Instead of the traditional recital format where you have to sit through an interminable succession of coma-inducing dance numbers, the Colorado Ballet Academy coordinated an impressive production of Swan Lake that integrated performances from all student levels. It was engaging and fun to watch, and my daughter happened to be the most beautiful and talented ballerina on stage.
We had tricked the boy into believing that our spring break trip to Maui was in honor of his birthday so we were off the hook for throwing a party. Still, you can’t not do anything for a little boy’s birthday. Birthdays still matter to an eight year old, and it felt wrong not to celebrate in some way. So, I invited a couple of the boy’s friends to a play date at Spider Monkey and we made a reservation at Elway’s because the boy requested a steak dinner. I was able to combine the boy’s birthday play date with a play date for the girl and a couple of her friends as well, so I was totally winning at parenting that day. My proudest parenting moment happened at dinner, when Tom asked the boy if he was disappointed that he didn’t have a party and wasn’t getting any presents (even though there were a stack of presents on his bed waiting to surprise him when he got home). With complete sincerity our son replied that he wasn’t disappointed at all because he got everything he wanted: a fun vacation in Hawaii, a play date with his friends at Spider Monkey, and steak and lobster for dinner. He was grateful for what he had and I was so grateful to have this amazing kid as my son. Of course, he was super excited when he walked into his bedroom later that night and found a pile of gifts from various relatives, but that was just icing on the cake.