Thursday, December 30, 2010

As Promised

So this time last year I was seriously thinking that I would read all of Dickens in the year 2010. A friend even offered to read them with me and we got going pretty good I thought. But I soon realized that I wanted to read/research Dickens more than I wanted to do school work and that there really wasn't enough time for both. I don't like to admit it, but Dickens isn't something I can read for fun before bed. I need a less wordy companion for that, and when school is on I don't have time for much other reading. Lesson learned.
Sort of.
(I love that the program for this blog doesn't have grammar editing, I hate being told how many times I write a fragment! grrrr.)
This semester I will have no music classes. No piano lessons. I will be in choir once a week and attending recitals and convo's, but not studying music (Dr. Webb would not agree, choir is studying music...and he's right, but still...). This past semester I had 20th century music literature. It was a great class. We were required to do a listening log. I think mine was abysmal, but that is beside the point. I had done this in one other music lit class with the same professor and enjoyed it, I tried, that first time, to use it to listen to music I would not normally listen to. I listen to a variety of classical music for pleasure and must admit to a certain amount of complacency. Don't get me wrong, I do have a tendency to analyse what I'm listening to more often than not, even the pop stuff I enjoy, but when listening to instrumental music, or art music (I prefer this term), I have a definite bias. Piano, piano, piano, and yes, some more piano. Symphonies and concertos are in there too, but mostly solo piano music, and even the non keyboard art music CD's I own are composers most famous for their piano music.
This is not necessarily a bad thing, if I were interested in being some sort of piano repertoire expert, or wanted to only ever be a casual listener. However, I have higher aspirations, as always. So, rather than set myself up for shame thinking I'll stick with academic extra curricular activity for a year, I'm just going to try for a semester. I want to keep my finger in it so to speak. I have no idea what the future holds. Applications have been submitted, and fingers are crossed, but who knows? I may graduate this spring and need to find a job at Price Cutter. I may be accepted to grad school in another state, I may stay at MSU. Any of those things will be fine. But one thing I do know is that I want to continue to study music my whole life. So I want to develop a habit.
To that end I am going to start a listening log right here. Once a week, usually on Sunday morning, as that was the time I sent aside this past semester to work on grad app stuff and it didn't cut into other studies much, I will post the piece of music and what I find out about it. I'll do what I can to keep it on the level, meaning I will not be likely to ever cite Wikipedia. Rather, I will use the resources I've learned about in class and have at my disposal as a student. I'm not going to set up any kind of chronology or plan. In fact, if you are still reading this and would like to know more about a piece of music, any music, comment and let me know what it is, I might use that for an entry.
When I can I will include a link to the music, or perhaps find a way to upload mp3's from my computer.
That will be all for now.

Monday, December 27, 2010


Well, they are in reverse somehow, but above are some of the better ones of the pictures I took of the eclipse a week ago. It was chilly, but I wore my wool cape and slippers and sat on the bench my husband had made and enjoyed the show. This is at least the second eclipse I've seen, the first was when I was 12, or was it 13? Maybe younger, and it was my birthday.... anyway,we went to the outdoor theater in St. Louis to see Debbie Reynolds in the Unsinkable Molly Brown and she actually stopped the show to have the audience turn around and watch the eclipse! I'll never forget it! This time it happened on my niece's birthday! The winter solstice, Dec. 21, Iris is 6 now, absolutely crazy how fast those kids are growing! I'm so proud of them!
Shameless plug: I've added a new blog to the list on the right--> Abby is Melting, my cousin has begun a powerful journey and is sharing it with the world. I'm so proud of her, and inspired by her.
Soon, I will be writing about two things which I intend to do with this blog over the next few weeks. But for now, I must go to the library.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

More to do...

Well another semester is over! I did pretty well, five A's, not too shabby I guess. Also got my sis' family Christmas in the mail in time to reach them for the holidays!! Thanks very much to my husband, who is always helpful and easily keeps me motivated and on track. I've been sewing and crafting and baking up a storm this week, and there is still more to do.....

Monday, December 6, 2010

Colored Glass

There are a plethora of smalls ways I try to be like her.
Seeing the beauty in the simplicity of colored glass vessels,
Light shining through them, their shape distorting the images seen through them,
These are simple pleasures, simple beauties.
I miss her so much, I have missed her for so long.
Knowing that I will now always miss her
Is sometimes too much to bear.
So I will always have stories for the children,
Always have something for them when they or I visit.
I will always wonder at the sunlight reflecting on frost, snow and ice.
The birds will always captivate my attention and cause me wonder.
My scarf drawer will always be full and available.
I will make bad puns shamelessly.
I will appreciate good fashion sense and try to find my own.
I will never shy away from wearing a hat,
and I will never underestimate the value of a good belt.
Kindness and generosity will always be my intention.
And I will always choose to forgive, I will always choose to love.