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11 March 2013

I can't remember if I've talked about Karis going to gymnastics on this blog or not. Either way, a few weeks ago we started taking Karis...and she LOVES it. I knew she would, but she exceeded my expectations. The first time we walked in, I was filling out all the registration information and 3 times Karis took off in to the gym and started climbing on things. She did not want to wait! This is all with her never before having seen any of the equipment or what to do. 

Now, her class is not a formal gymnastics class. They do have that for 18 month olds, but it runs in semesters and the spring semester is half-way through and another doesn't start until the fall. What I take her to is called Play Zone; it's an hour and a half of climbing and play in 2 different gyms, and it's pretty much all kids her age. She gets to use real gymnastics equipment and it helps to build up their confidence and strength.

I really wanted her to have something fun and active to do. We try to get out and do things and not spend our days sitting around the house. God created us to move...and little ones really need it! When we lived in Cedar Rapids we went to the park to play every single day. I think I've told yall that the nearest park to our condo here in MB is 15 miles away. It's a pretty good drive just for a park. Plus, though the weather is much nicer here, we've still had plenty of cool weather that makes outside not the most favorable option. So, gymnastics is the perfect answer. Also, even when the weather is really nice and warm (and we are spending most days at the beach or pool), we are not going to spend 7 days a week in the sun every single week. It's just not good for my precious baby's skin. :) Anyway, there's some background on what she's are you ready for a ton of pictures. Ha! 

The gym sessions are divided into 2 segments: one in the little gym, one in the big. We start in the little gym and the first apparatus that she does (and loves) is this long trampoline. The kids climb the stairs, then run along a long trampoline, then crash in to the mat at the end, they climb across the mats at the end. Here it is...
She sometimes likes to try to be sneaky and turn around and run the opposite direction, just because she loves it so much. Clearly, there are arrows right below her feet which show the right direction. :) We are working on following directions like this. 
She made it to the end...and is so cute sitting there! 
 Now, to climb down the mats. 
And she's off...down the ramp! 
I don't have any good pictures, but EVERY SINGLE TIME after she runs down that ramp she starts dancing. Every. Single. Time. No other kid in the whole place does it, but Karis does. I love it...and it makes me laugh. Every. Time. 

Next there are several different groups of mats and small apparatuses that she climbs on. First is a bar. 
Then a small, but wide, balance beam. 
 And more mats and pads to climb up. 
 There's a very fun tunnel to crawl through. 
 And another taller balance beam. She got a little help from her Daddy to walk on this one. (This is the first time Daddy has come with us to gymnastics, so that I could get some pictures of her). 
We tried out the monkey bars next, since Daddy was there to help.  
 I can hardly get over the way she is looking at John in this picture. This girl LOVES her Daddy.
I love it. 
 About halfway through the time, we head over to the big gym. The big gym is a huge for real gymnastics training gymnasium. It's very cool. The part of me that took years of gymnastics growing up gets super excited every time we go in there. She absolutely loves the trampoline.  
 The big foam pit is super fun too! 
I'm glad she's gotten more comfortable playing in there without me. Let me just tell you that it's not easy to get out of the foam pit, then add a pregnant belly to the mix. Super difficult. :) 
 There's also a huge inflatable that she climbs up the ladder, then slides down this slide. 
 Ha! Sliding down. 
 She's so sweet - waving to another little girl who is playing on the same inflatable. 
 And now blowing kisses to the camera. Love her! 
 After class is over all the kids sit at the edge of the floor mat to get a snack and stamps. They get two animal crackers and they might as well be the greatest thing she's ever eaten. She's so sweet and still as she waits. 

Then one of the coaches comes around and puts a stamp on the kids' feet. She loves this part too.
 Here's a shot of her stamp, she's always so proud of it!  
So, there you have it...a little trip to gymnastics with Karis. 

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