The kids spent the weekend dancing in their studio’s Christmas shows. There were four – two on Saturday and two on Sunday.
Julia, Phoebe, and Jack performed on Saturday.
On Sunday, Julia and Phoebe performed again, along with Lucy.
I did the girls’ hair and make up. Even after all these years in dance, I’m not great at those things, so it was A Big Deal for me to do them. Phoebe’s hair isn’t even long enough to get it all up in a bun, so what you see happening on her head is an actual miracle, or at least the illusion of a miracle as it all started to fall apart after the first show each day.
Hair glue is a miracle for no more than two hours.
Thankfully, we had a break between shows and she was patient with me while I worked at it. I think they looked fine and that’s as good as it gets when it comes to me and hair and make up.
Now, here are just a whole bunch of performance photos because who even reads words when there are pictures?
According to what I wrote last year, we’d been doing the Thankful Tree for seven years, so this year makes eight!
We kicked it up a notch by adding lights. (We’re so freaking fancy.)
This is the first year Jack could write the things he was thankful for by himself.
What’s that dripping? Oh! Oh, that’s my heart melting.
As hard as it can be to avoid the ugly in the world these days, the truth is, earth is a pretty great place. There are people loving each other everywhere. That’s what it’s all about, folks. Let’s keep doing that.
One month and one day ago, Phoebe and her fellow first graders took a field trip to a farm. They each came back with a pumpkin. Phoebe demanded to carve hers as soon as we returned home from school. Any why not?
She did most of it herself, including the clean up. She even prepped the seeds for roasting. And then we took pictures because she was so proud of her Jackie-O-Lantern. (It is a girl.)
It didn’t last until Halloween since she carved it a little early, but she enjoyed it thoroughly.
One week ago today, Julia and her marching band took the field at the OMEA State Marching Band Finals and earned an overall Superior rating, as well as Superior ratings in every category.
It marked the end of a glorious marching band season. And then pep band began on Monday.
I have been writing here for eleven years. There are times when it has been my journal – intensely personal and for the purpose of working through thoughts or gaining perspective, which is mostly about being honest and vulnerable. Sometimes I was here trying to be “a real writer” and focusing on craft and caring whether it was right and good. Other times, I was just really looking to connect with other people and that was mostly about sharing what was relatable. But always, it has been my treasure house of family memories. And it has mostly been that the past few years. The most important thing about that is timeliness. Capturing the moment before it passes. And here I am, late again.
But look, we carved pumpkins!
Mine was an owl.
We went Trick or Treating.
Julia and Lucy dressed as Hogwart’s students – a Ravenclaw and a Gryffindor, respectively. Phoebe was a skeleton. Jack was a dog, so “I can eat Phoebe’s bones,” he said. Haylee was a nerd. And did I mention that Haylee has moved back home? She has! And she’s in band, too. Our last football game of the season was against her school, so we got to see their field show, which was great!
The following Wednesday was Jack’s Fall party at preschool.
I got to be a helper and provide the craft. I bought craft kits from Oriental Trading Company which were adorable and fun, but I felt guilty because it was so easy. Why is this? If another parent had provided that craft, I would have genuinely found it delightful, but I kept kicking myself for not aspiring to a better craft. We had some extra time at the party. (Maybe because my substandard craft didn’t take enough time?) I ended up pulling out Dave’s old Halloween Mad Lib from Julia’s preschool Halloween party, which I loved. So did the kids. They were literally rolling on the floor laughing when they heard their names and word choices. It was so fun to revisit it. But it also made me realize I’ve lost some of my energy and optimism since the first go round. Where did it go and how do I get it back?