#1406 The Christmas carols

My first intention for tonight was to head on down to the local carols in the park for some festive cheer and fun.

‘Twas not to be. Hubbie was tired from work and not ‘feeling it.’

We settled in for a night of carols on TV instead – if I couldn’t have them in person I had to have them someway, right?

“Don’t they do those on Christmas Eve?” Hubbie asked me.

Automatically I responded –

“Channel 7 do Carols in the Domain the Saturday before Christmas, in Sydney… Channel 9 do Carols by Candlelight on Christmas Eve from Melbourne.”

BAM! Just like that. All Christmas worded-up and everything.

Well I have been watching them all my life, I SHOULD KNOW.

Knowing the Wiggles were on in the first part of the night, we all sat down while baby girl asked repeatedly when they were going to be on.

She totally made up for it when they did arrive on screen, and she danced along to them while we watched her, revelling in her happiness and joy.

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There wasn’t a lot of quiet in our house tonight. We weren’t all seriously watching the carols and singing along with our flashlight features turned on on our phones… we were talking over one another, tuning in and out to songs on telly, singing along to some and talking about our goals for next year and just having the best time together.

We didn’t need no community park concert. We were all we needed.

And then I looked outside and – YES! – our new solar Christmas light was working!

It looked magical ๐Ÿ™‚

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My memories of Christmas carols stem way back. Growing up on Christmas Eve I’d sit in the lounge room with my Dad as they played, and Mum would come in and out, busy in her preparations for a big family Christmas lunch the next day. We would then wait up ’til midnight and exchange presents, wishing each other a Merry Christmas, and go to bed excited and buzzing that Christmas was finally here.

They are the best memories.

Well we made some of our own tonight. And though the night actually started out pretty average and flat… as soon as the carols started, something magical occurred in our lounge room.

It was, Christmas magic. โ™ฅ

#1394 The first Christmas concert

You can be sure when your child first enters the education system, you will quickly encounter a lot of firsts.

Their first excursion.

Their first award.

Their first sick bay visit.

Their first bestie.

Their first fight…

Their first, Christmas concert.ย ๐ŸŽ„๐ŸŽถ

“We’ve got a good number of years of this ahead of us,” I whispered to Hubbie as we lay on the picnic blanket on the school’s lawn this evening.

It was warm, and most of it was before the sudden 20 degree drop in temperature signalling the cool change.

There were Christmas songs… both in and out of key.

Traditional carols and contemporary tunes.

Daggy Christmas jokes: “What do you call someone scared of Santa?”

“Claus-trophobic.”

๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿคช๐Ÿ™„

Oh God I know, they were so bad you had to laugh.

Choreographed kiddy dance numbers and a Christmas raffle draw. The Christmas concert had it all.

But mostly for us, it had our girl, up with the rest of the preps singing “Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer.”

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That’s her before the show, telling me to stop taking pics… can you see?

(That’s okay, you’re not meant to ๐Ÿ˜‚)

It was long, it was windy, and we were hungry… but to be honest, I loved the off-key notes.

The kids dancing off-stage before they walked on to their own show.

The strong change that blew hats and empty water bottles across the oval, cooling us all down.

I evenย loved the daggy jokes.

I generally love Christmas, and I love how baby girl’s school seems to really love it too.

๐Ÿฅฐโค

 

 

 

#1392 Front row at The Wiggles

You know the other day when I said “I’m done,” because I was so happy and grateful to be part of a writing group?

“I made it.”

Well today I made it in another way.

We did.

It’s only taken us 9 shows. But today we were front row at The Wiggles concert.

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๐Ÿ˜ฎ

It was the best. It was an incredible experience all on its own, without the Wiggly high-fives, smiles, and don’t forget that repeated eye contact.

๐Ÿ˜ƒ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿคฉ

Baby girl had Emma, the yellow, and also ballet and Scottish dancing, bow-wearing, goat-loving wiggle, high five her and point that she saw her flashing bow from up on the stage.

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OMG. Talk about a total childhood high.

How the hell am I meant to top this experience?

Just as well. Sis and I never know which show will be the last with our kids, and so every moment shared together is so precious and such a beautufil blessing.

And so if it is, it was the biggest highlight EVER.

(Just between you and me though, I think today raised the bar and made them even bigger fans than before…) ๐Ÿ˜‰

๐Ÿ”ต๐Ÿ”ด๐Ÿ’›๐Ÿ”ฎ

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#1254 The first production

Hubbie and I are always telling baby girl she can pick any extra-curricular activity she likes… like sport, or a musical instrument.

But tonight another area of possible interest emerged…

Because tonight, baby girl was a penguin.

She was in her Madagascar school production ๐Ÿ™‚

She had no leading role. Cuter though, she was part of a whole swagger of penguins (more like, a waddle) and they were all dressed in black and white, wearing white vests with ties, and orange hats on their head to serve as beaks.

Oh my. How my eyes welled up.

They came on stage twice during the show. We found her amidst the groups, pointed and clapped and cheered. At the end of the show the entire school came onto the stage, and the preps were at the front, youngest as they are…

And guess who was clear and centre in front of us?

Our โ™ฅ

I tell you, watching her perform her moves, sing along with the group and make out the actions, looking out into the crowd while beaming happily, my heart actually SUNG.

My eyes welled up so much, I could barely see. Hubbie and I waved at her excitedly. Blew her kisses. Gave her plenty of thumbs up.

And I couldn’t help but be transported to when I was 16. Sure, a tad older than baby girl. But I was in year 10, and remember being part of about 7 acts for our end of school revue.

I remember the buzz clearly. I remember the feeling of excited anticipation as people rushed behind the curtain. It was dark, and it was all happening in a frenzied quiet.

It was magic.

I remember that fondly. Sure I never went into that line of work, but I developed a tremendous amount of respect for those that do, as I got a taste of it myself… I felt what it was like, to be a performer. Where the world is your stage…

I don’t know what the future holds for baby girl. But I do know that she had a great time tonight, and that is as good a start as any to start creating good first-time memories… โ™ฅ

(waddle waddle waddle).

#1239 Princess fun at Disney on Ice

Hubbie and I sat, giggling and sneaking looks to one another while also peeking beside us at baby girl.

She was singing, warbling… she was letting it rip.

“Let it go! Let it go! Don’t hold it back anymore!”

It had been a long 4 months that she had been waiting to see Disney on Ice. Even so, the trip in today seemed almost as long… trains, then disruptions to trains which meant replacement buses, and oh, the drama! The angst! The hell!

It really did feel like forever to get to that moment… and even then, at the start of the show…

“When are the princesses coming?”

“Where’s Ana?”

This girl was just not content with only Mickey Mouse, Dory and Nemo or Toy Story. She had come to see some freaking ice, and sparkle.

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So when the group of Disney princesses DID emerge, we were enthralled at their ice skating genius, and gasping out loud when Rapunzel did this number in the air with Eugene:

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Incredible! I think the parents were thinking as we were – “shit… Disney has upped their game!”

All of these air acrobatics definitely had her rapt, but nothing more so than when her favourite sisters FINALLY emerged from behind the big curtain.

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“Don’t hold it back anymore!”

Oh no, baby girl held NONE of it back. We just let her be and tried to not let her, you know, catch us giggling at her, being all 5 going onto 16 and all ๐Ÿ˜‰

 

 

#1236 Wiggly love and luck

My sister and I must have some blue, red, yellow and purple fairies floating over our heads.

No, I lie. Those colourful fairies are totally hanging over our kids.

Because every time we go to a Wiggles show, be it the end-of-year Christmas extravaganza in the city, or a mid-year, smaller local theatre, like where we were today, well, we not only have a great time…

We get a tremendous amount of luck.

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We were questioning today how long this would last… not our luck, but our kids devotion to the Wiggles. We keep wondering at each concert, will this be their last? Will it be OUR last?

We laughed, yet quietly I think we would have been quite devastated.

At the smaller shows it’s easy to come into close contact with the colourful quartet. A couple of them will walk through the crowd, collecting presents, cards and flowers from the kids, and so we have had quite a few claim-to-fame moments… and even at the last show we were at before this one, the ENORMOUS one in the city, well baby girl was fortunate enough to have her sign picked up by Anthony, the true blue original Wiggle (after she jumped out and thrust it at him!) and as he ran onto the stage he then proceeded to read it out to the entire crowd.

We were pretty star struck.

Nothing could really top though, the sweetest of moments that was today. Today they had their ‘helpers’ collecting gifts from the crowd, and baby girl had given forth her yellow flowers with card inside, while my nephew had handed over the sign that he and my sister had decorated with love.

I watched with a keen eye, as our pressies were brought up on stage.

And as present by present, cards and random crafts were passed onto purple Wiggle Lachie and read out, baby girl’s flowers were next presented to him, which received extreme giddiness from baby girl beside me at the acknowledgement of them…

And then they read out my nephew’s poster.

It was the most beautiful of moments. Not only did he stand up and receive a heartfelt round of applause for his artwork, but Lachie went on to read the note that said my nephew had been seeing the Wiggles for 10 years now, following on from his big brother being a Wiggles fan before him…

And wowโ€ฆ just WOW. The moment went on and on, and in doing so, the love grew stronger, and stronger.

We were all so touched. I think no one more so but my nephew.

And as the show wound up at the end of the evening, after yet again an amazing and entertaining performance, I couldn’t help but think, that the red curtain wasn’t going down in our kids hearts, anytime soon.

Even Simon made sure of that.

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โ™ฅโ™ฅโ™ฅโ™ฅ

 

#1109 MMM-bopping along

Today, my 13 year-old self would have been really happy with me.

She would have been rapt. Delighted. Screaming “yes yes yes!” and punching her fists into the sky in frenzied delight.

It would have been far from the typical teenage scene of sulking, crying and whinging to no end. Which is what I did, when I found out I couldn’t see Hanson when they were scheduled to come to a shopping centre appearance back in 1997.

Granted I couldn’t go because I was heading overseas. It kinda didn’t occur to my parents when they booked the European tickets, that a short time later I would be completely obsessed and enthralled with all things HANSON.

But nonetheless, I locked myself up in the toilet and b-a-w-l-e-d.

Ahhh, 13 year-olds. I never did get the opportunity to see them elsewhere during my Hanson-phase, and after several years, I moved onto obsessing over other artists.

But I thought of that girl as I arrived at the Palais Theatre tonight.

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Here we finally were.

22 years after the fact. 22! I observed 30 and 40-somethings arriving in pairs and groups, older now, with more responsibilities, more life experience. Many pregnant. Occasional males accompanied their once manic partners, and I had to think of how committed they were to be joining them tonight… I also thought back to how I would have been if I were seeing them in the height of their fame… the height of my obsession!

“I LOVE YOU TAYLOR!”

Surely I would have screamed out those words, only to be drowned by other fanatical girls clawing and reaching for the front stage eager to get them a piece of the trio of brothers from Tulsa Oklahoma.

And yet tonight, in the crowd of girls who had lived through the last two decades, I still heard it.

“I love you Zac!”

Oh man. Some women were still pining.ย 

Tonight was therefore an amazing experience. I bopped along and listened at the back of the stalls, taking in the orchestra and instrumental notes, the voices that had matured well since then, grown into their own… and I reminisced.

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It is a lovely thing to reminisce.

It brought me an appreciation of them, beyond the teenage fan phase, beyond the blonde hair, beyond the high notes, beyond the posters…

I felt the authenticity, the music, and their passion. It was a truly great night, and you know what? I might just have to see them again next time they come.

I clapped. I watched intently. I listened to the instruments and observed carefully how one song blended into the next. The drums, piano, guitar. I tried to take it all in.

I think I’m coming full circle. I think I’m becoming a real fan. โ™ฅ