Archive of ‘Thinking Out Loud’ Posts

What Are You Fighting For?

11988583_911883072194630_5224332784705471798_nIt’s late at night, and you’re driving home from one of those wedding gigs. The once-in-a-lifetime, Top Ten Faves kind. The couple was too cute to be true, the night was full of surprises, and the entire crowd adored you. Your costume and dancing were on point and at least two high-end DSLR’s were pointed at you to capture it all. And an hour after you took your bow, you’re reeling with adrenaline and excitement; glistening with sweat and glitter. Tired yet floating on cloud nine.

You pull off to the nearest exit to grab some late-night grub and bask in the millions of reasons why you love your job. (But first? Let me take a selfie).

Belly dance also …

“Don’t Make Me Go to Boca!” And Other Musings on Dance-Life Balance

BocaFeetSee that picture on the left? That was me this past weekend. Those were my toes in the sand. And the picture doesn’t do that water a justice.

I got to spend a perfect Sunday afternoon at Spanish River Beach in Boca Raton. I had no agenda, other than to collect coral and shells, and make it back to my boyfriend’s convention gig in time for a surprise photo shoot that his generous photographer friends Greg, Gary and Art had planned for me.
Let me fill you in on a little secret: I nearly had to be dragged there, kicking and screaming.

When my other half asked me to come to Boca for a convention that he was shooting, I …

Gratitude.

Carrara dances with beautiful bride Sasha at the Rosen Plaza Hotel, for Wish Upon a WeddingWell, it’s Stuff-Your-Face-With-Turkey-Day, and like many, I woke up with an attitude of gratitude.

But I always struggle to write Thanksgiving posts because, like jellied, store-bought cranberry sauce, they feel so cloying, and so canned. It should go without saying that I’m thankful for every day that my feet touch the ground. That I live in a free country. That I have a roof over my head, food in my belly, a boyfriend who goes along with my Evil Plans and reels me back in when I get out of control, and friends and family who love me, even when times get tough and when I feel like giving up.

There’s one big blessing in my life that I sometimes …

On “Overnight Success” and the Road Less Traveled

In my 7 years of performing professionally, I’ve been called a lot of things. Wedding expert. Life of the Party. Camera Wh*re. Bellydance Police and Killer of Dreams.

“Overnight Success” is one I hear a lot lately.

If I had a penny for every question a dancer has asked me about my “overnight success” in the wedding industry, I’d have enough to get a clue and start teaching seminars on the topic.

That is, if I had anything to teach, other than a series of vague, Socratic questions and tutorials on how to take better selfies and pug pics.

The concept of overnight success has always felt like a bit of a cop-out to me. While I can appreciate this …

On Dancing Like a Lady (Notes from Miss Carrara’s Sparkle Charm School)

The Fabulous Samia Gamal Have you ever felt like you were born in the wrong era? I tend to be an old soul when it comes to a lot of my values and the things I find beautiful in art and dance. I love watching vintage belly dance clips, collect old handmade bra and belt sets, and often feel nostalgic for eras way before my time.

One “Old World” idea that’s become increasingly attractive to me is the idea of being a lady. Being classy. Channeling femininity through sweetness and style. Yesterday, I found myself looking through some of my boyfriend’s books on pinup art, and what struck me in the old Elvgren paintings was that even the most popular sex symbols of the …