This week, Bekah and I went to see a production of The Nutcracker ballet.
It was a "last" for us, the last time any of us can go to the annual school performance. (A local ballet company produces The Nutcracker annually, Prior to their regular performances, they invite public school, private school, and home school students to a daytime performance at a reduced rate.)
As we watched, I reminisced.
As we watched, I reminisced.
I thought about the first time I took my children to see The Nutcracker. Kristin was 13, Ryan was 11, and Kati (now 25) was a brand new baby, only a month old! Our homeschool friends, many of them meeting Kati for the first time, oohed and ahhed over our sweet new baby. I suppose she was soothed by the beautiful music, because she nursed and slept through the whole thing. Whew!
I believe Ryan went back another time, perhaps two. Then there was the year that Ron was off, doing a major home project and Ryan begged to stay home and help. Home improvement sounded loads better than the ballet apparently! (Recently, he told me that going to The Nutcracker was "three hours of ballet torture.")
So our Nutcracker tradition became a girls' tradition. Kristin, Kati, and me. Then Kati, Bekah, and me. Later, Kati, Bekah, and me, and Kristin and Maddie. Then Kati, Bekah, and me and Kristin, Maddie, and Alaine.
|The year the girls took binoculars (opera glasses?)|
The year that Bekah was potty training, we went to see The Nutcracker. As the second scene opened to the Land of Sweets, Kati leaned over and whispered, "I see pee-in-the-potty candy."
She was right. I had a Mason jar at home filled with gum drops. Each time Bekah had a potty success, she was rewarded a gum drop. So instead of seeing gum drops on the stage, we all saw pee-in-the-potty candy!
We attended most years. Then there was the one year I thought we'd pass, only to find out that Kati and Bekah were dismayed that I hadn't bought tickets. Please, can we go see The Nutcracker? I emailed my friend to see if any were available. There were! I told her that if there hadn't been any tickets left, I may have had to dress in costume and dance all the parts in my kitchen. My friend said that she'd be tempted to withhold the tickets just to come and see that!
Fortunately (for all of us), she sold me the tickets!
One year on Nutcracker morning, I had a phone call. My sweet friend who was dying had asked for me to come and sing hymns with her. I took Kati and Bekah to meet Kristin and her girls at the auditorium, and drove over to spend those precious moments with Ann. It is a bittersweet memory for me, but one that I treasure. Ann went to be with the Lord a few days later.
This fall I somehow missed the email announcing the sale of the school performance tickets. A few weeks ago, I asked Bekah if she'd like to go to The Nutcracker (as a student) one last time and she (of course) said yes, so I tried to track down tickets. In fact, I tried four different avenues and hit dead ends. Sadness.
On the night before the performance, I said, "Bekah, it looks like we're not going to be able to go to The Nutcracker this year. I just can't find tickets."
Not ten minutes later, I opened my email and a friend in a local homeschool yahoo group announced that she had three extra tickets for sale! The Lord's provision to us? I think so!
|A grainy selfie, but I love it!|
So my girl (who has "loved The Nutcracker since the first time I saw it") and I were able to keep a much-loved tradition and attend the ballet together.