Creative Parents Create Creative Kids {say that 10 times fast}

Color Time FunI love writing. I have loved writing since I was a young child and it has always helped me to get over various things in my past. My children love drawing. Each of my children know, a their own level and interpretation, what I do for a living from home and each are curious in their own way about it. I am blessed that I have creative children but I think it’s because they have a creative Mom. I must admit my children draw way better than me and have way better story title ideas than I do, but we have fun on rainy days together.

When there is no time to go outside or the weather sucks, the kids and I head into the living room to have some fun with paper, crayons and pencils. The kids love when I draw with them or color, honestly they just love that I am there, even if it’s me listening or watching them do their thing the paper, pencils and crayons.

I had a blast on this particular day, shown in pictures, because my sons wanted to make a book. I didn’t have staples left for my stapler so I had to get creative… use my three whole puncher and extra binders with printer paper to make them a “book”. The boys were so happy with me, because not only did I use what I could to make them a “book” to draw and color in, but I did it in a way that allows for them to add more paper down the road. They were happy!

My son, Aj, tried to convince me to draw a King because he wanted to write a story about a King with all These Weapons. My son Aj is the one who will always first try to get someone else to do something for him, however, with a little bit of encouragement and him realizing you are not doing things for him, he will do it and man did it come out rather good for a child who barely draws pictures at home.


What do you think? Do you like Aj’s king drawing? More images form this day to come at Wordless Wednesday tomorrow! Stay tuned…

Just Not Feeling It

You can tell when I am in this rut, although I am not really feeling down and out because I have an amazing support system in my immediate life, I just feel different. It’s as if I am just in a daze, maybe it’s due to Papa passing and having to use all of my strength to be there for my oldest during her grieving process or maybe it’s simply because I have this tendency to make myself be stronger than I need to be.

The love in my life aka Lee, was telling me the other day that I do not have to be so strong all of the time, we all have a breaking point, we all have that one thing that puts us over the limit of what we can handle. I was also reminded that this man I love is my shoulder to cry on, he had zero issues with me crying all night long when I found out that Papa had passed. Did not matter that Papa is my ex boyfriends Dad, Papa to my daughter .. why? Because this man, Papa, was a part of my world, a part of my daughter’s world and Lee “gets that”. Lee is like my twin in many ways, but we are different enough to keep each other moving forward instead of getting stuck in a rut for too long.

Blah feeling

While I do not feel sad or down, I am just simply needing a moment or something, to breath, to cry, to write. Something. I am working on putting my finger on what it is I really need, but my work still needs to be done. So while writing on here is fun and therapy, there are reviews to be done, blog posts to be written and work to be completed for various freelance writing projects.

That is how it is. If I were to be a work outside of the home Mom, my job would require me to be back on game by now, I couldn’t sit and sulk and be in this blah state of mind. I would have to get up off of my butt and move forward. The other thing is, if I don’t whack out of this blah type personality or feeling, how am I showing my kids to move forward? That is what matters most, that I write to get things out of my head so I can be the role model I have always been for my kids.

While I am “just not feeling it”, I am “feeling”, I guess that is a good thing, right?!

The Fairy Hobmother has Visited Me

Fairy_hobmother_for_bloggersI am not talking about the tooth fairy that visited last night scrounging up change to place in my daughter’s tooth fairy box in exchange for her lost molar, no. I am talking about another amazing fairy, this is the Fairy Hobmother who visits blogs to sprinkle gifts to use for just spreading the belief in fairies.

Heck if I can believe in the tooth fairy at 31 years of age, I suppose a Fairy Hobmother is not that far fetched to believe in. So today I write about being visited by the Fairy Hobmother in hopes that I get sprinkled a little gift and other bloggers do too.

If you leave a comment on this blog post, as a blogger, you just may receive a visit too!

Most of you may or may not know, I will be moving from where I live now at some point here, after a year and a half of renting from my Mom the time has come for her to move back to this area with her husband and me to move on with my kids to our new “home”. I thank Mom for allowing me to stay here, while I paid for her mortgage as a way to assist me in getting back on my feet from a foreclosure. I think I have grown close to my Mom during this past year and a half and that is something I can walk away with being grateful for, among other things.

As I search around for a new rental one of the things that I really need to know is if there is a washer and dryer hook up at the new rental. I have three kids and let me tell you what, I certainly wish this Fairy Hobmother could not only sprinkle me with gifts, but make laundry magically disappear into dresser drawers too ;-)

When I move, I will need to purchase a cheap tumble dryer as a way to ensure my laundry never goes undone, piled to the ceilings in my new home.  Of course, if I don’t get a dryer or washer for my new rental home, I will just have to be a frequent visitor at the local laundry mat.

Now that I have sprinkled the love of the Fairy Hobmother to you all, I hope you will believe in fairies again and leave me a comment below telling me something that you wish a Fairy Hobmother would do for you!

Messing with Header for FB Profile and Page

I love playing with picture collages using Picasa and well most recently I decided to update my personal Facebook profile with this cute family collage of our recent times together …

Facebook Cover Photos

I think this collage is perfect for my family … the youngest is a ham for the camera in each picture, as is the norm in this house. The oldest is serious at times and a pain for smiling when I say to smile for a pic sometimes. The middle child is happy to smile for me lately .. looking all handsome. I love my family and I love my kids.

What do you use to create Facebook cover photos? Any particular program?

Nature vs. Nurture – Where Does Musical Talent

It is an age old question, whether nature or nurture shapes human beings into the people they become. As modern scientists understand it, most things are a combination of both. Musical talent requires an array of different skills, each of which can be taught and each of which is influenced to varying degrees by our genes.

The Components of Musical Talent

People who are talented with music have a set of different skills they have honed as they relate to music. Some of these are:

  • Hand-eye coordination
  • Muscle memory
  • Auditory discernment
  • Music reading

No musician would be successful without at least moderately good skills in each of these areas. As you can see, some of these skills are purely learned such as music reading, while others may be more affected by genetics, such as hand-eye coordination. However, all of them require a certain amount of ability given by genes and a lot of practice.


IMAGE LICENSE: - see image above

The “Nature” of Musical Talent

Some things that affect musical talent are known to be genetic. People have different abilities to perform certain motor tasks, for instance, which can have a genetic background. However, most of these small differences are not as important for musicians as they might be for competitive athletes.

It is possible that some people are born more musically gifted than others. This used to be the assumption that was made about extremely talented musicians. However, even if there is the occasional musical prodigy born, there is significant evidence to support the idea that most talented musicians are taught, not born that way.

The “Nurture” of Musical Talent

Evidence from a study done with musicians in their early 20s at a German music school suggests that practice and training are far more important than any talent a person might be born with. This study had teachers group the students in most talented, moderately talented and least talented groups. The main correlation that was found was number of hours of practice time.

Another study found that British school children who were more or less successful at learning an instrument in a musical school could also be separated into groups differentiated by practice hours. There was no difference in the age the children first showed interest in music or rhythm and dance. However, the number of hours of practice invested by children who were relatively successful at learning an instrument was nearly twice as much as those who were fairly unsuccessful.

Determination: More Important Than Either?

Deliberate practice, the process of working to remove errors from performance and improve skills, requires dedication and determination. Most great athletes, artists and performers spend hours every day for years in order to become as good as they are. Whether or not they have the talent, it requires dedication and determination to stick with something that may not be fun or show obvious results for a long period of time.

There is no doubt self motivation plays a large part in whether a student sticks with their new musical hobby or not. However, friends and family who provide the needed support will greatly increases the chances of success for the student.

Nurturing Musical Talent

If determination is important to talent and mostly comes from a deep interest in the subject, then kid’s interest in music is the first step towards helping them become musically talented. Many of the world’s famous musicians came from homes where music was an important and positive part of their daily lives. A child who is exposed to music in a fun and age-appropriate way comes to associate it with positive emotions and is much more likely to be interested in playing music or performing.

A child who loves music may hear a great musician sing or play and decide there and then, that he or she wants to play or sing this same way. This intense, internal motivation is the start of how people become great. They also do need outside support. Parents who are willing to give their children resources such as instruments and lessons will nurture their child’s interest and their talents.

Nobody really knows if genes play an important part in becoming a talented musician or not. However, it is almost certain that they play a less important part than interest, determination, practice, and access to resources. Perhaps some people are born with more musical talent than others but it does not seem to be the deciding factor in who becomes a great musician.

Amanda Williams is a blogger for TakeLessons. Since 2006, TakeLessons has provided safe, affordable and fun singing and music lessons to students of all ages.  Students can find music teachers in over 2,800 cities nationwide, for 38 different types of lessons.

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