When I was a girl I loved The Nutcracker ballet. Sometimes my mother would take me to a live production. Sometimes I would watch it on tv while Mikhail Baryshnikov leaped and spun and jumped and twirled all over the land of the sugar plums. I dreamed of being Gelsey Kirkland so I could be spun and twirled by the aforementioned manly-man of the ballet. My first born daughter bears his name as her middle. It was magical when I took Whitney and Cassidy to their first Nutcracker, even though Cassidy was nearly scarred for life by the appearance of the evil Mouse King with glowing red eyes! Every time I hear the opening strains of Tchaikovsky's Waltz of the Flowers it takes me to a better place and time. A time of wonder and fantasy, artistic beauty and amazing talent. Tonight I visited a local production of The Nutcraker by the Idaho Ballet Theatre, featuring guest artists from the Utah Regional Ballet. For two hours I was again transported back into that land where candy reigns supreme. In the finale, when the Sugar Plum Fairy and her handsome cavalier pas de deux it give me chills. I don't want it to end. I want him to hold her in that final pose forever. I know the moment he puts her down, the show is over and it's back to reality. So, if you're looking for something to bring magic and wonder to your holiday season, escape for awhile to the the land of nutcrackers and mice and waltzing flowers and dancing snowflakes and the Sugar Plum Fairy. If you can escape with Mr. Baryshnikov, even better. Even more. Magical.