My Year of Leap

My Year of Leap

When it was almost 2018 and I looked at what I wanted to achieve in the coming year, I knew I needed my word for the year to be “leap.”

I’m sure it would have made more sense to do it on a leap year, but I’m not willing to wait that long. I was ready to tackle it this year!

What does it mean?

It’s my year to stop being so fearful and cautious. To do things that pushed me out my comfort zone.

The first opportunity came early in January: the offer to run the front desk at the brand-new dance studio. YES!

Several other opportunities have shown up as the year has progressed. Some have been things I’ve initiated (like running a small group for 6 weeks), and others I’ve been ready for when people suggested them (like surfing. Once you’ve picked your jaw up off the floor, you can read all about my story here.)

Some are one-time opportunities, like the surfing (because as good as it felt to try it, it’s NOT my cup of tea. I still don’t like water!). Others are things I’m joining and continuing, like taking a musical theater class at the dance studio. Not only am I getting gradually more comfortable singing and acting in front of the class, but I’m pushing myself to tackle emotions I don’t usually experience (currently humor and anger!) Plus trying (and loving) yoga, and yesterday was my first stretching/conditioning class. Oh, and I’m going to attempt hip-hop with a bunch of 9- to 12-year-olds. No, you can’t see video ;) I’m a ballet dancer so this could be really awkward. No, I pretty much guarantee it!

I’m doing smaller things, too. Writing little notes to people, just out of the blue, to thank them for their friendship. Things that are still putting myself out there, but aren’t quite as earth-shattering as surfing. 

I’ve still got 3 1/2 months of the year to see what else I’ll tackle.

And you know what? I don’t foresee stopping this once it’s 2019. I don’t think my 2017 me would even recognize the me I am now, and I like that!

The Bathroom: FINISHED!

The Bathroom: FINISHED!

The bathroom is FINISHED! It’s been a long process, and we’ve learned a ridiculous amount out of the process. I’m thankful that it’s done, and that it looks even more beautiful than I could have imagined. Knowing we’re not breathing in mold (or risking the walls collapsing at some point) is a huge relief, and now we have an absolutely gorgeous bathroom to enjoy! (the shower enclosure isn’t on yet. I just didn’t want to keep waiting on the pictures!)

A lot of what we bought for the bathroom was pretty basic: subway tiles (with pewter grout), beadboard and trim…

but some of our choices took a lot of shopping to find, so if you’re interested in any of these items, here’s where we found them. (can’t guarantee the links will stay active forever but c’est la vie!)

The blinds were from

Ride The Wave sign is from Target

Vanities are from Home Depot

The lights are from Lowe’s

The faucets, shower handle, and tub faucet are from Amazon.

The tile is Williamsburg Beige ceramic tiles from Floor & Decor.

The paint colors: Recycled Glass and Restful

Finish Strong

Finish Strong

For families with kids in recitals, it’s easy to be motivated to show up at classes the last weeks before the performance. We know just how important those final sessions are to feel totally comfortable in the dances.

But for people like us, who go to studios who aren’t having a recital, it’s easy to start skipping classes (or dropping them altogether).

I get it. Field trips…testing…it makes it really tempting to make dance a “voluntary” part of our schedule.

I’m sure you can guess that my priority is to keep showing up for class as long as there is one to go to. But what makes me feel that way?

  1. The biggest thing to me is that summer is already long. They’re going to have at least two months without classes, or with just a week or two of dance. That’s a LOT of ground to lose. Remember all the time they spent working on their splits? Without the reminder of a weekly class, it’s easier and easier to skip that stretching time. And it takes awhile to get it back in the fall.
  2. You’re paying for it already. Even if you actually drop class the last month, you’ve still bought their dance clothes…which aren’t too likely to fit in the fall. The teachers need to show up if there are any students, but it can be discouraging to see your class dwindle to smaller and smaller numbers.
  3. It’s good for the kids to see you follow through. If they see that you make it a priority to keep going to the end, it will teach them to do the same. In high school, my high school band director taught us this very thing: he called it “the last 19 seconds,” based on wrestling stories from his time in high school, and it stuck with me. I’m going to finish strong, and I want my children to do the same.

Please don’t feel like I’m trying to guilt you into anything. But if you’re on the fence about those last couple classes, may this inspire you to push through and get your kids those final couple hours in the studio!

Starting week seven

Starting week seven

Today starts the seventh week of our bathroom project. And that doesn’t count all the preliminary work of finding someone and choosing everything we’d put in there.

It’s the seventh week of:

  • sharing one bathroom for the 5 of us all day
  • Josh working in the living room instead of our bedroom
  • not being able to get to things in the garage
  • (having our dress clothes hanging in a closet in the garage)
  • having a “stranger” in and out of our house every day
  • lovely sounds throughout the day (jackhammers are LOUD when they’re within your walls!)



I know it should be done soon. When he finishes the grout (today) and the beadboard on the walls, everything else should go in place really quickly. Nothing has been simple. Either we bought the wrong grout, or the vanity we chose has drawers that will hit where the pipes are, or it just takes longer than expected to cut up the millions of subway tiles.

I’m so ready to see it finished! I can’t wait to have my house back!

Bathroom: update 2

Bathroom: update 2

Project day 29 (counting weekends because that’s how long we’ve been looking at plastic sheeting instead of a bathroom).

He finished tiling and grouting (? is that a word?) the shower. It was a bigger project than any of us anticipated: subway tiles are TINY so there was a LOT of cutting involved. He figures it set him back 1 to 1 1/2 weeks. Goody.

But it’s perfect. I’m absolutely thrilled with how it looks. He’s doing an incredible job and I’m thankful that he’s meticulous!

Next up: the floor to the rest of the bathroom. I can’t WAIT to see that come together!

And after that, things should move really quickly. Which means we’ll get our garage back as well as getting our bathroom back!