Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The Best that *She* Can Be

I found out what song Katya sang in front of everyone at the "My Family" celebration last Friday. In case you missed that post, it was when Katya ended up being the only first-grader without her parents at the school's huge "My Family" assembly. Each family was supposed to present an activity or tradition; we had planned on teaching a fun game we love. Katya, however, was stuck all on her own...
And look what that amazing little girl decided to do!!

She SANG this song in front of the school!

All by herself!

When I now read the lyrics, it brings tears to my eyes; they have such powerful meaning when taken in the context of how scared and disappointed she was.

I AM SO INCREDIBLY PROUD OF HER!

Read the song for yourselves and you'll see what I mean. I wish I could post a recording of the song, but I couldn't figure out how to do it. (And I couldn't get Katya to sing it for me--yet).


"The Best that I Can Be"

(the American Girls Anthem)


Look to the past,

Learn for the future.

Look to the past,

Learn for the future.

I can be brave,

I can be true,

I will do the best

that I can do.

And I can dream,

I can dare,

I can keep on trying

if I really care.

If I reach out,

I can belong.

I can be a friend

Lend a helping

hand so strong.

I'll hang onto my dreams,

Flying high and free,

And I will be the best

that I can be.


I can be brave,

I can be strong

When I'm alone or

something's going wrong.

I'll do what's right,

I can be true,

I will keep on going,

and I'll carry through.


I'll use my head,

I can be fair,

I can be a friend,

I can really show I care.

I'll sing with my own voice,

The voice inside of me,

And I will be the best

that I can be.


I won't let one mistake

discourage me.

I can be brave,

I can be strong,

I can be kind,

Make up my mind.

I can reach out,

I can belong,

Sing my own song.


I can be true,

And follow through.

I can be fair,

I can dream,

I can dare,

I can share,

I can be free,

I can be me.




I can be brave,

I can be true,

I will do the best

that I can do.

And I can dream,

I can dare,

I can keep on trying

if I really care.

If I reach out,

I can belong,

I can be a friend,

Lend a helping hand so strong.

I'll hang onto my dreams,

Flying high and free.

Yes, I will be the best

that I can be.


The song comes from the Broadway-style show "An American Girl Review" that plays at American Girl Place in Chicago and Los Angeles. After taking Katya to see "Circle of Friends," the other American Girl theatrical production in New York, I also bought the soundtrack to the "Review." My girls LOVE both soundtracks and know them by heart. The plays are so well done... No girl under the age of six is supposed to be admitted to the theater, but I fibbed (Egad! Don't tell the theater police!) and brought Natalia with us to see "Circle of Friends" again last summer. I mean, the girl can sit still for the New York-Moscow flight and she's been the Bolshoi. I think she can handle an hour long play!!!

The soundtracks to "Circle of Friends" and "The American Girls Review" are great even if you haven't see the plays. Both girls love staging their own productions for me. Last summer we had MANY shows!! Luckily my tickets were free :-) Here are snapshots from the scenes when they're Felicity and Elizabeth (Colonial Williamsburg girls--a patriot and a loyalist-- in 1774), Kirsten (a Swedish immigrant pioneer in 1854), Kit and Ruthie (friends in Ohio during the Depression in 1934 who struggle with their families' very different financial situations), and Kaya and Brown Deer (Nez Perce Native American sisters in the Pacific Northwest in 1764).



Here are more pictures when they're pretending to be Molly (Illinois, 1944, her dad is a doctor in the army during World War II stationed in England). The pictures of the girls as Samantha and Nellie (New York City, 1904), Josefina (New Mexico, 1824) and Addy (Pennsylvania in 1864) didn't come out well enough to include.



How I wish that Katya could have taken part in the open auditions for the upcoming American Girl movie about Kit that's premiering in theaters in July... She was so upset that living in Russia precluded her from doing so.

The shows that the girls put on are tremendous. They mean more to me than any performance at the Bolshoi!! I know that these are the memories I will cherish for the rest of my life and that I'll recall with nostalgic tears when they grow up... I am so, so thankful for these special times with them...

(What is up the spacing problems on Blogger? Some lines are spaced, some are smooshed together, and I can't figure out any way to correct it... Argh!)

8 comments:

Tina in CT said...

OK, I took a much need break here and checked the blog. How do I look with watery eyes here at my desk after reading the song and thinking of poor Katya last Friday all alone at the program at her school? She is a very courageous AMERICAN GIRL. Every penny spent at American Girl place is worth it as the girls have gained so much from the history and values. I wish so much that I had also been able to see her perform at the program. I'm very proud of her courage and confidence! - Grandma Streusel in the USA

Tina in CT said...

P.S. I KNOW that I enjoy going to American Girl Place each January as much as the girls do and look forward to it each year!

Hopefully we'll be meeting up with Rachel and her family there this summer.

Muddy said...

What fun! You have some very imaginative and expressive girls there. Great pictures.

Rachael said...

Oh, what a brave & smart little girl!

And, can I just again that your girls have the most AWESOME collection of outfits/costumes!

Annie said...

These are amazing, adorable photos. I'm sure you know. I remember when Aidan and Lydia used to do "shows"....they were amazing. I never thought to take photos; I thought it would ruin the moment, but I kept some of the tickets and "popcorn" and programs. Lydia took Irish Dance and I just found the program to a presentation she and her friend Deirdre put on for us: Stream Dance. Actually, I recall that it was watching Stream Dance when I first realized Lydia was really talented!

But perhaps my favorite was the one where they did a "review" ending in the grand finale - presenting me with a new hot water bottle. Or - was it the show "Achy Breaky Chair" performed as a "make-up" after an unfortunate rough-housing episode.

Perhaps I should take Anastasia to American Girl Place. I've frankly always been a bit snooty about those books, feeling that books by Laura Ingalls Wilder and Maud Hart Lovelace are far superior... I sometimes undo myself by being a little too "hoity-toity" I'm afraid.

Tina in CT said...

American Girl Place is the most fantastic place and all of their products are equally fantastic.

Grandma to Katya and Natalia

garnet said...

I'm really impressed with her courage. I know very well that every girl of that age could / would do that.

bleeding espresso said...

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Thank you!