Wednesday, May 30, 2018
Monday, April 16, 2018
Primary — it’s the name of the children’s organization at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Every Sunday young ones, ages 18 months through 11 years, meet for a few hours. They learn about Jesus and how to become more like Him. They’re shown how to feel Heavenly Father’s love for them and about the plan of happiness.
Music is a big part of Sunday worship in Primary. It has been my privilege to be the primary pianist off and on throughout the years since I was about 14. In my opinion, children possess more Christ-like qualities than just about anyone else. We adults can learn so much from them.
I wrote the music to this song when I was around 16. I made a primitive tape recording of it and gave it to my Aunt Dorothy who then added lyrics. I remember performing it with my sister, Jen, who sang it at a conference when she was very young.
For this recording I enlisted the help of all five of my grandchildren: Josh, Seth, Trekker, Charlie and Cora. It’s vain to deny that I stooped to bribery. Trekker’s comment at the end is evidence of this. And yes, he did get his special car.
Wednesday, April 4, 2018
Love at first sight. That’s what I experienced when I first laid eyes on her.
Our first grand daughter Cora Mae Hutchings was born December 1, 2017. She arrived fashionably late. Hutchings babies are big, but Cora was the biggest newborn yet weighing in at a whopping 10 lbs and 9 oz. She has a porcelain doll-like quality about her. There is a twinkle in her eye when she smiles—almost like she has a secret she wants to share with you. She may well ring in the era of the girls in our little brood.
I can’t wait to climb mountains with her so she can experience the view from above. There is something about a view that can only be seen after making an effort. I want to walk with her behind waterfalls. I want to swim in the ocean with her alongside an ancient sea turtle. Oh, the songs we will sing and the cookies we will bake. But I guess those things can wait. For now I will relish this sweet little angel sent from above. She’s an absolute joy and I count myself lucky to be her grandma.
With Cora in mind I wrote this piano solo. I tried to weave in the hint of an old favorite melody from an LDS children’s song here and there. I hope she likes it.
Friday, February 23, 2018
What can I tell you about Charles Robert Hutchings? He is his dad’s clone and at four months of age he has already proven to be an over achiever. He cut his first two teeth over a month ago. No big deal.
This little guy is happy and energetic and his quick smile brightens my day. He likes his tropical rainforest gym and his baby seal stuffed animal. He especially loves his elephant and rhino friends. He’s snuggly, curious and never tires of studying the collage of family photos on the fridge.
He loves sunshine and the outdoors. He’s been on a few short walks in the park that we’ve managed to squeeze in between snow storms.
He’s soooooo lucky to have a mom and dad and grandparents and great-grandparents, cousins and aunts and uncles that simply ADORE him! With his big blue eyes and his mom’s gorgeous eyelashes, he has captivated us all. Watch out cause this little guy is gonna light up the world.
A piano solo for my sweet Charlie — Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam
Monday, January 22, 2018
Whenever I write an arrangement for cello, I do so with my dear friend, Teresa Herrmann, in mind. She is a gifted musician. She can make her cello sing. Last September Teresa lost her sister, Lori. Shortly after they laid her to rest, Teresa mentioned that this was one of Lori’s favorite songs so I arranged it for piano and cello so that we could perform it together as a tribute to her sister.
About the time I finished, I realized that this song was to be included in the 2018 primary program so I tweaked it a bit to include children’s voices.
I know it gets high at the end, but that is the wonderful climax I remember trying to sing as a child. I’m sure 7-year-old Terri was standing on her tiptoes straining to reach that high note. Still, I wanted to stay true to Clara McMaster’s ascending melody at that part. You can always opt to let a few of your lower voices slip down an octave somewhere around “of which I’m a part” if needed. Another thought is to add flute or violin on the second verse to beef up the melody line.
Once again I called upon this group of fantastic young singers to help record it. You are all SUPERSTARS!! Thanks again and again.
In memory of Lori Bloom — My Heavenly Father Loves Me
Click HERE to download free sheet music - PIANO
Click HERE to download free sheet music - CELLO
Friday, December 22, 2017
In the last few months we have welcomed two new grandchildren into our lives — Charlie and Cora. My heart is overflowing with love and admiration for these two little ones fresh from heaven. It is amazing how it feels as if they have been a part of my life for so long, and yet we’ve only just met.
December’s entry is an arrangement of a children’s song. It doesn’t seem that long ago that I was singing it in my youth. The lyrics are both tender and evocative:
I think when I read that sweet story of old,
When Jesus was here among men.
How he called little children like lambs to his fold;
I should like to have been with him then.
I wish that his hands had been placed on my head,
That his arms had been thrown around me,
That I might have seen his kind look when he said,
“Let the little ones come unto me.”
by Jemima Luke
There is something about the innocence of children that softens the heart. In Matthew 18:3 the Savior taught that only if we become as little children will we be allowed to enter into the kingdom of heaven. I can tell you that when I am near my grandchildren I feel closer to heaven than at any other time. I hope this Christmas finds you surrounded by those you love.
Monday, November 13, 2017
Just pausing for a moment to reflect on my blessings . . .
I’m thankful for warm newborn snuggles from the newest member of our family, grandson Charlie--fresh from heaven.
Recognizing how fragile life is, I’m thankful for health and strength for me and my loved ones.
I am thankful for the opportunity to get out and experience nature in every season.
I’m thankful for Round Table pizza, Auntie Anne’s pretzels, and Brother Jon’s cheese steak. Well, I am.
I am thankful for a home that is a safe haven from the turbulent world and for peace that comes from above.
I am thankful for music that brings me joy and stills my soul.
I’m thankful for an unbreakable bond that ties me to my ancestors and for sacrifices made that I will never fully comprehend.
Family is everything to me. I’m thankful for brothers and sisters, children and parents, for cousins and nieces and nephews and grandparents and aunts and uncles, for in-laws and outlaws, and for my husband and grandchildren who light up my life.
Every once in a while the stars align and I get to experience these blessings all at once. A few months back we celebrated my parents’ 60th wedding anniversary at Bodega Bay. These are the times to remember.
I’m thankful for good friends and making memories that last forever.
I’m thankful for heavenly parents who know us and love us and are concerned for our welfare.
“Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;
Praise him, all creatures here below;
Praise him above, ye heav’nly host;
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost.”