Saturday, November 26, 2011

Our first pantomime with kids

The company I work for books out two full shows of the pantomime every year as our family day event.

We've had a date with friends of ours since JULY and this was the same Saturday as the panto.

Isn't that usually the case?

Things like this are very simple in my mind - the event that was booked first is the one you go to but D really, really loves the panto so I put my name down for tickets hoping that somehow things would all work out.

Closer to the time I had a brilliant idea.

We'd go to the first half of the show until intermission .... and then shoot through to Pretoria.

So that's exactly what we did.

D prepped them for a few days beforehand telling them there'll be lights and music and lots of people singing and dancing and loud sounds.

Kendra told him, "NO loud music" :)

This year's show is Cinderella - they have no idea who Cinderella is. They actually have no idea who any famous characters are which is exactly how I like it.

I will keep the marketing machine away from them for as long as possible. :)

So this week we quickly told them the story and today at the panto we discovered that they are now obsessed with the ugly stepsisters. I actually don't like talk of ugly!!!!

(For the party two weeks ago I had to email my friend and say "what exactly is that theme and don't laugh!" It was "in the night garden" or something like that. *ahem*)

We were seated right at the back (thank goodness) because when the children got antsy, we were only disturbing the family in front of us.

They were entranced by the lights mainly and the ugly stepsisters who were "naughty because they smacked Cinderella and told her no she couldn't come to the party (Prince Charming's ball)".

All in all, not too bad an experience.

I expected it to be much worse and thought we'd have to leave after 20 minutes but we only had one time-out (yes, we took the offender outside the theatre for time-out) and then a well-behaved child.

We each got snack packs with far too much food. I only gave the kids one packet of mini cheddars and half a 125 ml fruit juice between the two of them.

The babies also each received a beautiful Cinderella book.

D's efforts to contain them
during intermission

this was what all the fuss and bother at the window was about - beautiful!
And after that we also had a lovely afternoon with our friends.
I always feel so comfortable at their house because they are minimalists and therefore there is nothing around for the kids to break :)
Connor especially was totally enamoured with their dog and we had to keep saying, "gentle hands, Connor" (Claudia, I totally stole that from you and it works).
We only left at 6, got home at about 6:40 and the kids told me they wanted to skip supper and baths.... and I let them!
No-one ever died from missing a meal, right?
They only wanted their milk so after their bottles, they jumped into their pyjamas and were fast asleep.
I'm not a fan of two plans on one day so it was a very full but nevertheless rewarding day.
How was your Saturday?

Would you do time-out even in a public place?

What do you do if you have two invites for the exact same date and time?


  1. Good for you for time-outing the children when out and about. It would only take them a minute to learn that they could be naughty in public and get away with it. Seems they are so smart that way.

  2. I love that your kiddos don't know any characters. The only ones our girls know are Dr. Seuss / The Cat in the Hat; Curious George; and they recognize Elmo...all from publishing. :) :) At this age, I'm limiting the Great Marketing Machines, too (particularly since I used to be one of those machines!). ;)

    And yes, we will institute time outs / discipline, no matter where we are. I will leave a store without purchasing something / leave a restaurant without eating if I have to. My agenda is no excuse for misbehaving.

    So glad you all made the best of a full - but fun - schedule! And good for you, following the kiddos''re right that no one ever died from missing supper. ;)

    Our Saturday was great! Family time in the morning / through lunch...and then I had time scheduled with my girlfriend for a pedicure and coffee on the way home. Loved it! :) :)

    Happy Sunday tomorrow!

  3. How fantastic of your company to do something like this! I have never taken my kids to a panto. Joshua goes a lot because the school always seems to have them as field trips so I've never needed to take him. Am not quite sure Joel will be able to cope with it just yet but I think I will try in next year. He doesn't know any other characters either btw. Only Barney. And I did not introduce that to him - it came from the school.
    We usually take him to the car when he acts out. So yes, we do have a form of timeout. In extreme cases we just leave!
    ps...I also don't know half of these party themes because we don't have cable tv. Went to a Dora the Explorer party last year and we all had no idea who or what that was so had to google!

  4. I took Polly to her first Panto 2 years ago and she was abit confused, but loved it. It was a rip off of Sleeping Beauty, a story she loves, so she couldn't understand why the panto wasn't following the story.

    Cute pics x

  5. If I've already booked something else I rarely adapt or change my plans. There are a few exceptions. I'll flex my rescheduling or creative ways to attend all muscles if the newcomer event is with someone who isn't in the country or area in general and can only get to me on that one particular day. (And only if they don't make a habit of giving me hardly any notice to try and juggle things).

    Actually I'm a terrible person to try and make last minute plans with. Everyone who knows me knows that you need a good 4 to 6 weeks to get a spot in my diary. I'm not the girl you phone about some cool idea you had for a thing later today or tomorrow.

    As for the time-outs, we don't do time-outs but if N misbehaves in public she'll get one or two firm warnings and then she'll get a smack on the bum if needed. It doesn't go down quietly, but it usually stops whatever she was busy with to begin with.

  6. I always try to do the one we said yes to first - as was this Saturday when we invited H's cousins over. Then my cousin moved his big birthday bash (always for us THE party of the year) to the same date. Reluctantly we stuck to our first commitment.

    Oh and the Princess talks about the "Rude (ongeskikte) stepsisters, not ugly. I love that.

  7. I love these's fun to see your kids in action and enjoying the show. Kendra looks so petite! A & M are really into music and "show" type things, so I'm hoping we get to attend something during the Christmas season. I think they will at least enjoy the program at church.

    Re: time outs...yes, we definitely do them in public if necessary!


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