Monday, September 12, 2011


I'm teaching dance this year. This is not new. I've have taught and helped with dance classes in Council Grove every year except one since I have been in third grade.  I'm teaching the newest baby tap class and some high school classes. On my way to dance on Wednesday night, as I was boogieing to the radio, I got to thinking about how imporatant dance was in my life and how it's such a wonderful tool for little girls, teenagers and young ladies to learn so much about themselves and to express themselves.

When I was growing up, the dance studio was owned by Jill Fitzgerald. She taught all the classes with some tough love. She loved all her students but was the first to come down on someone for not putting forth enough effort or living up to what she knew they were capable of. At each class Jill would give the younger girls glitter, lip gloss or sometimes spray them with perfume that she always sprayed around the room. Not only did the "babies" learn rythmn and dance steps but they learned how to be little girls and like all the glitzy stuff that little girls should love. Now I don't mean that all girls should love glitter, there is nothing wrong with making mud pies... I did a ton of that... but all girls should get to play with all that's girly.

This is a page from my dance scrapbook. Pictures of Jill and I growing up. If you can't tell, Jill is one of those people who never goes out with out her hair and makeup done. Even to this day... if you see her out and about she is completely embarrassed if she's not all made up.

This was my senior year... I danced to "Have you Ever Been In Love" by Celine Dion. I mostly put this picture on here because of those abs! Unfortunatley, I don't think I'll ever have those again!

This picture was taken after Jill's last dance recital. This was while I was in college. If you can't tell... I had been crying that night. Jill was and still is a very special person in my life... and after seeing her muliple times a week for at least 16 years - I was sad to see her go...

Jill's husband Eldon was always one of my favorite people. He passed away last year. When I was in high school I would sometimes meet Jill & Eldon at the Hays House for dinner and chat with them. Eldon and Jill would bicker back and forth and Eldon always ended up saying something along the lines of, "All dance teachers think they are better than everyone else" or something along those lines. That was always his best way to try to put Jill in her place... And Jill would always say, "Now don't be saying that stuff about Amanda!" Those two would always make me laugh.

When I graduated high school, I had the priviledge of dancing on the Classy Cats at Kansas State University. I LOVED being a Classy Cat. I loved all of it but especially loved the football games. I loved being on the field and marching out with the band, cheering for 4 hours at the game and just the feeling of being a part of something so big. I loved dancing at basketball games as well, but football season always was my favorite.

This was the team my freshman year. I still remember my first game and the rush of hearing the wabash cannonball and doing pre-game in front of 50,000 KSU fans. Jeremy, Dillon and I went to the opening game last week with our friends Jeffery and Joni. I was so excited because we got into the game by pregame and got to watch all of it. There isn't a time that I hear the pledge of allegiance, star spangled banner, and alma mater that I don't tear up.

 There is a picture similar to this of me on the NCAA College Football video game. I still get calls from people wondering if I knew I was on a video game! :) Too bad I don't get any royalties from that!

The dance studio in Council Grove is still going strong. After Jill left, Mary Myers took over. It's been kinda neat to watch how it's changed and how different it is. There are new teachers that bring new ideas and the recital is always great. The little girls still get to play little girly games and tap their toes and the older girls still bust a move every Wednesday night in May in preparation for the recital... it's nice to know that some things never change.

1 comment:

  1. 1. LOVE looking at your old pictures.
    2. So glad I'm not the only person that gets caught up in pre-game.....
    3. Miss and love you, friend! :-)


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