Last week our kids participated in a Piano Festival. This is an event where piano students present their piano pieces before a judge to be rated on how well they are doing. This year Savanna, Andy and Coby brought their best 2 pieces of music and played them before a judge. For parents, this is a nervous time because you are really hoping they get a good review so that they will continue on the road to piano nirvana. "Nirvana for piano players is when you get to a point the you can sit down at the piano and play just about anything that is plopped down in front of you." Unfortunately, I have not reached nirvana yet and I don't think I'll even get there.
Each of our kids were directed to their room with their music to be evaluated. I went with Savanna and Deanna went with Coby. I could tell that Savanna was nervous but she was keeping it under control. I waited until she was called into the room, and then I plastered my ear to the door in hopes of gleening as much information as I could as to what was happening inside. It was silent for a while, and then she played a 5 finger scale in hopes of warming up and dispelling her nervousness. She began her first piece and after the first line of music, I could tell she was having trouble. She stopped, my heart stopped. She started again and then after the second line of pros, she stopped again. I was terrified. Stopping twice on the same song was not a good start, not at all. I was then sick to my stomach that she had lost the top marks you can get at festival, "Superior". Savanna regained her composure and played through the first song without missing a beat. She paused for a minute and then started her second piece which was played without faults.
When she opened the door, I about fell over as my ear had become inseparably connected with the wood grain. I pretended to be leaning on my arm and casually asked how she did. She said she did fine, "which is what they always say" and walked over and sat down to wait for the results. Within a couple of minutes the door opened and a folder was presented to the helper. She handed it to Savanna and I looked over while holding my breath. At the top it read, "Superior"! Whewww!
After returning to the front of the church "7th ward building", to hear the results of Coby and Andy, I recalled a time when I was sitting at the piano bench with sweaty fingers and pounding heart as I was being judged on my piano prawes. I told the story of when I had received an "Excellent" instead of a "Superior". It was a troubling day which, to this day, I blame on the fact that my judge happened to be my regular piano teacher. She knew all of my faults and knew exactly where I would have trouble. For some reason I don't blame it on the young boy that would rather play baseball outside than to practice his piano every day. I blame it on the misfortune of having my teacher be my judge at Piano Festival.
Over the last couple of weeks I have been re-watching the TV show West Wing. The TV series was cancelled several years ago but just recently I found a channel that was showing all of the reruns. So, I set my Tivo and started recording them. I had forgotten just how much I enjoyed watching. The dialogue is quick and witty so you have to be "on your toes" if you want to understand all that is going on.
Today I bring you a very short clip from one of the episodes from the second season. This particular scene shows a young woman that has just been offered a job by the White House Chief of Staff. What makes this interesting is the fact that Ainsley Hayes (the young women offered the job) is a staunch Republican. Since the President of the United States in this TV series is a Democrat, it is very unusual that he would want to hire a Republican to serve in the West Wing of the White House.
Ainsley Hayes meets with the Chief of Staff with the full intention of declining the offer for a job. As the day continues, and as she walks around the White House, she discovers that the people that are working there are just normal people working hard to make the country better. Even though their political views may be far apart, they are just people trying to do what it right. At the end of her day, and after several short runin's with the senior staff at the White House, she decides to take the job and serve the President of the United States even though she is a Republican.
Here is the final scene of the episode.
It is my hope that the current administration that is occupying the White House is truly trying to do what is right and trying to make our country better. With all of the bad mouthing that is going on on the radio and TV, I can only pray that there are good honest people trying their best to make our country better.
I know, it sounds crazy but I swear to you that I have posted over 220 posts on this blog. NO WAY...... WAY!
Now this may not seem like much but I also must bring up the fact that I have also been keeping another blog fully stocked with anecdotes, stories, jokes and personal thoughts. That other blog is http://www.ldsfamily.net. And, to give you even more perspective on how much blogging I have been doing, I have also started another blog just to post stuff on, for my web store where I sell metal figurines. Yes, I started a blog solely for profit. It is http://www.metalcraftstore.com and it is a website dedicated to tell people about my webstore eCarters.com. So, if any of you out there in the bloggosphere think you are overwhelmed by keeping one blog going, just think of little old Clint blogging his brains out month after month so that 2 people out there can read it and one person can buy an overpriced figurine made of nuts and bolts and various misfit metal pieces.
Maybe sometime in the future, my work will become popular and I can make a living by just typing up random stuff that happens to me in my life. At this point, I highly doubt it because I don't feel like my writing is getting any better. It is the same dribble that I wrote 220 blog posts ago.
I just had a de ja vu, well, not a de ja vu because I didn't remember it, I guess I just realized that my son had written this same post last week and now it seems all to familiar. Ok, maybe he didn't write a post like this, but as I re-read it, it looks like something he would write.
I know that I can't save the planet on my own. I may not be able to effect any global climate (whether or not man is causing the change). I can, however, in my small little way, help to make the land fills just a little smaller. I can use a little less electricity. I can help the environment be less cluttered. Here are 2 things I do in my life to help the environment even though they may seem infinitesimal.
Just over a year ago, our garbage collection company gave us recycle bins. At first, it seemed a little tedious to break down the boxes and organize the cans and newspaper but, I decided to give it a try. After a week or two, I got into the flow of it and I actually feel like I'm helping. Recycling facts: Every ton of recycled paper: Saves 17 trees Saves 4,100 kwh of energy Saves 7,000 gallons of water Reduces air pollution by 60lb Saves 7 cu yard of landfill space
When I was a student at BYU, I remember when the university installed the electronic doors that allowed the handicapped to press a button and have the door open for them. Being the average lazy college student that I was, I would punch the button into every building and walk in through the doors as if I were the king of the land. Doors opened for me and shut for me without any effort. Then, I read an article in The Daily Universe that mentioned the fact that those doors were for the handicapped and would wear out much faster if they were used by the general public. I also noted by my own intuition, that those doors were using a large amount of electricity to open and would let in far more cold air than a regular door. My days of using the magic button ended and to this day, I prefer to open my own doors even if Target or Fred Meyer want to open them for me.
As many of you know, my daughter has been taking clogging lessons for several years. She has really become a good little dancer. If you want to see one of her dances, you can follow this link.
Last week she had the opportunity to go with her sister, mom, grandma and cousins to a clogging concert. The performers were "The Fab 5". I don't know if any of you remember or even watched the show on TV called America's Got Talent but these 5 ladies made it all the way to the finals solely on their clogging talent. This was very exciting for the little clogger in our house, so, to go see them live was a special treat. There are some wonderful things about these 5 ladies. They are all sisters, they are all Mormons, they wear modest outfits and they are cloggers. What great role models for our little girls.
After the performance, Savanna and Kate were able to meet all of the members of the Fab 5 and Deanna took some pictures with her phone.