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It was a cold morning the Sunday before Thanksgiving and it was the one day of the season that the All Stars were scheduled to appear on the plaza before the game. It was also the day after our first snowfall. After getting myself mostly ready (my A-team was also scheduled to perform on the plaza) and then finding out that due to the cold the old ladies were staying home. At least the rest of my team stayed home where it was warm. I still had to go out with Anna. I put on some warmer clothes and grabbed a blanket then headed downtown. And it was cold!

The MVC All Star Purple team on the plaza. (Anna’s in the middle.)

Kicks were kept down a bit so as not to get injured in the cold.

Poms in the slush on purpose…really.

Dancing up a storm.

I think the move after this the slush went flying from their shoes into the crowd. The little girls in front of me loved that.

Still smiling despite the cold.

Anna and a friend.

Another friend and old teammate was a pleasant surprise to see.

Do we look cold?

Here is the team performing:

Last week parents were invited to sit in at dance class. Ellie’s was on Monday. They demonstrated how they stretch at the barre and on the floor. They showed all 5 ballet feet and arm positions and did a number of across the floor exercises. It was also the class where their recital costume is revealed and orders placed. Ellie’s class will be wearing a cute dress that has a white fitted bodice with embroidered flowers and a long, flowing, pink skirt.

I used these photos from dance class as part of a 30 minute challenge last Saturday to make this layout.

Anna’s jazz class was on Tuesday night. At her level they are leaping and turning all over the place. They do much of their work across the floor and it’s good to see that the instructor insists on working both left and right sides. Anna isn’t as thrilled with her costume, a black and red biketard, or maybe it’s the fishnet stockings that go with it. Anyway, I’m sure she’ll look amazing in it as always.

Here’s a layout I made of Anna and her MVC All Star teammates cheering on the participants at last month’s Diabetes Walk.

We have been blessed at all the home games so far this season with wonderful weather. Here are the lovely ladies that performed this week:

We performed to “Moves Like Jagger” which was a crowd favorite:

It was a busy day between the MVC Jr. performance and my A-Team plaza performance. But it was a good day for lots of dancing! It was fun to have so many of the Jr. cheerleaders out on the plaza. The little ones were not shy especially when it came to getting up there and dancing along.

The lovely ladies of the MVC A-Team!

Dancing to “Shut the Phunk Up” and SKOL. (Note: I start on the ground in front far right for the first song. I am second from the right in front for “Skol”)

 

It was Anna’s 5th year participating as an MVC Jr. Cheerleader. It has given her an opportunity to perform on the field at the Dome during a Vikings home game many times. The first few years they held two camps each year–one during the summer for a preseason game and the other in the winter. Lately however, this has changed to be a once a year opportunity early in the regular season. After three days of practice the girls were ready to try out the field. It was only about 8:30 in the morning, but boy those kids had a lot of energy. As an alumni of the MVC I usually have the opportunity to help out. That means unlike the other parents, I get to hang out on  the field.

Anna at her morning field practice. Since she is one of the older girls she was in the back row.

Trying out the opponents bench.

The entrance. Love those poms held high!

Look at that hair go.

Ending pose with her MVC All Star teammate and friend, Lexi.

After the Jr. practice we headed outside for my A-Team practice and performance on the Plaza (more on that later). Some of the other activities on the Plaza include a round of “Fan Feud” pitting fans from each team against each other. Anna got selected to represent the Vikings fans.

Anna waiting her turn to represent the Viking fans.

I think she got the toughest question!

Showing off her prize for playing “Fan Feud”.

Back to the game and on the field during the second quarter waiting for the other girls to arrive in anticipation of their half time performance. My job was to keep 200 girls corralled and away from the Detroit Lion’s bench while shooing their parents down to the corner.

Anna on the field.

Mother and daughter on the field.

The Jr. Cheerleaders celebrating what would be the last touchdown the Vikings made that game. At least they were still winning at half time.

I did get a good view of Anna performing. The only bad thing was that it was mostly of her back. I choose to stay on the back side of the field to have a better view rather than from the front of the routine where I’d only catch a glimpse of her. Even from the back, her kicks are still amazing!

This was my favorite shot of her performance and one of the few times she was facing my direction.

She’s still smiling.

Love her enthusiasm.

(The video stops about 10 seconds before the end.) It was a great performance and a program that she’s enjoyed for years now. I know it has made many wonderful memories for both of us.

Since dancing with the Minnesota Viking Cheerleaders A-Team we’ve had the opportunity a few times a year to perform on the field with the MVC during a game. It’s always exciting and nerve-racking and brings back lots of memories. This year the opportunity came early to perform a pre-game routine before the September 18th game. It was a busy morning with practices for both the pre-game routine and our routine for the Plaza.

The A-Team in the Dome. They let the cheerleaders have the field before the teams do in the morning. That means an early call time.

Anna came prepared for the early morning chill.

It was a morning that threatened rain by the time we were to perform on the plaza. Since the ground was wet, we had to modify the beginning of our routine to stay off the wet pavement. The drizzle stopped just prior to dancing and as soon as we were finished it started again.

The MVC A-Team dancing to “Shut the Phunk Up”. (I start 3rd from the left in the front row on the ground and quickly switch to the back row.)

After this routine on the Plaza it was back inside the Dome to our seats on the field. Now field seats are either great (if the play is in your end) or terrible (all plays at the other end). It is fun to be so close to the action and actually hear what is going on.

The MVC and A-Team perform together to “Pause”. I’m somewhere  in there! And I have the distinction of being the oldest lady out there dancing.

On the field together…we had fun even if the Vikings lost.

I couldn’t resist the play on words! The temperatures were in the 90s with the heat index pushing 100. It was my first time dancing with my A-team this season. I missed the first pre-season game because it was Ellie’s 7th birthday. Since Jeff and the boys were off taking Brandon to college, both of the girls came with me downtown.

(photo by Ellie)

Hot and sweaty after a short practice, but still my beautiful A-team teammates (photo by Ellie).

The A-team performed two routines in addition to SKOL for the fans on the plaza:

One to “Party Anthem” (most of the time I’m towards the front right)

The second to “Don’t Want to Go Home” (most of the time I’m towards the right side)

The videos are thanks to my daughter, Anna.

Hanging out on the plaza:

We were all just dripping by the time we got back to the car and were anxious to be home and just relax. Pulling into the driveway the garage door wouldn’t open, so Anna hopped out to try the keypad. By that time I realized it wasn’t our garage door that was the problem, it was that there was no power in the neighborhood. I had taken my husband’s keys with me since that key ring had just the car key and a house key. But it wasn’t our house key (which I found out by trying the door). I still had another backup (or so I thought). We keep a lock box under our deck. I haven’t used it for years, but I still remembered the code. It was empty and I was seriously locked out of my own house and my husband wasn’t coming home for another two days. We hadn’t eaten dinner yet so I took the girls with me back into Chaska for a bite at Arbys. Towards the end of dinner Anna called a friend who lived in the neighborhood and they had found out that the power probably wouldn’t be restored until after midnight or later. The girls just looked at me and said, “What are we going to do Mommy?” I had no idea, but started looking through my contacts list on my cell phone and praying. I called my friend, Gail, who calls her home “The Blessing House”. She said to come on over and she’d leave the light on. We took over her two bedrooms downstairs and she even provided pjs and toothbrushes. The girls and I were royally blessed by the “Blessing House” and Gail that evening.

Ellie ready for bed.

Well, maybe NOT so ready for bed once she found Miss Gail’s masks and feathers. I caught her dancing in her room after I’d tucked her in. I guess we were on an adventure that was just too exciting for her.

Anna was ready to relax and sleep.

In the morning Gail made us hot chocolate and we sat in her window seats overlooking the lake. We finally made it home later that morning and the power was back on. In the car ride home Ellie commented, “When I grow up and have a house, I want it to be just like Miss Gail’s house. It’s going to be a God’s house.”  (YES! I think it was a good adventure after all.)

For the second year the MVC All Stars and a few MVC themselves participated in the Albertville Friendly Days parade. This year the group was quite a bit closer to the front which made the afternoon go much faster. It was a bit cool while the girls were waiting in the line up so they huddled around the truck, but once they got going the weather was wonderful. Lots of princesses and even the crash test dummies came by to greet the girls. Ellie and I watched part of the parade until their unit came by, then we joined in with the other parents and family members that trailed along behind.

 

Both girls passed their level tests in dance this year. Ellie earned a level 1 ballet/jazz trophy and Anna earned her level 2 jazz trophy. In previous years the trophies were handed out at the recital. This year they held a banquet where they had the dancers demonstrate their skills prior to receiving their trophy.

Ballet jump has Ellie airborne.

Demonstrating such grace.

Her favorite ballet move.

A jazz “grape vine” across the floor.

Airborne again leaping across the floor. Such concentration!

This time an airborne turn.

Ellie getting her trophy from her teacher Rachel.

A proud girl.

Anna’s allergies were acting up that night so she didn’t participate in the demonstrations, but she did get her trophy from her teacher Gena.