Friday, December 9, 2011

Christmas Season and Christmas Programs

The Season of Christmas has begun.
It began about 3 weeks ago at our house with the first of 3 Christmas Programs of our kids that we attended this year.
Every year for the last 15 or so years the 2nd grade music teacher has led 300+ kids in a delightfully cute, funny, tear-inducing (for the those proud parents), crazy program at the local University.
I remember watching as a college student and loving those cute little nose picking, crotch-shrugging, loud-sing, laughing (some pouting), wiggly little 2nd graders sing their sweet little hearts out to an adoring college crowd. We college students love it. It made us long for home and little kids, and family and all things not dorm-life-or cafeteria food-like. It made me remember that sweet childhood that was so long ago and yet just yesterday.
Then last year Precious Jewel hit 2nd grade and she was one of those cute little kids singing her sweet and nervous little heart out to the college crowd.

This year, it was Mr. Smiles turn.

He had been chosen for a quartet singing Silent Night and was ecstatic. Precious Jewel had the same part last year and he was excited to follow in her footsteps.

Have you ever seen 300 little 2nd graders all crammed onto one stage?

CRAZY and so dang cute!

His music teacher is BRAVE!

They all sang for the 10:30am Chapel Service and then we went again that night to watch them all sing again for the families.

Nater Mater was NOT duly impressed. He found it much more entertaining to crawl under the pews and grab the unsuspecting victims ankles in front of him much to my horror and embarrassment.

Mr. Smiles has a sweet bell-like voice that rang out when singing Silent Night and he took his part very seriously.

So seriously, that before the morning's performance when they had all the kids practicing BEFORE chapel and no one was there, he nearly dissolved into tears.

When Luke was able to catch him on his way to a bathroom break before all the college students started flooding the chapel, he asked him why he had such a long face and was refusing to smile when his music teacher kept asking them all to smile.

He, near tears and angry, replied that everyone had missed it all and he'd sung to a bunch of empty seats. They'd been working for months and no one saw him!!

We assured him that what he's just done was dress rehearsal and that the REAL program would start in just a matter of minutes.

Shining eyes and smile returned!!

Some of us didn't make it all the way through two performances that day.

Two weeks later: We had our little church program that a mom helps direct every year.

Every year, there are more and more kids and I have to say toddlers are stinkin' adorable.

The 3 tots in front happily sang along and performed all the hand actions during practice that morning before people arrived. Later, not so much.

Mr. Smiles and his little friend, who is also in 2nd grade, sang their Silent Night solo in front of the whole church...giggles and all.

I had to say that I got choked up. Good Lookin' happily participated this year.

He Happily Participated for the first time at the age of 5 1/2. Every year before that has usually been preceded by a Fit. Refusal. Tears. Stomping of Feet and general holiday angst. No cute singing and I've learned it's best not to push the issue and he sits on the front row with me while I've helped encourage the others.

This year though, he wanted to be by the side of his sweet little friend whom he has declared he will marry when he grows up. Sigh a happy mother's heart...not because he performed, but because he was so cute and I finally got a picture.

"Rock baby Jesus SWEETLY" they were all instructed. Hehe

Now during the actual performance for the parents, Nater Mater and his little friend thought it would be more fun to entertain the crowd than perform for them. Jumping on and off and eventually log-style rolling down the steps was much more fun than rocking baby Jesus softly. Ahhh, once again, boys have a way of keeping a prideful mother humble.

That night: Christmas Program Number 3

Precious Jewel has joined a Children's Choir this fall instead of another year of AWANA.

The girl likes to sing and we thought it best to get stuck in her mind some of these powerfully-packed and Message-filled songs instead of Lady Gaga or Miley Cyres that she often hears via friends. Many of the songs are filled with Scripture and while there is nothing wrong with many many secular songs, at this stage in her life we want to help fill her mind with ones that will speak to her heart. We're in a heart battle with her right now and she may not realize it, but these catchy tunes she has practiced week in and week out are far more fruit-producing and heart-softening than any talk we could have with her about music, books or movies that her friends and her giggle about.
She also was chosen for a solo for a beautiful song I'd never heard before.

And once again, another program attendee has bit the sleepy dust.

Merry Christmas everyone!!

1 comment:

Wendy Thibault Kane said...

How cute! And I'm so sorry for Mr. Smiles who thought he'd sung to no one! Poor thing! I had to make it to one of my daughter's plays the other day at school and was hoping I didn't have the time wrong and had missed it. Thankfully, I hadn't. So I kind of know how he feels. :) I love reading your blog.