classical ballet for the modern day

60 minutes is one of my favorite shows, but thanks to sunday football, i often forget to watch it because it's never on when it's supposed to be. their stories are always riveting, even when you don't think they're going to be, and generally i think they don't sensationalize human suffering or tragedy the way that a large majority the media does. instead, they create in-depth reports across a wide spectrum of subjects and provide thought-provoking stories that leave me wanting to learn more.

last night, however, 60 minutes knocked it out of the park with a report about the new york city ballet, peter martins and the legend that is george balanchine. it is fascinating and i could write for hours about it, but you should just watch the report. you won't regret it, i promise:

the 60 minutes page for this report also features a lot of web extras and lovely photographs of the nycb.

fun fact #1: the north carolina dance theatre is fortunate enough to be able to perform balanchine choreography, as one of its artistic directors, patricia mcbride, danced with balanchine in the new york city ballet. the balanchine trust is exclusive and charlotte is extremely lucky to have access to his legendary choreography.

fun fact #2: peter martins choreographed two of the barbie ballet movies (nutcraker and swan lake). if you haven't seen these, they do not feature real people, but cartoon barbie. i didn't realize that they had actual original choreography. go figure. barbie's got all kinds of people in her corner.

image of nycb via paul kolnik


thanksgiving edition

as i sit on the couch this evening in my stretchy pants, surrounded by my family, black friday flyers, half eaten snack trays on the coffee table, and christmas decoration boxes waiting to be opened, my heart is full of gratitude for the blessings i've been given. sometimes i can't believe how blessed i've been. sometimes it just doesn't seem fair. 

but i am thankful for these blessings every year. the Lord has given to my family freely and while i still wait for particular things that i want to be realized, i am more certain than ever that He is in control and will fulfill my desires in His time. but this holiday, more than others, i think the Lord is teaching me that even if He doesn't, and even if all of the things for which i am so thankful are lost, that He is still good. that He still loves me and is working in my life. it's one thing to be thankful for the things in this world that are fragile and fleeting. it's another to know that the things to which i hold so tightly aren't the most important things and that without them, i still have a pupose, a hope and a future. and for that, i am most thankful.

i hope you all have blessed holiday weekends with your family. and lots of turkey and cranberry sauce.

image via dailycupofcouture



weekend in review

i spent this past weekend in one of my favorite places in the world - southern pines, nc. it's sweet and beautiful and i have only happy memories there. bonus, my friend lacey's parents (the aforementioned laurie) live there and their house is one of the few places in the world where i feel as at home as i do at my own house. they are warm and hospitable and fun to play board games with. their couch is remarkably comfortable and i am always thankful when i get to spend time there. sadly this weekend, i took very few photos of anything of merit, but since it's so lovely there i figured i'd share the few i did find time to take.

when i arrived after what seemed like the longest drive ever on friday evening thanks to charlotte traffic, i was greeted immediately with wine and homemade pumpkin cream cheese bars. (and i did go ahead, in case you were wondering.) we ate dinner after that, which seemed like a great decision. then, lacey and i watched parks and rec reruns, i fell asleep on the couch before 9:00 p.m. and was in bed shortly thereafter. bliss.

the next morning, we woke up with the sun to hit the semi-annual fair barn sale, where i have scored plenty of fabulous flea market finds in the past. i wore my warmest gym clothes, which really just equal comfortable clothes that are not pajamas, and apprently looked sportier and more energetic than i felt, as i was asked by one of the vendors at the sale if i was running the half marathon in pinehurst that morning. because lots of people go to the flea market before they run a half marathon. although. flea marketing is sort of like a half marathon, as it takes a great deal of training, patience and stamina. perhaps i'll keep it in mind as a warm up if i ever do run a half marathon.

we scored a few deals, watched the horses on the track outside the fair barn and then headed back to swank (the best coffee shop in town!) for some lattes, muffins and catch up time with our friend, sarah martin, who is awesome. i have written about her before here, and you should be her friend too.

after coffee, lacey and i headed back to the house where we were greeted with more coffee (a homemade red velvet latte that was spiked, as a matter of fact) and homemade caramel sea salt pie. lacey's mom has got it going on. clearly.

the rest of the weekend was spent shopping and enjoying a dinner party hosted by lacey's parents on saturday night, where we had a delicious meal including homemade eggnog, and a great deal of chat with the neighbors. the weekend was relaxing and a wonderful way to kick off a short holiday week! laurie and dale, thank you for your hospitality as always, and thank you for packing me a cooler when i left. you're awesome. lacey, i'm glad you share my love for thrift stores, tjmaxx, replacing meals with junk food and not showering. and that you have a cool family and are from an awesome town. you're the greatest and i'm thankful for you.


autumn in new york

a few weekends ago, i took a quick spontaneous trip with my parents to visit upstate new york - where i was born and spent the first five years of my life. my grandma (hi, grandma!) and a large majority of my dad's family still lives there, and it's always one of my favorite places to visit. i haven't visited this time of year in quite a while, and i forgot how truly wonderful it is in the fall. i feel like i can share photos and tell you about it, but experiencing it is really the only way to understand what i'm talking about. it's idyllic. it's like something straight out of a country living magazine or a movie set in new england. the trees everywhere were literally ablaze. it was like they'd been photoshopped. seriously. there were corn mazes and farmers markets and pumpkin patches everywhere. haybales and scarecrows lined all of the streets in each of the small towns we visited and you haven't seen a farmer's market until you've visited one there. the produce is unreal.

we kicked off saturday morning with coffee at grandma's house and then we headed to herman's farm market for homemade doughnuts and nostalgia. i grew up going each fall to pick out a pumpkin at herman's and there's something about the smell there that takes me back to my days as a wee one. they make the most incredbile apple cider on site and have more varieties of apples than i knew existed. their produce makes me wish i could shop there every saturday morning. i was a photo-taking fool during our visit and it was likely very clear to every customer there that i was most definitely not a local. little did they know we have photos from 23 years ago at herman's. once a local, always a local.

after herman's (but not before i downed 1.5 homemade doughnuts before we left the parking lot), we headed to fairport, which is quite possibly the most adorable small town in america. i wish i'd taken more pictures there, but i was too busy shopping at the craft supply consignment store (the greatest idea ever) and roaming the tents at their farmer's market.

finally, we headed up to bristol mountain, which isn't actually a mountain at all, but just one of the really high hills that flank new york's finger lakes. the drive took about an hour and a half one way, but it was through tons of unbelievable farm land. the last time i was at bristol mountain, it was to ski with my family a few christmases ago. this visit was far better than the last, mainly because i didn't spend it tumbling down a green slope in a fit of frustration and persperation. i am pretty not awesome at skiing. instead, we rode the ski lift up a golden slope and enjoyed the lovely view from the top.

i like to think that this is about as close to heaven on earth as it gets. this time of year, i'm ready to relocate here permanently. but then it starts to snow and i generally re-think that plan when it's still snowing in may. and when i remember there are no chick-fil-as there. 


psalm 46

well friends, the election is over. i will save the political commentary for those who feel its necessary to rant via social media platforms, but whether you think another four years with obama is going to save our contry or ruin it, the good news is he's not really the one with the control. i read this pslam a few weeks ago and thought it was quite appropriate for our country's current circumstances. i am thankful that we still live free, are able to elect our leaders, and that we still answer to a God who is more powerful than any politician will ever be.

God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.

there is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy place where the Most High dwells.
God is within her, she will not fall;
God will help her at break of day.
nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall;
He lifts his voice, the earth melts.

the Lord Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.

come and see what the Lord has done,
the desolations he has brought on the earth.
He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth.
He breaks the bow and shatters the spear;
he burns the shields with fire.  
He says "Be still and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth."

the Lord Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.

image via thefullerview.tumblr


sunday edition #10

you know those kids you see on corners and in front of shopping plazas with cardboard signs advertising sales? some twirl them. some dance with them. some stand there awkwardly and wave. watch the above clip from the office to see what i'm talking about if you're still not following (although i'd recommend watching it either way because it's hilarious). i maintain that there are probably few jobs in the world worse than this, so for some reason seeing those poor teenagers always makes me happy to know that someone has enough work ethic to make sure i know about a store closing or a mattress sale. they're adorable and i always wave at them.

last night on facebook, i discovered this photo. this is my cousin, mitch. he's a pretty big deal - major sports star at his high school in new york and likely heading to college on a scholarship next year. and this is mitch dressed as a mattress. advertising a mattress sale. perhaps you won't find this as excellent as i do, but i laughed for a full minute straight at this photo last night. mitch just skyrocketed to the top of my people-who-are-really-cool list. i hope this brightened your day almost as much as seeing this in person on the side of the road. and next time you see a poor kid trying to spin a sign and attract attention? wave at him for me. he's somebody's cousin.


they're here

this morning, my coworkers and i deemed it "bagel thursday" and took a walk to panera for a little carbo loading. as overstreet mall crawled with professionals with somewhere far more important to be than in line for some empty calories, i realized something amazing.

the starbucks red cups are here.

i was so excited in fact, that i forgot all appropriate social behavior, stopped walking and practically shouted "STARBUCKS HAS RED CUPS!" so loudly that people looked. people holding red cups, that is.
some may argue that it's too early. i am not some. call me crazy, but grande americanos are far more delicious when the cup is red. and that is all.

image: biggerinreallife