Hello Dear Ones,
I just read the note from Heather on my guestbook and it made me so happy. Heather is a graduating senior in Portland, Maine who participated in one of my songwriting workshops at her elementary school when she was just little. She wrote to tell me what happy memories my music brought her, and that made me feel all mushy and sentimental.
I first began "officially" writing songs with children in 1995, with the first graders in Mrs. Forest's class at Maple Avenue Elementary School in Goffstown, NH. I was a classroom aide then, working on my Masters Degree in Education.
Now those kids in the original "Forest Chorus" are graduating, and so is my own daughter, Emma, who was a first-grader at Bartlett Elementary school across town that year and who had inspired my very first song writing for children when she was just a baby in my arms. And so are all the first graders who attended my concerts and workshops all over New England that year.
So, to Emma, Heather, the Forest Chorus, and all the other children I sang for that year, I have a message:
Don't Ever Let Go of Your Dreams!!!
But....don't just dream...find every way you can to make them come true. I wanted to be a singer since I was a little girl, and even though I haven't wound up to be a famous pop singer, which was my original dream, I have never given up on music. I have pursued every avenue I could to keep on singing and have my music heard, and those avenues took me through rock music, piano lounges, country bands, and finally, to making music with children. I never dreamed back then that I would have the career I have now, but look how blessed I have been, to have been in the lives of all of these children. There is at least one moment during EVERY concert that I close my eyes and say a silent "thank you" to God for allowing me to do this for a living, and for helping me live in a musical world.
Now, here's the part that might make you laugh. In 1967, when I was eight years old, I saw the ORIGINAL Batman movie (the one based on the old TV show). It was a pretty stupid movie, but in it, Batman said something that struck me, even at that young age. I wrote it on my binder cover every year through elementary, jr. high and high school, and it was my senior message in my yearbook. I leave you, class of 2007, with the words of Batman, because I believe that no one has ever expressed this thought so eloquently. Please take it to heart, and make your dreams come true:
"After all, Robin....of what use is a dream, if not a blueprint for courageous action?"
Be courageous, class of 2007!