Saturday, December 22, 2012

"The Elephant Diet" Day # 15

In addition to my normal Saturday, groceries, banking, etc., I threw in a couple of hours rehearsal with the choir at the church where I work. What fun to sing with 40 other voices! I can't wait until tomorrow when we share the music with others.

Tonight I made mushroom soup for Christmas Eve and applesauce cake in jars...makes a nice gift or dessert in a hurry.

Now for the elephant diet.....I didn't get a lot accomplished on that end, but I did figure out how to add a subscribe button to the blog so you and others can sign up to automatically receive the blog in your email box every time I blog.

I'm sure this seems small to seasoned bloggers, but since I still struggle to keep up with all the technology that's available to us, this was no small accomplishment for me.

So go ahead, celebrate this small accomplishment with me and try out the should be able to sign up for daily updates now.

That's going to have to be it for today. It's almost bed time and Tom and I have to taste test the applesauce cake and make sure it's good enough to give away.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

"The Elephant Diet" Day # 12

I'm so tired! I have to confess, I crashed a bit today. It's been so busy with concerts the past two nights in a row, working at the church, keeping up with home stuff and the Christmas project I'm blogging about.

I came home from working at the church and working out at the gym and my brain was so exhausted I didn't think I could carry on in any kind of creative venture today.

In spite of exhaustion, I did listen to some music that the orchestra conductor sent me and have been pondering how best to proceed with him. Do I have him listen to what I'm writing and see if he is inspired by it and can write orchestration for my songs for a live show? Or do I record the songs first and then come back to him with the finished product and have him write arrangements for a live show then? And how much will his work cost? So many decisions!

I also spent some time listing all the songs I've written relating to Christmas and the popular tunes I'd like to record too and I have too many for one project. That means I will have to cut some out. Ouch!!!!

For's back to the church tonight for rehearsal and service planning.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

"The Elephant Diet" Day # 11

Concert at Menno Haven, PA

My mother listens to my program
A few very cool things happened tonight in relation to my CD project.

I gave a short concert at the retirement home where my mother lives.

Someone from the community who is on my mailing list must have seen the date scheduled on my calendar and came to the concert.  She first heard me years ago in MD at another concert.

She came up after the program and asked if I've ever considered doing a Christmas CD.  For the first time in years, I was able to respond by saying, "yes, I have committed to doing one!".  Usually I say, I hope to someday, or I don't know if I'll ever get to do one or not.  But tonight, I could say YES and I felt like shouting it out!!!

The other neat thing that happened was that after my concert, I checked my e-mail and discovered that an orchestra conductor I contacted recently about doing orchestral arrangements and conducting for a Christmas show (to celebrate the completion of the CD) finally got back to me and is available to meet and listen to what I'm writing and see what he thinks about writing arrangements for the songs.

I am quite excited!  Onward we move!!!

Now...I'll go eat some of the fresh chocolate chip cookies I just took out of the oven.....joined by my husband.

Monday, December 17, 2012

"The Elephant Diet" Day # 10

Busy day.

Started at 5:15 a.m.

Gym, breakfast meeting, staff meeting, lunch meeting, decorating the church for Christmas and rehearsing.

Home for a cup of tea and short rest, then off to do a concert tonight.

Prayed over the CD project on my way to the concert. Tried out some of my Christmas tunes on the audience and found them to be well received. That's all I can do today toward the project.

Still to do: write in my gratitude journal and then enjoy a big juicy naval orange for a snack, with my husband.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

"The Elephant Diet" Day # 9

It's Sunday again.  My sabbath of the week.

Since my 'day job' is at a church, that doesn't make for much of a sabbath.  In fact, we had a quiz this morning in our class about the Christmas story.  I failed it.  As we discussed the answers, I realized how much of what I think about the Christmas story has been handed down to me through the carols we sing every year.

For example:
1) we don't know that there were 3 kings, only that there were 3 gifts

there goes the song 'We Three Kings'

2) we don't know for sure that the angels sang

so what about 'Hark The Herald Angels Sing?'

3) we don't have record of any animals in the story

so what about 'the cattle are lowing' and 'why lies He in such low estate where ox and lamb are feeding?'

.....and does it really matter that we don't know for sure?

What does this have to do with my songs for my CD?  Everything!

We teach things to each other by the songs that we sing.  Details, emotions, I began thinking about the lyrics to my own songs.  What am I teaching others by what I write?

One of the lines in one of my songs says 'now she's speaking to a gathered crowd' - referring to the woman in the scriptures who had fasted and prayed most of her life for the Messiah to come.  It doesn't really say there was a crowd gathered.  I just picture it that way.

Do I research and make sure I have all the facts straight?

I'm not supposed to work on the CD on my sabbath (I made that boundary for myself) but that's like asking a mom to disengage from being a mom one day a week.  Even if she doesn't do any mom related activities, it's in her soul to let her mind wander toward her beloved children.

I'm no songs are me.  They are a part of my fabric.