play and cleanup, communication with kids, quartet rehearsal

This morning I was dragging, having gone to bed way too late last night. I went upstairs to get dressed after my shower, and the three kids came with me. So, I burrowed under the comforter on Hazel’s bed, and relaxed while they played, with some interruption, snuggling, poking, and playing with various of them occurring at intervals. Hazel made a fort with a lot of towels, and then we had a semi-successful clean-up when we decided it was time to go downstairs. I think I should have done more of it with her, but as always, I’m learning as we go.

During some moment of differing needs today, I thought that it might be a good idea for me to have a morning check in with Hazel (and, ultimately, with the twins too) about what we all want for the day. I don’t have to run the whole show. We can discuss and form plans together. Duh. I am an old dog, but I figure I can learn new tricks.

I got to nurse the twins for the first time in a few days today. They went to sleep quite promptly. It is lovely and centering to spend that time with them. I am glad that they’re still interested, even in the brief bits of time they nurse at naptime and bedtime.

This afternoon Ted and I had another joint session. I am so glad we have that resource. Our therapist also gave us some good ideas to consider with how to handle Hazel’s dramatic and frequent reactions to “owies” big and small. Good food for thought. Her basic idea was to encourage self-care, so that Hazel’s taking on more responsibility for herself and her emotions. I think that, combined with some ideas we got in our parenting class, we’ll figure this one out. It has been getting to both of us.

My quartet had a very productive, very enjoyable rehearsal this evening. We did our most thorough work on the fist movement of the Prokofiev String Quartet No. 1, but after we’d dug into it to our satisfaction, we read through the rest of the piece too. It’s a three-movement quartet with a fast second movement and a slower, quieter third movement. There are lots of paired melodies; the two violins, the second violin with viola, viola with cello. There are consequently a number of places where we’ll have to work the intonation carefully. We did some of that work tonight.

I floated out of my studio on clouds after we were done. Having a regular quartet for the first time in decades fills a hole that I had in my heart. I love music, love practicing and playing it, enjoy the larger groups of which I am a part. But quartets speak to my soul and my heart, my mind and body. I cannot overstate how impactful and meaningful is the experience. And to have three such genial, interesting, interested, and talented people with which to share it is a life gift of epic proportions.

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