Month: December 2016

Around the World in Books

37 books set in different countries - 5-7 for each continent #infographic:


Conquering Fears with Dreams

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I’ve never been a very brave person. That probably would come as a surprise to a lot of people who know me. I have grown up performing on stage with few to no nerves.

Yet, when when I think back to my childhood, to my time in high school and college, and now out of college, one of the defining attributes I see in my person is fear.

When I was a child if you were to ask me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I might have said a teacher, or nothing at all. But I would never say a dancer or a writer – and the reason I didn’t say this was because I was scared. Those were dreams that were too frightening to achieve.

When my mom asked me why I didn’t want to do Modern Dance, I told her it was because I liked ballet better and didn’t like the style, but the real reason was that I was too scared to try a new style, afraid I would look foolish.

When I had to change schools I was too scared to go to the local high school, so I chose to do a cyber school instead. In college I hid away most of my freshman year because I was afraid of making friends. Even now, I sometimes avoid challenging myself merely because I am too afraid.

Except now I try harder to overcome my fears.

And how did I come to this point?

It was a process, as anything in life is, but it came to me in three steps.


‘Tis the Season of The Nutcracker

Every dancer knows that November through January is Nutcracker season. Dancers all over the world, from those who dance for a hobby to those who dance professionally, prepare to perform this beloved ballet.

The ballet is accessible, the music delightful, and the story enjoyable to watch, making it the most well-known ballet (which is quite funny considering it’s initial failure). It’s music is widely used in commercials and movies, so even if you’ve never seen the ballet you have certainly heard the music.

That’s why I thought it would be fun to make a winter reading list based off of major scenes from the Nutcracker (primarily from the second act – because let’s be honest, that’s the fun one!). With the days getting shorter and shorter and colder and colder, it is the prime time to get your reading done! So many of the texts I’ve included are classics that you always put off – not this year! I’ve also included classic Christmas texts that are fun to re-read and a few fun contemporary novels.

So without farther ado, let the curtain be raised on….