Thursday, 27 October 2011

Level 3.4, 5, 6 Catch-Up!

It has been a busy busy month. I think for the first time since I've started dancing, it has taken a backseat to other things going on in my mind. 18 weeks pregnant, looking for a house to buy, and dozens of other little things taking up my thoughts and energy. Feel free to check out my baby blog for more pregnancy talk!

Level three. In the past 3 weeks, we've learned Chico 4 Corners and the partner pass, the Water Pot, Wet Dog, Reverse Shimmy, and ASWAT Fade and Circle. It has been challenging to say the least! My favourite out of these moves is probably the Water Pot. Least favourite is the ASWAT Circle - not because it isn't beautiful. I just find it so confusing! That one will definitely need some practice.

Reverse Shimmy is a funny one because I can't do it. Period. Haha. I'll keep trying though I promise. Right now I'm trying to do a Reverse Taxeem and add that shimmy-wiggle to it. If anyone has any other tricks for learning it please let me know! Surprisingly it has a very different feel from the normal ATS Shimmy. You'd think turning up-down-up into down-up-down wouldn't look any different, but when my dance teacher first showed us she reminded me of a flittering fairy! It's very light and bouncy, whereas the regular Shimmy seems more earthy and solid - in my opinion at least.

Chico 4 Corners is fun and energetic. When we learned the partner pass and danced in pairs for about 3 songs straight I don't think I've ever smiled so much at dance! It was such fun. You know that fun moment when you're dancing in a group and the leader turns around and surprises you? There's that second of cheeky giddiness and then you smile and circle into the next position. That's what dancing in pairs is like - but it goes on the whole time! It's interesting too how the chemistry changes a bit depending on you dance with.

Well, Level Three is officially halfway over! I can't wait to start again in January and have more people in the class. After having an overview of all the moves it will be great to really develop them and get them into my head, and more importantly, muscle memory. Hopefully my growing belly doesn't make me too clumsy or unstable!

Question - what's your favourite and least favourite move in level three?

Have a great day everyone :)

Wednesday, 5 October 2011


Our world is fast paced. Things to do, people to see, places to go. People boast to each other about how busy they are, how many important things they have to do in a day. Does anyone ever just sit in quiet? I think some people forget what that even sounds like. Between radio, computers, TV, cell-phones, there is a constant bombardment of marketing and entertainment vying for our attention. You have to consider that perhaps this self-perpetuated soundtrack to our lives may not be entirely beneficial.

My life has been overwhelming lately. Having my first baby, having to move - maybe even buy our first home. Level three, though it is a joy, does add to the stress. There's work, friends, family, appointments and obligations. Then of course there a million other things each day that demand our attention. Sometimes, we know we just need some rest.

The thing we need to know, is that it's okay. We don't have to feel guilty. We're allowed to rest.

Maybe you work a stressful job, or you're a busy mother, or you're just going through a hectic time where life seems to be moving so fast that you can't keep up. Whatever it may be, sometimes the most valuable time you spend can be a time in quiet, in rest. This may be a weekend away, an evening to yourself, or even just a few minutes in the shower where you can take a moment to breathe. Obviously how long you take depends on your obligations, but even the shortest break can do wonders for your spirit - and therefore for those around you as well.

Here are some ideas for your mini get-away:
  • Turn off the car radio and just drive in silence for a while.
  • Go into another room, even the bathroom, and take a few minutes to just breathe.
  • Wake up before everyone else in your home and take some time to read, meditate, or write.
  • Look at your schedule, at obligations you said yes to when you wanted to say no. Clear some of them out - and don't let yourself feel guilty.
  • Tell Daddy he's in charge for a while, lock yourself in the bathroom and enjoy a long steamy bath and glass of wine.
  • Stop at a park on your way home, and if you have time, take a walk around.
  • If you have the babysitters/time/money book yourself a hotel for a night. Enjoy a full 24 hours alone with your thoughts and whatever you enjoy most.

Though I don't do it as often as I'd like, I'm a huge advocate for meditation. Regardless of your beliefs, it can be a great tool to lead a less stressful life and be a more peaceful person. Here is a link to a website I like that provides guided meditations. Some are short, some are longer, depending on how much time you have and what you'd like to focus on. Click here to go to The Meditation Room.

Enjoy whatever rest you give yourself, and return to your life and the ones you love with a refreshed spirit! :)