Thursday, February 14, 2013

thursday thoughts: ritual & routine

Valentine's Day, another wonderful day!  JJ was so excited to see me when I picked her up today, and school was awesome with Singing Valentines and new feng-shui.  James made me a beautiful Valentine and yummy dinner, I visited the awesome Very Special Arts choir, who I will be guest conducting for a friend who's headed to Morocco next week.  Returned home for Nashville, snuggles, and too many Dove chocolates.

Nashville has become a ritual- Thursday evenings on Hulu, I look forward to living vicariously through beautiful country artists on my favorite show of the year.  It's produced by T. Bone Burnett, who has 40 years of experience making music for the likes of O Brother, Wherefore Art Though and Walk the Line.  Sort of a guilty pleasure, but the music and style are so great!

Rituals and routines are going to turn my life around.  Apparently I've been saying this for years, but it's hard work for what my dad call "creative types" like me.  After the Sandy Hook shootings, I perused the twitter feed of their school principal Dawn Hochsprung.  December's affects my outlook on teaching and life, but I've found Dawn's bravery and pride in her school inspiring.  The last article Dawn retweeted, "Nine Ways Successful People Defeat Stress" brought up a point that's been simmering in my mind- rely on routines.  Avoid wasting energy on small details, like setting out clothes or packing a lunch, (skip trying on three outfits or the zoning out while cutting celery).

Over the past month or two, I've been trying to rewire my life to be more productive, to be the best me possible.  It's happening, gradually and surely!  Just yesterday, I rearranged the piano in my classroom so that my students look out the windows to the mountains while I rehearse them instead of at the Promethean board.  Part of their routine now will be stopping at the Promethean board for sight-reading or music examples, but moving on to the much more inspiring windows where we can make music.  All the students have noticed the difference.  Looking forward to beginning new music and new rituals in the choir room.

What are your favorite routines/rituals?  I have a cup of tea before bed and spray my face with lovely lavendar spritzer (a gift from an even lovelier friend).  Tonight, I played music, which I'm hoping to make part of the routine.  "Turn Me On", for my husband who is busy answering emails for his two jobs.  Think I'll actually hit the hay in time for my self-imposed 10-6 bedtime.  xoxoxxoo

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