Because “MOM” upside down is “WOW”

The following post came across our Facebook feed via a fellow mom (and current Simply Music family). It resonated with us, so we asked for permission to share it with you. Parenting is hard work. We appreciate the opportunity to be a part of your week– no matter what kind of week you’re having. We hope that in addition to connecting with your child during your weekly Kindermusik class, you’re also able to connect with other adults who support, sympathize, and laugh with you. Smile, Mama.  You’re doing a great job.

On Being a Mom …

by Jai Wallace Tracy (Notes) on Tuesday, March 19, 2013 at 3:37pm

Sometimes I think Facebook is the worst thing to have happened to a mom. Well, Facebook and smart phones.

Think about it. Because of these two inventions, you can now get a look at the life of every mom you call “friend.” AND it’s all delivered instantly right to your phone. Now moms have a front-row seat to all the cookie-baking and paint projects and plenty of time to judge their own mothering skills against such. We see the handmade paper chains decorating the Christmas tree across town, and suddenly our own Target ornaments seem way too trite. The next thing you know, we’re freaked out that our own kids are going to become resentful of the handmade ornament kids, join a ornament-hating gang, rob a Hallmark store and end up in jail serving 5 to 10. So Target mom says to ornament mom, “Why can’t you just take it down a notch????”

But it goes the other way, too. Ornament mom looks at Target mom with raised eyebrow and says, “Can’t you up your game just a bit?”

Ouch. How did we get here? Facebook? Smart phones? Maybe.

Before our lives became so easily promoted and quickly communicated, we were all in our homes doing our own thing. Coloring ornaments or opening a box. Baking cookies or opening a box. Doing life handmade or opening a box. And nobody knew, and really nobody cared. Because we were all making it work best way we knew how. Our kids were loved, and that was all that mattered.

Until we saw the way SHE was doing it. In color Instagram photos splayed across her timeline. And suddenly, what was right for us became less than. Or what was right for us became right for everyone. So our days become full of self-deprecating or self-righteous status updates as we searched for some sort of validation — something, ANYTHING — to let us know we’re doing ok.

Wait — maybe that’s it. Maybe I have it wrong. Could it be that social media and technology have just given voice to what we mommas have wondered all along — am I a good enough??? Well, I’m here to tell you. Yes, you are. You’re a good mom. Better, you’re a rockstar mom. How do I know? Because I know you.

Yes, you.

The one who feels guilty for going through the drive-thru for the third time this week. And you, the one who makes sure there are vegetables at every meal. And you, the one who buys birthday treats at the grocery store on the way to school. And you, the one who stayed up literally all night decorating birthday cookies. You for whom “art project” means markers (on a good day) and a coloring book. And you Pinterest addict whose kids are always covered in paint.

You are an amazing mother.

You’re crafty. You hate playdough. You serve chicken nuggets. You raise chickens. You read every food label. You serve artificially flavored and colored cereal for breakfast. You homeschool. You public school. You have spotless floors. You are trying even now to remember the last time you mopped. You work. You stay at home. You make beds. You make messes. You turn on Dora. You don’t own a television. You make stuff. You buy stuff.

You live in big houses and little house with lots of kids or one kid with dogs and cats and wooden toys and noisy toys and candy and fruit, and you drive mini vans and SUVs while wearing snot-stained sweats or wedge heels and you do it absolutely beautifully, and your children adore you because you were made to be their mom.

Yes, you. No one can do this thing better than you. Fight for that. Contend for it. Remember it on your worst days and your best days. And when you see HER doing her thing, high-five her. Thumbs up her. (Because trust me, she needs that today.) And when you give her props, do it without losing yourself. Without doubting yourself.

No one can do this better than you. No one.

So go ahead and post your picture of your kids eating hand-ground, organic beef burgers. And you post yours of your kids opening their Happy Meals. And I pledge look (with non-judgmental eyes) beyond the food to see the sweet, little face in the background.

And I promise I will smile and think, “That kid has an awesome mom.”

(Thanks to Kristen Ricker for sharing the post with us.)

In the Mood for Music

In our Kindermusik Village classes, we’ve been exploring major and minor keys. Music written in a major key is sometimes described as happy or upbeat while music written in a minor key can be sad or scary.  The notes used to create a song determine whether the key is major or minor.   We don’t explore these patterns in music to create a class full of tiny composers, but as children listen, their brains take in each one in a new way, helping their minds make more vital, neural connections, which is good for becoming a curious and logical learner.

But Kindermusik isn’t the only place where there is discussion of major and minor. In a recent NPR story, reporter Rob Kapilow spoke with NPR’s Melissa Block and asked, “Can music make you happy or sad (and vice versa)?”  What happens when a song written in a minor (sad) key is transposed to a major (happy) key? The result is often a song that songs nothing like the original.  Check out the full article here.

Oleg Berg, the musician featured in the story, has taken many popular songs and swapped their major or minor keys. Visit his YouTube page, MajorVsMinor to see the full selection (don’t miss Hey Jude by The Beatles, Beat It by Michael Jackson, Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana, and We Will Rock You by Queen).

Give them a listen with your child. Try finding a song he/she might be familiar with and listen to Berg’s version.  Does your child notice a difference?  Which does he/she prefer?

Here’s one to get you started.  Remember Final Countdown by Europe? What if  it had sounded like this:

Kindermusik Summer Session: NEW! (Even more fun added)

InJoy Music is excited to announce that it’s time to enroll for a completely redesigned summer experience.  You told us that you wanted to bring the whole family to one class (because older kids are out of school and want to have fun too).  We listened.  You told us that you needed flexible make up class options to accommodate your summer schedule.  We heard you.  You mentioned that you’d like summer camps to last just a bit longer. We’ve got that covered.

This summer, you’ll enjoy: 

  • NEW SCHEDULE: two, four-week sessions! Enroll for one or both! Enjoy unlimited makeup classes!
  • NEW themes: Up in the Sky (June) and Down on the Ground (July)
  • NEW digital home materials!
  • NEW summer class format: pick the time and day that fits your schedule. All children, ages 0-7, are welcome in every class! Siblings under 6 months attend free!
Enrollment opens to our current families March 25. 
Watch for more information in class this week!
(Not enrolled yet? Don’t worry.  Enrollment will open for you soon.)