It’s been an…interesting…week. To say the least.  So many feelings are happening right now.

I am not sure how this managed to transpire, but twice this week there has been tragic news: Monday was the passing of my friend Elana. Friday being the horrific, mind-bogglingly devastating school shooting in Newton, Connecticut. I will write more on the latter if I can wrap my mind around it and make sense of it at all.

Yet somehow, in the wake of sadness, there were holiday parties happening on Monday and on Friday.

Is it the universe saying:

A) Live life, smile, appreciate what you have? 

B) Life is a big yin and yang, with constant contradictions and opposites?

C) Just an odd coincidence? 

I am tempted to say:

D) All of the above. 

Monday night our fabulous friends Jerry Jay and Dana hosted a festive holiday soirée. i swear some day I want to be a person who can pull off a fabulous party, with cute table decor and a themed menu. Right now I am a pro at making guacamole, cheese and crackers and asking people to bring their own booze. I mean would you look at this table? Fan-freakin-tastic.

party table

A tree of Santa Mugs...every party needs one.

A tree of Santa Mugs…every party needs one.

Men with striped shirts and plaid ties. I swear this wasn't planned.

Men with striped shirts and plaid ties. I swear this wasn’t planned.

We are dark, but would you look at that RED CHRISTMAS TREE?

We are dark, but would you look at that RED CHRISTMAS TREE?

Then yesterday, Jürgen and I got to play hosts of an “Ugly Holiday Sweater Party” at our house. I baked six types of cookies for the occasion. Yes, those cookies I was whining about…they all got made. Funny how that happens.

cookies on table

(Front to Back/ Left to Right) Lemon Bars, Oatmeal Butterscotch, Cinnamon Pecan, Almond Crescents, English Toffee and Toll House

I looked at two Wal-Mart’s and a Goodwill before finding two horrendous sweaters at Boomerang, a local vintage store. If you ever find yourself in Kansas City and in need of an Ugly Holiday Sweater, look no further than Boomerang, they have you covered. Believe me.

Please ignore my face. This is what they call "post-show makeup"

Please ignore my face. This is what they call “post-show makeup”

After our show the entire cast and crew descended on our house for some positive holiday cheer after a day of tragic news. Although to be honest the days events dominated a lot of the conversation. Some of us even stayed up until 2 a.m discussing it. But we did manage to have fun, which I think is important.  Because, even when bad things happen if you don’t allow fun in your life then pictures like this can’t happen…

Be still my heart. I mean...could you just die? Where can I buy one?

Be still my heart. I mean…could you just die? Where can I buy one?

And these…

group shot

It’s an Ugly Sweater flash mob!

melinda and deroldkathleen and marion

You guys, she may be 84, but Marion Ross can party with the best of em'

You guys, she may be 84, but Marion Ross can party with the best of em’

Cast love.

Cast love.

Tending to his fantastic spiced apple cider.

Tending to his fantastic spiced apple cider.

Everyone voted on who they felt had the best Ugly Sweater and my dressing room-mate, Melinda, took home the prize. A wonderfully tacky, plush Christmas tree which lights up and sings Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree when you push a button. I found it at Walgreens. I was pretty proud of it.

melinda and prize

In the end we had a great time at both soirées, considering the circumstances. I suppose for every dark there must be light. With the comedy comes the tragedy. It’s doesn’t make the pain any less painful or the joy and less joyful. In fact, somehow, they need each other.  We all need each other.

Yesterday an image came to me which brought a smile to my face: Elana up in the sky greeting all of those sweet children with her big brown eyes. Welcoming them in a circle, singing to them and telling them stories.  Comedy and Tragedy.

Happy Weekend All.

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