Monday, September 21, 2009

Is there anything worse?

I'm worried. And a slight bit fearful. We may end up damaged for life.


I'm afraid for my ears and for my sanity.

I don't know if there is anything worse........but I'm about to find out just how bad 'bad' can be.

It turns out that in third grade one can take up a strings instrument.

So this weekend I had the lovely experience of going to the Music store and picking out a Viola with LG.

He is BEYOND excited. And today is the first class.

He went forth this morning laden not only with the usual backpack and lunch box but also with his little viola, in its case, and a canvas bag with the books and various accessories.

I can only hope that his joyful anticipation hasn't been completely deflated by the time school is over today. We've had several discussions about how difficult it can be to learn an instrument but we've also talked about how capable he is and what perseverance really means.

I'm excited for him, but lets be honest, I'm also trepidatious of the idea of sitting through his home practices. Each night.

Night after night after night after night........

You get the idea right?

Then I try to make myself feel better and think "how bad can it be? really?"

Anyone have any thoughts on that?

I have been thinking that maybe I can listen to him practice and sketch at the same time, its doubtful I'd be able to sit and read while I listen to him practice, but maybe sketching would work. I'm not sure I have to actually WATCH him practice, right? Although he may have decidedly different views on the subject.

Guess I'll find out tonight!

Oh, one more thing I wanted to share. I have mentioned before how much I love language and words. My Mother and I were trying to grab a new word each week (or thereabouts) just for fun, but we kind of forgot and got off track. Well, someone at work was giving away a vocabulary 'kit' - I think it was an SAT primer - so I took it home and now we are learning a new word each week for my son (not that WE don't know the words, this is more for him).

He loves it!

So far these are the words he has picked at random out of the box (they are on small cards about the size of a standard business card):

  • brackish
  • paragon
  • vivacious
  • excoriate
  • rustic

Tonight we'll pick a new one.

Have a GREAT week all!



  1. LOL! Just keep a CD nearby of your favorite seasoned viola player. Play that for inspiration and hope when it's, sounding hopeless.

    And maybe get a pair of ear plugs (wear your hair down so your son can't see them) and go about your day smiling :)

  2. I don't know if I can offer advice on the practice. But I can say that I lived through the drums ... and continue to live through them, for about 10 years now. They're set up in my living room! The joy that our children experience will get you through it. But I have to say that your post reminded me of when my sister was learning the violin ... until she fell off the monkey bars at school and broke her arm. It was peace to our ears!

  3. Oh my gosh Barabara!!! I will never complain, I will never broken bones here please! ;-) Drums, now that is something I can see my son getting into at a later date. . . I guess we need to be careful what we wish for.


  4. It will be okay! Wow...they offer stringed instrument lessons through his school? That's so cool. All Ben gets is the opportunity to be in the volunteer chorus, which he decided to do. Both of us being musicians, you'd think his dad and I would have already started him on something, but I think we are waiting for inspiration to strike :) I love viola...much more mellow than violin...tell him "nice choice" :)

  5. Ever been to Great vocab site with the added bonus of rice being donated in developing countries for your correct answers!

  6. Brings back memories. I played violin starting in 5th grade. I hope he likes it. I wish I hadn't given it up. As a reading tutor I love your idea of teaching him a new word daily. Great for his vocabulary!!

  7. I played violin in grade school up until high school. I gave it up because of other interests and lack of support at home. I finally picked it up again (I'm 40 something) and am taking private lessons. I've learned more through the private lessons than anything I had learned in my public school. I have two daughters, one that plays flute and guitar. I try to encourage her as much as possible to practice. Your sacrifice of peace will benefit them greatly.

  8. Oooh love the word learning - had to look up excoriate and have been enjoying the word today :)
    If its any consolation I learnt Trombone so not only my mother but all the neighbours got to share in the nightly torture, lol

  9. Hi all!

    Melissa #1 - yes, they offer strings in 3rd grade and then the remainder of the orchestra/band instruments starting in 4th. He gets pulled from other classes but its just once a week for 45 minutes. He has also decided to do chorus which starts next month I think. (add to that Cub Scouts this year, and something else...can't remember....ohhh, a leadership thing after school on Mondays - he's busy!)

    Mellisa - I am familiar with freerice, and I think its great to donate and its great to learn vocabulary - I just have a bit of an issue with the concept overall. Just donate already!!! lol

    Beads and Gayle - it does my heart good to hear others have survived! I actually took violin for at least a year, maybe longer....I can't remember all that much about it but I think I enjoyed it.

    Nicola - we are having a lot of fun with the words. Two nights ago we also began playing 'boggle' with him - are you familiar with it? Its a word game. He was back for more last night!