Blogging about music, family life, the outdoors, unschooling and everything else

for more than a quarter century

Year: 2003

  • Christmas Preparations

    I’m feeling a fair bit better about what’s happening around here. We’ve had a bit more productive time, less sitting in front of the computer all day, less conflict over things like practising and tidying. Fiona has cut three premolars in the past couple of weeks, so neither of us are sleeping terribly well at […]

  • Unproductivity

    I’m feeling like we’re being very unproductive, so it’s definitely time to start observing and documenting what’s happening in a bit more detail. Right now the three kids are improvising together on the piano. Sophie’s got a bass vamp going, Erin is playing a chromatic sequence in the middle of the piano, and Noah is […]

  • Neopets

    Town day. Gymnastics and piano lessons with “Eric”, the substitute. Eric worked both kids a good bit harder than he had the first time they met. Good, productive lessons. We had extra time at lunch after grocery-shopping, so I read a chapter of “Eragon” aloud to the kid on a bench in the mall. We […]

  • Weekend in Kelowna

    Chuck had a medical conference in Kelowna (a small-to-medium-sized city) on Saturday and we decided to tag along. Originally we assumed it would be Christmas shopping weekend, but I worked really hard to simplify our Christmas gift-giving this year and am making almost everything and cutting back, so there was no shopping to do. We […]

  • Piano takeover

    Recently our home has been taken over by the piano. It has crept up on me but it’s quite astonishing, and is perhaps the most persuasive argument for a monolith of a real, acoustic piano rather than a more portable digital one. It’s always there, en route between the bathroom and the computer, between the […]

  • Snow

    Tuesday night was orchestra. Erin is playing very well now in the first violin section. It took her a while to feel comfortable there (she was a 2nd violin last year, a 3rd the year before) but now she’s got confidence and is playing nicely. Wednesday was violin lessons. I mentioned the difficulty I’ve been […]

  • Canadian Composers

    We had a Canadian Composers Workshop this past weekend and it went fine. Noah played very very well. In some ways he’s shining brighter than his ever-so-precocious sister these days. Erin played fine but Noah’s compositional skills and his cute extra-small size won a lot of hearts. (He’s not as small for his age as […]

  • Sleypeynbag

    Erin’s been wanting me to practice with her on violin the last couple of nights. She’s feeling really mired down in her violin study, and it’s really affecting her motivation. Last spring she discovered she could sight-read and play all of Suzuki Book 6, even though she was only technically “studying” the first couple of […]

  • School math

    Wednesday was violin lessons. I was so wrapped up in the fun of bookbinding that I lost track of time and we almost forgot to go! I’m hand-making some hardcover picture-books for Christmas and was having a delightful time seeing my first one take shape before my eyes. I also made some little “jelly-bean books” […]

  • More and more

    The more I write, the more I realize there is to write. Yesterday Noah was noodling around on the piano while Sophie was noodling on her violin in the other part of the house. Noah started playing the horn solo melody from the end of Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite, a haunting theme he’s played many times […]

  • Sophie’s Birthday

    Lately Erin, a horribly picky eater who says she’d like to be cook when she grows up (go figure… maybe she wants to develop new ways of putting cheese and bread and rice together?) has been doing lots more cooking. I was making baked beans the other day and doubled the amount of beans I […]

  • Erics

    The last week has felt rather unproductive but I’m sure some useful stuff has happened. We had a day or two of Hallowe’en costume preparations. I had great fun doing Dobby’s eyeballs. I had made a paper mache mask anchored on paper plates and bits of cardboard, and left two round holes for those “tennis-ball-like […]

  • Learning in the Flow

    Noah was using the text-to-speech synthesizer on one of our old programs (DK Children’s Encyclopedia) this morning, practising spelling that could be properly pronounced by the computer. He discovered the use of periods in creating sentence breaks. He wrote: “Age of Mythology is a game of heros and montsters. You build reinforsments. You create beasts.” […]

  • Nelson Day

    Nelson day. Sophie was right into gymnastics today… only hung back for a couple of minutes right at the start. I’ve never had a kid so young who partipicated so eagerly. Maybe we’re getting incrementally less introverted kids as we keep at this racket. She’s the youngest kid by a good 6 months and the […]

  • Life is Music

    Music composition is in high gear around here. Noah has two or three pieces on the go and Erin the same. They noodle around on the piano until they have something they think is worth keeping and then they play it for me to transcribe on the computer in Finale format. They’ve each got notebooks […]