Thursday, March 25, 2010

Chaos on a cracker

I think I have mentioned that Kelly takes ballroom dancing lessons on Wednesdays. Her friend Carrie takes them too. There is a big ballroom dancing competition coming up at the end of this month. Carrie will be dancing with the teacher in a "Pro-Am" (professional/amateur) pairing, and there is a pair of middle school students dancing as a couple.

There was a modicum of chaos the last few weeks, when Carrie's mom kind-of, sort-of volunteered me to make Carrie's ball gown. Ouch.

*shakes it off*

Anyways, I finished Carrie's dress (except for the hem) before I went up to Canada last weekend, and I finished up the hem yesterday before bringing the dress to the dance class (so she could practice dancing in the dress).

At the end of the dance class, (I'd stepped out to grab groceries, so I had missed a part of the middle of the class), Kelly was looking like the bird that had swallowed the canary. The teacher came up to me, and said "There's been a bit of a glitch for the competition this weekend. Lori (the middle school student, girl-half of the couple competing) wrecked her knee, and can't compete. Vladimir was hoping to compete, so here is my suggestion: I think Kelly knows most of the steps, and could easily take Lori's place, if you would agree to her doing it."

We stayed after class for an hour, and I watched the teacher put Kelly through her paces as Vladimir's partner. Now, Lori and Vladimir have been dancing as a couple for the last TWO YEARS, and they've been preparing for this competition since before Christmas. I was, to say the least, rather apprehensive. I don't want Kelly to be set up to fail here. And I don't want her walking away from her first competition with a bad taste in her mouth. On the other hand, I know that she was a little disappointed to watch Carrie and Lori prepare for this competition and know that she wasn't going to participate.


In the last 24 hours, I have:

  • registered Kelly with the National Dance Competition Association

  • given Kelly's new NDCA membership information to her teacher so he could register her as an alternate for this competition

  • tried to find 'regulation' dancing shoes for her to wear in competition

  • found a hair net for her (regulations insist on a high bun, secured with a hair net)

  • picked up fabric for a ballgown

  • sewed a ballgown

Yes. You read that right. I have sewed Kelly's dress.

It is not quite complete. I need her to try it on tomorrow morning, and then I will cut it up to the 'regulation' length. I think (but i need to be sure) that it needs to be no more than an inch above the knee, and no more than three inches below the knee. Or it could be the other way around. Either way, I am going to try to hem it RIGHT at the knee. It's a full circle skirt. With a half-circle lining skirt. That's a LOT of hem. I will NOT be doing it by hand.

Kelly has one last rehearsal (this is the thing that is just giving me kittens!) before the competition. Her quick-step is a little scary right now. She stumbles over her feet something fierce. And that is just one of the SIX dances that she is signed up to dance with Vladimir.

Also, this thing has been sold out for a while. There is a possibility that I won't even get a ticket to get in to see her compete on Saturday afternoon. I will throw myself at the feet of the organizers, and beg for mercy, as I hold my camera up to them. She can't do this competition without me documenting every last turn and dip! I *must* photograph this event.

Oh, and to add an extra slice to the chaos pie, Ken's mother comes to stay with us tomorrow morning, and my parents should be arriving tomorrow afternoon. And it's spring break, so this afternoon, I brought the toads home from Nate's class, Kelly's 6th hamster home from her class, and a tank full of praying mantids home from Nate's class.

Did I mention how much I love watching the praying mantis catch prey?

It's calming and soothing. In fact, I think I will go watch them some more.

Ahhhh. I can feel my blood pressure decreasing already...

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