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Oatmeal Pie Mug Cake

I’ve been making  mug cakes lately. Have you heard of them?  Every day for brunch I make a new one. Yes, I eat brunch everyday. Who says it’s just a Sunday thing? Anyways, I have been experimenting with different ingredients. I haven’t been getting enough protein lately, so I have been adding a nice dose of vegan protein. I’ve also been adding a nice, healthy dose of chia seeds everyday. I’ve been working on the ingredients so that I don’t add any empty calories. The picture below was one of the best ones I’ve created. It was more of an oatmeal pie mug cake. I used a ground up oatmeal packet, chia seeds, vegan protein, almond coconut milk, and a pear (not shown), instead of sugar. All in all it had about 250 calories, but all good for you calories. image1.JPG

I am still working on creating other kinds of mug cakes. As soon as I have enough money to go grocery shopping again, I’ll update with some better ones (and better pictures).

 

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Money Life

So, I haven’t updated in a very long time, and I guess it is about time for me to update about what is going on with my life and career and whatnot. A lot has been going on in the midst of this plateau I’ve been squatting in for this past year. Acting wise it feels like I haven’t been doing a whole lot. I did a play last Christmas with Onion Man Productions. Since then, I have just been doing improv at Whole World. Needless to say I have been feeling a little down about it. Life wise, I started making a little bit more money, not much, and we moved into a little cheaper of a place. Unfortunately I am still trying to pay all the fees that go along with moving into a new place, so I am still way behind on that. It gets really hard to not become defeated when you are always broke, and every time you think, yay, I’m catching up,  there is still one more thing left to pay. Oh wait, no two more. One time someone said to me, “Brooke, you have to learn to be happy no matter how much money you have”. It was a server I was working with. One that still lived at home, I might add. I  was so broke at the time, I didn’t even have money for food. He made me so mad in that moment. He didn’t really understand what I was going through. And honestly physically it is very hard to be happy with no food. I mean your brain chemistry needs certain things to make you happy.

I am getting off on a tangent, sorry about that. But maybe, he did have a point is what I am trying to say. Actually, I don’t know how I feel about that. I’ll think about it later. My point now that I wanted to make is that, I think I focus too much on money, and that makes me unhappy. Sure its hard to, when you can’t go somewhere because your broke. Or every time someone asks you to go eat, you get a little bit more embarrassed that you do not have the money.

But I am going to start thinking about other things instead of that. Instead of sitting at home staring at my wall, feeling angry that other people know how to make it all work, I’m just gonna get out there and figure out how I can make it work while knowing I have no idea what I’m doing. But something is better than nothing.

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The 2015 Christmas Comfort Project

Growing up I did not have much experience with the homeless. Where I’m from we have about one homeless guy, and his homelessness has always been a matter up for debate. Dancing Dave is his name. He’s an older black man who wears what looks like a white sailor suit. Back in the day he would dance for money, giving him his name, Dancing Dave. Once when I was a kid, my dad and I gave him a ride after I begged my dad to please pick him up.
In Europe there are all of these gypsies that beg for money. If you aren’t familiar with their practices you are liable to get your money swindled. When I was in Prague, my best friend would give me a hard time for giving any one any money. But one girl simply laid on the ground, knees under her, arms outstretched. I gave her money because I thought she was humble.
When I moved to Atlanta and would go to Little Five Points, I was terrified of the homeless. I had always been taught to look away, turn away. Don’t look at them.
A few months ago a man came up to me at the gas station. He asked if I could call someone for him. He was tired of being on the streets. He said he couldn’t go on this way. I called all of the numbers I could find for him, but unfortunately at 1 in the morning, none of them answered. I was devastated that I had to turn him away without being able to help him. I was able to give him some food, but I knew that that wasn’t enough. I don’t know if he got the help he needed, but I hope he did.
Living on the streets is what I would consider a nightmare. I can’t imagine waking up and having nowhere to go or no one to help me, but I know that thousands of people are forced into that situation everyday. It’s so easy to ignore them, walk past them, or look away. It’s an inconvenience. If they didn’t want to live one the streets they wouldn’t. They just panhandle because they’re lazy. Or they’re just gonna spend the money on drugs or booze. These are all excuses that people have for avoiding the homeless. We don’t want to be bothered by their pain, their struggle. It would hurt too much if we could look and see them.
My dear friend Kayla Shai is hosting a Christmas project this year. It is The 2015 Christmas Comfort Project.  Here is a link to her website. Please check it out for further details Kayla Shai Project. The purpose of this project is to give 300+  gifts to 300+ friends in a current state of homelessness in Atlanta. The gifts will be three items. They are the first book of the Layla Sue series, Comfort, written by Kayla Shai, a composition notebook, and a pen. To donate, one can buy spots through Paypal for $10 dollars each. Each of these 10 dollar spots will cover the three part gift. One can also buy as many spots as one would like. Donations will be open on September 1, 2015.
It’s so easy to look away, but if you’ve ever wanted to make a difference in someone else’s life, please consider going to the website and giving a donation. Be a hand that helps.
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Jealousy: The Element of Exclusion

Some days I feel as if I’m “living the dream”. I feel as if I am right on the cusp of somewhere I want to be. Today sort of feels like one of those days. Not for any particular great reason, I just feel as if I am a lot further into my career than when I started. Today I have a network of people who I love and feel truly honored to work with. It makes me happy, excited, (and sometimes a little jealous too) to see that my facebook feed, twitter, instagram, etc. is filled with actors and other industry people. It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy because they’re my friends, and it makes me happy to see they’re successes. And it also inspires me and reminds me that I too can have success. I think some people forget that. Which is what I want to write about today. How jealousy and bitterness does no good. It doesn’t help, and it just leads to loneliness. I mean I guess it could lead to other things, like becoming an evil villain. Actually I think those are probably some of the key traits to becoming an evil villain.

I was jealous and bitter not too long ago. For quite a while actually. I would look around at everyone I knew and be jealous of their successes, their lives, their friendships. I think it made me a little bitter, because I didn’t have those things, at least I didn’t think I did.  And honestly seeing other people being happy and accomplishing things just made me feel like I couldn’t. Instead of it motivating me to work harder, it put this heavy weight on me. And then I would just compare myself and think, I can’t do that because they are doing it. And they know what they are doing/they’re better at it than me/everyone will laugh at me/i can’t make a fool of myself because I’m brookespivey/nobody will care anyways.

Those are all negative thoughts that are not going to help anybody. And unfortunately nobody in the world can make someone stop thinking them except the person thinking them.

Lately though I have been combatting these feelings. I think I’m getting better at not comparing myself and also being happy for other people. I think this just came with time for me. And also I naturally just love most everyone anyways, so feeling bitter and resentful is just not something I like feeling. For me, I grew out of being resentful when I started opening up to other people. When I stopped being angry that I didn’t know something and started asking questions.

I think that having good friends in this industry is a little like being in an open relationship. You’re constantly surrounded by people who you respect and cherish, but you’re also competing for the same thing sometimes. Not that people in open relationships are competing for the same thing, but they do share a level of jealousy with each other.  I’ve never been in an open relationship, but from what I’ve learned from other people, is that yes,there is jealousy at times but they have open communication and talk about it. And they deal with it together.  The thing about being in open relationship, in my opinion, that is similar to being in relationships with other actors/artists/creatives is that there will be jealousy at times, but the overwhelming support and love hopefully overshadows those feelings.

I think another thing that makes jealousy such a hurtful thing, is because of the element of exclusion. Being jealous of what someone else has, implies a certain lonesomeness, a left out feeling. I mean that’s what jealousy, envy are, right? It’s seeing people have things that you are left out of because you don’t possess them. So one thing that I’ve been doing to try to combat this feeling, is really being a part of others successes. I don’t mean like riding their coattails. But I mean by helping others reach their goals, by being a good partner. Being there when they need a reader. Or just listening to someone else’s problems. I think that by being a part of other people’s lives in this way, it doesn’t feel so lonesome when other people have success because it’s your success too. You were a part of it.  Also it’s motivating to help others work. And inspiring. Because it makes you want to do something too. And helping others with their projects means it will be a  lot more likely that they will want to help you with your crazy one person show about your spoon collection.

I don’t think feelings of jealousy or bitterness are bad. I think they are normal human feelings that everyone deals with. But I do think that they can hold people back, so I say, let them go! Or use them. Or connect with others about them. I’ve always said that if I can tell people I’m jealous of whatever it is I am jealous of them, then it’s not wrong. I don’t know why I’ve thought that. But by letting it out in the air, it helps to at least not feel so alone with it.

What are ways that you deal with feelings of jealousy, bitterness, and resentment?

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Hello World

Hello! Welcome welcome. Nice to see you. How’s your mom and them? Excellent. I’m here to today to expose myself, emotionally and creatively, I mean. You see I am an artist. I’m an actor, writer, creator, and human (at least as far as I know). And I want to share my story.

I guess I should tell you the basics. I’m Brooke. I live in Atlanta. I’m pursuing a career in acting.

I wanted to start a blog to talk about my journey in the acting world. For a long time I’ve wanted to, but I didn’t think I qualified. I have no agent. I have no real film credits. I’m not on IMDB, and I still haven’t picked out my “perfect” headshot.

I moved to Atlanta three years ago after graduating from college to pursue my “dream” of acting. I studied acting for four years, but when I got here I realized that I knew absolutely nothing about the industry. Or how to survive on my own. Since then a lot has happened. I’ve had numerous jobs I hated. I’ve wrecked my car, lost my dog of 15 years, broken my wrist which left me jobless and penniless. But I’ve also been a maid of honor in my best friends wedding, become a god mother, and made incredible new connections. So, yeah I’ve experienced a lot. And all of this while wanting to pursue acting.

But back to why I want to share my story with acting. I read the articles on backstage all the time. I’ve literally stayed up all night reading articles from Secret Agent Man. He’s my favorite. But sometimes when I read these articles, I just get frustrated. The authors have all been in the business for 20 plus years. They know what they are doing. They know what they are talking about which is great, but sometimes I just want to hear from someone who is like me, someone who is still trying trying to scratch the surface. I want to hear from someone who is actually struggling to survive, not someone who is financially secure and stable. I thought about that for awhile. In fact at the time I got this idea to blog about my own journey into acting I thought,” I want to hear from someone who has $1.79 in their bank account and doesn’t know what’s coming next.” And then it hit me! That’s me. I had 1.79 in my bank account, and maybe the blog I want to be reading is the blog I should be writing. So here goes. This is going to be my personal story, my personal experience as an actor, and as a person. Hope to see you there.

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