And the Winner Is...Winona Lou Grossman!!!!!
Ok, it was just a coloring contest. Not even a free-hand art contest, but a "fill in the pre-determined lines on the page" contest. Not really the stuff that parents dare gush about. The stuff that, frankly, I would gape in concerned wonder if any parents I knew gushed about... so I do so here trusting that this is read by grandmas and aunts almost exclusively, and hope the rest of you will still be my friend after this post. Your kids are cute and smart and creative, too. Really.
Because I am oddly thrilled by this news. Context: It was field trip day at Y Camp. Her group headed to the Rodeo--without Winnie due to a slight tummy issue and a larger "parents don't approve of rodeos" issue. But, they had colored in some bucking broncos and horse pictures ahead of time to take with them for the Coloring Contest. Winona's counselor turned in her campers' pictures and at the end of day, in front of HUNDREDS of kids, mind you, the announcer congratulates "Winona from the Y"--- who was not there, but whose counselor went down to receive the prize--a TIARA!--in her honor.
Now, I played it cool upon hearing the news; was actually only mildly amused by the whole thing when Counselor Dawn handed me the tiara. But as the day went on, I got to thinking about winning... and how good it feels. We love to say "Everybody Plays! Everyone Wins!" at the Y--which I think sets the stage for important lessons and values-- but that doesn't stop MOST people at those games from silently keeping score, and quietly congratulating the winners on the way out of the gym, 'cause let's face it: it feels GREAT! And I was so excited for Winona to feel GREAT about this.
And she does. She is really proud and said, "Mom, I was at that coloring table longer than anyone else" and later, "Mom, have you seen my good crayons? The ones we hide from Jezzie? I think I want to use those for my art tonight" and at bedtime, "I can't believe I won a tiara!" The especially nice thing about this win is that none of the other kids are thinking "I didn't win the coloring contest"-- at least I would highly doubt it. It matters to one kid only. One kid and her parents, that is. (I'd post the picture, but it's being shipped to MOMA. Actually, I just never saw it).
I promise you that the accolades and prizes of Winona's future will not be in direct proportion to the precedent I've hereby set for the Coloring Contest Tiara. Really. I promise.