Gratitude and Giving Thanks


I am thrilled to be teaching Bija Beat classes up at National Dance Institute (NDI) in Harlem each Tuesday evening November. I hope you'll join us.

"Service is the rent we pay for being. It is the very purpose of life, and not something you do in your spare time."

Marian Wright Edelman

Last month, leaders from the Associates of National Dance Institute (ANDI) gathered for our 2017 conference. It was inspiring to focus on the potential of our collective impact. Between the 12 organizations, we are sharing our extraordinary methodology with 100,000 children across the country, and over the past years have impacted millions - truly millions - by bringing uniquely engaging and motivating dance with live music into their lives.

A desire to live a life rooted in purpose made discovering NDI 26 years ago a kismet event.  The joy, creativity, community, love, and hope imbued upon working with NDI is positivity in motion. The past years have been filled with such unbelievably wonderful and affirming experiences - way too many to name. And, after working with NDI for over a decade, and teaching with NDI New Mexico on reservations and pueblos, I founded NDI’s sister program in Colorado, Celebrate The Beat (CTB). Having the opportunity to share this crazily effective and shockingly perfect methodology with talented artists has been the best gift ever.  As Marian Wright Edelman so beautifully articulates - serving others is life’s true purpose.  

In October, I directed a  residency at Place Bridge Academy, one of our 28 partner schools in Denver  - a school focused on responding to the needs of refugees. After the program’s culminating performance, a school administrator articulated a truth regarding NDI-inspired programs that I never tire of hearing: She said, “Now these parents can finally see what their children are capable of."

Giving students opportunities to experience themselves in ways they never dreamed possible changes their psyches and, as a result, truly does positively impact our world. 

Blessed, fortunate, grateful, overjoyed, relieved, ridiculously happy - these words can not even begin to describe how I feel about being able to share this work with those who most benefit most from it.


Tracy + The Bija Beat Family



one delicious meal with leftovers for an amazing salad the next day

simply delish baked chicken thighs
a package of hormone free chicken thighs
1 red onion chopped in chunky pieces
5 garlic cloves chopped
Maldon salt
olive oil (preferable Frantoia)

1. preheat the oven at 375 degrees and soak the chicken pieces in warm water, salt and lemon
2. dry with paper towel
3. put ‘em on tin foil on a baking sheet (zero cleaning this way)
4. cover those pieces with chopped onion, chunks of garlic, Maldon salt, pepper and olive oil
5. bake at 375 degrees until done and at the end put on broil so the top is crispy

baked butternut squash chunks
a package of pre cut butternut squash
1 red onion chopped
olive oil (preferable Frantoia)
Maldon salt

preheat the oven at 375 degrees, put the onions and squash in a pyrex, add the salt and pepper, slather with olive oil, mix it, bake it for about 45 minutes on 400 degrees.

forbidden rice and black beans
1 can of black beans
2 cups of cooked rice
1 red onion diced
6 garlic cloves sliced
Frantoia olive oil
Maldon salt

1. cook the rice following the directions on the box
2. saute the onions in olive oil for about 10 minutes
3. rinse the beans and add them
4. add the 1 cup rice (save the other for tomorrow’s salad), garlic, salt and pepper and stir and cook until every morsel is coated with olive oil

favorite leftovers salad
baked chicken pieces
baked butternut squash chunks
Raw Cashews