Our Gatsby Wedding Dance – Rumba, Lindy Hop, and East Coast Swing


Choreographed by Gigi Burton in Tucson, Arizona. Songs: “Adorn You” by Miguel and “Tightrope” by Janelle Monae. Music arranged by the best man, Chris. Video recorded and edited by Lauryn Ann from Lauryn Ann Photography.

Scottie and I decided we wanted to have a very memorable first dance. We hired the best choreographer in Tucson, Arizona, Gigi Burton, and began the adventure of couple dancing for the first time. We wanted something romantic and Gatsby 20s. We decided on using two different songs – both modern and amazing songs but had a classic vibe. “Adorn You” by Miguel has that sexy feel that was perfect for the rumba and “Tightrope” by Janelle Monae has that jazz/swing feel that was perfect for the Lindy Hop and Swing. Our amazing best man Chris put the music together and even slowed down the Janelle Monae song because it was unnaturally fast for us to dance to!

The actual dance classes: They felt like couples therapy! We fought, overcame obstacles, and encouraged each other. It was so fun having a goal to work towards together — making time to take lessons and practice provided us with time we would not have made for each other.  In total, we took about 8 hours of dance lessons and spent countless hours practicing. It was totally worth it to surprise all of our guests with this first dance! Our friends and family had no idea we were plotting a secret dance. Just a heads up: my mom is the the very loud one in the video — clearly she was super shocked by our first dance.

For anyone considering a choreographed dance for their own First Dance, here is my advice… DO IT!

  • We loved the time we spent together. Like, loved it.
  • It was fun learning how to dancing together. I had taken some classes in college, but never really became “good” at it. Scott was totally a dance virgin. We got to learn a new, super hard, skill together. Which brings me to…
  • Don’t give up when you realize it is fucking hard to dance (yes, it looks so easy on tv – it is so much harder to dance in a box than I ever imagined it was). We really almost quit after the first class because we assumed we would have it nailed in 2 classes and came to the realization this was not going to be easy. It got easier and easier with each class and every time we practiced.
  • Give yourself ample time to enjoy the whole dance aspect of the wedding planning. We learned our dance in less than 2 months and it was pretty stressful at times. I would give at least 3 months to have fun with it.
  • It is terrifying to dance for the first time in your wedding clothes. We didn’t know how the lifts would work with all the beading in my dress and if my dress was going to be slippery. Practice BEFORE you bust it out in front of everyone – one of my friends pulled over in a parking lot after they were married to practice their wedding dance. We did a quick practice session when we were taking couples pictures.
  • You will be listening to your dance song(s) over and over again – make sure you wont grow sick of the music. I still am not sick of our songs – but our teacher Gigi said she had one couple who decided 2 weeks before their wedding they hated the song they chose and she had to re-choreograph moves to a new song.
  • It is a bit expensive, but if you search around and find a choreographer who teaches privately and not out of a studio it is much cheaper. Gigi found various studios we could practice in (dance studios, yoga studios, and she even offered to come to our home). We would pay for the studio rental, about $25 an hour, and then pay her fee as well. It was far less expensive than the studios were charging.

I hope you enjoy the video! We will forever cherish this memory and may even continue dancing as a “date night.” I totally fell in love with Swing Dancing! It helps Scottie is very strong and I just get to be picked up.

Photos by Gaby J. Photography

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love, Sarah

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Britney’s “Work Bitch” Video is Exact Perfection


The premiere of “Work Bitch” came at the perfect time in my life. Isn’t that just how Britney does it? I am getting married in 2 months (!) and I have fallen off the working out train. This was due to many reasons including the rash from HELL that was spread by overheating. Maybe one day I will share that story with you. If there is any time in my life I need to be reminded to work, it is now. As Britney says,

You want a hot body? You want a Bugatti?
You want a Maserati? You better work bitch
You want a Lamborghini? Sip martinis?
Look hot in a bikini? You better work bitch

YAnnotateou wanna live fancy? Live in a big mansion?
Party in France?
You better work bitch, you better work bitch

It is nice to be reminded that that shit takes WORK. I do want a hot body! I want to look hot in a bikini [honeymoon in Cancun]! I want to live fancy! So, I gotta get to work, bitch.

Of course, the video is just mind-blowing and amazing in the way only Britney can pull off. It makes no sense at all. She is dancing in the desert, in a pool of hammerhead sharks, being pulled around by women dressed as S&M cats, exploding manikin heads … just perfection.

Thank you, Britney, for reminding me I gotta work hard, like it’s my profession.

love, Sarah

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Getting Reacquainted with Robyn


Remember Robyn from the 90s with that amazing song “Show Me Love?” Well, I am about 3 years behind, but Robyn released an album “Body Talk” that is totally incredible. I just had a craving to hear “Call Your Girlfriend” and have listened to it about 4 times already this morning. So, I thought: why not share it with you all? The video is pretty simple and amazing. It is one long shot and Robyn just dances with everything she has. I don’t know, it just feels honest, sad, and improvised. Different!

And another great song from “Body Talk” called “Dancing on my Own.” I do not miss these days – crushing on a guy to only turn around and he is making out with someone else.

Lastly, her original “Show Me Love.” Timeless pop!

love, Sarah

Britney Spears Wednesday – Beautiful, Heartbreaking Songs


Britney Spears has been tantalizing us all with little sneak peaks at her new album. I am just dying of curiosity. Aren’t you all? Album #8, called All Eyes on Me, may be released on September 17, 2013. I am saving all my iTunes credits for this big purchase!

She posted two posts on Twitter about some songs on her album:

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It got me thinking of all the beautiful slow songs Britney has released over the years.  My favorite one has to be Everytime. We all know she wrote this about her JT breakup, but it is so beautiful and sad. I had to share it here.

SOOO looking forward to more beautiful, and heartbreaking, songs from Ms. Spears. We all know she hasn’t had the easiest life – I feel these glimpses are so rare and special.

love, Sarah

Love Affair with Songza — My Top Play Lists


Songza

While I look so forward to Britney Spears Wednesday, I felt this post was still Britney related because she is a motivation for me on most of my music fortes. So, for today’s Wednesday I will share with you all my new favorite music app/web station SONGZA. Note: I think the app is easier to navigate than the web streaming.

What is Songza and why is it better than Pandora? Yes, I said it: better than Pandora. Songza is a free music streaming site with stations curated by music experts and designed for moods and activities. These stations really do feel curated and are really well selected and designed. Additionally, there are NO commercials and NO listening limits. It doesn’t stop after 30 minutes with the most fucking annoying message, “Are you still listening? We don’t like playing to an empty room.” Like, of course I am still listening! It has been 30 minutes, asshole!

Enough bitching from me… now it is your turn to explore Songza and bask in it’s glory. Especially for you, I have picked a few of my favorite play lists.

Working Out

Cardio Hip Hop: The raunchy rap really is motivating for some twisted reason. When A$$ came on, all I could think was, “I must keep running! I must get my ass like Big Sean wants!”

Massive Pop Hits: The Remixes: I can never get enough of Britney Spears [as you all know] and her songs remixed for work out motivation. There are also some amazing Katy Perry Remixes on this play list.

Relaxing at Home

Acoustic Versions of Pop Songs: Yep, I am a pop princess. I love all things pop and I like the acoustic twist.

Female Indie Pop Singers & Revolutionary Daughters of Kate Bush: Girl Power! I love female singers and songwriters.

Andy Warhol’s Record Collection: Pop culture of the 1960s-1970s, which translate to Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, and David Bowie.

Work – Clean Lyrics

The Rebirth of Alt Pop: I love upbeat alternative rock with catchy melodies and moody lyrics. A great motivator at work.

Code Your Face Off: The right beat and focus for work and no R rated lyrics to worry about.

Cleaning and/or Cooking

Girls Just Want to Have Fun: Enough said on this one. I hate cleaning and cooking so…. this adds a little fun to the activities with singing and dancing.

Soul Food Kitchen: Get your groove on with some soul in the kitchen. How fitting!

Ladies of Song: This is always on at our house. It is the perfect cooking music. It just makes me feel like I am in a different time period and makes me feel calm and serene almost immediately.

Just so you know, I have barely hit the tip of the iceberg that is Songza. Their stations are so amazing and diverse I fear I may never be able to fully explore their music! As I find new stations I will update this list and update you with a post. XOXO soon to be Songza lovers.

love, Sarah

Britney Spears Wednesday – Anxiously Waiting for Album #8 with Nostalgia


I follow Britney on Instagram, and she posted this adorable photo of her Album 8 Recipe. Yes, 8 albums in 14 years! I feel old.

While we wait anxiously for Britney’s 8th album to drop, I thought we could revisit one of my favorite songs from her first album “… One More time” released in 1999. “Born to Make You Happy” has always made me feel very nostalgic and like a 12 year old, dancing around in my bedroom with rolled up socks for boobs, imagining what it is like to fall in love.  I hate the message this song sends [and even as a kid knew it was a bit much]. Just check out the chorus:

I don’t know how to live without your love
I was born to make you happy
‘Cause you’re the only one up in my heart
I was born to make you happy
Always and forever, you and me
That’s the way our life should be
I don’t know how to live without your love
I was born to make you happy

Yet, at the same time, it hits a cord, completely fucking nailing pathetic thoughts I had going through various break-ups. When I say various break-ups, I mean various break-ups with my now fiance. 7 years together [long distance for 3 years] results in heart-wrenching fights and stupid decisions. It is kind of crazy how the world goes on when you are going through a break-up. I remember thinking the sun wouldn’t rise again … yet it did. Sometimes you just have to embrace those pathetic thoughts and mope — while listening to some Britney.

On a side note, this video is ’90s to the extreme! The silver outfit, the blue eyeshadow, and the weird modern dance moves. Britney, I will have a pillow fight with you any day of the week!

love, Sarah

Yoga Sun Salutations with Rhye


I had to share my new sun salutation song called “Open.”  I originally downloaded this song via a free iTunes download at Starbucks [maybe your local Starbucks still has some!] I have since downloaded their whole album “Woman.” I am totally smitten and in love. Their songs have such feeling and bring out an emotion when you listen to them. I also am digging the disco vibe some of their songs have. I am sure every person is reminded of a memory and feeling by their songs.

Rhye’s song “Open” is the best song ever to accompany your Yoga sun salutations. The violin, the soft drums, the voice. The voice. Also a note on the voice, it is a man. MIND BLOWN. Check out this article on NPR about Rhye.

Listen and let “Open” touch your soul while you hold your downward dog.

love, Sarah

Britney Spears Wednesday – Slave for You Body Motivation


Ladies, if you ever need work-out motivation simply watch Britney’s “Slave for You” music video. This might be the hottest little video of all time! Whenever I watch it, I am just memorized by her abs, her pretty face, and how good she looks all sweaty!

This video is guaranteed to get you In the Zone at the gym, with workout videos, or when road running! Yes, I just made a Britney Spears pun.

Britney Spears Wednesday — Since Jay-Z Loves Toxic


This may be old news, but Jay-Z recently announced to the twitter world he was not only a fan of Britney Spears, but his favorite song is “Toxic.” DUH! “Toxic” is AAAMMAZING. This is also my fiance’s favorite song of hers. I am extremely proud that Britney is getting the credit she deserves from the hip-hop King.

I like Jay-Z, but lately I have been really disappointed in his music . I love his “99 Problem” days, but feel his new stuff has terrible rhymes; his flow isn’t really what it use to be. Needless to say, this openness about his love for Britney Spears has made him my favorite person.  I have bought a ticket for the I am on the Jay-Z train.

Enjoy some of magically pop gold that is “Toxic”

Britney Spears Wednesday – Baby … One More Time Performance


I am a true Britney Spears fan. From the first time I saw her music video “Baby … One More Time,” I was in love.  I was only 11, but I remember thinking she was the greatest thing that ever happened, like ever.

Now 15 years later, I am still as smitten! I am dedicating Wednesdays to celebrating Britney Spears. Wednesdays always need a little spicing up because it is mid-week. This morning I listened to Britney’s new song “Oh La La” on repeat for about 30 minutes — it seems the ability to listen to songs on repeat is an ADHD quality? Who knew! I just don’t get sick of Britney … much my man dismay. I have taken over his Pandora by adding 5 Britney Spears stations. Yep, such a lucky guy.

For the first Britney Spears Wednesday, this video is from her “Oops I Did It Again” tour. She is not lip-syncing and is dancing her little ass off. *sigh*

Happy Wednesday!