Sunday, July 1, 2018

Three Competitions, some Downtime, and a Game Plan

Hello there,

It's 1:37 AM which should tell you that I am on summer vacation! June was crazy but I got through it and it feels so weird to be home and not running to dance after working or waking up on Saturday to teach. I am at Big Y more but it's only a few days a week. I've been mostly doing relaxing, non dance related things like video games, writing (finally), and knitting, but I've got a few other things cooking. Let me catch you up on the end of my competitive season. I'm taking a much needed hiatus until August.

May 20th: Putnam County/The Birthday Feis

So I feel like I'm learning as I go along this journey. One of my newest lessons: Don't feis the day after your studio's dance recital. The show was great! I had to dance with one of the classes I taught because a parent decided to be super rude and not show up to the recital with her daughter for disgruntled reasons, but I had a feeling this was going to be the case so I was prepared. My baby class were super stars and all the numbers I was in went well. However, it was a long day and I was shot when it was all over. So...I'm attributing that for a mediocre day at the feis. Coincidentally, it was also on my 29th (*SOBS*) birthday so I think I was hoping for spectacular results...I ended up not placing, like not even my usual almost there experience...but oh well, lesson learned.
I looked fabulous though!

June 3rd: The Hartford Feis

Learned lesson #2: Don't compete the day after your drama club has their performance. At my job, I am contractually obligated to head an after school activity. I did drama club and my kids did Annie. They did a wonderful job, but I also stood behind the curtain for almost two hours in shitty shoes, just like the last feis, my feet were toast. The Hartford Feis is relatively local for me (I think 40 minutes) and almost all of us dance there. I didn't go last year and the year before it poured so I was excited. All my students that went out got second in something which was amazing! Me on the other hand...I did not place again. This feis is old school and they make you pay for marks the day so I don't know how close I was. I was feeling a little down. I feel like I always try to be happy for everyone else's successes and would like the karma to come back my way, but still thought I danced well despite not getting anything. I also got a ridiculous sun burn (I get one annually) and a tee shirt.

June 10th: United Irish Counties

By this point in June I was burnt out. I didn't want to go to work. I didn't want to go to dance class. I just wanted to lay on the couch and sleep on my husband. Still, I had paid for this feis so I went. I didn't want to get up early so I wore my bun wig and just tried to be as relaxed as possible. All my dances were in the same room so I was able to sit on my zucca in between dances so my feet weren't sore and I thought that everything went really well. I also danced with someone much older than me in grades and that was super exciting! Keep dropping down everyone! It's great! Any who, I got a third in treble jig and got 4th in everything else so I was super happy with the progress. I would have had third in hornpipe but there was a boy in that comp (He is a very nice adorable boy, so I can't be mad at him). I decided that I was going to take a break from competing to relax and rejuvenate.

So here's what I've been up to since then:

I had two private lessons in addition the the final classes of the school year. I recently changed something in my dancing that I really hope will set me apart now. I often get comments about being up off my heels while dancing hard shoe and I just thought it was physically impossible for me to do it like my TC was asking...well, I never really tried it and when she made me do it it was clearer, I hit more of my small clicks and over all everything just sounds and looks nicer. I didn't really practice this week (again, I'm saying this was my rest week) but I'm looking forward to working on it. I've also been making sure that my clicks don't get wonky, I do something weird when I land sometimes. As for soft shoe, I keep working on crossing, especially on my hop backs and I made some really cool progress on my turns in slip jig. 

Outside of dance I'm about a week into what I guess I would call my conditioning for the summer. I've taken the plunge and started P90x3. I've been watching my husband do it for months now and I feel like my crazy life has made the fitness aspect of dance difficult. I do okay, but I'm sure trying to hold up my heavy body is not easy. I'm hoping it will make me leaner and help with my stamina though I still plan on going to the gym to run once rest week is over haha. So far it's not as awful as I thought though my push ups are pretty weak. Lots of lunges and squats, I feel it when I walk haha.

Now for the game plan for the end of summer/fall:

I help teach two weeks of dance camp at the end of July (not counting the mini workshop I'm teaching for a mainstream studio on July 18th) I have a week of camp where I'm actually a student mid August and I'm hoping to be a bit fitter and learner by then. I will still be working on all four dances, but alternating days. I have third steps to learn! I also have three competitions on the books (though not paid for yet,) starting August 4th. Finally, still not sure what's happening for Oireachtas 2018. I don't want to put unneeded pressure on myself and I rather focus on getting into prelim than learn another trad set that I would only need for a few months (I mean someday when I take grade exams and then the TCRG exam). If I get my firsts I guess I can revisit this...but I think it's really the best decision. Please remind me of this in a few months lol.

All in all, things are going well and I really hope that I'll be having fantastic results in the coming months.




  1. My! What a journey it has been! During morning downtime at work I've been filling my time with reading your irish dance posts, I went all the way back to your first in 2014! You've come so far and all the work and sacrifices you've made, I'm just like #relateable! Thank you for posting your journey!! I hope you continue to give us updates! These posts have been marked into my daily routine. (Alongside my morning Game of Thrones theory videos ��) I also would like to mention that I'm having my very first privavte lesson this thursday!! I'm SO unbelievably excited! I hope to post about it soon!!

    1. Hey!

      I hope your private lesson was awesome! I enjoy them because I feel so relaxed while dancing for my TC!