Thursday, June 15, 2017

NOW IS THE TIME TO START BELLY DANCING!

IT ALL STARTS THIS JUNE!

New Thursday Session starts June 22nd
New Saturday Session starts June 24th

What do I do if I'm interested?
First, you need to decide if you want to just "check it out" or commit to 4, 6, or 10 classes.

If you want to check it out, come to any Thursday class at 7pm, Drop ins are $20

If you want to try 4, 6, or 10 classes- you purchase a class card and this card NEVER expires. You can use it for ANY class (offered by Karla Marie)




How do I pay?
You can pay for your class card online before you arrive in class
OR you can pay with cash or check when you come to your first class

How do I confirm registration?
You email bellydanceneworleans@gmail.com

What do I wear?
Anything that allows a full range of motion. Stretch pants and a fitted shirt/tank works great.

When can I start?
Register now! Start June 22 or June 24th

What if I want to perform just for fun?
In June and July, we will be learning two routines that will be performed in a flash mob in August. No costume required.

Join our Belly Dance Goddess Hour Group for class updates and reminders!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Interested in belly dancing in a Flash Mob?



  • Total of 10 classes will get you there lookin' fabulous!
  • 10 classes $100* (Class Card NEVER Expires and Can be Shared)
  • 5 Classes required to join the flash mob (one choreography minimum)
  • You can choose 1, 2, or all 3 choreographies being performed.
  • PARTICIPATION in the Shimmy Shakti Mob is NOT required. You can still join the fun and skip the mob 
Learn the three choreographies in June & July- we perform in August! You can choose to perform one, two, or all three!
  • Latin Fusion (Despacito) 
  • Tribal Fusion (Kaman/Kemuri) 
  • Belly Dance Fusion (OjosAsi)

TO REGISTER

A confirmation email will be sent to your email address with details! 
A video with the choreographies will be shared with the Shimmy Shakti Mob Group.
* Current Students can use their existing class card, please email to register for total number of participants. Make sure you have enough punches available to cover classes you plan to attend.




SCHEDULE IS BELOW:

Technique & Choreography Combo Breakdown Classes (open to all students):
JUNE
  • Thursday, June 22 (7pm-8pm) NOLA Spaces
  • Saturday, June 24 (10:30am-11:30am) NOLA Spaces
JULY
  • Thursday, July 20 (7pm-8pm) NOLA Spaces
  • Saturday, July 22 (10:30am-11:30am) NOLA Spaces
  • Thursday, July 27 (7pm-8pm) NOLA Spaces
  • Saturday, July 29 (10:30am-11:30am) NOLA Spaces
Shimmy Shakti Mob Classes (Open to Troupe & Flash Mob students):

JULY
  • Tuesday, July 18 (City Park) 6pm-7:30pm
  • Tuesday, July 25 (City Park) 6pm-7:30pm
AUGUST
  • Tuesday, August 1 (City Park) 6pm-7:30pm
  • Thursday, August 3 (NOLA Spaces) 7pm-8pm
Final Class (Open to Troupe & Flash Mob students):
  • Saturday, August 5 (NOLA Spaces) 10:30am-11:30am

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Bayou Belly is coming y'all..... and so am I!!!

Perhaps you've heard of me, been my student, maybe we know each other, or maybe you haven't even noticed the listing or know who I am. For this reason, I wanted to share a little more about my workshop, offering, and me!

This July, I have been honored as one of the featured instructors and performers at Bayou Belly Festivale in Lafayette. I am grateful for this opportunity to share a little bit about me and my dance and I want to tell you more about this workshop I have been working on, just for you....



WHY ANAHATA?


This workshop was designed as a starting point for re-connection. The heart chakra is one of those most misunderstood energy centers. Heart doesn't necessarily relate to love or romance or positive thinking. The heart chakra bares all and feels all. In my opinion, the heart chakra is about connection, about breath, about the pause. It can sometimes be “feel good stuff”, most of the time it lends itself to confusion, and sometimes “not-so-good feeling stuff” as well as loss.


  • We will acknowledge our brokenness, our darkness, our struggle, and our fears so we can explore a new approach and learn techniques and practices that allow us to acknowledge those spaces and moments, release them, and use the power of this connection so we can truly express what the soul longs to share through our dance.


  • Most of our deepest connections come from times of despair or times of great joy. This polarity provides an opportunity to connect and exist in the breath and pause in between. With the ability to tap into those spaces (as observers) without absorbing the energies from those moments and people, we are able to connect more fully and grow.


What does that mean for the class structure?


  • We will begin with a brief discussion about the heart chakra and discuss practices and techniques to assess your energy centers to create openness and balance. Then, we will share in a short meditation and visualization exercise. We will spend the rest of our class using belly dance technique and oriental dance as a tool- using combinations and formations that encourage connection and learning about our body as a communicator.



Who would enjoy this workshop?



Here is one reflection.... If this is something that speaks to you, I think you would enjoy it:

Like me, many of you dance, teach, and/or perform. Many have several gigs/jobs, responsibilities, and relationships to manage in your daily life. How can we step out of duties and routines, challenges and struggles, the business side of this art form and effectively hop into a true soul space that is necessary for dancing with connection… dancing through our heart chakra?


How can we feel connected and expressive in a way that speaks to our heart, and when performing, to our audience? How can we peacefully move away from the burnout that comes from giving more and more and instead peacefully and more deeply connecting to our spirit so we are able to share rather than give of ourselves? How can we truly express, speak up, and be heard when we dance?


Who am i?
  • So… I have been belly dancing for 12 years and have been teaching for 9. I have only been performing (quite infrequently) for the last six years. I have led a troupe of my students for a short amount of time… approximately 5 years. What could I possibly teach you or be thinking in offering a workshop at Bayou Belly Festivale to a group of incredible dancers and amazing beings?


It’s simple to me, because when it comes to your heart chakra, it’s not about the ego, it’s about vulnerability and offering. My personal life experience (in adulthood, starting at age 19 with my first child) propelled me into a whirlwind that shook me, tore me down, ripped me apart. In retrospect, perhaps it was just what this stubborn soul of mine needed to see things from a different perspective (that, along with some past Karma I had to work out, I’m sure). I learned to connect and invite light/peace into my being. In this process.... I discovered belly dance, yoga, meditation, Reiki, visualization.... Becoming a devoted student of all those practices. All the while, succeeding at a Communications and Business Development career, running three businesses as an entrepreneur, raising three boys (now 21, 14, and 5), and taking up a full time “hobby” of belly dance training all around the nation.



The combination of all of these elements and the struggles of everyday life, work, and parenting (first, as an unhappily married woman for the first 10 years of my adult life, then a single parent for the following 5 years, and now a blissfully partnered being for the past 7 years) have made me one fierce, take no shit, kinda dancer and individual.


No matter what happens in life, when I hit that stage, it's about me, it's about what I have to say, it's about what I am fighting for, and it's about being heard. And THIS, makes it about the audience- the vulnerability that comes from baring all allows the most powerful connection and THAT is what I want to share with you.



I am honored with the opportunity to guide others in that connection to their own spirit through the abilities of our Heart Chakra and the practices available to all of us. Yes, we can use it in dance… but more important, we can use it in life!



So.... if you're not bored yet, I hope you will join me. Sunday, July 16th at 9am


In ANAHATA: DANCING WITH YOUR HEART CHAKRA, I will teach you techniques and practices that will allow you to effectively balance and open your heart chakra for powerful and peaceful connection in your dance. (Bayou Belly Festivale- Lafayette, LA)



Not to mention I have a VERY, VERY special gift for all attendees and I can't wait!!!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Class Schedule

Plan your belly dancing schedule, May through August

Remember you can join our Facebook Group for class updates and other info.



Shimmy Shakti Troupe Performances:
  • June 16- Snake Oil Festival (Howling Wolf- Time TBD)
  • July 14-16 Bayou Belly Festivale- Lafayette
  • August 5- Flash Mob
TROUPE-ONLY Classes:
  • May 20 (Snake Oil Festival/BayouBelly) 10:30am
  • June 15 (Snake Oil Festival/BayouBelly) 7pm
  • June 22- Troupe-Only Class (Flash Mob/BayouBelly) 7pm
  • June 24- Troupe-Only Class (Flash Mob/BayouBelly) 10:30am
  • August 3- Troupe-Only Class (Flash Mob) 7pm
  • August 5- Troupe-Only Class (Flash Mob) 10:30am
  • New Season starts AUGUST 10th
Please note: Rehearsal date for each performance has not been included
THURSDAY 7PM
Basic Elements of Belly Dance
Class Cards or Drop ins 
Choreography: Tribal Fusion (May 18-July 20)
  • 5/18
  • 5/25
  • 6/1
  • 6/8
  • 7/20
AUGUST 10: NEW SEASON BEGINS 8/10- 4 Week Series)

SATURDAYS 10:30AM
Saturday Belly Dance Intensive (Open Level)
New Students Welcome- Class Card Required
Choreography: Latin Fusion (May 27-July 79)
  • 5/27
  • 6/3
  • 6/10
  • NO CLASS ON 6/17/17
  • 7/22
  • 7/29
AUGUST 12 (NEW SEASON BEGINS 8/12- 6 week Saturday Intensive 10:30am)
Raqs Sharki Focus: August-April

INTERESTED IN PERFORMING IN OUR FLASH MOB?!?!?
Here is the schedule for our Flash Mob Prep Classes
(Open to all students- New/Beginner/Advanced)

Flash Mob Prep Classes:
MAY
  • 5/18- Basic Elements Class 7pm (Great for beginners)
  • 5/25- Basic Elements Class: 7pm (Great for beginners)
  • 5/27- Saturday Intensive- Flash Mob Class: 10:30am (open to all students)
JUNE
  • 6/1- Basic Elements Class: 7pm (Great for beginners)
  • 6/3- Saturday Intensive- Flash Mob Class: 10:30am (open to all students)
  • 6/8- Basic Elements Class: 7pm (Great for beginners)
  • 6/10- Saturday Intensive- Flash Mob Class: 10:30am (open to all students)
  • 6/17- Saturday Intensive- Flash Mob Class: 10:30am (open to all students)
JULY
  • 7/20- Basic Elements Class: 7pm
  • 7/22- Saturday Intensive- Flash Mob Class: 10:30am (open to all students)
  • 7/27- Saturday Intensive- Flash Mob Class: 10:30am (open to all students)
  • 7/29- Saturday Intensive- Flash Mob Class: 10:30am (open to all students)
AUGUST
  • 8/3- Flash Mob Performers-Only 7pm
  • 8/5- Flash Mob Performers-Only 10:30am
For questions, email bellydanceneworleans@gmail.com
To purchase a class card, click here







Saturday, April 15, 2017

Reminders

Reminder:
NO CLASS TODAY
(Saturday, April 15)

- There is no class next week (Thursday or Saturday). Regular classes resume Thursday, April 27 and Saturday, April 29
- Troupe-only class for Audubon park performance will be 4/20 (Location TBD)
- Shimmy Shakti performs at Audubon Park for the CCFA Take Steps walk on Saturday, April 22. Walk starts at 10am, performance scheduled for 11am

NEXT WEEK, DONT FORGET:::
Awaken the Goddess Retreat
Sunday, April 23rd 10:00am-3:30pm
(only two spots left)
To register visit:
http://bellydanceneworleans.blogspot.com/2017/02/awaken-goddess-retreat-april-23-2017.html?m=1

For a complete schedule:
http://bellydanceneworleans.blogspot.com/p/quick-recap-calendar.html?m=1

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Belly Dance Challenge starts this Thursday!



SALUD to all my goddesses!

(Salud is the word Latinos use for "Cheers!" It means "Health" in Spanish) So, to all my goddesses dreaming about happy hour on this lovely wednesday.... Salud! I'm sharing our yummy shimmy menu for Thursday's Belly Dance Challenge Class. JOIN THE CHALLENGE!

#3weeks #4Classes #OneKickAssTime#AsRefreshingAsYourHappyHourCocktail

For more info, click here

Friday, March 31, 2017

Wild Moon Woman....

SHAKE WOMAN, SHAKE~

Over the last 9 years that I have been teaching Belly Dance, my Saturday class has been BY FAR the most popular day/time (by demand).....


Class starts at 10:30am

Arrive 5-10 minutes early to check-in

Choose 4, 6, 10, or 20 class card

You can pay via paypal by sending payment to karlamariefineart@gmail.com or cash/check when you arrive
What to wear:
Stretch pants, fitted tank or tee
No shoes- we do class barefoot
- you can borrow a shimmy scarf from me

Beginners and New Students WELCOME!!!!!

Studio Address:
NOLA Spaces- 1719 Toledano St. New Orleans, LA 70115

Upcoming Classes

Join us at NOLA Spaces- 1719 Toledano St. New Orleans, LA 70115

Regular Belly Dance Intensive classes:

  • Saturday, March 31 at 10:30am
  • Saturday, April 8 at 10:30am


Belly Dance Challenge classes:

  • (Choreography)
  • Thursday, April 6 at 7pm
  • Thursday, April 13 at 7pm
  • Thursday, April 27 at 7pm
  • Saturday, April 29 at 10:30am


Awaken the Goddess Retreat:

  • Sunday, April 23 10am-3:30pm

Friday, March 17, 2017

No Class Saturday, March 18th

Dear Lovelies:
NO Class Saturday, March 18, 2017
Please note, classes will resume as scheduled- Thursday, March 23, 2017. I will miss you lovely faces and shimmying with you (as you know I've only cancelled class twice in 9 years) but must follow the doctor's orders! We will make up for it on Thursday!
Sending you love, light, and happy shimmies!!!
Thank you for understanding, 

Karla Marie  


Monday, February 20, 2017

It's Mardi Gras!

If you live in New Orleans, you are likely just like me, unable to focus on "real work" because you are excited about the upcoming parades and Mardi Gras activities....
So just so you can have all the details ready for after Mardi Gras. Here is a quick recap of what's coming up:

  • Classes Resume March 9th (4 week and 6 week Sessions)
  • Dancing our Way Home resumes March 14th (7 week session): I am serving as facilitator for the Dancing Our Way Home program offered by Tamalyn Dallal starting with our second session TUESDAY, MARCH 14, 2017 for 7 weeks. These sessions will take place at Tamalyn's in home studio in the French Quarter. It's a beautiful space and open to any student wishing to delve into Middle Eastern Dance studies with a world renowned master instructor, choreographer, author, event producer, and all around amazing teacher.
  • Awaken the Goddess Retreat March 23rd (Sword Dancing, Energy Healing, Massage)
For a Complete Schedule, click here
For a listing and Calendar of Events, click here






Friday, February 10, 2017

#33 in the Top 100 Belly Dance Blogs

So honored to have been awarded Top 100 Belly Dance Blog by Anuj Agarwal, Founder of Feedspot.

"I would like to personally congratulate you as your blog Belly Dance New Orleans - Shimmy Soul has been selected by our panelist as one of the Top 100 Belly Dance Blogs on the web. I personally give you a high-five and want to thank you for your contribution to this world. This is the most comprehensive list of Top 100 Belly Dance Blogs on the internet and I’m honored to have you as part of this!" Anuj Agarwal, Founder of Feedspot. 


Friday, February 3, 2017

Save the Dates: March 26 & April 23

Happy Friday, Goddesses!
It's a great day for EXCITING ANNOUNCEMENTS!!!!

This spring, two sweet offerings, for some energy clearing and restoration. We have two incredible AWAKEN THE GODDESS RETREATS scheduled for you!

SAVE THE DATES: March 26 & April 23
For the Belly Dance Goddess Hour by Karla Marie Full Calendar of Events, Click here



AWAKEN THE GODDESS RETREAT
Sunday March 26

MORNING SESSION
with Gwenda
(no experience necessary, 
we have swords you can borrow)

AFTERNOON SESSION
by Karla Marie

Therapeutic Massage 
by Jessica Heno, LMT





AWAKEN THE GODDESS RETREAT
Sunday, April 23

MORNING SESSION
with Mistress Ilea Bizarre

AFTERNOON SESSION
by Karla Marie

Therapeutic Massage 
by Jessica Heno, LMT






Awaken the Goddess Retreat: April 23, 2017




Join us for a day dedicated to restoring, renewing, and awakening the goddess! This retreat's sweet offerings include "Intro to Improvisational Tribal Style" and "Restorative Energy Clearing including Therapeutic Massage"

Click here to join the Facebook Event Page

DATE:
Sunday, April 23, 2017

TIME:
10:00am-3:30pm

LOCATION:
NOLA Spaces
1719 Toledano St. 
New Orleans

REGISTRATION:
$50 Full Day (10::00am-3:30pm)
$30 Per Session (ITS, Sword, or Energy Healing)
$25 Deposit (Reserves your spot, Balance due April 16, 2017)

DEADLINE TO REGISTER
Register via PayPal OR Check by April 16, 2017

Registrants can choose a single session or the full day. 
This workshop is limited to 12 dancers. 
Registration will close once we are at full capacity.
Highly recommend early registration.

--------------------------------------------------

MORNING SESSION with Mistress Ilea Bizarre
10:00am-11:45am
Just Cue It! 
Intro to Improvisational Tribal Style dance (ITS)
With Mistress Ilea Bizarre 

There is an undeniable magic that emerges from dance improvisation. It's the ability to interpret music as movement with passion and spontaneity, combined with a nonverbal communication and deep connection to the tribe you're dancing with that makes group improvisation a powerful dynamic to add to your dance repertoire. 

This class will include concepts, basic steps, cues, and combos designed to introduce group improvisational dance and have you on your way to creating and applying your own language of movement, giving the advantage of on the spot "choreography" to suit your practice and performance needs. Open to all levels with a basic foundation of fundamental belly dance movement.

LUNCH BREAK:
11:45am-12:15pm


Sword Session with Gwenda Bourgeois
12:15pm-2:00pm
YOU DO NOT NEED TO OWN A SWORD TO ATTEND
***YOU CAN BRING YOUR OWN SWORD OR
BORROW ONE FROM OUR SWORD GODDESS INSTRUCTOR, GWENDA****
(Those interested in purchasing a sword, contact me for link)



Partner or Prop?  
Introduction to Dancing with a Sword
with Guest Instructor Gwenda
Reveal your inner warrior goddess with strong poses and controlled moves. Let the power of dancing with a sword infuse your bellydance with strength!

Balance. Grace. Harmony. Strength.
Sword technique and moves that will leave a lasting impression.
  
Increase your strength, poise, and posture while you and your shiny partner practice a series of steps, spins and combination,  level changes, poses and transitions, traveling moves, and balancing your sword on different areas of your body. 

This workshop is structured for dancers who have little or no experience of sword work, dancers who have some sword experience, but want to bring their sword to performance level, will also benefit from this workshop. 

Energy Healing Session with Karla Marie and Jessica Heno, LMT
2:00pm-3:30pm

* Bring two pillows, a yoga mat, a small throw or blanket/jacket as it tends to get cool during the healing.


*  Restorative poses | Essential Oil Therapy
*  Chakra Activation | Energy Clearing
*  Meditation & Visualization Exercises

In the Spring, it’s natural to think about what’s transpired in the beginning months and prepare to welcome positive new energy to support your intentions in the months ahead. 

I believe it is most important to bring awareness to what energy belongs to us and to allow this to flow within and be protected, while releasing all the energy that does not belong to us, releasing all those things that do not nourish us with forgiveness and compassion. 

This time will be dedicated to clearing our energy centers, the most important space in our life, to create our “ultimate sanctuary” within ourselves, activating positive intentions, opening our energy centers and sealing our energy for protection.

We will do this through the powerful healing available through dance and movement. We will start our workshop by connecting to our body and move through our energy centers, ending in a restorative therapeutic session.


TO REGISTER: 

www.paypal.com
Use the "Send Money" option
Send payment to: bellydanceneworleans@gmail.com

MAIL IN REGISTRATION:
Email bellydanceneworleans@gmail.com to complete registration and receive mailing address for check.
Join us. _/|\_ love, light, and happy shimmies

-- 
Belly Dance Goddess Hour by Karla Marie  |  Shimmy Shakti Troupe 

Join our Facebook Group and get class, event, and workshop updates

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Class this week



Basic Elements of Belly Dance
Thursday 7pm

Belly Dance Intensive
Saturday 10:30am

Join us :)

Questions? bellydanceneworleans@gmail.com

OLDIE BUT GOODIE

A POST FROM JANUARY 2015... on my way to my first out of town workshop.

Thanks to my loving husband and sweet boys who have supported my passion for belly dance. 

With a family of five there are always a myriad of plans. Some are fun activities and events, but truth be told...  most are not optional, very demanding, and important household to dos. It's easy as a mother, wife, and professional to lose oneself in the daily to dos and obligations. This leaves us with very little energy to even think of what we might spend our "free time" on. Not to mention, there is really no such thing. 

When I am home, with "nothing to do", I am already on a "to do", running a load of laundry, washing the dishes, checking homework, picking up dirty clothes and shoes from the living room, doing bills, cooking, changing diapers, finding a lost cleat or soccer ball, caring for an injury, making a grocery list, or directing traffic and mobilizing the individuals I call my children so they can be productive. This requires energy and stamina, as well. They WILL NOT listen to me the first time when asked to clean, so it requires a few loops around to get the visual and the audio that comes with the command. Then... I have raised boys that will not get pushed around, that have a sense of pride in themselves, and that enjoy team work. This means, if I am going to require that they work and be happy doing it. I have to model the behavior... so there is no "mami lying on the couch watching TV" while they bust butt... oh no, at my house, it is through action (mine, of course) that I inspire any sort of productivity :) which I am happy to do because with 3 boys, we need to get that thick air moving and cleared out, if you know what I mean!?

So, why I am getting all long and winded about this. Because I want to make it abundantly clear that it is not easy to make time for "myself". The fact that I do, and I have been for 9 years makes it appear as if it is. It is not! And when you have a family... it is not only a commitment on your own, but it must also be a family commitment. It is difficult to force myself to be active. It is almost, near impossible to find the time and/or energy to even "think" about myself, let alone my body, and forget about my mind or emotional state. If I don't make this commitment for myself, it is even more difficult for my family, my husband, my children, and much less my friends and employer to know that this is important. Carving out time for "me" so I can dance with a group of women/friends on a weekly basis (sometimes twice a week) is like a DREAM for a mother of three, professional, and entrepreneur, and very very hard to reach. But I am 100% committed to making it happen and so are my boys (to helping me make it happen)! It starts with me. It is important. It is difficult. But it IS possible. 

So... everyday, when I show up, at my belly dancing class, I congratulate myself for doing it, for taking the time, and appreciate myself for paying attention to my heart and my body. Then I thank and appreciate the beautiful students that show up each class that have no idea what they have done for me all these years.


It starts with one commitment.... then, it turns into one week at a time, to 1 month at a time, to 1 year at a time, to now 9 years of regular, weekly belly dance practice, and 6 years of those as weekly belly dance instruction, 4 years of weekly yoga practice, 3 years of Kundalini yoga studies, 2 years of weekly energy work and meditation practice, 1 year of Reiki studies and practice, 6 months of reflexology studies, and the moments and spaces keep opening up. They are an incredible gift to my heart and spirit directly from God. I can't believe I ever said no to all of it.

So, each class, I go home and I hug my hubby and my babies and thank them for "holding down the fort" for those couple of hours per week, for entertaining my energetic discussions about how amazing and beautiful my belly dancing lovelies are, and for listening to my conversations about the glute pulses or hip shimmies that we converted into Egyptian shimmies, the energy that was balanced at my clearing, the strong connection I felt to the guardians and angels at a session, their chant preference for a particular cool down, etc. They know this time is sacred for me and they know it rejuvenates my soul and my spirit and they know it provides me with the SISTERHOOD I need to make it through this crazy daily routine.


They don't giggle at my belly dancing skills, they don't roll their eyes when I say I have a performance or do a fire clearing, they don't try to convince me that this is not a "real" job. They don't judge, they just support and love me.


Many days and weekends we have spent, driving around town, meeting with studio owners, negotiating prices, signing rental agreements, and finding the perfect location for my classes. They humor me asking them for Marketing ideas when I am organizing sessions and posting my craiglist, blog, or facebook listings. They do a line up to smell essential oil combinations and help me pick the perfect one. They know how seriously I take it and they support me as a family.



If I'm too tired to drive, they drive me to class, if we have a must-do activity that might challenge the family schedule, they wait for me at the sport store or park, or restaurant and engage in their own fun while I'm in class, if there is homework and housework.... well, they usually wait for me for that one! But at least they are ready with a big glass of ice and water when I walk in and say "Hey ma! How was your class? Did you have a good time? We were waiting for you cause we wanted to eat dinner with you."


Long story, short, I feel supported in my quest to UNDERSTAND MY BODY, TO LOVE MY BODY, TO CONNECT WITH MY SPIRIT, AND TO HEAL MY SOUL SO THAT IT SHINES BRIGHT :) Belly Dance, yoga, Reiki, and all the things it comes with...brings me closer and closer each day.


All this to say that it has been a dream for so many years to train with the best and get deeper and better at my practice. I have had many opportunities with Yoga and Reiki, but not Belly Dancing, not like this. Finally, the shimmy doors open up and it is my time! I have actively looked for opportunities to train with Suhailia Salimpour the last 2 years. My students and I have belly danced to every Drum Solo by Issam Houshan and now I get to dance to him LIVE. With thousands of Suhaila's Intensive programs and workshops all around the world... Taipei, Belgium, UK, Canada, Mexico, it's been difficult to find one that I can attend. But it is finally happening, right in my backyard.

ATLANTA, here we come! And in September it's off to Austin! Finally, next weekend, I take the first step towards my Belly Dance Certification. 

I cannot tell you how my spirit feels at this very moment. Neglect, fear, sadness and sorrow brought me to belly dancing in 2005. A single mom, with a defeated and lost heart. Today, I am a new person. This time, I arrive at Belly dancing with a beautiful, loving husband, and my happy, healthy, gorgeous boys. We all hop in a car smiling, and with a grateful heart that is filled with love and joy! On our way to mami's Belly Dancing training :)

I'm a little excited, as you can tell! :) Definitely looking forward to this wonderful experience.

Namaste y'all and hope I see you at Belly Dancing this year!
I'm gonna be burning with passion for the dance and ready with new skills and techniques to share!
It's gonna be a great year!


This morning I was talking to a friend...

This morning I was talking to a friend...

a Social Worker who works with patients in a hospital that specializes in homicidal and suicidal cases. I simply asked "How are you?" She told me how stressful some of the cases had been recently. She is very committed to her work and I can understand how her well-being is directly related to her job.

It sounded like it had been a stressful week, so I asked her what she was doing for self-care. Her answer was "nothing, really. I mean, I went to bed early last night". My response to that was "you know, sleep is a necessity. I meant what are you actively doing to restore from a long day/week, to help improve your mood, help restore your mind, and move your body"  you know... increase circulation and stimulate all those lovely muscles of yours?

THERE IS NO TIME

I definitely know how it is to be stressed, I definitely know it's difficult and challenging to balance life, I know how challenging it is to fine 1 minute to yourself... so much more difficult to find 1 hour or 3 hours in a week. However, I believe in making self-care high priority. I made a commitment to myself many years ago that I would make time, at a time when I was convinced it was not possible and I proved myself wrong. It is very possible. Even with 3 kids, a husband, a dog, a demanding full time job, two side businesses, and a very active social calendar, it is possible and it is important.

WE ARE STRONG, BUSY WOMEN

Why am I sharing this? Well, I think this group is made up of a lot of strong women, definitely a lot of busy women, and whether its belly dancing, or yoga, or salsa, or swing dancing, or your Mardi Gras dance group, or some other exercise class.... I think we all need to seek ways and engage in activities that help improve our mood, execise/move our bodies, and restore our minds. Not once a week or twice a week, but at least 3 times a week. The conversation with my friend ended with me recommending she find 3 activities per week that would accomplish this and her replying "I will do 3 and report back" It's possible life will be crazy and it will take several months or a year to establish this new routine, but perhaps it got her thinking.... thinking is good. Reflecting on our daily choices and thinking about ourselves.

SIMPLE MATH

There are 168 hours in EVERY week. Make at least 3 of them about you. That is .018% of your time. that's point. zero. one. eight. percent. Not even 1%. And I know... sometimes it's because we are tired. We don't wanna move. However, that is when it is most important to move, activity boosts energy, if you are experiencing low energy you are not engaging in enough activity.

WHAT IS REST?

Fight the couch.... fight inactivity.... Awaken the Goddess and get your butt moving! Rest is not found lying down. Rest is found when your heart and mind are connected and at peace. Restore, Improve your Mood, Improve your health!

Consider moving to rest. Consider withdrawing to stay connected. Consider dancing for health.
- Karla Marie