The Blogger Recognition Award

Thank you to My Little Wild Life for nomination me for the Blogger Recognition Award! I haven’t been nominated for one of these awards in a while, so it means a lot to me to have readers who enjoy my content and think it is worthy of recognition! Thank you to all who read my blog, and enjoy what I post enough to keep reading. 

Rules for Acceptance of Nomination

  • Thank the blogger that nominated you.
  • Write a post to show your award.
  • Give a brief story of how your blog started.
  • Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers.
  • Select 15 other bloggers you want to give this award to.
  • Let them know you have nominated them and provide the link to the post you created.

How did Your Blog Begin?

Julia’s Leaps of Faith was born in June of 2015 when my now-ex boyfriend joined the army. It began as a safe space for me to write about my frustrations and experiences with the military and long-distance dating, while being a full-time college student completing two majors, who was also working part-time. Eventually, I began posting about other topics, including beauty, which I soon realized was the category most visited by my readers. I changed my blog from a “MilSO” blog, to a beauty blog, and received great response to the change. As college grew busier, I took some time away from WordPress to focus on my studies.

Finally, I graduated college in 2017 and decided I wanted to devote most of my blogging to my experience in the performing arts industry, with the occasional post about great beauty products, and healthy recipes. Julia’s Leaps of Faith is now a beauty, dance, and lifestyle blog dedicated to the authentic relaying of my experiences navigating the NYC dance scene, and promoting a healthy, active lifestyle.

Advice to New Bloggers

My biggest piece of advice is write from your heart, and write about topics you enjoy. I know my readers enjoy beauty posts, but right now my focus is on dance and healthy lifestyle, and I genuinely enjoy putting out content about those topics. There was a point in my blogging history where I grew very bored with topics about dating in the military and topics about beauty products because my content started to feel redundant and bland. I felt like I needed to only write about what I thought people wanted to read. Now, I keep my readers interest’s in mind, however, I only post about things I feel passionately for. It keeps blogging from becoming a chore, and it keeps me motivated to continue updating my feed.

Keep your content unique to you and your personality. Your blog will find it’s niche naturally as time progresses. I would say my blog is FAR from a MilSO blog anymore, and I am incredibly happy I didn’t continue trying to only cater to military significant others. Also, don’t be discouraged if you do not gain a quick following. You should blog for you, and the followers will come if you are persistent and write passionately.

New Nominees

I nominate:

  1. Away We Run She was one of my first followers/blogger acquaintances on WordPress, and I really enjoy her posts!
  2. Jenny in Neverland
  3. A Beautiful Thing
  4. Always, Cleia
  5. Bee Beauty
  6. Kirsty Jarvie
  7. Coastal Crochet
  8. The Dorky French
  9. Beccap Beauty
  10. What’s on Mimi’s Mind
  11. Charlotte’s Makeup Blog
  12. Paige Alicia Beauty

Right now I only have 12 nominations, but I will be adding the final three once I do some more reading on my WordPress reader. Thanks again to My Little Wild Life for nominating me! It’s so nice to have bloggers suppot each other and what we love to do – write!

xoxo

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Final Performances of 2018

As 2018 winds down, the curtain just closed on my last performance of 2018. I finished out the year with my one company’s annual Nutcracker Tea – an abbreviated version of Act II of the full-length Nutcracker. Guests are invited to eat sweets and pastries as they drink tea and coffee and watch the main company and the student company perform. It was so much fun, and I enjoy performing the Nutcracker for all of it’s magic and for the beautiful music.

This tea is most suitable for young kids, as we also have “fairy makeovers” available to them before the show, and they have the option to sit up front and close at the children’s seating right in front of the black box stage. Their eyes are usually so excited and curious as they watch everyone perform. It’s a wonderful feeling knowing you’re inspiring young kids, and I imagine this is similar to what people working at Disney feel like. I would still love to work for the Disney company one day.ย 

Other than Nutcracker, I performed in the gala for another company as their season opener on December 1. It was more of a wine and dine event for donors and patrons, but we performed a short, groovy dance for the attendees which was located at a really cute NYC dinner theater on West 72nd street. Lady Gaga apparently performed at this same theater before she became super famous, so it was kind of cool to think about that while having my own experience at the venue.

I have a few performances lined up for the new year already, as well as some auditions!! I’ll be performing a solo I’m choreographing at a showcase in March (which will be my first solo EVER!!), and I think we are going to be rehearsing for a full-length Cinderella ballet for May/June. The second week of January, I also have auditions for Disney World Orlando, and Royal Caribbean. They are open calls, so I’m expecting to be waiting a while as there are usually 400-600 people who show up for open calls. I will be re-auditioning for the Rockettes’ Summer Program in January or February as well, and hopefully more opportunities will be available soon. I can’t wait!

Related: Rockettes Mini Intensive – I Was Invited!

Voices of Dance Festivalย  The Tank Theater NYC
September 2018

2018 was filled with many successes, adventures, leaps of faith, and new experiences. Although checkered by heart break and some failure, I’d say for what it was, I made 2018 the best I possibly could given my circumstances. I am looking forward to burying 2018 in the past, and moving forward into 2019 happier, healthier, stronger, and way more excited for the future.

xoxo

New Natalie Dancewear Dance Socks

Hello loves!

On Wednesday, I was on my way to rehearsal when my phone lit up with an Instagram notification! A few weeks ago, I entered a contest on Instagram with DiscountDance.com – the online retailer I purchase all of my dancewear and needs from. They were having a contest, and to enter you had to comment below their photo your favorite blog post from the Discount Dance blog, and why for a chance to win THREE pairs of the new Natalie Dancewear Dance socks!

Well, as I am walking down 8th street in the East Village NYC, my phone lit up with a “liked comment” notification, telling me Discount Dance liked my contest entry comment. At this point, I totally forgot I entered the contest two weeks prior, and thought it was nice of them to acknowledge my comment (I wrote a lot, and really liked the article from their blog). Five minutes later, I received another notification from Instagram from a tagged comment from Discount Dance, saying I was one of the lucky winners!!

Coincidentally, this summer I discovered Natalie Dancewear made turn socks, which I put on my birthday wishlist! I didn’t necessarily think those socks were going to be great because they had padding on the ball of the foot of the sock, but I thought theyย  would be interesting to try. I never ended up buying them or getting them as a gift, so when I saw Natalie made a new design for their dance socks without padding, I new I had to enter the contest! If I didn’t win, I told myself I’d buy a pair just to try whenever DiscountDance.com had a free shipping deal.

Related: See Birthday Wishlist – It’s My Jordan Year

Now, I have three pairs of these socks coming my way for free! I was so shocked I won, and I cannot wait to try them out! They remind me a lot of the Apolla Shocks socks, which are the biggest name in dance socks on the market right now, with each pair retailing about $30. I don’t own Apollas, but I know a lot of dancers and dance educators who do who love them.

The Natalie socks retail for about $11.00 a pair (but right now they are on sale on their website for $5.91), so I will definitely be writing a follow-up post about their wear, durability, and traction once I have a few weeks to test them out! Here is a link in case you want to check them out:

Natalie Dance Socks

This was one of the highlights of my week, so I just had to share it. I hope you all enjoy this snow day we’re having if you live on the Northern East coast, and if not, have a fabulous Friday anyway!

**This post is not in any way sponsored by DiscountDance.com. I entered the contest and was choosen by the decision of Discount Dance**

Xoxo

Julia – You Got WHAT Pierced?!?

Hiya sweet things!

It’s Sunday night, and in my last post I promised to explain the new piercings I had installed in October. (See: October Blessings – Reflection) These piercings meant a lot to me for a multitude of reasons.

I won’t go into detail about the reasons because there are a lot of them, and some of them are very personal. However, I am excited to share my experience with you all because when I was doing research on the piercings before booking my appointment, I realized there was not a lot of reliable information about them available online. I hope my sentiments and thoughts on my experience help someone understand what it is like.

Back in August, I finally met with a reliable local piercer, and booked my appointment to have my nipples pierced! Yes – my nipples! I always played with the idea of having mine done since my freshman year of college, but never encountered a time where I could afford fine jewelry, the piercing itself, or the pain since I was a dance major and was always rolling around on the floor for modern dance class. I did my research, and found a local piercer with a reputable name. I met with her in August, she measured me (yes they have to do that!), and I looked through some catalogs for custom jewelry.

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All of my options from Neometal

I am allergic to nickel, and even the basic surgical steel bars they use for the piercing have some traces of nickel in them. To be safe and avoid an allergic reaction, I decided to splurge and order 100% titanium nipple bars (They were really expensive). I figured if I slurge now, I wouldn’t have to worry about changing them to prettier ones later on. Mine are anodized rose gold, and have threadless lavendar opal ends! THEY ARE STUNNING. Anyway, I ordered them from Neometal, and waited 8 long weeks for them to come in! Once they came in, I booked the first appointment I could make with my piercer.

My sister came with me, and let me tell you – THANK GOODNESS she was there. I was an excited, nervous wreck. Once I was in the room, I took my top off and the piercer cleaned and prepped the area for piercing. Additionally, you have to sit on your hands when you are pierced so you don’t flinch and mess up the piercing. No pressure, right? My sister held one hand and I sat on the other.

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Many people contemplating this piercing wonder about the pain. I have a high tolerance for pain, and I am not going to lie to you when I say this hurt REALLY bad. I mean, REALLY REALLY bad. My left boob was done first, and it felt just how you would imagine a 14 gauge needle going through your nipple would feel – AWFUL. They also have to leave the needle in before they slip the jewelry in, so the exchange of needle to jewelry is also a painful and awkward sensation since your body is in shock, and your nip is just chillen with a deeply punctured needle sitting in it.

The second one hurt even worse. The piercer said the second side hurts worse because once the first one is done, your body’s adrenaline drops because mentally we believe the pain is over. For me this was true, and the right nipple has been healing slower than my left one. However, I was also told from the piercer that is normal because we are not symmetrical beings.

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Anyway, afterwards I was given the aftercare – a sterile saline solution with gauze – and was told to spray the piercings 2 to 3 times a day and that’s it! Do not turn your piercings, and do not touch them! Mine only bled for the first four days, the first two days being thicker blood. Bleeding is normal, and I was told they could potentially bleed for the first two weeks. I was instructed to let the water in the shower clear the piercings off, however, if the blood was really bad, I was told I could spray the saline solution on a q-tip and gently try to clean them off.

If you wear the gauze in your bra for the first week, spray them consistently, and maintain your hygeine with daily showers, they will heal fine. I’ve had mine now for three weeks, and they are perfectly fine. I barely even feel them honestly, and after the first week, the residual piercing pain had almost totally subsided. The day after mine were pierced, I had to teach fitness, dance through a 3 hour rehearsal, and then teach dance at night. Even after all of that exercise and moving, they didn’t really interrupt my day at all, or my dancing, which is what I was most worried about!

nipple bars2

They start you with slightly longer bars to account for swelling, but after 6 months you can have them sized down to have a more snug fit. Full healing takes 9 to 12 months, and you’re free to change them whenever after a year. I don’t have a significant other at the moment, but my piercer also said comically nipple piercings can have oral contact after about 8 to 12 weeks. LOL thank you for the tip sis!

I am so happy with my piercings, and I just adore the way they turned out! The first week, I continuously peeped at them because I couldn’t believe I finally went through with it and had them done. They’re also super cute, and make me feel 1000x more confident. I love them and I hope if you’re contemplating this type of piercing, this post gave you some insight into the process and aftercare.

xoxo

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October Blessings – Reflection

Hi loves!

Remember a while back I mentioned October was going to be a really exciting month?! WELL – exciting doesn’t even scratch the surface. It was a whirlwind to say the least, and here is a rundown of all the amazing things I did and saw this past month!

1. Long2 Dance Company Rehearsals

I began rehearsing with Vanessa Long’s trainee company, and it has been so much fun! I enjoy Vanessa and our other director Zoe, and I feel like we have a strong group of women in our ensemble. Wednesday’s are CRAZY for me teaching fitness in the morning, running to LOWER MANHATTAN for three hours of rehearsal, and then running back to teach dance at night afterwards, but really either way, I end my Wednesdays fulfilled and excited for what’s to come – even though my body usually feels like it is on the verge of collapse. Peep the company sweatshirt ๐Ÿ˜‰

Related: My First NYC Dance Job Starts this Fall!! (2018)

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2. My first month as a Certified Xtend Barre Instructor/TRX Training

October was also my first full month as a certified and paid Xtend Barre instructor! I taught a month full of my own classes, taught my first 75 minute barre camp, AND I was trained in a new class – Xtend Suspend (TRX). I’ve been preparing my Xtend TRX workout, and hopefully by December will be teaching the TRX classes at the studio as well! I really love my job as a fitness instructor, and my body has never been stronger.

Related: I am Officially an Xtend Barre Instructor!

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3. Dorrance Dance Event

Over the summer while I was attending ADF, I met a choreographer I LOVE – Michelle Dorrance! I hung out with her in her dressing room after a show she performed in, and she invited me to an INVITE-ONLY event being held in NYC sometime in October. It was so hush-hush, that she couldn’t tell me what was going to happen, and only told me I had to email her assistant and tell her Michelle invited me to be on the list to get in. This was back in July when I met her, and I went to that event on October 30. It turns out it was a private viewing of a piece they debuted in 2017 as a rehearsal for their season Gala happening the next day (Oct. 31)! It was incredible, and was held in the rotunda at the Guggenheim on the upper east side. I was surrounded by lots of dancers, artists, and dance patrons, so to be invited to something like this was truly a brilliant experience.

Related: Iโ€™m Back and Ready to MOVE!

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4. Halloween Activities

I met some pretty awesome people this month at different parties and events themed around Halloween. It is my favorite holiday, and my favorite season to be spooky, so I had a lot of fun dressing up and creating characters for myself. I also had a lot of fun being able to party with my good friends and let loose a little after so much hustling and working! Since I already posted a picture of my fortune teller makeup, I’ll show you some galaxy makeup I attempted to do for a party I went to with my best friend.

PS: That septum piercing in the photo below is fake ๐Ÿ˜‰

Related: Evil (Mis)Fortune Teller Halloween Makeup!

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5. MY NEW PIERCINGS

Okay so number five is one of the BEST parts of October! I had two new piercings installed, and I am OBSSESSED WITH THEM! I love them so much to the point where I am actually going to make a whole post about them! ๐Ÿ™‚ The post should be up sometime this week! I won’t tell you what I had done (it’s a surprise), but I will tell you I did a LOT of research before I had it done. And I feel like if I make a post or two about my experience, it might help someone else who is contemplating going for it too! Pictures are to come with the post, so stay tuned ๐Ÿ™‚

This October had to be the best and busiest I’ve ever experienced. Between running to and from NYC, to modifying my body, to furthering my education and career; this month has been productive and exciting. I am so thrilled to finish out 2018 strong. And I’m SO ready for a new beginning with 2019.

Thanks for reading, xoxo

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