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My Daughter Didn’t Dance

Today, my daughter didn’t dance, and it broke my heart.

 

Lily-Ann celebrated her sixth birthday almost a week ago.  On July 20th we had friends and a few family members over to the house to help her celebrate.  She’d decided on a Goddess Girls theme this year.  We all dressed in chitons, played games I created based on the characters in the books, ate ambrosia cake and drank nectar punch, and everyone wore the winged sandals we made as our party favours.  After her party, she told me that all her birthday dreams and wishes had come true.  It was an awesome day.

Click the photo to see the rest of her party pictures.

Click the photo to see the rest of her party pictures.

 

The two weeks leading up to her sixth birthday, the girl had been going through some rather big developmental changes.  It was clear she was becoming a “big kid” and leaving the “baby” behind.  I was so excited for her.  She was growing in leaps and bounds right before my eyes.  I was proud of the conscious choices she was making, and happy for those things that were changing even without her awareness.  As much as I loved my baby, my toddler, and my little girl, I love the big kid she was becoming even more (if that’s possible).

My little girl loved going to the movies.  She loves the stories, the action, the music, the popcorn…  cuddling up in the dark theater.  More than any of that though, she loved to dance.  Ever since that first movie we went to, we’d let her run up to the front as soon as the credits started, and we’d watch her dance.

Those first few times, she’d wipe out…  a lot.  We’d hold back though, and just wait.  Then, with even more resolve, determination, and grit she would dust herself off and dance her heart out.  Sometimes spinning all the way from one side of the theater to the other, arms held wide, face to the sky, feeling the entire world whorl around her.  And she would take my heart along for the ride.

It was secretly my favourite part of the movie too.

There were times, when others would get caught up in her passion too.  When individuals, couples, and families would stay to watch her dance.  Some would clap for her.  Others would tell us how amazing they thought she was.  And there were those who would simply smile, their eyes full of gratitude.

I think her dancing reminded people of joy.  We so easily forget how much of it there is in this world.  We get so caught up in things that really don’t matter and we forget how to be swept up in it.  Joy can fill the heart with rapture and our lives with light.  Lily-Ann gave that back to people, even if it was just for a while.

Today, when the movie ended, and she got up to dance, my heart soared – like it always did.  She got up to the front, and she stood there.  I watched her posture change, and watched that joy melt away.  Then I watched her walk back to her seat.  She sat back down and said “I’m not going to dance today.  Maybe a different day, but not today.”  And I started to bawl.  I wasn’t loud, but I couldn’t stop the tears.  They poured down my face.

Lily wasn’t sad.  She was happy.  But that pure innocent joy, without a care about what anyone could think, was gone.  She really is a big kid, and with that comes both good and bad.  I look forward to what this next stage has in store for us, but I desperately mourn for my baby – who was here with me only weeks ago.

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The Pre-K Graduation (photos and videos)

So, yesterday was kid-kid’s pre-k graduation.  The kids all did such a great job, and they were all so patient (it’s hard waiting to hear your name called through TWO classes worth of little ones).  Lots of people have been waiting ALMOST as patiently for photos and videos – so here they are.

Now, before we start the videos, please note:  The girlie had her hair done beautifully.  I left her in her classroom about twenty minutes before they came down to the gym…  how you see her, is how she came down.  LMAO  It took every ounce of willpower to ignore my OCD self and NOT rush over and fix her pretty little headband.  But I didn’t.  I left it as is, and she felt good about herself (me mussing with her would not have been good for her self esteem – and we love her as she is, mussed up tresses and all).

 

 

Here they are performing “clap, clap, clap your hands”.  Watch afterwards…  little Alyssa runs to the edge of the stage looking for her mom, hoping for a little assistance.  LOL  Too cute!  Oh!  And yes, my daughter is the only one in the entire class who insists on bowing and taking her due credit for her performance.  LMAO  No…  she couldn’t possibly be MY daughter.  heh heh.

 

 

Song number two – all about what they learned this year in pre-k.  😀

 

 

The girlie sings this song all the time, it’s one of her favourites.  We spend a lot of time answering questions about why they’d have a rat chasing away a snake when snakes eat rats…  which always cracks me up.  She takes it all so seriously.  😉  But honestly?  Why do they have a rat chasing a snake?

 

 

So…  what do you think?  Maybe another performer in the family?  LOL

Damon (who took all the videos for me – thanks so much!) missed the very beginning of this next bit.  Ms. Tracy introduced each of the kids, and said a few words about them before giving them a book and their certificate.  Of course, our little one – who goes to school dressed as a princess or a fairy (and slightly less often as a cowboy or pirate) half the time, was introduced as “Miss Lily-Ann Marie Smith Princess Cinderella”.  😉  And as for the comment that they watched her “become smart as a whip”?  We think she always was.  LMAO

 

 

Back when she was only three, and in her first year of pre-k, Lily-Ann had both a “boyfriend” and a “girlfriend” (the second of which is still her bff, even though she went off to kindergarten and kid-kid didn’t).  And that boyfriend title stuck, as Cale also stuck around for a second year of pre-k.  I made sure to grab a quick photo of the two of them on their way into the school for their pre-k graduation.  All dressed up, and SUPER cute:

Lily-Ann & Cale

Lily-Ann & Cale – a couple of cuties

Lastly is the girl with her best bud from this year.  Parker is seriously the sweetest little boy ever.  He helps Lily-Ann with her fear of heights, always waits for her to make sure she hasn’t gotten herself into trouble, and is by her side about 80% of the time.  He really is such a huge sweetheart.  I’m so glad she’s got a friend in him.  🙂  So, I had to make sure to grab a shot of them after their grad:

Lily-Ann & Parker - so totally adorable and sweet

Lily-Ann & Parker – a mom can’t help but hope he makes it out of the “friend zone” some day.

 

So thanks for sticking with me through this video and photo laden post.  It was a very special day for the girl and us.  Can’t believe she’ll be on her way to kindergarten this Autumn.  I blinked and my baby girl is already a school kid.  How exactly does that happen?

Our Queen Size Family Bed Seems Big

Tonight, out of the blue, kid kid announced that she was going to sleep in her “up high bed” (it’s what we call her loft bed that we built above our bed).  For the longest time it has been a place where she goes to play, or to craft, or to read when she wants some time to herself.  We built it when she turned three so that it would be there for her whenever she was ready.  Well…  at four and a half I guess she’s ready.  I have to admit, our queen size family bed seems awfully big and a little lonely just now, with only me in it.

The girlie is up in her bed.  The husband is upstairs on his computer.  And I’m laying, alone, in our family bed.  Yep.  A queen sized bed feels unnecessarily big and lonely just now.  If this becomes a habit, I may have to invite a dog or two back into my bed.  The last one to sleep with us was Nico, and he crossed the Rainbow Bridge back when Lily-Ann was still a wee babe.

I knew she was starting to grow up when we left the terrible three’s behind (seriously, who the hell coined the term “terrible twos”??? The two’s are EASY compared to the threes…  that’s when the REAL terrible stuff shows up) and we had a generous, kind-hearted, helpful kid (okay, a GENERALLY generous, kind-hearted, helpful kid) show up.  But I don’t know that I’m really ready for her to be quite this grown up.  I kinda miss my baby.

Hmmm…

Might have to start auditioning the dogs for the role of bed-sleeper.

 

 

Here are a few posts I’ve made previously about our sleeping arrangements and the loft bed:

Some days are just too full.

Today, while mostly awesome, was just too full.  And I honestly wish I could have taken today away from work of any kind.  But we are now down to crunch time with Camp fYrefly and I had to work on sending out acceptance packages.  There are still a lot more to go out – but I got a good start on them… and will keep working on them tomorrow.

Why did I want today off?  Well, the wee girlie only turns four once.  And today was the day.

When she woke up (extra early, after a restless night, of course) I checked her over thoroughly.  Inspected each and every inch, looking to see if there were possibly any three year old parts left.  She giggled like mad as I peered at her armpits, checked between each toe, pinched her cheeks, wiggled her nose, and peeked into her belly button.  But no.  It appears that every single part is now a four year old part.  There are no three year old parts left.

Before afternoon had a chance to commence, we hit the mall.  Now… this particular mall is one we usually avoid.  It’s just too crowded, too teen frenzy, and just too full of memories for me (not bad memories, just lots of them, around every corner).  But on special occasions, we venture through the underground parking and emerge into it’s well lit crazitude (as I’ve mentioned before, making up words has a long, grand, history behind it… all the brightest, most awesome writers do it).  Today was one of those special occasions.

While the wee girlie was turning four, her hot pink stuffed flamingo, most appropriately named Mingo, was turning one.  So it was off to Build-a-Bear we went.  Mingo needed a new birthday outfit, and the wee girlie had $21 worth of coupons to spend.

After our mall trip, it was off to my parent’s place.  Where I sat at the kitchen table, Macbook Pro, iPad, and external hard drive all connected with various wires, and all connected to me – via the keyboard and trackpad.  Thus the acceptance packages began to roll out.

Once Mom needed the table, I moved into the sewing room to begin working on the girlie’s costume pieces for her party on Saturday.  This year she requested a Jungle party.  A surprisingly easy thing to deliver.

Normally I spend a week (or even two) frantically preparing for the girlie’s birthdays.  I don’t do this because I have to, but because I love doing it.  I harvest berries, bake, cook, sew, craft…  Work like mad.  And then sit back and take in the joy of Strawberry Day (as her birthday has become known as).  This year, I knew that was not happening.  And I’ll admit, this particular Strawberry Day kinda feels like cheating.

We are going to The Fun Factory.  That’s right.  We’re heading somewhere, where I don’t have to do a darn thing but sit back and enjoy the air conditioning as the kids run around and play.  Then, for 45 minutes, we’ll head into their jungle themed room (one of four party rooms) for cake and presents before heading back out to the general play area.

I am not making a cake.  We’ve ordered a Monkey Jungle cake from Co-op.  I am not baking, cooking, or crafting.  I did minimal sewing today (about 1.5 hours worth) to create a Monkey costume for the girlie, as it’s a costume party.  And that’s it.  Come Saturday we’ll pick up the cake, and head on over to party with anyone who shows up.  LMAO  Yep.  Feels like cheating.  No cleaning, no mess.  Show up, party, leave.  LOL

In honor of this very different type of party, we are calling it Jungleberry Day.  Because, well…  it’s not really a Strawberry day if I’m not preparing a whack load of strawberries and strawberry dishes for my little Strawberry, now is it?  😉

So, after a bit of sewing, it was time for supper (and I so appreciate Mom providing the meal for us, I felt bad not pitching in at all, but I so desperately needed that time – so THANKS MOM!).  Mom made up salad and pizza.  Then, it was onto cake and presents.

The wee girlie was so wound up and exhausted by the time we were done, that she took a few laps around the yard with her new rockets/arrows (they are these air propelled nerf-like rocket/arrow things that you can shoot at each other) and it was time to come home and hit the hay.  BTW, thanks for those Mom and Dad.  When I first saw them I was thinking “Are you nuts?!?!?” but you can get out a lot of frustrations shooting (safely) at your kid.  LMAO

Now we are home and in bed.  The girlie, fast asleep.  She’s four.  Just like that.

My Darling Wee Girlie… growing up

Lily-Ann is growing up before my eyes.  These three years have passed by in a flash.  Today she sewed her first quilt (no backing on it, but that’s another lesson for another time).  She cut it, pieced it together, fed it into the sewing machine, and controlled the foot peddle.  That blows my mind a little bit.

As anyone who knows Lily well can attest to, she can be a handful.  Smart, strong willed, and determined to do things her own way…  (wonder where she gets THAT from).  😉  But she also has shining moments that leave me feeling so very proud.  She really is amazing, and I’m so very lucky.

We were leaving co-op the other day, and a gentleman held the door open for the wee girlie and I.  She looked up at him and said “Thank you sir”.  His jaw dropped, and I smiled as I thanked him too.  I then squeezed Lily-Ann’s hand and said “Thank you for your manners.  It makes me so happy when you are so nice.”

Growing Up

Lily-Ann's Quilt

And yes.  I know.  I owe a photograph from yesterday.  They are all still on my camera.  Need to clear some space on the computer.  LMAO  But promise to have it for you soon.

And yes.  I know.  I also owe you a Scraptastic Saturday post.  Its coming too.  I promise.

🙂

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