Wednesday, September 23, 2009

My Little Songbird

I have a daughter who loves to sing.

She has a good voice too. I'm not sure where this voice came from ... definitely not from me!! I'm the family joke. But I don't mind.

So far in life Songbird has been very blessed.

In Nebraska she was a member of the state Childrens Choir. Her director was amazing. She was also very tough...which was good because it toughened Songbird up a bit. At first she was destroyed with any criticism - but she was also a 4th grader. Just a baby.

In the Childrens Choir they also got to work with famous directors from New York and they sang with the Nebraska Symphony. Both were amazing opportunities and amazing to learning experiences.

Our move to Texas brought us to a town with no Childrens Choir. But luck was with us. First, her choir teacher at school is amazing. She has published music even. The choirs were good enough to compete on many levels. Her last state competition, Songbird got to sing a solo, new composition written by her choir teacher and they got a 5. That is the highest score. Along with the other pieces they took yet another trophy for our schools.

On top of that we ended up in a church with a special teen singing ministry. Songbird tried out for a singing spot and made it. She was beside herself. I was happy as she would be under Gary Rhoades, our music director, who is also a name in the business.

With the exception of the week trip to Chicago with the Childrens Choir and a trip to Boston with Motion, all this was very little cost. She has received the bulk of her learning for free. That is incredible.

She has also decided she wants to go to college and earn a music degree. Being the practical parents that we are, we are encouraging a major/minor degree plan as we aren't sure where she is going with this....but we are encouraging her all the same.

So now, we end up in Ohio. Although God has been all over this move, it has also cost us greatly in a few areas.

1. An unsold house threatens our financial security.
2. The school system is just not as good -- and MM had been excepted into a school I wanted
her in back in Texas.
3. We left behind a church and church family that all of us loved very much. I don't believe the
experience can be duplicated.
4. The school choir is lame.

Songbird was in major shock after starting school. Freshmen were not even sight reading music yet!!!!! She felt the choir sounded like a bunch of 2nd graders. Plus, because they are so bad, they don't compete in any fashion.


We are talking her college choice and career here.

So we start searching for alternatives.

First, we have been unable to find another Motion group in the area (church). This would have been a good thing to keep up. Plus, none of the churches we have inquired about so far have any type of teen choir (although some will let the teens sing with the adults...but many do not).

I had Songbird ask the choir teacher if there were any Children's Choirs in the area. One of the neighboring towns does have one so at least we did get that info.

There is also an advanced choir at school. Songbird began asking questions and trying to find out about it from day one. She was discouraged at every turn.

First, she was told that unless she was taking the private voice lessons at school ($60 a month!!), she really didn't have a chance.

WHAT???? Does that not sound like extortion to anyone else??? Buy my private lessons or your wont pass the audition???? Excuse me?

Then, when she said she wanted to audition anyways, she was told that Freshman's rarely make it. It's mostly Seniors, and they have preference since they will be off to college next year.

She still insisted that she wanted to try out.

Then she comes home and tells me she is upset. Each person has to sing a piece, and then will be tested on sight reading. She then tells me the sight reading is done by grade. By what they are expected to know in said grade. And she is more advanced than the freshmen. So she asks me, "Mom, how is she supposed to know what I can do if she is giving me the freshmen tests???" How can she grade me that way? " So I tell her to go respectfully ask if she can have a more difficult sight reading piece. And she was told yes. So, she's feeling better. And she decides to do the piece she sang at state last year that her last choir teacher composed. Good choice.

So the day arrived for auditions. I was sick so didn't get to take her....daddy did. And less than an hour later she comes busting in the house with an ear-to-ear grin.

You know she made it.

I never doubted it.

Now if we can just get the house sold so I can finally get the kid in piano lessons, she will be well on her way to her college dreams.

Surely that is in God's plan. After all, he's the one that gave her the voice.


  1. Good for her! You must be so proud.

    I'll pray for your house to sell quickly. I know how stressful that can be.

  2. ah!! that is so awesome! and I am actually shedding tears over it!

    God IS all over this move and He has that sweet teenager of yours in the palm of his hand. I am so thrilled that she is getting to use the voice He did indeed give her!

  3. Oh, you had me going the whole post...hoping she would make it! YES!

  4. Congratulations!!! Praying, Praying that house will sell. One little thing at a time, right? Staying positive for you!

  5. Congratulate Songbird for me, will you? I am praying for your house to sell. And I am reminded of the verse I have been holding on to for these last several months. Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you, says the LORD. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future."

  6. Way to go Songbird! This was always one of the most frustrating aspects of moving. Reading your post, I never realized how hard my momma had to work to keep me plugged in with drama. She always managed to find something for me that was challenging, no matter where we moved.