That is Levy, pictured above, when she took her first ballet class. I practically followed her around the studio taking photos non-stop because I just could not handle the cuteness. She danced and twirled and jumped and stretched her arms up to the ceiling and I just marveled at this beautiful little creature that was mine. And seriously, those first time ballet classes ARE THE CUTEST OMG.
Here she is dancing in her first Nutcracker with the Northeast Ballet Company, with that still round not yet a big kid little belly, missing a bunch of teeth. When she came out on stage that first time I cried my eyes out unabashedly because I had never been so impressed. Here was this teensy little girl, jumping out of the big skirt of Mother Ginger and giving it her all to a full house, at 5. I can barely get up the nerve to talk to a roomful of people about anything, let alone perform on a stage. In Kindergarten. And our experience was so positive, was so moving. The confidence this ballet family gives these kids, it is awe inspiring. It was like I was watching her grow up before my very eyes in the most lovely way possible.
And then last night I got her ready for her first dress rehearsal as a Party Girl in the opening scene, the "Party Scene" of the Nutcracker, which she was so thrilled to get. We did her hair and put on her brand new slippers, and as I sat there on the metal folding chair waiting for her to put her costume on I could barely get together the words to express to her how impressed I was with her. I felt like I could never adequately explain to her just how beautiful and poised she is, this little 7 year old. It was all I could do to stop fussing with her curls, to just sit back and let her do her beautiful thing
We've been going to the Nutcracker Tea at the Hall of Springs at SPAC since Levy was 2 years old, it is one of those mother and daughter traditions that I look forward to every year. Here she is that first year (excuse the grainy old phone pic)...
I love the little cups of hot chocolate and the tiny little cakes, she loves the cookies and the candy canes and the fact that everyone gets a tiny Nutcracker at the end as a gift. I love that we get to spend time together, in that gorgeous historic place, watching something beautiful.
The only thing is, this year, I won't get to sit with her, because she will be on stage. So if you see me on Sunday making a complete fool of myself crying at the Nutcracker Tea, don't judge. I'm just thinking of my little once chubby bellied ballerina and how proud I am to be her mom.