Monday, March 28, 2011

How to Teach an Old Dog New Tricks or Hey, I'm Learning the Ukulele!

I didn't post much about Lent this year. To be honest, I've not put as much thought into it as a usually do. I think some of that has to do with the ages of my children. In the past I looked at activities we could do to enhance our Lenten experience, to prepare us to celebrate the Joy of Easter. In fact, I was pointed to this blog this year:  Catholic Icing. Catholic Icing is a wonderful blog chock full of ideas and activities. 

What I've realized is that I no longer have children in my home. I have teenagers. Our activities need to reflect their growing maturity. So in thinking and talking with the boys about what to "give up" for Lent (they still do think of it in those terms) we've decided to limit our time on the computer. While I believe the computer is a wonderful invention (notice I'm sitting at it while writing this), it easily sucks up our time in ways that are not productive. So, I'm not forbidding them from playing computer games or looking at information on the computer, we're just being more mindful of the kind and amounts of time we are spending at this little screen.

The question for me then became, what to do with my extra time. I've decided to work on a few other skills that I've been wanting to improve for many years. One of these skills has to do with music. I sing and play piano and guitar. I do them all poorly. I've really wanted to improve my musical skills and chose to focus on them this Lent. The one problem I am running into with my musical training has to do with my husband. He teaches music students out of our home several days a week and that limits my available time for learning. 

How to solve this problem? I decided to learn to play the ukulele. The ukulele is small, portable and quiet. I can play it in my bedroom with the door closed while he is teaching and I am not disturbing anyone. Mike bought a tenor ukulele last year because he had two ukulele students. Since I know a little about the guitar, learning the ukulele isn't quite like starting from scratch but since all the chords are positioned differently it is having to retrain my fingers and mind. I'm enjoying the challenge, it's giving me something new to think about and it's bringing more music into our house!


amy said...

God bless you in these new endeavors.

volpecircus said...

so cool! i have short little fingers and have always had trouble playing anything but a little kids guitar. i always thought this would be right up my alley.

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