toddstewart

Rhode Island = Awesome. Me = Grateful.

December 6th, 2012 at 11:17 pm by under The Rhode Show

Todd Stewart Laughing and Loving Life.

A lot of things have happened this past week.  Every road of my life evidently started coming to an end.  While I do use the term, “end,” I do not mean “end” in the sense of “conclusion” and “expiration.”  Rather, I use it in the sense of “new beginnings.”  You see, everything in life has endings.  Movies have endings, books have endings, and even tangible items have endings. Every plant begins with a seed and then after time, turns back to the earth.  Everything in life has a beginning and an end.  There is a sense of peace in this idea, if one takes time to understand and accept it, in that if you understand that things in life will eventually come to an end or break (a favorite plate for example) then you won’t be disappointed when it does and will feel gratitude and thankfulness toward the time that you had with it.

This week has been a week full of “endings.”  On Monday I finished my first graduate class on Organization Communication.  Tuesday I finished my wonderful opportunity with The Search for a Star Contest. And just yesterday I finished my other graduate class in Human Communication Theories.  Endings have been churning around me like a hasty hurricane. However, my outlook on life is similar to the life lesson stated above in that as opposed to getting sad, I begin to reflect feelings of gratitude.

So just like every swan song, last hurrah, and final curtain call, I say thank you.  Thank you to the Rhode Show for all the wonderful opportunities that have been presented to me.  Thank you for the infinite laughs, the adoring relationships and the ability to explore the nuances of what it means to be a Rhode Islander. I will take this gratitude with me wherever I go in life and I thank you for instilling it.

Life is not about what you accomplish or what you gain, it’s about the people you affect along the way and I know that this wonderful experience has made me love and cherish the human spirit even more.

Thank you Rhode Island for letting me be a part of your family.

Once again, CHEERS!

Todd Stewart


A T-Stew Adventure

December 1st, 2012 at 5:51 pm by under The Rhode Show

I have to say, our third assignment was by far my most favorite assignment to film.  The general story idea was to encompass what it means to live a day full of fun in Rhode Island yet still staying on a budget.  For me I thought that would be pretty easy…until it was time to think of ideas.  So many thoughts came to mind, yet with me being both the camera man and interviewer, some of my ideas were, shall I say, hard to film with a one man show.  I first thought about going swimming and strapping a GoPro to my head, but then I realized it was almost December and a tad bit nippy for my taste. Then the thought of maple syrup came to mind, and I figured I could get a maple syrup tour…if that sounds like a good idea to you that’s okay, I was totally in the same boat as you! One problem…they make syrup later in the winter…scratch that. Then I thought I could go rock climbing…Yeah I like that idea, rocks, chalk, heights…sounds pretty adrenaline packed! Only problem, if I wanted to get the shots I wanted then that would mean I would have to hold the camera while climbing…I can hear the conversation now, “So, let’s go over this again…how did you brake the camera Todd?” Yeah.  No rock climbing, sorry.  Finally in the midst of my brain storming session, I decided to take the viewers on what I like to call, “A good ole’ fashion T-Stew Adventure!”  I liked the idea, and I stuck with it!

SO! Here are the requirements that you must have in order to have a good adventure.

  1. You need a full tank of gas because you never know where the road may take you.
  2. You need a good mix CD. For this story, I had a killer one that I was be-bopping and scatting all over to Here it is…

My Mix CD

  1. Finally, you need an open mind and adventurous spirit.  This, above all, is the most important aspect to any adventure in life.  If you have the right mindset, you can find the good out of any scenario life has in store for you. Life likes SPEED. Don’t delay, don’t second-guess and most importantly, don’t doubt…

 


     Now that those three items are checked off, you’re officially ready to hit the road. For my third package I took my “T-Stew adventure” to the East Bay Bike Path.  Why? Simply because where else can you get fresh air like that? Well yes, a lot of places, but this is different.  Getting to ride, run or walk from Providence to Bristol is a special journey.   You have it all, the city, the woods, and the ocean, what more could an adventurist ask for? NADA!I have to let you in on a little secret.  You ready? Want to know? Okay, I cave, here it is.  The stretch from the Audubon Society to Independence Park in Bristol is hands down the best part.  Something about those tall grasses near the Audubon Society gets me every time.  I guess I have a thing for tall grass.  Weird?… Naaaaa!  For this reason, when there is a light breeze you can hear it rustling through the trees and tall grass…it’s pretty blissful if you ask me! 

Anyways, enough of my hooting and hollering…I hope you enjoy the package! And next time your looking for a fun, family friendly, healthy, AND FREE adventure, I highly advocate hitting up the East Bay Bike path!

Until next time….CHEERS!

 

Todd Stewart

 


A Stewart Thanksgiving

November 24th, 2012 at 6:42 pm by under The Rhode Show

In my family, Thanksgiving, and any other holiday for that matter, usually means that from the moment everyone arrives, bellowing laughter rushes through the whole house until the day is over.  This isn’t the type of laughter that consists of a few Ha-Ha and He-He’s, no, this is the laughter that sends pains to my stomach, buckles my knees, and causes the back of my head to hurt because my grin is so wide.   This is the laughter that makes people live until age 100 while still looking only 50.  This is what I like to call…raw laughter.

The Stew Crew!

This year specifically I have noticed that as all the siblings and cousins get older and embark on new chapters in their lives, getting together becomes harder and harder. That is why this thanksgiving I developed a new found respect and admiration for “facetime.”

After dinner was over and before we all started to develop our tryptophan and wine comas, someone yelled, “HEY! Let’s facetime Laura!”  As we all gathered round the kitchen table with the Ipad propped up on a stand, all seven of us crunched and squished together.  “Connecting…” the Ipad read.  Once that connection was established, our laughter went from a 50 to a 100…We were off the charts laughter wise.  We facetimed with brothers, sisters, cousins, aunts and uncles and each branch on conversations consisted on three things, laughter, showing what was “the drink of choice” for the night, and giving our best turkey call.  I’m sure the neighbors, were curious to all the strange noises coming from our house and why our turkey was not cooked yet…little did they know that us Stewart’s know how to make one mean turkey call!

Now, I know my thanksgiving sounds outrageous and crazy…and while it is, my family is truly the best…we like to have fun, laugh and love. And In the midst of all this silliness and goofiness, I realized on thing…I am the luckiest kid alive.  To have a family where everyone adores each other and loves spending an endless amount of time together is truly a blessing.  Every holiday, as we all gather together, I am always reminded that I am beyond blessed to have abundant happiness, raw joy, and everlasting love in my life that is solely provided by my family.  They are the real reason why I can honestly say, “I hit the family lottery!”

I hope all of you had just as wonderful of a thanksgiving as I did.  We are all blessed in our own ways which makes this world such an amazing place to be a part of.  Say thank you for having the ability to be grateful.  Gratefulness is the gateway to love and love is the gateway to a happy and healthy life.

Cheers!

Todd Stewart


He’s a Pinball Wizard

November 15th, 2012 at 1:49 pm by under The Rhode Show

“On your mark.  Get set.  GO!”

This past Tuesday, Will, Michaela and the Search for a Start Top 5 got to put their arcade gaming skills to the test at Dave and Busters.

“I’ll be back!”

Knees bent, hands up, and eyes ready.  As I stand on what looks like a Dance Dance Revolution board (yes, I do know that game) I suddenly realize that there will be no need for doing the moonwalk, YMCA, Charleston or Macarena…the only thing that will be necessary are my CAT LIGHT REACTIONS!  The object of the game was to tap the multiple buttons as they light up in front of you as fast as you could.  Whoever taps the most buttons in the allotted amount of time wins!  Who knew that tapping buttons as they light up would be so entertaining?  Well…now that I think about it….this is me I’m talking about…I love these mildly athletic, speed appropriate, and somewhat mindless games…so this “wacky light tapping game” was right up my alley.

Speed of Light

So far this experience has been absolutely amazing! From the people that I have met on assignments, to the knowledge that I have gained…I have to say that I am loving each and every moment of this competition.  There has not been a day (and I can’t see it happening in the future) where I am not FIRED UP to take part in whatever the Rhode Show has in store for me.  That seems to be the staple of my life, where I enjoy and love everything I do.  I attribute the reason to why this is because of the people and places I surround my life with.  Everyone and everything in my life I have chosen because I know it will make me happy.  Seems logical right?

In the light of this month being November Gratitude Month, I say thank you to the four finalists and Rhode Show cast and crew for making this experience so enjoyable.  I have to say that you all are some of the most genuine, kind, and accepting people I have ever met and I am honored to be in this competition with you all.  Thank you….thank you for everything!

Everyone, enjoy your week and I wish you all a thanksgiving full of gratitude.

 

Cheers!

 

Todd Stewart


Newport and I

November 8th, 2012 at 2:56 pm by under The Rhode Show

Captains log…

In the midst of the bone chilling cold and skin piercing wind that has relentlessly swept through Rhode Island over the past few hours, I have managed to reflect on the past few days.  This reflecting has summoned one thought into my mind…grateful.  Perhaps, incredible, amazing, and marvelous would describe this week quite fine but I felt that grateful was the best word to conclude on.  The reason being because of the people I met along the way and the friendships I made.

It’s Monday morning and the skies are clear! Driving southbound on 295 I have my window open and my arm out. There is nothing better than knowing that the reason why I am driving southbound on 295 is because of my destination…and on this day, my destination was Newport!

The reason why I was there was because this was my destination for my first Rhode Show assignment.  This week’s assignment was, “Living Life,” which means encapsulating Rhode Island in a single story.  While I racked my brain the whole week prior to this shoot, I couldn’t come up with a single idea that represented Rhode Island.  Simply because Rhode Island is a culmination of its citizens and towns that when all come together, create the true essence of what Rhode Island represents.  My thinking in making this package was that I could highlight one town and hopefully turn it into a series where each town gets their own turn being highlighted and then before we know it, the whole series gives the true definition of what Rhode Island is!

I park my car and hit the town in style with my tripod in one arm and the camera in the other! First stop, the water front.  I need my ocean fix. After enjoying the sights and smell I head to my ritual stop…the Coffee Grinder.  One of my hobbies in life is coffee brewing.  I like to consider myself the character from Saving Private Ryan who thoroughly enjoys and takes pride is brewing a perfect cup of coffee…”It’s all in the grinds Sergeant.”

Once the caffeine has hit my blood stream, I head out to see what I truly appreciate Newport for…its architecture.  In my opinion, there is nothing better than being engulfed in history.  I go to the houses built in the 1700’s, I see the mansions, the cobble stone, the old cemeteries, the historical churches…I entrench myself with what, “colonial” means.  Call me a nerd, but I love it!

After my own personal history tour that was guided by yours truly, I head out to Brenton Point to witness one of Mother Nature’s greatest gifts to us.  While most of the time this daily gift goes unrecognized, I seize every opportunity to never miss it…that’s right, a perfect sunset.  There is something peaceful and calming about witnessing it and if I have the opportunity to be there, I will never miss it.

Overall, my first Rhode Show assignment was a pleasure.  For the first time, Newport served as a classroom where I experimented what worked with a package and what didn’t.  I learned how to shoot and report all while being unassisted.  I tripped a few times but quickly got up, brushed myself off and pressed on.  As always, this was an experience I will never forget.

Cheers

- Todd Stewart