Monday, January 30, 2017

Where Art Thou January?

Wowzers! Maybe this occupied optimist has been a little too occupied for her own good. Where has January gone!? This year so far for me, has been off to a great start, though I don't expect you to know that due to my lack of posting. I am so sorry! How do you think I can make it up to you? It is not that I am too busy for you, but please know that whenever I seem to disappear from my blogging, it only signifies that spectacular things have been going on in my offline life. And you can bet that I will faithfully return to blogging once again and tell you all about it! Wait until you hear about all what I've been up too this month!


Work . 


At Ballet Magnificat, we started the year off "cleaning house"! For the first couple of days back from our holiday break we only took technique classes. Then after class instead of rehearsing, we split into groups and tackled cleaning and organizing our whole facility. It was the perfect way to slowly ease back into things physically. 


We divided and conquered. I was on the 'Storage Unit team' outside! We had great fun! Above, Emily, Hannah, and I pose with our respective tools. We were in charge of labeling, photographing, and recording information regarding all the props and sets found in storage. I believe we got up to about 200 some props and sets!

We found a lot of fun stuff inside storage!

In our parking lot we took the time to neatly refold and organize all our stage backdrops.

Hannah had the great privilege of climbing up on the roof to take all these pictures!
Look at Margot, don't you just love Margot. ^_^

A group picture of our team feeling accomplished, inside our now, very organized and clean storage unit! Here's to hoping it stays that way...


One day this month at the studio, the trainee's had an in-costume rehearsal/performance and we got to be their audience! I absolutely loved that! They are such a talented bunch, and were really entertaining and inspiring to watch! I am so proud of all of them!




...And of course, later in the month, we had our fair share of rehearsing as well!

A video posted by Lillian Marie Ortiz (@oqpiedoptimist) on


Just last week we had students from all around the country come to visit our studios for our annual trainee audition. Talk about talent! The studio has been teeming with excitement since they've been here, with promotions being anticipated, and everybody's wondering the answer to our question of who will be joining our ministry for next season?! Only God knows for now (and maybe Kathy), but we soon will all see!

Isn't this just the SWEETEST audition scene you've ever seen!?


...And then there was that day Donald Trump became President...



Play .


In other news, In all my free time this past month...I have gone a little crazy with my card making!

Look for these new arrivals in my shop soon!


Also, I got this sketch journal for Christmas from my best friend this past year, and so for 2017 I've decided to try and commit to sketching or hand lettering something in it at least once every day. This is an attempt to maintain and further cultivate my creativity on a daily basis, as well as it is for me to seek to improve in my calligraphy skills! I anticipate posting here publicly on my blog each month, daily creative prompts for myself to accomplish. Feel free to hold me accountable, and even join in with me in the fun of participating in my 30 day monthly creative prompt challenges coming soon! Stay tuned!

A few of the sketch/handlettering entries I have done so far


In my normal journal, I've finally started a page for bullet journaling for this year! This is something I've always wanted to try! I've set my page up to record my moods and sleeping patterns. It is so interesting to follow the patterns and see how my daily moods and sleep schedule correspond with one another. Not to mention, I've discovered that bullet journaling this information assists in holding me accountable to leading a more balanced life.





Earlier this month my dear friend, Micky's parents were in town coming all the way from Germany! They invited me over for family dinner where I snapped the picture shared with you below! Such dear people; It was such a sweet time!






A Christian comedy movie called "The Ressurection of Gavin Stone" came out this month featuring actors Brett Dalton, Anjela Johnson, Neil Flynn, Shawn Micheals, and D.B. Sweeney. I went to see it with some friends last Tuesday and I want to tell you all that I ABSOLUTLEY LOVED it, and think that EVERYBODY should go see it! I would describe this film as heartwarming and refreshingly, not overly cheesy! As a Christian myself, I found it to be very encouraging and faith building as the heart of God is clearly portrayed, and well as down right entertaining. It cleverly mocks 'Christianese' in a comical entertaining way without being condemning.

Ya'll got to go see this film! We had a great time!



And Most  Recently :


Tommorrow begins another season of touring for the Alpha Company and I am SO excited! It has been nearly two months since the Alpha company has been on a normal tour traveling domestically, and I miss it! It is what I live for here at Ballet Magnificat! Working hard, preparing, and rehearsing in the studio is great and all, but there is nothing better than going out, sharing Jesus, and presenting our ballets that we've spent so much time perfecting. All of a sudden we have to let go, and let God! ^_^ On this tour we are headed to Florida for some workshops and performances in Cape Coral, Ft. Myers, Orange Park, and Jacksonville. For more details you can check out our booking calendar HERE. For updates sent straight to you inbox pertaining to Ballet Magnificat Alpha and our tours, sign up for my newsletter below! Prayers for this tour appreciated! I am feeling super expectant about what the Lord is going to be doing through us on this tour, and I can't wait to return to you with updates and testimonies of his workings! Thanks to all of you for your prayers and support! Now I better wrap up this blog post and get to packing for this trip...but my dear readers I love you!

- Here's to another great year coming! -






I Hope you had a good first month of the year. February here we come!

Please let me know what you thought about this blog post,
Is there anything you would like to read more about, here at the Occupied Optimist?
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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

The Testimony of Mark Spence

TESTIMONY TUESDAY!

“Return home and tell how much God has done for you.”

~ Luke 8:39

Presenting with excitement, I introduce to you Testimony Tuesdays!!! A testimony by definition is: a formal written or spoken statement, a public recounting of a religious conversion or experience. The Bible commands us in numerous places to bring praise, glory, and honor to our God by proclaiming, declaring, and telling about His marvelous works to others. That is the purpose and heart behind this installment for my Tuesday posts. Each Tuesday (more or less), a testimony will be shared here involving the recounting of salvation, redemption, overcoming, and/or healing just to name a few; A story that brings glory to our God and in which we might be encouraged, spurred on, and challenged with at the same time.The stories that will be shared will either be of my own personal experiences, excerpts from books, testimonies I find via youtube or other media sources, as well as YOURS! I would love to know and give you the opportunity to share here with us a testimony of your own, of whatever fashion that involves the Lord doing a transforming work in your life. Just email me your testimony and I will see what I can do about posting it on a future Tuesday! You may choose to have your name be known or anonymous. I look forward to hearing from you!


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If you know anything about me and my love for evangelism, you would know that I am absolutely in love with the ministry known as Living Waters. Headed by CEO and founder Ray Comfort, Living Waters provides evangelism tools and training that helps Christians share their faith effectively and biblically--the way Jesus did. Today I would like to share with you a video I stumbled upon featuring Mark Spence sharing his testimony. He is the Vice President of Outreach for Living Waters. Aside from Living Waters (which I can't speak more highly about), I have come to also appreciate this new ministry I have discovered called Anchored North. They are the ones responsible for creating the video shared below. The people of Anchored North have a genuine love for Jesus and making him known, and the world wide web is their mission field of choice. They promote that the videos they create are to be used for sharing the gospel. You can find all their videos at their website along with other helpful resources. You can also check them out on Youtube HERE where you can find a great video of them sharing in their own words, an explanation of what they are all about! 



Now, please check out the amazing testimony below of Mark Spence, featuring the awesome, transforming, life-giving, power of God. And be reminded of the depth of love that God has for each and every one of us.




Be Blessed.

Happy Tuesday!
comment, follow, subscribe, and don't be shy! 
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Sunday, January 1, 2017

A New Year! A New Day! A New Life!


“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.
See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland."
~Isaiah 43:18-19

A New Year! A New Day! A New Life! 

by Helen Steiner Rice
 


Not only on New Year's but all the year through
God gives us a chance to begin life anew,
For each day at downing we have but to pray
That all the mistakes that we made yesterday
Will be blotted out and forgiven by grace,

For God in His love will completely efface
All that is past and He'll grant a new start
To all who are truely repentant at heart

And well may man pause in awesome-like wonder
That Our Father in heaven who dwells far asunder
Could still remain willing to freely forgive
The shabby, small lives we so selfishly live,
And still would be mindful of sin-ridden man
Who constantly goes on defying God's Plan

But this is the Gift of God's limitless love,
A gift that We all are so unworthy of,
But God gave it to us and all we need do
Is to ask God's forgiveness and begin life anew.


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