Dancers, please welcome Megan Cross to the blog! Megan has been learning ballroom for just under a year. She started with Fred Astaire Dance Studios of Laguna Hills, CA in the middle of the pandemic and has already conquered a team match and two showcase performances, and is preparing for the Fred Astaire World Championships! Like your host, Megan is also a writer. She recently turned her passion for vintage into a blog called The Vintage Love Letter. I was eager to sit down with her and hear about her initial impressions of ballroom dance and her experiences during the first year of her dance journey.Continue reading
When Passions Change – An Interview with the Founders of Dancing Ox Coffee
Last time, I wrote about how this ballroom dance thing is so much more than a hobby for a lot of us. It’s a passion. We take it just as seriously as any other commitment in our lives. We practice our steps under our cubicle desk at work and down grocery store aisles. We use all of our vacation time on competitions. The dance studio is our second home.
But what happens if we start to feel…less than passionate about ballroom dancing? What if the experience starts to lose its sparkle? What if something else begins to have a stronger pull?
When You’re Serious About Your Ballroom Dance “Hobby”
To the majority reading this, nothing I write will be new or surprising. You all know what I’m talking about before I even start. Maybe your non-dance friends will gain some insight if you forward the article to them.Continue reading
It’s Not What You’re Called, It’s How You Show Up
More than once in the past week, the issue of labels has come up. Labels like “student” and “teacher”, or “amateur” and “professional.” Seeing as I’m making new efforts in 2018 to own who I am, I thought I’d prattle on about this for a bit.
Pro Vs. Am Attitude and Perspective
While I was at Embassy Ball, I was interviewed by FloDance, a division of FloSports. It’s like an online sports channel, focused on dance and specifically ballroom. The site has really great content with a mix of articles and videos, including two articles I wrote for them (check them out here and here)! I’m excited about this site and hope it brings more awareness to this art/sport, as well as brings to light issues that are overlooked, like the one that inspired this post.
Interview with Nicholas Barkley: Dancing with Demons
As follow-up to their joint interview in April, I had asked Elizabeth Thomson and Nicholas Barkley if they would be willing to do individual interviews and share more of how ballroom has impacted their lives. Liz shared her struggles with PTSD and how ballroom brought her back to life in May. Now, we get to hear from Nick!
Countdown to Embassy: 18 Days – The Little Things
Excuse my language, but shit, is it really less than 3 weeks until I compete at Embassy Ball? It wasn’t even that long ago that I danced at Desert Classic.
It’s still weird to be doing a third competition this year and even weirder that each one has been only 2 or 3 months apart. Weird in a good way though.
It’s got me thinking about what’s changed or what I’ve done differently this year for these three competitions to be possible. I’m one of those people who get stuck on the idea that I just need that one big key thing to happen and then everything will work out. But really, it ends up being a bunch of smaller things that add up.
A Review of Desert Classic 2017 – A Matter of Perspective
Another week, another competition. Ha, I wish! Nonetheless, I’ve officially completed my second competition of 2017. Thank goodness my passion is an indoor sport. It’s 118°F here today! I prefer hot to cold, but this heat is a little much. I’m still at the hotel and I did go to the outdoor lap pool this morning around 9am to swim a few laps. It was only 96 at that point.
If you follow me on social media, you already have an idea of how my dancing went yesterday. If not, feel free to pop over to one of my accounts and check it out (links in the side bar). I’ll wait.
Finding Time Vs. Making Time
It’s a rainy Sunday here in Southern California. Perfect weather to stay in, get some house chores done, and do some writing! While laundry was tumbling and turning in the washer and dryer, I finished reading another ballroom book over breakfast. Next, I was going to sit down and write my review. Thoughts for my own next book started flitting around my head though. I also needed to put together the article for the interview I did with another ballroom dancer. Then I started thinking about my own dancing and how I should review my waltz and do more work on learning the tango routine. I knew the competition I was aiming for would get here faster than expected. Speaking of competing, I wondered how long would it take to find a suitable amateur partner. I just started posting on social media this past week that I was officially in search of one. I needed to do more cross-training and recommit to regular stretching too. I should also do another assessment of my finances and figure out where the remaining comp money was coming from. Then there were the other investments I was thinking about making this year. Tax time was also coming up. I needed to get my business structure solidified.
Pivots and Head Congestion
Recovery from the flu has been frustratingly slow. My energy is still not at 100%. I go to bed around 8:30pm. I have this lingering congestion in my head and chest that refuses to leave, no matter how much medicine I throw at it. And I have developed painful knots in my neck and shoulder, a combination of coughing for over two weeks and working in my lesson on Tuesday as hard as I was two months ago, without consideration of the fact that I haven’t been working my body that hard for two months.
But my hip connection is feeling solid!