Forum: Arts / Diaries

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re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 2)
By hummingbird Comments: 10419, member since Mon Apr 18, 2005
On Mon Feb 24, 2014 10:20 PM
Edited by hummingbird (128773) on 2014-02-24 22:21:42 Team work, that's all it took!
And another post, move along please.

OMG!!! We did it!!!!!
re: Homegrown Democrat
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Fri Mar 14, 2014 11:53 AM
Edited by hummingbird (128773) on 2014-12-02 11:02:34 Removed a dead link that might be causing the spacing problem
Pie day

3.14

I just learned that pumpkin products and most pies are banned from cottage industry kitchens in my state.

Perhaps Panic is onto something....


Before I write anymore, time to test the picture size. After all the hard work and encouragement by Hummingbird to advance this page, I'd hate to wreck it again...

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 1)
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Fri Mar 14, 2014 12:07 PM
Edited by Christine (207347) on 2014-03-14 12:10:47
Alrighty then.....

I spent the last several weeks struggling with my June recital. Still a few little details to work out but for the most part, DONE. If only the baseball season would wait a few more weeks so attendance can improve after this winter... or not. Season after season... what is the line from the Paul Simon song, The Boxer ? Changes after changes we are more or less the same.

I know I posted this someplace else, but here are most of our costumes...

Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/0418.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/637_cat.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/660_cat.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/055_cat.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/0460_cat.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/0130_cat.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/0459_cat.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/0487_cat1.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/0353_cat.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/0108_cat.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/0136_cat.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/0229_cat.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/526_cat.jpg'
Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/528_cat.jpg'

there are a few others, and I still have a struggle with the adult tap (as always...) but I estimate the "to do list" about 92% complete.

If I can make it to June without any drama, I will be the happiest woman in this part of crazy land.

Thanks to all who helped fix this diary layout. I'll try to check in over the weekend and update it properly.

Hugs to all

Keep On Dancing*

Comment #10179430 deleted
Removed by Sumayah (204191) on 2014-04-01 22:05:13 Whoops! That's not a April Fool's post!

re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 1)
By Sumayah Comments: 6879, member since Wed Nov 12, 2008
On Tue Apr 01, 2014 10:05 PM
Christine wrote:

Image hotlink - 'http://www.revolutiondance.com/filebin/images/product/category/0130_cat.jpg'


I used this a few years back and adored it. It's still one of my favorites.
re: Homegrown Democrat
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Tue Apr 01, 2014 10:14 PM
^I love this too. The only problem is that the intense dye seems to be made from kelp and it smells like fish when you open the garment bag. They do air out though, but the kids tell me once they are back in the bag after recital, they kind of develop a tell tale odor of something fishy.

I'm so excited to see the pictures of my kids all together when costumes come in. I think most of them blend pretty well together this year and the other stuff I haven't posted here round things out very nicely. I'm starting to get so excited about recital. I just have a very good feeling about this year.

That said, there are a few loose ends are are driving me mad. I thought I finally found a suitable cover for a song I wanted. Well.... program arranged, cheor started, and the background music is just awful. I don't know how I missed it when I stumbled across it. The singer's voice is quite lovely and perfect for what I want to convey. I have a lovely pointe dancer/teacher who is doing it beautifully, but when I heard the cd tonight I cringed. Something to work on.

I feel kind of "out of it" that I didn't have much time to participate in April Fools stuff much here, but the karma dump seems successful, so, dancing fools we may be, but let's face it.... it's good work if you can get it.

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 1)
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Fri Apr 04, 2014 10:39 AM
Edited by Christine (207347) on 2014-04-04 10:51:09 everything feels better when you put it to music!
Edited by hummingbird (128773) on 2014-12-02 11:03:08 Removed a dead link that might be causing the spacing problem


This is why we call them, "Wordsmiths".

And.... a song to go with.



Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Mon Apr 28, 2014 09:47 AM
I haven't written much as I am old enough and almost wise enough to guard my impulses better than I did when I was younger.

It's still April.... a month for fools. "So here I stand a fool for......" some of you know the rest of the quote, but for now, that much will do.

Kate's birthday is the last day of this month. At her funeral, a cousin eulogized her at the end of mass by announcing a facebook page (I swear you can't make this stuff up....) dedicated to small acts of kindness in her memory. The lofty goal? Perform 8 small actions from that day in May to her birthday this week, then go on facebook and brag about it. (I could earn a theology degree writing treatises on this subject.)Hum, the tv show said, Eight Is Enough, but I'm not so sure. Yet, because my beautiful granddaughter asked me to join the page, I did. All three of Kate's children also "joined the initiative" and will be getting the same notifications I get.... ugh.

Some of the posted "Crazy Eights" include, "I pushed the elevator button for a man in a wheelchair and when he got stuck in the entrance way to the doctor's office, I helped push his chair out of the way" (Coincidentally, so she could then enter the same office herself!) Regardless of the general tone of this thing, the children are young and impressionable. I am now grappling with the good old fashioned, "What to do? What to do?"

Kate was so much more than what they all pretended she was.

In the last several years, I have tried to guide her children in a way I knew she would have, in ways these other people could never understand. They NEVER volunteered for anything or participated in any way in anything that did not directly benefit them or their own. The paid their own way. Period. And just my opinion, but the people they have become are not kind.

I am so tempted to post on "Crazy Eights" but the whole idea of bragging about things we should all be doing everyday is just repugnant to me. Since her death, I have forced (and yes... they are kids and there is great resistance from the other family...)to do many wonderful things for the Senior Citizen center where I volunteer, the library (their mom was a teacher and loved books)the church, Make A Wish, and without making a fuss over it... a million every day things. As long as these children have to swim in this gene pool and drink the Kool-aide I am torn..... to post of not to post.

That is the question. Eight for Kate, or Eight is Enough?

Still pondering.

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Wed Apr 30, 2014 11:02 PM
Well, this morning there was a post on the Eight Page and just before midnight I posted for the kids. I'm still not sure it was the right thing to do, but tomorrow would be too late so I just did it.

I may regret it tomorrow, but the beauty of facebook is I can delete it if I do. Hopefully the kids will be relieved that the writing assignment is over.

Time to embrace a new challenge.

I am trying to plan a "Wish Countdown" for a 17 year old girl going to Maui in July. I was excited about it at first because I know a bit about Hawaii, but I want it to be really special and it's hard when you don't know the kid (which I don't...)

At the moment I'm flirting with surf boards, ... we usually do a "peel off a sticker" or "move the picture (attached to a stick)" each day, or week, depending on the trip. I did one for Harry Potter World a few months ago and it was great! I did a large brick wall (Platform 9-3/4) covered with bottles of butterbeer. After all the bottles were removed, it showed the instructions on hot to hit the wall to get to the Hogwarts Express. It was a big hit.

Maybe something like this, where she peels off one surf board every day to reveal a view of whales frolicing off Maui? (although the whales will be back up in Alaska in July....)
Image hotlink - 'http://api.ning.com/files/*bGDdhpg-iWPqDF4nd889fppcNGZHN5LF6cLeAAzyXiz-A4BOLCYuuDGUgP5kSrgtbD4l3rPDMwYs6k-zMb-7kgKZna50I-N/1198_surfboards_32k.jpg'
I'd love suggestions if anyone has any.

Time for bed

Will write tomorrow.

Happy May Day to all.

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 1)
By kandykanePremium member Comments: 16415, member since Mon May 01, 2006
On Thu May 01, 2014 09:43 AM
Maybe you could find out of she has a desire to learn hula, you could incorporate that theme. I'd hate to get her hopes up about the whales when it's the wrong time of year, although the surf boards are really cute. Maybe use dolphins instead of whales? Or maybe a combination of whales, dolphins and sea turtles. Will she be snorkeling?

kk~
re: Homegrown Democrat
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Sun May 04, 2014 06:29 AM
Edited by Christine (207347) on 2014-05-04 06:54:14 oops
^Thanks for these suggestions.

She wants to try the foods, see fire twirling, try hula dancing, and see sea turtles. They get to choose three activities and her's are a glass bottom boat ride, luau, and Maui Ocean Center.

I think you're right about the sea turtles. I'll see if I can find some kind of "Sea Life Park" type sea scape or something similar and have it revealed as the surf boards disappear.

I was thinking of making it a little bit "3D" with the surf boards. I know I've seen some kind of balsa wood pieces for sale someplace. Another work in progress.....

We did a Disney recital theme last year and the finale was "Hawaiian Roller Coaster" I'll see if someone knows how to get a clip from the DVD and perhaps we can have the kids send an "instructional" video to her. I'm thinking of doing our end of the year party as a Luau so maybe it will work. I'm not the actual "wish granter" on this wish so I don't know the child or the family at all. I do know she is 17. I'm doing the enhancements and the wish countdown. These are usually much easier for little kids than teens.

Thanks for all the great suggestions. She doesn't leave until July so if anything else comes to mind please feel free to share.

xoxo

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Thu May 08, 2014 11:13 AM
Well, I wasted too many hours in the crafts store yesterday trying to find some balsa wood surf boards like I found online. To no avail...

I ended up with several scrapbooking cut outs and sticks ons and am now assembling some kind of beach scene. It's ok. Not great, but ok.

I have to laugh. I just checked the "instructions" to double check the spelling of the child's name before I starting cementing everything down and noticed a sentence I'd missed before. "Please only us $5.00 - $10.00 to complete the calendar." I am also to mail this directly to the child, which will be $8.00. I would LOVE to know how to produce something like this for under $2.00.

Of course I never submit for these things, it's just "lilies of the field $$", but still, I don't know what the girls in this office are thinking.

While the rubber cement is drying, I'm trying to put together "Fun Facts" to attach to all the3-D foam flip flops I have stuck on the "sand".

I think I'll need about 60 but any number in that general neighborhood will do. This will be an interesting test as to how much interesting crap I actually remember about Hawaii.

Again, suggestions welcome....

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Mon Jun 23, 2014 10:49 PM
Edited by Christine (207347) on 2014-06-23 22:55:56
Edited by hummingbird (128773) on 2014-12-02 11:04:11 Removed a dead link that might be causing the spacing problem
It's been a while. I've been remiss in keeping up with this and of course this is yet another source of great guilt as so many members boosted it along to fix the new formatting problem.

To finish the Hawaii wish discussion.... I ended up writing close to 80 Hawaiian Fun Facts and attached them to the back of cut out paper surf boards with instructions to remove one a day until departure day. I finished it the day I wrote my last entry here and sent it off.

Funny... I thought things would slow down a bit after I finished up the wish stuff but as always, nature abhors a vacuum.

I am happy to say, the activities consuming my time instead of writing diary entries were good investments. Family, friends, and most time intensive of all...recital.

I am happy to report, it went well. I am so blessed to have a wonderful group of families this year and their kids are a beautiful reflection of their upbringing. I don't think I've ever had such a "Dream Team" without having a few challenges in the mix. It was almost too good to be true. Blessed is kind of overused these days but it is truly the most appropriate word for this year.

In addition to the wonderful families, something that should have been a huge detriment actually worked out. Enrollment was pitiful this year. We also had so many snow cancellations it would have been impossible to make up everything and keep our recital schedule if not for the fact that enrollment was pitiful (!) and there was lots of studio time available for make ups. When we had our 9th snow day, early in January, I immediately added three extra days of make ups and encouraged everyone to attend, even if they hadn't had a cancellation yet. By the time recital came along, most of them had so many extra classes they were confident and justifiably proud of their performances.

The finale was the "funnest" finale ever. One little girl bounced out on a hoppity hop, invited the next group who filled the stage with hula hoops and smiles, then the boys came in on skate boards, followed by girls on scooters (one at a time, idea stolen from Matilda),hopscotching, dancing with very large dolls, some hand clap games from the pointe dancers, some jump ropes, base ball gloves, and a quick bow and salute to the audience. ... and the crowd went wild.

The best part for me was the mistakes.

Really.

The most dramatic number of the show had a big flub. Five lyrical dancers coming from five points and one of them froze. The others just smiled bigger, tried to guide her with their eyes, and then just kept on dancing while she recovered and danced on. I am just so proud of these kids. Their growth has been incredible.

The audience was appreciative and lingered at the reception afterward even though it was Fathers Day. Because our theme was Toys and Gameswe had cakes that looked like LEGOS and frozen orange juice "rubber duckies" to float in the punch bowl. I bought the mold at Easter time and was thrilled to have a way to use it again.
Image hotlink - 'http://soapdelinews.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/Easter-Peeps-inspired-silicone-mold-500x309.jpg'

Our final studio celebration was the first morning after the last day of school so the kids had something exciting to look forward to as soon as school was over. We did Ice Cream For Breakfast,and certificates and "prizes", then everyone danced the whole show together and went home happy. I am really going to miss these kids the next few weeks.

Two birthday's in the past month. Birthday cakes are so much fun when kids are little.

^The one year old did not smash his smash cake. He picked the Cheerios off it one at a time and that was that.

We also had a baby shower to attend. A granddaughter is expected in July. Very exciting.

I'm sure there is more to report but sadly, it's time for bed.

Hugs to all

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Fri Jul 11, 2014 07:54 PM
I am so blessed.

One of the families at my studio has a wonderful grandpa, who is an Emmy award winning cameraman. Every year for the last several years, he films and edits our recital. Before he did this, it cost me close to a grand every year and the parents had to pay almost $40. for a copy. He does this out of the goodness of his heart and does the best job I've ever seen.

I just watched the video a few hours ago. The man is a genius. He edited out the big glitch and mercifully, if you didn't know "something happened" you'd think it was just a dramatic moment with the lighting.

I wish I was more tech savy. I'd love to share some of it here with y'all. My bucket list includes mastering a few 21st century skills, but so far...well.... patience is a virtue.

On a sadder note...

I'm a bit concerned about a few longtime, much loved DDN members, these days. Some are quiet, some are missing, some are depressed, and some are PAST THEIR DUE DATES (although I can't wait for the big announcement about TODAY!) The most unpleasant disturbance is the ugly tone of this on going nonsense www.dance.net . . .

On one hand, I greatly appreciate the impulse of many to warn the unsuspecting about possible fraud. And fair is fair... if someone is accused of something, they should have the right to clear their name, or defend themselves.... by all means. However, this ugliness has been floating around for a while and as several long time, well respected members comment on the posts or even offer a kind word (which I did in the beginning....)they are accused of all kinds of crazy stuff. It certainly isn't the first time drama has erupted, but I find this especially disturbing because it is so hate filled and threatening.

And everyone is too old for this name calling and slander. I'm starting to feel like a crank. For the first time in my long, LONG, life, I requested that another person be banned from our mist...very unlike me. No, no, no.... not liking myself at the moment!

Soooo

Pollyanna and I have been talking and we think we need to spread a little sunshine. Time for another "un-birthday" party. www.dance.net . . . I realize I can not change the tides myself, but when in doubt, I think some Butter Beer and a few snacks might lighten the mood.

So, I'm off to shop....

xoxo

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 1)
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Wed Jul 30, 2014 10:08 AM
Edited by Christine (207347) on 2014-07-30 10:10:05
I think I may have inadvertently messed up this page with the big picture of the Lion Cake. Sorry.... One of these days I'll learn how to post my own pictures properly.

The granddaughter is here. A perfect little beauty.
7 lbs. 9 oz, 20". Full term, healthy, mom is radiant.
Dad is giddy!
We're going to go see her in a few minutes.
Soooo excited.

I haven't posted much lately. My computer got struck by lightening and I'm still learning to use my new one.
More first world problems!

I've also been extremely busy marketing my studio.
All suggestions gleefully accepted.
Every year is a bigger challenge.

On a happy note.... the video of the June recital is GREAT.
It confirms my impression of the show.
The kids were accomplished, happy, and I have every reason
to be very proud of the product as well as the process.

Hooray for me!

(yes, I need a cheerleader, so I might as well do it myself!)

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Thu Jul 31, 2014 08:36 AM
Edited by hummingbird (128773) on 2014-12-02 11:04:58 Removed a dead link that might be causing the spacing problem


Some days are easier than others.

My new granddaughter is the most beautiful baby. Just perfect. I am grateful for her and her wonderful parents who clearly adore her and each other.

But there is always a cloud...

She was born in the same hospital where our Kate died.... or rather.... where she was resuscitated several times and eventually put on life support (read death prolongation). It was hard to even enter the building.

I tried to focus on the memories of two other grandchildren entering the world via this hospital, Kates's two oldest, and of course that too was bitter sweet.

This time last year I was deeply engaged in planning my friend Karen's "Irish Wake", which she wanted to have before she passed so she wouldn't miss anything! I try to remember her that day, and not the way she was the last time I visited her at hospice.

Growing old is not for the faint of heart. The simple mathematics of this reality is, the more blessings, the greater the probability of great loss. I have been blesses. Very blessed. But some days it's harder than others to count blessings without shedding a few tears. :C

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Mon Aug 04, 2014 08:01 AM
Edited by hummingbird (128773) on 2014-12-02 14:16:48 I think this one's causing some problems too.
Very busy week.

Stumbled across this and had to share.

I am constantly amazed at how people engage in hostilities
on facebook. And with total strangers! Ugh.... we humans!

So.... some advice to the youngsters who want to waste their youth and good looks on nonsense....



Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Sun Sep 14, 2014 05:12 PM
I know this diary has been sadly neglected of late but I just noticed it was actually started two years ago so perhaps there is hope. ... I was sad to find that once again the Cookie Swap "expired". (These things happen when working with perishable products. )

Old friends were discussing "re-creating" ourselves from time to time and one of them posted this today.

Image hotlink - 'https://scontent-a-iad.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xaf1/v/t1.0-9/p296x100/1797574_10152284894483281_354014505_n.jpg?oh=2c77ad647731671634491c4b67762351&oe=5499FAA9'

Add a, "heart of artichoke" and a few others and this might be the new me...

It's a thought. Random though it may be.

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 1)
By hummingbird Comments: 10419, member since Mon Apr 18, 2005
On Tue Sep 23, 2014 08:37 AM
You could also add a couple of ladies fingers, also known as Okra :)

Sorry for the late reply, it's dance season again, all is good but crazy busy.

And congratulations on the new grand baby!
re: Homegrown Democrat
By schuhplattlerPremium member Comments: 3037, member since Sat Dec 23, 2006
On Sun Sep 28, 2014 04:24 PM
Re. the Walt Whitman quote above:
I would go a step further: What is true for you is what you have observed for yourself, and when you lose that, you have lost everything.
re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 1)
By Dream_chaserPremium member Comments: 25854, member since Thu Jul 26, 2001
On Sun Sep 28, 2014 07:46 PM
OMG, Christine, I did not know that you had a diary on here! I am hooked! Now I have to follow it. I love it! I did not read it all, but will be a new fan. Hugs!!!
re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 1)
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Fri Nov 21, 2014 08:07 AM
Edited by hummingbird (128773) on 2014-12-02 10:57:46 Edited at members request.
It's been too long. I'm not sure I have the presence of mind to write a coherent entry here but if I don't, this diary will expire like the last one and will only add to my deep feelings of failure.

Where to start? Where to end? The profound questions of life as I know it.

Sad to see some of the photos vanished... I'll never understand the subtleties of computers.. so it is just a little difficult to figure out where I left off, although the dates are a good clue.

Pollyanna had me convinced that we had used up all our bad luck for a while, and the birth of a beautiful, healthy, baby girl seemed to confirm her belief. We celebrated the birthdays of two grandsons, one in May, one in June, and expected to have a relaxing summer recovering from all the losses of the past two years. Two weeks after the first celebration we learned that the "other grand dad" had liver cancer. He died two weeks ago. I am just gutted. The nicest man on earth. Kind, gentle, loved by all. His wife is too young for social security (55)and they were both full time working people who needed two incomes to pay the bills. Of course this is NOTHING... it's only money.... but watching yet another much loved extended family suffer through this... again... well, I'm surprised I'm not better at this at this point. The up side was that he was surrounded by all of us who loved him so well for so long and the end was quick. That's the best I can do, Pollyanna... sorry.

I am trying to not dwell on the sadness, and not let anger (one of the most exercised phases of grief...)possess me, BUT.... I don't understand why he wasn't allowed to eat mj cookies from Denver to ease his pain. When he was first "gifted" with them and some "Elixirs" he reported being able to sleep better, and eat better. He said it was the only thing that really managed all he had to manage. When it showed up in his blood work, the Docs went NUTS... REALLY? He was just living in the wrong state, I guess. If he lived in Colorado, he would have been allowed to ease his pain. He was born in Love Canal,NY..(Google it... and had liver cancer at a young age...IMAGINE ....)and lived in PA where fracking has pushed TONS of radon into the ground water, but the legislation in THOSE states allowed him to be poisoned by the environmental pirates, but not allowed any herbal relief. I also wish he'd had his dog with him at hospice. Such a small thing, but the last time I saw him he was hoping to be able to go home to die... he said he missed his dogs. So freaking sad.

Enough of that.... I've been way more opinionated and political than I should be....

Life at the studio is .... well.... "the best of times, the worst of times". A wonderful young lady, a beautiful pointe dancer, found her way to me last year. She has been a God Send. She is skilled, patient, kind, and a wonderful coach for one of my older girls as well as some of the younger ballet students. I fear her day job is going to move her in a year at which point you can expect to read my complaints and rants of self pity. For now though...the best of times. I took her and another older student to NY on Halloween to take class at The City Center with a dance friend and I was so, soooooo proud of both of them. Beautiful young ladies, inside and out.

We did a few summer activities at the studio and did a few community performances, all of which had me feeling great about everything. Two of the adult dancers and a few parents have become my very best support group and they help in every little way without acting like they are put out. I love them so much! There was some predictable nastiness from another local studio, but our kids rose above it all. Our performance was dedicated to the kids of Make A Wish and it was soooo good. Classy, fun, accomplished, entertaining. The other studio promoted their business shamelessly... on the backs of children..., made fools of the kids (awful dancing,stupid choreography, and trashy costumes...)and to my great dismay... the audience didn't seem to notice. This is the sad truth about recreational studios... most of the time the parents are so clueless they can't tell the good from the bad or the ugly.

At first, I didn't care. I gave the kids a great experience, they had pizza at the studio every night the week before the last show and then had cider and donuts night with a Halloween craft evening and I though all was well. Then, on Tuesday, I had two moms (who have been a problem from the start) double team me complaining about our new tuition schedule. NOW? I didn't hear any questions when it was posted in JULY! And the reason for it was...frankly... these two families! (they both owe me money from last year and seem to feel that simply telling me they are going to pay me sometime is good enough)

After too many years of being screwed out of June tuition, I changed our payment schedule. Registration was in August... all month. We charge a $15. registration fee which goes toward insurance (they pay half, I pay the other half). Anyone who registered and paid the first payment with registration got to attend our summer intensive FOR FREE. If they registered and just paid the $15.00 but signed the forms, the intensive was half price ($45.00). If they chose to not register early, the first payment and reg fee was due before the first class on Sept. 8 and the second payment was due on Sept 15th (for everyone...) The payment schedule then requires payments every 4 weeks or so. I published the schedule and a calendar for the whole year on the website. Our recital fee is the same.... 1/3 due by Dec. 15, Jan. 15, and Feb. 15. I posted a "Just a few little reminders" notice about the upcoming due dates and after grumbling on the side lines for a while,trying to stir up everyone who does pay on time without grumbling) they both said they didn't know, didn't see why they should pay in advance (but I should wait for LAST year's costume money....)and blah, blah, blah.

The biggest offender missed three weeks of classes before the October performance and then sent her two kids, one of whom only had 3 lessons EVER, to the pizza party and rehearsals every night but then missed two more weeks after the show. Mom complained LOUDLY to every. single. parent. in the studio when I put her inexperienced 7 year old in the back line. When she came in on Tuesday... November 18th... she said, "She doesn't want to come... I don't have to pay, right? She'll be back in January." I said, um, yes, you do have to pay. I was here. The class was here. Make ups are available. I spent a week giving both your kids one on one private attention to catch them up for the show and the Christmas show is two weeks away. The kid who is quitting was in a duet with another beginner and now I have to re-work the show. and... NO she can't come back in January. You don't go to class for two weeks, take off two months, come back for a few parties, take off for another two months and then get to be in the FRONT LINE in the recital. SORRY! UGH.

The other one.... I won't even bore you with those details but as I expect round two with her tonight I many be back to report on them later. I am feeling like such a failure. I have NEVER denied a family or any child ANYTHING. I posted the notice, but NEVER say a word to parents in front of others or their kids. BOTH these women started on me after class, after stirring up trouble with the other parents,rudely interrupting the end of class, and in FRONT OF THEIR KIDS. I keep telling myself that trash will be trash and I shouldn't let it bother me, but I can't help it. I am seriously beginning to doubt my own perceptions.

So much for the worst of times....

Time to end the pity party.

Sorry this is such an awful entry...and thanks to anyone who is actually still reading.... At least the diary won't expire and eventually my crazy mind will grow quiet and perhaps I'll be able to write properly again.

I hope everyone is well. Things are so slow here on DDN I've kind of lost touch with too many members. Hugs to all xoxo

Keep On Dancing*
re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 1)
By hummingbird Comments: 10419, member since Mon Apr 18, 2005
On Tue Dec 02, 2014 02:25 PM
Hugs to you! It never ceases to amaze me how just a couple of people can make life so unpleasant for those around them because they refuse to believe the rules apply to them too. Hugs again.
re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 1)
By Tansey Comments: 2367, member since Fri Mar 27, 2009
On Thu Dec 04, 2014 08:42 AM
Christine, you are the nicest, kindest person. I'm sorry those horrible parents take advantage of your goodness. Some people just think the world revolves around them and the hell with everybody else.

It sounds like the other granddad's doctor was clueless. Why not let a patient in hospice care have whatever works to ease his pain? It would have been a kindness if they had allowed his dogs to visit him.

Here's hoping 2015 will be an easier year all around.
re: Homegrown Democrat (karma: 1)
By ChristinePremium member Comments: 6819, member since Wed Feb 04, 2009
On Tue Dec 23, 2014 10:52 PM
hummingbird wrote:

Hugs to you! It never ceases to amaze me how just a couple of people can make life so unpleasant for those around them because they refuse to believe the rules apply to them too. Hugs again.


I wish I could give you karma again for this statement. True true, true.

Sometimes, we see it coming. Other times... sucker punch. I won't rob my own joy by going into the details but "unpleasant" does not begin to cover something that happened after our Christmas show. I was gutted.

I know this "unpleasant" family has huge, HUGE, problems including a history of abuse. I shouldn't have been surprised by any of it. That didn't stop me from being so depressed I was physically ill. Then something so wonderful happened, it was like a miracle cure for the 16 days of grief I'd been processing.

When I arrived at my studio yesterday I discovered that one of the families had surprised me by decorating the dance room with all kinds of fun Pinterest stuff they made themselves. I am so touched. I cry almost every time I think of it. Their mom told me while the kids were hunting for some of the posters they would say, "Miss Christine would NEVER say something mean like that", in response to some that said things like, "Because I said so, that's why", or a number of other snarky sayings. This is the most priceless gift of the season.

When I got there today just looking at the love this family poured into this present humbled me to the point of more tears. I am so sorry I let myself be hurt by people who hurt their own children when I am so blessed to have so many wonderful people in my life.

I took pictures on my i pod and if I ever figure out how to post them I will.

Time to bake...

Keep On Dancing*
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