Archive for Video

Tips for Staying Younger

Think of this as  aRoundJoy UNPLUGGED…Tips for Staying Younger

If you know me, then you are aware I don’t act my age!  A couple of  years ago I made some videos and I’d like to get back to doing more of them soon…this first one was from 2013 and I have a few more in this series over on my YouTube channel.

In this first installment of “I’m Jus’ Sayin” I explain little tips on how I keep my mind, body and spirit youthful! It’s the little things that count!


What do you do to keep a youthful attitude? Do you feel like age is JUST A NUMBER and we really can BE younger if we keep a spunky spirit?

Well, you now know a few examples of how & why I do it…and I have no regrets, because I feel pretty great most of the time!

I’ll continue doing more of these videos occasionally to really tell you how I feel about lots of things, some hoop-related…and SOME NOT! If you have a topic you want to see me talk about, let me know by commenting below, on my Facebook page or even over on the original  YouTube  video itself!

If you haven’t already signed up for my email community, then complete the box at the bottom of this page and JOIN US! You’ll have FULL, exclusive access to even more aRoundJoy that only email subscribers enjoy, including valuable 4 hoop instruction videos and tips! The REAL magic happens THERE, so I’d love for you to sign up!

Stay Young, Be Joyful…and as always…

Happy Hooping!

~ g


The NEW HoopShack: What’s Up?

It’s been a busy month moving out of the warehouse and into the new studio. My husband has been working extremely hard and I am so very grateful. We should be entirely moved out of the old location by the end of July. For the rest of this month, I’m teaching at the new location as I book appointments and packing/moving when I am not teaching!

Here’s what it looks like so far at the new studio…a quick virtual 360 tour!



As you can see, the space has enough room comfortably for a few of us, so my sessions will be geared toward smaller groups and private clients. We also have plenty of room outside to hoop in the adjacent parking lot, since there are some drills I will want to review with students that involve walking, etc. We will step outside, only as needed, to review these type things for a few minutes. During pleasant weather in the fall and spring, I can see us spending some of our session time outside to take advantage of the open area right outside our door, especially on the weekend when the surrounding business vehicles are not there!

Whenever I have the need for a larger space, I am partnering with the Salvation Army Youth Education Town  to use the gym when needed for bigger group sessions and special events in the future.

Right now I am available for private instruction as needed and my schedule is pretty flexible, so don’t hesitate to call. Initially, I will still be offering 3 weekly, small group classes for experienced students, which I expect to start by mid-August. These will be aRoundJoy® HoopTensity™ and aRoundJoy® Drills & Skills. Once we see how the space is working for us, I can adjust accordingly to the demand at the studio and the need of my clients. NEW aRoundJoy® students will make an appointment for private instruction and there are several options available to do this training, either alone or with others. I explain all the details on my FAQ’s page and new pricing is also available on my SHOP page.

Hope everyone is staying cool this summer! One thing is for sure…The NEW HoopShack is VERY cool, in MORE ways than ONE!

You can see more pictures HERE.

Let me know what you think? I’d love to hear from you!

Hooping Video: It’s ALL About the PELVIS!

Yeah, hooping is often associated with gyrating your hips! Admit it. When you first think of a hula hoop, you think of that motion, as the hoop is spinning on your body.

Truth is, I try to get EVERYONE away from those thoughts. Actually, if you want to waist hoop, you have to LEARN how to CONTROL the hips and PELVIS! That one concept is a REAL “light bulb” moment for many. As soon as you figure out how to PUSH the hoop properly, which involves the correct pelvis “tilt” and positioning, it’s your gateway to more fun with your hoop. Then, from the waist, you can learn to PUSH  the hoop and talk to it with your pushes, making it go up and down your torso. It takes proper instruction, patience, time, practice and allowing yourself to let go, to trust that you CAN get it eventually! You WILL learn how, you will get better and you will get the muscle memory to control all of it, including the hoop AND your pelvis!

You DO get to move your pelvis in a more “dance” kinda way with hip-hooping, too…but you must become successful at waist hooping first, to be a proficient hip-hooper…so waist hooping is key, pelvic control is what designates whether the hoop is on the hips or waist, ALL that takes practice, practice, practice…and MUSIC makes all the practicing sheer JOY!

You can have FUN, fun with great songs all along the way while gaining you’re skills, plus it makes the time fly. If you LOVE music like I do and want to hoopdance to it, it’s a GREAT motivator.

Finding music that really makes you want to groove isn’t hard…and when I find something new, I get excited and must share!

Enter this little diddy from Vintge Trouble…”Pelvis Pusher”…and don’t think I am sharing just because it’s an awesome tune…just watch…you’ll see why I especially love it!



Pretty great, huh??

How’d I find them? Well, I make no secret of claiming loud and proud that I love me some Mingo Fishtrap. Thanks to them and their family/friends/fans over the last few years, I discover more artists with the same soul and blues vibe…like VT here, with the spirit of James Brown mixed in…music that makes you want to get up and move your…well, you get the idea!

So, go ahead…push that pelvis…and do it with a hoop…

(but PLEASE let me know if you need to LEARN how! It’s my favorite thing to teach!)


*you can find Vintage Trouble “Pelvis Pusher”  available on their websiteiTunes





aRound Autism Awareness and JOY

April is Autism Awareness Month, one of my favorite times of the year. In the past I have had hooping events to promote awareness. This year, however, I will be sharing more of my family’s personal story aRound autism, writing more blog posts and showing you more pictures from our lives. As many of you know, my youngest son, Kyle, is on the spectrum, diagnosed at the age of 3 with moderate-to-severe autism. Many of you reading this, as well, might be surprised by this, because you have met him in person or feel like you know him via pictures I proudly post on Facebook. Perhaps you know what he is doing now with nonPareil Institute at the age of almost 26 and are pretty surprised he was ever “moderate-to-severe,” so that’s what I want to explain more about. Our journey was not easy, but we did the best we could with what we had available. It’s high time I start getting busy sharing hope to other families out there. It’s a mission so close to my heart that I will be spending more time doing this from now on, even once April has passed.

If you haven’t already heard the news recently, you will begin to hear the staggering statistics about autism once again, since it’s April. Every year about this time, we are reminded. It’s alarming and concerning how many children are getting diagnosed. The media surrounding all this is anything but hopeful. It makes me sad for the families out there, just like we were years ago. Lost, sad, wondering, hungry for any morsel of information on autism other than the movie RAINMAN. We didn’t have all the doom and gloom being plastered in front of us on the TV news, though. Occasionally, it was in magazines, like TIME and NEWSWEEK, but even then, it was sporadic. So we were left to just listen to our gut instincts. That’s what we did. They say “ignorance is bliss”…in our case, I am so very grateful we didn’t have access to very much back then. It made choices easier…we had to take a chance on some things many times because it was the only choice at the time anyway! “Less is more” really applied.

I look forward to writing more in this month and beyond. Look for my posts over on my Facebook. Be sure to share all this information with friends and family who might need some encouragement when dealing with autism. Unfortunately, the numbers of cases being diagnosed is now 1 in 68 children, which means chances are likely if you are reading this right now, you know a family dealing with autism. Encourage…help…inform…

Please share our family’s story with others, remember to to stay joyful about autism and help others do the same. I, more than anyone, know that it is HARD to “put on a happy face” when living in the shadow of autism. I wasn’t always happy and smiling when my kids were little, I can assure you. I was DOWN and sad…A LOT. I know now that I wished I had been happier sooner, but point is, I did get happier over time. All I can do is try to help some other parents and family members…at least by sharing more openly, it might help someone shift from only thinking about the negative things surrounding autism. Good things CAN happen and DO happen. Read a summary of our story HERE.

I’ll leave you with a couple of videos, one is a look back and the other was from an awards ceremony a few weeks ago. I’ll also share a couple of quotes. You can see how far my son has come, where he is going and how joyful the future CAN be for autism. There’s a frontier being explored and pioneers blazing a path. Stay tuned for lots more stories and information!




Comment from a friend,  Jared Latimer:

“I think nonPareil is awesome. I personally do not believe we as a society treat Autism, ADD, or ADHD (thought they are different), appropriately. I think each one offers gifts, talents, and abilities that appropriately utilized can be great assets. Instead of trying to ‘treat’ we should teach on how to use. Just as the article mentions autistic workers can thrive in high tech jobs, ADD and ADHD people can thrive in creative jobs (think Pixar). I think nonPareil Institute is on the right track. Imagine what this world would be if we found benefits to various “disabilities” and focused on maximizing and harnessing those instead of trying to ‘treat’ the differences.”

YouTube video comment:

Ma’am, your son Kyle is my instructor at nonPareil Institute. He works harder than anyone I’ve ever met at that age. He’s helped me in ways that no college teacher ever could. I am very happy to have him as an instructor, just as you are very proud to have him as a son.

The Oprah Connection

December 17th , 2007 is a day I’ll always remember.

It was the busiest day of the year at the Post Office. Just like the day we had yesterday. You know, the day that every news station does a story about how long the lines are for everyone mailing holiday gifts. I didn’t care. I was on a mission. I had a VERY important package to send off that day.  I actually ANNOUNCED to the entire crowd in line that MY package was headed to Chicago and was going to win me a seat in Oprah’s studio audience! Yeppers, and everyone cheered and wished me luck! No lie! It really helped lighted the mood in our local, crowded postal facility that afternoon!

Yes, I had found out three days before that Oprah was having a contest to snag a seat in her audience for an upcoming show featuring my favorite performer, Bette Midler. All I had to do was send in a video explaining why I was Bette’s Biggest fan.

Well, that would be EASY, right?

Think again. I had NEVER filmed myself in front of a camera…EVER! I knew that’s what some folks were doing to get into the audience for other shows I had seen…but how could do I I do it? I didn’t feel competent enough to work our video camera very well.

I thought to myself,  “I have got to try this, though, because I love me some Bette AND I really wanted to go to a taping of Oprah before she stopped doing the show…what have I got to lose? I should at least attempt to do it!”

So, I decided  to give it a try, and I dove head first into making my very first video to send in to the the show’s producers at Harpo. How NUTS was I?? What I didn’t know was how much it would impact my life.

Now, I won’t go into the fact that I had to stumble through the actual process since I insisted to do it on my own, for the most part. I didn’t want to bother my husband too much with my silly plan. I had only two days to film edit and mail off a video tape. Let’s just say I didn’t sleep much that weekend. I also won’t delve into the details of how I sent everyone I knew in my life an email and asked them to write the producers, on my behalf. I will just tell you one little story…

I met a woman because of my Oprah show experience. No, not Oprah. No, not even the Divine Miss M. Being in the audience for the show was wonderful, but it’s another audience member I met that day who really helped me. I really feel it was a blessing to have had the chance to randomly meet her, too.

This video explains how I met Megan Castran.  I came across a couple of her YouTube Jewelchic videos about 6 years ago, but the story doesn’t stop there. As you will see, finding her has everything to do with how I took off on my hooping journey. Actually, had it not been for my trip to The Oprah Winfrey Show,  I may not ever have had the chance to meet her, much less start teaching hoopdance. She helped open my eyes to bigger possibilities.



Along our path, we meet others who we are just suppose to meet. We may not see the reason until much later. You have heard me speak of others besides Megan. I will never get tired of talking about all the wonderful people who have come into my life, and this won’t be the last post about who I hold near and dear to my heart.  I challenge you to look at your life and relationships in the same way. When you do, you see more of the good and less of the bad. You realize how blessed you are instead of what you might be lacking , or feel you are lacking.

Our relationships are a gift. This time of year, I think it’s a good idea to thank EVERYONE we know for being in our life, for being a treasure to us. What an easy gift to give…

Since it is an anniversary of sorts for me, that brings up memories of how I met a special person, I simply thought it would be a nice time for a long-overdue shout out to her!

Keep shining bright, Megan! I’m so grateful we connected!

hugs ~ g