Olivia Clark Omardien

Staff Writer
Columbus Parent

Age: 33

Job: Ballet dancer with BalletMet Columbus for 12 years

Husband: Hisham Omardien, the ballet master and a former dancer at BalletMet. Married for 5 years.

Daughter: Safiyyah, 3

Neighborhood: Columbus

If you had to be on a reality-TV show, which one would it be?

The obvious choice would be "So You Think You Can Dance?," but actually I would love to try the obstacle courses on the show "Wipeout." I love watching the contestants try to get through without getting too beat up by the course. I think it would be fun to give it a try!

Favorite thing to do for family fun in Central Ohio:

We got zoo memberships this year for the Columbus Zoo. The family pass is very affordable and I love going to the zoo on short trips. Safiyyah can pick two or three animals she wants to see that day, she can ride the carousel, and we can head home without cramming the whole zoo experience into one day.

Favorite restaurant to take a kid:

We like to take Safiyyah to Taj Mahal on High Street, close to OSU's campus. She has grown up eating her Daddy's curries (he is a great cook!) and she loves to eat Indian food.

Favorite way to spend a lazy day off:

No plans! It is so rare to have a day with nowhere to go, no place to be. We love to watch movies as a family - stay in our PJs, play, and usually cook something yummy.

What have you learned as a parent that you wish someone had told you before you had your child?

That I would never sleep again - ever. I would have slept a lot more during my pregnancy if I knew I would never get another good night's rest.

What's the funniest thing your child has said or done?

We realized Safiyyah was at the age that we could no longer just leave the TV on and forget about it when she asked us what sex was. The TV was left on "Two and a Half Men," and she picked up a new vocabulary word. Luckily she was young enough to forget about it a minute later.

What's your favorite holiday season memory from your own childhood?

My parents always told us that animals magically had the ability to talk for a short while at midnight every Christmas. So after we got back from the late church service, we would get in the truck and drive to the top of the hill at my parents' farm. We would turn off the truck, roll down the windows, and listen. There was usually snow on the ground and it was always so beautiful and peaceful. Midnight would come, Christmas would come - and we swear we heard whispers in the woods from the animals telling each other "Merry Christmas."

What's the best advice you ever received as a parent?

My mom told me before Safiyyah was born that it is important to pick your battles. That was such good advice! Safiyyah likes to play dress up and often wants to go to the store or daycare dressed as Tinkerbell or a princess or a ballerina. I let her do it. I save the battles for important things like not picking your nose!

The Lady Jackets, representing wives and partners of players, is part of the Columbus Blue Jackets Foundation. One of the Lady Jackets' biggest fundraisers hits Nationwide Arena next month, Dec. 4-18, when they collect bids at each home game for gift baskets they've assembled (with electronics, recipes, movies and at least one autographed item by a Jackets player). All proceeds go to help local charities. Stop by the Foundation Corner behind Section 111 in and make your bid!