Monday, June 29, 2009

Rhys Glows!

Every year, the second grade classes put on a musical production called "Glow!". Each one of my kids have been in this production, but because life is what it is, I never got to see my girls when they had their turn to be in "Glow!". (Showings of this show are always during normal school hours.) José went to see Sawyer when she was in it, and a friend videotaped Kellan's turn, but I never got a chance to experience the magic of "Glow!" for myself.

Until this year. I vowed that no matter what, I would see Rhys, my baby, in "Glow!". Even if I had to take a sick day at work, I would not miss this. I asked the music teacher the first week of school when "Glow!" was going to be, and she looked at me like I was crazy, and said, "Um, sometime in spring??"

Rhys was excited to be in "Glow!" and he took the whole experience very seriously. He worked hard on his costume, and practiced regularly. He listened to his sisters' advice, and counted down until the performance, asking me over and over if I was planning on being there. I was, I had a colleague cover for me.

Gosh, it was so cute. The kids were all so adorable and earnest, and the play had a good message (everyone is important). Of course, I cried.

Check out Rhys in "Glow!"

Hmmmm, it was so good, I will probably have to make it a point to see Abby's performance in two years...


Sawyer as Jack

In my last post before I decided to not write for several months, I went on and on about Sawyer owning the part of Jack Skellington. And her actual performance was amazing. It gave me chills. Her confidence, and how comfortable she was on stage, in front of hundreds of people, simply blew me away. She hadn't rehearsed with the microphone, but she showed no awkwardness. She simply shines onstage, and and revels in the limelight. And since I have spent most of my life shying away from the limelight, and really never having the courage to even ever seek the limelight, I admire her ability to make it look so effortless.

The video I took is not all that great - I borrowed my friend Patty's camera, and didn't turn it off after the performance. There is a good 30 seconds of black. Also, I would get so entranced watching my daughter perform, that the camera would drift. So, the video quality is poor. As Sawyer told me, my camera work was a great big FAIL.

But here it is, enjoy!


Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Talent Show

This spring, Pima Elementary held a talent show. There hadn't been a talent show held for years, not since I have been there, at least, and I was happy with that. I am not a fan of talent shows. The judging and the heartbreak...I think it is just not appropriate for elementary school kids. I mean, they have to deal with enough ridicule and peer pressure every day, why throw a talent show into the mix to give children more opportunity to be cruel?

Ok...had a bad talent show experience in grade school. It's not obvious, is it?

So, Kellan informs me one day she is going to audition for the talent show. My heart skips a few beats, and my stomach knots up, but I try to be upbeat and supportive as I strangle out a "That's awesome, sweetie!" She informs me that she is going to sing by herself, has already picked out the song, ("Sally's Song" from Nightmare Before Christmas) and that she and Sawyer have already picked out the right version of the song for her to sing to, as well as worked out a little bit of choreography.

This is typical Kellan. She doesn't feel the need to run her decisions by me first. She always tells me after the fact that she has auditioned for parts. She sings with Pima Singers (the school's chorus) and they have two big productions a year. Without fail she auditions for everything. With Sawyer, there is preparation and nerves. With Kellan, it's "Oh, I tried out for Wendy and I got the part of the Mother, and I am so excited and I am also going to be a pirate." Maybe she knows that I am on pins and needles on audition day, and she is sparing me the worry. Actually, she has amazing self confidence, and doesn't need me to be her cheerleader.

The only reason I was informed of the audition for the talent show was because auditions were being held after school, and some carpool rearranging needed to happen.

So, audition day comes. I am literally sick to my stomach. I hear that there are several adults, both parents and teachers who will be judging the auditions. What will their criteria be? How sad will Kellan be if she is not chosen? God, I HATE talent shows.

When I picked up Kellan after her audition, she was exhilerated. She thought it went really well and was just happy to have been a part of the process. I looked around, and was absolutely blown away by how many kids were auditioning. I have known some of these kids since they were babies, and would never in a million years thought they would have wanted to audition for a talent show. Kids had formed bands, created magic acts and dance numbers, and were excited to be able to perform. Wow. Ok, maybe this talent show wasn't the horrible idea I thought it was...

Kellan made the talent did everyone who auditioned. It was huge event held over two nights. The teachers responsible for making this talent show happen worked closely with the kids during after school rehearsals, making sure they knew their cues, knew their material, and were supportive of each other.

This talent show wasn't about choosing who was the best. It was about giving these kids the self confidence to be able to get up in front of a room full of people. It was about doing your best. It was about supporting your friends. It was about having fun. All huge life lessons that these kids now have under their belts. Kudos to the amazing teachers that worked incredibly long hours during the last month of school to give this valuable experience to my child.

And now, I really am not all that against talent shows anymore. At least not the ones at Pima Elementary.

Check out Kellan's performance!


The Diving Meet

Ok, so I haven't written in awhile. A LONG while. For the two or three of you who follow this blog, my sincerest apologies. I have a ton of stuff I want to post, but I am simply going to start with the most recent, and work my way through everything I want to share.

So, this past Tuesday, Abby and Grace had a Diving Meet. This summer, they, along with their good friend Blayke, are doing the Swim Team and the Diving Team. There is an awful lot of work associated with these teams, and the few practices I have attended, I feel like I need to nap from just watching them. The swimming is endless laps back and forth across the pool, the diving is endless jumps and flips that look way scary from where I sit. But the girls are always excited and exhilerated after the practices, as well as incredibly hungry.

The first week was tough, and there were tears and vows to quit. Until they realized that they get ribbons at the meets. And who doesn't love ribbons? And after that first week, all the benefits of being involved in team sports started to show. They were making new friends, and gaining physical strength. And they try so hard. I know that I wouldn't have the stamina to keep going, so I am blown away that these three little girls are sticking it out and having a great time to boot.

Here they all are diving and jumping at the meet....

Abby, Front Jump Tuck

Grace, Front Fall In Free

Blayke, Front Fall in Free