Don’t Sell Yourself Short

Hello dear readers!

Longtime no…write? As usual, I’ve been off on adventures, this time to the single’s motherland: Las Vegas. Don’t worry, the “what happens in Vegas” rules don’t apply in this case- stay tuned for all the reasons I enjoy visiting Sin City so much. And, in case you were wondering, Yes, it was really hot out there.

Today, I was inspired to write for a number of different reasons. When I get back from vacation, regardless of where I’m going, I tend to get a bit introspective about life, in general. Relaxing and thinking about the day’s interactions also helps pass up the otherwise tedious commute hours. But, what primarily got the wheels turning was a conversation I had with one of my girlfriends today. Now, I can only speak from experience, but there seems to be an epidemic of bright, talented young women out there who are self-deprecating to a fault. Disparaging might be a better word for it. I consider myself very lucky to have such wonderful friends, they’re all ladies that I admire, and they have qualities that I aspire to embody. It completely baffles me when they turn around and fixate on the few things they dislike about themselves, or compare themselves to other people. Of course, being on the outside, it’s easy for me to tell them that they’re absolutely crazy, that they have so much to be proud of and that the people in their lives think so highly of them. It’s interesting that our friends almost always, in so many words, think we’re selling ourselves short.

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I’m going to go ahead and throw this piece of advice out there:

Don’t sell yourself short. Period.

Surprise, surprise, like most pieces of “helpful” advice, this is easier said than done. Sometimes, you even need to stand up for yourself a little bit, like Karen Walker over here:

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I had a little bump in the road a while back, and no one was more surprised than me when I, quite literally stood up for myself and announced: “Um, wait. I’m amazing!” As women, we’re told not to brag, not to tell people what to do, or how it is, but when did this manifest into sabotaging our own self-confidence? Just because a relationship or job isn’t the best for us, doesn’t mean that there’s something fundamentally wrong with us. It takes quite a bit of self-assessment to figure this out, and that certainly isn’t easy. It’s possible, though. Like I’ve said before, there will always be things in our lives that we will want to “upgrade,” or paths we occasionally wish we had taken. But, sometimes we need to stand up for ourselves, because no one else can really do it for us.

EVA♥

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Five Things

Hello all!

Five Things is back! It’s close enough to Wednesday, right?

I was trying to get through the drudgery of my evening commute, catching up on my Bloglovin’ feed, when I stumbled across blogger and florist Keira Lennox’s latest post on her blog, A Pretty Penny. She’s right- blogging consistently is hard, especially with a full-time job and the rest of your life to manage. When do all you full-time bloggers have time to do your dishes?! I too have recently gotten hooked on The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt on Netflix, and then there are all the amazing places to eat and cocktails to have around the Bay Area. I’m beginning to discover that I have a slight propensity to multi-task a little too much. As I write this, I’m also trying to balance watching re-runs, a video on Youtube, keep up a text conversation with one of my girlfriends, and whiten my teeth. Too many things, yes? Sometimes I find myself just wanting to lay in bed and stare at the ceiling for a bit. Luckily, I can only do that for so long before I find myself jumping up to do the next thing! We all need a break every-once-in-a-while, and it’s moments like those that prompt me to get up and write all over again. One day at a time, I guess! With that…here are this week’s Five Things!

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I got to spend some time at a lovely evening farmer’s market this week. The whole thing was oddly picturesque- there’s just something about walking down the street with a big bunch of dahlia’s, you can’t help but be in a good mood.

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It’s not a birthday celebration without a candle and little crème brûlée. This last year’s birthday was extra-fancy, if I may say. I’m already very much looking forward to the next one!

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I spent my post-birthday weekend wine tasting in Edna Valley, just outside of San Luis Obispo. Apparently, at 28 you can only drink so much wine before you have to sit down. My good friend Maren and I lasted for about two tastings before we needed a nap. Pictured is Claiborne & Churchill Winery’s latest bottle of rosé , named after one of the founder’s daughters: Cuvée Elizabeth.

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Ivette Ivens/ ivetteivens.com

Everyone I know knows that I have a mild obsession with French Bulldogs. When this article was published on Buzzfeed two days ago, I had a number of people sending me the link within hours. Photographer Ivette Ivens’ work pretty much went viral from all the cute. After all, baby + wrinkled puppy= instant happiness.

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While it’s nice having a break from being in the studio every day, I find myself really missing ballet class. And having a hard time mustering up the energy to make it through an entire evening class. I do like popping in for the occasional barre, or taking yoga class.

Moral of the story: there really should be more hours in a day.

EVA♥

That Voice No One Likes

Hello everyone!

It’s been the usual in Watch Me Juggle land. All the juggling! Yet, despite having many fun and exciting things to do, places to go, and people to see, I’ve noted the little “Negative Nancy” voice in my head that likes to inject her fabulous commentary to everything lately. Take a few of the following scenarios for example:

Trying out a new trend? “Yeah, you look really stupid in that,” she says, “Your friends have children, seriously, put a real shirt on.”

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C/o SNL/ giphy.com

(Just in case you didn’t know, Nancy is a dead ringer for Rachel Dratch as Debbie Downer.)

Wake up feeling motivated and plan a workout? “You’re way too old for that, seriously, look at your face in the morning. You might scare children. Stay inside. Eat a doughnut. Eat six doughnuts, who cares?!”

That guy you like not text you back in the acceptable 35 second time frame? Nancy says: “He totally got your text. He just thinks you’re really lame. Oh, and annoying.”

Open your mouth in the meeting, and the person in charge threatens to hit you with a stick…wait, no, that actually happened. But Nancy adds that, like she said before, “you’re obviously really annoying.” Just in case you already didn’t feel like a bozo.

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C/o NBC via college-life-crisis.tumblr.com

For lack of a better descriptor, Nancy is an ass and no one should ever listen to her.  I know I’m not alone in feeling this way- everyone has that voice, though it might take on different forms. Who doesn’t remember seeing a cartoon from their childhood with the angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other? It’s the age-old “Should I?/Shouldn’t I?” dilemma. Who and what, for that matter, should I be listening to? Unfortunately, the theory behind these cute cartoons can’t be left behind in your childhood- odds are they will follow you around for quite sometime. I don’t think there’s too much rhyme or reason to when the negativity creeps in, but it somehow does. As someone who manages frequent anxiety, the absolute worst seems to be when nothing, in fact, is wrong. It seems like a terribly sad thing that I sometimes can’t enjoy the little things going well in life. For example, I was in a fantastic, productive mood the other day, coming home after running some errands; there’s Negative Nancy, reminding me of the latest mishap, or presenting some worst-case-scenario. Sometimes it’s as ridiculous as “Oh, you’re happy now, but remember, you have to go to the dentist in a month!” or “Hey, you never know when you might get hit by a bus!” I wish I was making this stuff up.  It’s the classic good-versus-evil, glass half-empty of half-full  metaphor that we all know and love. What makes me feel better, even in the lowest moments, is that so many people can relate. I’d like to think that even Beyoncé has those days. (She did have that one mishap with her bangs a while back, if you do recall.) Then again, even Michelle Obama wants to be Beyoncé, so this might be a total assumption on my part.

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C/o fiercegifs.tumblr.com

What helps me the most in these moments is being the anti-Nancy, so to speak. Turn your focus to something inherently positive, even it’s a simple, good cup of coffee or the latest dog gif making its rounds on the internet. Reach out to a friend, someone you trust, or go for a walk. I know none of these things are revolutionary or extraordinary methods of problem solving, but they tend to help when reason goes out the window, and they sure do make Nancy pipe down for a while.

Or you can just pretend to be your own version of Beyoncé in the meantime. That sounds like a plan, right?

EVA♥

From Studio to Studio- an Interview

Hi everyone!

I’ve been here, over-sharing my personal and professional life on Watch Me Juggle for quite a while now. I’ll admit that I’ve dabbled with applying to the occasional freelance writing gig here and there, but not much ever came of it.

Well… I was somehow able to talk my way into letting the ballet company I work for write for their blog. The conversation went something like this:

Me: “Oh, I love writing! I have a little blog where I talk about ballet, teaching, and all the things that I do/eat on a weekly basis.”

Them: “Well, if you ever want to write things for our blog you can.”

Me: *falls over*

….

That’s the very glamorous story of how my writing ended up not just on my little corner of the internet. Needless to say I was very excited about it. As the title of my blog suggests, not only did a submit my writing for a post, it happened to be a post containing my very first interview ever. I decided to sit down with one of my favorite people, dancer Erin Yarbrough, who made such a huge impression on me as my teacher years ago. She’s one of the main reasons I still dance today. Turns out, all you really need is one or two people to really believe in you. Lucky me, I ended up working alongside her in the very same studio I grew up dancing in. And I still learn from her! Pretty cool, right?

You can read my interview with her hereon the Smuin Ballet website. If you ever find yourself in San Francisco Bay Area, make sure you check them out! (I’m not shamelessly promoting my own company here, or anything.)

In other, incredibly exciting new, I got to take company class with the dancers of Smuin just the other day. Had you told my young self that I would be doing this one day, I would have frankly told you you were full of crap.

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Look! It’s a picture of Erin & I. 

 Since my transition to teaching almost daily ballet classes, I haven’t gotten much of a chance to take class as much as I would like. To put it bluntly, I felt totally out of shape. I was just glad I didn’t fall on my face in front of everyone. It made what promised to be just an average day an amazing day. Often I forget just how lucky I am to work in a field I’m so wholeheartedly passionate about. Just the other day, one of my students asked me if I get paid to teach them ballet. I told her I do, but sometimes I forget that it’s my job. I couldn’t ask for better.

EVA♥

It’s like I have ESPN, or something…

Hi everyone!

Oh, boy…here comes the gif:

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Ahhhh! It’s almost 2015, people! Quick! Isn’t it time to do all of the things that we didn’t get a chance to do this year…or something?

 So, according to the lovely Taylor over at The Daily Tay, I’m all kinds of lame for not doing the requisite “2014 Recap” post, followed by a resolutions post. I’m a rogue blogger, what can I say? What I am doing, in a nod to the upcoming new year, is participating in The Other Juliette‘s fabulous link up with Amber, and predicting what this next year has in store for me. To be quite honest, I think the last time I was given an assignment like this, it was 1999, and my 7th grade English teacher made us write a paper predicting what was going to happen when Y2K hit. Yes, I’m dating myself. No, I cannot explain why the majority of people were in a total panic because they thought that the computers wouldn’t be able to count to 2000. Get it together everyone. Anyway, I did take a moment to reflect on what my life might look like in 2015.

So, here goes nothing:

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YES  

  • I’ll continue to cram as many ballet/modern dance classes into my day as possible. There’s still room people!
  • I see many a trip to Las Vegas in my future
  • I’ll begin the process of getting rid of my “party trick” tooth, and getting the smile I’ve been dreaming about since I was 14.
  • I’ll continue making life’s lemons into lemonade, and then promptly add vodka for a refreshing twist.
  • I’ll finally get my kitchen organized, and take my microwave out of the box.
  • I will take stand-up paddleboarding lessons over the summer.
  • I’ll visit New Orleans again.
  • I’ll become an honorary aunt again. Isn’t that one of the perks of having married friends?
  • Get a new laptop, “fancify” Watch Me Juggle a bit, and get to know some bay area bloggers in real life.
  • I will visit my alma mater and spend some much-needed time in Santa Barbara.

NO

  • I’ll take up running for fun.
  • I will develop a taste for radicchio. It’s pretty to look at, but blech
  • The fabulous shoe buying will cease.
  • I’ll decide that living alone sucks and promptly move into a house filled with people I don’t know.
  • I will give up coffee in favor of large glasses of water. (haha! That’s funny, right?)

Wait…what? (Maybe)

  •  Get those tattoos I’ve been thinking about for ages.
  • Travel to England or Malaysia. Or both, why not?
  • Buy a Kindle. I love the idea of buying books at a whim while traveling/commuting.
  • Start making videos to post on my blog.
  • Do that photo shoot I’ve been thinking about for ages. I’m long overdue for some pictures of myself dancing.

What do you think, everyone? Doable or totally ridiculous? I almost included “shaving half of my head like Ke$ha” under my ‘No’ list, but thought better of it. I will make no promises.

EVA♥

Five Things

Hello everyone, and Happy Wednesday.

Five Things is back! This week features lots of dessert, some inspiration, and a few giggles. You know, the usual. I’m sure I’ve said this before, but it’s important to remember all the little things that make you happy. It’s my #1 cure for any and all anxiety life might chuck at you. When I’m having a bad day, for example, I like to curl up at home and watch Golden Girls reruns. Yes, that’s right. I am a frequent Hallmark channel-watcher. Top this off with some take-out comfort food and maybe a bubble bath. Even better, watch re-runs in the bath. I do that too. Don’t judge me- we all have our things!

Anyway, first off is a fabulous pumpkin flan that I had for dessert last week. Imagine rich, crust-less pumpkin pie. YUM!

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{Please forgive the grainy photo- it was all that ambient lighting in the restaurant!}

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{The view from the Starlight Room, post all-night dancing. Mark of a good night.}

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{I was feeling a little crafty the other day, so I whipped up a little cinnamon crumb coffee cafe. I literally had cake for breakfast multiple times in the week.}

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{Love….I probably should have picked this up from the Urban Outfitters book section, to be quite honest.}

and lastly, if any of you remember Jimmy Kimmel’s past holiday pranks, here’s this year’s Halloween prank.

 

{Both horrifying and hilarious at the same time. Ah, the joy of children.}

Hope everyone is having a good week thus far!

EVA♥

Notable Quotes. Quotable Notes.

Hello all!

This week feels like a week of endless Mondays.

Ever have one of those?

….

Today’s Blogtober prompt was to share your favorite quote. Now, if you know me, that’s like asking me to choose my favorite flavor of ice cream, or doughnut. It’s just not possible. So, I thought I would share some of my latest discoveries, all of which are currently residing on my “Notable Quotes. Quotable Notes” board on my Pinterest. I wouldn’t call myself an avid pinner, by any means, but I do like to peruse the site, from time to time. I’ve discovered some beautiful and inspiring things there.

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These are some of my favorites, for the moment.

Words are like food for me- some people find a dish they enjoy, and never feel the need to try anything else. I, on the other hand, find something delicious and suddenly want to try more. I want more thought-provoking words, more poems, more things to connect to. I’ve been rather restless this whole week, and sometimes those words of encouragement are all you need. I think that sometimes our lives get too cluttered with junk: junk food, “guilty pleasure” tv, cheap clothes, excessive social media. I love reading about the latest beauty trends as much as the next gal, but do I really need to know what Kim Kardashian’s new haircut looks like according to Facebook? No. No I do not. It’s much easier to fill up on the frivolous stuff than to sit down and to think about things that really matter. To me that’s art, music, the people that are close to me- the things that I’m passionate about. When things get a little dicey, those are the things that I want, along with the little, constant reminder:

I am, I am, I am.

EVA♥

Who knew…

Hello everyone!

It’s finally Friday.

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Yes, that is a tiny umbrella. The kind you put in tropical cocktails.

Have you ever had one of those weeks where you seem to have too much to do and not enough time to do it in? Coupled with the fact that this week seems to have dragged on forever, it’s been quite the roller coaster. And what do I do when things get crazy? I close my shades, light my favorite candle, and schlub around the house with a cup of coffee for company. Glamorous, right? Oh, so productive as well.

I never thought blogging would be the one thing that I want to do in the day. To the point where I would curl up with my laptop in the same manner that I might curl up with a book at the end of an evening. I never thought that it would be the thing that would make my life seem calm and normal, a comforting thing, really. Sure, I tend to get really down on myself when I don’t make it point to publish on time. Of course, this schedule is entirely imaginary and entirely dependent on me. Then again, what schedule isn’t totally arbitrary when it comes down to it?  I’m really enjoying giving myself challenges, and cultivating my little space on the internet. I didn’t give much thought as to how much time and energy I would want to pour into Watch Me Juggle when it all began a little over a year ago, and while the idea of being a full-time blogger sounded beautifully appealing, I had no idea of how to even remotely get there. I just remembered that I once had a dream about being a writer, and that I wanted to write, regardless of whether or not anyone was reading. And that’s all you need, really. So, who knew?

Hope everyone has a fabulous weekend, and Happy Fleet Week to all of my San Franciscans out there!

EVA♥

It’s Blogtober!

Hello everyone!

Happy Monday! Today, I’ve decided to do something new on the blog this month:

It’s Blogtober!

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Ok…I’m a little late to the #Blogtober14 party, but cut me some slack. It’s only been the first year of Watch Me Juggle, after all. This little link up was inspired by the lovely Taylor Wolfe, who’s blog, The Daily Tay, I recently stumbled across on Bloglovin’. While I’m not promising I’ll be able to keep up with blogging every day, I will certainly try to ace as many of these prompts as I can this month. You might even see some writing from me on the weekends! Gasp! I’ve unfortunately missed the first five prompts, and they were pretty good ones, too. So good, in fact, that I might revisit them later. I’ll admit it, I might just customize this thing to my liking. Rules, schmules. Let’s begin:

10 Things I’d Tell Myself When I Started Blogging:

Things change a lot in a year, and looking back to the place I was a year ago, I can say that I’m so proud of my work. Both on and off Watch Me Juggle. So, like the prompt suggests, these are some of the things I’d tell myself:

1. Everything is going to be fine. I’m still constantly telling myself this, but a year ago, I could have really used the advice. On a quiet, uneventful evening, I wrote my first post. My job/financial situation wasn’t the most stable, and I felt uneasy 99% of the time.

2. People are going to read your blog! Don’t post something ridiculous or try to be someone you’re not. Take pride in the work you do, and trust that you can represent yourself better than anyone else can.

3.  Plug, plug, plug. Shamelessly. While I don’t needlessly start conversations with people with the fact that I have a blog, I sometimes feel odd about blasting every blog post all over social media. What I often forget is that there are people out there who are experts at this, even basing entire careers off of it. Hello, social media marketing! Yes, I’m still new at this stuff, but I’m going to tweet the living daylights out of my blog in the hopes of reaching some new internet friends out there.

4. Why are you not on Instagram? No, seriously, why? It’s amazing. It’s like a more visual Facebook, but back when Facebook was simple and still cool.

5. More pictures, please. I’m still working on this one. It’s all too common that I end up enjoying myself too much while out and about, and neglect to document it in photos. I’ve gotten a bit better, but would still like more photographic proof of the fact that I do more than dance, all the time. Like, sometimes, I like to go out and dance…in new places. It’s totally different.

6. Find your niche and enjoy. I frequent fashion and beauty blogs non-stop. I love seeing the outfits everyone else puts together and exploring the plethora of makeup tutorials plastered all over Youtube.  While I enjoy all that, and like to feature fashion/beauty-oriented things on the blog, I think a huge part of who I am as a writer is based on my life experiences- my stories, if you will. Luckily, there’s a convenient category of “lifestyle” blogging, which allows me to write about, well, life.

7. Don’t force it. This one is a hard one. There are some days that the ideas just aren’t there, and the drafts you started weeks ago are collecting dust, looking totally uninspiring. Be kind to yourself, go for a walk, and let your mind rest for a bit. The writing will continue as always.

8. Find inspiration where you can. They say that there are no more “original ideas” when it comes to art. All those amazing blogs you read? A wealth of inspiration. Write about things you want to read!

9. A little everyday goes a long way. Take advantage of the times you feel inspired to write. Sure, you might have already published your post for the day, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start one for the next day. Or the next.

10. Enjoy the positive feedback. The people who genuinely enjoy your blog will tell you. Accept these compliments, and let them give you confidence. Don’t forget to pass the positivity on to other people.

You can do anything. ‘duh.

EVA ♥

Brain is Cobwebs.

Hello everybody!

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So today after work, I spent exactly 2 hours wandering about both my home and my neighborhood, all while chatting with a friend of mine on the phone. Mother, if you’re reading this, I’m sorry about the phone bill and all. Anyway, after we caught up with each other, said friend, Emily, and I bounced some ideas around for the blog. Being a lucky dog who gets paid to edit content and churn out blog for a variety of companies, she’s a pretty good judge of what strikes a chord with all of you on the other end of this internet machine.

Meanwhile, like today’s title indicates, the interior of my brain is essentially a mass of cobwebs. If I could draw a crude depiction of what was in there now, I would go with one of those little blank faced emojis- you know, the kind with a hyphen for a mouth- and some generic, dust-covered linoleum tiling. I’m entirely stumped. Sure, I have some vague ideas of what I would like to write about, but nothing seems to stick around long enough to come to fruition.  Apparently, the summer seems to bring on a universal topic-drought for bloggers everywhere. It wasn’t until I came across Whitney’s post on I Wore Yoga Pants to Work that I felt comfortable sharing my recent ridiculous ideas, or lack thereof, with you:

There was a very large moth on my car the other day. So big it covered half my license plate…the end.

I live alone, and sometimes this leads to socially awkward behavior. Like spontaneous singing. Is it just me? 

When your boyfriend can’t dress himself, aka adventures in makeshift personal shopping. 

Weird dreams I’ve had over the last month. 

Maybe I’ll just do a collage of fancy coffee I drank this week? That’s a thing, right? 

 I suck at numbers so bad and I’m not sure how to manage my 401k. 

Dear God, I’m almost 27. Maybe I should post a list of things to do before I turn 30? Nevermind, too stressful. 

I took the Enneagram Personality Test yesterday. My results were absolutely accurate. This might actually have some potential- to be continued.

Odd rituals I find comforting in times of stress. This often involves TV Land reruns. Also, some potential here…

and

I haven’t taken a dance class in two weeks. I think I’m experiencing something akin to cabin-fever.  Rolling around on the ground is like dancing, right? 

I hope you find the idea of even beginning to write about these topics as amusing as I do. That moth, though. I literally had to stop myself from posting a photo of this thing for the last two Wednesdays’ blogs. Also, is blogging about blogging a faux pas? If it is, I’m horribly gauche.

I’m still totally surprised/amazed/so flattered that anyone actually reads my blog. I love you all for it, and it makes me absurdly happy. Thanks for reading.

EVA ♥