We stayed at a big Doubletree hotel in Jersey that had an indoor and an outdoor pool. The kids danced around the lobby entertaining the other guests for several hours Friday night after their first 4-hour rehearsal. In the room, J wrote in her journal and we read a book together before changing our room to one that had a working A/C. 8am was the photo reshoot from last year. The 3 kids (out of us 6) who were on this team last year were up at 6:30, on the road by 7:30, and started getting photographed by 8am. In this shoot, the kids wore all white:
Another 4-hour rehearsal began at 10am. At 2pm, we moms took the kids for lunch at a cute little family restaurant near the dance studio. At 4pm they started learning their 3rd number and 4 1/2 hrs later we were back at the hotel having a quick dinner and watching the kids swim in the indoor pool. Ok, so they danced 8 hours on Saturday after a 2-hour photoshoot, and went swimming after dinner until 10:15pm. The energy these kids have is incredible.
We left at 8am for the 40-minute drive for this year's photo shoot. There had to be about 95 kids all dressed in camouflage and army stuff. The NYC skyline was right behind us and it was a gorgeous day. I took my own shots when I could:
The host studio was having a big barbecue, but our group decided to spend the day in the outdoor pool at the hotel. We sunbathed and swam for about 5 hours. The kids had such a fun time playing together all weekend and the moms got to laugh, and drink, and play too! Sunday night we walked over to a restaurant for dinner. All 13 of us doing some more laughing and bonding over tons of food.
On Monday morning I took all 6 of our dancers to the dance studio and got to relax for about 4 hrs. We met up with the kids again around 12:30pm and we got to see all 5 of their new numbers they'll be performing this season. Each number is about 4 minutes long, but they're performed in immediate succession, so it's actually like one continuous 20-minute routine. I got all choked up for a few minutes, just bursting with pride at the whole scene. This is what J lives for. Being selected for a team like this is such an honor for her. She can't wait til the first big performance!
B, K, and W enjoyed the time at my moms. They had a big barbecue on Saturday with a lot of people over and dipping in the pool. They went for breakfast, went to the beach, went shopping, and went to the movies also over the weekend. K got a new phone, B and W saw Shrek 3, and all of them got a few shades darker from the sun. I drove out there Monday afternoon to pick them up and was so happy to finally be home Monday night.
Today J has her vocal lesson, K needs to try on new pants for one of her recital numbers, and W will do some workbook - I picked up a few new ones he'll love. I need to spend most of this week organizing for the recital. Plus we have a few homeschool get-togethers as well. Another busy week is in store. Then J starts summer tech classes and preparation for the July Nationals in Virginia Beach. The kids can't wait.