Tag Archives: doing a play with my daughter

TWENTY Pictures from the Play

Alas, another summer play is behind us. Am I proud? relieved? sad? Yes. To all three. As I’ve learned from the many shows I’ve done since I was Vivien’s age, you truly form a bond with people you see and get silly with every single day. So much so that you feel a void when these people are taken from your daily routine by something as simple as a final curtain. And, personally, I’ll never be able to hear the word “twerk” again without thinking of this show. (It’s a private joke. Don’t worry, Mom. I never twerked in this production.)

So did I take any pictures? Well, what do you think? I just wish I’d gotten to everyone in the cast. Unfortunately, I was limited to the moments I was offstage and actually had a camera handy.

To the cast and crew of All Shook Up, thanks for giving my girl and me a great summer. We’ll be thinking about all of you when we visit Graceland next month. Can’t wait ’til next year!


Me and my best girl. Yes, she’s as tall as me now. I should’ve sprung for the platform blue suedes.


With two of Viv’s best pals. What was I thinking taking such a close-up shot with three, fresh-faced 12-year-olds? (Next time, background, Michele. Background.)


Fine. I’ll remove myself from this one. Because what’s better than three sweet young girls doing the old school Charlie’s Angels thing?


How about three sweet young boys? Dressed as church ladies?


And speaking of which … old lady selfies. Because I might not get that chance again for (cough) fifty years.


We just couldn’t take enough old lady pictures.


Getting our crotchety on right before the big number.


The guy who could do everything from channel Elvis to fix a wedding dress. And I should probably mention he was also one of our two directors.


Only six of the one hundred forty-four blue suede shoes in the show.


So glad this lady did the show with me.


Dressing room selfie. Anyone remember B*tchy Resting Face? (Is it weird that I censored that word given my blog name? Probably.)


Me and “the Mechanic’s Daddy.”


The bus. Oh, dear God, the bus. Good times, Mitzi.


The last night of the show a gang? gaggle? hunka-hunka-herd of Rolling Elvi stopped by to wish us luck. Naturally, I had to get a picture.


This shot might be my favorite. We just love it when that happens.

Until we meet again in Memphis, Elvis.

Wanna read my other posts about All Shook Up?

11 Tips on Doing a Play With Your Kid
12  of My Favorite Elvis Songs
5 Things You Need to be a Church Lady


June is Blog Post by Numbers Month. Wanna play with Mel and me? Just write a “listy-type” post with a number in the title (ex. FOUR Reasons I Love Mayonnaise, SIX Things You Can Do With A Paper Clip). Then link back to us and tweet us about it so we can include you on June 30th in our final list: (Number-Yet-To-Be-Determined) Great Bloggers Who Played the Blog Post by Numbers Game!

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ELEVEN Tips on Doing a Play With Your Kid

I’m finishing up another show with my girl. What a great experience it’s been for both of us. Of course, there are always things upon which I could improve. So, like last year, I’ve taken the liberty of keeping a list of helpful hints for the next time she and I take the stage together.

For the record, Viv … I can’t wait.


1. At my age, there’s a very fine line between stage makeup and the drag queen effect. I’m pretty sure I crossed it at least half the nights. Oh, how I fear the performance video. In a I’ve-just-seen-Psycho-and-I-now-need-to-take-a-shower kind of way.

2. And while I’m on the subject of make-up, I wish the gifted engineers who make lip stain would share their secret with the incompetent boobs who make nail polish. Every night when I get home, I need to rub that shi- … (wait! kids from the show might be reading this) stuff off with industrial sandpaper.

3. There are a GREAT many things on the list of foods I can’t eat before a show. Among them so far … jambalaya, shrimp, chowder, lasagna, cannelloni, Mexican food, a shi- (dang it! … the kids) boatload of cheese. Only Tic Tacs agree with me in those valuable hours leading up to a performance. (How have I not lost weight during this show???)

4. If there are moments in the show where you are suddenly expected to freeze in an expressive position so as not to draw attention from a spotlighted soloist, do not freeze with your mouth open while facing downward. Gravity + saliva = your worst enemies.

5. When going to the bathroom during the show in costume, always check when you’re done to see if the back of your skirt is tucked into your scuba suit of undergarments. I cannot stress this enough.

6. And while we’re on THAT subject, a heavy sweater over another sweater over a dress over a leotard … in New Orleans … in June? Well, there’s simply not enough deodorant in the world.

7. Making young people laugh and break character on stage is easier than one would think. (Oops.)

8. Take every opportunity you can to pee. (See #5) You never know when the urge is going to hit and it’s the last thing you need distracting you on stage. And know that even something as benign as a smoothie for dinner can be trouble (per #3) as it will result in a record-setting night for bathroom visitations. My personal best for the 2.5 hour show is 14. I should probably see a doctor about that.

9. Blue suede shoes are a surprisingly uncomfortable and unsupportive choice in footwear. I’m thinking that THIS had something to do with all the flailing Elvis exhibited back in the day. Think about it. Fat Elvis dumped the shoes for a jumpsuit and did you ever see him flail again? No. Because his feet were finally happy. Of course, I think this is when the whole arm windmill thing started. And THAT was probably because his bedazzled pajamas were too tight.

10. It is astonishingly difficult to hang on to a slippery bible while dancing and wearing old lady church gloves. Next time you run into one of these feisty women, I suggest challenging her to a thumb war. And be prepared to have your butt kicked. (Whew, I almost said ass. Then I remembered the kids. Nice save, Michele.)

11. If you leave your phone unattended in a room full or teen/tweens, you can and should expect changed ringtones … new screen savers … and entire photo albums of these.


I love these kids. Every one of them. For realz, yo. (Can I pull that off? Too late.)


June is Blog Post by Numbers Month. Wanna play with Mel and me? Just write a “listy-type” post with a number in the title (ex. FOUR Reasons I Love Mayonnaise, SIX Things You Can Do With A Paper Clip). Then link back to us and tweet us about it so we can include you on June 30th in our final list: (Number-Yet-To-Be-Determined) Great Bloggers Who Played the Blog Post by Numbers Game!

Vote for me @ Top Mommy Blogs - Mom Blog Directory

Ten Tips on Doing a Live Play With Your Daughter

1. There’s no amount of perfume, powder and deodorant that is too much. Buy extra and give it as gifts on opening night to the whole cast.

2. Don’t drink before the show. And no, I’m not talking about alcohol. I mean anything. Because after you’ve put on a leotard, dance tights, biker shorts, a dress and a long velour robe, it’s kind of a pain in the butt to pee. Which I did on average four times per show. Even with my rule.

3. It’s good to eat a little something before the show each night to give you the energy you’ll need to push through to the curtain call. It is not, however, good for that “little something” to be sushi. That stuff will repeat on you all night. And raw fish in your stomach? Not so good after four hours.

4. When trying to decide between being comfortable and being MODEST, choose modesty. Every time. Never mind the fact that adding a layer of Spanxy scuba suit underneath everything made me even hotter. I was so covered and sucked in that I could’ve streaked through the place in my nude unitard and not (completely) died of embarrassment.

5. Pay close attention when they’re teaching the choreography … and don’t miss ANY practices. Otherwise, after you’ve performed the dance move that is done three times a night in seven of the eight performances (that’s 21 times for anyone not gifted mathematically), your darling daughter will inform you that you have been doing it wrong. Every time. On video. For a live audience.


Here’s what I was wearing for my TWENTY-ONE mistakes.

6. And while I’m on the subject … if you forget a lyric, a dance move, a stage direction, make up for it with unbridled enthusiasm. If you don’t look nervous, you’ll look less like you’re making a mistake. Or so my brain has protected me into believing.

7. When asked if you want to share a dressing room with all the other adult women in the cast OR switch teams to share a room with your daughter and all the other children, sweetly kiss your girl on the cheek and tell her you’ll see her after the show. (I need to remember this advice for next year.)

8. Unless …. you want to overhear things like the girl who talked about her mom who (supposedly) says, “Fix your OWN dinner! I’m playing Words With Friends!” (If that poor woman knew I’d heard that … and was now writing about it!) The parent gossip is juicy. Because the kids forget I’m in there. And they’re all trying to outdo each other. Oh, have I got dirt.

9. When all of the little people in the cast see you in your stage make-up and costume (aided by the aforementioned scuba suit) and they ask how old you are … but then, before you can answer, one little angel guesses “Twenty?” … act amazed that she guessed correctly on the first try. And then when one particularly smart one says, “But wait, aren’t you Vivien’s mom?” look her dead in the face and say “Who’s Vivien?”

10. Remember that everything you’re doing is creating lasting memories with your girl. So be sure to make them good ones.


I’ve had an absolute blast doing the show with you, Viv. I can’t believe the last show is tonight.

I’m already looking forward to next year!

* * * * * * * * * *

Linked to MamaKat’s writing prompt asking us to write a blog post inspired by the word modest. (awkward pause) Fine. I cheated. But only the teeniest, tiniest bit. Which is practically like not cheating at all.

I think I’ll go teach that to my children.