Saturday, January 11, 2014

Gift giving: the experience

Both sets of grandparents were very sporting in our Christmas wish of toning down the toys, and gifted accordingly.  As I mentioned, we got lots of games from Joe's parents, and last night we had our first official Friday Night Game Night! It went GREAT, the last time we really tried to play games as a family was probably a year ago, and we gave it up for a year because it went so poorly. Now, of course, the kids are a year older and Caroline participated more cooperatively on my team (still not ready to play on her own), and Eli was KILLING it! He really grasped the rules of each game and followed along - he even grasped a competitive streak and declared, "Bonky bonk bonky! Bonk bonk bonk!" whenever he would knock someone back to home in Trouble. We are looking forward to making Friday Night Game Night a long-term tradition, since games are one of the best ways to connect with ornery teens.

My parents gifted "experiences" for each child - they picked a class that each child would enjoy and made a small certificate saying what class, plus some token item to go along with it.  Patrick got art lessons last year and LOVED them, so he got art lessons again this year; his token was a wooden airplane that he could paint and assemble. Eli and Caroline each got gymnastics lessons with an outfit that they could wear to go to them. Caroline has taken this gymnastics thing to heart and will only take off her gymnastics outfit to put on pajamas, to put on a church dress (though that's even a struggle), or to put on a swimsuit as a replacement because her gymnastics leotard is dirty. She told me, "I bewong in gymnastics." Not, "I go to," or "I like," but "I belong" - it sounded like she was declaring her destiny to me! Too bad she has some height in her genes, I seriously doubt a girl destined for 5'8" or above is also destined for gymnastics. Not only does she want to WEAR "her gymnastics" (leotard) every day, she wants to go to class EVERY DAY. When her whining reaches a fever pitch I am forced to get creative, so we have put together some twirlers so she can practice rhythmic gymnastics, and cobbled together a balance beam from books and a 2x4.

I have videos of the kids twirling and balancing, but not pictures - sadly, blogger doesn't feel like uploading any of my videos today. Instead, here is a preview of some actual gymnasts doing rhythmic gymnastics. Very fun to watch :)

Hopefully in the summer I can get the kids excited about synchronized swimming through some clever Youtube video selections!

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