Recital Fun

This past Monday evening the boys had a piano recital.  They have a new teacher this year, Nancy McNabb.  We totally love her.  She is helping the boys progress at a faster rate, and is making it such a fun experience for them.  They genuinely look forward to Wednesday afternoons and their lessons.  She opens the doors and says things like “Why do you keep coming back here?!?  Don’t you know you’re supposed to hate piano lessons?!?”  The first time we went over she had some spaghetti sauce bubbling in the kitchen.and she very seriously told them that if they didn’t practice she intended to cut off their fingers and add it to the pot.  The boys looked at me and kind of nervously giggled like “please laugh with us so we know she’s joking!”  They weren’t sure what to make of her at first, but she has since won their hearts.  They get along famously now!  She also wins points with me as she never fails to tell me how nice they are… how talented… how cute and funny… how good together… how much she enjoys teaching them, etc.  It’s really been a fun year!

The boys were thoroughly prepared for this recital.  Each had practiced like a mad man for weeks and was ready to play!  Nancy was especially impressed with Jack who chose a very difficult piece (she lets them select their choices). It was pretty far above his skill level when he started and he had to work really diligently to rise to the occasion. He grew a lot as a result of picking that piece, and even though I was nervous about it at first, I’m really, really glad he did!  Anyway, she was pleased with him too, and gave him the honor of last spot on the program.

So that Alaster also got a special spot, she had him go first.  Here is Nancy introducing him.  Can you tell how excited he was to play?
recital 1

We asked them in the car on the way over “How do you feel?!?  Are you excited?”  Alaster’s answer:  “I feel EXCITED!  And HAPPY!”  Jack: “I wish I was going somewhere in the middle so people would forget me.”  Oh!  Poor kid was so nervous!

Alaster earned the title of “cutest performer,” in my book.  He has only been playing for a few months, so his pieces were of course very simple.  One of them worked through his left hand up to the right with a few chords at the end.  The other worked in the opposite direction.  Well… he decided it would be neat if he started at the very bottom of the piano and played his way up it, moving up an octave each time.  Then on the other song he started at the top and worked his way down.  Nancy told everyone it was his own arrangement of the song and that we would all enjoy it.  We all did!  By the end of the first song everyone was giggling.  It was too cute!  Then when he was all done and everyone clapped he turned around in the seat and beamed to the sound of the applause.  After the clapping had ended he still stayed there and Nancy had to gently let him know it was time to go back to his seat.  I don’t think he wanted the moment to ever end!  She told me later “I have never seen a child do that before.  It was so cute!!!”

recital 2

Then there was Jacko.  Poor kid had to suffer through the whole recital before it was finally his turn.  He was really excited and incredibly prepared, but those nerves will get even the best of us!  Well… he needn’t have worried.  He played beautifully!  He had his pieces memorized (though he brought the music up just in case) and he didn’t even make one mistake.  His pieces were fast, exciting, and the perfect way to end the recital.  Way to go Jack!  We are so proud of all your hard work!

recital 3

Their special fan section:

recital 4

We were so happy Grandpa could come and support them despite the pain he was in.  By the end he really, really needed to go home, but he wouldn’t have missed the recital for the world 🙂  Good Grampa!

recital 5

Isn’t Nancy cute?  I bet you can tell from the picture what a great person she is.  We have actually known Nancy for a long time prior to her being the boy’s teacher.  She is best friends with our Gram!  She has known Corey since he was a little, little boy!  I started getting to know Nancy practically the minute I joined the family. Cindy and Corey would both talk about her so I felt like I already knew her when we moved here.  She has turned into a good friend of mine as well, and I am really, really grateful for that… and I’m also very grateful that she is now in the boys life on a weekly basis.  She’s teaching them piano, but she’s also a wonderful influence in other ways.  I will always be grateful for additional adults who love and encourage my children!

PS Family:  If you want to call us, the boys would happily play their songs for you too!  They played for Uncle Cal and Aunt Whit on Saturday 🙂

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