A Perfectly Lazy Labor Day

Lazy Labor Day

I’d like to tell you I’ve spent this beautiful holiday doing all kinds of productive things, but that is just not the case! Luckily I got enough done on Friday that I can allow myself a day of pure enjoyment.

I started the day by picking up my new keyboard (yes, I finally found it and will give you the full scoop later this week), followed by a stop at Starbucks. I have to admit, it felt good to roll down the windows, open the sunroof, and sip my coffee. No air conditioning needed today.

I had lunch with one of my best and oldest friends, and now I’m getting ready to spend the rest of the afternoon by the pool. And what would this holiday be without a cookout (courtesy of my parents)?

Labor Day, for me, is a signal that summer as we know it is ending. That’s never an easy pill to swallow, which is why I’m filling it with things that make me very happy. Hope you’re doing the same!


Happy 4th of July!

Happy 4th of July

What’s more appropriate for the 4th of July weekend than a baseball game with your family?  That’s exactly what I did yesterday.  And even though the Rockies — the home team — lost, it was a perfectly patriotic day.

Our last day in Denver will be spent by the pool, eating Chick-Fil-A (!), and soaking up a few more hours with the family before we head back to Illinois.

I hope you enjoy the holiday! Have fun, be safe, and come back here tomorrow for a brand new week of the regular Listen & Learn fare.

Hey, Hey…It’s My Birthday!

Rachel's 28th BirthdayAs a birthday present to myself, I’m taking a break from the usual “Sunday Singalong” video — mainly because I haven’t had a chance to make one this week!  After wrapping up my last day of work on Thursday, doing double duty as maid of honor and vocalist in a wedding on Friday, and attending another wedding yesterday, I think I deserve a day to just chill with my friends and family.

This is the third birthday I’ve celebrated at Listen & Learn, which I find incredibly hard to believe!  I’ve written about turning 26, turning 27, and now the big 2-8. It’s true what they say…time flies when you’re having fun.  This year is going to be an exciting one filled with lots of new adventures, but before I get to those, here a few highlights from my 27th year:

  • Releasing my first studio album
  • Taking a 2nd anniversary trip to Chicago
  • Becoming an internship supervisor
  • Celebrating my brother’s wedding
  • Presenting my first CMTE at AMTA National Conference
  • Hosting my family on Christmas for the first time
  • Becoming self-employed and expanding my business

There are lots more highlights I could list, but I’m out of time!  My family and friends are getting together for an afternoon birthday celebration in just a little bit.  I’ll report back at to whether or not I receive the items on my birthday wish list, though all I really care about is being with the people I love :) Happy Sunday to you, whether or not it’s your birthday!

Friday Fave: My Best Friend’s Wedding

My Best Friend's Wedding

My best friend Katie is getting married tonight! I am so excited to be her maid of honor, just like she was for me in my Friday evening wedding almost three years ago (as pictured above).

Not only do I have the responsibilities that go along with being maid of honor (holding the rings, giving a toast, corralling the dress, etc.) but I’m also singing at the ceremony. My friend Ryan, who is an amazing guitarist with whom I’ll be gigging this summer, is going to accompany me.

Last year was the summer of wedding singing — I think I sang at 5 of them — but this year, Katie’s is the only one. But that doesn’t mean I have a shortage of weddings to attend! In fact, Zach’s best friend James is getting married tomorrow. And then two weeks from now he’s in another wedding in Chicago, and the list goes on and on.

Katie and Justin have been together for almost 10 years, so I’ve been waiting for this day for a while now :) It should be a perfect day and evening. I hope you have fun plans for this beautiful Friday, too!

Memorial Day is For…

Memorial Day

…honoring those who have served our country.


Family Time

…spending time with the ones we love.


Grilling Out

…yummy food on the grill.


Summer Sun

…kicking off the summer!


I hope you’re lucky enough to have as beautiful weather as I do on this Memorial Day.  I’m getting ready to take my dog for a walk, and then it’s off to my parents’ pool (my summer hangout) for some swimming and a cookout.  Talk about the perfect day.  Enjoy the holiday, and I’ll see you back here tomorrow!

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