I sat outside Petite Ballet today chatting with the other Mums and feeling very reminiscent of my own dancing days. It felt strange to now be ‘the Mum on the bench’. The last time I was in a dance studio was when I was a young lass and it was me on the dance floor with my Mum patiently waiting on the bench! The door to the studio was open so I could see most of Charli’s ballet class and it was so beautiful. She is such a perfectionist, and was carefully observing her teacher, always keen to give everything her best effort.
Before her class we enjoyed the the ritual of getting dressed in the changing rooms. Everything had to be perfect. She has never liked having her hair brushed or played with; but when it comes to ballet she is so calm and still, so that I can do the perfect bun (not easy on shoulder length bobbed hair!). I found some gentle hair-grips and she was very happy that they went in easily and didn’t hurt, saying, ‘Thank you Mummy for getting me those hair clips.’
We spent several minutes getting the elastic on the front of her ballet shoes perfect. If I drew the elastic in tight enough to make a perfect bow (which was what she wanted) she would have spent the lesson hobbling and emerged with blisters. We calmly came to a solution and tucked the ends into her shoes instead. Whilst we waited outside her class I noticed her comparing her ballet shoes with the others girls. She was so excited, skipping up and down the corridor and practicing her positions.
I can’t wait for the ‘performance class’ at the end of term. I clearly remember my ballet classes and practicing the moves over and over again. I always loved the music (we had a dear elderly lady who played the piano beautifully) and performing. I often had ‘butterflies’ in my tummy; but more with excitement than nerves and smiled to myself when Charli tried to go to the toilet twice before her class, but said, ‘I’m not nervous Mummy’. It’s such a joy to be sharing this with her.
After her class we walked to Cuba Street and Charli’s eyes sparkled as we walked past a Sushi bar. I was happily surprised and we enjoyed an almost romantic lunch! We were the only patrons and what with the gentle background music and friendly staff we were almost like lovers! I couldn’t help but look deeply into her happy eyes and feel the joy bouncing off her.
She loved the sushi, but we both wanted something sweet to finish off with. Mr. Bun was perfect and we enjoyed a delightful sugar rush there!
We could have spent all day in town together. We were having such fun and it really felt great to have one-on-one time together – as we never get the chance during the week – apart from story time before bed. Dan took Sophie horse riding and had an equally lovely one-on-one with her. They arrived early and watched the horses being herded down the hill from their paddocks. Dan said it was great to see the horses being greeted by all the stable hands and each horse knew which stable to go into without any direction. Sophie really wanted to ride on Panda, but unfortunately Panda wasn’t so well. She was given a beautiful, large horse called Duchess. Sophie wasn’t having a bar of the name Duchess and was insistent on the name Panda – so Dan had to code name the horse Panda! The horse was a little faster and more strong-willed than Panda and Dan said he fell in love with Duchess (just as well he likes his women strong-willed as he’s definitely got a house-full of them!).
In the afternoon it was time to rug up for the girls and I. The northerly winds were howling outside and Dan was playing soccer. We had a lovely afternoon and the girls were both asleep by 6.30pm! It’s going to be an early start tomorrow…!
ROAR! Go All Blacks tonight!