I Never Would Have Moved to Maine Without Ballroom

Hello from a dripping wet, soggy Maine! The rain arrived Friday night and has kept us drenched since then. Good thing I got the lawns mowed earlier this week. #ThingsISayNow

The rain has made for a cozy, relaxing weekend, except when the dogs need to go out. Even then, it’s not too bad. They don’t care about getting wet and I have bright blue rain boots and a solid rain jacket, so who cares? I took it a step further yesterday afternoon while the power was out briefly and decided to have some fun (see below).

A fellow ballroom dancer shared with me that she’s appreciating how all of the intangible skills that have come out of her dance training, like increased self-confidence, ability to work through challenging dance moves, learning to win and lose gracefully at competitions, have translated well into “real” life. She saw the additional value gained out of all of those expensive private lessons. I responded that I agreed completely! Without those “side effects” of learning to ballroom dance, I never would have moved to Maine.

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Looking Back and then Forward

The response to last week’s blog post was huge! Clearly, I’m not the only one who struggles with reconciling my passion for ballroom with the cost. Before I jump into this week’s thoughts, I wanted to share another older post, which asks the question, “Is it worth competing if the game is rigged?”. This older post is for anyone who feels that their financial situation unfairly affects their placement at competitions because those who (can afford to) compete more get seen more. Familiarity can create an unconscious bias toward dancers who compete more often.

At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if a bias exists or not. What matters is you and your dancing. If you can only afford to compete once or twice a year, do you really want to taint those precious experiences with worries about whether or not judge bias is affecting your results? Wouldn’t you prefer to take advantage of those few moments you have to dress to the nines and perform your heart out?

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House Projects

Well, dancers, I hope you did more dancing than me this past week! I saw the PT this morning (yay, my hips are sore but re-aligned!). I’m looking forward to working with her and getting back to more dancing. In related news, my neck spasmed when I stretched/twisted the wrong way trying to put sunscreen on my back on Friday and I had to get my hair cut with less mobility and a lot more pain. It was real fun trying to lean back enough so the hairdresser could wash my hair! Not to mention making turns in the car to and from the salon. Ouch. My neck issues will be the next thing I tackle with the PT.

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Dead Mice, Zumba and Dance Goals

They say time moves more slowly in the country, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to do. Caring for this house alone could be a full-time gig. There are about 50 acres of forest waiting to be explored and that’s without leaving our property. Inspiration for art, whether it’s dance, photography, painting, etc., is abundant in these natural surroundings. Country living is anything but boring.

The difference I notice as I sit at the kitchen table and listen to the wind in the trees through the open window isn’t that I’ve slowed down since moving here. The difference is that Life around me moves at a less-rushed pace. The manic mood of the city is absent here. The bumblebees and hummingbirds show up every day in the overgrown garden next to the kitchen to collect their pollen and nectar. They aren’t lazy about it; they are consistent and persistent. What they aren’t is frantic. Their work is steady, not hectic. Amazing how they still complete their tasks without buzzing around like their boss is going to set their hair on fire if they don’t appear entirely stressed out.

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Finding My Maine Rhythm

Whenever you move to a new area, you have to go through the task of reestablishing your routines. You have to decide where your glasses and silverware go in your new kitchen, and how to arrange things in your new bathroom. You have to find your grocery store, drug store, dentist, doctor, veterinarian if you’re a fur parent, etc. It can be fun exploring and trying out different places to see what you like best. It can also make you feel like a tourist in your own town while you’re relying on Google Maps to get to the hardware store.

I’ve been trying out different grocery stores over the last couple weeks, but I have to admit that I miss getting my Imperfect Foods delivery every week. It was so convenient, the produce was great, the customer service was awesome, and they kept adding new and fun products. Alas, until my mom moves up (she volunteered to do our food runs), I have to resort to doing my grocery shopping in person.

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This is it.

This is it, people! This is not a drill! In 24 hours, The Girl with the Tree Tattoo is pulling up her roots and transplanting them to the opposite corner of the country. She has said her farewells and figured out how to get most of her stuff packed into a ’96 Subaru station wagon named “My Girl Friday”. Only thing left to do is get on the road.

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Moving Sale! And Giant Forest Trolls

Happy 4th of July everyone! And to my fellow fur parents and their fur babies, hang in there. It’s almost over.

People around us have been shooting off fireworks all week, so it’s been really rough for my boys. Yesterday evening, we drove up and down the coast for about three hours just so they wouldn’t be at home, panicked and waiting for the next bomb to drop. We’ll be doing the same tonight.

In more exciting and happier news, we hit the road for Maine in just a week! I’m working to consolidate my belongings so there won’t be any problems fitting them into my new-to-me station wagon. Aligned with that goal, I want to announce a special Moving Sale at practiceballroomdance.com! Help me clear out some inventory before I hit the road AND set yourself up for dancing success with free shipping on everything through July 9.

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