Happy Belated World Ballet Day!

World Ballet Day was yesterday, did you catch it? We were busy getting together orders and spending a beautiful day outside before Hurricane Matthew heads our way, but I have been catching up all morning. Here are some of my favorite videos from yesterday that ended up on YouTube 🙂 Let us know which parts were your favorite!

I have been obsessed with the Royal Ballet lately, so it’s really no surprise that they made this list….

The Australian Ballet also participated by allowing viewers a four hour look into their day. I haven’t finished yet, but I’m loving it so far.

Scottish Ballet did something a bit different and gave you an exclusive look into their tour rather than taking you through company class. They’re getting ready for a tour, and I’m not going to lie. I wish I was in Europe so I could see it in person. It’s a fascinating look into the choreographer-dancer dynamic during rehearsals.

Hope you enjoy them as much as I did! We’ll see you Monday for our regular blog post.



Why You Should be Following The Royal Ballet on YouTube

I’m weird. I’ll admit it. Since quitting ballet I have gone to a number of performances both of ballets and musical theatre shows and to be honest…I don’t really like them. Not that I don’t like them, but I always feel like there is something missing. And I know exactly what it is. I care more about the process than the final outcome. I do appreciate the artistry and the steps taken to get to the final, polished performance. I just miss the sweat, the imperfections, the work that goes into getting to the final result. I used to love watching the professional dancers, not in the first rehearsals where they were learning the piece (though seeing a piece being created is a completely different story) but in those where the steps were already in their bodies. The rehearsals that were my favorite were the ones once the girls were ready for practice tutus and perfecting the piece. The Royal Ballet’s series on YouTube allows for me to get my does of this. You get an insight into the ballets that they highlight, while also getting a peak into what a professional rehearsal looks like. Often accompanied by a live pianist, the director/choreographer, and a coach you are able to get a sneak peek into performances like Anastasia, Romeo and Juliet, Frankenstein, and so many more. They’re my favorite kind of rehearsals and once you get started watching, you’ll want to watch many many more.

Be sure to check out some of my favorites below:



Incentives Takes Charleston, SC!

Every year we find ourselves in Charleston for at least a couple of days. Whether we come for work or play, it’s an amazing time for the girls of Incentives Inc. to indulge a little bit. And boy, do we indulge. Charleston has amazing shopping (for the little sister), amazing architecture and character (for the mom), and even better food and views (for moi). Check out a little bit of our Charleston adventure below!


The view from dinner on our first evening. We found the Charleston Crab House after a quick Google search and were more than satisfied with the food and the sunset.


Relaxing with a book on the deck of our waterfront hotel.


This memorial sits right upon the pier that wraps around Charleston’s waterfront. It’s a great place to stop by while going on a walk or run in the area.


The waterfront pathway on our final morning there.


The cutest little vegan restaurant that we stopped in for brunch. This was the Gnome Cafe and is 100% vegan if that’s something that you’re into.


Gnome cafe decor.

Until next year, Charleston! You were lovely to us as always <3




Finding the Arts in Your Area

Since moving back home, I’ve been trying to figure out how to stay creative. While I do enjoy work and hanging out with my friends it’s been a weird transition. When I went off to college I wanted to focus on my studies…I ended up on a dance team after one semester. I went to the theater to see Romeo and Juliet and Swan Lake by the Joffrey.


I went to see Les Miserables when it came through the Auditorium theater. I went to art galleries, the Art Institute, the Museum of Contemporary Art. I saw performers on the train, murals on the sides of peoples homes and city buildings…


and now that I’m back home I find myself missing the artistry. As much as I love the suburbs, I’ve been missing certain aspects of being so close to a large city. And so, just in case anyone else is feeling the same, I figured that I would share a couple of ways that I’ve found to find the arts in your area.

  1. Look at local theater websites. Theaters have their performances booked for the upcoming season a full year in advance. Go to their websites or better yet, stop inside and pick up a booklet. See which performances catch your attention. Talk to the people working in the box office. See what their excited to see this upcoming season.
  2. Keep an eye out in coffee shops. There is always a bulletin board covered in flyers that I walk straight past on my way to get my cold brew. Stop, check it out. There may be a ton of stuff that you are uninterested in, but there will probably be an advertisement for some smaller performances that you may absolutely love. These also allow you to support smaller, local troupes that may not be able to afford performing at the larger theaters.
  3. Groupon, LivingSocial, etc. These websites are great because not only do they show you what’s happening around your city, but they give you great deals. Check out a new painting class, a new dance class, go to a concert, or just try out a new restaurant. You’ll have to sign up, but I promise you, it’ll be worth it.
  4. Check out your city’s website. Last, but certainly not least, there are often fairs or festivals in the area that you may not be aware of. The city is always going to want to support local artists, entrepreneurs, etc. Check out the special events area of your city’s official website. Do you have an Oktoberfest coming to you next month? What about a Fall for (insert your city here)? It may be worth it to see what’s going on in your area!

Hope this little guide to finding the arts in your city helped. Until next time!



Incentives Takes the Mountains of Georgia

It’s the start of a new school year, but I’m not dancing. I’m not in school anymore. Life is weird as a grown up. And while school traffic has extended my work commute ten minutes, and pictures of dancers getting back into the swing of things has filled up my Instagram, I’m trying to figure out how to still get a little dance in my life. I have yet to decide, but the good thing is now that I’m an adult…I get to mull it over with a good glass of wine.

This past weekend I got to get away to the mountains of Northern Georgia where believe it or not, wine is a huge thing. Muscadine grapes grow in abundance in the area but lucky for me muscadine wine is not the only option (because it certainly cannot beat a good Cab or Pinot Noir).


Stop 1: Yonah Mountain


Yonah means ‘bear’ in Cherokee and has absolutely breathtaking views. I was a little bit obsessed with the Rosé (pictured above)


Yonah makes most of their wine in the area, when they can’t…Pinot Noir, I’m looking at you. They order the best from California (Pinot Noir calls for a thinner-skinned grape that doesn’t grow well in our Southern humidity)


Other things I was obsessed with? The owner’s truck and the coconut scrub in the bathroom…not that you should go to a winery for the coconut scrub…but I definitely walked away with a tub


Stop 2: The Cottages


While definitely smaller and more homely than Yonah, the Cottages has (if it’s possible) even better views and the staff here is so incredibly kind.


My favorite wine here? The Cabernet Sauvignon. I would have taken a picture but it was too yummy for me to remember to do that.


After the cottages, we made a pit stop in Helen for a late lunch.


The veggie burger was alright, but I do highly recommend a black bean burger to anyone who is thinking about trying it.


And on our way back we saw Habersham and decided to top off our day of vineyards with a frozen peach bellini (I didn’t even mind the muscadine wine in it)

All in all. It was a very fun, tipsy trip, and now that I know what these three have to offer I cannot wait to try out some other vineyards around us!

Until next time <3



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A Review: The Painted Girls


I’ve been trying to get into reading a lot more. I’ve really missed it, and I miss making time for reading. With things like school, and friends, it’s really hard to prioritize reading. I have at least seven books on my to read list and it’s growing. Every time I walk into a Barnes and Noble, there’s another book added to my list. That was the case with The Painted Girls. I saw the book sitting on the $5.99 table. I loved the price, and I was also drawn in by the cover. There were dancers in the same style as Degas, and having danced a few dances inspired by his work, I was extremely interested.

Cathy Marie Buchanan transports her reader into Paris in the 1800s. She introduces three characters, sisters, living in poverty and trying to survive. The eldest, Antoinette, tries to find work to help her mother but is dragged instead into a world of romance, violence, and theatre. As her “bad boy” lover get into more and more trouble, you see her pull away from her family. She neglects her family for a boy. But is she being selfish? Or is she getting the chance to be a girl who loves a boy. For years she has had to mother her sisters, but she is not their mother. What obligations should she have to them? Then there is Marie. Marie is not pretty, in fact, she is described as brutish. She has long limbs and dark, unattractive features; and yet, when she dances there is something that awakens in her. It is what attracts Mr. Degas to her she becomes his painted girl and the model of his Little Dancer pieces.


 While Cathy Marie Buchanan paints a picture of the brute reality of circumstance for girls who constantly feel the pressure of being beautiful despite their circumstances, it is quite a frustrating piece. There are young girls in the uneasy position of needing patrons to survive but being young girls who have not been exposed to the world of riches and alcohol. The book makes you uneasy about the reality of the situation for these dancers, but it doesn’t really make you feel for the dancers either. The uneasiness felt was for the situations and that anyone had to deal with these issues but not necessarily for Marie or Antoinette.

I will say that this book is a page-turner. It’s a quick read and it’s interesting. I finished the book in an evening. But I can’t say that I felt for Marie or Antoinette in the end. Perhaps it was because I couldn’t relate to the girls. The book has gotten rave reviews and has a 3.61/5 rating on Goodreads. I wanted to know more about the rest of the cast of characters. The sisters seemed selfish and indulgent. They make poor decisions over and over again. They were driven at certain times by sibling rivalry and delusion. It was a good story. It was an enjoyable read. I just wasn’t as invested as I wanted to be. I wish the characterization had been better. (3/5)




Incentives Explores!

This weekend we had 30 degree weather in Chicago. While the rest of the nation was getting pummeled with snow, I was enjoying the sunny, balmy weather compared to the -15 degree weather that we’ve had. So I decided to go explore in Chicago for a bit. I’ve been here for almost four years but it’s so easy to forget how many cool things are around here. So my best friend and I went ahead to go have a tourist-y day and see some things that we’d never seen before.

Our first stop was the Chicago Architectural Center.


A view of the Lake including the Adler Planetarium.


A better view of Millenium Park and the Magnificent Mile.

After that we popped down a couple of blocks to go over to the Chicago Cultural Center.


I was obsessed with this ceiling.


And this light.

I was just very obsessed with the Cultural Center in general. The decor is beautiful, and the architectural is wonderful, and I wish that I could live there.


I was also obsessed with the lighting at Gilt Bar.

And then we popped by Gilt Bar for drinks because my friend decided that the ambiance was great. He was right, and the drinks were amazing!

See you guys next week!