thursday, august 27

last thursday was probably one of the most fulfilling days that i have had with adali in her short 17 months so far.  it was her very first gymnastics class.  i have to be honest, i was incredibly excited and even a teensy bit nervous.  i was nervous fearing that it might be too early to be introducing this to her.  i didn't want her to be overwhelmed with what was going on.  but at the same time i was excited to be able to share this experience with her.  i thought about this day every week we were forced to stay in the house during rsv season trying to avoid all things germ related.  it was a goal to look forward to, something to get me through the feeling of confinement i suppose.  

i grew up a gymnast and taught classes to "pre-schoolers" through middle school aged kids during a few summers in college so i knew what to expect of the class. i knew she would be one of the youngest if not the youngest in the class considering that the starting age is 18 months and figured most of the other kids would be ahead of her developmentally.  i didn't want her to get discouraged by this so i had started to teach adali a few things at home like forward rolls, jumping over a rope and walking on a line in hopes that this would help her ease into the class.

i found a little leotard small enough to fit her at a resale shop and just used one of her skirts we already had as a little dance skirt.  she was so proud to put it on last week and kept posing for the camera.

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when we first arrived she was hanging pretty close to me.  she was checking the other kids out and looking around at all of the equipment.  the instructors did a great job of explaining that the purpose of the class is not to teach them anything specific about gymnastics, rather to help them build a better relationship with you and to allow them to discover things they never have before.  if they don't want to do something, don't make them and if they don't do something "right," don't punish them.  once the music started and the games began adali was allll smiles.  she caught on so quickly and jumped right in with the others.  she listened to the instructors so well and didn't need me to be right by her side at all.  

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she climbed, she rolled, she flipped, she jumped and best of all, she smiled!

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what she liked the most; crawling through the tunnels, doing forward rolls, jumping on the trampoline (she is still trying to figure out how to jump with both feet)…

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and walking on the balance beam with her coach miss sparky…

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(please forgive the blurriness of the pictures in the gym.  the lighting is not the best for my little digital camera.) 

today she got a little bossy when she wanted to go down the slide 76 times in a row and i wouldn't let her climb up the slide the wrong way, but overall she listens very well and never wants to leave once she gets her stamps and we say goodbye.

i cannot explain the feeling i had when we left the gym last week…i found myself tearing up on the way home.  all i can say is that it was incredibly fulfilling.  

oh, and the best part for mommy, she takes a heck of a nap when we get home.

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much love,

mama a

ps….don't forget to head over to toocutbowsbynikki and get your comment in by noon ET tomorrow for a chance to win this cute bow.  

6 Comments ( Reply )

  1. Mandy says:

    Too cute, Jamie! Do you go to The Little Gym?

  2. Chrystal says:

    Jamie! She looks so grown up in these pictures! I’m glad to see it’s normal to sleep with multiple pacifiers!

  3. Jennifer says:

    Jamie – my oh my how big she has gotten.

  4. could she be any cuter?? especially that little sleeping gymnast one :)

  5. sweeney says:

    how great! and isn’t it totally fulfilling! that’s exactly how i felt when addi started dance class. however, now she’s breaking my heart and doesn’t want to do dance class..she wants to do soccer and GYMNASTIC! (pretty sure my sister put that into her head. danielle was a competitive gymnast for 12years). all well. i’m sure she’ll come back to dance…at least i hope so.

    xoxo
    me

    p.s. adali, you look pretty darn cute on that balance beam :)

  6. Jamie says:

    Mandy,

    I know this is really late but I wanted to get back to you nonetheless. We don’t have a little gym near us (sigh), so I found an actual gymnastics facility near us that starts classes at 18 months. I fell very fortunate because the gym is awesome and has it’s own facility for young kids that are purely there for social and developmental reasons. Today was our third class and Adali LOVES every minute of it.

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