Category: Videos (page 1 of 14)

I hit publish before I wrote a title, so now, this is it. (Because I can’t think of anything else.)

The girls participated in the Ohio Music Teacher’s Association Ribbon Festival –  Julia for the ninth, Lucy for the fifth, and Phoebe for the first time.

You can see Julia and Lucy’s past performances here:

2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016

I love the Ribbon Festival and look forward to it every spring.  It is possible that this isn’t true, but in my memory, every Ribbon Festival Saturday has been sunny.  I’ve been watching many of the same students perform alongside my children for years and it’s inspiring to watch them grow.  It makes me hopeful for our world.  So long as we’re nourishing that part of ourselves that music speaks to, the part where it comes from when we make it, I think we can be okay.

Lucy was the first of my kids to perform, so she was the one to alert me to the fact that my camera was switched to photo not video which is why the beginning of her song is cut off!

Lucy plays Allegretto I at the 2017 Ribbon Festival

I think this is her best performance to date, which I always seem to be saying because she is getting better and better at managing her nerves while playing for people.  This is what the judge wrote:

Good steady playing.  Nice effort to make mp & mf differences – can you make the differences even bigger?  Your posture and hand position are very good, and your stage presence is excellent – beautiful bow!  Keep up the good work!

Phoebe had a rough first performance. Nevertheless, she persisted!

Phoebe plays Cuckoo at the 2017 Ribbon Festival

Phoebe has worked hard on Cuckoo. I was surprised to see her struggle so much.  But she was proud to have done it.  And Jack was proud of her, too.  Did you hear his “Bravo, Phoebe!” at the end of the video?  He’s her biggest fan.

Here’s what the judge shared with her:

Congratulations on your first Ribbon Festival!  I hope you will play in many more.  You did quite well in playing the right notes, and in getting the hands together.  You show good promise as a young pianist.  Be sure to play the piece several times from memory for your family and friends so you strengthen your memory of the music before you play it in public.  I look forward to hearing from you again.

Julia performed last and did just fine.

Julia plays Sonatina Op.55, No. 1 Vivace at the 2017 Ribbon Festival

The judge wrote this:

– Good p to f contrast at m. 8.  At m. 22 – can you give more sound when you start the sixteenth to show us that it’s a sequence of earlier material?

– Nice contrast in mood at m. 53

– Smooth passagework in sixteenths.  Can you bring out the top note of RH chords?

– Can you pull your hair back so we can see your face and make a more direct connection with your beautiful performance?

– Very well done – please keep up the good work!  Solid preparation.

I am so proud of my girls.

Julia, Lucy, and Phoebe at the 2017 Ribbon Festival

I love it when they play the piano.

Laughing so hard it no longer makes a sound.

Dave showed me this video and I was like, “Huh?” We watched it again with the kids and I laughed. Now, countless views later, we sing and quote it like it’s Monty Python and the Holy Grail or something.

“That log had a child.”

Oh, let’s watch it again.

Sometimes picking the title is the hardest part.

I rolled up to school drop off with my van looking like this.

Driving Purple Poopmobile

We call it our one-eyed, one-horned driving purple poopmobile! It happens each fall that the birds start eating berries and hitting the van with purple bombs. I will wash it today and it will look like that again tomorrow, but people don’t know that and it mostly looks like I just don’t care! This is what happens when you park under a shady tree. I should clean out my garage and park there instead. It’s on my to-do list after clearing the stairway into the attic. I don’t really want to do either of those things. They are things that would make my life easier once I do them, but not so much easier that I’m all that motivated to get on it. There are so many other things I could do!

We have a six year old in the house again.

Phoebe is 6!

Happy Birthday to Bee!

Blowing out the candle

She’s still young enough to get away with running around in nothing but her underwear. The best thing she got for her a birthday? A hungry kitten she and her sister found. The kitten doesn’t belong to any of the neighbors and it’s beginning to look like she belongs to us.

Phoebe and her kitten

Kitten love

Phoebe named her Mabel.

Sweet Mabel

Adorable Mabel

She’s adorable and I can’t even try to pretend that I don’t already love her to pieces.

Julia participated in her first marching band competition over the weekend. When we shared with people that Julia was joining the marching band, more than five people said, “Oh, they win everything.” And they do. They did! Someone incredible made an awesome recap video.

Yes, that’s Julia licking the Best Percussion trophy at the 1:04 mark. She said it tasted like victory.

Vacation, all I ever wanted.

This is what Phoebe looked like yesterday – her last day of preschool.

Phoebe, on the last day of preschool

A few hours later, she graduated.

Preschool graduate

Phoebe graduates from preschool

Phoebe with her preschool teachers, Miss Heather and Miss Jen

After Julia and Lucy’s last day of school today, we celebrated the start of summer vacation with the old balloon wreath dart game, per usual.

Welcome to Summer Vacation

Balloon wreath dart game

Jackson won a whoopie cushion and it looks like we’ll be entertained all night.

Whoopie Cushion

Keep Calm and Play the Piano

Julia and Lucy had their year-end piano recital earlier this month. Everyone calls it The Cookie Recital because parents bring cookies to share after the performances which I love because baking cookies is my jam. I long for that feeling when someone chooses my cookie from the tray, takes a bite and exclaims, “Oh! These are delicious! Who made these?” (It has happened before!) Or at least finding that at the end of the event, none of my cookies are leftover? Yeah. I like that. But there was none of it this year because the glass in my (brand new!) oven door was broken by a flying step stool, so I had to take: *hangs head low and whispers* store bought cookies. Now, no one ever really knows who brought which cookies and it truly does not matter to anyone if they are homemade or store bought. As long as they aren’t poisoned or stolen, people are alright. But the shame I felt about those cookies was real. The fact that this is a ridiculous reason to feel shame makes it all the more shameful. These are the things I think about while I eat Little Debbie Salted Caramel Cookie Bars in my closet! I will tell you this, though: all of my store bought cookies were eaten.

The girls have had a great year with Ms. Winn. We love her. She is a wonderful teacher. Our hearts were broken when Mr. Palmer retired. I worried that the transition to a new teacher would be tough, but Ms. Winn made it an exciting opportunity. Julia and Lucy have made a lot of progress this year, thanks to Ms. Winn.

Julia, Ms. Winn, and Lucy

Lucy was the first performer at the recital. She played Long, Long Ago by Bayly and did a lovely job. She started to lose her way in the middle, but pulled it together without having to go back to the beginning or repeat a whole section which is a testament to how much she is growing musically. She has a better grasp of her music and I’m so proud of her.

Julia played Minuet in G Minor by Petzold.

She was disappointed in her performance because it was not her best. She was worried that she’d let me down, too. She wasn’t the only great performer to flub their piece. It happens. I still love hearing her play. I’m not sure she realizes that she cannot ever disappoint me by playing the piano.

Phoebe kept calling it The Barn instead of The Farm.

Last week, my mom and Jack and I accompanied Phoebe on her preschool field trip to The Farm at Walnut Creek. We had a great time feeding all sorts of animals, many with amazing tongues.

Phoebe feeds an animal with the largest tongue we saw all day

You can see more pictures here. I wish I had gotten one of Jack feeding the giraffes because he was so excited to do it. He told me about it, though.

Way big giraffe

I took all the photos with my phone. I haven’t carried my big camera in a while, which I feel guilty and sad about because 1) I have a pretty great camera and 2) I haven’t put as much effort into taking pictures, lately. The camera on my phone is so quick and convenient! And life moves so fast! I also need new rechargeable batteries.

Phoebe’s Funhouse

Phoebe loves to watch Hailey’s Magical Playhouse on YouTube. I can’t remember how we discovered it, but it has been her favorite thing to watch ever since. She wants to watch it all the time! ALL. THE. TIME. So, when she asked if she could make her own videos, I said YES! YES! I thought it seemed like a lot more fun than just watching videos or hearing me say no when she repeatedly asked to watch more videos. Here’s her first one. She’s very proud of it.

Musical

May began with Julia’s Spring Band Concert.

She’s the first drummer on the left, except for the last song in which she is the bass drum player on the right.

She loves band. She’s been practicing with the high school marching band after school, learning the marimba and playing the synthesizer. She’s also been writing music.

Julia's original music CD

Earlier this year, she put together a couple songs and gave them to her school principal along with a letter asking her to consider playing one or both of them at the school Valentine’s dance, which she did.

She told me she wants to be a composer. I told her she already is.

“Beautiful Tone, Beautiful Heart” – Shinichi Suzuki

We’ve been a part of the Ohio Music Teacher’s Association Ribbon Festival for two presidential terms. I can prove it with these links!

2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015

Julia played in her first Ribbon Festival the year President Obama took office. Lucy played in her first and (Julia played in her fifth) when he started his second term. It’s President Obama’s last year in the White House. I don’t know who our president will be next year, but I’m thinking a lot about that and also the fact that next year should hopefully, finally, be Phoebe’s first Ribbon Festival and maybe also Jackson’s.

Lucy and Julia at the 2016 Ribbon Festival

This year, Lucy played Au Clair de la Lune, which is my favorite song from Book One.

Lucy plays Au Clair de la Lune at the Ribbon Festival

Here’s what the judge said about it.

Beautiful singing tone! Your balance between the hands was very good and I can tell you’ve worked hard on that performance aspect. Remember to keep the wrists supported and up so you have greater control of your fingers and the piano keys. Be aware of your pinkies – can they be closer to the other fingers of your hand when when they’re not playing? Sometimes 5th fingers like to fly away, so inviting them to join in with the other fingers will help your hand work as a unit. It can take some time to get the 5th fingers to work with the others, so keep practicing. Review notes starting from each line so memory can be secure and comfortable. You really use your ear to listen to the sounds you are creating. Great job today! Thank you for playing.

Julia played the Vivace movement of Clementi’s Sonatina in C Major, Op 36, No. 1 from Book Three.

Julia plays the Vivace movement of Clementi's Sonatina in C Major, Op 36, No. 1 at the Ribbon Festival

(The shaky camera work and the scream at the end of the video were courtesy of Jackson. The abrupt cutoff marks the moment I’d HAD ENOUGH!)

This is what her judge said.

– Very clean playing and a steady rhythm.
– Like your touch and sound very much
– Nice expression
– Try to be more flexible with your wrists – may make it easier to play the scales
– Well done and keep up the good work!

I was proud of the girls and so was their teacher who – for the first time – was not Mr. Palmer. After 36 years of teaching, Mr. Palmer closed his studio and retired last August.

Lucy and Julia with Mr. Palmer at his retirement reception

He taught us so much and the impact he’s had on our lives is immense. And we’re just one of so many families that feel the same way. I am thankful for Mr. Palmer. He is an exceptional teacher and an extraordinary man. We miss seeing him every week.

Mr. Palmer's Studio

Julia at the piano at Mr. Palmer's Studio

He’ll be a part of who we are forever.

Our Musical Weekend

Saturday night, Lucy stood behind the Tuscarawas Philharmonic Orchestra with the Children’s Chorus and performed. She sang beautifully and with her whole heart. (And I could not help but remember this.)

Lucy performs in the children's chorus with the Tuscarawas Philharmonic Orchestra

The Children’s Chorus was an incredible experience for Lucy. The Orchestra Music Director and Conductor, Eric Benjamin, rehearsed with the chorus for six weeks to prepare for the annual Yuletide Celebration and he was amazing. He was exuberant and fun and knew how to connect with the kids. Lucy was scared the first day. She cried and we nearly left, but one of the assistants invited her to just stay and watch. So we stayed and she stood next to me watching rather than join the rest of the chorus. About halfway through that rehearsal, she started to participate. And when it was done, Mr. Eric gave her some encouragement to come back and bring a friend. She did.

The next week was better and the third week, they kicked the parents out of the room and it was even better yet. She was inspired. She sang all the time and we all got to know her songs. But there was nothing like seeing them performed. This is her favorite song from the performance. Night of Silence.

Night of Silence performed by the Tuscarawas Philharmonic Orchestra featuring the Children's Chorus (and Lucy!) and Ronald Barkett

I cried. It was just so beautiful.

When I picked her up after the show, the rehearsal room was electric. The kids were so enlivened. They all knew they’d done something very special. It was amazing. I was grateful that she could be a part of it.

Lucy, Eric Benjamin, and Kaitlyn

Julia sat next to me at Lucy’s performance. She was excited to see the orchestra perform. She joined the band this year and has just begun to feel what it’s like to play with a group. She’s playing drums and had her first concert on Sunday.

Julia plays the drum in the sixth grade band

This is her favorite song from her performance. Jolly Old Saint Nicholas. She played the bass drum for this one.

Julia plays Jolly Old Saint Nicholas with the sixth grade band

She told me she’d liked to learn to play an instrument from every instrument family.

My little drummer girl

She’s on her way.

Older posts

© 2017 My Mommy's Place

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑