Sunday, May 11, 2014

Hello There! Ballroom, Busy-ness and career changes.....

It's been so long since I've posted, it is likely that my blog has been long forgotten.  
Here I am though, updating you on the many changes that have taken place since my last blog.  
I cannot promise that I will have the time to blog regularly at this time, but I don't want to completely abandon my blog.  It has always been a fun outlet for me and a nice place to keep in touch with all of the friends I've made in blogland.
I miss all of you and I've kept up with the blog reading, just not posting.
One issue that I have with posting is a lack of time.  Last year, I spent most of my summer out of town training for a job that I have since left.  Perhaps some time in the future I will post about that; talk about how disappointed and disillusioned (and often, disgusted) I was with the field of child welfare.  
I'm finishing my Master's thesis, currently waiting for an independent review board to grant the blessing to begin sending out surveys for my study.  It has been a marathon; I expected to be finished with that now.  I have completed all of my Master's classes for my degree in Child and Family Studies and once the thesis is done I suppose I will be a "Master".  I have four more classes to complete my Addiction's Counselor certification.  I have come to love the process of learning how to facilitate group counseling sessions and really want to pursue that avenue of work when I'm done.
After I left my job with DCS (Department of Child Services) I went to work immediately with a service provider.  I work with DCS and Probation clients, providing home-based services.  I'm an independent contractor and I only take one or two cases at a time.  It is a very part time job.  I also work part time (but a permanent, non-contract job) as a Client Advisor in a Domestic Violence shelter.  I love it.  It's still pretty new, so I will have to see what it can lead to, but I truly enjoy this work.
I've been busy!
Another reason that I haven't been blogging is because my USB ports don't work!  I can't upload any pictures that I have taken with my camera.  I can still upload pictures that people send me.

Like this one!
This is a photograph taken at the Indiana Challenge Ballroom competition in February.  Of course, I always find time to compete.  This is during the International Standard comp.  Unfortunately, I didn't place in the top 3 in the scholarship (I was number 4) which means I didn't win any money or meet my personal standards and goals.  It was a huge category and I did make the finals, so I am grateful for that, but I need to up my game.
I did place 3rd in the Silver American Smooth Scholarship!  This came as a huge surprise as American Smooth silver is still pretty new to me.  I've always been a standard girl, but my coach has urged me to compete in Smooth.  He told me that I will be a better Smooth dancer than Standard.  I usually place well in Standard, but so far Smooth has been even better.  I am hooked now....I'm beginning to love the freedom of expression and lyricism that is characteristic of Smooth.  
I don't have a picture of the Smooth comp yet.
I am very fortunate that my husband has really come to understand my passion for dance (maybe because he takes his opportunity to pursue his passion of golf!).  At the IC comp, he purchased me a new competition gown!

If you follow the link to my Pinterest page, you can see my new dress.  It's the black and electric blue dress toward the bottom of the board.  The picture doesn't do it justice, but in's vibrant and gorgeous, sparkly and to has an Art Deco feel to it.  On this board, I've pinned some other pictures of me dancing.  They are past and present and represent different stages of my dance development.
I've grown a lot as a dancer in the past couple of years and now I'm beginning to see the fruits of my labor.  I will be competing in Chicago in September and October and I'm really looking forward to it.
I've given up showcases to devote more time to competitive dancing.

Well, my friends, I hope to blog a little more often.
I hope you are all well....I MISS YOU!