Beautiful Life

Hey child up and go; A big world is out there waiting for us to live in every day. Outside you will find, there is love all around you; Takes you, makes you wanna' say; That it's a beautiful life and it's a beautiful world and it's a beautiful time to be here, to be here, to be here. -Fisher

Thursday, June 4, 2009

My Tiny Dancer

First year of tap and ballet~2004

After the recital, with Mrs. Paige and her roses.

This was the cutest picture so I had to share it. It is from her second year to the song Fireflies by Faith Hill.

I know this will come as a surprise to so many of you, but our Isabel loves attention and loves to have a captive audience! I know, *gasp* shocking! She obviously gets that from her.... ahem.....daddy! Because if you really know me, you know I break out in hives at the thought of having all eyes on me. No, really......I had to choose a wedding dress with a high neckline. I have had my moments..... I did take dance, but I hated the recitals. And, I was in a pageant.... once. But overall, I shy away from that kind of attention....and public speaking. So, don't plan on booking me for entertainment at your next function. That's all I'm saying. Isabel, on the other hand, is another animal. She'd be happy to belt out the words she thinks go to True Dog by Toby Mac or anything at all by Miley Cyrus. And bonus for you, she works for any dollar amount....or candy. And sometimes, she will even be on key. That karaoke machine she got two Christmases ago is paying off, people! the early age of 3, Isabel began dance lessons. Not competitive. Just fun dance. We found this little studio around the corner that is owned by a wonderful Christian woman with a degree in Early Childhood Education and a passion for dance. She really loves the kids and our sweet little girl took to her right away. She danced for three years and then took a year off. Thought she might try tennis...that lasted two months. There is no stage, no spotlight, no make-up or cute costume and NO drama in tennis lessons! So, that had to go. She went back to dance this year. Back to her friends, who treated her like she'd never left.





So cute to see how she's changed. Admittedly though, this last one makes her look older than her 7 years, and that doesn't make me happy.

Unfortunately, they had a year of experience that she didn't, since she'd missed the year. All along, Ms. Susan would tell me she was holding her own. But, I wondered. We won't tell Isabel, but she isn't the most coordinated child in the universe....and ummmm....well, lets just say that having rhythm doesn't come completely natural for her. She might get that part from me. So, I was excited...and anxious to see her rehearsal.

Well, her jazz dance was to Celebrate....yes the one that goes "celebrate good times, c'mon". That one. She did well at rehearsal and even better at recital!

I'll show it to you in video but understand that I had a little sweetie from the studio working my video camera for me and it isn't a great video. But, you get the gist of it. It's a bunch of little girls jumping around the stage showing off their best "jazz" moves! YAY! And y'all, I did, in fact, pay for this. *sigh* She had fun....that's what I tell myself. She looked adorable....and much better during the actual recital, but this video is from rehearsal.

Isabel is the cute one! Oh, you need more direction than that? Okay....they are in pyramid, Jenny is in the front and Isabel is the dancer that is second from the left of the second row. When they move into places, she is back row, left end.

I took dance too. In my mind, I was a pretty good dancer. So, I have expectations. I loved tap and practiced it long after I was no longer taking lessons. I even tapped my way to 2nd runner-up in the one and only pageant, or solo act on a stage for that matter, that I ever did. So, I waited for her tap dance.

This is a little cut of that video.....Isabel is back on the left end, back row. And yes, good grief, she is dancing to Dolly Pardon! She is the one that doesn't know the steps seems a little bit lost......don't you think? And, lacks her normal confidence because of it. Let's be honest though, she isn't the only one that got......ummmmm, distracted. She's just the one that seems to be completely lost. Maybe it's just me. Maybe I set the bar too high? I mean, what you can't see is that she had the cutest facial expressions when she tapped her watch.....workin' 9 to 5....she sang the words.....what a way to make a livin'.

Well, I couldn't just let it go like that. My baby has tapped for four years! I wanted her to look like she's tapped for four years. I wanted her to feel good about it too!


The next morning she got up and went to swim team practice. While she was there, I made a DVD of the tap dance. They had practiced it three times the day before, and once I realized Isabel didn't know it, I taped the girl that did! When she got home from swimming I had her meet me in the cleared out kitchen. With tap shoes. Over the next five hours, (with breaks, of course....'cause I'm not that mean) we both learned that dance. We memorized all the steps together. Shuffle hop step, shuffle hop step, chasse ball change, Shuffle hop step, shuffle hop step, chasse ball change..... She enjoyed it at first. I think she got a little upset with me later on. But, she was determined. By 4 o'clock, she knew that dance! I knew she did!


So I snuck my video camera into the auditorium....that's what! You are not actually allowed to video tape during the recital. You can tape all you want at the rehearsal....but you gotta pay for a professional tape of the recital. I broke the rules, shhhh. Now, I must say that my bootleg copy of this dance is not great. Claire was in my lap.....No! I would not use my 3 year old to shield on-lookers from seeing my camera! She was just in my lap.....that's all. But, she bumped the camera a few times. Also, I had to cover the screen so the light would not be seen, and so I didn't exactly know where the camera was pointing, and at some point I cut off her head! But, the important thing is that you can see her little feet just a tapping away!!!

Again, she's the starlet on the right, in the back. Much better! It's not perfect, but she had confidence this time. You can't see her face, but we could! She may not have a dancing career in her future....and that's okay with us. But, she did have a good time. And, the best part? Parker leaned over to Paul right after the dance, and exclaimed that she'd done very well! Okay, maybe this part is even better. I thought she'd had it with me after all the pushing I'd done that day, I got ready for bed that night I found this.....

on my desk. Get me a box of tissues! Three of her roses from the night, with a note that says, I ♥ Mom and signed, Is. So, maybe I did alright by her.

Here she is with Ms. Susan!

And with her BFF, Maggie! So pretty. This was Maggie's first year, and she did so well! We were so proud of the girls!

Will she dance next year? Well, she decided she wanted to take drama along about Christmas time this year. Then, after the recital, she talked with Ms Susan....and now she thinks she'll dance again. Oh, boy. I can't tell you how sore my legs are after practicing that dance so much. I think I may be too old to keep up with her much longer!


Sally said...

What a beautiful little girl. And you have these photos from year to year to cherish for posterity. Such wonderful documentation for your family for the next generation. Your blog is fabulous!

The Sharp Family said...

You had me at the rose part... got me a little choked up. As a mom I am always wondering if I am doing right by my kids. And things like that let you know that you are... That was awesome. She was fantastic too btw. I would rather play frogger in cement that be on stage. The thought of it and my palms are sweating up! Way to go Isabel!!!!!!!!

Brianna said...

Boy, this is long! People are waiting for me to get off my computer so I can't read it all right now, but "I'll be Back". :)
The half I did read was cute. And I can vouch for the no rhythm on the Shaw side of her. Have you seen you three dance? jk... for the most part.
Much love,
I'll be there soon!

Brianna said...

Oh, And Isabel is now, and has always been, BEAUTIFUL! That's my girl. :)

Mama S said...

Boy did that bring back memories of you and Jennifer when you took dance. I must say you started out just like her before you had taken dance for so long. She'll get better too and as you say, she had fun and that the most important part. I loved the videos and especally the roses. Do my kids know how to say thank you or what! That part she gets from her mama. I know you're doing a good job! Tell Isabel she did just fine and you really see that all the practicing the day before did the trick.

Love you - Mom

The Source said...

She's such a sweetheart! I think she did an incredible job...all that practice paid off! Just getting up in front of a crowd with a smile on her face is awesome at her age!

You know, she needs to be a competition cheerleader! She definitely has the enthusiasm and energy! And it is ALL about the drama!

Hezra said...

good job! Yes to both of you. ;-) I got teary at the roses and note too. Very sweet. The practise DID help She seemed way more confident. And if I am not mistaken, one girl on the left glanced at HER a few times to see the moves. HEH HEH-- way to go Isabel

Michelle said...

YEAH IS!!!!!!!!! you did awesome!! i always liked jazz better than tap. tell your momma you are NOT a drama queen! chelsea, your legs shouldnt be hurting if you take that "stroll" to the playground a few more times. i know people think i am crazy sitting at my computer smiling away but i was watching her dance!! the roses almost made me cry!