Tuesday, October 19, 2010

thank you for visiting...

...but please visit the new site; emilysparkles.com! There you will find NEW posts and --wait for it-- EVERY post within this site is over there, too!

See you there! :)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Shoes, Camera, ACTION.

I have the most amazing best friend in the world. Not only is she a tried & true friend, and also the best at making me laugh, but she is a line-pushing, mind-blowing artist. Who is this lady? Keelia Paulsen, the genius (and sweat, blood, and tears) behind Khenri. (All of a sudden I'm kind of a big deal, huh?)

Alright, clean the drool off of your keyboards (we all drool when staring at fashion, it's okay.)

So Khenri has been getting press weekly for at LEAST a couple of months now. To keep the momentum going, and thanks to the brilliance of videographer and Paulsen pal Robert Whicker, a promotional video for Khenri was conceived! Staying true to her DeMo roots, Keelia recruited clients and twitter friends (and me..or did I recruit myself? hmm...) to be the models for this video. Of course I was on board, and this past Sunday afternoon we all convened at the undeniably gorgeous Halo Salon for le shoot!

The lovely models (Macy, Meghan, Ariel, Nicole, and yours truly) all donned are basic black dresses and gasped in awe at the treasure chest of Khenri footwear that Keelia had brought for the occasion. (Besides the Khenris we already owned and brought ourselves. I have 9 pairs total. Not to brag or anything.) Once the camera started rolling, we were ON. Ideas were shot around, shoes were changed and changed again (seriously, talk about the royal treatment!), and the fun never stopped. It was actually as good of a balance of professionalism and fun as I have seen, ever.

From Halo we went on to the unbelievably beautiful Salisbury House, and then onward to our beloved East Village. (FYI, and this is from the girl who sprints in heels, but walking the stairs up to the top of the Historical Building in this weather? Yeah.) After one last shot in one of our city's many charming alleyways, we headed back to HQ at Halo for champagne and Twilight Dark Godiva chocolate. (Said chocolate is in no way affiliated with the series that should not be named.) (If it were I wouldn't eat it.)

Macy, Meghan, Ariel, Nicole -- you girls are lovely and it was SO much fun working with you. Nicole; VERY glad the iPhone is okay. ;)
Robert -- I hope you are as proud of your work as you should be; I had high expectations and you blew them clear away. You have a phenomenal eye and the skill to make it work.
and Keelia -- suck my sparkle. WHAT!! ((you surprise me every day with your creativity and your drive for life; you are the most balanced person i know {fact}, and you make me want to be a better person, too. I am so so proud of you, and very blessed to call you friend. I love you!))

AND NOW!! the video :)

Khenri-Final from Robert Whicker on Vimeo.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Rock & Runway Model Search!

Tonight was the first annual Pulse 99.5 model search for our up and coming Rock & Runway fashion show! The word had been spread on-air, on facebook, on twitter, and on the lips of many of DeMo's finest; the turn out proved it! The models-in-waiting started pulling up to Fox Creek Center early, setting the tone for one heckuva fun night!

As hoped for, a wide variety of ages and looks were represented by the brave Pulse listeners who showed up to strut their stuff on our runway. After handing in their paperwork, getting their measurements and a head shot taken, the auditonees waited for the action to begin.

In charge of the event was our Rock & Runway choreographer and model recruiter Karena Steir. And when Karena is in the room, nothing less than high energy will do! The models did a few trial runs on the runway before the real auditions began.

Once the auditions were officially underway, the Pulse music started pumping (everything from Family Force Five to Skillet) and the models got going. First they worked the runway commercial style, and by the end the ladies and gents were bringing the fun by singing along, throwing out dance moves, and even high kicking to beat the band. The next round was editorial, and although much more serious, the auditionees kept the energy high by powerfully working that runway and smiling and laughing while waiting their turn.

After the try outs were done, the models talked amongst themselves and I had a chance to chat and share in the fun with a few. Overheard were things that make me, as part of the Rock & Runway committee, melt inside; "I don't even care if I get picked, that was FUN!" I even got a lesson in moonwalking from one of the girls who - you guessed it - moonwalked on the runway. Awesome.

A huge thank you to everyone who helped make the model auditions happen! If you tried out: be proud; you're beautiful, courageous, and fun! And for those who are part of the Rock & Runway process; let's keep the momentum going! This show is going to be LEGENDARY! :)

Monday, July 5, 2010

Jehovah Jireh :: my provider

Rolling, verdant countryside does indeed exist. Even in West Des Moines, Iowa. Gently sloping hills dusted with waving trees; inhabited by blue and gold swallows and any number of other aviary companions providing a sweet soundtrack to the peaceful view. The raucous summer skyline shimmering overhead is never boring.
This is the view when I step outside of my new office.
This is but one part of the blessing of this new career.

I’m in sales; terrifying yet not. When I look at it from one perspective I see myself as accomplishing quite close to nothing thus far. (It’s my second day if you’re wondering.) When I look at it from that painful, twisted angle of objectivity to self… I’m kind of proud. Or at least satisfied. Multiple phone calls have been made and one sponsor for an upcoming event secured. This is GREAT… but I’ve never been one to focus on what I’m doing RIGHT. *sigh*

Some ponderings:
I am amazed at how so far the grand majority of the calls I have made have been received positively. The calls may not have resulted in dollars (yet) but the people themselves are still wonderful. God is absolutely giving me the fortitude to face strangers in this way. To ask them for donations; of time, money, and open ears. It’s quite scary. But with His help, by leaving it in His hands… so far, so GRAND. 

I’m at Mars CafĂ© right now. The people are diversity defined… and man, people are BEAUTIFUL. All of them. Wow.
{{end sidebar}}

A dear friend and mentor told me that she thought this job was going to change my life. Not just because of new skills or the increased earning potential, but in a wholistic way. I think she may be right…

Since I started writing this post over a week ago, God has been pretty in my face about just how much He cares about my life/me. How much He cares about EVERY detail. Examples to follow:

• Computers. Of course we think we cannot live without them. For the past four years I’ve been using an hp notebook that has gotten the job done, Windows Vista and all. Well, a year ago it crashed like a boat on dry land after virus overload but thanks to Geek Squad it was fine again. Lately she’s been acting up. My virus protection just expired and since the majority of my internet usage is done from coffee shop public wifi, I suppose that could be an issue. I’d finally warmed up to the idea of becoming a Mac, but due to ridiculous financial constraints, just threw a Mac book on the wish list in my mind. Cut to Tuesday. Sales meeting, staff meeting, and then the boss requested a one-on-one. Mundane, yes? NO. He hands me a powerbook G4. (these terms still mean nothing to me by the way.) “Here you go.” That was it. I hope I thanked him adequately, but frankly I was dumbstruck. Perhaps a better computer was a bigger deal than I realized, perhaps God just likes to give; regardless of why, new computer? DONE.

• Cell phone. Yep; another form of technology that we cannot live without. Especially as someone in sales, who is juggling quite a few eggs in that one cellular basket. Especially as someone whose boyfriend is out of state for the week. My Pre had been acting up lately, as most technology that dares to be close to me inevitably does. Last Tuesday night as I drove to VBS at Freedom for Youth the phone DIED. I’m not talking about a dead battery. I’m talking about it being physically impossible to turn it back on again for a multitude of reasons. I panicked, naturally. But went to VBS and loved those kids and had fun nonetheless. Afterwards, at 8 pm or so, jumped in that car and drove off to the nearest Best Buy (wdm location—they are AWESOME) to put that priceless Black Tie Protection to use. Long story short, had to send the Pre off and snag a loaner phone. Long story short, I had $130 in cash to my name. THAT WAS IT. The loaner phone fee, as I learned after they set it up, as I learned after 9pm when the store technically closes, comes to $159 after tax. I explained my situation, decided that somehow I’d make life work sans phone… and then the clerks and manager simply over-rode the price (as it’s refunded in the end anyway) so that the loaner phone total came to $129.42. HOLY CRAP. God is good.

• Now, if you are still reading this, I love you. Also, you may have noticed that I just spent all abut 68 cents on a phone. I was now BROKE. (not counting my pile of debt, of course.) It was Tuesday night. Payday was Friday…. Thursday at the very soonest. I was low on gas. Low on everything, really. Crap. I drove home from Best Buy praying fervently; tearfully; a mixture of ecstatic gratitude for God’s provision and numbing fear over being without monitary means. The answer came clearly and immediately, although it took me a few hours to accept it. “Wait through Wednesday.” I was offered money that night by someone quite sweet, and was torn over accepting it. **See below for my philosophy on why we must accept help. But still the Voice said, “Wait through Wednesday.” Cut to Wednesday morning… and my boss coming in with my first paycheck.

Jehovah Jireh; my provider!!

**From my devotional today, that freaked me out in an awesome way and also convicted me to finish writing this post:

Excerpt from My Utmost for His Highest/Oswald Chambers; “The Habit of Wealth.”

“…the first habit to form is the habit of realizing the provision God has made. ‘Oh, I can’t afford it,’ we say – one of the worst lies is tucked up in that phrase. It is ungovernably bad taste to talk about money in the natural domain, and so it is spiritually, and yet we talk as if our Heavenly Father had cut us off with a shilling! We think it a sign of real modesty to say at the end of a day – ‘Oh, well, I have just got through, but it has been a severe tussle.’ And all the Almighty God is ours in Lord Jesus! And He will tax the last grain of sand and the remotest star to bless us if we will obey Him. What does it matter if external circumstances are hard? Why should they not be! If we give way to self-pity and indulge in the luxury of misery, we banish God’s riches from our own lives and hinder others from entering into His provision. No sin is worse than the sin of self-pity, because it obliterates God and puts self-interest on the throne. It opens our mouths to spit out murmurings and our lives become craving spiritual sponges, there is nothing lovely or generous about them.”

Friday, June 18, 2010

This song.... & today.

Again {Flyleaf}

I love the way that your heart breaks
with every injustice and deadly fate
Praying it all be new
and living like it all depends on you

Here you are down on your knees again
trying to find air to breathe again
And only surrender will help you now
I love you please see and believe again

I love that you’re never satisfied
with face value wisdom and happy lies
you take what they say and go back and cry
you’re so close to me that you nearly died

Here you are down on your knees again
trying to find air to breathe again
And only surrender will help you now
I love you please see and believe again

they don’t have to understand you
be still
wait and know I understand you
be still
be still

Here you are down on your knees again
trying to find air to breathe again
Only surrender will help you now
The floodgates are breaking
they're pouring out

Here you are down on your knees
trying to find air to breathe
right where I want you to be again
i love you please see and believe again

Here you are down on your knees again
trying to find air to breathe again
Right where I want you to be again
See and believe!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Joyful Uncertainty

From My Utmost for His Highest:

“We are not uncertain of God, but uncertain of what He is going to do next.
If we are only certain in our beliefs, we get dignified and severe and have the ban of finality about our views; but when we are rightly related to God,
life is full of spontaneous, joyful uncertainty and expectancy.” (emphasis mine)

I have a new job. I have been looking for a new job for months. Actively. Utilizing connections; creating connections! I was not alone; one of my dearest friends and coworkers was in the same boat. This job hunt, while devastating, drew us closer together. A blessing. Together we would pray for the search, proofread and even rewrite cover letters, send emails full of potential future jobs. Three of the number of our “allies” left during these months for their new careers. Were it not for this friend, and her Godly influence (peppered heavily with snarky understanding,) I would have been much more desperate; not “joyful” in my uncertainty; not expectant. Like most trying periods of life, I am very grateful that I was forced to the decision of whether I would rely more heavily on God or if I would abandon myself to my own meager resources. And that I chose the former.

The old job was full of corruption. I wish I could say I rose above it, but far too often I gave in to the atmosphere and returned cattiness with cattiness; game for game. I did not stoop to deceit. But the longer I remained the harder it was for me to *love* those who were having affairs, abusing substances, and lying habitually. I judged them. I made less and less of an effort to be a light. Often during my search I wondered if God was punishing me for this behavior… that common tit-for-tat picture of The Almighty being allowed room to roam.

Somewhere, I wish I could pinpoint the moment… although I know I wavered from time to time… but the moment when I gave in. Instead of praying for this or that job application to be noticed and get results, I began to pray “Lord, if you want me to stay here, I will.” That’s it. And I began to relax. “Be Still” is a command that I have to remind myself of quite often when it comes to the relationship with Him. It’s not a suggestion; it is a command. It is perhaps one of the best to test if you doubt His desire to grant you what is best for you. In this case, it brought peace. It brought the ability to fulfill my job’s expectations beyond just getting by. It brought freedom to experience that “joyful uncertainty and expectancy!”

The changes began to bleed outside of the work life; perhaps it has something to do with the work life not mattering so much? I began exercising again, but less strictly. I began eating better. I began seeking out time spent with friends on weeknights instead of a routine of isolation at home. There has got to be some connection.

I knew that taking better care of me would result in feeling better about me; that was no shocker.

What I had forgotten was how letting people in can transform your life. Yes, it complicates it. However, it’s still easier to carry a one-ton load with assistance than it is to carry a quarter-ton load alone. Or something like that. :)

Entering into situations without presuming to know what the outcome will be has never been my strength. Tell me the upcoming event and I will plan out at least 2 possible outcomes. The more time I have to plan the more long term I will go with possible consequences, be they good or bad. The more connections/reasons I will draw. The more I will raise either my fears or my hopes.

The new job I have, while in a different form of broadcasting, is in broadcasting still. From the moment I had an interview my mind went to the hopeful route of “so THIS is why I’ve been working in broadcasting these 2 years!” Thankfully I had friends to keep me grounded without dashing my hopes. Thankfully during the strange delays of the process, I’d let people in enough to begin to listen when they said I have more to offer than I believe.
Thankfully God gave me this job for HIS reasons and not my own.

These days I feel differently than I have for the past few months.
Some days, I feel like George Costanza; I will do the exact opposite of everything I feel I should and somehow things just work out.
Some days, I’m waiting for the other shoe to fall.
Some days, I’m just plain *happy*.
Some days, I can’t even think in one single stream of consciousness for the wonder of Christ overwhelms me.
Some days, I’m terrified and doubt myself on every front.
And some days… some days I just GET it... that life is taken one step at a time, regardless of the future steps I lay out mentally.
And that He always gives me “just enough light for the step I’m on.”

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Getting Lazy

Why yes it HAS been a long time since I have blogged. {punching myself in the face.}

To catch up on things in the easiest (read: laziest) way possible, here are some things I've seen and enjoyed over the past month... {in no particular order.}

Tip: more fun if you click on the links!

1. 40 baby geese. Or goslings, if you want to be pretentious.

2. A moonlit bike trail, a forest whipping by, and friends completing the ambiance.

3. Productivity and dedication that gets results.

4. The power of He who answers prayers.

5. New beginnings; new careers.

6. The Power of Love.

7. The Good Samaritan; two off-duty Ankeny police officers changing my flat tire on the side of 235.

8. A package of peanut butter m&m's on the seat of a car.

9. God's timing. This number deserves an entry all to it's self... hopefully quite soon. :)

10. Tony Stark.

Hmmmm.... Tony Stark.... Oh! Sorry. Well; this is a meager attempt at an update.
Truth be told, so very very much has happened... and sometimes, especially when matters of the heart and matters requiring professional discretion are involved, it's just not possible to share all that I dearly wish I could.