Play the music; Pause the memories...
Shep rarely sits still. If not for sleep he would keep going...and going. People have actually compared him to the Energizer Bunny. I live the exhaustive life of the mom of a movin' & groovin' busy body toddler. It's like he has a soundtrack playing in his head at all times telling him to seize the day; make the most of his moments. Who am I to stop him?
Enter the magic of music...Molly "Music" Mesic, that is. I added the "Music" to her name because she deserves it. I came across Molly while she was teaching a music class at Kidville. If you don't know Kidville, you should. They are a gym and creative enrichment studio with locations across the nation. Look 'em up -- the perfect place for keeping tots busy. Molly rocked her Kidville class and we got to talking. Next thing I know she was in my living room, then my backyard...then my living room again, performing her mix of original songs and kiddie classics with some Taylor Swift thrown in for good measure.
Interlude...this blog isn't just about supporting Indie musicians. It is about The Arts, specifically supporting local talent. No matter what town you live in, there are artists ready and willing to entertain, you just have to be open to exploring what your town has to offer.
If you live on planet earth and have a babe, chances are you have come across Kindie Rock -- music for the under 10 set. Playgroup members have a love affair with Music Together, and a host of other suburban and city offerings. Shep and I have been to all the classes around town including Music for Aardvarks, Wompy's, Pre-School of Rock, The list goes on.
Music Together definitely stands out. They have a real curriculum and because of that, they have perfected the science behind the bond connecting kids and music. As their website says, they bring harmony home. While I love what they stand for, in local artist Molly's music, Shep and I discovered what we were missing...unapologetic energy and a reason to really "rock out."
Berklee trained singer-songwriter, Montclair resident and new mom to baby Maisie, Molly told me (over the sounds of kiddie shakers) she loves playing music for kids because of their pure passion. "Kids react to music in an honest way. To play a child's favorite song who can't even speak yet, and watch them react with so many positive emotions, makes me truly fulfilled."
My mom-friend Katlin echoes this sentiment. She has drums all over her house. Baby Jack just learned to walk and he already has a mini piano and of course, he has maracas. One time we took a hour car ride and Katlin played Jack's favorite CD the whole way. She says she heard playing music helps early learning and is hoping to instill a love of music in her son. Many moms feel this way, me included. We want our kids to thrive and music is filled with strength and purpose.
As a new mom, there is a lot of talk of balance and focus...and maintaining harmony in one's home. All this chatter creates a lot of noise in my head. It can be tiring to keep up with.
Thus, I let Shep march to the beat of his own drum because I have always marched to my own melodies and rhythms. I often feel like I want us to stop every so often and slow down. But I am learning to let the music, and Shep, play on. We will keep tapping our toes during these mommy and me moments -- especially during these toddler times.
OK now go listen to this love song and let yourself smile. I don't care how old you are, sit back, relax and listen and smile.
*Molly Mesic is available for playgroups, private lessons and parties. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org -- tell her Allegra sent you*