Am I doing this right?

It’s been so long I don’t even know how to work WordPress anymore. After taking a long Hiatus from writing I’m sitting here putting my fingers to the keyboard for the first time in a long long time faced with the question of why. Why did I stop doing this for so long? Did I just get too busy? Did I think that I wasn’t good enough? Maybe I just got self conscious that no one was reading them or that the people who were reading them didn’t like them? As I toss these questions around in my mind, I’m having trouble coming to a conclusion. I went back and took a look at the last entry I made (back in July might I add) and I even wrote in the intro that this was a half-assed blog post done only so that I could say that I kept my New Years Resolution of writing every month. How sad. I was already checked out at that point. Sure I posted something and technically stayed true to my goal for the year but the heart and intention behind it was missing. What was I trying to prove and who to? Myself?

Here’s the thing. I tend to be offput by things that everyone else is doing. Why I stopped keeping up with my blog is the same reason why I *still* haven’t listened to that new Ariana song. And at this point, I am actively AVOIDING ‘thank u, next.’ Like it was playing in the background of someone’s Instagram story and I quickly exited out of the app. It’s ridiculous, really. But it’s the truth. So when I scroll through Instagram stories and everyone is like “Swipe up to read my blog post on how I scrubbed weird shit off my tongue this morning!!!” Or “Link is in my bio for a video of my burping the alphabet!!” I started thinking why the HELL are we so preoccupied with other peoples’ lives?! And that’s when I realized my intention for writing wasn’t what it used to be. It didn’t feel good anymore.

I live in LA. Where nearly everyone is seeking notoriety, validation or in some way or another, fame. The same things that drive me absolutely bananas about LA are the same reasons why I moved here. To be selfish. To ~explore myself~. To follow my dreams. Somewhere between writing about whatever I wanted and writing what I thought everyone else wanted to hear is where I lost the part of writing that’s always been so therapeutic to me. I swear to you (and if you know me you know this is true) I am so much better at just letting my hands do the talking (wink wink that sounded a lot more sexual that I intended). All joking aside though. I sometimes struggle to get myself to say what I mean for fear of the person on the other end of the conversation misunderstanding or passing some sort of judgement, but when I just sit down, turn my brain off and let my fingers type or hand write – boom. There it is.

So, I’m not coming back here to make some sort of goal to write weekly, or even monthly. But what I am here to do is start writing more. Not because I’m trying to become some sort of blogger, or because I think you give a shit about my morning routine or which farmers market I frequent, but because I freaking love to write. And I like to write in the style that I do, about the topics that come to my head whether they fit into some sort of niche or not. Because it makes me feel good to communicate in a way that doesn’t involve me overthinking. Quite honestly, writing is pretty much the only thing I do in my life that allows me to overcome my chronic overthinking. Not even dance gives me that sort of freedom- which is crazy for me to even process. Why the f would I ever let what everyone else is doing or thinking take that freedom away from me?

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LIT SHIT: May

A half-assed and extremely delayed version awaits you below.

REUNITED. Lexie, one of my best friends from college, moved in with me for about 2 and a half weeks and damn did we make up for lost time or what? We made a list of approximately one million things we wanted to do this summer, went to Circle Bar in Santa Monica on a Monday, rearranged my entire apartment, built a bed, bought some plants, got kicked out of a club, took a cycling class and potatoed by the pool a few too many times.

BEACHED. For some reason every time I have a day off work, it is extremely cloudy and overcast in LA. That being said, my first trip to Malibu of the year was….chilly. Somehow I managed to still get a little burnt and spend 5 hours there regardless. I also almost got washed away with the tide, which then led me to climb onto a rock (my savior) and watch the ocean for probably an hour before nabbing a table for one at Malibu Farm. I had been working a ton and was really starting to feel it, so this day was pretty much exactly what I needed.

HAPPY PLACE. One of the many fun parts of being part of  Clippers Spirit are all of the fun stuff we get to do for appearances. This past month we got to go to a touring exhibit called Happy Place- which for everyone else except for me is Instagram heaven. Why do I not have the same feelings about it? Probably because these were some of the shots I ended up with.

READ. Unf*ck Yourself by Gary John Bishop. This book is one of the quickest reads ever. Big font and easily structured sentences. In terms of self help books, I think the content is great. The message is clear and, like I said, it’s delivered in a pretty uncomplicated way.  But that being said, it’s not anything that can’t be found in any other book of this genre. Something that did stick with me though was a chapter about uncertainty. As I have said time and time again, there is nothing I hate more than not being good at something or not being sure that something is going to go the way I want it to. Bishop spent a whole chapter about this and stressed that growth can only come from uncertainty. #YouRight

CLOSED A CHAPTER. Season 1 on Clippers Spirit is officially in the books! We celebrated with a dinner at Eat. Drink. Americano. As we sat together for the last time as a team, I couldn’t stop thinking about how wild it is that I didn’t know any of these women just 10 months ago and now I can’t imagine my life in LA without them. Crazy to think that it’s almost been a year but auditions are already next month. If you’re interested in auditioning check out some helpful hints riiiiiiiight here.

BUILT A TABLE. Yeah I won’t go into this more because I’ve already gabbed about it on pretty much every form of social media….except Twitter. Which I’ll probably do right now.

FabFitFun. My friend Hannah was asked to film a workout for FabFitFun TV and recruited a few of us to be her counterparts. AKA working out on camera. AKA with a smile on your face. AKA pretending we aren’t near as sweaty or as in pain as we actually are. AKA !!!!!! Our call time was 7 am in West Hollywood, which for me means about half an hour in the car. So that’s 6:30 leave time which meant a 5:45 wake up time. Gulp. I planned to be powered by coffee that morning (bulletproof to be exact) but life had other plans. Somewhere in the process of blending my brain octane, collagen, maca and coffee mix, the pressure inside my Nutribullet was apparently just way too much to contain and when I tried to open it it was like a volcanic explosion of scalding hot coffee all over my kitchen, body and dignity.

CINESPIA. Have you ever watched a movie outside with a bunch of strangers in the middle of a cemetery? No? At the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, they do movie screenings every weekend. You pack a picnic full of drinks, food and definitely blankets (it gets freaking cold), stake out a spot and watch the film drive-in style. Lexie and I snagged the tickets from our friend Angelica (who is dating my old roommate Jordan). They were supposed to go together on a date but Lex and I went instead which was funny cause we were about the only people there not actually on a date. No, of course we didn’t notice all the couples literally EVERYWHERE what do you mean????? Anyway, we saw one of my all time favorites ‘Almost Famous’ over the course of about 6 wine spritzers and half a million Siete grain free chips.

DOUBLED DOWNED. For some reason I thought it would be a good idea to do Barry’s 2 times in a span of 24 hours. Why? Because I get overzealous at 2 am when I can’t sleep and then find myself signing myself up for classes later in the week to punish myself. I sandwiched these two classes with 8 hour work days and was practically crawling on the ground at work, but hey. Aside from the extreme soreness and slight delirium, I felt pretty accomplished.

WATCHED. The Beatles LOVE show in Vegas with one of my best friends, Grant. Holy Moly it was incredible and pretty indescribable other than damn, the Beatles must have been on a lot of drugs.

The Iceberg Effect: more than just an excuse to reference Titanic

Dear diary,

I am a perfectionist.

Love,

Holly

I remember being about 8 years old and auditioning for a role in our community theater’s production of Sleeping Beauty. Typically the younger kids get cast as a something minor whose only purpose is the be cute and make the parents say “awwww”. Nope, not me. Not my jam. I went into the audition wearing something I thought Princess Aurora herself would wear. I wanted a part in the musical but not as some lame side character. I wanted to be the freaking princess. The lead role. Which is almost ALWAYS someone over the age of 15. Did I care? No. If I was going to audition, I was going to land the biggest part in the entire production. Anything less was failure.

Fast forward 3 hours to me having an absolute hysteric meltdown in my room. Like HYSTERIC.

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Pretty accurate TBH

My mom came in with a cold wash cloth to put over my eyes to try to help calm me down but literally nothing would work. Of course, my parents had a big discussion with me to try to explain the directors purpose for casting who he did and that I’ll get the next one. But I didn’t want the next one and I didn’t understand why I wasn’t selected.

Ever since I can remember I have obsessed over things being perfect or being the best at whatever I do (which, hello, that is the best way to set yourself up for failure).

Keeping this in mind, fast forward 14 years and I’m pursuing a career in dance and entertainment. In LA. The Mecca of perfectionism. And as much as I wish I could say I’ve completely shaken that 8-year-old version of myself, I can’t. She is still very much a part of me and, in some ways, she’s 100 times louder. What I can say, is that I’ve learned (and am constantly learning) how to deal with her.

I really believe that mindset is everything and that there is a way to put a positive spin on most things we face in life. Learning how to see the strength at the other end of your weakness is a hard thing to do, but allows for self growth rather than a fun little spiral of self deprecation. And we all know I love self-deprecating humor. For me, I think being a perfectionist has a lot of positive qualities. I am meticulous about my work. I walk in to any new task or opportunity ready to give 110%. My drive to be the best is so loud it almost overwhelms me. Which brings me to the flip side. I get in my head when I’m out of my comfort zone. I spiral about all of the other things I’m ‘inadequate’ at when one thing goes wrong. I have a hard time taking no for an answer. I have an intense fear of looking stupid and I hold myself back from opportunities if I don’t think I know what I’m doing….even if it’s just mentally. But here’s the cool thing- I’m aware of all this.

When I walk into an audition, I never know how I’m going to feel. There are days when I enter the room with my head held high, loving what I’m wearing, the way I look and the way I’m dancing. Those are the days that I walk out of the audition feeling amazing whether I was cut first round or stayed until the end. But there are also times when I defeat myself before I even take off my jacket to warm up. When I’m comparing myself to every other girl in there. Everyone picking up the choreography faster than me, everyone who knows the casting director already, everyone who has better hair or a better outfit…a better body…it’s hard not to. In an industry of constantly being told no with no with zero feedback or reason given, you find yourself always searching for the why behind the no. Why did it turn out this way? Oh it’s gotta be because my hair wasn’t long enough. I should have hit the gym more. I’m not hip hop enough. I wish I was taller. Tanner. Skinner. Prettier. Better. Spiral spiral spiral spiral.

It’s a lot. But like I said, I am aware of it. I’m able to see past the now and look ahead totumblr_p5ehleSHXG1qclnf1o5_r1_250 the future…to know that that particular ‘no’ is a ‘yes’ somewhere else. And that, my friends, is key. I always like to refer to this as the iceberg effect (partially because I love Titanic and am always looking for ways to reference it in my day-to-day life).
Let me explain. When you look at an iceberg (or at least a photo of one cause I don’t know how many people are hopping on ships to go iceberg hunting), you see a little triangle of ice sticking up above the water. Think of that as the now. The parking ticket you got 541866180yesterday, the guy who is just not that into you, the gig you got turned down for, the deal you didn’t close…But what you can’t see is all the stuff that’s coming your way or the why behind it. The stuff that’s not right in front of your face but is underneath all of the day to day stress, working it’s way into your life as it’s meant to be. The good stuff. I really do believe that coincidence isn’t real and that everything happens for a reason (how many times have you heard that?). But it’s true.

Persistence is everything and perfectionism can be a major deterrent in keeping a positive mindset, especially in the entertainment industry that focuses so much on the outward appearance, but use it to your advantage. Flip your mindset and learn how to find the strength within your so-called weakness. I promise your fate with the iceberg will be a hell of a lot better than Jack’s.

 

My teenage bedroom was inspired by Paris Hilton

Sometimes I feel like I live in an episode of the suite Life of Zack and Cody (shout out Cody, I still love you) because my apartment complex is extremely hotel vibey. Nice lobby with giant mirrors, cool couches, a TV bigger than my car and someone who works security at the front desk…Mr. Mosby, if you will….

tumblr_nwk2gqyVEy1upoajro8_250Zack and Cody aside (sorry Sprouse twins)- can we please address the glow up that is my living situation???? Do I need to give you a lesson regarding the evolution of my bed situation? Did you say yes? I don’t really care either way cause I’m about to. You should have seen that coming.

2008- I had a SUUUUUPER sick loft bed with a desk underneath it for the longest time. I thought I was the absolute coolest human in the entire world. My parents let me have the master bedroom at our old place in Pella, and that thing was MASSIVE. It was supposed to be two bedrooms but the builders knocked out the wall between them because everyone who toured the home bitched about how there wasn’t a master bedroom. Viola! The birth of a master-master bedroom. We painted the walls a mix of purple, pink and green, a color scheme I had decided on based off of a dress Paris Hilton wore (WHICH I FOR THE LIFE OF ME CANNOT FIND ANYWHERE ON THE INTERNET). Yes, I was a big fan and you are lying if you think “Stars are Blind” isn’t an absolute bop.

Anyway. I remember getting sent to my room a time or two (or more than that) and just being so jazzed cause my tween brain loved my room. So much room for cartwheels and to throw clothes all over the place! I even had a futon in one corner and like 3 of those weird circle foldy chairs that used to be a thing.

2012- By this time I was even cooler and super sad on Twitter cause I thought I was in love with this guy that I was too scared to hang out with in person but we texted all the time and they were pretty long messages most of the time and so that sounded like a relationship to me!!! I was SUPER mature and #overit (in terms of the pink walls not the guy, cause that was a thing for far too long). I decided to paint it brown like my soul!!!! Actually, no. That’s not why. I started shopping at Anthropologie and thought the BoHo life and style was pretty dang cool and super opposite of what I had been up until that point. And that was pretty cool to me. I was really into drawing and painting so on the parts of the wall that were left tan, I painted abstract flowers all over. I remember ditching plans with friends so that I could stay home and keep painting. This is starting to sound slightly more like the me I know. We even put in hard wood floors which I completely forgot about until just now. Hands down the coolest part about my room was the vintage furniture that was in it. My parents had inherited a bunch of my grandmas old stuff from dressers, to chairs and even a lamp. IMG_4266

Then there was the bed. I had ditched the desk and the loft and traded it in for this guy. Take a look at the purple lamp in the background (and my dogs!!!!!). That thing was about the only part of the Paris Hilton room that stuck around.

2013- Fast forward to college and I have now regressed back to a loft with a desk beneath it. And this time the mattress wasn’t a full, it was a twin. Whomp whaaaa. Funny how that works. My roommate was from China and one of her first times being in the USA was to move in with me. So while I had dreamed of color coordinating with my college roommate, that just was plain and simple not a thing. We had a sink in our dorm room and enough space to literally walk from our beds to the door and that’s about it. Definitely less than ideal, but I was barely ever there between dance team, school and my sorority. In fact, pretty much the only time I was there was when I skipped class…..which was like only a fewwww times.

 

2014- And the regression continues!!!!! I moved into Kappa with a roommate I literally did not know from Adam (who might I add turned out to be one of my favorite people and you can tell in the photo to the right that she feels the same way).  IMG_4055Our room was the size of a shoebox and I missed the fist 2 weeks of sophomore year because I had strep throat so I didn’t even get to meet Erin (my roommate) during move in, my parents did instead. Nice!!! I remember this living arrangement being so funny cause I would have to wake up so early for dance team shit and spray hairspray all over the place while simultaneously eating breakfast and also getting dress while trying to head out the door and not be late. Yes, it was typically as frantic as it sounds. Weirdest part of our room: I had no where to put my National Geographic brand suitcases so they became my bedside table and I thought I was super artsy and resourceful. Cringe. Erin if you’re reading this, I love you forever for putting up with me in our little shoebox room.

2015- FINALLY. My own apartment with my own room. I bought a bunch of frames, wall lights and a bedspread from Urban and that started my obsession with their home line. I actually still have a lot of that stuff in my apartment currently. Except for now the frames aren’t blank. My friends would always make fun of me in college cause I literally never put photos in them. They stayed how they look in this photo for pretty much the whole year. Not because I didn’t have any pictures with friends to fill the frame with…I totally had friends. Really. Another piece of this room that came with me was my grandmas dresser and desk (which were all but falling apart).

 

My favorite thing about having my own room in college: being able to be an actual hermit when I wanted to. Which was hard because I lived right downtown Iowa City aka where all the bars are aka where I ALWAYS had a friend in some circle or another who was trying to get me to partaaaaaaay. Which was also a fun part of living over there.

2016- The couch phase. So my parents moved to Hampton, Iowa, at the beginning of my sophomore year of college so not having an actual room never really bugged me because I lived in Iowa City for a pretty much both summers because I was there so much. But once I moved back home after finishing up my degree after my junior year, aside from the guest room, I didn’t really have a place that felt like mine. I didn’t know any one in Hampton and I knew it was a temporary ‘home’ so I didn’t really care to take the time to go on a friend hunt. Not that I have to hunt to find friends, geez. But yeah, I spent pretty much every day living there figuring out how I could get to California and what my living situation would be. As to why I crashed on the couch instead of the guest room more often than not, I have absolutely no idea. I think cause my mom didn’t like it and that was literally the only way I could rebel in Hampton. That sounds about right.

2017- Hello twin bed, nice to see you again!!! NOT. As I’m sure all of you know by now, I had the pleasure of sharing another small room with another human. Kelly and I had two twin beds shoved into that little space like an L. Which is kind of what we took when it came to personal space. For us though, it worked. Seriously don’t think there are too many people out there in this world that I could stand to do #TwinBedz with. But OUCHmy back was not in great shape after being able to move a full 0% when I slept in that thing. I am a MOVER in my sleep. Or at least I used to be before I was confined to a twin bed. Honestly, I’m surprised I never fell off any of the lofts or small beds. Truly a miracle.

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Moving on. Needless to say, I was ready to have my own space from kitchen to bathroom to bedroom by the time our lease was up. The decision was pretty easy since two of my current roommates were leaving LA and the other one was a guy who had fallen in love with our neighbor across the street. And then there was one, ME!!! So I started looking around for a studio apartment which brings me to the current situation……

2018- I’m extremely particular about a few things: what I’m about to eat, what my Instagram caption is going to be, who is going to be stuck with me for the rest of my life and the space I spend most of my time in. Which is why I landed myself in the complex that I’m in right now. It feels good to live in a place that I’m proud to call home and isn’t much shy from my dream apartment. Well yeah, was all fun and games until the movers packed up all my shit from my old place , and just stuck it in the new place. Which made it feel less…new. I had my tiny little twin bed in the corner and a bunch of boxes full of kitchen stuff for a while. Then I picked up a couch, then a chair, and now I have officially said goodbye (also good riddance) to my twin, replaced it with a queen and GOT A MF TABLE that I could marry if that was legal. Woof did that escalate quickly or what?

I’ve had a lot of people ask me about the mattress and the table so I’m just gonna link to everything here.

  • TUFT AND NEEDLE Apparently this brand is all over the internet?? I hadn’t heard of it until someone recommended it to me at work. But I’m not sure if its because I was coming from a hard twin bed mattress to a queen ($585) or if this one is actually a cloud but DAMN. It feels so much like a hotel bed that I had a hard time figuring out where I was the first few times I woke up on it….that might be more of a me problem though. Either way, I’m sleeping so much better and have space to not be curled up like a freaking dog in a kennel the entire night. I also threw in the pillow cause I have never spent more than $15 on a pillow and it was about damn time. No complaints there either.

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  • URBAN OUTFITTERS haul.
    • Chair– Which I assembled myself, thank you very much.IMG_7438
    • Couch– It folds out into a little pull out bed. It’s pretty small but it’s perfect for my place and I think it was in the ballpark of $250 when I got it.
    • Frames- Still going strong from my college days!
    • IMG_3470Key hanger– Which says Late AF because well….
    • Table– ISN’T SHE LOVELYYYYYY. Pretty proud of this one. Especially since I built it in under 2 hours. I’ve had my eye on it for so long and it was finally 20% ($300ish) off so I pulled le trigger. My one complaint is that a part of it came broken. There are two hanging racks underneath the table that you can store the stools in. BUT of course the screws that had been drilled into the table (the only part of it that came put together) were broken and the hanging things were unattached. Something I chose to ignore for the time being. I also don’t have a drill to fix it with so if you know a guy hmu.

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  • AMAZON came all the way through with my Duvet insert ($25) and bed frame. I found a whole bunch at Urban but they were all at least $500. I can’t tell you how many times I had it in my cart and then took it out again, but I decided since it’s not really the focal point of my bedroom, it’s not really necessary to get a super elaborate one. Plus I spent about $650 on my mattress and pillow so I gotta find the balance somewhere.

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And then I got two pet “dogs” at Trader Joe’s named Spot and Rover (pictured) and am extremely content with this place. I say “dogs” because I have puppy fever SO bad and I thought buying plants would help. And wine. I also bought wine. Obviously I still have a list of about 25 other things I want to throw in my bachelorette pad at some point but for now, it’s good. Six months in and it finally feels like me. Which, as you can see, the definition of me has definitely changed over the years. And thank god cause I really would have to go on a friend hunt if I still had Paris Hilton walls.

 

NBA FAQ HMU ROFL- Auditioning for a pro team?

I’m not quite sure how it’s already time to end my rookie season with the Clippers, but it officially came to a close this past week at our end of the year dinner. It feels like I just got the news about making the team and now, in what seems like the blink of an eye, next season’s auditions are about two months away. I spent the last several months learning choreography, performing at Staples, attending various appearances and events, and most importantly building a team that now feels like family and now it’s just about time do do it again.

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I’ve had a lot of people reach out to me and ask about auditioning for a professional team whether it be Clippers specifically or just in general. Did I like it? Would I recommend it? Am I doing it again? What’s the time commitment like? How important is it to be in shape? What are auditions like? The list goes on and on. And believe me, I get it. I remember after I decided to audition last year, I had so many questions and truly had zero clue what I was getting myself into. Now that I’ve got a season under my belt, I hope I can help at least a few people who are interested in auditioning. I’m gonna break it down question by question. And as always- reach out if I’m missing something.

Q. When are tryouts?

A. This year, auditions are taking place on July 22nd. It doesn’t say on the website, but typically finals are the following day. Unlike other teams and many NFL teams, the process is only two days long and very to the point consisting of a technique round, combination round, interview and final combination round. You will learn two dances during the course of the audition.

Q. Are there pre-tryout clinics?

A. Yes, there are two and I highly highly recommend going to at least one of the. This summer they are June 9 and July 7 and its only $40 to attend. These clinics are a great way to get yourself in front of the coach, captains and potential teammates. Not only that, but it’s a great way to make sure this is the squad for you. I truly believe that there is a pro dance team out there for everyone. Each one is ran differently and has style of dance that is unique to them. At the end of the day, it’s not only the judges selecting you to be apart of the team, you are also choosing them. They want dedicated dancers and trust me when I say it’s so much easier to put in that commitment when you genuinely love the program you are apart of.

These clinics are also a good call because more likely than not, you will see some of the elements you learn during these two dates in the actual audition.

Q. What is the audition process like?

A. I kind of already touched on this a bit, but like I said, it’s two days long. You show up the first day with your headshot and resume and, if I remember right, there’s an application process you go through online beforehand. You start with a warm up and then move to the technique round where a short across the floor combo is taught. After you showcase your across the floor technique (I think there was a double, a calypso and maybe a fan kick), either the coach or last years captains will tell you either “thank you” or “please stay.” Should you move on to the next round, you learn a combination (most often one of last years routines) and perform it in groups of 5 or so. Then they make the cut for finals. I remember this part being agonizing. They announce the dancers one by one. Hello, anxiety. The second day starts with an interview. It’s not a game day quiz of any sort. It’s more of a get to know you. And much like the rest of the process, it’s short, sweet and to the point. After that, they bring in a guest choreographer (last year it was Kevin Maher) to teach the final audition routine. In the studio, and front of a panel of judges, you perform one last time with two other hopefuls.

Q. What should I wear?

A. This for me is always more stressful than it should be. For a lot of professional teams, they require tights, briefs, and a rhinestone bra of sorts. This is where Clippers is a bit different. Absolutely no tights or briefs. Our style is athletic. What that means is no tights, shorts instead of briefs and a sports bra top of sorts. I am always a fan of doing a little something to make yourself stand out whether that be a funky sports bra or colored lipstick. I would recommend wearing pretty much the same thing to finals that you wore the day before. That way it’s easier to recognize who you are amongst all of the dancers (last year there were over 500 who participated in the first round). Las year I wore the same thing but added a cropped camo sweatshirt over the top.

Q. How important is fitness?

A.  Stamina is definitely a huge factor and something they look for when selecting the team. I wish I knew how many miles I run on average during game day. And no, I don’t mean as a pre-game workout. We literally are in the tunnels of Staples Center running around from tunnel to tunnel to dressing room to quick change to the court to do a full length routine and then three hot songs back to back. Not only that, but the uniforms can be nearly microscopic as well. There is not one body type you should be, though so definitely don’t let this stress you out. What’s most important is confidence. That goes a long way. You want to feel proud and comfortable standing on the court in your uniforms.

Q. What’s the time commitment like?

A. We rehearse at least 2 days a week for three hours. When the season gets going, it can get pretty crazy between multiple game day weeks, appearances and extra rehearsals.

Q. Does it pay well?

A. There is potential to make anywhere from $15-$125 an hour.

Q. What was the hardest challenge you faced?

A. Anyone who has ever been on a college dance team will relate to this, but I think the hardest part is just being new. You learn routines that the veterans already know, try to figure out the layout of game day, staples center, how to manage your time, stay fit and make it to appearances on time. It’s a lot. But everyone is there to help and are more than willing to do so. They were in your shoes once too.

Q. What was your favorite part?

A. Specifically this season I would say performing with Super Duper Kyle. Since it’s an LA team, there is a lot of opportunity to perform with some pretty cool artists. All Star weekend was also a once in a lifetime experience. It was a lot of hours and hard work, but it was so cool to be on that stage.

Q. How is it being on a team with 19 other women?

A. Honestly, incredible. I gotta say, I was pretty nervous when I first joined the team. It’s scary going into something not knowing the people you’re going to be spending all that time with. This team of women was truly special. We all clicked so well and I can honestly say that we were all meant to be put in each others lives. I’ve been so thankful to have gained 19 new incredible friends who have truly become family.

For anyone on the fence about auditioning, do it. It’s an incredible feeling to be getting paid for something you genuinely love. Yes, it gets overwhelming and stressful at times but the ups far outweigh the downs. Clippers is the perfect blend between industry and dance team. The choreographers, artists, and leadership team you’re exposed to are great tools and resources that are at your disposal.

 

LIT SHIT: April

Happy Siete De Mayo, here’s a blog post that should have been posted a week ago!!!I have been as good as MIA for the past month. Between a trip home, Clippers finishing up and working about twice as much as I had been, I’ve let this little guy fall by the wayside, blinked my eyes and April was gone. Sitting here trying to write this I  literally had to grab my planner and look back on the month to see what I had even done these past four weeks…besides run from one thing to the next. Busy or not- there were definitely some great moments in April so I’ll catch you up on a few of my favorites.

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Did wedding things. I’m not sure if you know this or not, but my BEST FRIEND IS GETTING MARRIED. Almost can’t wrap my brain around it and even more so can’t believe it’s only 4 months away. When I was in Iowa at the end of March, I finally got to spend some time with her. India is a massage therapist in Pella (HIT HER UP IF YOUR IN THE AREA)- so that meant a 90 minute massage for me, which she absolutely crushed. Post massage, she surprised me with the cutest basket of goodies and a card asking me to be one of her bridesmaids…well that’s what she told me the card said. I didn’t read it until I was on the airplane heading home because I knew I would cry. I went straight from opening the basket to trying on bridesmaid stuff so that got real pretty quick.

Road Tripped. To Coachella Valley with one of my Clippers teammates, Aleya. We made a day of it between pit stops, story telling and PLENTY of snacks. I fricken love road trips. Especially in California. There is so much to see and so many different types of places you can see after just getting in the car for a few hours. I mean you can hit the mountains and ski or be at the beach in a matter of a few miles. California is great that way.

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Coffeed. At Go Gettem Tiger. My coffee shop find of the month. Kind of stumbled onto it by accident because I misread my work schedule and ended up being in the area too early. This is something I tend to frequently do. Their service is fantastic and the ambience is even better. I got their almond macadamia milk latte, which they serve in a cute little mason jar.

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Got Nailed. At Nail Garden on USC’s campus. This was a last minute, panicked decision. Basically I was headed to Coachella and had tried to make a nail appointment at 4 different places, 2 of which  I drove out of my way to and they proceeded to tell me there wasn’t an appointment scheduled for me….which took all of me to remain calm, cool and collected. So here I was, the day I was supposed to leave with 3 fake nails missing and another 2 trying to fall off- I am hell on nails. I called the only place that was open at 9 am and scheduled appointment. First of all, USC’s campus is insanely beautiful and I got lost trying to find the place so it was fun to wander around a bit. A few hours later I left with a fresh set of nails that made me realize the places I had been going weren’t even close to up to Nail Garden’s standard. I paid a little bit more, but definitely a place you should check out!

Coachella. Somehow I went from never wanting to hear the words tent, wristband, alcohol, Coachella or Instagram to wanting to get my booty in my KIA Sorrento, drive to Indio as fast as I can for round two. I hate this about myself. This weekend I suffered from a serious case of fomo and after having friends who literally snuck into the festival, I’m confident that I could have done the same. Buuuuut alas, duty called and instead, I strapped myself into a straightjacket of responsibility…no matter how miserable it was.

I am proud to announce that aside from a cough, I have finally returned to my normal state!!! It took me almost a week. Coachella really takes it out of you, let me tell ya. You can buy as many vitamins, pound countless wellness shots, perform as many weird crystal rituals and drink as much water as you want- you’re still gonna feel it afterwards. Especially if you camp. And ya girl camped. For the first time ever. Just take a second to picture me in a tent………yeah it’s probably worse than the image you have in your head.

For starters, I clicked all of my plans into place literally the day before. I literally walked into the locker room at Staples with a big ole SOS flag and my teammates pulled all the way through from outfits to a place to stay. I borrowed a tent and sleeping pad (which much to my surprise is NOT the same thing as an air mattress), scored a ride, and even copped a few outfit options. Now I’m not telling you that procrastination is a good thing, but I am saying it all works itself out nine times out of ten. And always leaves you with some interesting stories.

  1. My tent was big enough to house the Duggars. Seriously. Once I got to the campsite, we took it out of the bag to set up by where they had set up the picnic table and we quickly realized that unless we put the table inside my tent, that was not happening. By the grace of God, there happened to be an empty camping slot right next to the 6 that my group had reserved. So I spent the entire weekend with my own camping site space, in a tent that was the epitome of me having a studio apartment.
  2. I had no EZ up. Which means no shade. Which means I went to sleep in 16 layers and woke up because I was drowning in sweat. Good morning desert sun!!!
  3. I forgot a towel. Which makes communal showers fun!
  4. The boys in the campsite adjacent from my tent were definitely 18 and spent each night getting blacked out, bumping into my tent and talking about how much trouble they would be in if their dads knew. They are probably still hungover
  5. I made it to morning yoga each morning….but the first day I grabbed my water bottle full of vodka on accident. Thankfully I didn’t go for a sip until I was trying to talk to the instructor afterwards. So I just held it in my mouth and communicated in sign language until waving goodbye and running to the nearing garbage can to spit it out.

If you know me you are not surprised by any of these. Now let me tell ya about some of the absolute best moments and products that helped me survive the desert life.

  1. LANY. 3:45 pm and you better believe I was pushing my way to the front.
  2. The Weeknd was honestly my second favorite set of the entire weekend. He played his new stuff (which I’ve since gotten into) but most importantly he played most of the good ones from Trilogy. I literally went psycho for The Morning. Hair whips and all.
  3. Beyonce. Because it was Beyonce and I’m sure you’ve already read/seen all about her performance.
  4. Yodel boy. I stumbled onto a set of some artist I didn’t even know and out came yodel boy. In the flesh.
  5. Miguel. That man can SING. Not to mention I ran into two of my Clippers friends while walking to his set. Out of all the people that were there.
  6. Cardi B was so stinkin’ fun. We stood kind of in the back so there was plenty of room to dance.
  7. My friends Irene and Leah got into Coachella because they told the guard it was Irene’s birthday at midnight. Which was true. But what was even crazier was that in a land where cell service is not a thing, we found each other within 5 minutes of them getting inside the gate. Meant to be.
  8. I got to watch Super Duper Kyle with one of my Clippers teammates Kylie. This was cool cause we had danced with him earlier in the season so it was fun to see him up there and definitely motivating.
  9. Silent Disco. I’ve always wanted to go to one of these. If you don’t know, it’s exactly what it sounds like. Everyone outs on headphones and that’s how you hear the music. So everyone is like screaming the lyrics and if you take off your headphones, all you can hear is the people singing. It must look so strange to people that are just walking by and not participating. Anyway- they had this on the campsite throughout the night so for a lot of people it was their last stop after all the concerts and sets had ended.
  10. Ya girl made it to outdoor yoga every single morning. I have no idea how.
  11. THE FOOD STANDS. Thank you Clover and Sage for being my healthy food havens during the weekend.
  12. RX bars got me THROUGH
  13. Not your mothers dry shampoo. Thank you for taming my unwashed dreadlocks during this weekend.
  14. And shoutout to my Urban Outfitters hat for covering my hair the last day because dry shampoo can only go so far you guys.

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Bontanica. Shoutout Tori for finding this place. It’s the cutest little restaurant over in Silverlake (which I have made it a point to explore more). We ordered a bunch of apps including sun chokes, beets, some bread thing that I can’t eat, cod and last but not least Japanese sweet potatoes. MMMMM. I freaking love sweet potatoes. Not to mention the interior of that place is basically the spitting image of what I dream of my place looking like.

HUM Flatter Me. We sell these at my work in our Detox market stand and I finally pulled the trigger on trying them. Since getting more in tune with my body and eating habits, I’ve cut a lot of things out that I’ve realized don’t necessarily work for me in terms of how they make me feel- from stomach aches to body swelling and puffiness. These little guys are an all organic digestive enzyme blend that you take before you eat to prevent bloating and aid in digestion. I definitely recommend giving them a try. HUM has a lot of other really great products too that help with sleep, dark under eye circles, skin, hair and even more.

Roommates. LEXIE MOVED IN WITH ME FOR 2.5 WEEKS. Just after I recovered from Coachella, Lexie finally made the move to LA. It’s been so fun to have her around and I’m so proud of her for actually taking the leap and saying peace out to Iowa. We have made an extremely long Summer bucket list so if you have any suggestions of places to go, things to do or food to eat in California, LET US KNOW.

 

 

 

LIT SHIT: March

SPRING HAS SPRUNG. And yet, here I sit in the middle of Snowstormville, IA, typing away at the coffee shop I used to work at. Hello nostalgia! Also hello snow, what the f are you. Seriously. It feels like the North Pole here. I must say I’m pumped to be wearing my favorite turtle neck today though. God, I love a good turtle neck.

Moving on. We made it through another month and as per me swearing I’m going to start holding myself accountable, that means I gotta do one of this weird review things to talk about shit that is lit…or at least I think it is. Can I get a drum roll? Or at least pretend you’re even a little bit excited to read these.

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RELAXED. The Now in Silverlake. First of all, I had never been to Silverlake, which is apparently the hipster capital of Los Angeles. Now I’m by no means calling myself a ‘hipster’ but…..how the hell had I made it that long without exploring over there??? I also wore fake wire rimmed glasses so I could blend in with the hipster-folk. So this little boutique spa is aesthetically crafted by the Instagram and zen gods. It’s beautiful. All white walls, plants everywhere, minimalist design and not to mention that it smells incredible. As I said in one of my previous posts, I made the goal to take time to do one self-love-esque activity each week. This was my pick for week one of March. I got a 60 minute deep tissue massage and dammmmn did ya girl have some KNOTS. The Now really knows how to set the mood.

They gave me some water and led me into this heated room with swinging benches and faux fur blankets and once my masseuse was ready, I followed her back into this long hallway with an extremely high ceiling riddled with low-lit lanterns hanging ever-so-perfectly. I basically had to shackle my hands so that I didn’t grab my phone and take photos of it all for the gram. I was trying to zone completely in for once. I left feeling great and had even managed to snag a few photos of the waiting area while I made friends with the two chicks at the front desk on my way out. Bottom line, if you haven’t checked out The Now, do it. They have locations all over LA including West Hollywood and also Studio City but you can check out the other ones on their website I linked above!

REFLECTED. Wisdom Tree. Alright so let me start by saying, THIS HIKE IS HARD. Especially for people who are unapologetically clumsy in nature (me). I struggled so hard to find my footing through the bouldery inclines and sharp drop offs, but hey I lived to tell the tale. It probably didn’t help at all that I came to meet Carsyn at the base of the trail directly from finishing booty day at Barry’s. Yowza. IMG_2184But worth it. We both needed a morning to disconnect from our digital lives and enjoy nature and a great book. I brought my journal up there cause it had been a hot minute since I had written an entry. Carsyn just stated reading You are a Badass (READ IT IF YOU HAVEN’T). We spent about an hour and a half up there. Wisdom tree is cool cause there’s this box where people write stuff and then leave it in there. Because I’m nosey as hell, I struggled to not read everyones’ notes but I restrained myself. I can only imagine the secrets people stick in the box.

BAWLED. Love, Simon. After Carsyn and I finished our morning at Wisdom Tree, we headed to go see Love, Simon. It is so good you guys. I probably cried for about the last half of the movie. For those of you who don’t know, it’s about a high school aged boy who is gay and has been hiding it his whole life because he is unsure of how to come out to his friends and family. Growing up, I had a lot of extremely close friends who lived this exact life. I thought this movie provided a pretty raw look into what that must have felt like for them. Ouch. This really tugged at our heart strings. Not to mention, the soundtrack is incredible. But I’ll talk about that more a few bullets down.

GROOVED.  Like a sexy human Claude Racine’s class at Edge. Yooooo. We learned a dance to Rocket by Beyonce. Which literally starts off by saying “Let me sit this @$$$$$$$$ on ya” so you can probably imagine the nature of the combo we learned. I’ve been trying to stretch myself when it comes to performance and committing to a character and this class just felt so good. Claude is cool as hell and teaches in such a relatable and real manner. I’ll definitely be back soon.

SURPRISED MYSELF. at Nikki. I had my first actual audition in front of an artist this month. That artist was Nikki Minaj. Lol yeah excuse me while I shit myself. Got to spend about 6 hours with my Clippers chica, Kylie.IMG_2267

SPENT. $25 on an entre at Mercado. HOLY SHIT CARNITAS HEAVEN. This is self-love activity numero dos. I can’t say I’ve spent that much money on a meal in a lonnnnng time but it feels good to be able to do that for myself when I want to. It’s a trendy little Mexican style restaurant in West Hollywood off 3rd street. I went with Carsyn and they set us at a two-top table by a fireplace. Ambiance points!!!! They for sure thought we were on a date though L O L. We started with the chips and guac and can I just say HOLY GUACAMOLE. I am a guac fiend and this was definitely top 5 level.IMG_1891 Carnitas are their specialty and since that’s literally one of my favorite meats, I couldn’t say no to that. Basically it’s a hunk of TENDER AF meat served with escabeche on the side and corn tortillas. And Carsyn and I split a side of mashed potatoes because we were really going for it. Pair that with a few spicy margaritas and boom, you have the perfect way to spend your evening. Dessert was Coconut Bliss non-dairy ice cream and an Eating Evolved coconut butter cup (AKA MY FAVORITE THINGS EVER, if you’ve never taken any of my recommendations this is the one that I promise you you should take). Where did I fit all this food you ask? That, my friends, is a question I will never be able to answer.

DRINK DRANK DRUNK. Bottomless mimosas at Mama Shelter. $20 for all you can drink mimosas. This reminded me of college where you can literally die on $20 worth of drinks (hello dollar-you-call-its). Obviously we had a little more self control than my college self probably would have but ooof did they sneak up on us. We started here for St. Patty’s day with some brunch and then ventured up to the rooftop. I’m so excited to come back once it’s a little bit warmer outside. I spent my time on the rooftop under a heater and blanket cause I’m fragile and California has ruined me.

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TUNES. Listened to Amy Shark, Exes. Alright, I said earlier in my blurb about Love, Simon, that I would get back to talking about the soundtrack. This is where I discovered Amy Shark. The song ‘Sink In‘ is one of my new favorites. This song punches ya in the gut. Not to mention it’s totally in my vocal range and my latest obsession when it comes to belting (and recording myself) in the car. Also if you haven’t checked out Exes yet, I highly recommend. She just released a song called ‘Over‘ (also one you may need your tissues for). SO so incredible.

OUTFIT REPEATED. Leather Jacket. Yeah this is no secret so I won’t dwell on this point too much. I feel like every time I feel cool enough to post an Instagram story of myself I’m wearing this stupid thing. I truly don’t know how I got by without it for as long as I did. I could be wearing a workout outfit but throw on my (p)leather jacket as a head out the door and instantly level up my life. I got mine at Urban Outfitters…pretty positive that all of Los Angeles owns the same exact one but it’s fine.

READ. Tiny Beautiful Things. I just bought a bunch of self-help books based on suggestions so THANK YOU to those of you that tossed some my way. This is the first of the group that I dove into. I’m about 100 pages in and I’m already in love. Basically it takes a bunch of advice column entries from Dear Sugar and complies both those and their responses together for a beautifully crafted series of stories and lessons on love and life. I love non-fiction books that I can apply to my own life, but I also love the story-telling quality that fiction books have. Because of that, this is such an easy read for me because it’s both. It’s all true little stories that are 100% applicable to life’s trials and tribulations.

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I spent the end of the month the best way possible, with my family. The perfect way to recharge. April’s gonna be a good one.

Alrighty friends, until next time.