The Heart of a Princess

©2015 Dancinmoma

©2015 Dancinmoma

Inside the heart of every girl…there is a princess. This princess is the holder of her own strength and faith. For within her, she can find that place where magic happens. She has inner beauty, dreams, hope and plans to make the world a better place (with or without a prince). The sparkles on her tiara are reminders to look for the good in every speck of dust. For even the finest diamond comes from a large, dark piece of coal. When she finds this shimmer, she can send this light out into the world to warm the spirits of others.

This princess works hard; she listens to her friends and celebrates both sorrow and joys with them. She helps others find their inner sparkle. That light can take her through the dark times, but her favorite thing to do to make things better is to….DANCE!! Yes. Dance!!

To dance like a princess is to express oneself and yet be unified with others in the simple JOYS of moving across the floor or just twirling in place.

Spreading happiness…

Listening without judging…

Helping others…

Letting her light shine…

For it only takes one simple gesture of pure kindness to ignite someone else’s light….

Unconditional… 

This heartwarming video captures the true essence of the bond between a mother and child. If unconditional love could be defined without using words… THIS is the answer. 

Every MOM understands this… no matter what our differences. We are all unique and have gifts to share with our children and the world. 

What is YOUR gift?  YOU are a MOM and your child/children love YOU as YOU (even if they can’t see you).  They are pieces of your soul that share unconditional, pure love with YOU.  Could they find you in a line of moms using only touch and smell? I think so. 

You are a MOM. You are BLESSED. 

Grab your tissues and watch here—> http://youtu.be/DRoqk_z2Lgg

Connection.

copyright 2015 Dancinmoma

I’ve realized recently, that I seem to be on this journey to find connections; connections that are meaningful, soulful and flawed…like me. I’m not talking about romantic connections…just heart to heart moments that mean something when you walk away, so that you can actually feel better about the world and know that we are ALL imperfect but loved.

By taking a moment to talk with people with different backgrounds, different feelings, unique stories and thoughts… you can learn a lot about yourself and others, but only if you truly LISTEN. Unfortunately, human nature allows individuals to immediately judge a person, even while you are talking directly to them! It is hard not to let that inner ego/selfish voice within take over, but if we learn to turn that negative voice down or mute it even, your heart will OPEN even more… You may even change that person’s life.

Can’t we all just be imperfect and flawed together, without judgement?

To me the world is NOT and never will be… black and white. There are far too many layers of each human being to truly KNOW them. Think of the many intricate parts of each person that is wired differently, based from perception, to self-worth, to their past and what they have learned from each obstacle or challenge they have faced.

So I’m on this mission share good things when the thought pops in my head or an opportunity presents itself to friends, family and people I may not even know… In fact, I told a construction worker yesterday, that his joyful smile and wave, as I pass through the road work construction every day, literally makes my day! When I ran into him at a gas station nearby, I didn’t have to say anything, but I felt the need to within myself, so I did (as maybe, just maybe, he needed to hear that). His response was very humble. “My mama always taught me that a little smile can go a long way!”

Yes it can.

All it takes is one tiny spark to light the fire within.

So I challenge you to join me on my quest to find connections in the world, to see humans in a better light. Say something nice, that you truly mean, to someone today… or offer up a smile to a stranger…

YOU may just make a difference.

 

Fit to be an Irish Queen?

This is a tale of how a lucky girl was “fit to be a queen” on a weekend in March of 2014…Princess Crown

Irish flags are waving. Green shamrocks are all around. Bagpipes are tuning. Men strut around in plaid kilts carrying a pint in their hand. Wee ones run around with green beads flicking. Lucky ‘gold’ coins adorn the tables. The Irish spirit and sounds fill the air! It’s a cacophony of noise. But hey, it’s St. Patrick’s Day. The official parade kickoff ceremony is beginning, in a pub, of course.DSC07366

The sounds of voices chatting in our local pub, applause, laughter, a speech from time to time. I brush aside Danny Boy’s hair. He told me he was to be the Lord Mayor of this year’s parade. As I was prepping him for his big moment… I notice more than a few sets of eyes on me. Daniel is Skyping with his parents and sisters in Florida. I wave.  They are grinning at me like Cheshire cats.

Gradually, I tune into the words a lovely Irish woman is saying…apparently she is introducing someone…Hmmmm….

DSC07374This person graduated from MSU? And a Dance student? Communications major? Her family lineage goes back to County Roscommon in the Emerald Isle? Wow! I could totally hang out with this lass! We’re virtual clones. As I process the similarities between this girl and myself…. I pause… and look at Danny Boy. He has that same Cheshire cat grin I can still see on the ‘Skypers’. And my son has the video going, pointing at me.  Hadn’t noticed that before. Wait! They are talking about me? DSC07373

I thought Danny Boy was to be the “Lord Mayor” this year. Confused and bewildered, I hear applause. People are helping Danny push me toward the stage. They are crowning me the 2014 Irish Queen? What?! As I try to catch my breath, I am wrapped in a beautiful vest and shawl adorned with unique pins. And a real crown is placed on my head! More applause. Now they want me to talk? OMG! I babble on about being in shock, I kick up my legs a little for a pretend jig.  I pull out an Irish Toast I had prepared for my hubby, since I thought this was HIS day.

                                I one day woke to a stormy night, twas not a single star.

                                Morning brought a rainbow clear, I followed it afar.

                                There I found to my delight, a prize beyond all measure;

                                Aye, no pot of gold, but YOU my dear, the REAL TREASURE.

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I am honored and embarrassed by the attention, yet I enjoy it too! I am told that I am the 36th Irish Queen. Each beautiful soul, virtually every previous Queen, women with stories and hearts full of love, come up and proudly point out the pins on their identical hunter green shawl. I’m invited to tea at high noon and a bunch of other things. It’s all a blur, quite frankly. If there is a local royalty even for a second, I can feel it. I also sense an intense desire building to learn more about the Irish Queens who went  before. I must follow-up on that. IMG_3549

Then the Irish music kicks in. The parade begins its slow but happy journey. Hey! I get to ride in a car even! And the chauffer? My own Lord of the Leprechauns… my hubby… O’ Danny Boy. Caseman (my favorite second-oldest son) will ride in the passenger seat while little Miss McKenzie sits on my lap to help wave along the parade route. The Irish Teen (Brady, my favorite oldest son) waves, then disappears into the crowd to find his best lads and lassies. ;-) The day is sunny but c-c-c-c-c-cold, really cold. Feels like it might snow! No big deal…I know there will be plenty of Irish Music, a pint or two of Guinness and an Irish jig coming up shortly. I’m warming up already!

I see friends on the route waving their Irish flags. Casey jumps out to run alongside (Yes, Dan stopped first.) Brady and his friends join in. The frosty breeze nips at my nose. What a true Irish Blessing, however frigid. After a fabulous spin around downtown Traverse City, more than a few “queenly waves” — McKenzie seemed like a natural at the task — and much dancing, we arrive at the destination where the celebration begins in earnest. Adorned in my queen’s garb passed down from queen to queen, I accept the pint handed to me — as any Irish Queen most certainly should—  and make my way to the dance floor. IMG_3534

Teaching Celtic dance is a passion of mine, so I might as well… aye? ‘Tis time for a wee little Jig or two…”Your Majesty!” ;-)

As a thank you for sharing this memory with me, I’ll leave you with a little limerick:

So the tiara may tilt sideways at times

It may not always shimmer,

But what lies within the Irish Soul is what really counts,

It’s a light that is sure to glimmer.

– Pamela Murphy McCormick

My Oscar Night Fantasy…

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A large, golden Oscar stands guard stage left. And I am mesmerized with celebrities. Meryl Streep is in my view (THE one and ONLY Meryl frickin Streep). I see her profile over Reese Witherspoon’s shoulder. George Clooney is presenting. I gaze into his eyes, wondering what he and his wife talk about over dinner. He sure is dreamy…Isn’t he?

Wait! Speaking of McDreamy, there is Patrick Dempsey. Hmmmm, he exudes dignity and utter “hotness.” Kind of like Bon Jovi. Sigh.

A tap on my shoulder wakes me from my daydream. I look up… ummm Helloooo. Ben Affleck. I smile wondering what HE wants. Wait. He’s motioning to me to get on stage. Everyone is looking at me. I’m sorry. What? I won? I won? (Holy Sh&%!) I WON!!

Hugh Jackman (in all of his hot handsome-ish) stands up, shoots me a smile and escorts me to the stage, where I miss a step and fall into his arms. He twirls me around as if it was all part of the “act” and carries me on stage! I fan kick out of his arms almost ripping my dress and lean into his chest with a flick of my leg and quick smile. Clooney joins in the act and regally extends his hand out and spins me into his other hand holding the golden guy. I grab the statue with a giggle, whisper a thank you in his ear and bop a curtsy to the Hollywood men who got me on stage, as my new pal “Hughie” takes his phone out for a group “selfie.” (OMG!!! Where is Ellen?)

I take a moment to grasp Oscar…and stare at all of his GOLDEN presence.

“Well … Hellooooo hollywood. How’d ya like that …entrance? (as I giggle). Thanks Hughie and Georgie!” (I wink as audience laughs). The send-off music begins….already.

Good Lord, you are SO good. Thank you God! Thanks to ones who said I could do this and the ones who felt I couldn’t, but didn’t say anything…THIS is for you. Life is all about pushing and pulling, rising and of course falling, losing and WINNING!! Today I feel a little like a winner (as I gaze at Oscar with a big sigh). We DID it! To my support system, my lifeline, the ones that give me purpose….my husband, my groom, the guy from the airplane, an amazing man who easily makes me smile, and my heart melt, to my precious children (pieces of my soul) who hold my heart in a way no one can. In the words of Tom Cruise in Jerry Maguire, “You complete me.”

To the rest of my family who cheer me on through good times and bad, to my girlfriends…my strength, my “soul”diers, they put the ‘La la la’ in laughter. Together we can charge through anything. To my online #smgirlfriends and #30secondmoms, a group of AMAZING and talented women who inspire me to new heights.

(Music gets louder)

Wait!  I couldn’t leave without thanking my new group of DANCE friends from the recent charity event…Here’s to you, SWINGSHIFT and the STARS! Together we danced, we cried, we twirled through adversity and we pirouetted to CELEBRATE the power of an amazing community with incredible generosity. To my charity dance partner, whom I met randomly on a stage 6 months ago….you are a kind and generous man, with a God-giving heart that enhance your work, your friends, your family. Together we changed lives performing on the dance floor at City Opera House. I am thankful to be able to call you a friend for life…. and I love that I’ll never look at a cement mixer the same again!  I hold up a photo. Look! An upside down ‘Ms. Pam!’ Swingshift cement mixer

To my “pretend” men…. Donny Osmond and Justin Timberlake. Yep. Now wouldn’t that be an interesting duet! J (I giggle). Donny, after meeting you in Vegas and watching you win the mirror ball trophy, you inspired me to “try new things,” and face my fears. Marie may be “a little bit country” but you, Donny O, are the “rock to my roll!”  And JT! My man! Hashtag (motion the symbol with my fingers)  #Yourholyhotness! Yep. I’m a happily married mom of 3 but damn you can make me smile. You had me at “bringing sexy back”  You had me at SNL. You had me each concert. You had me at ‘nsync!  Okay, you really have Jessica…yada yada… but you entertain my soul to its core and make me want to DANCE!!! Thank you.

To Jimmy Fallon… (Jimmy jumps up.) Hey, (He blows kisses my way) you are the president of late night!! You make us all laugh, sing, play games, dance… the world needs more of YOU. Seriously. You have the BEST job. I can’t get enough. Hashtag  #YoureAKeeper #CanIHaveaJobonYourShow. Thank you! And to Ellen Degeneres, for what YOU have done for daytime!  Hashtag #DanceParty! The Oscar stage will never be the same without your famous selfie (that I and a few gazillion of your other fans retweeted, of course) and the pizza guy, (pause) wow that sounds really good right now.

Hmmmm…What are the odds I could invite Ellen, Jimmy, JT and Donny O over for game night! What a blast that would be!!! Hashtag #MyFantasy Speaking of fantasy, someday I hope to be IN an opening number somewhere with the “wickedly talented” Neil Patrick Harris. Hashtag #DrDoogieCanBoogie. #AdelleGazemhasnothingonyou (giggle).

(music is really loud)

Sorry, got sidetracked… Oh! Oh! Wrap it up, she says. Gracias. Merci. Thank you EVERYONE for helping me believe in the possibilities when fear tries to take over. Keep dreaming, keep imagining, keep that inner child going…THAT is where the GOOD stuff happens in this thing called LIFE!!!  (As I dance off stage I fist pump Neil Patrick Harris as he takes the mic.)  “A cement mixer?” he says. “Go get’em Pammy, ROCK it out, sistah!”

I blow a kiss his way….

;-)

 

Dear 2014

Dear 2014,

As we round out another year full of triumph, defeat and a multitude of blessings (some in disguise) I bid you adieu. I thank you for yet another chance to experience life and all it has to offer. I thank you for humility. I thank you for strength and endurance. I thank you for a sense of humor.

We have danced together; we have cried together, we have covered our eyes in fear and opened our eyes to miracles. We held hands tight in a number of disappointing moments, yet we overcame and raised our hands up to celebrate!

We were heartbroken in loss, but hugged in sorrow. We opened our eyes again to love and to the little moments that mean more now than they ever will. We celebrated the life of loved ones no longer on this earth, yet we miss the sounds of their voice, their words of encouragement and laughter that could fill a room. We relearned the power of prayer, the power of spirit that lives on in each of us. We met angels on this earth and those in the heavens. We sang and yes we DANCED some more.

New hopes, new friends, new experiences also filled the woven patchwork of 2014. Together we changed our lives and others. We opened our eyes to possibilities and to the power of community. We opened our hearts again to LOVE that has been there all along and love that can be renewed.

2014: A year of change. A year of humility. A year of blessings. A year of sorrow. A year of LOVE. A year of DANCE. A year that I can never get back but will carry in my heart forever. God Bless you 2014. I will carry your lessons into 2015. I will pray again. I will hope again. I will BELIEVE in possibilities again in 2015 And YES, I will DANCE through LIFE again. Please, please new year, just catch me if I fall. Together we can RISE UP and celebrate the moments that have yet to unfold…

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Happy New Year!

Don’t Doubt…DANCE it OUT!!!

DanceItOutWhen in Doubt… DANCE it out!

Can you hear it? No, not the “voice in your head”silly. The Music!!
It’s always there within your reach. Everyone has a song or tune that speaks to them, touches their souls and inspires their inner well-being.

So… what’s your “signature tune?”

You know the one, the song that — no matter what — you will sing out loud in your car or shower; the one to which you will always get up and DANCE!

A playback button pushed or keyboard clicked will start the music that may be the one thing needed to create new ideas and chase those troubles away. So turn it up! Crank the volume and DANCE.
Okay, full disclosure. I am Dance Teacher, so music is an important part of the job, but I’m also a Wife, Mom, Writer and Editor so I’m tossing an eclectic mix of “personalities” into the world. It can get a little stressful at times, but I have always been one for multitasking. Music & Dance have been and always will be my default solutions to my challenges.

Thus my motto: “When in Doubt…Dance it out!”

To me, MUSIC and DANCE combined is actually the solution to nearly anything.
– Let’s say you have a slideshow of important graphics/sales forecasting, or photos from your recent vacation. Watch it for one minute. Now add MUSIC and watch it again; any difference?
– You are on a road trip to your next sales meeting, in a convertible (because it sounds fun), top down. Yes, the sound of the wind whipping through your hair is nice, but turn up a favorite tune? It is SO much better.
– You have been wracking your brain with an overwhelming problem to solve. Play a little music, and you may just find the answer. It’s the standard ‘walk away from a challenge; take a breath to get a fresh view’ technique with a little zing to make you sing.

Consider a myriad of everyday events made better by music and dance:
-The movie trailer with the voice overs, but without dramatic music? No Way!
-The sports event without the musical interludes, or cheers…Not even…
– The climactic scene in a thriller video without drums beating or ominous music… I don’t think so.
-A bride walking down the aisle in total silence… weird.
-The world famous university marching band entering the field quietly… Holy mackerel!
Dance is all about steps. Heck so is life, family and business. So listen to a favorite singer or band and begin moving forward, one step at a time. If you are the more adventurous type, you could even add a leap or spin… oooooh!
Make some noise! Get some ideas! Build your Business! Have fun with your family!

Don’t Doubt.

Dance. It. Out.

G.I.F.T.S. 5 simple tips for powerful PRESENTations

©2013 In the Company of Ideas

©2013 In the Company of Ideas

As a former product development specialist, I had to be creative in designing, researching and developing new products for our industry. (When the words ‘product’, ‘specialist’ and ‘development’ are in your job title, creativity is a must.) I was also in charge of presenting these products to our National Sales Force.  It was my job to present them with the tools and “gifts” needed to help them sell more. I often thought of myself as a product cheerleader. I needed to focus their attention on the new product, make it personal, and exciting to them. Once they were charged up then I had to give the information they needed to do their job, which is to get their customers equally excited, and ready to issue purchase orders.

I used an acronym, as I often do, to present/sell the product at our National Sales Meeting in Naples, Fl. (Okay, so the use of letters is not unique. But for remembering, sometimes simpler is better.) The acronym “G.I.F.T.S.” offers tips not only for a memorable sales presentation in front of a large audience, it works well in smaller settings too. The tips can also be used when writing a piece for your target audience or giving a personal gift to a family member or friend. The goal…to have a satisfied customer backed up with some product passion.

Here is what works for me:

Get Personal. I tapped into their emotions, and set goals.

Interact. I listened to the needs of each region and their representatives, while investing the time needed to get the job done. (Or listen to thoughts of your audience, readers or family members).

Face time. Be expressive. That is my normal mode so this one is easy for me. Get up on the stage. Act out a scenario. Sing. Dance. Present the facts in a way they did not expect. Focus on the most important fact first with an appropriate lead in to get their attention. (This can easily be expressed in the written word as well).

Tell a Story. Make them laugh. A mind at play is always creative and receptive to new ideas. (“Play” is Profitable).

Surprise! I always kept them guessing as to what I’ll do next. The element of surprise in a presentation always grabs attention. (Even the nay-sayers perk up).

So whether you are planning a large presentation, writing a new piece or even presenting a unique home-made movie to your families…use your own “gifts” to make it a truly memorable one.

Celebrate your gifts

Share your gifts

Can you hear the applause? Can you feel the gratitude expressed?

That’s for YOU and a job well done.