Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Dancing on Stars

     As you may, or may not, have noticed from my little We Heart It widget, I have found a new obsession.  Ballet. When I was little I had always dreamed of becoming a ballerina.  The grace, the poise, the beauty.  It was, I'll admit, extremely appealing to 5 year old me.  Or even more, the idea that perfection resided only in those who could stand, daintily perched on their toes.  Sometimes when looking at the pictures or watching an actual performance those feelings creep back into me and I have this terrible feeling deep in the pit of my soul.  Regret.
     You see I begged my mother for months on end to be able to take ballet classes and, after a few weeks of constant pestering, she relented and took me to a dance studio. To say I was entranced by the dancing girls and the wall of mirrors would be a severe understatement.  I ached to be a part of it, a part of the beauty and seemingly sheer perfection.  Then this world I had built up around ballet came crashing down around me.  Shards of my dream fell on me, like tiny stars, burning my imagination.  5 year old me did not like this.  We were told that it would be no problem for me to do ballet, as long as I took tap lessons along side it.  This simple request, this easy addition disgusted me.  In my mind ballet was the incarnation of beauty and grace whereas tap was the exact opposite.  I saw it as loud, obnoxious and flawed.
     My mom tried to convince me that it was fun and I would enjoy it.  This was unacceptable.  I told her over and over again that I didn't care "it's not all that cool anyways".  Finally she gave up and so did I.  The dream of being one of those girls who danced on stars had been stained, somehow it seemed less beautiful to me.
     That was until the beginning of 8th grade when we had POP day, or, People of Prominence.  We were told that we needed to find a person who had made some sort of contribution to the world and "become" them.  We spent weeks writing and memorizing a speech written in the first person pov of our subject.  I chose Anna Pavlova.  She was a famous Ballerina and after scanning tirelessly through pictures of her dancing, the spark of my old dream reemerged.

     Then again, quite recently when I was looking at pictures of ballet dancers.  Suddenly I saw it again.  The same picture that my young mind had conjured up, except more precise and perhaps even more beautiful than before.

     The last two and the first one would have to be my favorites.  But all the same, I cannot help but to feel a deep seeded feeling of regret.  I should have tried tap, the truth is: I probably would have loved it, tap is geared towards the sharpness and precision where as ballet is more about the body control and the careful blend between grace and not breaking your ankles. It really is sad to know that the opportunity was there, and I pushed it away.  Now, it's far too late to try and learn, it's just one of those things that you have to start young or, well, you just give up on it.  I wonder if perhaps anyone else has done something like I did, give up on a dream you had when you were young, or give up an opportunity that you regret? My hope of dancing was permanently shattered, the pieces are too small, and I am to old, to try to reassemble it.  But, that doesn't mean that I don't still dream when ever I look at the pictures.

Monday, July 11, 2011

What I Need

     Yes it's true, I don't particularly need anything aside from food, water, and shelter.  But I am, to my constant distaste, a teenage girl.  And as a petty, hormonal, teenage girl, there is one more thing to add to this list of needs. Clothes.  Yes, what a shocker.  But despite how trite this may sound: I actually do need more clothes.  I recently emptied my closet and sold a large portion of it to Once Upon A Child and the remainder will be donated to Goodwill.  Now what used to look like this...

Now looks like this....

    True, I am exaggerating a wee bit. But all things considering; I do need to buy some select new clothes that will make my closet... well I'd like to say happier.  So in the hopes that I will soon make a sizable amount of money through both cleaning my house and the little thing mentioned here, I have decided to compile a little shopping list of what I would like to buy.

    Floral Dresses:  If you know me at all you would know that I have a love-hate relationship with pants.  Some days there is nothing on earth that could force me into a pair of pants.  Plus; I love being a girl, all dressed up and prissy.

      High waisted skirts: Either floral or solid color.  Just something that I can pair with a nice sheer blouse or a simple tee depending on the mood I'm in.

     Shirts with lace:  I'm not a big fan of the all over lace tops but I do appreciate the shirts with an intricate detail on them such as lace or crochet inserts.

     Cardigans, Cardigans, Cardigans: I will never have too many.  I am in dire need of cardigans that I can use to layer with.  Solid, to pair with a dress, skirt, or blouse.  Bold, for a more dramatic, focus piece of the outfit.  Then, of course, floral, one can never have too many floral anything.

     These shoes: enough said. 

    Blazers: I like the preppy look.  Especially when I'm heading to my AP classes.  They just scream "I mean business".  Plus I love the versatility of them, they can easily go with anything you want to wear and can dress up any outfit.

     Snazzy tights: Pretty much all of the tights that you will find on ModCloth.  I swear that web site is my obsession, I check every couple of hours to see if there is anything new.

     Vintage inspired jewelry: Anything vintage calls to me. I love their ability to transcend time and remain beautiful and classic no matter how long they've been around.

     So now each time I go out shopping, I will have this list tight in hand.  My goal is to secure everything on this list by the time school starts so I will finally have a "happy" closet.  Happy closet = Happy Kaitlyn.  Plus I don't feel as guilty wanting these things because I know that my old clothes will be going to someone in need so, it truly is a win win situation.

All credit is given to the original owners, and designers of these pictures and clothes.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

To Welcome You Home

     I am currently crying.  Not just crying, I am incoherently, shamelessly, bawling and my fingers are shaking that it is near impossible to type.  But that's O.K. because I don't need to say anything more than to tell you to watch this, because it says everything.


     Thank you J.K Rowling for everything you have done. For your mind, your endless amount of passion, and for these books the world has so deeply fallen in love with.  And finally: thank you for giving us all a home worth returning too.

Friday, July 8, 2011

They Walk Among Us

     We see them everyday.  Whether we recognize them or not, they are still there.  Still watching us, still living apparently normal lives like the rest of the population.  But they are anything but normal, they are something far beyond what some humans will ever dream of being.  Daily miracles are they only thing that can alert us to their presence. That shows they truly do walk among us
     What am I talking about you my ask?  If you guessed aliens.... well then I don't know what to say to you.... creeps.  No. I happen to be speaking of something a bit less sci-fy and a bit more.. pure.  Angels.  Regardless of if you believe in God or not, it can't be argued that some people aren't the true incarnation of all things good.  These are the people we should aspire to be.  They are selfless and caring, truthful and honest, they are all things good and not in the least bit evil.  Miracles despite their grandeur or simplicity can be traced back to them.  Now for clarification: I am not speaking of the winged angels residing in heaven.  I am speaking of the people who go above and beyond what is "normal" when it comes to doing good deeds.

     This is the exact thing I saw the last time I flew on an air plane.  An act of kindness that only a true human angel would preform.  As per usual, we had a very early flight down to Florida.  If you are anything like, well, everyone, you would be fairly irritated to be getting on a flight at 7:00 a.m.  Now it really isn't all that bad if you are riding in first class though.  Big squashy seats, a somewhat decent breakfast, and free drinks.  Sounds like a dream, I know.  Well unfortunately we didn't have first class seats.  Meaning we sat in the ever so wonderful coach seats.  Cramped, uncomfortable, loud. Yeah well to sum it all up: no one likes coach. But this is irrelevant to the story at hand.

      Once we finally got up in the air and were "permitted to move about the cabin" the pilot came on over the intercom announcing that we had an Iraqi soldier on the plane with us and that it would be much appreciated if, when we landed, we allowed him off the plane first.  He was going back to his station in a few weeks and it would be great if he could enjoy as much of his vacation as possible.  This set the plane-goers in a bit of a clapping frenzy that I politely joined in.
     This man was an angel in my mind.  He gives up everything, puts his life on the line, all for the safety of complete strangers, people he will never know. Yet still he fights to protect us.  Selflessness is a very strong, primary characteristic that all angels posses and he is the pure embodiment of it.  I cannot truthfully say that I support the war.  I simply don't believe in it.  But seeing as I am completely uneducated when it comes down to anything regarding warfare, I am in absolutely no place to be saying what should or should not be going on over seas.

    But this was just the beginning of an inspiring plane ride.  We were blessed to have another angel among us.  Sadly I didn't have the mind to write down his name so, for the sake of this post, we shall call him our John Doe.  John Doe was a wealthy business man on his way down to a work conference in Florida.  How do I know this? I don't.  But I did infer it.  John was riding in first class, signifying a slight amount of wealth.  Now this isn't  enough to prove he was a wealthy nor that he was a business man but something else did.  His suit.  Let's face it; planes are uncomfortable, they are always either two hot, or too cold and no normal person wears a suit on one.  Face it, what you wear is fairly symbolic of your line of work.  Target workers wear red shirts and khakis, business men wear suits.  And NOTHING, I mean nothing says "I'm wealthy" the way Armani does.  Don't ask how I know it was Armani... just don't, but I'd bet my life that it was.

    So Mr. John would be the last person you would expect to be an angel, but he was.  After the pilot's little announcement and the clapping died down, we get word that Mr. Armani (John Doe) wanted to swap seats with the soldier.  Now what's so major about that? You may be asking.  To answer that question I will refer you to paragraph 3 of this post.  And not only was the soldier in coach, no, he was in the very back of the plane. With the screaming children, the *ahem* larger people who don't fit in the seat properly, yet Mr. John wanted to trade anyways.

    This is an angel to me.  A person who is so selfless that they will give up anything, regardless of how petty, for the bettering of the lives of strangers. I don't know if this fits the bill to be called a miracle but I do know that it is people like Mr. John and the soldier who make miracles happen.  They are angels and they are the ones who we should all aspire to be. If only everyone in our society acted like this, could you just imagine how beautiful the world would be then?
   So go.  Be a miracle.  It doesn't matter how major or how minor your actions are because whether you know it or not, someone will see it, and they will be inspired in the way I have.  Do good deeds and be happy to help a stranger.  Be an angel and recognize the unrecognized, for it only takes a second glance to see that they truly do walk among us.

Credit for all of these pictures goes to their original owners.

Sunday, July 3, 2011


     It's basic human nature, to strive for achievement. For some of us, it's all we strive for.  In today's society we are constantly being pushed to be the best at everything we do.  Competition is everywhere, in sports, school, and basically every aspect of daily life.  Everyday we are searching for something that will set us apart from everyone else, to put us that much further ahead of those we are competing against.  But the unfortunate thing is: sometimes we don't even know what we are competing for.  In all truthfulness though, the blame for this generation's obsession with success can all be blamed on parents. They may have the best intentions, what parent doesn't want their child to succeed?  But sadly it seems that what they are doing when they are pushing us to be the best, is living through us. 
     This was a conversation brought up quite some time ago in communications class.  We arranged our chairs in something resembling a...  well it certainly couldn't be called a circle.  Some people had parents that certainly fit the definition of living through their child but some surprisingly couldn't care less about if their child was in the top 10% of the class or was going to an ivy league college.  But the main trend I have noticed in honors students like myself is simple.

It starts with an instrument, at a young age preferably.  Typically it's piano.  They want us to be the next musical prodigy before we turn 7. Anything to get the attention of colleges or prestigious boarding schools.

Then its on to sports.  This is a path my parents were relentless on.  Basketball, gymnastics, volleyball, tennis, swimming, diving, and nearly every other sport that could result in success.  Lets be frank though, I sucked at them all, I was somewhat decent at volleyball and diving but everything else was like my worst nightmare.  Except for swimming.  I loved that, I wasn't the fastest but I was still pretty good at it and won a few ribbons for  it when I was younger.

But then there is academics.  You cant have the perfect child unless their unnaturally smart.  Drilling the child with math problems until their brain goes numb and they are dreaming of the multiplication times table.
(credit for this picture goes to the original photographer)

Then finally the last part to creating the perfect child is throwing in a little something unexpected.  Something that is way above and beyond every other insane parent's child.  Something that the competition cant say they have done or accomplished. Something that makes them the-

    And there you go, all of the ingredients necessary to create the perfect child.  But if my opinion means anything I would like to add something else, something that truthfully maybe the most important. Determination.  Not the parent's, the child's.  They have to want it more then the parents do.  This is something that I believe is wrongly overlooked when parents try to create their perfect child.  So La veritá della vita: Parents are crazy, but make sure that what your doing, what success you are trying to accomplish is born from your own determination.  Do what you want to do and achieve success in something you love, or else, it is only success in the eyes of your parents.