things that don’t go together


A weekend in a hotel for the Hollywood Vibe Dance Convention and Competition and YOU have to study and take the online portion of your Neonatal Resuscitation Program renewal test. Doesn’t that sound like a workable thing? Oh, I forgot, you are bringing along your 12 year old boy because your darling husband is working through the weekend. You know, the sweet boy of yours with sensory processing issues? Don’t forget that your grandgirl, who also dances, will be there for part of the weekend too.

No! YOU thought this would be totally easy and doable.

Of course you did. Until you got there at the hotel…where the dance convention is being held…crowded with lots of other families from lots of other dance studios there…with lots and lots of very excited kids because OMG!!! Kent Boyd is here too!!!! A lot of dance moms were overly excited too. Still, you imagine this will be doable. The kids will be in dance classes from 7:30 AM until well into the afternoon and then they dance competitively through the night until around midnight all weekend long. You’ll have time for sure you tell yourself.

Heh!

Did you forget the son you brought along?

But there’s a pool. He can swim. He has video games. He can keep himself entertained while you are studying and logging on to take that 9 part test. He’s a good boy. Your husband will be picking him up Saturday afternoon. You end up repeating that last sentence over and over again because he is a 12 year old boy and the last thing he wants to do is entertain himself. Your husband will be picking him up Saturday afternoon…

Did I forget to tell you that there is a hockey tournament happening here too and there are all kinds of hockey teams here with hockey players the same ages as all those dancers? Oh, and with hockey teams come hockey parents. Hockey parents who are more than okay with letting their kids play hockey IN THE HOTEL ROOM NEXT TO YOURS in the evening…until you asked them not to because it sounded like someone was being murdered in the next room which distracted you from studying and REALLY stressed out your 12 year old…the one with sensory processing issues. Apparently hockey dad didn’t think this was a problem until you told him that you thought that it might be…so he sends the kids out into the hall to play hockey. Yes. Because apparently on every floor there are kids playing hockey. They are also playing hockey in the hotel lobby too while their parents are doing celebratory shots Saturday night because their kids won the tourney.

YEAH Junior Kings!!!

Did I forget to tell you that the Internet connection is very spotty? The Internet connection you have to pay for because of course this hotel isn’t going to offer complimentary wi-fi to their guests.

So the connection keeps dropping while you are taking your test. There are hockey games, loud hockey games happening everywhere. Your son wants to go back to the pool an hour after he decided that he was tired of swimming but can’t possibly wear the swim trunks he wore because he wore them and they are wet. Any parent with a kid on the Spectrum gets that. If you don’t get that all I can say is, I’m sorry. Your grandgirl is REALLY upset because she can’t go swimming because her day is filled with dance classes and dance competition. You’re very thankful that your dancer is old enough to get herself to and from her dance classes but there are still the dances she is dancing in…and the grandgirl is dancing in. What kind of dance mom/mima would you be if you didn’t watch these kids dance?

You know what? None of this mixes well together at all.

Not.

At.

All.

So the next time you find yourself in hotel with your kids for a dance convention and there are also lots of hockey teams there too with hockey kids and hockey parents and you have work you must do for work that requires Internet access DON’T DO IT!!!

Just don’t.

Dance convention and competition is enough. It really is.

I know that my dancers think so. Hang in there girls…only five more hours to go then we go home.

YEAH!

Excuse me, I have to get back to trying to take my test before the wi-fi cuts out again.

 

musings and rants of just another dance mom


Before I begin, and before anyone jumps to conclusions after only reading the title, note that these musings and rants could likely be applicable to almost any band mom, soccer mom, baseball mom, football mom, mathalete mom, choir mom, theater mom, debate team mom, cheer mom, __insert child’s extra-curricular activity here__ mom…or dad.

There you are at the latest competitive activity for your awesome child. You are happy, You are proud. You are a little teary because your baby is up there performing her all…and it is the last year for you both. Your kid is awesome! The awards and scholarships they are awarded confirms what you already know but it is still nice to see other people, people whose education and experience makes them qualified to have such an opinion agree with you. So you clap enthusiastically and cheer loudly as she performs and during awards because it makes everything that goes into making this moment possible so worth it.

But then you see what is the embarrassment of riches awarded to the bigger studio/team. Truly you don’t begrudge their achievement because the talent, the originality, the creativity is there so the excess is well deserved. You just wish some of that surplus was weighing down your kid too.

You’re only human.

But would it be worth it? Would your kid have the same opportunities there competing with so many other equally talented and hard-working kids? Perhaps not. Dancers have left the little studio before with the hopes and dreams of this happening only to not make the cut to be part of the elite at the bigger studio because it often requires much more than just talent and ability. It’s happened before, a number of times before that you have seen.

Through the years, you have witnessed your awkward, knobby knees and elbows kid, who could barely keep the beat, emerge into a talented force to be noticed when she takes the stage whether it be jazz, lyrical, hip-hop, pointe or, her first love, tap. When you witness instructors or dancers from other studios make their way over to compliment your dancer or even have teachers from a rival studio tell you that they loved watching your kid on stage dancing the part of Cinderella you know you made the right decision. Of course the decision was not wholly yours as your dancer made it clear where she wanted to train and learn too.

Still, this weekend you couldn’t help feeling just a little bit of pangs of jealousy because what parent supporting their child’s dreams doesn’t wish for them to be regarded as more than a “Triple Threat” up on that stage and every other stage they may take? Until your kid witnesses the director of another studio angrily wave a six year old off the stage for briefly forgetting choreography and glancing off stage in his direction…and then yelling at the poor little kid backstage…a six year old! Some might ascribe to this Abby Lee-esque tactic of teaching and coaching but seeing first hand the growth and success your dancer has realized you find yourself nodding in agreement with multi-award winning dancers, teachers and choreographers, Derek Hough and Mark Ballas who both maintained that …correct teaching is patience, discipline, confidence building and love..and Miller (and others like that -my words) needs a reality check. Dance is meant to be fun and inspirational, not abusive.

And if that wasn’t enough for you to say to yourself that, yes, we don’t need to be a part of that; there are some of the families, decked out in all the studio gear that identifies who they are and where they come from behaving badly. Case in point, if you’re going to loudly demand a woman with an infant move out YOUR SEAT because there is nothing in and around your seat to indicate that it is yours, you might want to take note that everyone sitting around your seat knows who you represent because of what you are wearing.
Yes, that happened.
The same would go for the other families on your team who insisted all Sunday morning to stand in the front of the auditorium searching for the perfect place to sit, blocking the view of the audience behind them from seeing the dance happening on stage at that very moment. Again, wearing the studio gear makes it very easy to identify who you are and who you represent, especially when all of you are repeatedly asked by many in the audience to please sit down or wait until the dance on stage is done. Everyone gets that you want a good seat to see your child/grandchild/friend on stage but to block the views of families anxious to see their child/grandchild/friend dancing on stage at that very moment?
Really?!
You ask yourself who is that rude? Then you ask yourself if you would want to be identified as part of that…would you want your kid to be a part of that?

Of course the answer is no.

And so you let go those little pangs of jealousy because it was a good weekend for your daughter who dances with all the gold, high gold and special judges’ awards and the scholarship that she is taking home as proof of that. Even more so, her saying out loud, “This was a great weekend!“, makes it so.

princess meetup


“It’s Cinderella!”

This weekend, Fallon saw Cinderella dance on stage with some of her princess friends including: Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Belle, Ariel and Pocahontas. But the only one she noticed, the only one she saw, the only one she cared about was Cinderella.

“It’s Cinderella!”, she cried as she was jumping up and down pointing at the stage with excitement.

Hazel tried to correct her, telling her that it was Jodie but Fallon was not buying that…I mean big sisters sometimes do tell tall tales.

“It’s Cinderella!”

Do you want to meet Cinderella?“, I ask Fallon. Her eyes widened as she pondered the possibility that she could meet Cinderella! I get that. Cinderella has always been my favorite princess too.

Best!

Day!

Ever!

And Jodie, er, Cinderella came off stage and made her way to where we were sitting and knelt down and hugged Fallon…as a princess would do.

Sorry, no picture of that magical moment; but if you close your eyes…

See it!

Magic, is it not?

what else would I be doing but juggling…pinning!


Another weekend, another dance competition in the This Is My Last Year As A Dance Mom tour.

Whoo-hoo!!

A friend and fellow dance mom complimented me today on how Jodie does such a great job organizing her own costumes and manages her own quick…very quick…costume changes in between dances. She added that while she (and the other moms) are running around like crazy helping their kids with their quick changes and organizing their multi pieces of costuming,
it often always several pieces, small pieces because of course one will be temporarily misplaced usually in a darkened auditorium ten minutes before your kid has to be back stage ready for the next dance
I am the mom sitting there in the auditorium keeping busy on my iPad. My friend smiled telling me how impressed she is with Jodie managing all of that.

What my friend doesn’t see is that in between dances and costume changes, Jodie usually tosses the costume pieces, garment bag and shoes at me as she heads backstage for the next dance. She often will direct me to get the next costume ready for when she comes back as she is running away. So I put the costume pieces back into the garment bag…all the little gloves and hair pieces too as well as the shoes because god forbid I lose any of this in the darkened auditorium where no food or drink is permitted with the sticky floor from food and drink. THEN I go back to whatever I’m doing on my iPad like reading or re-reading something like Nicholas and Alexandra or a random news site that I frequent or playing Words with Friends (Nicurnmama) or pinning stuff on Pinterest because what else would I be doing during the butt-numbing time I spend waiting for Jodie and her team members to take the stage?

Of course this weekend I will be pinning. I might be pinning a lot. We shall see. In the meantime, here is what was pinteresting to me this week.

So Zazzle gave me a gift certificate for my birthday just because and I’m thinking this is the T for me.

I made this for our St. Patrick’s Day dinner and it was delicious!

This is amazing and yes, I’m working on the tricky part…all the time.

Then I found this and I had to pin it because, after all, she is my favorite princess. Perhaps even more so now.

These scrubs. The census needs to go up so I won’t be put on call so I can wear these to work because these scrubs are perfect.

This because of Mondays and days just like Mondays. I don’t imagine that I can use it at work but that’s okay.

I could imagine this in Daniel’s room except when I consider the number of Hot Wheels that he has, I don’t believe that he has nearly the wall space. Still. How cool!

Mock us Dance Moms if you must, but you will be needing us during the Zombie Apocalypse. Count on it.

God only knows what I will run across on the web that I must pin because it’s amazing, I want to make it, eat it, wear it, do it or just want it this weekend. We shall see.

Or perhaps I will try to study for my NRP renewal…in a dark and loud auditorium.

 

 

 

fresh taps


Only a dancer can appreciate how beautiful a brand new pair of tap shoes are fresh out of the box.

Well, the parent of a dancer can appreciate it too…after she is done grousing about what a pain in the butt it has suddenly become to find this certain type of black jazz flexed sole tap shoes…especially for children with tiny, narrow feet.

But that’s another story.

I think that this just might be the last pair of tap shoes that I bought for Jodie.

Perhaps.

I warned y’all that this will likely be a season of lasts.

Maybe.

We shall see.

The first competition of the season went fairly well. Yes, there was a little drama, a lot of stress, hugs, kisses and a few tears but up on that stage our Dance Stars shined.

And the Dance Mom/Mima of these two stars couldn’t ask for anything more.

Now if we could just get over our after-competition-hangover with a little lost-hour-thank-you-Daylight-Savings stirred in for good measure. Thank goodness for Spring Break and staycation!