Saturday, December 28, 2013

December 2013

Ahhh, December.  As I say every year, there is nothing better than Christmas in NYC.  W and I did our usual round of Rockefeller Plaza Christmas tree and FAO Schwarz.  We saw a few store windows, too, but he wasn't so into that this year.  All 5 of us and my mom met up in Manhattan one night, had a nice dinner at a small cafe/diner, and walked over (through the Lincoln Center grounds, which were beautifully decked out for Christmastime) to LaGuardia High School's production of Grease.  As usual, the school show was out of this world.  So many of J's friends were in it and even B and I knew a lot of the kids.  The entire 8-show run in the 1150-seat concert hall was completely sold out.  J didn't audition for this show.  I kinda wish she did, not only for the cool experience it would have been, but also because a particular famous parent whose child was in the show, took a bunch of the cast out for a big celebration.  Sigh.  J really couldn't care less about things like that - but I would have loved to hear all about it, lol.

B and I once again got to see J in all 3 hours of her afternoon dance classes at school for "Parent Observation Day".  That day she had 90 minutes of classical ballet and 90 minutes of Horton modern.  The kids did their usual combinations and at the end they practiced for the big Senior Dance Showcase which they'll be performing in at the end of January.  All the dancers are truly amazing.

J stretching at school

This month, J also:

  • has been in rehearsals for the big Rising Stars school talent show which is the first or second weekend in February
  • was personally asked to be a dancer on a (somewhat famous) hip hop choreographer's video demo reel
  • took a theater jazz class with Lane Napper.  She was his guest that day (they have mutual friends) and he even singled J out to demonstrate a certain combination for the class
  • has been busy working on all new choreography for the upcoming dance competition season.  She is doing 2 solos and 3 group numbers this year.  

W is doing great with academics.  I think we have finally found the perfect weekly schedule (until it's not perfect anymore, lol).  But really, he even mentioned to me how good it was.  I know we are constantly changing our order and frequency of things, but the content pretty much remains the same.  PreAlgebra and Tom Sawyer are moving along very nicely.  Science (chemical & physical changes) and History (Ancient Egypt) are also sinking in well.  We have stayed on track and he's taking it all pretty seriously.  It could be because he's almost 13 and more mature now, but also because he has expressed interest in trying public high school.  He said he wants to see what all the hype is about.  We have already looked at a few options for him and are most happy with a small, local school that has excellent ratings and reviews.  After we did the research, a friend of his came back to CCD class (after 2 years) and it turns out that she goes to that school (it's a secondary school that include middle grades).  B and her mom spoke at length and she has nothing but good things to say about it (her 10th grader goes there, too).  So, I'll take that as a sign that we're choosing correctly.  Whether or not he changes his mind is fine with me.  But for now, he is happily getting his work done.

W has recently decided that he's just that not into scouting anymore.  He really wanted to be and gave it a good shot, but he won't be going back.  He'd rather keep his main focus on his MMA training.  This month he tested for his first stripe.  In this gym, after 4 stripes he can test for a blue "belt" (which is actually black and blue shorts - he wears black and white ones now).  In Muay Thai, there technically isn't a color ranking system like they have in other martial arts.  The stripes and colors are most likely so the gym can keep track of who's where.  But still, it was so exciting to watch.  Everything he did looked so difficult and with him being the youngest in the group, I was so nervous for him.  At the end he did get his stripe - and the recognition of having the best technique out of everyone.  What a proud moment for W!

W (w/mouth guard in) after getting his MMA stripe