The world is your oyster!: Goodbye summer??        

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My name is Heather.

I am 22 years old.

I am an East Coast girl
who also loves Utah.

I love my life. How could I not?

The world is my oyster :)
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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Goodbye summer??

In 5 days, I will be leaving Maryland to go back to Utah. I amm really excited....I love Utah, and I love school....but I am also starting to get kind of sad about leaving! It looks like this weekend will be another bittersweet time.

This whole week has been totally crazy as we try to cram everything into the last two weeks of the summer that we kept putting off earlier. On Saturday, we had a sister day at Six Flags. This was an absolutely necessary trip because Six Flags is going bankrupt and so clearly we had to go! We left at about 10:30 and rode all the rides that we wanted to right away, which was such a good decision, because after lunch at Johnny Rockets it started raining. At first it wasn't so bad, when we were on the octopus ride, but then it just started pouringg. We were soaking wet so we decided to just get a funnel cake and call it a day. I was pretty much ready to go home anyway, but the rain just reiterated this.

Today Caitlin, Kelly, Jenn and I all went to single's ward for the last time this summer. That ward has really been good for us this year. I've always learned a lot from the lessons and I've gotten to meet a lot of really cool people. A lot of them are going to BYU so that will be fun to know some random people there.

Then Holly and I had a piano recital for our students at my house. This summer I just taught my brothers, sisters, mom, and the 7-yr-old neighbor boy across the street (who is literally a child genius and so cute) and Holly had two students who were there. So right when we got home from church, Kelly and I had to get the house ready and prepare some refreshments. It was a very good recital which started out with my Uncle Jacob and Aunt Devon knocking on the door unexpectedly during my introduction and welcome. I don't think anyone minded but it was still pretty funny timing. All of the students did a very nice job but I don't know if anyone did their whole song without a single mistake. I remember when I took lessons, instead of just teaching them, and I would get sooo nervous before recitals. I only remember one recital that I did my whole song perfectly and other than that I made at least one mistake every time.

At this recital, probably the award for Most Memorable Performance would have to go to Jacob. Apparently he missed the memo that recitals are a little more fancy than your everyday pickup baseball game, and he performed in shorts and a t-shirt. I guess he also missed the memo that both my mom and I told him to change. Either way, he decided at the last minute that he wanted to sing his song while he played. It was a lovely demonstration of all his musical abilities. Both Jacob and I had to have tubes put in our ears when we were younger so that we could hear better, but I think the tubes worked better for me, because Jacob is still a little bit tone-deaf. He sings songs very deliberately, sticking loyally to one note the whole time. Hearing him sing and play was certainly an experience. He is turning out to be quite the class clown!

My mom was the last performer. She took lessons for a short time as a little girl but other than that, she just started this summer. I was a little nervous about teaching her...I mean, she's my mom....but she was suchh a good student. She listened to every every everything I said and practiced really diligently every week. It was really cute I thought :)

Anyway this was her first recital and I know she was so nervous for it. Sometimes at her lessons she will mess up and get flustered and explain to me that she's usually so much better at this song, and that's just with me there. So considering this, and the fact that I remember feeling nervous before my own recitals, I was feeling some sympathy anxiety as she sat down, about to play. Joseph has swine flu (.......yeah. i know! Kinddd of ridiculous. We are all very irreverent about it. We call him pig, pigman, and piglet every time we address him and oink at him whenever possible. We've also started referring to his room as the pigsty. A few nights ago at scripture study, he read a scripture that said, "I say unto you, Nay," and I whispered to Julie, "Did he just say nay? I thought he was a pig!" She replied, "Oh, he's just confused." We thumbed up our noses at him and oinked appropriately, reminding him of his true biological identity.) The reason this all is relevant is because Joseph performed right before Mom, and she insisted that he disinfect the piano keys before she played. So we had a brief intermission while he wiped them down and she introduced her song.

There's something about being a piano teacher at a recital for your students that makes you feel a little like a lifeguard tied to their chair. During lessons, you can jump in and save your student if they make a mistake. During a recital, you just have to sit back and let them fend for themselves. If they make a mistake, you just have to send them telepathic encouragement to take a deep breath and pick up wherever they feel comfortable.

My mom sat down and lifted her hands to the keys. She went through the first few measures beautifully, fumbled a little, and stopped. "I'm going to start over," she said, smiling. Everyone smiled back. I noticed her hands shaking a little and I quickly remembered being a student about to perform and being absolutely positive I would mess up and completely embarrass myself. Going through her song the second time, my mom made a few more mistakes and I know she wasn't very happy with her performance. That made me sad because I know how hard she has worked and I know how well she is able to play that song. As a piano teacher, you see all the little struggles a student has with their songs. You learn how their mind works as they correct their mistakes and you being to root for them when they get to a part of a song that has always been tricky for them. My mom stopped having piano lessons as a little girl because her first teacher was old and smelled bad and she just didn't want to deal with that. Now, years later, here she was, coming back and wanting to learn something, wanting to improve herself. I admire that so much. Even if she can't be proud of this particular recital, I want her to be proud of how she picked something for herself to work on and then really did work on it. I know it must have taken a lot of courage for her to go up in front of her children, the most important people in her life, and her peers, and perform in a situation where it was possible that she would make mistakes.

After this final performance, which actually was quite good, Holly and I each said a few words about how much we enjoyed teaching, etc., and then we invited everyone to the kitchen for refreshments. At each recital I like to give my students a Symphony chocolate bar and this time as I was passing them out, I discovered that I had one extra. I stood there holding it for a minute, trying to figure out why I had gotten one extra, and then I suddenly realized that I had forgotten to include Julie in the program! She had a song and everything and I just completely forgot to put her on the program, so she never got a chance to perform it! So I felt a little bad about that but she didn't seem too concerned. People milled around, snacking on the refreshments, and then when everyone had left, we had dinner with Charlene.

Charlene babysat us when we were younger and we can all very clearly remember laying with our butts to the wall, flailing our legs and arms and singing at the top of our lungs, "Charlene the famous babysitter, whoo!" No one knows how this got started but we loved when she came to babysat and enthusiastically advertised her to all of our friends. At any rate, she was kindly able to overlook our childhood devilishness and come over for dinner and is always sweet and fun when we see her now.

After dinner we moved into the living room again to give Julie a chance to perform her recital piece. She did a lovely job and then we were paid a visit by Ecoli Imishi (pronounced Ee-cull-ee Ee-mee-she).

This is where my family gets weird again.

Ecoli Imishi is Nicole's alter-ego opera singer. Nicole likes to read Nancy Drew mysteries to my mom when they are driving in the car together and one day while they were reading, Ecoli Imishi was born. Nicole decided to announce the Nancy Drew Story Hour with a song by her and she's been a frequent visitor in our home ever since (when she is not otherwise detained by world tours, etc.). Ecoli Imishi is best known for her shrillness of voice but the shortness of her temper is also legendary.

Needless to say, we were delighted to have such an esteemed guest in our midst (once again).

Following her performance, the rest of the family felt that this would be an appropriate time to reveal their alter-egos as well. Sarah made an appearance as the famous salsa dancer, Senora Sali. After she burned up the dance floor with her never-before-seen tricks, Delia and Edeline graced us with an impressive rendition of the long-lost vocals to Tchaikovsky. At this point the small extension on the recital that everyone had been expecting was just spiraling out of control and taking on a new form as an impromptu circus. I was glad when no more unexpected special guests showed up and we could all go our separate ways.

On a completely different note, I recently realized that I go to great lengths to protect myself from feeling sad. I try not to put myself in situations that will make me sad. I avoid them at whatever cost. A few nights ago I went over to Caitlin's for a movie and she wanted to watched P.S. I Love You. I have only ever seen previews for this movie and I know it would make me cry. I know it. I picked Win a Date with Tad Hamilton instead but the whole thing made me think. I am so afraid of feeling sad that I wonder if I miss out on a lot because of it. Is it just sadness that I am missing out on?

Anyway I realllllyy should be getting to bed. Good night all :)

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