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Gymnastics and competition

Monday, September 8, 2008
I don't think I've included anything about gymnastics since we started back this fall. For those who don't know, Bailey had enrolled in gymnastics in the winter and spring. I pulled her out for summer, since I know how busy we usually are swimming, boating, and traveling. When I called to enroll her for the fall session, I discovered that I could enroll Jake in the Parent & Tot class at the same time as Bailey's class. So... we began gymnastics on Monday nights at 6:30.

All I can say is it is very interesting to watch my little man among two- and three-year old children, attempting balance beams, trampolines, and cartwheels. He has a blast... it is indeed lots of fun to try and run away from mommy and have her rushing to keep him from getting kicked, hit, or trampled by an older child. He actually doesn't do bad, considering the age difference. He's still a little too immature to understand taking turns. He doesn't really "get" the concept of watching the teacher show us what we're supposed to do (he does, however, clap for her after each sequence). But, he knows exactly what to do when you throw him in the foam pit... he tries to swim his way around the foam blocks, laughing hysterically when he gets sucked in.

Bailey is also enjoying her gymnastics class, although I am not sure how much she is learning. I don't get to watch her as much, since I'm dealing with Jake the entire time. Every time I look at her, she's pulling at her underwear, biting her nails, or pulling on the teacher's arm, trying to get her to show her what to do next. She's so independent in most scenarios, but I think we have her so concerned about listening to the teacher that she won't really take the initiative to try any of it on her own. She has a good time though. She rang the bell after her bar exercises tonight (I think all of the kids in her class did), which is supposed to mean that she did something good. However, I did (on more than one occasion) hear her teacher trying to encourage her to actually do the exercises. She also only got one sticker and one of her classmates got three, so that was a big deal to her. lol... Competition is completely bred into this child.

Speaking of Bailey's competitiveness... we bought the board game, Candyland, this weekend. Brad and I sat down with her last night to play. She was so excited. Of course, that's when she was convinced she would win. When Brad won the game, despite his best attempts to draw bad cards, she was hysterical. She cried and screamed, totally shocked that someone other than her could win. She clutched the "winning card" to her chest and yelled to Brad that it was supposed to be her card! While we were somewhat frustrated with her response to a game that was supposed to be fun, I couldn't help but understand how she felt (through our laughter - totally hidden from Bailey). I was having (yet again) flashbacks of a time when my mom and I sat and played a board game (something to do with a talk show host). When I was unable to win the game, I cried, quit playing, and stormed off to my room. It was a terrible feeling to realize that I was not the best at everything! :)