She’s Our Dancing Queen

The Bug’s dance recital was yesterday. (I let my wife handle the bun this time. You know…for old time’s sake.)

The Bug did a marvelous job. This is her third year of taking dance and quite honestly the first time we could see she was completely into it on stage. She was (basically) on cue with all her moves and had the biggest grin on her face the entire time. It was awesome! Her tap/jazz class danced a rousing choreography of “Call Me Maybe” wearing adorable black and gold outfits, complete with pill box hats. (She didn’t want to wear the hat to pictures till she saw others wearing theirs and realized how cute she was in it. Now she loves it!) The Bug was super excited for the finale when she got to come back on stage with all the others dancers with “Shake It Off” blaring over the speakers. It doesn’t take much for 7 year old to get excited, does it?


In the front yard.

No flash allowed, so this one is a bit unclear. "Call Me"

Back home with Mommy.

Here are some things that amazed me!

  • We stood in line for an hour to get a seat close to the stage so we could pack in like sardines with all the other dance moms, dance dads, dance grandmas, dance cousins, and such. Then we sat in those seats for another 45 minutes waiting for the show to start.
  • We were second in line and somehow wound up in the fifth row.  Still shaking my head over that one.
  • The Bug danced for roughly 3 minutes of a 2 hour program.
  • There were a lot of cute kids and a lot of cute tutus. I know who the cutest one was.
  • This recital was basically geared toward the younger half of the studio’s clientele.  The Bug is far enough along in her dance schooling that we could see the progress she’s made by watching the entry level class.  She’s coming along, but she has a lot of growth yet to go.
  • They had some of the older girls’ dance routines as well to show us what’s to come. Those high school girls are awesome!
  • I saw a lot of dollar signs! I know what one class costs per month plus the one recital outfit. I saw some girls up there a number of times, representing a number of classes. Cha-ching! I’m glad we  just do one class a year!

Overall, it was a great day of dancing and celebrating a year of hard work. It was The Bug’s chance to plan Family Night, and she requested a Korean dinner and ice cream.  A great combination.  One of these days, maybe I’ll share my wife’s recipe for crockpot bulgogi.

Here are some pro tips:

  • Bring flowers for your kid. And don’t go wimpy with grocery store flowers or the flowers they sell in the lobby. Step it up with some big boy flowers. Order some from your local florist.
  • Get there early. Get a good spot in line, then watch the lobby fill up with the latecomers.
  • Don’t dawdle at the door. Remember there is probably a second door to the auditorium and the crazed dance moms on the other side are probably streaming in at breakneck speed to get the prime seats.  Run past the ticket collector and get the top dawg spot for you and your family.
  • Bring snacks, and don’t forget the protein.  You’re in this for the long haul. You need to fuel up with some good food so you aren’t a grump when you pick up your kid.
  • “I’m proud of you, honey.” Practice that a few times then tell your dancer that when you see her.  She worked hard this year.  Tell her how proud you are of her work.

Now, we get the summer off till we start dance season again in September!


The Battle of the Bun

The Bug is a dancer.

Her recital is Saturday, and Tuesday was picture night.  Up till this week, I have missed all dance preparations due to work. I’d swoop in just in time to turn around and leave again, missing all the fun that goes into getting a first grader ready for dance class. But I’ve the heard horror stories, and I’m a bit glad that I get to miss those moments. Let’s say that cooperation is not The Bug’s strong suit when it comes to prepping for dance. However, with my wife’s new job and my newly minted summer break, it all fell on me to get her ready.

I don’t do hair. 

Don’t get me wrong.  I can do a pony tail kinda OK, and we went through a phase where I did Daddy Pony Tails all the time. (Think of an 80s pony tail, sticking out of random places on the head. Now think of it done haphazardly and badly. That’s a Daddy Pony Tail. Try it on your kid.) So, when my wife started talking about putting in a bun with a part on the left side, I looked at her like she was speaking Martian.  This is the same woman who knows I’ve never successfully braided hair in my life.  What is this world coming to?

When the time came, she did OK getting dressed but kept complaining about wearing the hat that goes with her outfit. I don’t know how many times I assured her the hat would be cute on her and the other girls would wear one. Nothing doing.  We thought we put a hole in the very expensive and very required tights I had just pulled out of the package, but it turns out they come with holes in the feet. (What!?!?! Whose crazy idea was that?)  Then, it was bun time.

As I was combing her hair out, she grabbed a ponytail holder and showed me how she could launch it across the room.  Then, she picked another one up and flung it across the room too.  The boy part of me thought, “That’s cool! I’m so proud of you! Let me show you how to do it right.”  The daddy part of me thought, “I know who will clean this up, and it won’t be the little girl flinging these things into the curtains.” In the end, the bun was the only important thing.  Everything else could wait. It was all. about. the. bun. We’ll be finding pony tail holders all summer, but that’s OK.

The first attempt? Let’s not go there.

The second attempt? When I went to grab some bobby pins to seal the deal, The Bug decided to vigorously shake her head back and forth, ruining the bun.  I may have gotten a bit frustrated and threw the bobby pin back into its container.  That’s when I got a scolding from my daughter.  “If I’m not allowed to throw a fit, then you can’t do it either.” You know what? She was right.  I had to apologize on the spot.  And to tell the truth…It was my wimpy bun-making skills that caused the problem.

The third attempt was golden… well, maybe bronze.


It was good enough to head to class and hope someone at the studio could fix my mistakes.  Then again, maybe it would work for pictures. After all, no would actually see the bun.

Pro Tips:

  • Practice before the big game! Olympic athletes don’t start training after the Opening Ceremonies. Don’t make your first bun one that will be recorded for all time!
  • Always have backup.  So glad I had a teenager from the studio ready to help if I couldn’t do it.
  • Ez Bunz.  This product saved my life!
  • Snack time first. I almost forgot to give her a snack, and the lack of food in her belly would have made this a nightmare. Don’t forget the protein!
  • Don’t be afraid to help out. I think I forgot that girls like it when Daddy does girly stuff with them. This may not have been the time to get in the game, but I’m glad I didn’t pawn it off on someone else.
  • Never pitch a fit in front of your kid. Well, I was behind her, but you get the idea. Keep your fits private.

May all your dance recitals be pleasant and your hair experiences be a piece of cake!