Friday, September 4, 2020

September Is Here!

- A Reflection of Summer In Snap Shots -

WOW! I cannot believe I have just completed my first whole year being back in PA. What an absolutely crazy unconventional year it has been for all of us. I rest assured, knowing it played out exactly how the Lord intended for things to be. Though many tragic historical things have and are still taking place this year, I'm not crazy about all the silly memes that mock 2020, wishing for a do-over, to move on, or wishing it had never happened. Why "throw out the baby with the bathwater?" Don't get me wrong, I am not blind to what has been taking place around the world and on the news, and I've had my share of hardships such as not knowing if I'd be able to make my rent, being quarantined for over 2 weeks not able to visit family, missing out on birthday and holiday celebrations with them during my first year back in PA- finally close enough to have the option to, not to mention experiencing the passing of some dear loved ones this year, BUT my clouds have silver linings. 

"  What  the  enemy  meant  for  evil ,  God  works  it  out  for  our  good . "    

~  Genesis  50:20

There are always blessings to be counted, and during this past season of transitioning back to PA after more than a decade of being away, God has graciously given me so many, even in the midst of a pandemic plagued summer! I haven't had very much time to update my blog this year, well, until quarantine, BUT then things took right off again. I've been so on the go trying to find my rhythm and assimilate into Lancaster PA culture, but now, as I go on year #2 of doing life here as a retired dancer- now teacher, and with the little rest period I am now enjoying between school years, I've found some time to update you about my summer so here we go! 


Well, I finished my first year of teaching with Silver Springs Dance Conservatory and Cavod Academy of the Arts as strong as one possibly could teaching dance online virtually during our COVID-19 Corona Virus outbreak. You will have to check out the video I uploaded of my Cavod IG takeover where I shared what a day in the life of a quarantined teacher is like. There is also an upload of one of the classes I taught from home during quarantine, which you can check out HERE if you are interested in the experience of taking an online virtual dance class from me! Let me know in the comments below if you'd like to see me post more classes like these!

Cavod was actually able to pull off having an in-person recital this year! Though it was rather unconventional, it made for a very special memory and a great way to end the school year! I only wish I took more pictures of it.

When Corona Virus first broke loose in March I took quarantine very seriously. BUT I remember the very first place I left my house to visit after being couped up for so long, my best friend's place for her birthday in May! Something which would normally be very ordinary, visiting my friend, became something extremely special and memorable, not to be taken for granted.

During the month of June and throughout the whole summer it was meeting with these sweet ladies from my church caregroup over zoom that kept me sane. I love my church.

I am also so thankful for all the new friends I am making
from my church's young adults group, SOLA

 For being an introvert, I sure did do a lot of socializing this summer, perhaps the effect of being quarantined for so long. July was SUCH a busy month for me! I am most proud of the Progressing Ballet Technique certification I got the Month of July. I had dreamt of doing it for so long. I can now check that one off my bucket list! ✅

One of my favorite memories from this summer was probably getting to see 4th of July fireworks on City Island, Harrisburg. It had been more than a decade since I had seen fireworks (which are my absolute favorite) due to the fact that I was always so involved in Ballet Magnificat Summer camps during the month of July, which took place on Belhaven University college campus where fireworks never took place. I wasn't going to let, not even a pandemic, stop me from seeing fireworks this year. It was an amazing experience, and because it was like everyone was still afraid to "come out" at that point still, it felt like my friends and I had the whole island to ourselves! 

I had the wonderful opportunity to catch up with several former students, coworkers, and tour acquaintances from my Mississippi/ Ballet Magnificat days, which was so reminiscent. 

-  Good times!  -

At Reston Town Center, VA visiting Maggie, my old house mate

One of the harder times this summer was the passing of my Grandfather Carlos Manuel Oquendo on August 12th. A beautiful service was held for him August 21st that I had the honor of dancing in.


Ironically, I failed to achieve a slower-paced lifestyle this past year, which was just one of the many reasons I was led to retire from professional dance and move back to PA. Perhaps that is just who I am, someone that likes to work a lot, but things are different this upcoming year. I am happy to be teaching more full time with Cavod Academy of the Arts this year. Some new news is that I have sadly decided to let go of my teaching position with Silver Springs Dance Conservatory in an effort to simplify things, though I will sorely miss working there. I have also decided to postpone returning to work at Kitchen Kettle Village until next semester...BUT just when you think I've pulled back earning supplemental income entirely, not so fast! 

I am excited to announce that for this first semester of the school year I've joined Lancaster Bible College's Worship and Performing Arts Department working as an Adjunct Professor of Dance, teaching ballet! I was thrilled to have been presented with this opportunity! We are just one week into the semester and I have absolutely loved getting to work with LBC's theater students so far! I have loved my new schedule working at Cavod this year as well! Things feel like they are really starting to fall into place and settle.

It is amazing how quickly new opportunities can spring up out of nowhere, doors can shut, and how quickly seasons can change. At times it is exciting, other times jolting, but I have so much peace and joy unspeakable, knowing and trusting the Mighty One who is in control of it all and is oh so worthy. I have such a great feeling about this year though. It is going to be a great year, I just know it!

It's not the end, but just the beginning! 😉

Thanks for stopping by! Comment and say Hi!
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  1. Thank you for sharing! Sounds like the Lord is doing a new thing! The Lord bless you!

    1. A new thing, for sure! Thank YOU for leaving a comment and letting me know you stopped by. Blessings and strength unto you! ☺️

  2. I absolutely love your writing. Bove you.😘

  3. So good to be able to read your update! Love and hugs to you on your wonderful new teaching assignment. They are blessed to have you on their faculty.