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My Life

    My Life

    Sunrise, Sunrise


    Have you noticed how beautiful a sunrise is?

    It’s a simple thing. Not too bold and in your face, but still just enough to not be invisible.

    Depending on the week, my alarm goes off at 5:30am, and I’m on the road to work by 6:10am.   Some days it’s crazy cold and I “rush” to the car, getting it and myself warm.  Now,  it’s a bit balmy and it’s more like a stroll.  Stoplights and traffic may accelerate or stall the commute.

    But lately, I’ve been noticing the sky.  One of the rare perks of Daylight Savings Time is the earlier sunrise. Gets the day going earlier and longer, which we can all be happy about.

    When I walk out of the house, the sky is mirroring itself from twelve hours earlier, a midnight blue, with a few stars. But in a matter of minutes, lighter blues, with pinks, lavenders, and some oranges peek through.  It amazes me how quickly the sky changes from one spectrum to the other.

    The picture above was too gorgeous to not capture.  No filters this time around. This is the sky in its’ pure form at 7am.  So perfect in my mind.

    I’m thankful that I’m able take a beat, a few moments to look and appreciate.  The calm before the storm, if you will.

    And hooray for spring!  My favorite season.



    30 by 30, My Life

    30 By 30: My Knee.

    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!


    My Life

    Not Giving Up.


    One of my favorite Scriptures. Probably my favorite.

    Just a reminder that it’s okay to keep doing what I’m doing – my work, being kind to others, giving, stay persistent with everyday life, pursuing my goals and dreams. Trust me, it’s not easy. When is it?

    Even though it’s not my main focus, all of the work and good I give will come right on back! It may take some time, may not come right away, but it’s going to happen. 🙂

    How do you stay focused? What quotes help you stay on the right path, even when you have down days? Let me know!


    30 by 30, My Life

    30 BY 30: Do!

    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.


    My Life


    Where I am, it’s supposed to snow.

    A lot.  Like, over 2 feet.  In our area, snow is such a big deal, everyone goes HAM on buying all of the things.

    I’m not a fan of it, or the bitter cold. Right now it’s really affecting my knee (old injury) so everything is a little achy. Not fun! So, I’ll be right here inside the house. Brightside – I’m not working until Tuesday (no school) and I’ll do my best to rest and be productive.

    Look at my basic lunch from the other day.

    Look at my basic lunch from the other day.

    I finally started reading Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover (Thank you, Rain!). Hopefully, I’ll finish it over the weekend.

    What are you reading right now?

    What do you like to do on snow days?