Browsing Category:

30 by 30

A Quiet Weekend.

Posted in 30 by 30 by


new photo joyfully

I was able to use this free weekend to hunker down and get creative. Took pictures, watched a new musical, wrote blog posts, thought about ideas, checked out Pinterest and other bloggers that I enjoy.  It helped a lot.

Goals for the week?  Getting stronger physically (two more weeks of physical therapy), being productive, and making sure this year is on track to be better than the last.

Were you able to recharge this weekend? What’s on your to-do list this week?


April 25, 2016

30 By 30: Rise And Grind With A Smile!

Posted in 30 by 30, My Life by



I challenge you to do this!

This is my motto for right now, and possibly the whole year.  Getting stuff done with joy! Stepping out to get the job done consistently. But smiling and feeling good while doing that.

I’ve got a lot I want to accomplish this coming month, but that’s on top of my regular work and life commitments.  One of my teaching jobs is done for the year and I have a week off from my nanny gig (Spring Break).  My plan is to maximize my free time – with work and leisure.   It’s not always easy to stay enthusiastic when projects are happening left and right. Or maybe certain situations arise and it does not always look like you’re going to finish.

Quitting could be a possibility. But that’s not what we want. Trust me, I’ve been there.  But there’s hope.  Nothing like that satisfaction when you pass that test or finish everything on your to-do list with time to spare. Also, it feels so much better when you’re not always grumpy. Knowing there’s a light at the end of the tunnel and believing that is quite refreshing!

Write the vision down.  What are you looking forward to this season? Progress in something? It could be physical, mental, emotional… work-related. Connected with friends or family.  Doesn’t matter. If you really want to reach that goal, you can do it.  Let’s make this thing (insert whatever you want) happen.   Let’s do this!  I’m behind you all the way. 🙂

How do you reward yourself when you get that pesky item off your to-do list? A favorite snack? Extra time relaxing? Maybe hanging out with friends? There are so many different ways to pat yourself on the back for a job well done  Let me know!

BTW: The Typorama app is so cute! That’s how I made this graphic and I thoroughly enjoy it.  It’s free, but it costs $4 to get all of the features (fonts, editing tools, no watermark!). I decided to do that so I can make more things.

Have a great Easter weekend. And if you don’t celebrate, happy regular weekend!


March 25, 2016

30 By 30: My Knee.

Posted in 30 by 30, My Life by

This is probably common knowledge to you. Or maybe not.

My knee is a bit of a mess.

It’s been that way for a long time. After a dance injury, I’ve been dealing with pain and inflammation in my knee for over 17 years. The symptoms would come and go, depending on the weather and my work load, but there was always some kind of discomfort. My youngest brother calls me “Old Lady Melanie”.  I tell my students I sound like Rice Krispies (crepitus) whenever I plié or bend. You can tell when I’m coming by the creaks and pops.

Timing and other situations discouraged me from getting it checked out.  I kept on teaching and performing; I had to. My livelihood is based around me moving around. But it put a damper on everything. Being in constant pain made me rethink if I wanted to continue dancing or could continue.  After a lot of thinking and prayer and discussing with folks close to me, I realized it was time. In the last month, I’ve been on a fast track to finding solutions. One MRI and a visit to an orthopedic surgeon, I found out what’s wrong.

Here’s what happened: I dislocated my kneecap when I was 12 (the initial injury), and on top of that, the cartilage has thinned a bit. A lot of medical terms are involved.  So with those ingredients = not-so-happy Melanie.

I won’t lie, I was concerned. Concerned that I wouldn’t be able to keep the career I have. There was a lot of fear behind my thinking. Not good, but it happened. But I’ve been staying positive and focused on what I need to do.

So thankful that my doctor specializes in Sports Medicine – perfect! We talked about options on the healing process. Now, I’m wearing a new brace (my sister thinks it looks like an action figure mask), started physical therapy again, and doing more to give my knee the boost it needs throughout the day.

It’s not easy. I get frustrated. I want to get better but there are some hurdles.  But I’m feeling more confident in my work. I can go the extra mile during those long teaching days. But still, making sure I take care of myself when I’m at home or on the weekends.

Good news: Right now, I don’t need surgery (thank God)! That was my ultimate hope.

This was one of my goals for this year – to make moves in regards to my health. And thankfully, I am!


March 14, 2016

30 BY 30: Do!

Posted in 30 by 30, My Life by

Right before the new year, participants in an online group that I’m in, challenged themselves to find a word or phrase that would shape or guide their 2016.  It took me a few days to find the “perfect” word.

So, with that in mind…


That’s right. DO. An active kind of word. A right now kind of word.

This is what I wrote on the forum:

Accomplishing what I want to do with love, joy, and excellence! Including goals I set for myself and making sure the friendships and connections I have are successful. Just getting stuff done. 

A Bible Scripture that motivates me is from Habukkuk 2:2 – “Write the vision, make it plain!”

This is how I can start – writing thoughts down, making reasonable to-do lists, willing myself to make it happen.  It helps to see visuals to push me along on my journey. Like right here; this post is a reminder that I can do what I want to do.


  • I’m drinking more water.  I bought a big, blue container from Five Below and I fill it up!
  • Speaking up and voicing my opinions, whether or not they are popular.
  • Trying new things – makeup, travel routes, food, exercises, etc.
  • Also, here is a big deal – I’m getting my knee checked out again (very old dance injury) and finding out what I can do to make it better. If that means surgery, okay, but hopefully not!

So that’s my “word” for 2016.  Not just thinking and wishing things would change.  But just going for it. Taking small steps, that elevate to huge leaps.


January 25, 2016

30 BY 30: How To Disconnect

Posted in 30 by 30, My Life by

Work takes a lot out of me. As the weeks have gone by, more has happened, and I don’t get the luxury to just take time off. Minus the Nashville trip, it’s been non-stop since September.

I never want to burn out; unfortunately, I let all of my commitments get the best of me. Especially as we approach Christmas… So, I have to think of practical ways to ease it on down.

Here’s what I’ve been doing to disconnect from the stress and busy times (Also a reminder for myself): Read more…

December 17, 2015