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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Matthew the Maestro Pt. 2

Matthew the Maestro Pt 2 My son, Matthew, is doing an incredible job learning the piano.  And yes, so is my daughter, Sarah, and my grandson, Glen.  But this post will be about Matthew, as I like to praise each of my children individually and on their own merits, because each are so special to me and boy do they know it.  Spoiled kids.  But hey, if you can't spoil your own babies, who can you spoil, right?  I do try to keep balance, though.  "Try" being the operative word here.

P1000906.JPG So, let's talk about Matthew and his piano lesson.  He wanted me to sit in on his last lesson, and so I did.  All children want their parent's approval, validation, and praise, and I am more than willing to offer it up.  Especially when they have earned it.  And Matthew has definitely earned it.

P1000908.JPG It wasn't always this easy to get him to sit at the piano and practice, or to pick up his theory book and study it so intently, but for whatever reason, something clicked about 2 months ago and now it is full speed ahead on the keyboard.  What glorious music fills my home!  I love it, love it, love it!

P1000909.JPG Matthew is a good listener too, and he also does well with his schoolwork.  However, and yes, there is a "however," when it comes to mathematics, he shuts down.  I homeschool all my children, so some subjects can be challenging.  Interesting how it is different subjects for different children.  Still, Matthew listens and tries really hard, and if he isn't "perfect" he gets really upset with himself.  Sometimes a little too upset.  Nobody, especially an 11 year old boy, should expect perfection; and, although I tell him this often, he tries his best to be his very best.   I just wish he wouldn't be so hard on himself.

P1000910.JPG See that hand up by his head?  He's in deep thought.  It is so quiet in the music studio that you could hear a pin drop, and Tango, the resident dog, sniff your shoes.  See Claire?  That is Claire Ritter - Music teacher connoisseur,  and extraordinary jazz musician, recording artist, and composer, in her own right.  Go here to see her website and listen to her incredible music compositions.  You won't be disappointed.  She is amazing.

P1000915.JPG Which might explain, too, why my children are so amazing playing the piano.  Claire has a tremendous ability to draw them in and grab their attention.  She encourages them, praises them, and yes, she even corrects them when they flub up.  My kids think she is the coolest.  She even has a set of drums and an electric keyboard that she hooks up and uses to accompany them on their pieces.  Yeap, Claire is pretty amazing, and thanks to her time, expertise, and talent, my Matthew is an extraordinary pianist and I am so proud of him I could burst.  I think I'll burst now.  Okay, I bursted, and Matthew got his cheeks pinched (again), and his forehead kissed (again), and hugged till he couldn't breathe (again).  I do so enjoy embarrassing him.  Hey!  That's my job!

P1000916.JPG And as we were leaving, Tango followed us out the door because she wanted to make sure we made it safely to our car, but first, we had to pet her and let her back inside - it was way too hot out there.  She is such a good doobie.

P1000917.JPG And so, as we were leaving, Glen pointed out to Matthew that his lesson was outstanding, and that his music was over-the-top glorious, and that he will go home now, take Matthew's piano books, and try to do the same thing (gotta keep a good healthy competition going on here).  So, Matthew scratches his head and says "Mom, do you think I did okay today?"  And I will look at him with adoring eyes and say "Matthew, you were the best.  I am so proud of you I think I'll pinch those perfect pink cheeks some more. and kiss you some more."  Matthew's eyes get big and he says "Awww, Mom, Not Again!"



P1000919.JPG And so we drive home.  Top down, fresh air, enjoying this perfect day.

P1000922.JPGAnd of course, we don't forget to waive goodbye to Starchaser - the resident horse. 
"Bye Starchaser!  Stay Cool!"


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