Saturday, January 09, 2010

1/9/2010 Triple Flip

Gymnastics Day!

With working-parent guilt in full swing (even though I'm still technically unemployed), I found a way to give all three kids an activity, without running around like crazy and without taking over our weekends. Gymnastics classes for all 3, same time, same place! A relatively convenient Saturday at 9am, though the boys are in a different building than Katrina. Still, this is nothing short of a miracle.

I had some guilt anyway though -- Gabriel isn't a toddler anymore who just needs "something" to do on Saturday mornings. Things to do just for fun are fine of course, but he's plenty old enough for his extracurricular activities to be building skills he'll have for a long time. If he wants. You know me, this isn't about having something to put on a college application, but if he does want to, say, get good at soccer, shouldn't he be in soccer?

I think it's unlikely any of them will get serious about gymnastics (and as a former very poor gymnast myself I have little enthusiasm for it) (though I did have a great time showing them how to do a cartwheel and seeing if I could still walk on my hands), but let's give it a try. And at least today, things that are just for fun are pretty darned fun. The boys are old enough that boys' gymnastics really means boys' gymnastics: just a boys' class, and on equipment that only men's gymnastics uses. I'd be amazed if their enthusiasm sticks when they have to try the pommel horse, but for today, they had a great time.

First, Katrina's class. Still just for fun, mixture of boys and girls. Katrina, as usual, was reticent about the warmup, and mostly stood and stared.

I left her for a few minutes to check on the boys, and when I returned, I found that she'd completely relaxed and was now happily participating.

This isn't a parent-participation class, and they have two coaches. Only 3 kids are signed up for the class, and only two including Katrina even showed up, so each kid will get a lot of individual attention!

The boys, meantime, were having a blast. Far more than I expected, actually. Julian couldn't quit giggling on the spring board exercises.

(The room they're in has awful lighting so it was impossible to get good photos.) I was really happy to see the coach making them do some conditioning exercises afterwards. Get down and give me 20!

In case you hadn't noticed, I did make a point of dressing them similarly today. Yes, I am a complete dork, but it sure makes it easy to keep track of them. And who am I to miss out on a photo-op? They weren't exactly cooperative though, this was the best I could do.

Afterward, it was my turn to exercise. Off to the Y we went. I probably shouldn't have let them play on this trellis outside the Y afterward, but once again, who am I to deny my art. Even if they do.

Dave was at work all day again, so I had a plan. I got the movie Up from Redbox ($1 at Safeway), and told them they could watch it if they put ALL the toys away. Four rooms, including their two bedrooms, had been completely taken over by toys. It took them a long time, but they did it. And we watched Up, which I liked a lot.

After the movie, to my amazement, I found my studious sons brushing up on their language arts. They actually started fighting over the books.

We had fun practicing pronouncing and learning words, reinforcing the cliche "you only have to know one more thing than the next guy to be the expert." Because that's about where I am with Spanish, barely one step ahead of them. Still, I do know enough to introduce to them the concept that all objects have a gender, and that "a" is "un" or "una" depending on the gender. They both seem to really want to learn Spanish. Moi aussi ...oops, I mean, mi tambien.

But no Spanish classes on Saturday mornings for the next two months -- that's gymnastics time.


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