Ballet – doing what’s right for her, not what’s ‘right’
Dec17

Ballet – doing what’s right for her, not what’s ‘right’

For nearly two years now, my daughter has been attending three ballet classes a week. She has been simultaneously working on her Grade 4, her Grade 5 and her Intermediate Foundation syllabuses. (Intermediate Foundation is the first professional exam, so a dancer can go on to teach, it runs alongside the Grade 5.) That is a lot for a little girl to deal with, but she has thrived on it and has very rarely got confused between the...

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December without panto
Dec13

December without panto

So here we are. December. Almost certainly the most stressful month of the year. And for the first time since 2014, it is a December (almost) without panto. I don’t like winter and I don’t like December. For me (and of course for my daughter), panto was a shining light that brightened up winter. It was literally the only thing I liked about winter. So how is December without panto? It’s a bit weird, to be honest. I...

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Parkrun first lady – a dream come true
Dec11

Parkrun first lady – a dream come true

Ever since I finished as third woman at parkrun over two years ago (I’ve done it several times), it has been my dream to be the first lady across the line. Or even the second. Our parkrun is big, so it was never going to happen at ours. Maybe if the planets aligned and I had a really, really good day and there weren’t many other women there, I might just have made second. But never first. So I knew I would have to do it...

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The X Factor Final – a weekend away with my daughter
Dec10

The X Factor Final – a weekend away with my daughter

I’ve never had a weekend away on my own with just one of the kids. I know a lot of mums do. But I’m a bit of a nervous traveller. Earlier this year, I started to get braver and get out more, particularly with my daughter. One place we went was to the recording of The Greatest Dancer, a new TV talent show, which my daughter loved (of course). As part of the deal, we were given priority tickets to The X Factor final at SSE...

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Christmas stress
Dec06

Christmas stress

It happens every year. One minute Christmas is ‘ages’ away, the next it’s crept up on me and suddenly it’s a few weeks away and I’m nowhere near ready. I’ve seen stuff on social media that you shouldn’t let Christmas affect your mental health. Of course you shouldn’t, but it’s also really hard to cut down on Christmas. I don’t have anxiety or depression, but I am one of...

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Ballet exam do’s and don’ts
Dec03

Ballet exam do’s and don’ts

My daughter has done five ballet exams over the years – Primary and Grades 1 to 4. She has also done her Grade 1 tap, Grade 2 modern and Bronze jazz. So we’re getting quite good at these exams! I thought it might be useful to share some tips that we’ve picked up along the way, for families who are new to ballet. My daughter does the RAD exams, but I’m sure these do’s and don’ts would work just as...

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