Tuesday, June 27, 2006

maya's first road trip

Tomorrow morning, I will leave town with my parents (something I've done countless times before)....and my daughter (something I've never done before). This will be Maya's very first long trip.
She's very excited about it.

We're transporting a piano to 'casacommunitas' (my brother's house in Canton, Ohio).

It is the piano that first taught me to make and love music. My brothers and I grew up listening to our mother's unmistakeable style of arranging hymns on this piano. Falling asleep to her 'sweeping glissandos.' Soon the piano will be at Andy's house for his family to enjoy it's music as he did.... (an excerpt from his mother's day post a few years ago)...

"Lying in bed with the lights out and down the long hallway of the ranch house echo the gentle fingers of my mother playing and playing and playing the piano. Sometimes she would be practicing a particularly troublesome phrase, more often --just playing. Laying there hovering just above sleep I would feel profoundly that the music was a kind of visceral fabric that bound my brothers and sister and father together throughout the otherwise quiet house in the rhythms, the melodies, the countermelodies and always, the sweeping glissandos.

My mom drags her finger up the keyboard, but then slows each of the last notes to one by one keys at the top of the scale and just before the next musical phrase starts there is the slightest of pauses, too brief to fit all of these words into, but long enough that your soul starts to yearn expectantly toward the resolution of the chord, the forward motion of the music, the next great possibility."

I can't wait to hug my Jaelyn and Addison and see them love their new cousin, Maya.

Ryan is coming too, but he can't leave until Thursday after work. We are going to my beautiful friend Al's wedding. (An early wedding rehearsal being the reason that Maya and I are tagging along with my parents on wednesday.) I can't wait to dance to the music of the jazz trio at the reception...

and to be with all of them again...

I miss my friends!

Friday, June 23, 2006

Back to work....kind of

After almost two months away from students, I got to see some of 'my kids!' It wasn't really like work though. We had a lot of fun spending our mornings together this week...making music, working hard. But I'm pretty sure they came for the swimming. Especially that one on the right that couldn't even wait until we were done taking pictures! :)

This week was the fifth annual Summer Strings Clinic. I first started the tradition while I was in high school...then I took a few years off as a college student and as a newlywed. Some of my first Strings Clinic students graduated from high school this year.
In fact, you might recognize some of these little girls...

Left to right: (back row) me--the young teacher :), Hilary Jones, Amanda Nousain, Christy VanAndel, Katie McDonald, (front row) Leanne Enck, Elaina Evans, Stephanie and Laura Kramer.
(If any of you happen to read this) Girls, I am so amazed at the beautiful, talented, and intelligent women that you have become. It is fun to watch you grow up.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

For his first Father's Day present, Ryan told me that he wanted a new suit...navy blue pinstripe. So, when we finally had a day without a million commitments, we drove to Grand Rapids to hunt for the perfect suit. But on the way to the mall, Ryan suggested a spontanious detour to the Frederick Meijer Gardens.

The Meijer gardens were breathtaking...hundreds, maybe thousands of complex, fragile plants and trees from all over the world growing inside of an enormous glass greenhouse. Among the flowers, there were other masterpieces: sculptures by Degas, Rodin, an artist's recreation of Davinci's horse, and other contemporary pieces. It was an amazing collection of beautiful work.

My grandmother Linda was a gardener. The careful, daily tending and nurturing was a natural part of who she was. She sketched detailed maps of her gardens...labelling each plant and flower. I like to think that I could someday create something that beautiful and alive. I do share many of her traits. Her long thin fingers and toes. Her unruly eyebrows. A bit of her eccentricity. Her love for books, art, shopping, carefully wrapped gifts, Les Cheneaux". But her gardener's blood does not flow through my veins. I lack the dilligence and patience it requires. But I love to enjoy the work of those who have this gift. A walk in any garden inspires me to pay more attention to detail, to think about the complexity of creation, to actually water the few tropical plants in my living room (that I usually allow to slowly die of thirst and neglect).

Maybe someday Maya will learn to love and care for flowers like her great grandmother.
She certainly enjoyed her first day at the gardens.

...we did find a suit. And of course, Ryan looks amazing in it. Maybe someday I'll post a picture of my handsome husband in his Father's Day present from me.

But Maya got him the present he really wanted. A remote control airplane.