Thursday, February 12, 2009

Strike Up The Band

I went to Savannah's band concert last night. Both the 5th grade band and the 8th grade band played at this concert. We first listened to the 5th grade band play 18 songs. That was fun. You know, if you like hearing Hot Cross Buns played by, well, by 5th graders who have had their instruments for 4 months. The contrast between the bands is really amazing though. I remember when Austin (and later Savannah) was in the 5th grade band. I remembering listening to the 8th grade band and thinking, "Thank God! There IS hope! The older kids sound so much better! In fact, when the older kids play, I don't feel my fillings vibrate at all."

When the 5th grade band began to play, Brooklyn covered her ears and kept crying, "It's loud! Mama, it's loud! It's loud, Mama!" This wasn't a problem while they were playing because they were indeed loud and no one could hear Brooklyn's complaining. Unfortunately, she kept talking at the same volume in the silence between songs. Yeah. Fun.

At some point, both Brooklyn and Clayton realized their big sister was down there playing in the band and they started shouting, "Nana! NANA! SA-VANN-AH!!!!" Poor Savannah wanted to crawl under her chair as half the band turned to see where the commotion was coming from. I think this is about the time Brooklyn found a Lego in her pocket and decided it would make a good snack.

Clay was intrigued by the band playing and he watched the director intently. He warned Brooklyn, "It's going to get loud now," or "Don't worry Oata, it's going to be quiet now."

I asked him, "How do you know when the music is going to get loud or quiet?"

"When that guy raises his stick up high, the music gets loud and when he puts the stick down low, it gets quiet," he informed me. Duh, everyone knows this, Mom!

"Where did you learn that, Clay?" I inquired. I wondered if he'd picked that up simply from his observations. Wow, this kid is a genius, I thought to myself!

He answered me. "Curious George."

"Curious George taught you when the music would get quieter and louder?"

"Yep."

And there you have it. The monkey knows.

Jackson had brought his PSP and popped in the movie Daddy Day Care. He handed Brooklyn his ear phones. She took them, rubbed the ear buds together like defibrillator paddles and proceeded to "shock" her knee. So Jackson put the ear phones on Brooklyn and started the movie for her. Not realizing just how loudly she was talking, she laughed out loud and, indicating the movie, squealed, "He pooped!!! Mom, he pooped!" Good times, good times, oh yeah, another half an hour to go...

As we were leaving the concert, I asked Jackson, "You don't want to be in band next year, do you?"

34 comments:

Anonymous said...

OMG, just when I don't think I can find anything to make me smile after a bad day, I read your blog & wind up laughing myself back into a good mood!! Dawn, thank you so much for what you give, you are AWESOME!!!!!

Cheryl

Oh Boy...Oh Boy...Oh Boy said...

LOL!! I swear I don't think my kids will ever be able to wear headphones in public because they still shout.

Sherry said...

This is funny. I just checked out that Curious George DVD from our library today. At first, I thought you were going to say Little Einsteins... when they play the songs and shout Crescendo! (louder) Decrescendo (quiter).

Dinner/Dishes/Drinking said...

Hey I didn't know that either...guess I need to watch more Curious George!??

Anonymous said...

Thanks for bringing back the memories! Some of the happiest years of my life were in band. I can't wait till my children are old enough to play.

Raevyn said...

It's amazing what you can learn from Curious George!

Persnickety Ticker said...

That monkey is a genius. He once imparted some wisdom that I personally live by to this day.

"Any day that starts out stinky and ends with a cookie is a good day."

P. H. said...

When my son was in high school, our neighbor and good friend's daughter and our son were in the marching and concert bands together. At EVERY concert for 4 years, our friend would yell out "Vanessa, Big Daddy Loves You", very loudly at some previously quiet point in the concert. At their last concert before graduation, Vanessa replied "I Love You too Dad". All the parents cracked up laughing! It was priceless - the whole auditorium of about 500 people was in stitches! It's a good thing Vanessa has such a pleasant personality. She is now an elementary music teacher.

There is a small deranged and insane part of me that misses those days - until I remember endless fall band competitions and the smell of 125 wool uniforms that had been worn all day in 90 degree heat or worse, rained on!

Paula71 said...

I needed this smile today. Thank you

Elleah said...

It's amazing where kids pick up things from!

dorthyinoz said...

Oh the days of "Sawmill Creek". May I never hear that song again after 4 kids starting band. They sound so much better now.

Andi said...

BOth Jessi, 17, and Allen, 13 were/are inband. They both play percussion. I asked Arielle, 6, the other day, "please say you do not want to play in the band?". I hapily announced that she was not going to be in band. I gave her a big hug and told her she is an angel forever. High school band is the worst interms of days after school, practices, marching band competitions, and concerts. Luckily Allen is a freshman in August and hopefully will get tired of it soon. I hate the director so hopefully he will too and drop out soon. Thanks for the laughs and the "been there done that" thoughts. *hugs*

Donna said...

i'm sorry i didn't have Brooklyn during all of our 5th grade band concerts......after you've heard hot cross buns played at every tempo possible, you need a little distraction!

Beth said...

Clearly you don't watch enough Curious George! I've seen that episode (or rather heard that episode as it plays in the car DVD player) a thousand times...

Anonymous said...

I have enjoyed the last few posts alot.
Its those kind of stories that I can relate to, pointing out the funny, that motivated me to read your blog so long ago.

Patois said...

Anything worth knowing, my kids learned from movies or TV.

Keeley said...

Hahahaha! =D =D

Oh well, what can you do? =)

Barb Chansky said...

You have a great knack of making fun of situations that usually make you try and tear your hair out:) Keep up the good work!

jana said...

Who is Oata in this story?

Dawn said...

Jana,
Sorry about that. I didn't even realize I'd written Oata. "Oata" is what the kids call Brooklyn. I don't even know how it started, but they've called her "Oata", "Oat","Oatlin" for over a year. If you call Brooklyn by her real name, she'll look at you and say, "My name is Oata."

Sara said...

Do you guys have any pets? I mean cats, dogs, rodents, reptiles? (I'm sure you think the kids and husband can be animals, though!) If not, why?

Anonymous said...

My kid learns lots of things from Curious George too! Makes me feel less guilty for plopping him down with it when I need "mommy time." :)

Brian said...

My oldest just started playing the Alto Sax. He was one of 4 people in the whole music class that could produce a sound out of the thing. Now I have one at my house. Yeah, Fun Times...

Dawn said...

Austin plays alto sax. Well, I haven't actually heard him play it for awhile, but thanks to 400 easy monthly payments, we own an alto sax.

Bonnie said...

Oh my goodness ! This blog is adorable ! i love the fridge !!!

Jari said...

I was blessed enough to attend my little brothers 8th grade band concert just before Christmas. The contrast between 6th and 8th is phenomenal. I can't wait to go to his high school performances!!

And by the way - you have been awarded!
http://offthehookwithamanda.blogspot.com/2009/02/lemonade-award.html

Jodie said...

Two of my 3 kids started out with band in 5th grade. When my older son brought home his first trombone and practiced, my younger son looked at me and asked "are you really going to let him do that in the house?" We've lived through many excruciating years of practice and endless concerts. The older son is graduating from university as a music performance major (6 trombones later...the current one was $6000), and he's written a symphony that's been performed! The younger son is getting ready to graduate HS and wants to teach music.
See, IF you can survive it, you might end up with a musician or two! But, it sure nothing but noise for a couple years! *lol*

Rick said...

Where were the PSP's when I was going to my brother's concert growing up? All we had were our thumbs to keep us entertained.

Michelle said...

Love it.

So where does Oata come from?

And I take this post as a personal warning to keep the wee ones away from all musical instruments -- including their voices. Did I catch that right?

Fiona said...

Ha! The school concerts...good times!

Candi said...

My, how things have changed. I lived at Chanute AFB, Rantoul, Illinois in the 60's and attended public schools there for 3 years. (I mention where only because no such similar programs had been offered at any other places we lived and we moved every few years so we had a long list to choose from). We had an orchestra of about 30 kids. If I remember correctly you had to be in 3rd grade to be eligible, and all 3-5 grade levels were put together. The concerts were excruciating, even for the orchestra members, until we hit Junior High. By then you only grit your teeth, but your ears no longer bled. I guess, maybe things haven't really changed that much after all. ;)

Candi said...

Me again! God bless my parents. I just read the comments about the alto sax, and couldn't help but remember how tolerant they were as I learned violoin pre-Suzuki method. What gems they were to put up with all that. I now limit my playing at nursing homes and the like. I find it easier to get my foot in the door when the audience is half deaf. %)

hrunars said...

All my 3 kids are 'Suzuki children', the eldest plays the violin, middle one the cello and the 8 year old plays the viola. Yep, it's been painful at times and a load of work but my, does it pay off! The 16 yr old plays Bach and Mozart and Kabalevsky (and all the others) beautifully, the middle one's (12) cello is starting to sound really good as well, the 8 yr old still can manage some squeaks, but getting easier all the time. Hang in there (if they want to, that is), it can mean so incredibly much fun - later :D

ComfyDenim said...

Curious George Rocks. :-)

I hadn't even considered what would happen if the kids wore ear phones like that -- They'd be yelling too. *L* Thanks for suffering that one to save the rest of us. :-)

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