SING TO ME!

SELL TO ME!!

Laurie Gould: Don

WRITE TO ME!!!

Send me emails when there are new songs or blog posts!

FOLLOW ME!!!!

Facebook -- https://www.facebook.com/Midlifemomsongs Twitter -- https://twitter.com/midlifemomsongs YouTube -- http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjzbTLmufvyK0DywNOTNB3w

GIVE ME A MUSICAL MAMMOGRAM!!!!

Me and Mr. Pavlov

Anyone who has tried to write knows how very easy it is not to.  I do love writing this blog, but getting down to it can be a challenge. There are so many other more compelling activities!  Checking my email.  Ironing the kitchen towels.  Whipping up a pan of brownies.  Eating up a pan of brownies.

To counteract my natural tendency to do anything but write, I try to structure routines that might eventually make writing almost automatic.  In particular, I do my best to write while I am sitting at a certain downtown Boston coffee shop which I frequent on Saturday afternoons, while I am waiting for my daughter to finish her clarinet lesson at Symphony Hall down the street. 

You have surely heard of the great Russian psychologist Ivan Pavlov and his seminal work on the "conditioned response."  Ring a bell each time a dog is fed, and eventually the bell alone, absent the food, will be enough to provoke the dog to salivate.  This is my plan for Saturdays at the Pavement Coffee Shop:  eventually the simple act of walking through the door will provoke the conditioned reflex:   MUST.....WRITE....BLOG!

Packing the farm

Last night I got into my husband's car and was assaulted by a swarm of fruitflies and the unmistakable odor of fermentation.  Steve acknowledged that matters were amiss:  "There's gotta be something under one of the seats; but I looked and I couldn't find it."

Fortunately I have been practicing yoga recently, and by breathing deeply from my belly and finding Threading the Needle pose I was able to contort my arm under the front seat to extract an unspeakably icky something in an advanced stage of decay. 

I'm pretty sure that it was one of these lovely Italian prune plums that Steve bought at the farmers' market near his office:

You Gotta Ac-Cent-uate the Negative

The week after Labor Day is always a wistful one, as we say goodbye to summer's leisure and get back to the business of business and school.   This year it was a particularly wistful week for me, since this is my last year of having a school-aged person living at home.  My younger child is a senior in high school, so I am less than a year away from an empty nest.   I'm sure that this next phase of my life will be full of adventure and freedom and opportunity, and I will embrace it with great enthusiasm when it comes.  But after nearly 23 years of being Mom first and foremost, this is a poignant moment indeed.

I have been doing lots of yoga and meditation over the past year; and if I have learned anything, it's that there is great strength to be found in living in the moment.   I can choose a constructive mindfulness rather than wallowing in anxiety about the future.  I need to focus on the present, to fully embrace the experience that I am having right now.

And so I am approaching this coming transition in a constructive, mindful way.   I am choosing to focus on the stuff I hate right now about having children at home, things in the now that I will not miss at ALL.

It's Fugue'in September!

Novelty Fugues are a genre that is somewhat limited in repertoire; but I have three of them on my new album.  And since it's the season for such things, here's one now, the first of the September Fugues--click on the link, then the "Play" arrow, to have a listen:

September Fugues:  On the Theme of Forms

Happy September!

To knit, or knot?

I am not very good at sitting around and doing nothing. 

And yet that was the top priority for a big chunk of the vacation I just took with my husband.   We rented a lovely cabin on a beautiful lake on Vancouver Island for four days, totally off the grid--no Internet, no cellphone reception, no civilization within easy reach.   "We will just sit and be and do nothing at all," my husband enthused as he finalized the arrangements on Air B&B.

Yes.  That is all very nice.   But if I'm doing to sit around and do nothing, I need something to do.  So in preparation for this trip, I went out and bought materials for a knitting project.    

This is what my sweater will look like when it is done:

 

HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA

No, it won't look anything like that.   My sweaters always come out somewhat mis-shapen; they have that unmistakable look that my friend Jennifer describes as "made at home with loving hands."  Here's one:

What I'm Not Doing at the AIrport

I'm at the airport, ready for my flight home.  And I am surprised to see that at least so far, it is on time.

I've had a lot of business travel lately; this is my eighth flight in the past eight weeks.   If this one leaves on schedule, it will be only the second of those eight flights to do so. 

But think of all the quality airport time I'll be missing!   I won't be doing any impulse shopping at the BestBuy kiosk:

 

I won't have time to upgrade my headphones--and I know these are WAY better than mine:

Nor to buy one of these things for the sole purpose of figuring out what the hell it does:

No time to slam back a few burgers here!

Nor beers, here:

If I were to spend a few hours at the Columbus International Airport, I would surely emerge on a very different spiritual plane:

Let me make it very clear to the good proprietors of the Terminal C newsstand that I am deeply grateful for your concern for my immortal soul.  Thanks, guys!  But I have no time for salvation today:  I'm going HOME, and on time!

In the Newark airport one evening last month, I had extensive leisure to contemplate a different kind of book cover:

This tomb was being devoured quite voraciously by the woman sitting opposite me, waiting for the same Boston-bound flight, delayed more than three hours (United; mechanical difficulty).   Contemplating this title naturally raised a number of questions, principal among them:

  • Are we talking really new?  Or just new-to-me (i.e., used)?
  • What would I do with the old husband?
  • Which Friday?

Tonight, alas, there will be no time to contemplate such matters.

I will not, alas, be buying one of these:

Nor one of these:

Although you have to admit that $8.88 is a damn good deal.

I will not have time to wonder what in God's name has happened to the eyes of Beanie Babies:

The Beanie Babies of my younger days had beady little eyes, as befits a stuffed animal.  These things look like they're possessed.   If I had one in my room when the lights went out I would need to stuff it in a drawer.

But no worries about creepy Beanie Babies disturbing my slumber!   I have no time to purchase such things today.   My flight is on time, at least for now, and I am heading home.  Where I will have a joyful reunion with my Old Husband. 

Unless, of course, it's Friday.....

 

 

Wrong number; not sorry at all

It is a normal weekday afternoon, and I am working away at whatever it is I do during the working day, when the phone rings and I answer.

 

"This is Sylvia," the caller announces.  "And I am coming to the party."

To market, to market....

My new album, "Don't Check the Box!," has been out on the streets for about a week, and so far it has been getting a great deal of attention.

Most of the attention has been from my husband, who kept tripping over the boxes of CDs when they were in our front hall.  Now that he has carried them up to my third-floor office, most of the attention has been coming from me (as I try not to trip), although I haven't paid enough attention to actually figure out where I might put the damn boxes away.

 

The Missing Instructions

When I first had children I read lots of parenting books:  books about child development, books about child health, books about how to get your child to sleep through the night, books about why you shouldn't even try to get your child to sleep through the night.  Eventually I stopped reading parenting books, first, because I realized that they were just making me anxious and second, because there are way more interesting things to read.

But ignoring the instruction manual has its cost.   Sometimes it seems that every single mom but me knows exactly what she's supposed to do.   It would have helped twenty years ago, for example, had I read the chapter stating that children are required to bring valentines to preschool for the other (resolutely pre-literate) 2-year-olds.   Flubbed that one.   I also failed to take the mandatory series of first-day-of-school pictures, wherein your child, proving herself to be taller than she'd been the previous year, stands grinning on the front porch, proudly modeling her new backpack.  Oops.

22.5 years later, I am still screwing up the details.  The latest chapter of my parental incompetence involves my life as the parent of a teenage musician. 

Ms. Know-it-all

I am in the garden center, trying not to be an asshole.

RSS feed