Tag Archives: dancing

Dancing With The Stars (or A Workout Friends Hangout)

I haven’t watched “Dancing With The Stars” since the beginning, but I have been interested in this current season. The son of my late acting coach is one of the stars this season and I was so excited to get to see him on the show. And as soon as the cast for the current season was announced, I went online to try to get tickets. I was put on a wait list for tickets and was hoping I’d get tickets in time to see Chris on the show. Sadly, he was eliminated after the first week and right after that I got the email that I could now get tickets.

Even though Chris was eliminated, I figured it could be really fun to go to a taping. I’ve been to many tv tapings before, but I never had been to a live show. I knew that it would be really cool to see how everything happens during the commercial breaks and decided to get the tickets and then just enjoy whatever stars were still in the competition at that point. I asked around to a couple of friends to see who could come with me, and 2 of my Orangetheory friends were able to go! So it was Orangetheory night at “Dancing With The Stars”!

The way that all tv tapings work is that they give out more free tickets than there are seats. They assume there will be no shows (or in my case I ordered 4 tickets and only needed 3) so they ask you to get there early to try to get in. We got there about an hour before we were supposed to be there by, and that ended up being perfect for us. Even though we heard the speech multiple times that not everyone would be let inside the studio, the 3 of us ended up being the last 3 who got in! It’s so crazy that we were the cut off point, but I’m so glad we made it!

There were no phones allowed inside the studio so I don’t really have that many photos from the taping. We were in the first balcony toward the side behind the judges. We had some moments where the view was blocked, but we could see most of the stage. And when we couldn’t see things there was a tv monitor that we could look at so we could see what it looked like on live tv. I know so people want to be seen on tv when they go to tapings like this, but I didn’t care to be on tv. The only time you could almost see us is when they showed the entire audience. But unless you knew where to look, you’d never see us.

Yeah, you can barely see the 3 of us between those red arrows.

When I got my tickets, I didn’t know what the theme for the show would be. But it ended up being Disney night and that seemed so perfect to me! Each of us had Glow with the Show Mickey ears to wear during various parts of the taping. I was so excited about that because I never had those ears before. But when the taping was done we were told that we didn’t get to take them with us. Oh well. I only wish that I didn’t have to turn my phone in to security before going into the taping so I could have taken photos with the ear. They were super cute!

The advantage of going to a live taping is that you know exactly how long it would be (unlike going to a sitcom taping where it can be 5 hours for a 22 minute show). Neither of my friends watch “Dancing With The Stars” and I think they were a bit worried that being there for 2 hours would feel like a long time. But it really flew by! All the dances were so amazing and there were a couple of live singing performances at the show as well. And of course, I loved the music because they were all Disney songs. I knew pretty much all the songs and was excited to see how the dances matched with the songs.

And while the dances were awesome, I did love watching the crew during the commercial breaks to see how quickly they changed over the set. There was a big clock on the screens during the commercial breaks so they knew exactly how much longer they had to do everything. They were super efficient and you can tell that they practice a lot to do the set changes in the time they had. And while the show was live, it was neat to see the choreography that the cameras had to do. There was a lot of work with a steady cam, but it was also interesting to see how the stable cameras worked with the steady cam and to see the camera work on the floor and then look up at the tv screen to see how it looked for tv. I know that I’m a bit of a nerd with the behind the scenes stuff like that, but it really is amazing how much work the crew does to make everything look as perfect as it does on tv.

Once the live taping was done, we were excused from the studio pretty quickly. It took a bit of time to get our phones back (the security team was super organized but there were so many of us in line to get phones) but we were quickly on our way out of the studio. Even though we were only in the taping for 2 hours the entire time including being in line was about 5.5 hours. It was still a shorter day than most tv tapings, but it was still a good chunk of time.

Even though Chris isn’t a part of the “Dancing With The Stars” season anymore, I have been watching the show this season and will continue to watch this season to see who wins. There are a lot of amazing dancers and stars on the show still and I’m excited to see what dances come up next! And if I get another opportunity to go to another live taping, I’d probably do it. It was a fun thing to do and I know I have other friends who couldn’t go this time but would love to go with me!

Santa Barbara Wedding (or Dancing The Night Away)

Right after my 5K, I had to get ready to head up to Santa Barbara. It was time for Rayshell and Paul’s wedding!

I’ve felt so fortunate that I had been invited to celebrate Rayshell (and Paul) leading up to the wedding. So the actual wedding was just another opportunity to celebrate them and I couldn’t wait! I was in Santa Barbara all weekend to spend time with my family (my parents were there to visit my brother and sister-in-law the same time I was up there), but first I want to focus on the main event!

The wedding was on Sunday afternoon on the beach in Santa Barbara. The ceremony was originally supposed to be outside on the beach, but due to the threat of rain it had to move inside to where the reception was going to be. But to be honest, I think it looked beautiful inside!


Also, being inside meant we didn’t have to worry about the wind or cold (or rain except it didn’t end up raining). When I arrived, I saw a bunch of my friends there so we went inside to claim our seats for the ceremony. I think we got some primo seats, so we were pretty happy. We spent the time before the ceremony started catching up and my friends’ husbands entertained us by being silly and deciding which groomsmen looked like which celebrities.

The ceremony itself was short and sweet (the way I think ceremonies should be). There were the traditional elements (Rayshell walking in with her dad, the vows, the ring exchange, and a first kiss before they were introduced as husband and wife), but the ceremony was performed by a friend of theirs so while it was short it was nice and personal.

Walking Down The Aisle Wedding Ceremony KissNewly Married

I had seen Rayshell’s dress before (I was there when she bought it), but it looked even more incredible on her at her wedding. She had sleeves added to the dress and once it was tailored to fit her it made her look like a bride in a magazine! I love that she was able to find the perfect dress and that she looked so gorgeous in it!

As soon as the ceremony was over, the bridal party went outside for photos and the guests stayed inside for cocktail hour. My friends and I were hanging out and enjoying the view from inside while drinks and appetizers were passed around (I didn’t eat much then because I wasn’t hungry yet, but all the food had rave reviews from everyone else!).

The Girls The View

We also wandered around the space a bit checking out what was there since we hadn’t done that before we sat down for the ceremony. We checked out the cake before the cake cutting.

Wedding Cake

There was an amazing photo display of family weddings through the years! We all loved this idea and I had never seen it done at a wedding before but I have a feeling that all the single people who were there will be copying this idea when they get married (I think I will when I get married one day)!

Table Cards

And we signed the guest book which was a drawing of Rayshell and Paul.

Guest Book

Then it was almost time for dinner to start, so we found where all the seating cards were to see what table we were at.

The Table

I loved that all the seating cards were in shells! I was seated at table 7 where some of my friends were seated (it seemed like the friends were scattered all around, but that didn’t really matter too much to us because as you’ll read we spent too much time on the dance floor).

My Card Table 7

After the bridal party and Rayshell and Paul were introduced and seated at their tables, it was time for dinner. Rayshell had told me before that it was going to be a buffet, but I had no idea that a buffet dinner could be this amazing!


This was so yummy and tasted like any plated dinner you could get at a fancy restaurant! During dinner, I was chatting with my friends at my table and enjoying the room we were seated in. Besides the amazing ocean view, the room was really gorgeous with tall ceilings and cool beams. I hadn’t seen a venue like this before and I think Rayshell and Paul picked the perfect place for their wedding.


Rayshell and Paul had their first dance, and before I knew it the party had started! I’m usually not one to dance that much, but the DJ they had was amazing and even I spent most of my evening dancing with all of my friends and just being silly.

Friends The Group Dancing Get On The Dance Floor

I don’t think I’ve ever danced as much as I did that night. The music was amazing and the energy in the room made me want to be as much of a part of it as I could. There weren’t too many slow songs, but during those I just danced with my friends or we kind of did our own thing as a group. And during all the fast songs, we were bouncing around and making sure everyone else got on the dance floor with us. I did have to sit down from time to time because of my hips and my legs still being sore from the race, but I danced so much that the pedicure I got for the wedding got all chipped! I’ve never done that from dancing before so I think that’s a sign that I had a wonderful time.

There was a break in the dancing for the cake cutting and bouquet toss (Rayshell did a toss bouquet that broke into a couple of smaller bouquets so multiple women were able to catch it).

Cake Cutting The Bouquet Toss

After the end of the traditional reception things, the party on the dance floor continued. I swear I got close to 10,000 steps in on my Fitbit just from dancing alone! I tried to get pictures with as many people as possible (it’s not the norm for us all to be dressed up and fancy so I wanted to document that), but I have to say that my favorite picture of the entire evening is one that I got of Rayshell and Paul.

Bride and Groom

It’s so clear how much they love each other and how much fun they had at the wedding. They seriously are an amazing couple and I hope that I’m able to find someone who loves me as much as they love each other.

Before we knew it, it was time for the reception to end. Some people went to the hotel across the street to hang out at the bar, but I was pretty tired and my feet were starting to hurt from all the dancing. So I ended up leaving after saying goodbye to everyone there.

I know I say this about all the weddings I go to, but this was the best wedding! It was so perfect for who Rayshell and Paul are and even though I know they throw amazing parties this took things to a new level!

Congratulations to Rayshell and Paul! You guys are so perfect for each other and I know you are going to live your happily ever after now.

And Rayshell, thank you so much for letting me be a part of so many celebrations  of yours. I feel so special that you wanted me to be there to celebrate with you and I have loved seeing you put this wedding together (and it ended up better than I ever could have imagined from what you had told me). I love you so much and thank you for being an amazing friend to me!

With Rayshell