I woke up on January 1st of this year without a plan.

Kristen Annese, myself and Mai Deplapa on set .

As I surveyed my snow-covered landscape, I suddenly knew.. “I’m moving to Los Angeles.” It was a quiet moment, alone in my house. I had no goal, no plan, no idea of what was before me except that I would need to do a lot of shoveling. I didn’t tell anyone. I didn’t justify my decision. I just made it.

My type A, goal-oriented, list-making, chore-scoring rattled brain had enough. I was just done with objectively making decisions in my life. This winter I was like, you know what? I’m gonna have fun. FUN.

FUN. I don’t mean a vacation. I don’t mean coloring in one of those adult coloring books. I mean I decided this year that I was going to chase the fun.

Everything has fallen into place since I embraced this simple concept: I worked on hands down the most magical (YEP) set I have ever been on, made the type of friends I know I could live forever on a deserted island with, had wonderful opportunities fall into place, and guess what? I didn’t make a list. I didn’t predict this was going to happen. I just let go and trust myself and I have had the privilege and honor of working with and being surrounded by so much talent and love that I literally had moments where I cried I was so grateful.

At the wrap party!

This isn’t the kind of thing you plan for. It’s the kind of thing to which you OPEN yourself.

One of my friends said, “When one door closes, and five more open, why would you try to keep walking through the closed one?” I have had a strong feeling this year that I would be headed somewhere new and that is exactly what I am doing.

Next month I begin work on another film.

After that, I fly out to LA.

Who knows what will happen after that?

But this time next year, I will be writing a blog post from California.

And if something isn’t fun, I won’t be doing it.

Near the end of filming… 🙂

Folks, it’s so much easier than everyone else is saying. Just be yourself. Make a decision. Go have fun.

Let us begin.

“Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.” Oh, Semisonic.  How profound of you.
Can you believe that lyric was printed as an inspirational quote from my tear-off calendar at work?  The tear-off calendar was a gift.  Well…it was given to me by a coworker at Connecticut Public Broadcasting who said, “Here, have this. I got it in the mail.  Or throw it out, I don’t care.”  So naturally I placed it on my desk cause..YEAH! Woot!  Daily inspiration! Why not?!
So 2011 is here.  And yes, I have new calendars. Several, actually.  There’s something about opening up that wall calendar to the first month, tacking it up on your wall…or cubicle..or..tackboard above your desk? and marvelling at all of the days ahead of you. New possibility.  New Beginnings.

I’m not talking about just calendars to hang on the wall either. I’m talking about personal planners. No, no. Not palm pilots, ipads, iphones, blackberries, or computers. You know, personal planners. The kind that you open up (with your hands, not with an application) and inside, you write. 
This is my personal planner:
It’s almost like a book.  It’s bound, it’s blue, it has GREEN LETTERING. Neon green, even.  It’s canvas.  What a good vegan. No leather-bound planners for me!  Ew. I already got it dirty, though.

  • Here’s what I have penciled (I still use pencils. Not because I’m being whimsical or ironic or something, but because my plans constantly change.  If you are my friend you know this and secretly kinda hate me for this) in for 2011 thus far:
  • auditions (New York, Boston, Providence)
  • rehearsals for the show I’m co-directing!
  • shows for said show.
  • movie nights*
  • birthdays
  • rehearsals for another show, “Crimes of the Heart.” I’m playing Babe. So excited.
  • shows for Crimes of the Heart.
  • yoga classes
  • shows for Deana’s Educational Theatre.
  • SAG meetings.
  • bills. bah.
  • program development meetings for Deana’s Educational Theatre
  • salons (harriet beecher stowe house, book discussions, etc).
  • *SAG Awards

I also write little smileys and stars and hearts and doodles on certain days to remind myself to DO something great or BE optimistic or have fun, really.
So, along with new calendars and a new year, there usually come NYR’s. NEW. YEAR. RESOLUTIONS.  Over the years I’ve come up with the same old boring resolutions, (last year, one of them was to drink more water on a daily basis) and usually I’m great at them…because I’m an overachiever and I need to prove that to myself for some sick reason.  But eventually it becomes too stressful and I convince myself that the new part of the year is over, and my resolution has expired.
THIS year, though, is quite different. I’m resolute to basically be more awesome.  Like blogging, for instance.  Instead of boring, wimpy, “updates” on my website page, I’m actually going to write. 
I’m also going to accomplish goal of being more awesome in other ways:  directing with mad skills, trying new things, perfecting my French on a daily basis, reading every book I am interested in this year,writing more in general, and acting so hard / fantastic that I momentarily knock time into a slow-motion warp in the audition room, leaving producers and casting directors in shock for 2-3 minutes (the standard time for a brief, contemporary monologue).
   Sigh.  It’s a good year. ALREADY.  
P.S. I saw “The Town” last.  Ben Affleck can act, so THERE harterz!  Mad props to those friends who made it in the credits, too!  Great work 🙂