“Tea for Two” 💍

Posted on

This #WeeklyWednesday is certainly the most special, eventful, and personal one I’ve shared! I hope you enjoy being part of our news!

“Tea for Two” was written in 1924 and featured in the Broadway musical “No, No, Nanette,”  with music by Vincent Youmans and lyrics by Irving Caesar (though I modified the second verse from his original). My accompaniment is from a player piano! It’s US Roll 42296, originally played by Robert Billings.

An especially big thank you to my exceptional #NYU dance instructor, Natalie Wisdom, for her original choreography! We learned this soft shoe for our musical theatre dance course this past semester and I modified it here to include a partner 😊😊Thanks, Natalie, for all of your help and for believing in and encouraging me!!

Thank you also to my mom, Barb Wagner, for all of her help with videoing (both recording and so many other things, like ironing our clothes)! We recorded this at Bayview Park in Pensacola, FL. Thanks to my cousin John for helping Chris with his actual proposal! And, thanks to my fiancé, Chris, for wanting to share the news with you this way (it was a lot of fun to make!) – and for planning to spend the rest of our lives together ♥️ 

Chris also helped with videoing, and he, Mom, and I put tons of time into choosing which video angles to include 🤣 Grateful my sore throat improved enough to record the audio this week!

And thanks to you for watching this and sharing this special time with us! 

#AshleyWagnerArts

End of NYU semester Vlog 😀

Posted on

Hey, guys! Getting over a cold 😷 so in today’s #WeeklyWednesday, I’m just chatting and linking to a previously-shared video that means a lot to me:

It was a beautiful spring day in #NYC, so my kitties and I spent a little time out on the fire escape – (I see now why that’s a “thing” 😉). My second semester of grad school at NYU is coming to an end 😮 so I thought I’d share what that’s looking like (realized I left out another paper I have due; accepting tokens of sympathy 😉)! Can’t believe my first year is nearly done!

Books I mentioned:

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon

Deborah Tannen works (sociolinguistics scholar)

Conversational Style: Analyzing Talk Among Friends

I’m also listening to her audiobook of “You’re the Only One I Can Tell: Inside the Language of Women’s Friendships” on Libby (which is a fantastic library app! Thanks, Los Angeles Public Library, for your amazing selection of digital content!)

I also shared about my Amahi ukulele, purchased from Tringas Music (they’re great!) in Pensacola, FL, over spring break; I really love playing it! It’s a great way to relieve stress after a busy day. Ukulele is relatively easy to learn and I’d highly recommend trying one out yourself!

I hope this is (at least somewhat) interesting to see – thank you, as always, for watching and caring about what I’m up to! I hope this finds you well 💜

#AshleyWagnerArts

NYC Studio Apartment Tour + Murphy Bed!

Posted on

Happy #WeeklyWednesday! Today’s video is a tour of my studio apartment in NYC, featuring my Murphy wall bed, which has dramatically improved my quality of life!! I find videos like this interesting, fun, and helpful (especially when looking for tiny living tips, where every inch and item owned matters!); I hope you do, too, and thanks for taking the time to watch mine!

Products in the video (none of this is sponsored!):

From my evening/morning routine:

Details:

  • My studio apartment is approximately 300-315 square feet (~28-29 square meters). Ceiling height is 10 feet (3 meters), which lends a more spacious feel and allows for additional storage. 
  • My Murphy bed is queen-sized, and I have a 10-inch mattress (I believe it’s this one). The recommended thickness is 8-10 inches, and if you want to store the bed with thick bedding/pillows, you’d need a slimmer mattress than I have. The couch and movable ottoman have some storage space as well.
  • This model is not freestanding (most are not) – but it only uses 2 screws to attach to the wall behind it.
  • The Minima is a quick-ship option! It still took a few weeks to arrive, but many others can take several months. My boyfriend and I were able to assemble it ourselves.
  • *** The sofa is not attached to the bed cabinet! *** Essentially, you receive a complete Murphy bed/cabinet (looks a lot like this one) and a separate (backless) sofa. Why am I so excited about this? Because if I had known that, I would’ve asked if I could purchase the furniture in stages to make it more affordable (but have a real bed initially). Also, if you’re a DIY-er, I’m sure you could find a less-expensive sofa-alternative! Further, being able to move the sofa makes cleaning and other tasks easier, and I’ve had no issues with it slipping or moving away from the cabinet.
  • Ask for discounts/special offers! Though it was not drastically less expensive, I didn’t pay the full price shown. And all of it was still less than the broker fee for my apartment… (apart from the very high rents, the process to get a place in New York is very expensive and complicated!)
  • There was generally very little damage to the items in shipping – however, the ottoman did arrive with a wood support piece broken, and Expand has still not resolved this… Once they do, I’ll store my pillow inside the ottoman… Customer service was good and pretty quick on the ordering end; not so much on this side – but I also haven’t been very diligent about following up with them either because, well, grad school…
  • This bed/sofa is perfect if you plan to use it every day and really value the feel of a bedroom. I could not afford a bedroom in my Manhattan neighborhood, and I truly feel like I have one now! I’d recommend it for any space if the price isn’t an issue for you. If it is and you only plan to use the bed for occasional guest usage, there are a lot of less-expensive freestanding options (here’s an example).

Other stuff you may or may not care about:

  • I was trying to save space and money when I moved in – so initially I tried floor sleeping, but didn’t love it – then an IKEA sleeper sofa – then added a mattress topper – which made it more comfortable, but a pain to regularly fold up…
  • A note about the IKEA Friheten… it’s a pretty good, budget-friendly option, but they’ve modified the US version somewhat in the last couple of years – and I find it less comfortable than the older model. I first bought a Friheten when I moved back to CA in 2016 and found it very comfortable as my primary bed (also with a mattress topper). The model I bought in 2018 in NY has what seem like superficial changes, but I find it less comfortable for daily sleeping.
  • Because I’m home a lot and tend to be pretty affected by my environment, I ultimately ended up going with the Murphy bed/sofa option (and I love it!!). If I’d realized how much a difference it would make and that I could buy the pieces in stages, I would’ve purchased the Murphy bed initially and not gotten the IKEA sleeper sofa. Since I do have it (and managed to fit everything, including space for yoga and dance practice – this was literally calculated down to the inch!), I continue to use it and like that I can accommodate overnight guests.
  • I was looking for a Murphy bed/sofa combo – particularly one that came in leather or faux leather because of cat hair concerns – which limited my choices. 

Thank you for taking the time to watch (and read this)! I hope it is useful – and please feel free to ask further questions!

Also – would you be interested in a separate video of some of my morning and evening “rituals”? As a performer, self-care is incredibly important for me to be able to do my work – particularly to handle the emotional strain it can be to tell certain stories (apart from ordinary life and grad school stresses!). I’d love to share some of what has been working for me if that’s of interest 🙂

#AshleyWagnerArts

Marie Forleo/Rick Hanson: How to Build Unshakeable Inner Strength Using Neuroscience

Posted on

This video and research really resonated with me today, and I hope you also find it useful! I enjoy the content of many of Marie Forleo‘s videos – particularly her interviews. This one features Rick Hanson, a psychologist specializing in neuroplasticity and Senior Fellow of the Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley.

I first learned of the GGSC in 2015 and have benefitted greatly from their research and public content. In 2016, I took their (free!) Science of Happiness course and would highly recommend it, particularly if you’re interested in positive psychology and/or looking for ways to live a more fulfilled life.

Let It Go ~ Yoga with Adriene

Posted on

This practice was just what I needed today! I thought I’d share it in case it’s what you need, too 🙂

Yoga has become a vital part of my wellness routine over the last several years. During this time of life transitions, one of the challenges has been finding a new yoga home each time I’ve moved (6 major moves in just over 4 years) – a place where I love the people, classes – and also prices.

I relocated to NYC for graduate school last August (2018) – and between time and financial constraints, I haven’t yet tried out studios here. Last semester, my yoga practice had dwindled to one sun salutation each morning… I was really noticing the effects of this, so over our semester break, I began a daily at-home practice using the excellent, free videos from Yoga with Adriene. I hope you’ll try some of her practices – and that you’ll find them as beneficial as I do!

There are practices in a variety of yoga styles (as well as pose tutorials) and videos of all lengths – from full classes to 5-minute stress-busters like this one:

I most often choose a 20-30 minute hatha video in the mornings – and I want to start incorporating her wind-down videos before bed!

I’ve been able to keep practicing nearly every day this semester: I’ve made the conscious choice to prioritize my well-being – and to acknowledge and be grateful for the effort I make toward that end. I’m really grateful for resources like Yoga with Adriene that help me refresh and renew! #FindWhatFeelsGood #ProgressNotPerfection

If you’d like more recommendations, here are playlists of some of my favorites:

Yoga Quickies favorites:

Longer practices I’ve saved to try soon:

And saved Yoga Quickies to try soon: