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I got my 2010 series inspiration from my childhood. I loved dancing, but growing
up on a farm in South Africa did not give me much opportunity to take dance lessons; I actually do
not think it was even an option in those days! Charlene was born when I was 26 and when at
age 3 she started dancing lessons (ballet, tap, modern etc.). I fulfilled my love for dancing through
her enjoyment. After my children started school a few friends and I would perform and dance at
school functions and concerts, which was the start of my dancing career. When Charlene was in
high school we were in the same dance class and for the first time I was living my dancing and
loving it - as in LOVING it!

When we moved to the USA in 1996 I was so focused on survival and to keeping my family alive
that I had to pack my dancing shoes away. Charlene also had to work hard and study to start a
career for her own, so did all the other 3 children. I recently became the “honorary” Grandmother
to the two children of Marelize, another South African living in Gainesville, FL. I just bought Alaina,
the eldest little girl and 3 years old, her very first ballerina outfit, shoes and tights as she started
dancing lessons this year. So here we go again, the “Circle of Life”. Just looking at them and seeing
them dancing and seeing how much they still have to learn in life, made me decide to do a
series of ballerinas this year.

I’ve loved dancing all my life and decided on a “Dancing with Grace” theme for the 2010 series.

The meaning of “Grace” is “seemingly effortless beauty or charm of movement, form or proportion”.

Maybe it is something that we all as a human beings can strive for in life, because “Grace” also
means “favor or blessing”.

I think that to dance and to move with the music makes you forget about the difficulties in life,
you can visualize yourself in a different world and just be your best self. It teaches you to know
that you can do extraordinary things. It is a good workout, just as “Laughing” is.
So let’s dance our way through 2010.