Teaching Bad Kids Good Music

Okay… sorry. They aren’t bad kids, per say. They just do bad things sometimes. And if I’m being honest the bad things they do really aren’t bad. They’re more out of curiosity or wanting to try to help. Like when Crash watered the flowers this evening, except he drug the hose across the flowers he was watering. Luckily no flowers were harmed in their watering.

So anyway… on to the good music. We can all agree music has changed over the years. There have been plenty of “The Evolution of Music” videos made demonstrating this. When I say “good music” I obviously mean what is good to me. It may not be good to you. That’s the joy of music. What my kids call “good music” is nonsense to me. They’re into electronic music produced primarily for video games for mobile devices. Not to bash electronic music, there is certainly some good stuff out there. But to me good music is The Doors, The Who, Bon Jovi, Queen, Billy Joel.

Our home assistant Alexa can play all of them. Of course, she can play the boys’ video game songs, too. And the song that has only one word repeated over and over and the word is “nom”. I dare you to listen to “nom nom nom“. Let me know how long you listen. The winner gets a prize. The loser gets an ear ache.

They are already familiar with AC/DC. Thunderstruck, You Shook Me All Night Long, Back in Black. Listen to the Money Talk. Tonight they were introduced to Behind Blue Eyes, Light My Fire, and Bohemian Rhapsody. Naturally, while listening to Freddie Rhapsody it Crash states, “this doesn’t sound like rock and roll.”

“Just you wait, buddy.”

I see a little silhouetto of a man
Scaramouch, scaramouch will you do the fandango
Thunderbolt and lightning very very frightening me
Gallileo, Gallileo,
Gallileo, Gallileo,
Gallileo Figaro – magnifico

Then he was impressed.

Then we listened to “Fat Bottomed Girls”. I don’t need to tell you they loved that one even more.

What “good music” do you use to impress your kids?

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The Metaphor of My Running Playlist

My heart goes out to the victims and their families of the Vegas shooting. I can’t imagine how terrifying a time that was. My heart also goes out to those in Edmonton who faced a terrorist and fell victim to such extremism. May they find peace and solace in these troubling times.


Running has always been a part of my life. I’ve played sports since I could kick, throw, and swing. Then in high school I discovered wrestling (thanks Doug!) and I ran even more. Until I entered university running was just a way to keep in shape for all the other sports I played. It was never a sport itself.

Then it was. My first race was a relay race in western Maryland. Teams of two would take turns running a five and half mile loop through the woods. For. Six. Hours. We took second and I was hooked. Since then I’ve run four half marathons and several 10k races. Mostly, I’ve just run. Not for training. Not for racing. But just for the sake of running. Call it “me time” or “exercise time” or “nuts” but I enjoy it. I just wish I had more time for it.

Sometimes I run to music and sometimes I let Mother Nature provide the soundtrack.

Here are the top 10 songs in the playlist I listen to on my runs and why I run to them…

1. Lose Yourself – Eminem

The beat for this song start my run perfectly. It matches my cadence. Lose yourself in the music, the moment and that’s exactly what I do. I tune out the world and tune into myself – my footfalls, my breathing, and the road ahead. Suddenly, my frustrations with the kids, my honey-do list, and the million other worries of adulting melt away behind. I outrun them all. Did I mention the bpm (beats per minute) is spot on?

2. America’s Sweetheart – Elle King

This is just a fun song. While I’m usually too out of breath to sing along, I try. Out there where no one can hear me I can sing my heart out without puncturing eardrums. So kick out the jams, kick up the soul / Pour another glass of that rock and roll and I kick up the pace and pour another glass of kick ass.

3. The Light – Disturbed

This song is moving and I love the grungy vocals behind the usually heavy metal band. This song is about seeing the positives, seeing the light no matter how bad things seems to be. Sometimes darkness can show you the light. By the time I get to this song I’m at mile 2 and this one settles me in for the next 3+ miles. Don’t let hope become a memory. Because there are many things I hope for – money, health, family, travel…

4. Love Run Out- One Republic

The drums. The piano. Driving. Pulsing. Invigorating. I’ll be your light, your match, your burning soul. Well, duh. I’m your hubband, DW, I’ll be what you need to me to be. Even on those days when you get growly at me. Even on those days when all “my best” traits are shining through in our offspring. Don’t worry, my love will never run out.

5. Hall of Fame – The Script Ft. Will i am

This song makes me feel like I can conquer the world. You can move a mountain / You can break rock. I can and I will. Okay, maybe not move a mountain, but I can run up this really big hill. Maybe I can’t break rock but I can break my personal best by running just a bit faster.

6. My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark – Fall Out Boy

I love the energy of this song. I get lost in the song and forget that I’m 5 miles into my run with another 1.2 to go. So light ’em up up up / I’m on fire. I’ve run this far, on fire I am. This song provide me that boost of energy to finish my run strong rather than limping, sucking wind, and begging for someone to come get me.

7. Hey Brother – Avicii

I just love to sing along with this one, even if it is difficult to do when you’re this far into a run you’re supposedly doing for fun. The water’s sweet but blood is thicker. Family is important and by this point in my run I’m headed back to them. So close to loved ones and food. So refreshed and feeling new, albeit worn out. Plus the bass is pretty wicked sweet. I can feel my feet nearly leave the ground.

8. Demons – Imagine Dragons

This song is a bit slower than the others. For good reason, too. I’m nearing the end of my 10 song playlist and I need a little rest, slow the pace just enough to hold the notes and belt it out before getting back to where people can hear me. With a little luck, I’ve been able to outrun my demons and leave them far, far behind.

9. The Fighter – Gym Class Heroes ft. Ryan Tedder

Hell yeah I’m a fighter. That’s why I’m out here getting my miles in. So I can fight harder. While I’m not exactly sure what I’m fighting, other than the old me in order make a healthier, new me. Ya ever feel like your train of thought’s been derailed / That’s when you press on Lee nails. Fake it until you make it. Be the best you can be until can be better.

10. Iron Man – Black Sabbath

My heart is in the classics, my parents music. How cool is it to listen to a sci-fi song on your run? Dude time travels to the future, hits a magnetic storm on his return and turns to iron. No one listens to his warnings of an apocalypse so he kills them, becoming the apocalypse he warned of. Plus it’s good old Ozzy Osbourne with Black Sabbath. On certain runs this is my cool down, stretch afterward, song. After a good run I feel like an Iron Man. Though not the killing kind because I’m too tired. And I don’t kill. Except that run. I killed that run.

What do you like to listen to when you run?

Now go run and catch me on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook!

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From Mark Remy at dumbrunner.com

Sunday Share Happiness

I’m too lazy to look up what number share this one is. So I’m calling it Happiness instead.

My about page was pinged yesterday. That’s when I learned that I’d been nominated for The Happiness Tag by a fellow creative blogger friend Laura from The Riddle From the Middle.  Laura paid me a lovely compliment when she said that my posts make her smile.  What a wonderful thing to say to another writer.  Thank you so much for your kind words.

*Thanks for the words, Laura! 

She couldn’t have tagged me for a Happiness post on a better day. Yesterday was a happy day to beat all happy days. Well not ALL of them, of course. But still…

Here are the rules.

List:

  • Five things that make you happy.
  • Five songs that make you happy.
  • Five bloggers that make you happy and notify them of the nomination.

The five things that make me happy are all from yesterday.

  1. Our littlest Bang had his graduation ceremony yesterday. He’s officially done with kindergarten. His teachers are begging us to have a little a little girl now so they can have another one in their class. I guess they adored Bang. Unfortunately for them there won’t be another from us.
  2. They nicknamed each one of their 20 students during the ceremony. They name our Bang “The Bucket filler”. In case you aren’t familiar with the book by Carol McCloud “Have You Filled A Bucket Today”, it’s about showing acts of kindness. So to know Bang is their bucket filler makes a mom and dad proud.
  3. After the ceremony we went out to a celebratory lunch with DW’s dad and step-mom (who is way more than a step-mom and is more like a 2nd mom). During lunch the owner of the restaurant realised it was Bang’s graduation day and told him he could pick any dessert he wanted and it would be on her. His eyes were as big as the plate his lunch was served on. She also extended this offer to another family (and good friend of Bang’s) who came to eat at the same establishment.
  4. Upon hearing that his grandson would be getting free dessert for graduating, Guppie (DW’s dad) borrowed Bang’s “graduation cap” and told the waitress that he just graduated, too. Anything for free dessert!
  5. Bang I washed the truck. He’s got as much water on us as he did the truck. I see why his teacher’s called him the bucket filler – he filled my soapy bucket right to the tippy top** While he and I washed and vacuumed the truck, DW helped the neighbor plant flowers in her garden. It was a wonderful day!

**not what bucket filling really means

Bang graduate

Bang the Graduate

Guppie the Graduate

Guppie the Graduate

Now for five songs that make me happy…

  1. Flo Rida – My House Bang has taken to changing lyrics to fit whatever is in his little head. This one being my favorite lyric change. He’s FOREVER playing with the garden hose. Sprays himself. Sprays everything within range. I’m FOREVER telling him to turn the hose off. The lyrics have become, “Welcome to my house, baby turn the hose off”. Give it a listen and change the lyrics. You’ll laugh, too.
  2. Strumbella – Spirits Here’s another lyric change for you. Outside playing yesterday and bumblebee flew into Bang’s hair. Naturally, he told me that he had a bee in his hair. Then he smiles his mischievous smile and sings, “I’ve got guns in my head and they won’t go, I’ve got bees in my head and they won’t go”.
  3. Elle King – America’s Sweetheart – This is a newer favorite. It’s a fun song with a wicked good beat for running.
  4. Jethro Tull- Aqualung  – This song is older than me, but I remember my parents having this album and I loved it. Reminds me of the rock and roll of my parent’s day (late 60’s and early 70’s). Queen. Led Zeppelin. Elton John. Lynyrd Skynyrd.
  5. Enrique Englais – Hero – This was our “First Dance” song, DW!

 

Five blogger that make me happy…

  1. That’s What Anxious Mom Said
  2. Grubbs-n-Critters
  3. A Momma’s View
  4. Ah-Dad
  5. Sounds Like Life to Me

I didn’t tag Eli of Coach Daddy because he was tagged by Laura. Otherwise I would have tagged him 🙂 I read that he’s accepted this Happiness tag and will post his own at some point!

What makes you happy?

Science on youtube

There are a couple Youtube channels I keep an eye on. They’re both science related.

One is Michael here Stevens of Vsauce. While not strictly science, his videos are highly educational and entertaining. He answers everything from why “bad words” are bad to “Is the Earth really flat?” With 9 and half million subscribers, He must be doing something right.

The other is Derek Muller’s Veritasium. Born in Australia, moved to Canada as a kid, then moved back to Australia to do his PhD at Sydney University. His videos are all based on science and engineering and are also very educational. He understands how we learn and his videos are conducive to the methods he studied in his PhD.  He has a following of nearly 3 million. He covers everything from the truth of the swirl in the southern hemisphere to explaining the magnus effect.

Crash and Bang are currently obsessed with Minecraft parodies. These silly songs are all about minecraft, however, they’re sung to the tune to currently popular songs. Like Maroon 5’s Animal becomes “Craftable”. Or Eminem’s Friends with a Monster becomes “Friends with a Creeper”. We (meaning I) put a few of them on the cell phone so the boys could listen to them in the truck. The tough part is checking them to make sure they’re okay. None of these songs have swear words. There was one song (The Creeper Rap) that sings of blowing up blocks like Al Qaeda and being a suicide bomber. That’s what a “Creeper” is in minecraft, but the boys don’t need to be hearing about such bombers. There’s a ban on that song in our house, now.

What do you watch on YouTube? Is there a particular channel you follow? Are you on YouTube? Feel free to leave a link to your channel in the comments for us to check out.