Kristina Furey

Umbrella

 
Some songs we fall in love with the very first time we hear them. Well I'm guessing you do... I know I certainly do and then I normally wish I wrote it! I have song envy issues... One of those songs for me was "Umbrella" written by Tricky Stewart, Kuk Harrell and Jay-Z and recorded by Rihanna and Mandy Moore. It is listed as #412, in Rolling Stone's "The 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time". I did not know this when local artist Amy Hsieh performed it at a showcase Dan and I set up and hosted at a local venue. I hadn't heard it before and her voicing of the song, along with her acoustic guitar, struck something deep inside me. I asked her later about the song and learned that it was a cover and she had introduced it as such but somehow I had missed the introduction. WOW when she started the song though, she had my full attention! Her style, so perfectly fit it and she really made it her own! I was actually let down when I heard the known Rihanna version. There was so much going on with the rest of the music in it, that the heart of the song was burried and failed to move me the same. Later I discovered Mandy Moore's version, which I like better, it was closer to Amy's version.
I think Amy's version captivated me because it touched me in such a way that I was transported back to a time when I was child and had two foster siblings that I was closer to at the time, than my own blood brothers. It was nostalgic, in that pang in the stomach sort of way. Time stopped for a moment as I fell back into it's worm hole and found myself defender of the underdog on the playground and school bus and as I sat up in bed at night, as my foster sister cried in hers and I tried to console her. My little brother that came to live with us when he was four and stayed for four years, was also tugging at my heart as I listened to the lyrics. Their stories and lives too complex for little children and mine intertwined in there with them. If I had been an adult I would have been able to make a bigger difference but I was the same age as my sister and two years older than my brother, so I could only do what I could do. I tried to mother them I guess, keep them safe under my umbrella, as best I could.
I like songs that cross boundaries, styles and everything else that separates us as people. I like songs that make me feel not so alone in my own feelings, even if the experiences that created those feelings are something someone else may never be able to relate too. I like songs that teach me things I need to know or explain why others think or do so differently than me. I like songs that are politically incorrect, even morally chancie, if they are honest or funny/fun enough to help me let go of my sometimes too deep self. I also, really like the song "Umbrella" and I'm happy to say last night Dan and I began to work on it. :-)
PS- I did upload a video of the song I finally completed last week.  The one I blogged about...  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfZQ2UEFg4U&list=UUPLCm3Z8Xa_yUen2ckAZUTA
 

Writing, rewriting, what I previously wrote

 
I spent the afternoon writing and rewriting a song I previously wrote and rewrote before. Some songs come right through me onto paper or recording device, perfectly formed from beginning to end and some need a few tweaks. While others speed through me so fast, it's like the equivalent of seeing scenery lit up by a momentary lightning and then trying to sketch from memory what I saw. Those songs have less of chance of being as good in my opinion but those, I guess, are the songs that teach me to work at "the craft" of songwriting. Though many of them keep me frustrated for years as the various stabs I take at them aren't good enough for me to feel I have finished the song. Somehow the songs that come through me know what they're meant to be and my meddling with them, only seems to get in the way. I just wish they'd give me a little more time to record or write them before disappearing back to where ever they came from.
So I've been plunking away on my keys today and shredding paper after paper as I try to Frankenstein this song that ran through me as fast as an electrical shock some years back and I'm actually content at what it is turning into. "It's ALIVE!" I think God smiled, I did when I saw that it was good. The test will be to see if that feeling sticks. I'm hoping to record it raw and get it on YouTube as quickly as possible, to share with you. Maybe I'm wrong but it feels special to me. So this is what I was doodling prior to rummaging for previous renditions of the song, with the strong feeling that today it would be completed!
"You should have known better but you didn't. You should have done better but you couldn't. You shouldn't have accepted what was thrust on you but you didn't know you had a choice. With everything so messed up, you should have let go but your stuck. How do you get better? How do you give better? When all you know is to give what you've got? You should have known better but you didn't. You should have done better but you couldn't. You should have given better but you wouldn't. You would only give what you got but when does the madness stop? What if you have a choice to let go of the noise, to pull the answers from your heart, to make a clean start, trust that there is a better way and do a little better every day. Look through the pollution. Find the solutions. Commit to evolution. Make a start. Take your part. Do better cause you can. Cause now you understand. With just your thoughts turned into plans and compassion for your fellow man. We now do better cause we can. While we forgive those who can't. Who should have known better but they didn't and should have done better but they couldn't."
It's a busy week. Don't know if I'll get back to the song tomorrow or not. Maybe... :-)
 

While you were working

 
I will start by saying I love my working sisters. I have goals and dreams for myself as well. As a mother, a goal of mine has been to invest to the best of my abilities in my family. Both my husband and I worked outside the home when we were 1st married. When our second son came along, for the first six months of his life he was on a heart and lungs monitor and was considered to be a high risk for SIDS baby. I was tired all the time between the two boys, daycare runs, my dog who still needed lots of attention, my 40 hour plus a week job and nursing and pumping. In the midst of this I got the talk from my hubby about "What has happened to our sex life?" Fair question but I was in no mood to hear it. Our older son was bouncing off the walls in need of attention. I knew something had to be done, so I did what I always did, I found all the written material I could find, this time on cutting expenses and I tallied up the costs of me working verses not. Then, with my husbands blessings, I made the choice to invest 40 plus extra hours a week into my family, my life, our home, our money and managing it all. I realized that time buys money and money can buy time, if you have enough of it and make wise choices with it, rather than let it wash away with the wants of the moment. So I cut out the middle man (incoming money) and I invested my time in things I would otherwise be spending money on. I found my time to be a better investment in my family and possibly a better investment in yours, than the money ever was. We are such a money driven society and it also seems to be a necessity so far as I can see but sometimes it behooves us to take stock of our lives.
While everyone was at work, I was making sure my family was having balanced meals and cooking and baking with my kids, the neighbors kids and my niece and nephew.
While everyone was at work, I got exercise and sunshine playing with them outdoors and at the pool.
While everyone was at work, I was learning by trial and error to groom my poodle, who when I erred, we lovingly called "Rat Dog."  I think I said that to myself under my breath a few times too, when I took scissors to my own hair.  My youngest son never had his hair professionally cut till he was 19 or 20.
While everyone was at work, I was volunteering, in the school, the PTA, some community groups and I was also advocating for children too. My neighbor's kid once asked, "Miss Kristina, will you watch me in the park while you watch your son, so I can feel safe?" I did! We in fact had a known child predator that was scoping out the kids in our neighborhood and got physical with one of our neighbor's kids while they were out riding their bike. He got off on a technicality and continued his behavior until I believe his asthma made it to difficult for him. I stopped some teacher/student violence and prejudices in our schools. Ours was also the safe house in the neighborhood where kids would hang out till their parents came home. 
At the end of the day, I would pop in videos or video games from Blockbuster and sneak off with my husband for some quality time.
It wasn't perfect but it was worth the time I invested. I found myself again. I found my husband was still the guy I fell in lust and love with. I found I wasn't a yeller, which was something along the way I had somehow sadly become.
I did pick up a few part time jobs along the way, when it seemed necessary. I started writing again. I started singing again. I started feeling like myself again and not the drone just going through the motions I had felt like previously.
I have a sensitive nature and the choice I made allowed me to nurture not only the people around me but also myself. I tell you my story in case you're looking for another way in your own life and also because it should be known that full time moms are people, making choices to better themselves, their families, their communities and they have worth. Sure some depicted on TV these days with their exotic lives and what not, can come across as a sideshow at a carnival but most of us, like our sisters that work outside the home, really work hard and really invest value in all we do. It is my hope that one day our government will respect us well enough to give us social security checks when we're old for our investments in our country or at the very least for all the hours of volunteer work we do that benefit our schools, our government our society and possibly you.
 

I'm a quitter

 
Early on I learned in "Tug Of War" if my opponent was stronger and I was losing, I could let go and have immediate satisfaction in no longer putting all my effort into something without a sense of reward or worse yet, feeling like I was failing. I equated letting go and quitting as a sort of freedom and an opportunity to find success elsewhere. It's not normal for me to quit at games, unless they last too long to hold my attention or start to feel tedious to me. In general, I'm not really that much of a game player unless it's puzzle based or fun in a community sort of way, where everyone's having a good laugh. Winners and losers is not so much for me. I have always preferred win/win. I like games but not when things get too complicated or too competitive. Yes, I purposefully lost out to my kids when they were young, not always but more often than not and I'd totally throw the first part of the game in an effort to make them feel excited at the prospect of winning it made it more fun for them and more interesting for me to try to have a comeback but I never cared if I got skunked by my kids.
What I don't like is wasting time. When my mind starts to wander, I normally start to question if I need to as well. I start getting anxious that I'm missing out on something better, like me, if not here in this moment then where are my thoughts and I normally want to follow them and so I quit what I'm doing and try to catch up with my mind's vision. I free up time for wherever it is my mind wants to go. If I'm tired and don't know where that is, I'm content with the idea that at least I won't be caught up in doing something I don't want, when the thing I do want, makes itself known or available. I like the freedom of knowing I can just jump in and give it a go and see how it makes me feel.
I've been feeling like there's too much on my plate lately and I'm looking around skeptically at things and asking is this what I want? Does this fit the life I want to live? Is this something I own or is this something that owns me? Is this tool useful anymore? This habit? This lifestyle? I'm taking inventory of my time and my things and I know, I'm about to quit some things in order to make space for what I want or maybe just space where I can be, comfortable, till that next inclination moves me in a direction that has my name on it...
Current song on my mind-Beatles, "Let It Be"  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ajCYQL8ouqw&feature=kp
 

For the time being...

 
My life feels like chaos at the moment and even admitting this frightens me. I feel myself pulling inward in an attempt to find my own clarity. My belief is that I will find what I need inside me and pull that envisioned change through me and into this world our bodies occupy. I believe each of us are doors we can pull change through when it's wanted, needed and we're willing to do the work that comes with it. I think it's our connection to a collective soul, a place where we are all one, the place we all come from and all return to one day in the form of energy. I believe this life is our gift to explore our own individuality and along with it sensations strangely different from those felt as a collective soul. I believe we are, while in human form the care takers of all life, strange and wondrous gift that it is.
I was sad to learn that Marianne Williamson is not going to Congress. Like a scientist, I was curious to see how that might play out. I believe in leaders that are responsible to the people they lead and to the preservation of and betterment of the lives of those they lead. I think of the great deeds Jimmy Carter has done for others and I think of him as a great leader, even if he wasn't known to be a great President. Perhaps Marianne will do more for people by not being a Congress person. I do believe in her and I hope she continues to envision a world of change and pull it through her, while gifting those of us hungry for it.
When I think of leaders, 911 and the second Twin Tower tends to cross my mind. The accounts of the people asking their managers/leaders should we evacuate and they were told to get back to work. I would have high tailed it out of there and convinced as many people as I could to do the same. However, I've learned in life the more I wave my arms around in an attempt to call attention to the impending accidents I see on the horizon, the crazier I appear to be and less likely people are to pay attention. So many events I've seen play out in my head before they actually have happened. So often I feel like I'm just watching it in slow motion until life catches up and KABOOM, it's too late. Drives me crazy sometimes, especially when those I love are hurt or swallowed up in it.
I want to enjoy this moment (good/bad) for whatever it offers because I believe it WILL point me in the next direction I need to go. I want to preserve life and the titillation of the senses making us excited and energized to be alive. I want to preserve this for your and my children's children and theirs, etc.
What are you here (in this life) for? There's no right on wrong answer, there's only the next question it leads you to. How is that going for you? Are you leading yourself? Following leaders? Are they leading you where you want to go? Are your needs being met? Will you leave a legacy? If so, for whom and what is that legacy? Or maybe you don't know what you're here for. That's a foreign thought to me. Again, neither wrong nor right, unless that's not working for you. Maybe I over think life. That's a possibility I've contemplated. Maybe the chaos I'm pulling back from only exists in my own head...
Edie Brickell & The New Bohemians, "What I Am":  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tDl3bdE3YQA  "Choke me in the shallow water before I get too deep."  :-)
 

If you could stop the world for 1 day who would you spend it with?

 
In this technology, computer internet age, sometimes I find myself lost. We all seem to be so connected in with it, that sometimes I fear disconnection with people. Hmm? Well let me explain further. On one hand I can keep track of family and friends from many miles away and feel close, while connecting with old friends and making new ones right there from my computer. On the other hand, I get a sinking feeling inside when I spy a mother in a restaurant using her cell phone the whole meal, while a child stares off into the distance or worse, tries to get her attention. I've even seen whole families with all their gadgets and not a word between each other. This strikes me as sad and perplexing, as do the moments I realize, I've lost vast amounts of time to the internet, when I told a family member I'd be with them in five minutes and that was 45 minutes or so ago...
Last Wednesday, I felt the need to go be with my parents. My Dad has been suffering the effects of radiation and chemo therapy. I wanted to stop the world and spend some time with he and my Mom. While I was with them, I had this guilty feeling nagging at me over not checking my email. Strange world. That never would have even crossed my mind as little as 10 years ago. I had email 10 years ago but it was lucky to be checked once a week. I found myself pondering what "Tuesdays With Morrie" would have been like if Mitch had been texting while Morrie spoke or checking his email and social media. "Excuse me Morrie, hold that thought..." It was rewarding to me, to let the computer oriented thoughts go and connect with my parents in the moment. When I choose to spend my time with someone, it's just my nature that they get my attention as fully as I have it to give. Normally, at that moment, they are my favorite person to be with because I've chosen to be with them, spend time with them and time is important to me. I personally don't want to be with someone that prefers their phone, to my company. I'm not over the top about this. I'm respectful of people's time. I'm patient and understanding when people have serious things to sort out in life and it requires cell phones or computers. The world doesn't revolve around me but my time and how I spend it, kinda does and I've always been very aware that we could run out of time tomorrow and I can't help but wonder what my last regrets would be. If I had only one half hour left of life, would I send out an email to all my family and friends? Would I post to social media? No, no I wouldn't. Most likely, I would try to get to my family members and be with them or call them and then embrace whoever was with me in the last moment.
 

Fate and Furey

 
I'll keep it short today and just direct you to the first video of Dan and I combining our music with sailing. It's my desire to inspire joie de vivre and then take it a step further to help you accomplish that with your significant other and inspire it in your offspring. SO, without further ado here's the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NmPaAmKNZbQ&list=UUPLCm3Z8Xa_yUen2ckAZUTA
"I want each of you to find your inner peace, so we can collectively put the "peaces" of the puzzle together and finally see the picture it creates-World Peace."---Kristina Furey
 

When I was 16, it was a very good year

 
When I was 16, I went to Ocean City with two girlfriends and one of my girlfriend's family. We spent each evening out on the boardwalk, normally eating a slice of Grottos and checking out the scene and in with certain shop owners we had befriended. Both of my friends were very bubbly like myself and one just loved to hug people and made that very evident. So one night, I convinced them we should welcome people to the boardwalk. I thought we could have a lot of fun with it, if we told people it was our job to welcome them to our wonderful boardwalk and we hoped they really enjoyed it and took advantage of the evening to do everything that would make their beach vacation complete. We told them at the very end of the boardwalk they would find little cards where they could rate their experience of the boardwalk and of course, us, their welcoming crew. (Of course this all fabricated by yours truly) In my head it was like the FANTASY ISLAND welcome but with hugs, instead of flower leis. Very few people avoided us. Most people loved us as they found us fun and non-threatening and we even got some interest from the opposite sex, wanting numbers and to hang with us. Okay, I did take pitty on one guy who said he was going to get his ear pierced for the first time and confided in me that he was nervous and would feel better if I would hold his hand while he got it done and my friends would come along too for support, which worked for me because as much as I enjoyed meeting so many people, I had safety concerns and would not leave any of my friends behind or walk off alone. Turns out he did not bite and didn't turn out to be a serial killer. I think most people understood my friends and I and that we were just having a little fun and asking people to relax and do the same. Most people really seemed to enjoy the experience!  I like to believe it perked them up and made them enjoy their time there all the more.  That was the inspiration anyway..
I often wonder where that part of me went... ? I think part of me is trying to behave out of respect for my husband and not wanting to lead anyone on or be too out of the "norm". I've found people take me the wrong way, so I've learned to edit myself. Part of me disappeared after some run ins with people that did bite and some spirit killers if not serial killers. But the parts of me I've managed to save along the way, mourned the parts I've lost while watching this video of Amanda Palmer. I was touched to tears and also a little uncomfortable with her ability to just be her very unique self and have so much love and trust for her fellow people. I envy her that and mourn my own losses! I hope that part of me is not extinct or becoming extinct because I really believe we all need to have more moments in life where people say "Yes, I see you and I think you're beautiful and you're okay and worthy of my time and attention just the way you are.
This is the Amanda Palmer I saw and related to:
 

What would you do?

 
I went to a doctor last week about some issues I've been having and I brought along some past X-rays, I thought would be helpful. So, do you ever get the feeling when you meet someone, that right off the bat, they don't like you? I had brought my best self to that appointment and I felt organized with the X-rays and I went over my history mentally preparing for any questions the doctor might ask. From the start, the doctor was very curt and looked more agitated, than helped, when I handed the X-rays over. The doctor went through my X-rays, taking them out of their envelopes, looking them over, slipping them back into the envelopes and then proceeded to throw each finished envelope on the floor. I mean like throw it down, hard. I wondered if I should comment but instead bit my tongue, knowing my comment would at the very least come out wrong through my tone of voice and only aggravate the situation. So, I just sat there thinking, what's the quickest way out of here? The doctor did pick up the X-rays at the end and put them on the chair, which was within the doctor's arm's reach and gave me a prescription for some new X-rays after a quick examination with very few words exchanged. I then grabbed up my X-rays and went on my way, glad to be out there! I have chosen not to schedule the appointment for the new X-rays because I don't see myself going back to that doctor, putting myself in that doctors care, possibly being sedated and that doctor using any sharp object on me. I haven't figured out yet what to do about seeing another doctor or if insurance will cover it...
I just wonder sometimes, how someone that's never met me can choose to treat me so unkindly or in such a dehumanizing way. I've come to the notion that it says more about them than it does me. I comforted myself with the thought that when that appointment was over, I could walk away and not have to deal with that person anymore but they don't have that option. Wherever they go, there they are and they have to deal with them self. (I hope they don't have children.) I thought I would leave it all there in that room and walk away free but here I am about a week later and still unable to let it go. It makes me wonder about where our society is heading when a doctor sworn to serve and heal chooses to treat a person so discourteously? I wonder if they don't like being a doctor? I just wonder and wonder all sorts of questions in my head, Why? Does the doctor need some sort of healing them self? Was this just "A bad day" for the doctor?
Anyway, I thought if I put my experience out there, along with my concerns, maybe I could finally get it out of me because it feels like a knot in my stomach and it makes me sad. The last thing I want to be met with, when I'm in need of help and asking for it, is some person on a power trip, making me feel uncomfortable and dehumanized. I expect it's that way for everyone. Well that's what I would think...
 

My May Newsletter

 
HELLO,
I hope you are enjoying all that is Spring and that you have had time to embrace the warmer weather! So far this Spring, I feel like I'm trying to bite off more than I can chew! It's okay though because I seem to be finding the energy to keep putting forth and for a long time I was really struggling with that. I feel like sometimes I go through life losing and finding myself, I don't know, maybe it's just some form of growing pains. What I do know is, currently, I feel like myself and it's like embracing an old best friend I've not seen in a while! I'm even taking time to sit down at my keyboard again lately and toy with some songs, along with some thoughts on things I'd like to accomplish and ways I might do just that. As a result of this, I'm making some little changes along the way. The newsletter will be shorter and sent out once a week. I'll no longer be posting my newsletters to my blog. If you would like to receive my newsletters, you can sign up at my home page: http://kristinafurey.com/ by entering your email address where it says "join the email list." You can still find my blogs, each week, right here. :-) My social networks links and YouTube link can also be found on my home page. This is my attempt of not innundating anyone that has opted in, to my newsletters and follows me via Twitter or is a Facebook friend and may also enjoy reading a fresh blog and not something that has just shown up in their email. :-) If you feel innundated by me in anyway I hope you will contact me with suggestions on how I might be more respectful of your email, news or twitter feed and please keep it to helpful and kind, THANK YOU!

AND NOW, here's where you can find us in the flesh this month.... This Saturday 5/10 from 4-7pm we'll be back at Kalypso's Sports Tavern, in Reston VA.
Next Saturday 5/17 from 7-10pm we'll be at The Cajun Experience in Leesburg VA
The following Saturday 5/24 from 6-10pm we'll be at Big Mary's Dock Bar, located at Pirates Cove in Galesville, MD.
For more on those and other gigs: http://kristinafurey.com/gig/

Best wishes for a great week!
With love,
Kristina :-)
MY MESSAGE: "I want each of you to find your inner peace, so we can collectively put the "peaces" of the puzzle together and finally see the picture it creates, World Peace!"