W: It's a good thing I practiced (see earlier blog entry), 'cause this stuff ain't easy. As if the large motor skills aren't challenging enough, my teacher tells me what to do in FRENCH! No one told me about this part of dance.
For instance, this is not, as it may seem, "standing on my tiptoes." This is a "releve."
But I liked it. I like my outfit and I like my teacher. These are the right ingredients for happiness. (I also liked watching the big girls dance across the hall. Whoa.)
And now, Julie here: Seeing the Big Girls was a crazy experience for me, in a very different way. Watching them, I had the very distinct feeling that I was right back there, so distinct I could feel the elastic straps across my feet and smell the shoe leather. No time had passed. I was thirteenish and at the studio as a dancer. Then I saw myself in the enormous mirrors, holding my infant and ushering my preschooler off to her class across the hall. I was not there to roll off my legwarmers and dance (and, shockingly, none of them were mistaking me for a classmate!) I was mom. It was time-warpishly surreal. Wonderful and weird.


W: I was all cozy in my pjs, had my books picked out and was snuggling into bed tonight when I remembered: BALLET CLASS TOMORROW! And I simply could not wait. The tights, the leotard and the shoes had to have a dress rehearsal.
And when I made my intentions clear, I was shocked to meet with no resistance from mom. It may be that we are equally as excited for tomorrow's class--although she doesn't show her enthusiasm with nearly the level of pizazz I got goin' on.


J: They call me Happy Pants. Here's why. This is what I do everytime someone looks at me. In other interesting news, this photo was staged to replicate a shot taken when Winona was my age... The digital image of that moment has been lost in the turnover of software (boo), but we have a hard copy that mom photograhed for the effect of what you see here: The Dean Grossman Girls at age three months (ish).


W: Lest anyone think I'm hogging cyberspace, I just want to make it clear that I would HAPPILY allow Jezebel her time to narrate her version of the day, but she slept through the entire thing, so I'm actually doing us all a favor. Her account of today's events would be rather, shall we say, snoozy. SO, without further ado, a recap of an annual event known as our city's CELEBRATION.

Some may wonder why we choose to live where we do--it requires at least three layovers to get here no matter where your flight originates and, once you're here, three layers of fleece to stay dry. Allow me, then, to revel in this weekend's celebration of all things wonderful about my hometown and share with you my own personal Top 10 Reasons I Love It Here:

#10 The food stores. Locally grown, organic offerings of the earth. Ok, mom made me start with this one. Don't get me wrong, I love me my hippie markets, but it's the chocolate milk treat that I get that endears me to them.

#9. We have a Slug Queen. If you don't believe me, you were not at the parade this morning. Better yet, we have a Congressman who appears in this parade every year directly behind the newly inaugurated Slug Queen so that he may pick up her Slug Poo... or maybe her slime? Regardless, this guy gets my vote.

#8. School buses are just plain more fun here than anywhere else I've ever seen.
#7. I suspect that The Department Of Peace, should it ever become a recognized entity at a national level, will be largely staffed by my neighbors. Power to the Peaceful. If you peaceniks are feeling disenfranchised elsewhere, I invite you here. We'll give you a flag and a space in next year's parade.
#6. EVERYONE here is really funny. Everyone.
#5. But, when it comes to important issues such as health care reform, we don't mess around. We are dead serious about it.

#4. Nearby woodland creatures occasionally bike into town to say hi.
#3.Being a fairly beatnik community, no one begrudges an artist her diligent attention to her craft.
#2. The golf courses are world renown. (As are my grip and form).
And the Number One Reason I Love It Here:
You can do this. In public.
I wrapped up today's love fest with our city with a little celebratory dance.


W: I totally think that curfew is unreasonable, Mom. I mean, seriously? Whatever.
J: I'm with her.

J: Hi. I'm cute.