Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Ballet Up to the Barre 3

Here goes week 3...
Oh Abby. Abby Abby Abby.
I'm curious about a lot from this episode but the number 1 question in my mind is who is telling Abby that this much crazy sells? A little crazy is good TV. A little extra crazy getes the buzz going and attracts viewers. This particular  brand of crazy turns people off.
There's been an evolution in Abby's nutiness since season 1. In season 1, she was tough. Insulting, but not horrific. She was not nice to the kids but it wasn't anything anyone hasn't seen before. We all know a coach or teacher who talks down to kids, insults them and just isn't a nice person.
That was the beauty of season 1. The GIRLS and the MOMS were spotlighted in good ways, we saw their normal lives and the dances were great!
Season 2, Abby got crazier and crazier as it went on but still, not unbearable. I'm sure she was amping it up because she's loving the idea of being the meanest, most notorious, infamous dance teacher ever. Great, Ab. If that's what you want your claim to fame to be, hey more power to you.
SEASON THREE however, is Abby's giant ego trip. She disgusts me.I fast forwarded parts last night when she was laying in to Chloe. I just couldn't deal with it.
Abby. Reality check. Dance Moms is as big as it is becuase of the girls. They are the rare combination of innocence, talent, maturity yet immaturity in a good way, good chemistry and the "it factor." The  moms bring enough drama. Stop creating siutations to make it so "extreme" all the time.
Oops. Soap box again this week.
Geez. I had really planned to do recaps of this season but I get SO ANGRY watching that I miss a lot of the things I would typically talk about...
Let's talk about the pyramid.
I don't hate the straight line with one girl on top. I think it's fine, actually. Everyone is even with one girl being featured. What's wrong with that? Abby acted like it was horrid, but I think it's better than the pyramid. It's a lot less divisive and puts almost everyone on equal ground. That just seems fair.
I also didn't have a problem with Sophia being on the top. She was the only one there last week so sure, naturally she should be up there in this situation. I still don't like it that she is there, even though she's amazing. It's comes off way too concocted. Yuck.
Solos...Sophia and Chloe's solos are featured.
Sidebar...I firmly believe (because a little Dance Mom bird told me...) that many of the girls do solos more often than shown on the show. These are safety net solos in case the main storylines they are going for don't pan out.
Sophia's solo was beautiful...and filled with turns. 1000000 turns. That girl turns like a top but. There has to be more to dance than turns. It can't all just be turn turn turn turn leap run run run kick turn turn. Let's see her tell a story the way Chloe or Maddie does.
Chloe's solo was beautiful! I think they editted it in a way that showed off the worst of her bobbles. Every dancer bobbles here or there but this was definitely done to show each of Chlo's little mistakes. Ho hum.
Chloe, you are gorgeous. What that judge said about you is SO TRUE. You are a humble, genuine dancer. Don't you ever  lose that quality or I will drive down to Pgh and pluck you straight out of the ALDC and bring you back to Studio K. ;) Your heart shows when you dance and honey, that's so much more important than any trophy or plaque.
It literally broke my heart when Chloe wa thankful that she got third instead of second. She didn't want Abby in her face about being the first loser. Oh Chloe. You are not a loser.
Also...did Sophia bring her own costumes or are they doubling the budget for her's? Because they are stunning but NOT typical DM solo costumes...they are way too ornate. Yet another manufactured situation...ugh.
The group dance was...interesting.
The red carpet idea was so cute but it's straight up unfair to the girls to never practice with the prop. Get a clue, producers. These are KIDS with careers ahead of them. Stop making them look bad!
It was interesting how it was editted to make it seem like Kelly wanted Mackenzie out of the group. According to twitter, Kelly told Abby to take Brooke out and Melissa told Abby to take Mackenzie out...
Fascinating stuff, isn't it?
Moral of this week's episode?
Don't believe everything you see, for it was probably editted that way.
P.S. are a wonderful mom. You are doing what you think is best. Chloe clearly knows how loved she is. The show gives her exposure. Your meet and greets teach her poise, people skills, graciousness and public speaking. Keep doing what you are doing. xoxo

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Things I Think My Toddler Is Thinking

Yesterday, a hilarious blog post came up on my FB newsfeed: 46 Reasons My 3 Year Old Might Be Freaking Out by Jason Good. (see it here!) I almost peed my pants was spot on about Trace. He freaks over nothing...Jason Good has some really great and funny posts on his blog. I wasted a good 45 minutes reading more this morning. He puts in to words exactly how I feel about my toddler. In addition to 46 Reasons, I also recommend 3 Minutes in my Toddler's Head. Moms and Dads, prepare for a laugh. :)

Inspire by Jason Good's take on his toddlers actions, I thought today I'd put down in a post some things I think must go through my children's mind:

Rory slipped on the ice this morning. Her solution to the small scrape?
"I need to call Daddy. He needs to put cream on it and rub it and wrap it in my blankey. You can't do it Mommy, only Daddy."
I translate this to: If I ask for Daddy, Mommy will call him and he will bring me some sort of candy or treat after work and then he'll baby my hand and give me a thousand kisses and 110 bandaids, even one for my baby doll and he'll let me snuggle on the couch and watch tv all night. Mommy will tell me to stop crying...DADDDDDDDDY!"

Trace, while waiting for Rory to come out of preschool today, was sobbing hysterically for no reason, on top volume, for 15 minutes:
If I cry long enough, she'll get out the M&Ms, I know it...keep it up...deep breath...waaaaaaaah...stop for 2 seconds, let her think your goes...waaaaaaah! Come on Mom...get out those M&Ms wait what? You don't have any candy? Screw you woman. WAAAAAAHHHH! At least give me your phone, I can do serious damage on that sucker.

Trace, while sobbing in the midde of the night for no reason (do you sense a theme here?)...
I hear: MOM. MOM. MOM. MOM.
What he's really saying:
 I know you hear me, Woman. Get your butt out of bed and check on me...I could be bleeding out my eyeballs and you would never know. I could be battling the closet monster. I could just be a little chilly or my blankets are wrong or I left my Jake doll in the living room or my light up pillow stopped working or my CD isn't playing or my hair is itchy or I'm faking sick to get M&Ms for taking Tylenol or I just miss your face (that's not it, by the way) or I want to see how loud I have to scream to wake up Rory or I want to play Russian Roulette with whether or not you will be cranky or normal when you come in...oh crap. You sent Dad.

Rory doesn't nap anymore but she does go in her room for quiet time every day. During quiet time, she gets EVERY toy she owns out and throws it all over her room. (In all honesty, she does get a lot of toys out and make a huge mess but it's an honest mess. She really is playing, not just being messy :))
La La LA LA LA LAAA LAAAA LAAAAA LAAAAAAAAA I love to sing I love music I love flowers I love sugar is that a butterfly no a seagull no an elephant an elephant lives in the zoo zoos have animals I should get out all my stuffed animals (pick pick pick) Got a bunch (throw in the air) That was awesome. Let's try it with tea cups...oh dear that one broke...LA LA LA LAAAAAAAAAAAA I love my grandma la la la la Grandma gives me Jell-o ho hum he hum let's smash something...

Ever wonder what goes through your kid's mind? Let me know!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Ballet Up to the Barre 2

Time for some serious crazy...oh Abby...

Does anyone else watch Buheads? (Mondays, ABCFamily It's fantastic. It's written by Amy Sherman-Paladino, aka the creator of Gilmore Girls! It's basically GG 2.0, even a lot of the same actors. Good stuff.) Well this week, Fanny referenced Abby like this:
"If they (the parents) don't like it, they can take their daughter to the enormous woman with the ridiculous pyramid who's students have knock knees and post traumatic stress."
Best one line summary of Abby EVER! ;)
This week's episode was...not my favorite.
I don't subscribe to the idea that reality tv is  "real," of course. If you do, well I've got some ocean front property in Arizona to sell you. I understand that situations are manufactured by producers. The reactions of the moms are real, but certainly the storylines are guided and nudged by the producers.
This whole Abby replaces the entire team thing? Gimme a break.
Some reasons I didn't like this episode:
1. There's no way in heck that Sophia Lucia could just drop everything that kid has going on and fly to Pittsburgh. She's super busy and constantly working. Her arrival and departure date from the ALDC had to be set up in advance. Give me a break. I love Sophia, I think she's amazing. I have watched her since that first time she was on Ellen, doing pirouettes. That kind of kid doesn't just show up at the ALDC. Her agent set it up.
Which is fine. I love to watch her dance, so I liked it a lot but...stop trying to make it seem like Abby just called an old pal. There had to be a better way to incorporate that storyline.
2. I didn't like Yvette on Abby's Ultimate Dance Comp and I don't like her cameo on ALDC. Is this a theme this season? Running in to Abby's Ultimate kids all over the place? Because I'm pretty sure a little Twitter bird told me Zach from Abby's Ultimate works with Candy Apples for a while and runs in to ALDC at competition...
I hope the producers realize people are gullible but they aren't totally stupid...people will get bored with over-reaching story lines. Don't jump the shark, Lifetime.
3. It really really annoyed me that these new dancers were okay coming in on a Wednesday and competiting on Saturday and letting Abby take all the credit. First of all, for Sophia Lucia to call herself an ALDC dancer is assinine. That child is impecably trained and that didn't come from 2 days with Abby. Give me a break. If I was her teachers in LA, I'd b a little miffed...give credit where credit is due. Say she is performing with or a special guest of...This probably only annoyed me because as a dance teacher, I've had this happen. It's obnoxious. Teaching dance is crazy hard and well ugh. I'll get off this soapbox before I begin preaching.
4. The new moms...hmmm...manufactured crazy. Sorry, they are way too nice to try and be cray-cray like my fave Kelly. ;)
I'm not going to review the solos or group. I didn't really care. Of course, Sophia's solo was perfection. The group was blah. Yvette's group was cute but...whatever. Ugh.
To sum it up? I'm  disappointed in this episode. I thought the original girls were cute in their performance. It was nice to see them happy while dancing for once.
Lifetime, pull it back. Get back to closer to what the original season was: more dancing and "natural" situations. That's what people like.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Almost there...

Source: via Tessa on Pinterest

(via pinterest. source sited on graphic)

It's a crazy busy Monday here. Physical therapy, grocery shopping, work, first day of my cleaning challenge...pushing through because it means I'm one day closer to some relaxation and warm temps!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Oh's your birthday!

It's my birthday! Woohoo! I'm officially 28. I don't get too hung up on age, it doesn't really phase me. I'm happy to be older. 20-26 was straight up INSANE. I started a business, met Dave, got engaged, bought a house, got married, had 2 kids...yikes. Being older is very appealing. It means I'm getting the hang of this crazy life, inevitably. :) honor of my birthday, I thought I'd let you know a little bit more about me! I'm sponsoring Neely this month (shout out! She's my fave, for real. She was the first blog friend turned real life friend! I'm so glad I blog. I actually have girlfriends know who you are. ;) AAAAND one who lives in Pittsburgh  (Heeey Cari!) and we're going to meet up soon. (meet you at the outlets?!  :))

Whoa baby. I'm typing this while drinking a Hurricane. Excuse the rambles. :)

So who is this Miss Kate?

Well let me show you...

This is me! My name is Kate.

I'm married to DAVE! Aka Gravey. He's my best friend. I love his green eyes, crazy curly hair and the way he makes our kids laugh. He's the best.
I am Mama to two kiddos...

Rory is 3.5

Trace is 2
They are 17 months apart. And no, I wouldn't necessarily recommend doing it like that...unless you want to lose your mind for a year straight.
I live the forest! We have about 3 feet of snow now, though.

I'm a dance teacher. I teach kids to do crazy things like...

I'm a huge fan of a lot of things...but mainly Gilmore Girls (my daughter is named Rory...), DANCE MOMS and Disney.
Oh yeah, that's me and Brooke Hyland. She, Paige and Kelly spent the day at my studio. :)
That's me in a nutshell...I also have depression and anxiety. I'm an open book about it, so if you have any issues or questions...ask me! I'll help you find the best help for you!
Want to connect?
Find me here!
Twitter: @567k8
Instagram: 567kate

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Ballet Up to the Barre 1

Hi, my name is Kate and I'm a Dance Mom-aholic. It's a serious issue. I can't get enough of Abby's particular brand of crazy. Being a dancer and dance teacher myself only fuels my obsession. I decided to combine my love of DM and blogging.

Each week during Season 3, I'm going to bring you my take on each episode: Ballet Up to the Barre. (get it? hehe)  My view on each episode will include a recap, my own pyramid, quote of the week, my favorite dances and of course a sprinkling of my snarky attitude. ;)

First can I say how BRILLIANT I thought the Maniac promo was this season? I myself am somewhat of a steel town girl and love love love Flashdance. Brilliance. I think everyone in my part of PA stood up and cheered the first time. Gotta love it.
First off all, I'm not going to talk too awful much about the train wreck that was "Smoke Before the Fire" interview show. I think Abby succeeded in makin herself look incrediby arrogant and the Holly came off just as Abby described her: professional, lady like and well spoken. Even complaining or questioning is done in a respectful manner.
Jill showed once again that she is doing everything possible to get Kendall ahead...ugh.
Is Abby seriously shocked Melissa's loyalties lie with the other moms now and not her friendship with Abby? COME ON. They all spend more time together than a full time job each week and a good chunk of the summer Abby wasn't around. Who cares? As long as Maddie and Mackenzie are still working hard it doesn't matter whom the mom prefers. Please Abby.
 Christi...oh boy. I have no words.
Kelly broke my heart tearing up about Paige. I have a giant soft spot for the Hyland family after hosting them at the studio. I can assure you from personal experience that regardless of what Abby says, they are wonderful, sweet, talented girls and Kelly is a fun, upbeat and supportive mom. Brooke does a pretty good job at brushing Abby off but my little Paige...she's a sensitive kid.
Overall, I thought the smoke before the fire was weird and only managed to look like more staged drama. I think the producers better be careful...people are starting to catch on to staged situations!  I really believe the moms and kids reactions are real and genuine, but the situations are sometimes a little too "perfect stormy" to be it Lifetime. People see through that!
On to the actual episode...
Brooke and Paige are apparently not coming back. Good try, Lifetime. Anyone with a Twitter or Instagram (or with a good eye during the random ALDC Class shots where Paige is clearly in the front row) knows they come back. The question is when I guess?! I give it 3 episodes MAX.
Abby decided no pyramid! YAY! I hate that freaking pyramid. There's always a heirarchy in dance studios. Some kids excel at acro, some at tap, etc. That naturally gives a heirarchy in each class. But to put it visibly in front of kids is just dumb. Talk about manifesting drama. I have a hard time believing Abby does this in her other classes...ahem.
No solos except Kendall? We'll see how long that lasts...
Open auditions are here again! I'm so taking 3 of my students next year just for fun. I think it's bananas that Abby holds auditions like this. She's nuts.
The new girl is ALLY! She's very pretty in her dance clothes. Excellent long legs and pretty feet. I think she looks too old though...she might only be 1 or 2 years older than Chloe (1.5 if memory serves me...) but she looks a lot older. Her mom, Shelley, seems normal. But we all know no one is normal at the ALDC for long. They are from New Orleans so uhh...yeah that's not going to last long. I give Ally this week and then I bet she's gone next week.
Group Dance:
Angel and Demons. It was rotten of Abby to teach Chloe the special part then give it to the new girl. Rotten. It makes for good tv and good reaction from the moms but Chloe is just a kid. Give her a break. Rotten rotten rotten. Overall, I thought the dance was really neat! Music was pretty, costumes were gorgeous and the choreography was different. Very neat! Looks like a good group dance season.
I'm glad Abby finally came clean about them learning a few dances and a handful of solos over the break. I understand that they do learn a good chunk of each dance in 3 days or less (straight out of Kelly's mouth: sometimes they only have an HOUR and have to rehearse in a hotel room!) But they clearly learn chunks (phrases) of choreography that appear, slightly tweaked, in multiple dances a season. They have to! They are just kids.
Mackenzie's solo was weak. Abby needs to give this tiny little girl a break. The music was dumb, costume wasn't cute and she looked exhausted. If I was Abby, I'd be worried about her. She looks burned out and it makes me sad!
Maddie's solo was very nice. Costume was beautiful, but it was another day, another lyrical. Start on the floor, extend the leg behind her head, arm movement, arm movement, straddle roll,'s like a formula they just plug in. Maddie is capable of SO MUCH MORE and she doesn't get to show it because she's so rushed each week. I hope in the breaks when Maddie competes with the normal ALDC that she has a solo that shows her off better...
Chloe's solo was pretty. I love to watch her because I'm jealous of her long legs. (sigh) I want to see these girls do more than LYRICAL.
Kendall's solo...was sluggish. Jill was right, it was good, not great.
I wish the new girl would have done a solo! I'd leave to see what she is really capable of!
On to Weekly Wins:
Fave Dance of the Week: Angel and Demons.
Least Fave: Kenzie's solo...poor girl.
Top of my Pyramid: Nia! She was serving it in the group. Werk.
Quote of the week: "Their Meet and Greets are like a for a ticket, take a picture of a bear, move on." -Abby