potato Pie.


Chamomile Tea.


Sleep  2:30 a.m.


[i] Images by me.

Wednesday November 23 2016

[i]


Waking up at 10:30 a.m.


Irish Oatmeal with Cinnamon, Raisins, Maple Syrup, and Kefir. Banana. Yerba Mate.


At the bank opening up a business account – eager to get started on this business loan.


Errands. A lesson.


Toasted PB&J. Potato Chips. Applesauce. Green Tea.


Teaching a small batch of lessons at Music Makers.


Then, with mom and Ana in the car, I drive to Norfolk for the big NorVa show. I’m playing with Ladada to open the show, then J. Flax and the Heart Attacks, and Major and the Monbacks. There’s a ton of people here – it’s Thanksgiving Eve so I assume a lot of people are back in town with nothing to do. We played a solid set and concluded our performance with a Neil Young cover of “Rockin’ in the Free World”.






Pizza.


We chill out at the venue as long as possible before it’s time to head back to VB for another gig I’m playing with DEJA at South Beach Grille. My life is a constant overload of gigs and teaching. But I don’t feel overwhelmed this evening. I was able to corral Will, Cynthia, and Anthony from the house. The band did the first set without me and had their original member, Eric Veterrick, fill in my absence. But now I’m here to do the second set. 




Back home. Chilling with the gang. Eating some leftover Red Bean Tempeh Chili with Kale.


Sleep 3:30 a.m.


[i] Images by me.