Last week we took the big girls to see their first live performance of The Nutcracker. (In fact, it was their first live performance of anything--they've never been to a play or a musical or a ballet or anything else in a theater; they've only been to one movie, and that was out of sheer desperation. But that is another story.)
Anyway, the kids loved it, especially Jillson. She spent almost the whole ballet on my lap, so we could whisper about what was going on. We had reviewed the Nutcracker story before we went, which helped make sense of the scenes that were unfolding, but it's a great ballet for kids. Not a lot of guessing required.
Since then, we have been listening to LOTS of Nutcracker music. Maddie asks for it in the car every single time. I've been using a Pandora station, so we're mixing in other classical seasonal music (Vivaldi's Seasons, for example, also some Bach). I'm loving that kids in general (and my kids in particular) still like classical music. It's a good reminder for me to play it more often. Sometimes Maddie and Jillson tell me the scenes they're imagining while listening. Madelyn is also learning to distinguish between what she calls "church music" (i.e. choral music) and what she calls "nutcracker music" (i.e. symphonic). When a piece of music starts she calls out "This is definnerly, definnerly a church song." I love this.
Anyway, I hope we'll have the chance to do this again--would love this to be a family tradition. Also, on a final note, I totally love that my husband came along. (Yes, he was given a choice.) We went with a group of five other families, and only one other husband came along for the ride. So special for me and the girls to share this with him.