I’ve been yapping on and on about my new digital songbook collection, Spring Into Summer, yet I’ve completely neglected to share the title song here on the blog. I wrote it just off the heels of our final winter snowstorm (I lost count back in January), when spring and summer seemed like a very distant ray of sun in a frozen tundra. I shudder at the memory.
I wanted to write a song that covered both seasons, since lots of kiddos consider the end of the school year to be summer — even though it doesn’t technically begin until the end of June. In all honesty, I’m with them! My birthday is on June 5th, and I always think of that as the kickoff to my favorite season.
What song(s) do you sing as the seasons change and school comes to an end? And on that topic, can you even believe that there are mere days left until summer break? Just about all of my students have a countdown going, and they are sure to update me every time I see them. Not that they are keeping track or anything!
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It just doesn’t seem right to be singing about frozen fractals when it’s 80 degrees out. But that didn’t stop the melodious strains of “Let It Go” from flowing out of my fingertips today…multiple times.
Don’t get me wrong: I love the movie Frozen and just about every song in it. I am thrilled that so many of my students love these songs, too; we’ve enjoyed singing/playing/piggybacking them for the last six months. But I know it’s time to move on when Parker’s babysitters (who are within earshot of my studio) ask how in the world I’m not tired of Frozen music yet.
I’m a firm believer in repetition, and I don’t tire of songs very easily. I’m happy to ride the wave of whatever music is most popular with my students at the moment. We’ve been through phases where all we did was Wicked, Adelle, Les Miserables, “Happy” — really, I could go on and on with this list. Frozen, however, will go down in the record books as THE longest phase yet.
I’m really proud of my students for our work with these songs in both music therapy and lessons, but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t relieved that I’ll have a break from them (the songs, not my students!) when the spring session ends in a little over a week. Especially “Let It Go”. The one that haunts my dreams at night.
This year, for the first time ever, I scheduled a break halfway through my afternoon/evening of work. The picture above illustrates how I’ve spent those 15 minutes every day since September — up until today. This week, my trusty Medela pump is going into storage until my next trip down baby lane.
Since Parker will be a year old in just a few weeks, we’re beginning the transition from breastmilk to whole cow’s milk. The bottle he gets while I’m working is the first step in the process, and I’ll gradually be replacing feedings up until his birthday.
I have been extremely lucky to spend so much time with my son during the first year of his life, which has definitely contributed to our success in breastfeeding. I know that lots of mamas pump multiple times a day at work, and I have an insane amount of respect for them; just once per workday (and then again before I went to bed) was enough for me.
There are only two weeks left in my spring session, which means I have ten 15-minute breaks to fill up now that I’m no longer pumping. Oh, the possibilities! I know many of you can relate to the sacredness of “me” time, even in the shortest of intervals :)
For more mama moments and Parker updates (including an abundance of adorable photos and videos), check out my family blog, www.therambachs.com.
Last winter, back when my baby was still incubating and I had all the time in the world, I launched an early childhood class based on my Listen & Learn song collection. The class was SO much fun and I loved every second of it, but unfortunately I haven’t had the chance to offer another session…until now.
This time around, I’m teaming up with my colleague and fellow music therapist Katey Kratz to offer not one, but TWO classes. I’ll lead the 6-18 month class, and then Katey will lead the 18 month-3 year old class later that morning. Both classes are designed to instill and foster a love of music as well as develop basic skills for both musical growth and daily life.
The summer session of Listen & Learn for Little Ones will begin on Tuesday, July 1st and run for five weeks. Each class is 45 minutes in length, and the total cost of the session is $45 (that’s less than $10 per class).
Katey and I are super excited about our class location: Capital City Music (formerly Samuel Music) right near my studio on the west side of Springfield. There will be plenty of room for kiddos and their caregivers to spread out, play instruments, and move to the music.
The full scoop can be found right here. Or if you’re local to Springfield and ready to register, go for it. It’s going to be an awesome summer filled with two of my very favorite things in the world — music and little ones!
Had Parker been born just 3 weeks earlier, I would have celebrated my first Mother’s Day last year. But instead, I celebrated being an almost-mama; one of my last quiet, lazy Sundays for a long, long time.
This year was quite another story. Life as Parker’s mom is anything but quiet and lazy, and Mother’s Day was no exception. Zach surprised me with a family weekend in St. Louis, so we headed down on Saturday. Our day started at the St. Louis Zoo with thousands of other families who had the same idea. It was crowded, but we had so much fun introducing Parker to all the animals. He loved them all, but his favorites by far were the birds. Go figure!
After a few hours at the zoo, all three of us were ready for a relaxing, low-key afternoon. We wanted to take full advantage of the gorgeous weather, so we headed to the botanical gardens. I really could have spent the entire day there! (And we almost had no choice — Zach lost his keys and we spent the last half hour tracing our steps with no luck. Fortunately, someone turned them in to the front desk.)
Our next stop was the hotel, where we rested for a few minutes before getting ready for dinner. Zach’s sister suggested we try Bailey’s Range, which was within walking distance of where we were staying downtown at the Hyatt. All I can say is OMG. Our dinner was amazing, and I haven’t stopped daydreaming about it since! Parker was an angel all the way through our meal, and then he fell asleep just in time for dessert. Perfection.
We headed back to the hotel after dinner and went to bed early. The next morning, we had a yummy breakfast at the Hyatt before hitting the road back to Springfield. We spent Sunday doing family stuff and getting more fresh air before I taught my Church Mice music class, and then had dinner at Zach’s parents’ house.
It was a nearly perfect first Mother’s Day weekend. The only thing that could have made it better would have been getting to spend part of it with my own mom, but she was in Phoenix meeting my new nephew, Alec. Luckily she lives just down the street and I see her all the time :)
One more little surprise from Zach: this adorable video he put together and played for me on Mother’s Day. It made me cry and feel SO incredibly blessed to be the mother of the most amazing little boy.