All posts by AnneFurlow

Always on the go!

Stop just waking up like it’s an accident.

Another video that was part of my leadership journey through the small group at work.

I like that he starts off asking critical questions. “What do you want?” “How do you want to live?” I think vision is one of the most important parts of being a leader. Being “successful” isn’t the same for each individual. To some being a successful leader is being well liked by their group/team/workplace. Some people find money to be a measure of successful leadership. This could be personal and/or company profit.  The list can go on, which is why it is CRITICAL to have a vision and know exactly what you are working for. If you don’t know what you want how will you know if you have achieved it? It is only with that vision that you can create a concrete path to lead you towards success.

He uses “fight” and “work” as synonyms. I like that view, because some successes do come with minor effort, but some you do truly have to fight for. In the last year I proved that I can accomplish just about anything, but it may not come easy. If you want it bad enough, it is worth the fight. No one will fight that fight for you though. YOU have to fight to make it happen. Someone else can work on your side to support it, but you won’t get far without the internal drive.

“Letting.” There are so many things that happen that are beyond your control. Other people’s actions, location, weather, flat tires, whatever it may be… it happens sometimes. But these things happen to every single person. Every single person has a bad day. Every person gets caught in the rain without an umbrella. But not every person will learn from their bad day to have better days in the future. Not every person will dance in the rain. There is so much power in personal choice. Life is what you make it, not what happens to you.

“Winning spreads.” I see this statement in a few ways, all true, and all important to attaining your goals. Your attitude is contagious. A group is going to be brought down if their leader is a pessimist. If they feel like they have been given an impossible task, they will see the task as impossible and not try. — “Winning Spreads.” You attract the energy you put out in the world. — Last one, “winning spreads.” Think snowball effect. Don’t let the obstacles keep you from rolling on. Once you start you can use that momentum to carry you over obstacles and towards more and bigger successes.

He advises to eliminate “low self esteem, doubt, and fear.” All internal things that YOU can change. It is up to you though, no one can make you get over your deepest fears, but yourself. Encouragement can help you get over low self esteem, but SELF is the key word. You have to change it.

I loved the part about making a guarantee to yourself. I reflected earlier today about commitments vs goals. When you have a goal it is easy to forgive if you do not meet it. Frequently you are even given another opportunity to meet that goal. When you make a commitment, a guarantee not meeting that results in lack of trust and often not another opportunity. Thinking about a money back guarantee, if the product doesn’t work are you more likely to purchase from THAT company again or keep looking? Exactly.

One thing that he mention was complaining when someone (your boss) is keeping you from succeeding. I do think that sabotage happens, but you can’t just complain without taking action. You have to listen to the criticism and/or evaluate their actions. It may be an obstacle, but if you can overcome it you will be significantly stronger in the end. Or possibly, that isn’t the type of environment you would want to be successful in. Take your talents elsewhere if you have to, but don’t let the bump in the road stop you from reaching your vision for success. He said you should “care more about you then (they) do.” You are what matters at the end of the day, keep moving.

No excuses. Keep moving towards your version of success. It won’t be easy, but it is possible when you fight. “You owe you.”

Spotify Discover Weekly

I am kind of in love with Spotify. I spend a sickening amount of time on it. Yes, I pay for the monthly premium membership. My work has blocked streaming services, so the app is all that I have as far as music goes.

Normally I just make a playlist for the next show I am going to and listen to that. At the show I am familiar enough to sing along if I didn’t already know the words. After the show I get a high hearing the songs again. Then it is time for the next show. I am at a little bit of a slow point for concerts right now though. I had Firefly last month. Dave Matthews Band earlier this month and Matisyahu was last week. Then as of right now I don’t have anything else until September. I’m stepping in to a new position at work, still somewhat broke from going on tour in the Spring. There really haven’t been many shows in my area aside from the country shows. I normally travel 3-4 hours for a show since few come through my area, but I just haven’t had time, energy, or money.

Firefly opened my eyes to EDM. I have always been a little bit of an EDM fan, but definitely more of an alt-rock girl. After seeing Zedd, Steve Aoki, and The Chainsmokers at Firefly that is all that I have wanted in my life. For the last month and a half I have been listening to dancePOP, EDM Now, ZEDD Radio, and a few other playlists. Well, a few weeks later I am still not sick of the same songs, but I am definitely craving some diversity and I am wanting to get back to my roots.

Enter The Spotify Discover Weekly Playlist.

Anne Furlow Spotify Weekly

WOW. Thank you! It is the perfect transition playlist to start to diversify my music again. It just makes my heart happy. They really hit the nail on the head with a lot of these songs. I am so looking forward to seeing what they picked for me next week!

In no particular order, these are my top 10 from this week’s playlist.

  1. Crystals – Of Monsters and Men — Not a new discovery since I have already heard this one on the radio. It wouldn’t have been my go to when creating a playlist, but I love when it comes up!
  2. Skinny Love – Fareoh Remix – Birdy — This is the first song that played when I hit shuffle. Just a beautiful song with some great dance breaks in there.
  3. I Want U – Alison Wonderland — This song just screams sex. Wow. I WISH I still did pole dancing so I could do a routine to this song. I wish I had seen this set at Firefly. Again, not a discovery, but a song I found more appreciation for.
  4. Contagious – Night Riots — This band makes me a little sad, because they were supposed to open for SomeKindaWonderful a few shows during the spring tour, so I would have seen them a few times. They got a sweet chance to tour with The Mowglis though, so I understand why they had to pull out. Still stinks, but I still love this song by them.
  5. The Seeds You Sow – Prides — I fell in love with this band this week. This was the best find of the playlist. I can only hear their 4 song EP in the US, because their album hasn’t been released here just yet. I have listened to that EP though on repeat a few times. Messiah is my favorite! I am kind of obsessed. Please check them out so they will start to have more traction in the US and I can see them soon!
  6. Next Year – RAC Remix – Two Door Cinema Club — I love the groove of this song.
  7. Fools Gold – Fitz and The Tantrums — I have missed two opportunities to see them within the last year and it kind of kills me. I have listened to their album “More Than Just a Dream” a few times, but for some reason I was surprised when I heard this song that it wasn’t a new single. GREAT song!
  8. Jubel – Klingande — I love this song. It feels like you are on a groovy journey when you listen to it. Not something I would have found without this playlist. I am in love with it though and may end up making it a ringtone… because that sax is incredible in it.
  9. Real – Years & Years — I was surprised this was the same band that did “King.” I hear the similarities now that I know, but I really thought I found a new band when I heard this one. He has a great smooth voice and I am totally digging the beat in this one.
  10. Youth – Foxes — I really didn’t try to rank this list in any way. I just typed them as they appeared on the playlist, but I may have saved the best for last. This song is so much fun to sing and dance to! She sounds like one of my favorites, Prinze George.

I don’t think there is any way I can share a link to my playlist since it is just for this week, but I will post all 30 songs below. I also got some Mumford & Sons and Andrew McMahon ITW on there. Found a love for Hoodie Allen and Jai Wold. They also threw in Doses & Mimosas which gave me good memories of The Strip to This Tour back in January.

Basically, throw down your $9 each month and praise the Spotify Gods, because this discover weekly playlist is a game changer…for me at least.

  1. Reality Dream – Morning Parade
  2. Indian Summer – Jai Wolf
  3. Weekend – Jai Wolf Remix – Mocki Jai Wolf
  4. Crystals – Of Monsters and Men
  5. Skinny Love – Fareoh Remox – Birdy
  6. How We Feel – Panama
  7. I Want U – Alison Wonderland
  8. Heartbreaker (feat. John Legend) – MSTRKRFT John Legend
  9. Contagious – Night Riots
  10. The Seeds You Sow – Prides
  11. Ways to Go – Grouplove
  12. Next Year – RAC Remix – Two Door Cinema Club
  13. Close Enough (feat. Noosa) – Ghost Beach
  14. Fools Gold – Fitz and The Tantrums
  15. Weekend – Priory
  16. Songs I Can’t Listen To – Neon Trees
  17. Jubel – Klingande
  18. Real – Years & Years
  19. Awkward (EP Version) – San Cisco
  20. Cecilia And The Satellite – Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness
  21. Doses and Mimosas – Variable D
  22. The Wolf – Mumford & Sons
  23. Tomorrow – Madi Diaz
  24. All About It (feat. Ed Sheeran) – Hoodie Allen Ed Sheeran
  25. Fiona Coyne – Skylar Spence
  26. Calling Out (Elephante Remix) – Penguin Prison
  27. Love Again – Cedric Gervais Ali Tamposi
  28. High Tide – Lamaitre
  29. Youth – Foxes
  30. Get Me Golden – Terraplane Sun

Why I want to leave T-Mobile after over 10 years

24-48 Hours. I went in on June 22 fresh from Firefly to file a claim on my phone that was stolen at Firefly. By fresh I mean music festival fresh. I just drove 4 hours after living outside and showering via water bottle for four days.

My phone is an extremely important part of my life. I got my first phone in 8th or 9th grade and I have had the same number and carrier since then. When I got married it wasn’t a hard sell to get our family plan with my carrier instead of his. I have always been fairly happy with T-Mobile. Their plans are cheap, they finally got the iPhone (lol), their customer service is good, no major issues. I don’t get service once I leave the bigger towns/cities. Thankfully, I don’t live in a rural area so that really isn’t a deal breaker. I use my phone for everything. It is my alarm clock, calendar, e-mail, TV, play room, photo album, camera, e-reader, iPod, GPS, secretary, accountant, my comfort blanket, and sometimes my sanity. Some say it is an addiction, but I think it is just a characteristic of my generation and definitely the generations to follow. They are too functional NOT to overuse.

I went to Firefly Music Festival June 18-21. On the second day of the festival I reached for my phone and it wasn’t there. I honestly don’t know what happened if it was my fault or if someone was shady. Either way, my phone was in someone else’s hands. I survived. It was weird not having my lifeline, but music festivals are such an escape from reality it was the perfect environment to detach from the phone. The Monday after the festival I went to TMobile before picking up my dogs or even going to my house. The guy who helped me was very nice, but much more interested in selling me an upgrade to my existing plan vs replacing my phone. He then told me if I wanted I could file my claim online or I could CALL them. (Really, you are going to suggest I call them… with what phone?) So I chose to file my claim online.

The process was so easy! Just a few drop down bars and a fill in the blank and they said my phone will be shipped out 24-48 hours after my claim is approved. GREAT! I figured it may take a day or two for the approval, then the shipping. I expected my phone would be here around Friday-Mondayish.

Not a big deal. I have my old iPhone. The battery life is weak, it doesn’t always ring, text messages just don’t come through sometimes, plus it is just an older model so in general the features aren’t as updated as I am used to. But it is better than being completely unplugged.

A week goes by… no phone. Claim pending.

I wait until that following Thursday to make a call. Turns out my claim was not approved, because I filed it as “lost”, but then wrote “theft” in the comments. Makes sense… but you couldn’t reach out and see what is up? Or just change the status of the claim to rejected, messed up, something that may catch my attention and I’ll make the call. So that claim was closed when I was on the phone and a new one was open. That claim was approved by the next day! Sweet! It was a holiday weekend so I wasn’t counting on it until Monday/Tuesday.

We are starting week three if you are keeping track.

No phone. BUT I have a tracking number! UPS shipping label created and they have the package. Then nothing. It was in I think PA, just hanging out. So holiday weekend. Monday nothing. Nothing Tuesday either. So I call Assurant Solutions (the company that deals with claims) and point out that it may be lost in transit. July 7th. For the past two weeks I have been calling them every few days begging for an update and then the obvious… a new phone.

I am trying so hard to be understanding. It takes coordination between TMobile, Assurant Solutions, and UPS. One person can’t see all systems and aspects. I’m sure this kind of thing happens every day, especially with a $900 phone with the serial number in the tracking info. They have their procedures to follow for this. I am just a number. There isn’t anything about me that makes me more of a priority in their eyes. That is very clear each time I talk to them. I have worked in customer service for ten years, I try to hard to be patient with the people who are really just trying to do their job. Most people that have been keeping track of my story told me that they would have pitched a fit by now. That really isn’t my nature. I fill out customer service surveys when I have something positive to say. I am not a user of the cynical, sarcastic phrase “well that’s what being nice gets you.” In most situations that is so far from the truth. I have just had it with this situation.

At the beginning of the month I was given the opportunity to advance to a MUCH higher position with a MUCH higher pay. Part of that job is dealing with customers. I am the person that comes in and puts smiles back on faces when sh*t hits the fan. I also coordinate between about 6 different companies for different aspects of the job. Eventually my company will give me a (verizon) phone for this purpose. But I can’t get the promotion until I prove that I can do the job. I can’t do my job without a reliable phone. I need to access a database, but I don’t have the space to download the app even after clearing everything from my phone. Since phone calls are spotty I can’t give out my number to customers or contractors in case I miss a call. Right now I am actually putting MORE work on everyone by not being able to effectively perform my job. This could ruin the promotion for me. I am beyond stressed about it at this point.

I am frustrated that UPS lost my phone. That I lost my phone. That TMobile “can’t do” anything to compensate me. That Assurant Solutions won’t communicate with me. Tonight I called Assurant Solutions and I was upset. I tried to keep an even tone and not be “that customer.” I mostly succeeded. I kept getting the same information. They can’t close the tracker without UPS confirming the package is lost. The tracking number shows that the claim is closed, package unrecoverable. It is done. It was done yesterday. He keeps telling me the same script over and over. Again, I am trying so hard to be patient and understanding. Finally after I stopped controlling my indoor voice he said he was going to get a manager or customer something… someone that I could talk to that may be able to help. Where was this person five minutes ago when I was still calm? After a few minutes of hold music… the call was dropped. I know they have my phone number, but I guess returning dropped calls isn’t a procedure they follow. My spite wants to think he hung up one me, but it was probably just my crappy back up phone.

Normally when I am upset I just want to be heard and I want whatever product/service I wasn’t getting. With this situation though I want compensation. I pay extra money each month for this equipment replacement insurance JUMP something thing. The selling feature is the quick turn around time for replacement devices. I have been without a reliable device for a month now unable to use the service I am paying for. But how can I get anything done in this electronic world we live in??

Again, I get it that I caused this mess by not having my phone in my hand at all time at the festival. I understand it isn’t TMobile or Assurant Solutions’ fault for me losing my phone, then UPS losing my phone. However, I am just so upset about the last of communication, understanding, and urgency.

This is mostly just for me to vent. I was shaking when the call was dropped, I don’t need to be that mad over anything and writing helps calm me. If you have any real advice though, feel free to pass it my way. Otherwise I’ll accept your validation that I should have a phone right now and it is okay for me to be so upset. That is what social media is for right?

Also, Verizon or AT&T?

Music & Social Media

So I am back in school and this semester I am taking a class on one of my favorite topics, Social Media. It is a passion of mine. I love seeing it constantly evolve. I love seeing people’s reactions on it. I get most of my news from Twitter. I keep in touch with the majority of my network on Facebook. I get stress relief on instagram. I keep a running video diary on Snapchat. It is truly a love of mine.

My twitter account @RockAnnneRoll is largely dedicated to music as well as my normal life. I follow quite a few bands, RT and favorite their posts, I interact with other fans, exc. Because of that I get follows from newer bands frequently. If I follow back within a few hours I will have a message in my inbox asking me to check out a music video or dong on SoundCloud. For awhile I would look at 90% of the ones I got. Most of them were some punk or metal band that I just couldn’t vibe with. So eventually I just started ignoring them.

Most of the time if I add them I’ll never hear from them again and they unfollow the same day I unfollow them. I have no clue how long ago artist “Leaving Richmond” started following me on Twitter and Instagram. It has been a few months though. I know this, because he actually interacts, unlike most other bands. Not just music stuff too, my real life stuff. It had caused me to pay more attention to him, however for whatever reason I never took the time to actually listen to his music. Well, I have been missing out. Tonight after finishing up some school work I hopped on Twitter like most nights and I saw his tweet about having a new song on SoundCloud. I didn’t currently have anything playing so I figured I would roll with it. I don’t know what I expected, but it wasn’t what I got. His latest track hit the spot, it was exactly what I wanted to hear. Now I have his whole SoundCloud on repeat. “The Danger of Standing Still” is the song that captured my attention. Honorable mention to “With Your Own 2 Hands” though. I actually sent him a DM apologizing for not listening sooner.

So my question is, how does a band get noticed on social media?

It isn’t enough to follow and get them to follow you back. Are bands actually successful when they DM people asking them to listen to their music?

Is it the personal interaction that really matters?

How much time does a band have to invest in an individual to get them to notice them?

How does an established band interact while still keeping a professional distance? Or does professionalism go out the window when it comes to social media (twitter).

Is it more important to have a single active band page or have each member create individual profiles?

So many questions about music and social media….

While I work on figuring that out… check out Leaving Richmond for some pretty great instrumental jams…

Unplugged Concert

I guess the title is a little misleading. When you hear “unplugged” in reference to music you assume it is an acoustic set. This was a more personal unplugged though.

I went the entire concert without using my cell phone.

Some of you may read that last statement in shock that I didn’t touch my phone. How will I have blurry pictures & poor quality videos to look back on? How did my friends know what song was playing? How did anyone know if I was having a good time? How can I prove who I went with? WAS I EVEN THERE??

Then there is the rest of you wondering why this is even worth noting. Why would I even have my phone out during the concert? Ugh, am I one of those people who holds their phone above their head for half the show recording full songs? Or am I one of those people too glued to texting, tweeting, or whatever else during a show?

For the first group. I had a great time, you can see his set list here, you are just going to have to trust that I was there. For the second group. I don’t think I am THAT bad at concerts. I usually take a few videos and take pictures while the video is rolling so I can have a bit of both. I’m pretty removed from social media/texting during the show, all of that can wait. In between sets is when I usually reach for my phone.

At Firefly I lost my phone on the first full day. There was definitely some panic when I realized it was gone. I asked everyone I came in contact with that might have seen it. That was before Paul McCartney & Zedd that night and then two more days packed with amazing artists. I couldn’t take pictures or videos, snapchat, text friends to find them, nothing. I was disconnected. I had already decided that I would be disconnected for a big chunk of the Festival by leaving my phone in airplane mode a lot of the time. The option was always there to reconnect with the touch of a button. Plus, I would still have the camera function for the shows. That was all gone. I am sad to say I didn’t watch all of Echosmith’s set, because I was in a panic.

After a little bit of time I realized I just had to accept it… then I went to the first few rows of Walk The Moon to dance it out. I got lost in the music, in the crowd, singing and dancing away. Then Shut Up and Dance came on and I could hardly see the stage, because of all the cell phones. At first it almost felt like the world was rubbing it in my face, all these people can look back on this incredible moment…but not you. Then I realized that in order to get that great shot, you can’t dance. I was one of the only people in my surrounding area that was still dancing. The song is literally called Shut Up and Dance, but no one could dance, because they were too glued to their technology. That moment changed my attitude about not having a phone for the rest of the festival. I wish I could have taken selfies with some of the people I became friends with. I wish my friends back home didn’t get panicked when I didn’t respond to safety checks. And yes, there were a few moments from some of the sets that I wish I had my own photos of. Fortunately there is this great thing called The Internet that will give me all the photos I could want from whatever set I am missing. As for my friends, I’ll see them next year, at another concert before next Firefly, or I already forgot their names so they really weren’t that important anyways.

With my new found freedom from tech I had an unplugged concert with Dave Matthews Band Saturday night in Virginia Beach. The show was a blast! It was my second time seeing them, but since they are always changing their set, I don’t think there were ANY repeats from the first time. I was in the lawn and it rained most of the time. This only added to the carefree atmosphere. It was an incredible place to just get lost and enjoy the people, the music, and forget about normal life. THAT is why I go to concerts, to escape. Not to take pictures or video. Not to have the best Snapchat story, but to just escape. Letting go of my phone was just one way to escape even farther in to the music…

Just a note: I’ll be taking a little bit of a concert break possibly until I go to Music Midtown in September, because I’ll be spending a week in Mexico in August. Gotta save some money for that trip! 

Let’s live tonight like fireflies… We’re Beautiful Now : Firefly 2015

**I want to start by saying that I did not take any of these pictures. I saved them on my computer as I was browsing Facebook, Twitter, exc and lost track. If you want credit or your photo removed just ask and I will be happy to do so!**


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Firefly was one of the most incredible things I have ever experienced. I knew it would be, but still I was unprepared. This weekend I experienced pure ecstasy, and I am not talking about the drug. It was just unreal. Four days spent surrounded by thousands of people with the same love for music.

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This is going to be a long one… but aren’t they all?

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I never thought I would go to a music festival. The thought kind of intimidated me. You see videos of the crowd and it just looks so overwhelming. I guess I figured if I went I would always be too far away to see the stage since I am so short. I am not an outdoorsy person, so camping seemed like a miserable experience. Plus, how do you decide what bands to see with all those stages. I am sure there were more reasons of why I didn’t think I could handle a festival, but they all are buried now that I have experienced it.

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So what changed my mind?

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In the last year I have thrown myself in the concert community head first. Talking to so many music and concert lovers from across the US. Their festival experiences began to make me envious. They were also people just like me, if they could do it SURELY I could right?

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Then the lineups started to be released. Social media was flooded by my concert friends promoting the festival they were going to and my favorite bands announcing their upcoming shows. It was all unescapable. I even participated in announcing the Bonaroo line up. Then the Firefly line up was announced. The Killers, Bastille, The Griswolds, Walk the Moon, and Awolnation were enough to make me want to go. Then there was this blurred headliner which was rumored to be Paul McCartney. WOW! I was still nervous, could I really handle a four day festival?

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When in doubt I always turn to the internet. I found the Firefly Message Board which answered some of my logistical questions. The biggest impact was finding the Firefly Fan Page group on Facebook. The people in this group are just incredible. All of my questions were answered and my doubts were dissolved, I was going to see a Beatle!

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I don’t go to concerts with people, because I am a terrible “host” bringing people in to my music world. During a show it is just me and the music. The concert community is one of my favorite things, I love meeting new people with the same loves and passions! When I take someone with me I miss talking to new people and making new friends. I definitely wasn’t going to try to find someone to come with me to a festival and risk missing a show I wanted to see, because they didn’t. Or anything else that could kill my vibe for the weekend. Plus with the facebook group I knew it would be easy to find someone from there to hang out with if I wanted. I even had people from previous concerts thinking about going.

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Everything I read in the group told me that camping was the way to go, even though that was the part that intimidated me the most. I had been debating between carefree camping where the tent is already set up for you and glamping where I would have power and AC. I didn’t own any equipment so normal camping was out. The benefit of carefree was that I didn’t need to find a roommate, it would be easy to just roll solo. Glamping was too expensive to not find a roommate and I didn’t want to risk getting screwed and not getting one. One of the friends I made at a previous concert didn’t have anyone to go with, I had the extra space, and the $200 sounded nice so I did break down and get a roommate in carefree. ((Note if you are reading this and thinking about doing carefree camping… 2person carefree camping should only be for ONE! 4 person can handle 2-3. Just my opinion, I enjoyed having someone to get ready with, but it was really tight.))

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As soon as I got home from the road with SKW I was a regular stalker on the threads reading the tips and new posts. I was somewhat active on the Facebook group trying to make some connections before the festival. Then I was trying to listen to as many as the bands as possible so I wouldn’t miss anyone on the line up I wanted to see. I made some crazy detailed spreadsheets and became a group favorite for sharing the one I made after the schedule came out. (I even saw my schedule printed and used in the festival by a few people) When it came time to leave I was as prepared as I could be.

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I drove up on Wednesday and stayed in Dover Downs that evening. I really wanted to get a full night of sleep before the festival. When I checked in they informed me I received a free room upgrade. So my last night indoors was spent in a penthouse suite. The whole room may have been close to the size of my house. I had two bathrooms, the main had a huge Jacuzzi tub, separate living room, everything was there. It was amazing! Especially since I only paid $200. The door said rates started at $450. I’m sure with the festival it would have been closer to $600+. I got room service for breakfast. Turndown service included bottles of water and Firefly branded chocolates. Such a great experience. I spent some time checking out the grounds and playing some casino games. It was a perfect way to start the festival.

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Thursday

That morning I woke up before my alarm ready to get started. It was raining though so I didn’t bother doing my hair, make up, or any of that. I don’t think I even changed from my pajamas. I don’t remember. I just went down, checked in to claim my tent, and went right back to the hotel. Played a few more slots, had breakfast, showered and got ready. Then it was still gross outside so I stayed in the casino until my camping roommate showed up. I ended up winning about $60-70 playing slots and blackjack. Pretty good stuff.

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Unpacking and getting settled at camp is all just a blur. Before I knew it I was walking across the bridge for the first time. I will never forget the feeling of walking in to the woodlands for the first time. Okay, a big part is because it was INSANELY muddy. My feet were soaked before I even saw the first stage. But aside from the elements it really was an almost magical experience. I was there. I made it. I was at a music festival. The excitement in the air was palpable. It didn’t take long before people were introducing themselves to me after recognizing me from the message board or Facebook group. The music started and I knew I was right at home.

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I was able to see 40 acts throughout the festival. Some I was able to watch the full thing, some I just stopped while passing through. The vast majority of the sets were absolutely incredible. I wish I could capture exactly how I felt during each set, but there are some things that words just cannot express. For each day I’ll list who I know I saw and if they had any specific memory for me.

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Young Rising Sons
Hey Rosetta!
Kill them with Color
Panama Wedding
Grizfolk
Ryn Weaver– She was the highlight of Thursday for me. I was already looking forward to seeing her after hearins some of the songs on Spotify. She is even better life! The energy was incredible!

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Twin Peaks
Jungle
X Ambassadors – I had a really hard time trying to decide between XA, The Kooks, and Tycho. Since Tycho was on the other side of the festival I decided to split my time in between XA and The Kooks. Both performances were incredible! One VIP perk that I had was a short cut between the stages so it was an easy transition after hearing my favorite XA song going over to The Kooks. XA killed it though and reminded me why they are one of my favorites.
The Kooks

That night after the festival I met some great people in the campsite. (I feel like it is worth noting that one was from AUSTRALIA) I talked to them for far too long until I decided it was finally time to get some sleep.

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Friday

Photo cred Mandi Heesh
Photo cred Mandi Heesh

Friday morning I started out the festival in the Dogfish Head tent drinking some Nameste and meeting some of the people from the facebook group and message board. It was great putting faces to names and getting to meet so many great people. It is a pretty fun group we have and I look forward to seeing them in between festivals.

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Clean Bandit
Eau Claire
Falls – A friend told me about them and I am so glad they did. The coffeehouse stage was a great way to get out of the sun for a bit and I loved their performance!
Wolf Alice – I was there for the end of this set, but unfortunately I don’t remember much of this set or Echosmith’s. This was when I realized I lost my phone. I am still not sure if I left it in the bathroom or fi someone took it out of my back pocket. I checked lost and found a few times and had my friends text/call it. No luck. I was in panic for a little bit. All I could think about was all the things I needed it for, keeping in touch back home, finding people in the festival, and taking pictures and video while in the festival. I was so distraught, but then before Walk The Moon I decided that I would not let myself spend the next two and a half days missing an object. Losing my phone was not the worst thing that could happen to me. Change your attitude, change your life.
Echosmith
Colony House

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Walk The Moon

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Bear Hands
Awolnation – Apparently I can only see them at festivals lol.

Photo cred Claudia Heidelberger www.claudiaheidelberger.com
Photo cred Claudia Heidelberger http://www.claudiaheidelberger.com

Glass Animals – This was truly one of the highlights of the weekend. I was with some friends from the message board loving life and being completely blown away by the set, or maybe that was the bass. Either way I had no clue how much I would love that set! I ended up getting the setlist from the sound booth and later that night they stood right next to me during Paul McCartney. It was a surreal experience dancing to Paul’s set with the people I just fell in love with on stage. Great guys, tons of fun! (Of course at the end of Paul’s set I had them sign my setlist)

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Morrissey – To be honest I only listened while I was getting things from my locker and stopped for a few minutes to say I saw him live lol.
Paul McCartney– What can I say. The man was incredible. The whole experience was like a dream. Hearing 90k people sing Hey Jude was everything I dreamed it would be and more.

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ZEDD- Festival highlight. Possibly #1. I was planning to leave after Paul’s first encore, but stayed when I was hanging with Glass Animals because I wanted to get them to sign my setlist. I was not about to interrupt a performance by a Beatle to ask for an autograph that is just rude on so many levels. So after I got my autograph and said goodbye to GA I ran across the festival to Zedd. I made it just in time for the first drop. Some fans organized something called Zedd 5K. They bought 5k glowsticks and we all planned to release them in the air at the first drop. I brought 50 of my own and several others did the same. It probably should have been renamed to 10K or something. (Maybe more?). That set was just me and the music. I ended up pretty close to the front too. I danced so much and I was just lost to the music. All the pain from the day disappeared and I was just on top of the world. When I hear his songs now I still see the lights. I cried tears of joy as I sung along to Beautiful Now. It was all just perfect.

I don’t have a clue what happened back at camp that night. I was on top of the world from Zedd and exhausted from the day so I probably just went to sleep.

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Saturday

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I got an early start to the Festival, because I wanted to be barricade or close to it for The Griswolds.

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Intergalatix– I only knew one of their songs from Spotify, but I am glad I didn’t miss their set! It was great!

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The Griswolds- I have bought tickets for them three times, never went because of the SKW tour. We have a mutual friend. I know several diehards in their fanbase too. I was SO READY for this set. It was AMAZING! I got a setlist and I FINALLY got to meet them afterwards. I got hugs and kisses it was like seeing old friends. In fact they thought we had already met. Social media perk! I was just excited they knew my name and exactly who I was.

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Zella Day– I had to catch this set, because I kept running in to their guitarist throughout the festival! Nice guy, great hat!

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Phoebe Ryan
Gary Clark Jr – I didn’t expect to end up at this set and I don’t know how I did, but WOW!!!!
SNBRN
Night Terrors of 1927
Betty Who
Dirty Heads
Spoon
Foster the People – Blown away. They put on a GREAT show. I didn’t think I was a FtP fan, but I DEFINITELY am now. WOW!

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I left Foster the People a few songs early to get to The Chainsmokers. Since I didn’t have the app I didn’t know it was moved to 11:15. I wandered a little bit and grabbed some dinner waiting for Kings of Leon. Before their set started they announced across the festival that a big storm was coming and we had to evacuate. It was a bummer not seeing KOL, but I was more heartbroken missing The Chainsmokers and Steve Aoki.

When I got back to the tent my roommate said she had a few friends in her SUV waiting out the storm. I wasn’t going to join, because I value sleep, BUT I decided to go ahead in the spirit of Firefly. It ended up being a fantastic night! We drank jolly rancher vodka like it was moonshine and just had a great time laughing, talking, eating “animal” crackers, and listening to music.


Sunday

I didn’t go to sleep until after 4am and they we woke up around 7am. It was a rough one. Sleeping in the back of an SUV with all my stuff and company is difficult. Plus it was raining and to TRY to stay cool the window was cracked. Sleep just wasn’t meant to be. We decided to go on an adventure outside of the festival so we went to McDonalds and Target. The guys in our group stopped talking to me around this time. I’m not sure what happened or if I did something… I think they were just trying to hook up with my roommate though. I was a cockblock by proximity. I let them go their own way for most of the festival seeing how I wasn’t wanted around lol.

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Prinze George– I have to give them special mention. I just love this little band so much!
Steve Aoki- Another festival highlight. Seeing Aoki at 2:30 in the afternoon isn’t easy. I was DRENCHED in sweat afterwards, but I had a BLAST! I missed his show when he came to my town in Feb, I won’t make that mistake again. It was INSANE!!!

Verite
Benjamin Booker
Bad Suns
Broods
Hozier
Bastille – There were some happy tears during this set. Definitely had a few moments where it was just me and the music and nothing else mattered. I love this band very much and I am so thankful I got to see them live.

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Snoop Dog

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Empire of the Sun – WOW!!!

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Tove Lo
The Killers

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The Chainsmokers- THIRLLED they rescheduled after their Saturday set was cancelled. I never NEVER danced so hard during a set. I had been in so much pain before and man I felt it after, but that didn’t stop me. I was covered in sweat and there were tears of pure bliss during Let You Go. I ended up the front of the VIP barricade by the end of the set. It was all just perfect. The best possible end to the festival.

My camping roommate decided to drive back that night. I crawled in my tent and passed out with my fannypack still on. Woke up the next morning, packed up, scored from extra tents, said a few goodbyes to the people still around, and drove my neighbor to the bus stop.

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I tried to leave names out of the post, because I know there would be people that I would forget and there were some names I just never got. But thank you to everyone who made this experience so special. Thank you to my camping roommate for taking care of me and not letting me sleep in the tent during the storm. Thank you to the people who I shared vodka with as the storm rolled through. Thank you for the people in carefree for your friendship and good vibes to start and end each day. Thank you to the people in the VIP section that have the same taste in music. Finally thank you to the Firefly message board/facebook community. Because of each of you I was prepared before the festival and I had great company throughout the festival.

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This past weekend means more to me than this excessively long post can express. It was an incredible weekend and I am so thankful for every moment. I met some great people. I enjoyed some out of this world music. Also important to note I learned I can enjoy life without a cellphone attached. I don’t have any of my own pictures, but other people’s pictures are able to capture the experience sometimes better than I could have. I don’t need twitter and facebook updates to prove that I had a good time. No one except for me would look at the blurry pictures or shakey videos from my iPhone. I can be free…

Until next year Firefly….

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Photo cred Creegan Jones
Photo Cred Creegan Jones

**Again… I did not take any of these pictures. I saved them on my computer as I found them so I apologize for not giving proper credit!**

48 Hours Without Social Media

To say I have been 100% without social media would be a lie. However, I have drastically increased the amount of time I am on social media. The biggest thing was I deleted my Facebook and Twitter accounts. No I didn’t log off and just let them be, I went all out and deleted them. I didn’t go out with some grand gesture. I didn’t make a long post before I went about the whys and the whens. I didn’t even know I was really going to do it until I clicked the delete button. I know this won’t be a permanent thing. I don’t intend for it to be. It is more of a social experiment where I am the only subject. I spend hours and hours every day checking my Facebook groups, posting on twitter, scrolling through instagram, or watching stories on SnapChat. I was easily clocking 3 hours a day on a light day and up to 6-9hours on a weekend or off day. Maybe even more than that to be honest. It was just incorporated with my day. It was a routine, a habit, an addiction.

On Saturday night I discovered I was hacked on Facebook. They didn’t change my profile picture, post an out of character Facebook status or anything public like that. Instead they went through my “people you may know” list and added over 100 people. I didn’t know if it was supposed to be a harmless action, if someone was sending a message, or if someone was trying to get access to me. My profile is locked down pretty well unless we are friends.
I really don’t know who did it, when they accessed my account, why they did it, or if they did anything else. After changing my password and logging me out of all remote locations I just decided I didn’t want to deal with it. I felt uneasy and just eliminating the whole situation felt easier. On Monday I was returning to the life of being a full time student and a full time employee. I have done it before, but it is no easy task. The less distractions the better.
Over the last few weeks I have become frustrated with Twitter. Things I would post were seen by an individual who manipulated my words to feed her paranoia. I know the whole point of Twitter is to share with the world and I love having followers. I think it is a high form of flattery that people care what I think, do, and say. It makes my life seem a little cooler than average. However, knowing that someone is maliciously watching makes me very uncomfortable. It is a good thing to start being aware of, because it is my hope to get a career with social media, PR, advertising. How can a company trust me to promote them when I am unsure of how I am promoting myself? So, when I decided to delete my Facebook I also decided to delete my Twitter.
I am leaving Instagram, because that is a source of joy for me. I did get in light trouble for posting a video last week that was perceived the wrong way so I have been cautious. I only post one or two pictures a week though and when I was on tour I broke the habit of scrolling through every picture on my feed each day.
I love Snapchat. I couldn’t bring myself to part with it. I did decide to use it as a messaging app though. Instead of keeping up with everyone’s story or keeping my story updated I am only doing one on one snaps.
So I cut Facebook and Twitter. Still feeling a little shaken from last night combined with feeling free without social media I decided I would keep my phone on airplane mode for the day and complete my disconnect. I wanted to download something from spotify around 11 and saw I had three voicemails. So, going 100% off the grid isn;t an option in case something bad were to have happened. For the rest of the day I just kept my phone on do not disturb. That was if someone called me twice in a row it would ring, but I was able to stay blind to everything else.
I wish I could say I spent my day doing more productive things, exercising, cleaning, studying German, whatever people who don’t have social media addictions do. Instead I played a lot of Tetris, Sudoku, and listened to my audiobook most of the day. I reformatted my computer, did dishes, laundry, and a few small housekeeping things. Definitely not enough to show for a day off without distraction.
I have gotten a few concerned texts of people who think I blocked them. It is funny that people assume that it was personal, because the idea of me off social media is laughable. I am a social media queen! I wish I could have made a post announcing my absence so that no one notices and thinks it was something personal. In my experience though, people only do that to get attention. For that reason I just had to rip the bandaid off quick and easy. I will be back on both social media platforms. It might be at the end of the week, it might be in a week or two. I have entertained the idea of not rejoining until I love 10lbs, until I finish half my online courses, something that would make rejoining social media a reward. Really though what I need to do is wait for the day when I don’t first think “I should post this on Twitter” when something “interesting” happens. The day when I don’t habitually type “Facebook.com” in to the search bar without a second thought. I also need to rejoin when I have the time to go through my Facebook and try to clear out the strangers. I might go through my twitter and clean that up as well or maybe make a new one starting from scratch. I don’t really know.
I do know I can finish my degree in a little over a year, but it will take some hard work and focus. I know that my oversharing could keep me from getting what I want the most in my personal and career lives. I know I will definitely be back on before I take my social media class in July. I can’t see myself taking a class on social media and not using social media. It is hard to read the uncomfortable “did you block me” messages and know that there are probably others that have noticed that won’t say anything. I like how my life looks without a social media addiction. I just need to get to that point. Now I just need to figure out how to access spotify without Facebook…