Leaving a legacy 2

I absolutely love when I walk into my classroom at the beginning of the day to my eager strolling strings students! This group of students are my “busy bees” of all the orchestras I have. This is my auditioned 7th/8th Grade orchestra that meets before school every single day! They are dedicated, passionate, and excited about the music we are creating and learning new techniques. They are the students who have many times given me goosebumps listening to the beautiful music they are creating, through working together, being focused, engaged and truly listening to each part.

Tomorrow is solo/ensemble contest for middle school students in orchestra and band and of course I am going a little crazy. My thoughts this week have been ” Do I have all of the books for the judges? Did I write in all the measure numbers for the pieces? Do I have all the accompaniment parts? Did I write out the Ensemble forms? … Etc.  As I was going about talking with students about their pieces, giving some of them the last little “nugget” of advise I could, I hear the students in strolling strings say ” Let’s play something… how bout Beauty and the Beast?… Sounds good… I’ll conduct ( says one of my 2nd violin girls)…”


It was at that point that nothing else mattered. I stopped what I was doing and just listened. Those moments are the best and you have to take them in…. they come every once in a while, but they are rare gems. Now my strolling strings love to play, so this has happened a little more than some of my normal classes, but today I stepped back from critiquing every little note that was wrong or rhythm and listened to the overall group as they played with beauty and elegance.

Things like that get me excited about my job and what I am teaching! I know that it is making a difference in the lives of my kids… I may never know the exact impact, but I know that I am here for a reason… I am where I am supposed to be.

I am extremely proud of these students. They have worked so hard this year. The Strolling Strings were invited to perform the pre-concert music for the Springfield Symphony in October, where they received so many compliments about their performances. I received numerous emails and text messages from my symphony friends congratulating me on my groups sound and their performance. Some people even thought my students were high school students!

We do a tour of Springfield in December and usually perform at 2-3 retirement communities and Hyvee for all the shoppers. Here are a couple pics from this year!


kids on bus

We also got invited to perform at Barnes and Noble last year and this year! Here is a pic of my students who performed this year!

barnes and noble


Now the weekend has begun and I started the night off by going to see the talented students of Carver Middle School perform in their opening night of “Sleeping Beauty and the Beast.” It was hilarious!!! Kelsey O’dell, Shelly Green, and Carla House did a fabulous job of directing the students. Bravo!!!!  I had 11 of my orchestra students in the play and wanted to do something special for them, so I got them all carnations! ( The boys got 1 white carnation and the girls got 1 pink carnation).  I also wanted to get the teachers involved some flowers- they have worked really hard for tonight’s performance and I wanted them to know that they were appreciated! I had a super hard time trying to find the right flowers… I mean there are so many choices…


I finally picked out my flowers… and 20 min later they were all wrapped up and ready to go! It took a while to get them all wrapped, but they looked so nice afterwards, it was worth it. As I walked out of HyVee a guy asked… ” Got enough flowers?” … it definitely made me laugh.

all set

The Cast and Crew… Bravo to everyone involved!!! It was a super funny show!

the playThen Dave and I had a Date night to Longhorn Steak house using a gift card my mom and dad sent us… Thanks Mom and Dad!!!

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Had a great Friday night! Hope yours was just as amazing!!!!

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