Tag Archives: music

You Can Count On Me

17 Apr

This is just a quick song for my friend Jaime, who reached out and let herself be vulnerable in a moment of need.  I’m glad we have each other.  So glad.

Why I’m (Sometimes) Glad I Stay at Home

8 Oct

Staying home is hard.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not starting any mommy wars here.  Mommy wars shouldn’t even be a thing, because obviously the children starting the whole thing.

“My mom won’t let me eat ice cream for dinner.”

“What?! Not cool.”

“I know!  Let’s pit them against each other.  They’ll be so busy fighting about who has it worse, they won’t have enough energy to argue with us about anything.”

So let’s all agree that we all have it the worst.  Every situation has its benefits and its drawbacks.  And no matter what your situation, I think we all have moments when we wonder if we’ve made the right decision for ourselves and our families.  I know lately I’ve felt overwhelmed by being at home at my children’s every beck and call.

And then this happens and I’m so grateful for the opportunity to stay home and not miss a moment.  Remind me of this post in a week when I’m fed up.  Again.

In the Zone

19 Feb

I went back to work a few weeks ago.  It terrified me and I questioned the decision daily but ultimately jumped back into hosting piano lessons in my home and commuting with both kids 45 minutes north once a week to tutor.

To make it all happen, I drive the girls up to my mom’s house while I teach in her town.  Then all three of us stay the night with my parents and drive home in the morning.  My mom drives her car down and helps out here, prepping the house for piano lessons, babysitting the kids while I teach (along with my amazing neighborhood babysitter), and then helping with dinner and bath time before heading home.  Hubs is responsible for picking up the house the night we are gone so it’s presentable to students and their parents.  And we all get a little help from the frozen entree aisle in the grocery store.  It’s stressful and exhausting.  It means I have to carve out time each week to lesson plan, usually while wearing the baby and tossing snacks at the toddler.

But it’s worth it.

My house is guaranteed to get a fresh, clean start one day each week.  My open floor plan means that students and parents can see every room on the first floor from my front door.  No hiding sinks full of dishes or forgetting to pick the toddler underwear up from the living room floor.  The rest of the week, it looks like a catastrophic Babies ‘R’ Us explosion has ransacked the house.  But on lesson day?  We pass for clean(ish).

And me?  Those two days I am forced to dry my hair, put on makeup, and find some pants that fit from a drawer other than the one housing all my pajamas. I feel pretty on those days.  I think it’s just as important to let go of the expectation that I need to get dressed (or shower) every day.  I have a newborn, for crying out loud.  But I still need days to take care of myself – to feel like how I look matters.

But the best part is how the lessons make me feel.  Once my student walks in and hands me their lesson notebook, I go into the zone.  I am a great teacher.  Responsive to student strengths and weaknesses, motivating, kind, funny.  My enthusiasm rubs off on the kids and the energy we share is addictive.  There’s nothing quite like the high of hearing a student work on a piece for weeks only to come in one lesson and nail it, their face glowing with pride.  Two days a week, I get to share my love of math and music.  I get to build self-esteem in my students.  I get to relax and have fun.  Because when I teach, I feel more like myself than any other time.

It’s a part of my soul – and I’m committed to making it a priority.  Everyone should have something that makes them feel “in the zone.”  What’s yours?

Merry Christmas

25 Dec

To you and yours, whatever holiday you celebrate, I hope it is a wonderful one.

My gift to you.   Video of a ukulele Christmas music parade…or of a toddler being chased and tortured by ukulele music.  You decide.  Either way, the “is Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree a Christmas song?” and the strange little walk at the end of the video get me every time.  I am a very lucky wife and mother.

On Being a No-Name Blogger

18 Aug

Last week, @story3girl posted on her blog,  Sometimes It’s Hard, about how she was feeling lost in the blogging world.  There are so many big bloggers out there that it is all-too-easy to feel lost…like the new kid at school just learning the ropes and trying not to get a big “kick me” sign taped on her back.  Those big bloggers we all look up to?  Super-nice.  But it’s still hard not to feel intimidated.

She got me thinking about what I’m doing here in my little corner of the internet.  I mean, I know my IRL friends read the blog, and my FB friends usually click over, but do I want more?  Do I want to be an important blogger?  Do I want to make money with this?  Does blogging appeal to me as a career?

I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to being thrilled with the increased traffic and comments I’ve been seeing since I started back up this month  (and by increased, I mean sometimes I get 3 comments.  Woo hoo!).  There’s a validation in having people like what you have to say…especially since I spend most of my day with a toddler who rarely tells me what a great job I’m doing as a SAHM.  Comments and traffic are one of the ways bloggers feel “seen”.  And isn’t that what all people want?  To know they are being seen and heard for who they are?

But.  I started writing for me.  I needed an outlet for processing my experiences as a mother and a woman struggling with a mood disorder.  I suppose I could have bought a leather-bound journal at Barnes & Noble and written for myself, but without an audience, the writing would have been shallow and unfocused (I swear my old diaries are literally painful to read through).  The first thing my writing students learned to always ask was “who’s the audience?”  An audience holds you responsible for your writing.  They bring the writing to life.  This blog gives my writing purpose.

I like to think of my blog – my writing – like my music.  I play two instruments…well.  But I hold no expectations of ever being a famous pianist or  flautist.  I play for the love of music, for the process of learning a new piece, and for myself.  It’s been more difficult to enjoy and stay motivated without an ensemble to perform with, because music is just like writing – it needs an audience to truly come alive.  But still, I play, and I teach, and I share what I know.

As long as the writing continues to bring me clarity and serves as cheap therapy, I’ll still be here blogging.  I enjoy the process, and especially the peace being vulnerable and open has brought to my life.  And although I don’t get many comments, I know friends and family are keeping up with me, and that my words mean something to them.  I think that’s enough for me.

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