We arrived at Joe and Amy's right about bath time (just to clarify - bath time for the girls, not us, in case you were wondering). After Anna got out of the tub, she was instructed to dry off and go get her pj's on. This is what she came out in:
Yes, a practice tutu. She showed off some of her sweet moves in the kitchen. A little preview of sorts. Then, she broke out the jazz hands.
But ballet is not Anna's only skill. She's also quite the gymnast. In fact, she got a gymnastics ribbon earlier that day. In lieu of proper bars, any dad or uncle will suffice.
The next morning, Anna woke up a bit grouchy. (Perhaps that's putting it mildly. She was growling at everyone who came near her.) Maybe the stress of performing was getting to her? Anyway, Jason had a talk with her and told her that he was going to keep a bag of gummy bears in his pocket all day and if she was nice, he would periodically give her gummies. This seemed like a pretty good deal to her so she shaped up pretty quick.
She was back to herself in no time. And back to one of her favorite activities - using Jason as playground equipment. Though he will readily admit that he brings it on himself. He came up with this awesome game all on his own. Basically, scoop the nearest child into a blanket, swing them back a forth a couple of times to build up momentum, then throw them smack into the sofa. (A very soft sofa is
preferable required by law in most states.)
Of course, Katie needed a turn as well. Nevermind the fact that she's a good bit larger and about 10 pounds heavier than Anna... Jason needs to work on his strongs anyway.
And then... then it was the moment Anna had been waiting for. She finally got to get into her costume and get ready for the stage. Dead serious: have you ever seen anything so cute ever in all your born days? I didn't think so.
Getting some unsolicited advice from Katie, the old pro. "Take it from me kid. If I know one thing, it's recitals. This ain't my first rodeo. If you forget the moves, just smile and wave. Smile and wave."
It was difficult to get many good photos of her on stage but I think this pretty much captures it.
Remember Jason and Anna's gummy bear agreement from the morning? Wouldn't you know it, the second Anna came off the stage, she looked right at Jason and said "Two gummies?". And it was tragedy because Jason had changed clothes for the recital and left the gummies in his shorts pocket. The look on her face was priceless. Her mind couldn't comprehend that Jason didn't have the gummies.
At the end, when they brought all the dancers on stage to get their trophies, Anna stood there holding hers above her head like it was the Stanley Cup. I have never seen a child so excited to get a trophy.
Maybe it has something to do with the fact that Katie has a total of six trophies in her room on her special shelf and Anna has coveted one of her own for some time now. On the way back home, she kept holding it up and saying "Dis my trophy. Is very special for me. You like to see it? You can hold it but be very careful because is very special for me. I put it in my room."
There was no way Katie was letting Anna get all the glory of the weekend so she took me outside to show me her ballet moves. And to remind me several times that she had six trophies.
But the fun doesn't stop there. On the way home from Charlotte, Jason all the sudden says "How would you feel about stopping in Greensboro and staying at the O. Henry this evening?" Well, I think the answer to that would be a resounding "Hell-to-the-YES PLEASE!!" (Or, if you're not as crass as me, "I feel quite good about that suggestion.") And so we did.
This place is one of my favorite things about Greensboro, despite the fact that we really couldn't afford anything about it when we actually lived there. We were either poor college students or poor college grads. Even so...one year for my birthday, Jason booked a room and a table at the hotel's restaurant - Green Valley Grill - and we lived it up for the night. Thank the lord for credit cards and being young and stupid enough to have no guilt about credit card debt, right?
So it was nice to come back and stay without having to pay interest on it later. We partied like rock stars. That is, if rock stars consider it a party to order up blue crab dip and steaks and a bottle of red and a tarte tatin and a single dram of whiskey that cost nearly the same as our entire bottle of wine. Granted, this bottle of wine was a little bit cheaper than what we typically end up with because it was recommended by our waiter when we asked for a light red, but Jason's Macallan 18 year single malt habit may someday ruin us financially. Right after my Louis Vuitton habit probably...
One of the great things about the O. Henry is their southern breakfast. Eggs, bacon, grits, biscuits and gravy... My thighs are none too happy about it now but it was worth it for sure. After breakfast, we sat outside in the Orangery for a while and enjoyed our coffee.