Friday, February 26, 2010

Missing Sunsets

Those of you who've been with me for a while may remember that my sister, Laura, was a performer like me. Actually, all of the Donnelly children were no strangers to the stage, but Laura and I took that next step and each chose theater as our major when we entered college. Laura attended the prestigious Northwestern University near Chicago, I honed my craft at Syracuse University. But each summer during our college years, both of were reunited in Warsaw, Indiana to perform Summer Stock at a terrific theater named Wagon Wheel Playhouse. There we are at "The Wheel" in the picture to the left.  I'm the one sitting, revealing my enormous thighs, Laura's standing behind me.

Wagon Wheel was an awesome place to apply the skills we'd been honing all year in school.  And we put on some really fantastic, high quality shows, if I do say so myself!! During my three years there, I appeared in musicals such as "Annie," "Music Man," "A Chorus Line," "Girl Crazy," and many, many others!  It was hard work, but we truly loved every minute of it.  To this day, I'll never be able to figure out how we managed to rehearse a show all day, break for dinner, then perform a different musical that evening.  Each show ran two weeks, and we did about six shows every summer.  Ah, the energy of youth!!

At the end of the summer, I'd tearfully hug my sister and fellow performers goodbye and we'd all head back to our respective schools to begin the next collegiate year.

But after all three of the summers I performed at Wagon Wheel, I confess I never got used to that first day back, sitting in my dorm room, gazing out the window, and experiencing twilight again.

When you're a performer, your call times are usually one half hour before show start.  However, if you're a girl, and you have make-up, hair, false eyelashes, and spandex tights to deal with, you arrive at the theater at least one hour before the curtain rises.   Hence, for the entire summer, I had not witnessed one single sunset.  I was always in my dressing room at the theater.  You know that awesome time of day when the daylight is just starting to fade, when the fireflies are beginning to warm up, and the birds are hanging out at the feeder for one more pre-nightfall snack?  I missed ALL of that for three solid months.

I never even realized I missed it until that Fall, back on campus.  Then, I couldn't get enough of it!  Even now, all these years later, when I start to see the light outside start to fade, I always think of Wagon Wheel Playhouse, and the fantastic job that inadvertently made me appreciate sunsets!!

What's your favorite time of day? Early morning with a cup of coffee? Afternoon nap time?  Tell me!  Let's bond!!  And, of course,

Thanks for Reading!!

74 comments:

Margaret (Peggy or Peg too) said...

Wine on the deck overlooking the water at sunset number 1....but a very close 2nd is very early morning sunrise when the water is so calm and it's so quiet with my coffee....the only thing that stops that from being number 1 is the damn chirping birds.

Your friend the curmudgeon.
:-)

Erin said...

First of all, I think your thighs are just splendid.

Second, I MISS fireflies!! They are only up north and there are so many "outdoorsy" nights that I wish I were in PA or upstate NY seeing fireflies!

And third, (and I don't know why I'm numbering them . . . ) My favorite time of day is twilight as well. But I think of the beach. I feel like one of the only times I really go out to see the sunset is when I'm vacationing with family at the beach. It makes me think of sitting on a deck chair or on the sand with my entire family gazing at the sky, smelling the salty air and hearing the sea gulls. Ahhhhhhh! I wish I were there right now!

Great post!

Taylor-Made Wife said...

Awesome post. We so often take advantage of the beauty God has laid before us. I think I prefer twilight. But there is nothing like being on a morning run outside and watching the sun come up! Thanks so much for the wonderful reminder to slow down and appreciate things.

Melissa @ Cellulite Investigation said...

First off, yay for unabashed thigh baring! Now to your question. My favorite time of day is when I walk the dog around the neighborhood on a quiet weekend morning, especially Sundays. So much potential in the air.

john Davis said...

i love sunday mornings over hot coffee and begging dogs

Chloe said...

I love the sunset, but basically I love the afternoon when I'm going home after a hard day at work.

Darlene said...

I think that is so neat that you were in all of those plays. I could NEVER have gotten on a stage and performed like that....too shy. My daughter, Lexi though LOVES it! She has been in two summer plays so far. Aladdin and Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory....she had a small solo and a few lines in Willie Wonka. She LOVES it and I hope will continue it.

I actually have two favorite times of day. In the early mornings in Spring....sitting outside on my porch swing drinking coffee and listening to everything wake up. Also, summertime sunsets and seeing the fireflies and that perfect time of day. GREAT post as always!!!♥

Yankee Girl said...

Enormous thighs? You HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING. They looked so sexy!

What a beautiful sunset! It has been awhile since I have seen a really good one...probably because it's winter and they don't really seem to exist in winter.

Bossy Betty said...

I am a morning person. Oh I am, I am, I am. I make people really sick with my energy in the morning. Loved your observations here!

Blackberry Jam Cafe said...

Glad I found you! Now following from Friday Follow - hope you'll drop by soon!
Susan
www.BlackberryJamCafe.blogspot.com

"And so our stories go..." said...

I love sunrises...they are the best.
Mary

Kaloula said...

I love a good sunrise or sunset, but my favorite is when I can sleep until I'm finished sleeping, i.e. no rude alarm clock interrupting my dreams, so right around 10am, drinking coffee, reading blogs is my favorite!

I am Harriet said...

Hi there.
Love your blog name.
Stopping by from Friday Followers to say hello.
Have a great day!
http://harrietandfriends.com/2010/02/sex-addiction-whats-next-shopping-chocolate-and-baseball-addictions/

THE OLD GEEZER said...

Early morning with a cup of coffee. I love the mornings!

When you are in the 'sunset' years of life, like The Old Geezer,
everyday God gives me is special.

I'll take morning, noon or night, it's all good to me but morning is my favorite.

Have a great weekend Joan,

Ron

Ian said...

Mornings are my favorite...yeah I know, in the minority. And what's all this talk about thighs? Makin me hungry for some fried chicken!

We live in a Zoo! said...

Mornings are my favorite. Especially in the summertime when its warm before the sun rises. I love to sit out on my back porch and watch as the light slowly gets brighter as the sun rises from behind the mountain that sits practically in my back yard.

Sara @ Domestically Challenged said...

WOnderful look back. I would have loved to see you perform. And the beauty of sunsets? THanks for the reminder!

Sylvia K said...

Great post! And it did bring back so many memories! I belonged to an acting group in Dallas, Texas years ago and performed almost nightly -- on top of my day job! But it was fabulous. When I decided to return to college and get my degree I paid for it by performing in a musical review six nights a week! Looking back I can't imagine where I got that much energy!!! But it was fun! So, thanks for the memories. Love your pics, would love to have seen you perform. And, yes, when we get too busy we miss so much of the beauty. I love the dawn, but sunsets are probably my favorite as anyone who visits my blog has probably discovered! Hope you have a terrific weekend!

Sylvia

Betty Manousos:cutand-dry.blogspot.com said...

I love the dawn, so promising and welcoming!
Hope your day is a nice one so far!
Betty xx

lifeshighway said...

An evening ride on my horse squeezing a few more minutes in the daylight before I have to go back to the barn.

Spot On Your Pants said...

Now, the three times I've experienced the exact moment birds start to sing for the day. If you've never heard them wake up, do it before you die!

Juliana said...

I wish more people would stop and look around that the beauty we are surrounded by on a daily basis My favorite time of day is Twilight. To be exact---the moment when day and night meet in that perfect moment.

KathyB said...

OK, you have GOT to get over this thigh thing. You look like a million bucks in that picture! (and I've never seen that pic before! next time I'm at your house you have to break out the Wagon Wheel pics for me to see) I totally loved reading this, Joan. So much fun. If I actually get up in time to leisurely enjoy it, I think I like mornings best. The whole "new-ness" thing gets me every time. :)

Heather McDougle said...

I'm following you from Friday Follow!
Heather
http://www.ratherbechangingdiapers.com/

Loving Wife, Working Mom said...

This may sound cheesy, but it is true... my favorite time of the day is kissing my kids goodnight... especially if they put their around me and ask me to stay for a minute...Triple bonus if I get to smell the soap on their necks when we cuddle.

Allison said...

That is a beautiful picture, so I see what you're talking about. I've never actually thought of a favorite time of the day before. It's definitely not morning though. You seem to have such an interesting past!

pixie13 said...

Dropping by from Friday Follow & now following you. My favorite time of day is the middle of the night when the rest of the world is sleeping. Have a lovely weekend!

Valerie said...

Always have loved the theater and use to act all the time with my siblings but that was it. My daughter grew to love theater and did performances in high school. Went on to major in Drama in college and did performances then too. Every chance we get we go to the theater - just love it!

My favorite time of day is sunset too. I just enjoy it. By that time I am home and that is my favorite place to be!

Wanted to thank you for stopping by last week for Friday Follow. Sorry it took me all week to get to stop by here. I hope you have a blessed weekend!

Denise said...

My favorite time of the day is sunrise, there's a glow over everything that is just magical. Don't get to see it too often - I am a night owl not a morning person but when I am on vacation I'm an early riser and never miss it. One time in the Grand Teton I sat on the patio with a cup of coffee, saw the sunrise over the mountains and heard the wolves howling in the distance. A memory that will stay with me the rest of my life. Enjoyed your tale about the Wagon Wheel, sounds like so much fun and a lot of wonderful memories there. I look forward to reading more. Thanks for visiting my blog and have a great weekend.

Mommyof2girlz said...

Thanks for stopping by today, love the name of your blog, it through me for a lop at first..lol Following :)

Eva Gallant said...

Sounds like you two had some great times! I love the photos. My favortie time of day is early morning...love the peacefulness of the house before hubby wakes up and turns on the tv!

Rhonda (a.k.a. The Restless Squaw) said...

I'm right there with ya on the 'running to keep my dress size in single digits.' Keep running, friend.

Friday following you, too...

Snow White's Blog Shop! said...

Following you back from Friday Follow! Have a great weekend!

Cathy ♥ Snow White's Blog Shop!

Sir Thomas AKA (Winters Reaper) said...

*smiles* you do this to me....

Misty said...

thanks for following me! and the wonderful comment. looking forward to checking out your blog. now following you too!
-Misty

Midday Escapades said...

Thanks for linking up with Friday Follow! I am now your blog follower. Have a wonderful weekend and pleasure to meet ya.

~ Lynn
http://www.middayescapades.com

p.s. You certainly have an interesting blog name! Love your cute header.

Kiera said...

isn't it so funny looking backwards? we never realized who we were til later!

i dont know what my fav time of day is. i love cold s[ring mornings when the sun is shining... but i know that s just my st pattys day itch!

AJ said...

Hello, visiting from one of the dozens of blogs I've seen you comment on... and finally decided to click over. Since we apparently run in the same blog circles

:) I love looking back on things I took for granted... my favorite time of the day is 8pm. Because I am selfish.

That's when my kids go to bed.

Jean said...

Although I am particularly fond of my afternoon nap days I do have to admit that sunset is my favorite time of day....especially in the summer. There is nothing like a beautifully lit orange/red sky and the fact that you may have to throw on a light sweater. I appreciate that quiet time of day when the rest of your day might be filled with so much hustle and bustle.

Great post!!!

xo

ReformingGeek said...

I love sunsets and sunrises when I'm awake enough to enjoy them. Midday is when I feel I'm at my best, though!

rxBambi said...

although I'm going to be a bit of a follower and say sunset at the pool with a glass of wine, I also really like 9am. I've found, thru much trial and error, that 9am is the perfect time for me. I learn the best, I workout better at that time, it's just "my" time. If I miss a 9am work-out chances are it wont get done.

Oh, and 1pm naps.. especially if it's raining.

great post!

Nicole Bouchard Boles said...

Thanks for the follow. Great blog! Now following you :)

http://www.frugalphilanthropist.blogspot.com

Heff said...

Oh, this blog is CUTE !

Stop by MY place....if you DARE !

Helena said...

Well, thanks for asking about my favorite time of day because it gives me time for pause! I think I love the early mornings when no one else is stirring b/c then I have time to just do anything I want and usually the things I want to do early in the morning are productive, unlike late at night when I am more of a time-waster and lollygagger! I love both sunrises and sunsets and I'm glad that you can now enjoy a beautiful sunset and also reminisce about those times when energy was abundant and regret was scarce!

RN Mama said...

I loved this post. A great reminder to cherish the little things we sometimes take for granted.

Leeuna said...

Twilight and sunsets are extremely beautiful, but for some reason they make me sad. I guess I just don't like endings, even happy ones.

My favorite time of day is sunrise while sitting on my front porch with my coffee and my dogs.

Fantastic thighs by-the-way. Not enormous at all.

Tracie said...

I'm an early morning person. But I really enjoy any time of day that I can get some peace and quiet.

...Mrs.P! said...

I love sunset too! But a nice sunrise on a crisp autumn or spring morning, when the fog is hovering over the ground, is pretty gorgeous too!

The Redhead Riter said...

I love the sunshine all the time!

You have received something special at my blog posting

http://theredheadriter.blogspot.com/2010/02/angel-mothers-bringing-beautiful.html

I hope you have a great weekend.

Being Me said...

Oooh I think I am about to be commenter #50 whom you are going to 'bond' with over time-of-day-preference!

I loved this post, wow, what a talented woman you are! My fave time of day is early, early morning - when the sky looks pretty much like your sunset shot in this post, actually - the freshness and the untold lessons of that day as yet unrealised. I really have always loved mornings best :)

alexa - cleveland's a plum said...

I spent my summers and many years pre college performing musicals some of my favorite memories!

marla {family fresh cooking} said...

Lets see um. "M" Street, "The Dome," "Armory Square." amazing snow storms & gorgeous sunsets! I too am a grad of Syracuse. Grad '92. Those were some really great times.
You story here is so thoughtful with so many great memories! My favorite time of day is very early morning, I wake at 4am to get a few hours to myself. Love a big quiet breakfast, a piping hot cup of coffee and creative blogging time.

Angela said...

Following back... I have two favorite times of day. Morning with my cup of Joe, the kids are all nice and rested. I also love night time, when kids are in bed and hubby and I can have some "alone time".

Angela
http://debatethisponderthat.blogspot.com/

Ottavia said...

I would have to say morning dawn is my favourite. Its the most peaceful time of the day!

christy rose said...

I love the morning with a great cup of coffee to start the day.

S.L.N. said...

Sunrise- although I am the farthest thing from a morning person, the few times that I am out the door that early for a run, well, it's breath taking.

arlee bird said...

Sunrise, sunset --- love them both, but I guess over all I would opt for sunset since I'm usually more laid back by then.
Lee

Shan said...

I am just up for the colors of the sky... no particular time of day. Early mornings and early evenings might be best, but I can usually find something to appreciate regardless.

Red Shoes said...

Hmmm... favorite time of day...

I think maybe it depends on the season... and where I am... when in the mountains, I love sunsets... at the beach I love sunrises...

Here in the Mississippi Delta, I love it when thunderstorms are developing to the West... I can either have a glass of wine or a cup of coffee and watch the storms intensify as they move this way... and I love the intensity of the wind, thunder, and lightning as they move through...

~shoes~

Kellyansapansa said...

Wow, you have led such an interesting life!

I'm so pleased to see that you have so many followers and are receiving so many comments. Your blog is absolutely delightful to read and you are a beautiful person. xx

GregoryJ said...

I like late afternoon when the sunlight is yellow as it comes in the windows and softly highlights every thing it touches. It's a quiet time between a busy day and a calm evening.

Tammie said...

i find this fascinating because honestly i never really paid much attention to the sunset. but if i didnt see it for three straight months, id probably miss it.

my favorite time of day is probably late night, between the hours of 10-2. but i have to admit that being a mom, i dont get to appreciate my favorite hours much anymore, im usually sleeping. that being said, i love the moment every night when my head hits the pillow and i close my eyes and i dont have to think about a single thing. beautiful. god i love sleep.

and in case you couldnt guess, im not a morning person AT ALL.

Kelly L said...

Great post! My favorite time of day is late in the evening when everyone is bed and all I hear is quite or the dog snoring...

Love to you
Kelly

Helene said...

Oh, my favorite time of the day for sure is after the sun has set and all the kids are in bed!!!

Aside from that, I love sunsets too. In fact, just this evening I called the kids outside to see all the pretty shades of pink and blue in the sky..the moon is full and low too. So beautiful!!

It sounds like you had an amazing experience in the theater! I hope you'll write more about it!!

Rhiannon said...

Your life stories are great to read.

My favourite time of day is the early morning before the sun comes up. I love how quiet and peaceful it is.

MP said...

Great post.

I love the blue hour--that time just between daylight and dusk. It's beautiful.

Miss Go Lightly said...

Awe, I just saw your comment..you are sooo sweet, thank you. That means a lot to me :) Hope you're having a lovely weekend!

Eternally Distracted said...

I'm a sunset girl... I am sure I would love sunrises too but my dreams never allow me to see them!

Melissa said...

Lovely post. I too love twilight. And that moment just before dawn, but as I am not a morning person, I save that one for special occasions!

ascu75 aka Don said...

Sunsets for us too. We will often drive out to catch the sun going down. I love to watch the sun disappear into the sea at the end of a great summers day. We are so blessed to live on the coast. Sometimes we will get a fish n chip supper and eat it watching the sunset.

JenJen said...

I look back on dancing the same way you do on performing as an actress. I have never felt as uplisfted as I did when I was onstage dancing for the crowd. It is an amazing experience!

Cheryl Moore said...

I think your dad must have been a great dad, and it sounds like you had an amazing, supportive, bonded family. Your college days sound incredible. Thank you for sharing your story.

My favorite time of the day is in the summer time at 7:00pm--just before sundown. It's cooled down from the heat of the day, and you're still able to enjoy a couple hours of daylight and not sweat to death. It's just absolutely refreshing and beautiful!

Heatherlyn said...

I love twilight. It's my favorite. Always has been. It's soft warm light with so many colors in the sky. I can't imagine missing it for a summer!!!!!!

Mercy said...

I enjoy the peace and quiet of the morning (with coffee)before my kids wake up...and again in the evening (sometimes with alcohol) after they are in bed. Those are the best times.

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