At the end of February, Anna participated in her ballet studio's International Dance Acclaim. It is a competition of sorts, not necessarily against other dancers but for one to compete against themselves. Each class is taught the same short routines and then if the dancer chooses to do it, she is judged based on her own performance. For Anna, her age had two group dances (which consisted of one other dancer from her class) and then one solo dance. Each piece was maximum of one minute. I was able to go into class at one point and record her doing each piece so that she could practice at home. Needless to say, she was very nervous to do this and so we practiced each evening for about a week before the big day. The boys even participated in preparing her, although they didn't attend. (Brice had baseball and I didn't feel like keeping up with Kyle during nap time). Justin and I were able to just enjoy watching our girl without distractions.
She was very, very nervous when I dropped her off in the adjoining studio where all the girls were warming up and getting ready. One of the sweet moms who was helping out took her under her wing though and talked to her until some other girls her age arrived. Her age group is the youngest group who is eligible to participate so they were first! Yikes. And, then, she was the first one to do her solo and I will say all her practicing and preparing really paid off! She did so, so well and we were really just so proud that she followed through with this experience. The judge was only sitting about ten feet from where the girls were dancing, as well as the parents because it is held in the dance studio, not an auditorium. She was quite proud of herself and couldn't believe she finally had a medal! She sees the boys receive trophies season after season and was feeling a bit left out. She even wore her medal to class the next week. :)