Tuesday, November 25, 2014
The long awaited (by me) year of the mouse in the Nutcracker finally arrived! Helen Grace started out in the Nutcracker as a tumbleweed in the wild west version at 3, was a snowflake in the Alice in Wonderland version at 4, and was at last a mouse in the fairy tale version at 5.
Only at the rehearsals on stage this past week did I realize that Helen Grace had been chosen to be one of two mice to run out on stage and grab the cheese out of the mouse trap. During both times at practice, HG had her fingers plugging her ears as she played her part, anticipating the loud noise of the trap snapping closed (although there was no motion of the trap- just noise). We talked all week about how she knew it was coming, could take her fingers out, and prepare for the noise. I was a nervous wreck, but as always, SHE DID AWESOME!!!! No fingers in her ears for either performance (one Saturday, one Sunday). She did so well and had all the right (e)motions. At one point, she got a bit out of order in the line as they came out on stage. She hesitated for a split second as she considered running to her spot, but she quickly (and smartly) decided to just jump in line and get back in step. Such a big girl.
She was so proud of herself, LOVED all the roses she received from her sweet grandparents, and is already talking about what role she’ll get to play next year.
Saturday afternoon performance- “Mommy, take a picture of me as a ballerina!”Loving her lipstickGreeting Bubba, Granddaddy, and SpifferEven after a “mouse nap” before the show, she still needed an post-performance nap to be able to make it through a family dinner. I can’t remember the last time that she slept in my lap, so I soaked IT ALL UP.She asked for a photo shoot of/with her roses.Getting ready for Sunday’s performanceThe audience was full that night- the Mattice girls, Daddy, Grandma, and Peggy.Grabbing the cheese!Shaking their tails at the soldiers
Video from the second night of rehearsals (and I was so panicked about the trap part that I messed up the video and didn’t get it recorded- boooo)
Helen Grace had her first horse show on November 15th. She was a little nervous in the weeks leading up to it about people watching her, but Ms. Jody did a great job of explaining it to her and really playing it up as a fun event.
The weather was COLD that morning, but she bundled up and was confident and happy as we headed to the barn. We thought she was going to be first up, but she ended up being last in the group of five. Bless her heart for having to wait, but she was cool as a cucumber and didn’t show any nerves. We realized a perk of going last was getting to sit on the horse for the awards ceremony!
The show was divided into two classes- equitation (how she performed and carried herself on the horse) and under saddle (how she made the horse perform). In her age group, she scored third in equitation and second in under saddle and also received a reserve overall ribbon. (Some girls shared a ‘place’ so that they all received 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in each class.) She was so precious shyly raising her hand when they called her number, and we were SO PROUD of her!
While she has received two trophies for soccer seasons in the past, this was her first experience with place ribbons. We’ve tried to make a big deal about how different these ribbons are than trophies because she EARNED every point of these prizes. After getting a better understanding of how the process works, she said, “Well, I want to get a champion ribbon next time!” That’s my girl!
Our Hasseltine cousins surprised us by showing up at the barn that morning, and HG was proud as a peacock to show Hayes and Hastings around her stomping ground.
Only proof that Mama was there- she was dancing around me as she didn’t want to take a pic.Peeping in the ring to see what was going onFinally on Beanie Baby and ready to goRaising her hand in the awards ceremonyAaaaand she’s DONE!
Monday, November 24, 2014
After our lake weekend didn’t offer the opportunity for s’mores as I had promised to HG (mainly because I’m a scaredy cat with fire), I invited us over to the Browns to use their fire pit the next weekend. Emily was gracious enough to invite over the whole extended family for dinner and dessert, and man, we had a big ole time. HG loved helping to get the fire started, and she stayed out there with the boys a lot to work on some marshmallows, despite the cold temps. The weather was FRIGID, but we (the rest of us) would run out there, toast a marshmallow, and come running back in to eat. We had a great, fall night around the fire!