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Special Date: Friday Night Live

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Special Date: Friday Night Live

Friday Night Live Crew

It is not in vain that Providence is called The Creative Capital; we have a good concoction of cultures, flavors, and rhythms, as well as many artists injecting life and energy into the city.  I enjoy this mix and often drag my kids to cultural events, may they too develop an appreciation of varied forms of art.  For our latest special date, Aleck and I attended Friday Night Live,  a weekly family friendly Improv show where a group of talented performers make it up as they go.

We had lots of laughs during this interactive show where the actors often ask the 

Aleck and I at the show

audience to provide random words as inspiration for their improv skits.  Part of the show is an acoustic guitarist that gives the performance an extra kick.  They also have an Open
Stage Night once a month where members of the audience get their 5 minutes of fame to perform a skit of their own. This clean comedic performance, which was named Best of Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly,  is family and wallet friendly at $5 per person.  Aleck and I absolutely enjoyed it.  He was happy I brought him to the show as our special date, and took many pictures of the skits.  I was glad to have such a handsome companion (not that I am biased ;))at this event.

Friday Night Live is part of the Everett company, “a cross-cultural, cross-generational group of artists that creates original evening-length dance theater performances, produces film and video, carries out a wide range of educational programs, and mentors new generations of young artists” as stated on their website  “Everett, through its Company, Stage and School, brings live art to diverse audiences. With a 25-year history, a Company that tours nationally; a vibrant Stage of monthly programming; and a School that offers free classes to low-income youth in everything from ballet to improvisation, Everett is at the forefront of integrating art and community…  No one is turned away for lack of funds and 95% of students attend classes for free.”

At the end of the performance Bianca, one of the talented young actors, asked us to watch a short promo video for a film she’s hoping to produce as part of her final thesis at Emerson College.  In her own words 
Got You tells the story of an 8 year old girl’s discovery of her mother’s suicidal thoughts. This film aims to raise awareness for depression and suicide and how it impacts the relationships we have with our loved ones. I would be so eternally grateful if you could help make this film a reality. Every dollar toward a donation counts, but even if you can’t help out financially, please spread the word! We NEED to raise $5000 by December 3rd!” 
I strongly encourage you to help.  Donations start as low as $1.  As someone who has dealt with postpartum depression, and still deal with clinical depression and SAD, I know how painful and alienating this condition can be, and the profound effect it has on one’s relationships.

Here is the link to the “Kickstarter” page where you can learn more information and also donate:

Keeping My Word

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Remember when I made this statement: “I have never dared to donate blood because I am terrified of needles; however, upon considering Phil’s suggestion to do so on 2 Words: Become Better, decided to put on the brave armour and furnish my left arm next time there’s a blood drive at work”?   Well, I do, because I actually posted that on my Volunteering/Donating page.   

RI Blood Center Bus

To say that needles make me feel uneasy or anxious would be an understatement.  I think fretful would be a more appropriate term. Nonetheless, I committed to donating blood, and was planning on finding out the date of the next blood drive at work in order to do so. Only I didn’t need to do that because guess what I found right on the parking lot when I arrived to work this morning?   Yeap, I had to put on that courage armour in a rush.  Went to my office to sign in.  Checked my email, sent a few replies, and headed back to the parking lot.  Wait; I recalled Cece‘s advise to have a good meal before donating blood.  I’m covered.  Had my Herbalife protein shake, which boasts 114 nutrients (pardon the plug 🙂 ).  I was greeted by an attendant who gave me information to read while she took my driver’s license to input my data in their system.  Afterwards another attendant took me in a little room and interviewed me about my health history; took my temperature, blood pressure and pulse.  Next she did an awful thing I tell you.  She pricked my finger and extracted some blood in order to get my blood cell count.  That was the worst part of the whole process!  It is a good thing no one warned me about the finger prick because I am terrified of this. 

Then to the real deal, she guided me to one of the donating beds; assessed my veins; sanitized my left arm; tied it and gave me a stress ball to squeeze.  After giving me a heads up, she inserted the needle.  Ouchie.  The pain faded quickly; however, the notion of the needle being inside of me is what really stressed me.  Using my right arm I texted a couple of friends for support, including my sister.  Her very kind reply was something like “I’m busy. Quit being a pu**y”  Yeah, I can always count on my dear sister to pick me up when I’m down.

10 to 15 minutes passed and the needle came out. My breathing rate went back to normal.  I was given oj and Oreos, yummie; as well as a water bottle to keep hydrated.  Also, a nice gentleman shared some blood donating facts with me:
– RI needs 285 pints of blood per day
– One pint (which is what you give as a donor) could save 3 lives
– Colleges and Universities are among their best sources of donations during the academic year; Summer is much slower.
– Donors can give blood every 8 weeks.

I was sent off with  instructions to stay hydrated, keep the bandage on for 4 hours, not smoke or drink alcohol until I had a good meal.  Above all I had a sense of pride for facing one of my big fears in order to help others. 

Care to share your blood donating/fear of needles anecdotes?