The Joy & Energy of Dance Recital Season!

It’s dance recital season, and while it was nonstop, torrential rain as we ran in the building from the car, the performances were absolute sunshine!

My nine year old was in three different dance numbers including the finale with the “big” kids and did a fabulous job holding her own as her dad, Nana and I cheered Quinn on.

I couldn’t be prouder of her, the other dancers and Miss Dez who did a wonderful job choreographing the hip hop numbers.

I felt like a true dance mom!

All the best,

Tanya

It’s My Tenth Mommyversary, But I Still Have Big Shoes to Fill!

I can’t believe I’m celebrating my tenth “mommyversary!” I’ve learned and grown so much, but I still have big shoes to fill. Interestingly, one of the gifts my husband and daughter gave me was quite symbolic and reminded me of this fact. About a month ago, my husband sent me a text about a pair of sneakers he planned on purchasing for our daughter for her ninth birthday, and I replied back saying that I wouldn’t mind a pair of those as well and have always loved the classic Adidas sneakers. Little did I know, he was purchasing a pair for the both of us to wear together on Mother’s Day because Quinn wanted us to be twins. She was so excited, and I was too.

Then, the card she gave me just added to the symbolic gesture. It said, “Mom, I’ve got some really big shoes to fill.” She then told me that she picked the card because she loves wearing my shoes and how she hopes to be like me when she grows up. This made my day but made me think about how I’m still learning and growing as a mother. Quinn is in her last year of single digits. Her interests are constantly evolving, and she will be a tween before I know it. I noticed on the side of the sneaker it says, “Superstar” in gold, which is how she often views me. I hope that I can continue to fill those shoes and be the mom that she needs in the years to come.

Happy Mother’s Day to all of the moms, mothers to be, aunties, mother-like-figures, etc.

All the best,

Tanya

Never Too Young to Learn the Art of (Penny)War Through Supporting, Sacrificing and Strategizing

The talk of war, especially with the current and tragic events of What’s going on with Russia and Ukraine, is all around us, and at my daughter’s school is no exception. Luckily, their “war” is all in fun and for a good cause to raise money for the classes and school through the PTO event of “Penny Wars.” When Quinn was in kindergarten, I helped as a volunteer of the PTO and collected buckets and helped kindergarten classes decorate theirs. Unfortunately, this annual tradition did not happen when Quinn was in first or second grade due to the COVID restrictions, so she and I both were excited to see it being advertised on Class Dojo.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that my eight year old went to her own bank container of coins to gather pennies to support her class rather than asking her father or me if we had pennies. Once the status came out in the middle of the week, and she found out her class was in the lead out of all of the third grade classrooms, she was ready to do whatever it took to maintain that lead.

The wheels were turning, and she began strategizing, so this time around, she was collecting quarters, dimes, nickels and even dollars to increase the gap between her class and the others. She told me her classmates planned on doing the same. As I saw all of the dollars in her ziplock bag, I informed her that she didn’t have to contribute all of her own money and that I could see if I had some coins too, but she still insisted on using her own money even with the contribution from her father and me. She informed me that she really wanted to give it in not just to help her class win the pizza party but because the money will go to the school and help when she graduates from fourth grade.

Even if Quinn’s class doesn’t win the pizza party for her grade level, I celebrate her willingness to support her class, to make sacrifices by contributing her own personal savings and even taking the time strategize to help her class win.

All the best,

Tanya

Am I Officially a Dance Mom? Celebrating My Daughter’s First Dance Competition

There were nearly 100 dance numbers an people everywhere. I was probably a little overwhelmed than my eight year old was as we attended her first dance competition yesterday. We arrived two hours early to get prepared and I summoned what little make-up skills I had to get Quinn “stage ready.” Thank goodness the dance owner of Zero Gravity Dance Company was there to assist me with applying eyelashes.

On the drive to the hotel, Quinn informed me that she was a bit nervous, but once she put in her costume, had her makeup on and practiced her hip hop number, I could see the excitement in her eyes and voice.

Though the event lasted until late in the evening, and I was growing tired, I’m so glad that I was able to support Quinn in her goals and interests. I love helping her do what she loves and felt so proud of her as she danced on the stage with the children in their hip hop number

I don’t think I’ll ever embody all of the traits of a “dance mom,” but I will always make sacrifices for my daughter and cheer her on like a maniac from the audience.

All the best,

Tanya

A Magical Time at the Philadelphia Zoo’s Luminature

Yesterday, we were all bundled up and ready to brave the cold weather and darkness knowing that we would soon witness spectacular sights of twinkling lights and displays at the Philadelphia Zoo.’s Luminature event. We attended in 2019 and didn’t get to go in 2020 due to Covid restrictions, so it made it that much more special this year.

My daughter observed how we had to go at night when it was dark. Otherwise, we wouldn’t be able to fully see the lights. This made me think about the significance of darkness, especially with what many of us have endured with being away from our loved ones and spending most of our time indoors. Sometimes to have a greater appreciation for the light, we must welcome darkness.

It was even more amazing than we recalled, and there were new displays that left us captivated. I’m so glad we didn’t allow the cold and darkness to stop us from enjoying this special outing with our aunt and cousins.

All the best,

Tanya

A Smile and Happy Feeling All from a Vaccine Shot

At Quinn’s last wellness appointment this past May, she was delighted when the doctor told her, “No shots this time around.” But this past Friday, she was excited and counting down the days. The week prior she even reported that one of her classmates already got his and that she couldn’t wait to get hers. The day before getting her shot, she asked her dad and me how ours felt. We both said it was like a pinch. So she was ready to take it like a champ.

When the day finally arrived, I picked her up from school, and we drive to the vaccination site about twenty minutes away. It was cold outside, so I had the heat on full-blast not realizing that I was “roasting” Quinn. When we were a few minutes away, she started taking off her jacket and telling me she was hot. Upon arriving and having the nurse take her temperature from the car, Quinn had a 100.7 degree temperature, and I was beside myself wondering if she wouldn’t be permitted to get vaccinated.

Both Quinn and I a looked at each other with nervousness, and me with disappointment. Could we make it this far with Quinn being well and then turned away? Luckily, the nurse could feel the extra warmth coming from the car and suggested that Quinn walk around outside for a few minutes before retaking her temperature. For the second reading it was right at 97.6 degrees, and I was bubbling over with joy inside.

Quinn had a little grimace as she got her shot but reported that it was just a little pinch like we said. Then she told me, “I don’t know why, but I feel so happy getting my Covid vaccine shot!” When I asked her what the shot means to her, she said getting back to normal, no masks and getting to have more fun with my family and friends. Then she said, “I guess that’s why I’m happy.” She couldn’t wait to show off her sticker and Tweety Bird bandage to her dad when we got home. No side effects except a little arm soreness, and she’s already talking about the second dose.

Why does seeing my daughter get vaccinated make me even happier and excited than when I did? She’s the future, and I look forward to her having a normal childhood where she can enjoy her family and friends with limited restrictions.

All the best,

Tanya

My Daughter’s Eight and a Half! Cherishing Past Moments As Time Flies By

Not too long ago, my eight year old reminded me that she’s officially eight and a half. On top of that pictures from past years came up on my phone, social media and Amazon Echo devices reminding me of the many special moments over the years. I’m truly amazed at how much my little girl has grown, not just physically but mentally, socially and emotionally as well. I’m so clad that I decided to chronicle special our special moments together because it allows me to slow down a little and just appreciate her life and my role as her mother.

Though there are still many more years to go, I’m still often brought back to those times when she was a baby just learning how to talk, crawl and walk. Now, she’s dancing, skating boarding, reading, multiplying and even writing plays. As life continues too become hectic again, I’m going to try my best to cherish our moments together as time flies by.

All the best,

Tanya

Don’t Want to Picture Losing My Baby Girl But Happy She’s Growing Into a Beautiful Young Lady

Picture day is fast approaching and will be here is just a few days. Just like when I was a kid, decades later, and it’s now a big deal for my daughter. Picking out that perfect outfit and how she’ll wear her hair is a big deal. Upon going to the hairstylist and getting a silk press for her 8th birthday, Quinn knew that she didn’t want ponytails, which is what I had for my third grade picture, but to wear her hair out.

I decided to honor her request since she doesn’t wear her hair out often; unfortunately, the stylist who did a wonderful job on her hair is unavailable. Instead of being disappointed, Quinn insisted that “I” do her hair.

When I told her that I’m not a stylist but will try my best, she reassured me that I would do a terrific job. Instead of waiting until picture day or the day before, I decided to give it a try last week after watching a few videos on YouTube. To my surprise, it turned out better than I hoped, and Quinn said, “You did a fabulous job, Mommy!”

Though it made me so happy seeing that big smile on Quinn’s face, I saw something else. My baby girl is growing up so fast! In two short years, she’ll be in double digits! But until then, I’m excited to see how her pictures turn out, and know that she’ll have a big smile on her face as my sweet little girl.

All the best,

Tanya