Sunday, June 21, 2009

like mother, like daughter

So I know today is Father's Day and I should be blogging about Olivia's amazing Daddy. I do have plans to share some very cute father/daughter pictures very soon, but there is one other thing I must share first. Last Sunday marked a very special occasion for Olivia. It was her first dance recital. You already know how much I have been looking forward to this considering my background with dance and my history at Northeast School of Dance. Well this was extra special, because not only was Olivia taking the stage for the first time, but I was putting on my tap shoes and taking the stage for the first time in almost 13 years!

This year marked the 40th anniversary of my old dance studio. I practically grew up at this place and I spent every second of my free time dancing until I graduated from high school. Well to celebrate the 40th anniversary and honor the amazing owner of the studio, Beth Schiebel, all of the alumni were invited back to participate in a surprise dance at the conclusion of the recital. We had been meeting once a month for the past 6 months to practice and it all came together perfectly with over 100 alumni taking the stage to pay tribute to this amazing woman who has kept this dance studio going for 40 years! Needless to say, it was a very special night.

The day started early with Olivia going to her dress rehearsal, hence the yawning. There was a lot of anxiety on my part on how she would handle dancing on a big stage in front of hundreds of people. Once I was able to convince her to put her costume on (still a struggle), she went out with all of her friends and did a great job! There seemed to be no nervousness on her part, being up there in front of others. Even though this was just a rehearsal I could already feel my heart just swelling with pride! After seeing her practice I had no doubt that she would do great that evening.

After getting Olivia home, fed and put to bed I had to head back to the concert hall to attend a hush-hush final practice for the alumni dance. This was going to be the first time we would all come together to finalize things on the stage. There were a ton of us and it was pretty hectic but we pulled it together. The special thing about the dance we were performing was that it was the dance the owner did for her senior solo in high school. The dance held a special place in her heart so it made sense that it would be the dance we would all perform for her. Once my practice was over I had to rush home and get Olivia up and ready. After we were all set I headed back to the concert hall for the third time that day for the actual recital.

Olivia was all dolled up in her adorable pink costume. Surprisingly enough, after being asked to wear it so many times over the past few weeks she did not give me one bit of trouble when it was time to get dressed...thank goodness! It is too bad that the costume is not more comfortable, because she is darn, stinkin' cute in it!

The little kids always perform at the beginning of the show so they can leave if they want. She was #2 so I did not have to wait long to see her. I know it sounds funny, but I was nervous for her. I did not want her to freeze up and forget all of the steps she had worked so hard on all year. As I sat there with butterflies in my tummy I watched as she performed every step to perfection (or as perfect as a two-year old can). Her whole class did great! She tapped her little heart out and I could not have been more proud!

Once she was done I went to meet her so that she could come watch some of the dancing with me. She watched a few numbers then left with her daddy for a bit to get a celebratory ice cream cone and squeeze in some play time on the playground. I knew there was no way she was going to sit through a 2+ hour recital so they left and came back in time to watch me dance. She sat on Todd's lap during my performance and I was told she clapped very loudly for me. I have only one picture from my dance. See the arrow? That's me!

Overall it was a great night! Olivia tapped like a pro and made us very proud! I got to put my tap shoes back on and remember what it was like to perform, as well as see some great, old friends. I think the best part of the night came when I was putting Olivia to bed. Earlier that day I told her that I was proud of her for dancing on the big stage. That night when I put her in bed she looked at me and said, "Mommy, I am very proud of you for dancing on the big stage!". Oh my just does not get any better than that!

I will be so honored if my daughter grows up to love tap as much as I did growing up. I am fully prepared for her to tell me that she has had enough in a few years, and that will be fine too. If anything I can always look back on this year and tell her that both mommy and Olivia tap danced on the big stage!


Wormie said...

Oh how precious!! She is so cute in her costume, and from the short video, it looks like she did so well!! She has the booty-shaking down pat!!!

And how fun for you to dance again on stage! What a great time that must have been!!

Anonymous said...

That's awesome!! That's so neat you could both dance! I cheered with my junior high girls I used to coach once and WOW I had forgotten how crazy it is to perform in front of a group. (Let's leave it to the kids! ha!)

Very cool!!!! She's just precious. : )

Betsy King Photography

Anonymous said...

I am so proud of both of you, how cute...mother and daughter dancers...I love her little costume and so happy to hear that she did an amazing job...I heard from two Grandma's how precious it was... :)
Love Aunt Sue Sue

Anonymous said...

I could not have been more proud when I saw Olivia dance for the first time. Plus I was thrilled to see you back tapping again. So nice that Great Grandma could attend. It was a special day.