Monday, September 2, 2019

Websites for Improving Your Ballet Technique

Here is another ballet post for my fellow dancers out there! Would you leave me a comment to let me know you are there? Let me know what you think about these resources and if you know of any others!

The school year has begun and I am so excited to start teaching ballet! The realities of having retired my career in professional dance have hardly set in, at least not in the way I was expecting. I had been dancing for so long, so intensely, striving for my own perfection, that I thought to come to a halt so abruptly would be stifling...but hardly! I am just so excited for what is to come my way this next season with teaching! I guess my mind is just so occupied with all the new things. I wonder if melancholy emotions will set in later. Who knows. All I know is that I'm beyond thrilled to transition out of a career that requires so much self-focus, and am ready to pour into the next generation of dancers! I am eager to encourage and build them up with solid ballet education and hope to spark their passion for it. I suppose whether one is a student or teacher, we all have goals and achievements we desire to reach this year. Today in this blog post, I want to share with you some of my favorite free online resources for dance students and teachers alike, resources that might just help bring us all a little closer to reaching our dreams this year. How lucky our generation is in this day and age to have such easy access to so much valuable and enriching information! Enjoy these resources!



Started by a fellow CPYB alumni of mine, one of my favorite things about David King's wonderful resource, A Ballet Education, is the comprehensive directories it provides featuring the top ballet schools around the country and world that are very helpful to students and parents. This website also offers an informative magazine one can subscribe to in order to access stories and articles relevant to all ballet students and ballet enthusiasts of our day. But if we are talking free, this website also has a wonderful blog with a plethora of amazing articles that expound on how to master and correctly execute certain ballet steps, as well as other articles that address proper ballet placement and alignment.  Dispersed throughout the articles are sketched-out pieces of artwork done by the talented David King, often of fashionable ballerinas paired with his analyses.


Don't you just love the humor in the title of this website, I love how this website established by Alessia (who knows her stuff) promotes ballet as a fun healthy way of life for the trained dancer but also for the average joes out there too.  She is right to advertise that ballet has so many benefits for anyone brave enough to explore it, and I love how her knowledge and education are made so accessible through her website with the online classes and programs offered that you can sign up for. Though the classes are not free, you can find workout plans that are, as well as an excellent blog with lots of fun and helpful articles on how to improve your dancing. Look for Lazydancertips on Youtube too!


I absolutely love this website! In this day and age with people being all the more visual, this website offers a database full of helpful video clips of experienced dancers demonstrating steps and reputable instructors sharing their methods for teaching them. Among the categories are Corrections, Combinations, and Insights.

I think we all know how helpful YouTube can be for learning just about anything. Below I will share some of my favorite YouTube channels to follow. If you are a dancer and are unfamiliar with these channels, I highly recommend you subscribe pronto!

looking for "insights into the ballet world and how to improve at dance as well as beauty and lifestyle tips?" Check out Kathryn's Channel where her goal is "to help dancers improve and achieve their dreams as well as open up the ballet world to non dancers." 

Check out Twin Talks, Former professional ballet dancer turned Mindset & Transition Coach, helping dancers overcome the difficulties of life as a dancer with a mindset that fuels their best work.

Former professional ballet dance Claudia Dean's Channel. Your Specialist in Private Ballet Coaching and Lifestyle videos.

Ballerinas By Night is an education and support community for adult ballet dancers. We are working to raise awareness about adults who are beginning or continuing their dance education, while providing information that can help class work be more successful.


That's all folks!
I hope you get a chance to check some of these out!
Dancers, let me know if you find these kinds of posts helpful.
Thanks for stopping by! 

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Sunday, August 18, 2019

Making Lancaster County Home

Wow! I don't think I have ever swiped my plastic so much in one month, as I have this past August! Moving from one state to another sure is an expensive business, especially when moving to Pennsylvania! There is a fee for everything in Pennsylvania! After spending lots of money getting my car and drivers license squared away, getting background checks done for all my new teaching jobs, and buying the everyday household items needed to furnish my studio apartment with, I am finally beginning to feel settled. I feel like up until now, I have been so occupied with running around to and fro, like a crazy person, trying to get everything accomplished before the school year starts where I will then finally officially start teaching on staff year-round with Silver Springs Dance Conservatory, and Cavod Academy of the Arts. I've been such a busy girl lately, and now I'm a broke one. I have nothing left in my pockets but lent! I won't be leaving my home anymore this month, not for anything!!! Unless it is to leave to make more money somewhere. You can giggle because I am exaggerating (but only a little ☺) Times get tight sometimes, but I am happy.


"I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content WHATEVER the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through CHRIST who gives me strength."

- Philippians 4:11-13


It is good to be back blogging! Right now I am at the Barnes and Noble in town at the Red Rose Commons. It is not quite the same as the quaint Willie Morris Library on Jacksonian Plaza that I used to blog at all the time when I lived in Jackson MS. I guess I will have to find a new quaint place to blog at. I will have to check out the library here not far from where I live and let ya know how it is! I hope you like my "Weekend Whatevers" because here are 10 more for ya!

 1. I kinda wanna see this movie. ☺
2. Have you guys seen the new Ballet Magnificat website!? If not go check it out! It's updated and looks great!

3. I am so obssessed right now with Ben Platt's song Grow As We Go and it's video.
4. When things are tight, the first things I cut from my grocery list are the nonessentials such as chewing gum. I really miss this right now. haha. Take my word for it! This gum is the best tasting chewing gum you will ever taste in your whole life. It's like mint, but sweeter! It is hard to find but I can always count on Walmart to have it stocked. And did you check out the link? Amazon has it for less then 3 dollars! Who buys gum off Amazon?
5. Something else I am really missing right now is this. I am thankful for iheart radio that keeps me connected to "Hallellujah FM", my favorite radio station based in Jackson MS.

6. Has anyone ever heard of a "Noodle Board"? I had no idea what they were until I came across the concept on pinterest. Now I want one for my apartment! Especially this one on Etsy!

7. I love getting room sprays from Bath and Body Works. I went there the other day to get one for my new place and ended up trying a new one called Crisp Morning Air. It smells like a man, more than I initally thought. Not bad. If you like that sort of thing go check this out. I think I will get another scent next time.

8. This has yet to be publicized, but dear readers, I want you to be the first to get a load of this end-of-summer sale happening at LCDancewear for a limited time, while supplies lasts! All Shirt Skirts ordered in Tie-Dye are going on sale 30% off up until the last day of summer, September 22nd, so I'd get a jump on it if I were you! 
9. For anyone out there that loves to travel just as much as me, and loves saving a buck or two or lots more, you have to get this app I've just discovered! As described by google, "Hopper predicts flight prices with 95% accuracy up to 1 year in advance. No ads, no spam, no stress — just accurate predictions and the easiest way to book and save."

10. Lastly, I would like to leave you with this AMAZING note worthy quote I heard in church by David Dickson, “I have taken all my good deeds and all my bad deeds, and cast them … in a heap before the Lord, and fled from both, and betaken myself to the Lord Jesus Christ, and in him I have sweet peace!”

...Like I said things are finally starting to slow down a little for me...
before they pick up again I suppose. I only have one more week before I start 
teaching with Cavod and I am so excited about it! Most things have fallen into 
place quite well, though I am still trying to find a third job,
possibly a hotel front desk agent?! That is what I'm praying for anyway. 
I think I would be good at it and would meet lots of interesting people!
I guess we'll see!

I hope you liked those "Weekend Whatevers"!
Let me know what you think about this kind of blog format and if you think
I should continue to do them! Keep a lookout for my apartment tour post 
which will be going up soon!

Comment, follow, subscribe, to keep up with my adventures,
and let me know what you want to here about next!
Thanks for stopping by!

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Tuesday, August 6, 2019


Hello Readers! SO many things have happened in my life since I last updated you! All good things I suppose, I just don't know where to begin! I guess I'll pick up where I left off!

"If you are not growing, you are dead"
- anonymous

(click to enlarge)
In my last blog post, I reported to you about my final experience performing as a professional ballerina on tour with Ballet Magnificat. A night to remember, my final bow can be viewed HERE. Special thanks to my dear friend Ashley for capturing this footage for us. Even though May 10th marked the end of my touring career, I still assumed my position with Ballet Magnificat until the end of last month where then I officially retired myself from the world of professional dance. 

So what is next, you ask? Well, before I jump into that I would like to take a moment to touch on the amazing month I had this past July. It would be outrageous of me not to mention it! Every July, for the past nine years of my life, I've had the wonderful opportunity and privilege of participating in Ballet Magnificat's Summer Dance Intensive, my first year as a student, and each succeeding year after that as a ballet teacher and counselor to the students. This year I was put in charge of shepherding eleven 12-to-14-year-olds in the dorms. A splendid group of girls, they are pictured to the right. My responsibilities to them included, but were not limited to living in the Belhaven University dorms with them, caring for them, praying for them, planning weekend activities, and leading bible studies for them. It is Ballet Magnificat's busiest but also most exciting time of year! We all love it! The Ballet Magnificat Summer Dance Intensive is so much more than just an intensive for the students to perfect their ballet technique, but is also a time of intense growth spiritually as well, for students and counselors alike! I was blown away this summer by God's unabated presence, and by witnessing the awesomeness of his power soften hearts and change lives.

SO NOW that my last summer dance intensive with Ballet Magnificat is all said-and-done, and my contract with them, expired, the season of fun transitions begins! It was only five days ago that I pack up more than just my suitcase this time, but my whole life, into two vehicles and with the help of my parents, trekked back up north to Pennsylvania where I am originally from. 

I am thrilled to share with you that for the 2019-2020 school year as I reestablish a new life for myself in the Lancaster County PA area, I will be entering into a new career teaching ballet at both Silver Spring Dance Conservatory and the Cavod Academy of the Arts in New Holland. 
These days I feel like I'm on a rollercoaster though! There are so many unpredictable ups, and downs, and twists, and turns, in this season of new opportunity, and I have so much to plan for that I've never planned for before. When my thoughts are directed toward my future, it's as staring at a plain white canvas just waiting to be painted on, and transformed into something new. I can't remember the last time I've experienced so much newness, all at the same time. Sometimes I get scared by it all; scared to "make the first brush stroke" so to speak. I don't know how to prepare for what the Lord is going to create in and through me. I don't know "what colors" to start with on my canvas. And I question, I almost fear, and wonder what this "masterpiece" will look like in the end. Some say taking the first couple steps is the hardest. Honestly, informing Ballet Mag leadership about my decision to leave this past January was a breeze, But a semester later, reality sets in now that I am actually in Lancaster with a long to-do list before me that though is daunting, I know will ensure a smooth transition into what's next for me.

"You are the Potter and I am the clay
You are the Artist and I am the paint
You are the Writer and I am Your song
I will be Your instrument my whole life long"
- shannon wexelberg

I've spent most of my first week here getting housing details squared away. I think I've found the perfect studio apartment for myself which I am so excited about, and hope to be all moved into by the end of the week, just in time before I get started teaching next week with the new organizations. There is a special little nook in the apartment I plan to dub as my crafting corner. I am dying to get all of my craft and sewing supplies unpacked so I can get Lilly's Creations back up and running again. Should I take pictures of my modest little home to share with you? Let me know in the comment section down below if an apartment tour would be something you'd be interested in seeing. Maybe I'll also do a blog post sharing my best moving tips or another on small-space living. Let me know if those ideas interest you and while you're at it, If you have any questions or ideas of your own on what I should blog about next then I want to hear! Let me know!

Lancaster Country Horse And Buggy spotting. A new normal.

So, I presume my blog will change shape slightly. Naturally, you can expect that I'll be dishing out a bit more content about Lancaster County and teaching ballet, and a bit less content about traveling across country and performing ballet. At the outset, this may sound like a step down from my previous lifestyle, what may have been perceived as an adventurous and somewhat glamorous way of life, But join me in faith believing that Lancaster Country has a lot more to offer than any of us even know. Not to mention, the Holy Spirit has reassured me the adventure has just begun!
Thanks for stopping by!
If you're new then welcome! If you are a returning visitor then you deserve
 my deepest thanks for sticking around! I know things might be changing 
a bit around here, but I want to reassure you that you won't be seeing an end
to me posting about ballet, travel, and other relevent topics.
Those things will forever be a part of me. 
You can only expect MORE! More of everything!
Life is never boring.
Now go live it!
Be blessed!

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