Tuesday, September 12, 2017

41: The Year of Joy

I turned 41 a couple of weeks ago.  Much like turning 40 last year (you can read that story HERE), nothing happened.  Obviously, if you've read some recent posts, I may have had a little melt down, but that was unrelated to my age.  And now that some time has passed, I feel like I have clarity and resolve that I'm on the right path. 

I decided to apply a theme to my 41st year.  So, this year is the Year of Joy.  I believe I am starting it off with a bang.  NCPP kicked off the season for me only a few days before my birthday.  Our fourth year was another success.  My family had a get-together for me the next day, which was awesome -- all of the babies came to see Aunty.  My birthday week was actually pretty quiet but fun.  The day before my birthday, I went to dinner with friends.  On my actual birthday, I chose to go to class with Janet (Operation Upside Down in full effect!).  Friday night, I went to dinner with friends again.  Then I was blessed with a long weekend.  I got to go to the beach with the family.  I went horseback riding with my sisters and enjoyed a drag show.  Then I walked the Golden Gate Bridge with Jade. 

Oh, the excitement doesn't end there.  One week after my birthday, I got on a plane and flew to Las Vegas to visit my friends at Pole Expo.  While there, I got to relax by the pool and wander the Strip.  I also went to see Magic Mike Live (go see that show, seriously!) and Thunder From Down Under with my amigos. 

I have a ton of awesome things coming up to end the year on a high note.  In a couple of weeks, I go to San Luis Obispo for a yoga retreat with one of the members of my favorite band, Pepper.  A couple of weeks after that, we are taking all of the babies to Disneyland!  And in December, the family is heading back to Vegas for a few days -- to celebrate Seneti's third birthday. 

I am extremely grateful for the life that I have and the people with whom I have crossed paths.  I really am surrounded by an amazing group of people. 

I have started using #365daysofjoy on Instagram and Twitter to share a photo of something that makes me happy every day.  I am also keeping an album on Facebook.  I hope to inspire others to join me.  Even if you don't want to share every single day, I'd love to see what makes you happy.

Here's to 41 being a joyful year filled with family, friends and adventures!  Thank you all for being part of that journey!

Some photos of the things that have brought me joy over the last few months:






This face brings me joy





 

Introducing Colter!






Don't ask...


GISHWHES










I adore how much these cousins love each other















The three amigos!

Friday, September 1, 2017

Operation Upside Down: Month 2

I just completed Month 2 of Operation Upside Down.  And by using the word "completed," I just mean that the month did, in fact, happen.  My last update was from Week 4, and you can read that HERE

August is the month of Northern California Pole Presentational.  We had our fourth annual event on Saturday, August 26.  It is an entire day of pole dancing.  We set up Friday.  Practice starts at 7 AM on Saturday, and the show runs from about 9 AM to 5 PM.  Then we tear it all down.  The entire month of August each year is generally spent collecting and organizing music for 70+ dancers, making spreadsheets, signs and lists, writing the script, gathering information from sponsors and vendors, designing a program, etc.  Basically, I get off work and I go home to park it on the couch and work some more.  I also started doing hospice volunteer work recently, and that has added to my already full plate (although it is rewarding work).  I did make it to a few classes sprinkled throughout the month, however, I was certainly not in gain-strength mode.  Last night was the final day of August --  my 41st birthday -- and my final chance to squeeze in a class before month 2 ended. 

Do I feel stronger?  Yes and no.  I kept up my yoga practice, and I also tried lyra during the month of August (I did a lot better than I expected).  I am sure I have mentioned before that I gauge my general strength based on how I feel during "chaturanga."  My chaturanga is decent right now.  I don't crash chest first into the floor as I start to lower.  However, when I tried chopper last night, I felt awkward and weak again.  Perhaps it was because I hadn't choppered all month.  I feel like Janet really has to push me into the move.  Ellen had mentioned last week that I may want to try kind of pushing off of Janet's arm so I'm having to push my own ass into the move.  I worry I'd break Janet.  She's mighty but she's so tiny. 

So anyway, here are some videos from August.  Slow and steady wins the race, right??

Starting Month 2:



Practicing on vacation even:



First lyra class (don't wanna go backwards):



Upside down with Jen:



Routine with the Dizzy Divas:



Second lyra class (falling backwards like a champ now):



And last night's chopper with Janet:



Thank you to everyone who is being patient while I slowly navigate the upside down world!  I know I play around a lot but I really am enjoying the process. 



Thank you for the birthday love, Twirlies!!!