‘tis the season…

…for tacky concerts tra la la la laaaaaa la la la la.

December fast approaches and around town the extracurricular schools are competing to convince the parents of their students that all the money forked out throughout the year was worthwhile (and therefore we’ll see you again next year). There are concerts, art exhibitions and martial arts displays bombarding thousands of poor parents who are already brain and schedule overloaded as the logistics of Christmas looms.

This is Miss Fruitarian’s first end of year concert. And I am in a state of shock. When I chose the local ballet school, it was on the grounds of proximity, parking and convenience. I had seen the snazzy-troupes-in-fluorescent-lycra pictures in the foyer, but was sure the whole escapade wouldn’t be too bad.

The notes started arriving mid-year. ‘Save the dates’ for concerts, rehearsals and photo days. Scary amounts for costume deposits were mentioned. I started to feel scared.

Reality hit in earnest two weeks ago with the arrival of a skimpy costume covered in metallic polka dots. With matching headband and bike pants that cost me a small fortune. Miss F is delighted with it all and I don’t want to taint her happiness with my own misgivings. But I am wondering what it is in our culture that has turned a simple dance concert into a Jon-Benet Ramsey tribute night? Why the curled hair, red lipstick and tacky costumes?

And why my passive acceptance of the situation? I did complain about the make-up requirements and was treated with disdain, told “they look too washed out on stage without red lipstick”. Other mothers seem fine with it all. Am I alone? My pathetic protest is to use lipgloss only and make plans for new activities next year. Which is a shame. Dancing has been good for Miss F’s coordination and confidence. And performing in front of an audience is good experience. But why all the pizzazz? What’s wrong with a bit of age-appropriate low-key pink tulle? My daughter is 6, and has so many years ahead of her to be a slut. I don’t need the sexploitation of women to be bombarding her just yet.

I look forward to gymnastics next year.

In an attempt to reclaim some innocence, here’s a healthy and cute pink dip to serve at your end of year celebrations.

beetroot tzatziki dip recipe

Just a bit of innocent fun

Beetroot tzatziki

1 small cucumber
200ml plain Greek yoghurt
1-2 garlic cloves, crushed (to taste)
1 tsp olive oil
1 tsp red wine vinegar
Salt & black pepper
225g can sliced beetroot, drained

Water crackers and carrot sticks, to serve

Grate the cucumber. Drain excess liquid and then press with paper towel (this will stop your dip being too runny) and place in a bowl. Mix in the yoghurt, garlic, olive oil and vinegar. Season to taste.

Blitz the beetroot in a stick blender. If needed, add some of the yoghurt mixture to the blender to give the beetroot a nice smooth consistency.

Mix the beets into the yoghurt mixture (little girls like this stage), and mix until well combined. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Serve with water crackers, carrot sticks, green beans, breadsticks, falafels, grilled chicken strips for dipping – anything that takes your imagination. Also delicious on Turkish bread salad sandwiches.

MAKES 2 CUPS

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3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    So was the gymnastics better? I am starting to think about dancing for my Miss3 but like you I don’t see the need to tart them up like that and your post is making me have second thoughts. They are kids, let them dress like them for as long as they can.

    • 2

      wendyblume said,

      yes, gym was better. much better. although i know people who attend really low key dance schools too. They’re harder to find though – usually just run out of school and church halls. I’d look for one of them next time rather than the flashy ones with ads everywhere.

  2. 3

    Lisa said,

    This is what Mr 6 told his kindergarten teacher we’d bring for the class party tomorrow!! Not sure he’s ever eaten it or will tomorrow but love the fact that he knows Mummy wants him to eat healthily!!


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