Savoring Summer

I have two and a half weeks until school begins. Here is what I plan to do between now and then. (Note: EVERY day is filled. And that is the way I like it…FUN-filled!)

Super-Fantastic-End-of-Summer Plans:

1. Zumba:
I’m back in the groove! I’m running around the aerobics room at least two or three times a week, working on my mambo and cha-cha, followed by intense sessions of “Butts and Guts.” I got back into my routine two weeks ago, and I will keep doing it until school starts! A good workout makes you feel so accomplished.

2. Dancing:
Yesterday marked my first ballet class since I completed the Ballet Western Reserve summer intensive in July. And it was SO much fun. I took from my longtime instructor, Richard Dickinson, for the first time since November of last year; I’ve really missed him! If anyone wants a good workout with a great teacher, he’s teaching at Fred Astaire (Boardman) on Tuesdays and Saturdays (8:45 a.m. – 10:00 a.m., $10/class). I hope to take there at least two more times before resuming my school dance schedule!

3. Bicycling:
For the entire summer, my mother and I have bicycled nearly every day around the neighborhood (our rides last about an hour), and I am so proud of our persistence. Being surrounded by pleasant passersby and lovely nature can really lift your spirits, and we enjoy light conversation in sync with the whirling pedals. I believe our bike rides have been the key to my surviving this summer. It was a rough one, believe me, but I have really enjoyed our time together, and I will continue to do so…until school starts. Yikes!

4. Blogging:
This summer has also marked my first major foray into the blogosphere, and I am quite enjoying the blogging process. Between my Tumblr and my Blogspot, I have found a great personal outlet and a way to reflect on my experiences. Expect a constant stream of fresh thoughts from me!

5. Reading:
I am slowly rereading the works of Jeff Shaara, a magnificent author of historical fiction. I was introduced to his books ten years ago, and I absolutely love him. I finished Rise to Rebellion while on vacation (that book now has as many battle scars as those who actually fought in the American Revolution), and I’m now rereading The Glorious Cause.  My family also graciously granted my birthday wish list by gifting me several new books, which I hope to read before the summer’s out: My Lucky Life (Dick Van Dyke), I’m Over All That (Shirley MacLaine), Everything Is Going to Be Ok (Chronicle Books), No Place Like Home: A Memoir in 39 Apartments (Brooke Berman). Those would be in addition to the…uh…embarrassingly large amount of magazines that I have accumulated since…er…January. Yeah, you can tell that I’ve been pressed for time. But I WILL catch up with my reading!

6. Appointments:
Well, they have to happen sometime, and I guess it’s better to get them out of the way before my life becomes entirely too chaotic. So, I will be visiting my eye doctor, my dentist, and…my favorite stylist at Casal’s de Spa and Salon! I’m thinking a shoulder-length haircut. That would be…seven or eight inches of hair trimmed off? Yikes! But I’m in a mood for change, and I haven’t had hair that short since I was three years old, haha. I hope it turns out well!

7. Traveling:
Next weekend, I am traveling to Chicago with my mother and grandmother; we are visiting my aunt and uncle, and we are SUPER excited for our annual trip to the Windy City!! The big Chicago air show is also taking place while we are there, and I can’t wait to join in the excitement.

8. Reuniting:
The end of summer is also a great time to reunite with friends. Over the next three weeks, I plan on having several reunions with people I have sorely missed in my life. I hope we don’t have to go so long without seeing each other again in the future!

9: Shopping:
Well, I’ve used up most of my birthday gift cards (iTunes, Forever 21), but I will definitely use up my remaining balances before school starts! I have also scheduled our annual IKEA excursion…YIPPEE! And finally, no summer shopping would be complete without a trip to the Shaker Woods Festival, an incredible gathering of artisans and craftsmen in Columbiana county. We enjoy walking through the peaceful forest, the sunlight peeking through the lush greenery to reveal all manner of wares for sale. It’s quite an enjoyable afternoon.

10. Rehearsing:
This week, Miss Roxie Hart is rehearsing with her fabulous “boys” for the Youngstown Marquee Awards. We are having a marvelous time reminiscing about our Chicago experience, and we are really looking forward to representing the Youngstown Playhouse this weekend at the awards dinner.

In two weeks, however, I will begin rehearsing for an entirely new production, A Streetcar Named Desire, at school. I’ll be playing Stella, and I’m looking forward to learning under a new director and broadening my abilities as an actress.

Whoa, it looks like I will be a very busy girl before summer ends! But I’ll be enjoying every minute of it. 🙂


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