Today’s Spread the Love: The Day! And if you have no idea what day I’m talking about, learn about Spread the Love first.
In no particular order and in all particular greatness, here are five people that inspire me by doing and creating things that deserve to be shared with someone. With everyone. With you.
Spread the Love: The Day
I first met Miranda at Ciao Bella, a boutique clothing and jewelry store she owns in Playas Del Coco, Costa Rica. Before we moved there, I had researched dance and yoga classes and found a single option for adult hip hop classes, which Miranda also happened to teach. Having a conversation with Miranda is a lot like listening to the Beastie Boys… it just makes you feel excited to exist. In addition to being an extremely talented ballet, modern, jazz, hip hop, and break dancer (rad!), she’s also a choreographer, yoga instructor, workshop leader, shop owner and author. Miranda is one of the most creatively driven, socially active, we-can-change-the-world kind of people I’ve ever met, and it’s an infectious kind of feeling just being around her. In a nutshell, Miranda’s well-rounded, folks. Well. Damn. Rounded.
When she decided to make a trip back home to Canada with her family, she gave me the opportunity to substitute her Creative Movement and Drama classes at the local elementary school and had great insight about what motivates children to want to perform, a skill which isn’t necessarily a high priority in Costa Rica. Her newest venture, called Dance Equations, is a program designed to help children learn mathematical concepts through dance. How sweet is that?! I’m excited to see what’s to come from Miranda and hope we meet again. Show your support for Dance Equations on Facebook and check out her eBook, Beyond Movement.
Chi Chi Randolph
Chi Chi was the first Austin hip hop teacher I took class from that really knew what the hell was going on. After taking a series of disappointing classes at dance studios around the ATX, I was pleasantly surprised to find a studio, and choreographer, that offered performance opportunities for adults on a level that was still challenging and fun.
What’s more impressive is that Chi Chi, the owner of said dance studio, has a degree in Industrial Engineering and an MBA. Say whaaa? After trying out the engineering gig for a while, Chi Chi chose to quit and pursue a career in dance, which led to stage performances with Nelly, Fabolous, Nas, Trey Songz and the Black Eyed Peas during Super Bowl Halftime.
She’s currently teaches and choreographs at Dance Austin Studio, as well as organizes and hosts special events like Dance to Breathe, an Austin choreographer’s ball benefiting the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. If you’re into dancing, check her out and go take a class! If you’re not, go watch a show and enjoy hot girls gettin’ down. Either way, it’s a win.
I’ve only met Jordan a couple sporadic times, usually at mutual friends’ parties in Austin, but there’s a couple reasons he deserves your recognition. First of all, he has fantastic hair. As a white girl with naturally curly hair, I am envious of white dudes with naturally curly hair who can somehow coif it into wild awesomeness, and he has done it. It’s a skill. Trust me.
Also, as a more solid testament to his talent, he recently opened a business in Austin called Growler Domestics in which he creates things made out of wood. Have you ever created things out of wood? Me neither, but I’m certain it’s difficult and takes an intense amount of patience. Check out his seriously beautiful house decor, like headboards, coffee tables, light fixtures, and jewelry, all of which is salvaged, re-purposed and handcrafted by Jordan himself.
Visit Growler Domestics online or see his work in person at UrbanSpace Interiors, Frank Restaurant, HandleBar and more in Austin, Texas. Also, if you meet him, make sure to say hello to his new baby pig, Mu.
If you don’t love Brianne Murphy, you have never met Brianne Murphy. Never have I ever known someone who makes every single person around them so genuinely happy. She is equally adorable, hilarious, honest and enthusiastic and someone that inspires me to be generally more creative and spontaneous on the daily.
Even though we only spent less than a year living in the same city, girlfriend and I had some times I’ll never forget, including beers in the bathroom of a 5 star hotel, mooning strangers (and friends) on the steps of the Texas State Capitol and sliding down stairs on a food tray we stole from a restaurant.
When she’s not busy being the much cooler version of California Barbie you never knew existed, Brianne is a true artist. From wooden collages to planting flowers in roller skates to hand carving a wooden sign for my birthday that reads “My milkshake brings all the boys to the yard,” I am one lucky person for knowing the light in the sky that is Brianne Murphy. She also happens to be the happiest bill collector in the world. It’s almost worth taking out that extra credit card.
Alright, alright. I know it’s showing favoritism to pick my own boyfriend, but this is still my blog, right? I make the rules here. I think. Besides, I really am proud of Sir Boyfriend Rimkus. This year, he has successfully worked as a scuba dive instructor in Costa Rica and a portrait photographer in Maui. If you’ve ever spent countless hours working at a desk, you can assume that your workday must be slightly more interesting when it requires goggles or sunsets on the beach.
And not that I didn’t think he was talented before, but seeing him in the water is like seeing a cupcake with frosting… it just makes sense. I’m fairly convinced he’s part merman, part turtle whisperer. You can check out more of his underwater photography at Two Tank Photo. Heyo!
Plus he makes me eggs, dances in the mornings and loves me, so there’s always that. But seriously, boyfriend’s got skills. Check ’em out.
And that’s it. It’s your turn. You don’t have to write it down, you don’t have to tag them on Facebook, you don’t have to do anything if you don’t want to. But these are people I think you all should know and who deserve recognition for making the world a more beautiful place.
Also, remember that this year’s Spread the Love Day includes an added clause. You must choose one person, from your list or someone else’s, and do something for them. It can be a small act or a big act, and you can decide how, when and where you complete this portion of the project, but the important thing is that you help someone else directly.
Thank you to everyone who participated, shared, read, inspired and was inspired. Let’s keep the world a lovely place.