Photo by 04deveni
This time next week I’ll be cruisin’ with Pete Wilson, Michael and Gail Hyatt, Ken Davis, Randy and Chris Elrod and a host of others on a Caribbean cruise for Christian creatives. We’ll be sailing aboard the Celebrity Century after departing from Miami. Our stops include Ocho Rios, Jamaica and George Town, Grand Cayman. The theme of the cruise is “The Creative Life” and it’s for worship leaders, book authors, recording artists, graphic artists and bloggers. 4 out of 5 ain’t bad, so I thought it would be a good fit.
- The Creative Life: How We Work
- The Creative Life: How We Worship
- The Creative Life: How We Love
- The Creative Life: How We Enjoy
I am so pumped to have such a unique opportunity to connect with this group and spend a week reflecting and growing. It’ll be my first time on a cruise as well, so I’m looking forward to a new adventure … I only with you were going with me!
It’s no secret I’m a fan of Michael McDonald. I have been since college and anytime I get a chance to go see him – well, I jump at it. I realize that when I go to shows, I pull down the median age by like 20 years. It’s okay. I embrace it.
He came through town this weekend and played at the Hard Rock Cafe. Last time Jeff and I saw him it was at the Ford Amphitheater in Tampa like three years ago or so. He was too far away. I didn’t like it.
Saturday was much better.
We had fourth row center stage tickets and we could see the spit and sweat fly. Now that’s more like it.
Mountain of mashed potatoes
We made a date night out of it, eating beforehand at J.Alexander’s. It was Jeff’s first time eating there and my first time at that location. It was DI-VINE! It was a great, relaxing precursor to the show.
We walked through Universal Citywalk – stopping for some TCBY on our way to the theater. Three lines snaked into the building, slowed by security guards checking purses. One remarked that there wasn’t much to worry about – this was a “bathing & washing crowd.” I loved that. And yet – they kept the signs up that says no moshing or crowd surfing. Hey, you never know … Lionel Richie reminded us to dance on the ceiling instead.
Dancing on the ceiling
Jeff texted a teacher friend of his whom he knew was coming to the show and it ended up she had seats two down from ours. So that was cool. The folks sitting directly next to us were so chill and kind. We chatted it up a bit before the show, comparing how many times we had seen Michael in concert. Of course I beat that competition hands down. This was their first show. I told her about seeing him in Tampa, Nashville and Vegas, and how when he’s on the road he tends to gain weight. When he’s off, he trims up. My neighbor joked and asked, “Is this the beginning of the tour or the end?”
As we’re chatting and waiting for the show to start, a white-headed man comes to the piano, making last-minute adjustments. People start cheering. I look at my neighbor friend and say, “That’s not him, is it?” “Can’t be,” she says. This exchange happens at least three more times as this guy keeps coming out with the crew, tinkering with stuff. Although he’s got the white hair, the frame is totally different – and he’s about 100 pounds lighter. There’s no way! But it had to be him! Who else could it be? It was too dark to decipher. All four of us went back and forth. If that was him he looks way too thin. Is he sick? Is he okay? There were so many questions…..
….Until the lights came on and he came out in all his regular-sized glory. Michael McDonald would not be Michael McDonald without his black T-shirt, jeans and some padding. He’s like comfort food. We need him to be that way. Please don’t ever change.
Middle aged women getting a little fiesty
He started the show on a somber note – dedicating the evening to a fan who had become a friend who passed away recently. He sang “Peace,” which is on his Christmas album and one of my favorite songs of his. I love that Michael’s not afraid to pepper in his faith into his songs and set lists. He began his encore with an instrumental of “Amazing Grace.” Last time we saw him he tore up Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.”
Me and my new Warby Parker glasses, with Michael on stage
Speaking of songwriters, Michael McDonald is the songwriter’s songwriter. He always gives credit to songwriters and is always quick to share the stage and the credit with other musicians and singers. I remember getting his DVD once and being disappointed that he wasn’t in it more – he readily gives up his platform to highlight the talents of others. We should all be so generous with ours.
It was a great crowd and a great show and I was thankful for the chance to go.
Who’s your favorite artist to see in concert?
Jeff and I went to the Derek Webb House Show at Relevant last Thursday. It was great seeing old friends and hearing some great tunes.
The folks there seemed like uber fans. One guy behind us had his head resting against the wall, eyes closed, mouthing every word….another guy had his legs wrapped around his girl in the floor. Another guy got really excited when Derek mentioned going to Texas. I’m not hatin. It was just a funny crowd. Jeff & me included.
I even met two podcast listeners who have been fans since I was part of it. We took a pic together below. Jeff and I capped our rare evening out with a banana pudding shake from Chickfila. Mmm.
In my attempt to fix more ‘square’ meals, I fried pork chops tonight. I was mortified when blood began oozing from the bone marrow. #whyidontcookmeat
Friday, March 4, is National Pound Cake Day – it’s centered on the tradition that for every pound cake you bake, you give one away.
I love that.
I also love pound cake. So much that I’m starting a blog dedicated to the subject (http://www.princesspoundcake.com).
I’m launching it on National Pound Cake Day, because what better day to do it?
I’m also centering the blog on the same premise – for every pound cake I make, I’ll give one away.
Join me on this journey by subscribing to the RSS feed (you can enter your email address on the right-hand sidebar on the site and subscribe through FeedBurner).
Let’s bake something good together!
Coming up in just the first couple of weeks: Paula Deen’s Pound Cake, Nutella Pound Cake, Mini Lemon Pound Cakes, Blueberry Sour Cream Pound Cake and Chocolate Pound Cake!