I grew up in a very musical family.
My dad plays guitar and sings, and in high school played musical theater. My uncle is a professional musician and jazz singer. He plays guitar, sings, leads worship, and writes amazing music. My siblings and I are all very musical; we play instruments, sing and my brother and sister are acclaimed song writers. We’ve all married musical people.
Even though my mom doesn’t play an instrument or sing as a hobby, she can carry a very good tune and always lamented the fact that she never learned to play the drums. She is, however, extremely creative in many other areas.
Creativity runs deep and wide in our genes.
Growing up it was completely normal for us to play concerts.
We always had a piano and no less than two guitars in our home. At one time we even had a full drum set. I would usually play piano, my brother would play his guitar, my sister would usually sing and play her “flute” that she had made out of a paper towel tube.
We would put on one of dad’s records – usually The Downings Live album (because, you have to have a live album to do a concert!) and we would sing and play right along with them.
As we grew, my sister and I actually sang special songs in church, which required us to buy backing tracks, so we would use our backing tracks and belt out our favorite tunes: Father’s Eyes, Wind Beneath My Wings, People Need the Lord. El Shaddai…
There was always music in our home.
I love it that our children have naturally picked up our love for music.
It’s no wonder. My husband is a drummer and is highly creative; so our children naturally gravitate to musical creativity. From the time he was one year old my son loved to watch the Gaither Homecoming videos. He would sing and play along. His first guitar was a cardboard one I made for him. He wore it for days until it fell apart.
So we bought him a toy guitar. But I think a real one is in his near future. When he was 2 1/2 he found my husband’s practice drum pad and drum sticks and there was no taking them away from him. So for Christmas he got a toy drum set that we have since repaired hundreds of times. Add to that the bongos he got for his birthday last year…
…and let’s not leave out my “baby” – my piano.
Our oldest son has a natural gift for music: whether it’s the fact that he seems to instantly pick up on the little tunes I give him to practice on the piano or the natural rhythm he has on the drums.
But let’s not leave out our second born who was born singing. We would joke and call him Pavarotti when he cried – because he looked much like an opera singer with all that lovely tragic expression on his face!
Little did we know how much he’d really love to sing.
He is extremely partial to Wynonna Judd and can actually pick out which songs are hers and sing many of them by heart. He has an amazing ear and can imitate sounds very well.
They love it when we all gather around the piano as I play, each with his own instrument and we play a concert.
You don’t have instruments?
Don’t worry, you can make some. You can make paper plate shakers with rice or beans, use a tennis racket for a guitar, and mixer beaters for microphones.
It’s so easy to pretend!
Turn on your favorite CD and belt out the tunes!
Music lifts the spirits and infuses your home with joy and laughter. It’s a memory maker.
To this day a song can take me back 20-30 years and I can smell the smells and feel the emotion I felt in that moment a memory was made with that song. Music is powerful.
So make fun and lasting memories to your favorite songs with your kids as you gather around with your instruments and play a concert.
Let dad be the announcer and do a fun variety show with dance and musical skits.
Your kids will have fun and it’s better than any TV show any day!
This post is day 22 of the series: 31 Days of Screen Free Activities for Kids. To see all of the posts in this series visit this page.