BalletMet & Dancing With The Nutcracker

We had the most magical experience at the Ballet Met this weekend and it was perfectly timed since ballerinas have been on Charlie's mind non stop for the last couple months. Angelina Ballerina is on a constant Netflix rotation, the tutu is the daily attire, and I am judging pirouettes and pliés aplenty. How lucky to discover the annual Dancing With The Nutcracker event hosted by the BalletMet Columbus

This event was completely free with a donation to Faith Mission through the Discovery District Civic Association. First things first, we got our picture taken with the life size Nutcracker! From there we went into one of the studios that was set up with coloring, tattoos, an ornament craft, and a real ballerina costume to see up close! We spent about 30 minutes in here while we waited for the first session to end. Two times of noon and 1 p.m were offered and we chose the 1 p.m. 

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"A  real     tutu?!" 

"A real  tutu?!" 

Fun with coloring and crafts in the studio!

Fun with coloring and crafts in the studio!

Once it was our turn to enter the studio where the main event was being held, we scrambled to find a seat on the floor and wait for the excitement to begin. There is essentially no bad seat as the dancers move all over the floor. Ballet students were positioned all throughout the studio to help lead the children in the various dance routines that allowed them to actually participate in the Nutcracker story. The participation by the children is hands down the best part of this whole experience. The event is structured like a Nutcracker story time where the narrator takes the children through the story,  and teaches them the little participation dances before the professionals perform excerpts from the actual ballet. Afterwards we had some photo ops with the dancers and were able to retrieve our discounted Nutcracker tickets for the official performances in December. 

I can't get over how special this experience was and what an incredible sneak peek into a lovely Christmas tradition. Our whole family always has an amazing time with the Columbus Symphony Orchestra and their Popcorn Pops / Concert for Kids. I am delighted to have been able to introduce the children to another aspect of the fine arts and be able to experience it up close! With Charlie turning three next month, I can't wait to get her started in the Mini Mover's class that the company offers. Maybe she won't grow up to be a prima ballerina but you can't not furnish the delight a little girl has about ballet while it lasts. Not to mention it is an extraordinary gateway into the world of art, classical music, rhythm, and creativity. Dance adds something special to a child's personality and I am excited to see where this adventure takes us next. 

"The children have been a wonderful gift to me, and I'm thankful to have once again seen our world through their eyes."    - Jackie Kennedy

The National Museum of the United States Air Force

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On a day like to today, at the tail end of election week, I'm reminded that it's the every day people that matter most. No matter what political position you take, what race or gender, or where you live. People from all walks of life make huge sacrifices for the sake of their country. And they do this time and time again, no matter what the political climate. We need to value those who have served every day and find ways to serve those who have served us.

I am so happy that we made our way out to Dayton this past weekend to visit the National Museum of the United States Air Force. In retrospect it was aptly timed.  Watch your children's eyes widen as they view more than 360 aircraft and missiles that are on display. We chose to walk all the way back to the new fourth building and work are way up from there. The newest building consists of their Presidential Gallery where you can view and climb aboard most of the presidential aircrafts including the SAM 2000 which carried President Kennedy's body back to Washington after the assassination. 

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For children this is a place of wonder and excitement but I think adults really feel the full weight of the equipment involved in warfare. To see these majestic planes and all their armament up close was enlightening and the respect I already had for our veterans increased exponentially. You can roam through all the galleries for hours and still not have scratched the surface of everything this Museum has to offer. But you can visit time and time again because admission, parking, and wifi are all free! But instead of having to pay admission please consider donating or becoming a member to help support this facility so they can keep expanding and so that they can provide awesome educational opportunities for children. 

And now.... the pictures of course! Our family can't wait for our next visit.  

 

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Thank you to all the veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces! We greatly appreciate your service.