Monday, 21 April 2014

Just saying…

I love it when I hear how uplifting, fun and inspiring dancing can be for people from all
walks of life.  For me, dance frees the spirit and takes me to a whole new level beyond words.

Whilst writing a recent article, I searched for inspiring dance quotes to support my ideas.  I was surprised at what I found and thought I’d share a select few of the delights from the vast amount of quotes around.  Granted, dance is not everyone’s cup of tea, but these quotes really made me think about how far I have come with my own dancing, where I want to be and the path I intend to follow in order to get there.  Enjoy!
  • “Dance. Smile. Giggle. Marvel. TRUST. HOPE. LOVE. WISH. BELIEVE. Most of all, enjoy every moment of the journey and appreciate where you are at this moment instead of always focussing on how far you have to go.” Mandy Hale
  • “Dance is the hidden language of the soul.” - Martha Graham
  • “By letting go, you get everything. The real winner is the one who lets go.” - Lao Tzu
  • “The only thing we have to fear is of fear itself.” - Franklin D. Roosevelt
  • “The body is a sacred garment and the spine is the tree of life. Respect it!” - Martha Graham
  • “Dance is spirit and energy. Our inner personalities always show while we dance. Be yourself, be free, enjoy what you do and share with pride.” - Nawarra Dancer
  • “The body says what words cannot.” - Martha Graham
  • “Opportunity dances with those who are ready for the dance floor.” - Jackson Browne
  • “Dance like there’s nobody watching, love like you’ll never be hurt, sing like there’s nobody listening. And live like it’s heaven on earth.” - William W. Purkey
  • “Dance, when you’re broken open. Dance when you’ve torn the bandage off. Dance in the middle of fighting. Dance in your blood. Dance when you’re perfectly free.” - Rumi 
  • “Nobody cares if you can’t dance. Great dancers are great because of their passion.” - Martha Graham 
  • “Life is the dancer and you are the dance.” - Eckhart Tolle 
  • “To be creative means to be in love with life. You can only be creative if you love life enough that you want to enhance its beauty, you want to bring a little more music to it, a little more poetry to it, a little more dance to it.” – Osho

Now putting the spotlight on you... From dancing, writing and painting, to hiking, sewing, and baking; GO FORTH, do what ignites your spirit and makes you come alive.  You never know, there may just be a group of others who feel just like you about your passion, and end up quoting about it to inspire people for lifetimes to come. It may even be you!

Shimmy ON!


Sunday, 20 April 2014

Happy Easter!

This photo is of the Easter display in my classroom.  It was the last day of term before the Easter holidays - a great day with a party vibe in the air.  The kids decorated the area with bunny masks then went on to make greeting cards, paper chicks and baskets, which we filled with yummy treats.  The golden chocolate bunnies are courtesy of yours truly (I couldn't resist). 

Today is Easter Sunday, a time when we commemorate the rebirth of Christ and the freshness of springtime.  Seeing how far the children in my class have come since the start of term, this image above brings to me good memories of creativity, determination, team work, transformation and fun fun fun times.   

Happy Easter everybody - have a great day!


Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Spring into Shimmy!

It's been a lovely sunny day in London town and Spring has officially sprung.  I find this time of year not only refreshing, but a great time for reflections and creating new beginnings; the two sub-headers of this post.

1. Reflections...
Its been a busy but lovely few weeks at my primary school and one of the highlights was arranging for a group of children to attend a dance festival for kids with special needs.  It was one of the most heart warming experiences I've felt and I was SO proud to see the children take centre stage, face their fears and bring their dance moves alive in front of a supportive crowd. The power of what dancing can do for a young person's confidence and self-esteem, goes without saying!  The children had no expectations, simply went with the flow, as they danced to Pharell Williams's "Happy" and despite their initial apprehension, trusted that everything would be okay.  Well it was better an okay in the end, they were AMAZING, as were all the kids from the other special schools at the festival. 

The whole experience of the children's dance festival got me thinking about how dance uplifts my own sense of self and enhances my well-being.  Last weekend at Shimmy by the Sea (SBTS), certainly put a spring into my inner dance diva.  SBTS is a bellydance weekender with dance workshops from experienced professional dancers, a hafla (aka Arabic party and showcase) and a SOUK to buy sparkly Egyptian costumes and bits in. For me, SBTS was a weekend full cheeky laughs, pushing myself to experience new things, creating dance memories with old and new friends, and lapping up some beautiful sea breeze and scenery. My first experience of SBTS was a lovely way to physically unwind, learn from others and DANCE just like the kids at the dance festival.  

2. Creating new beginnings...
Well the sun is out and change is coming.  Rather than blindly rushing ahead and creating new beginnings for the sake of it, I've chosen to purposely digest what I have learnt from all of my amazing teachers, students and inspirations so far, including all the lovely hafla dance performances I get to see.  This time round though, I plan to continue simply enjoying and feeling the beauty and sensuality of bellydance; but with a new perspective: if something is out of my comfort zone, face the fear and go with the flow until it becomes automatic! Pushing the dance boundaries (well for me anyway!) this season, I will pursue a Bellydance Performer's Course and workshops with live Arabic musicians - exciting stuff!  It will be a balancing act with the day job, but as dance is what feeds my soul, its SO worth putting in the extra effort for.

Enjoy the sunnier climes and keep dancing!

Shimmy ON!