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DAVINADEVINE's Recent Blog Entries

10 Minute-a-day Dance Challenge

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Hello Gang,

For many years I taught belly dance classes. I carefully chose music that I enjoyed and that helped to support my dance needs. I crafted dance class "sets" for each of my favorite topics, and I was always happy to give my student the current class playlist, so they could buy the music I used. One of the important themes in my class is dance to the same music until you've mastered the music, feel the music, or are driven mad by it.

I'm taking my own advice, and I'm going to do what I have always told my students, dance to the same music until I really know it. My first set is made of two songs:

Amulet (2005 edit) (2:40) by Natacha Atlas

Faddah (8min) by Hossam Ramzy

I'm going to dance to this every day until I Feb 1 - fun!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BLUE42DOWN 1/12/2013 11:39PM

Sounds fun!

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HELENWLMS 1/12/2013 7:55PM

    Sounds like fun!

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Time Flies...

Sunday, January 06, 2013

And so it came to pass that I got so involved with the chaos of a crashed personal economy, a quick move and then the top-to-bottom overhaul of my business. It's been go-go-go.. and frankly, it's time to slow down a bit and get things back in line.

After being gone for more than a year, I've come back because, frankly, I miss the sheer quantity of information I can find here. Although I've continued to lose weight on my own, I need a new injection of recipes, fitness tips and the community interaction. I've spent too much time with my head down and elbows up working on my business and my new book, that now it's time to carve out some energy to focus on my fitness goals.

So here we go.. back in the saddle.. or rather.. out of the chair!

Dawn Devine ~ Davina


Video doesn't lie...

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Well.. I had a performance - really my first public showing since losing about 40lb or so. I am having this strange moment of awareness of my body changing. I look down and see my breasts, but I no longer see a gut below. I look in the mirror and my clothes are hanging on me.. (I really need to shop, renovate and trade for some new ones!) and most of all, my dancing has improved. There is a lightness to my step and an ability to move as fast as I really WANT to.


And while I may find fault in my lack of subtlety or my choosing the wrong prop for the tempo (my double veils need faster music) I am so pleased with the fact that others could see and and made happy comments on my amazing transformation.

Best (or do I mean worst) of all, nothing fits! I cannot even tie my hip sashes without breaking threads.... And that, is a very good thing indeed!

~ Davina ~ Dawn Devine

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JAISAN1 8/14/2010 1:18PM

    Beautiful! I love seeing you dance! It is always a pleasure! emoticon

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DEBNICU 5/2/2010 12:07PM

    Congrats, keep up the good work.

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Change in Perspective - the body as transportation

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

I traveled 22 out of 28 days in February. And as a result - I've started to walk more.

During this orgy of travel, I went on a writers retreat in the UK. While I was there, I was struck with a massive revelation. My "thin" English friends ate heartily, drank a lot of beer and lived life to the hilt. So why were they thin? Big drum roll - because they use their body as transportation!

Throughout my two weeks in Cambridge, though I tasted a lot of new foods, I managed to lose 11lbs. Why? Because I couldn't hop in my car and drive! DUH - what a revelation. AND - if you've got a purpose - namely - getting from point A to point B and back again - your walk dose double duty - for transportation AND fitness.

Upon returning from this eye-opening trip, I started to integrate my chores and fitness together. Using my legs to get me from point A to point B rather than simply hopping in the car has lead me to take shorter, but more frequent walks. Need milk - walk to a store.. Need to mail a package - walk to the post office. Meeting someone for lunch - walk to the restaurant.

The body as transportation... Duh..
And now for some coffee --- off to the coffee shop!
~ Davina

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LEXUSIASIS 3/9/2010 1:44PM

    Such an eye opener when we travel. We all could leave our car keys behind and see where walking takes our weight. Thank you for sharing.

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Chop that Salad...

Saturday, March 06, 2010

I decided that I would start to "play" with my food.
I have a great formula for a Mediterranean Chopped Salad...
Some have called it Shirazi, but when I make Shirazi, I only use olive oil and lemon juice.

1 Cucumber - Cubed
2 Tomatoes (or one REALLY big one - try to equal the cucumber in volume) - Cubed
1 Bell Pepper - Cubed
1 Bundle of Green Onions - Cut in 1/4's the long way.. and then into 1" strips
1 Can Garbanzo Beans (Or white beans, cannelini beans, kidneys etc.) Drain + Rinse
Italian Dressing - Get a low-fat spicy version that appeals to you or make your own to taste
Additional seasoning - Sea Salt, Ground Black Pepper, Chives, Garlic
Garnish with Cheese - Feta gives a more Greek flavor - Mozzarella more Italian - Manchego - Spanish - Or a nice soft goat cheese..

I love to take this to pot-lucks with my dancer friends. It's healthy, low cal and high-fiber.
I leave of the cheese if I know there will be vegan friends there - or just put the cheese on the side to use as a "topping" if you're unsure.

However - I've recently taken this formula and started to kick it up and make it more interesting. Here are a list of some of the things that I have effectively added in the last two months worth of experimentation. I didn't add these things all at the same time.. but I would pick one or two.

Things to add crunch:
Jicama - I used my potato peeler to make long strips
Carrot - again using the potato peeler
Parsnip - potato peeler
Pepper - Use a slightly spicier pepper - I used a Santiago, Cubanelle, Banana or get hotter
Red Onion - Adds crunch and lots of flavor

Things to add saltiness:
Black Olives - a small can of crushed can or half a can of whole worked well.
Green Olives - stuffed with Pementos or Garlic
Persian Pickles - thinly sliced lengthwise
Salami - Pick your favorite - the answer is YUM.

Salad Dressing Alternatives:
Lemon and Olive Oil - Shirazi style (add mint to be totally authentic!)
Balsamic and Olive Oil - Makes it more Italian instantly. (Add Italian spice blend too)
Japanese Mirin + dash of Sesame oil - and then use edamame for the beans.

I found myself making bigger bowls.. making it very plain on Monday.. and then adding ingredients and flavors throughout the week. Adding the Cheese, Meat and Olives as toppings means I can change it up when ever I want.


~ Davina ~ Dawn Devine

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DAVINADEVINE 3/6/2010 12:34PM

    My husband reminded me that what he called "The Japanese Chop" had:

Diacon (Japanese Raddish)
Green Peper - thinly sliced
Napa Cabage - Thinly Sliced
Green Onions - Sliced the long ways
Soy Beans (Edemame)
Mirin (rice wine)
Salt + Peper

Leave out the tomato -

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SWEETPEA92 3/6/2010 12:16PM

    Yummmmmmmm, I am just learning to enjoy salads, and discovered Jimaca the other day, LOVE IT. Now it is a constant in my salads. I am amazed what you can put in one. I even put strawberries in mine. Like your recipe for sure, must try it!!! Thanks for sharing emoticon

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MOLEMANN13 3/6/2010 11:48AM

  I am going to try this recipe for my dinner tonight, we have a Bday party and plan to have a small piece of cake, so the salad will allow us to keep our dinner calories low....thanks for the recipe

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