Music, Uncategorized

Tuesday Tunes 

What have I been listening to this week? Amid the repeated requests for the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Theme, the Hot Dog Dance, and Paw Patrol, I have managed to get some “Mommy Music” in as well, a la Beauty and the Beast! 

I’ve been digging the soundtrack from the new live-action movie, especially Evermore (confession: I listen to this song repeatedly.  Both the Dan Stevens version and the Josh Groban cover; both are fantastic and wonderfully emotional without being copy-cats of each other). 

If you’re like me and on a too-tight-to-buy-music-budget, good news: YouTube has a playlist of the full soundtrack! You can listen by clickingthe link here.

My faves: 

  • The three prologue tracks 
  • Gaston
  • Days in the Sun
  • Evermore 


What are you listening to this week? Do you have a fave on this album I didn’t mention? Leave a comment and tell me about it! 


Giving Thanks – Day 7

I promise, I’m doing my best to not fall far behind!  I’ve started falling asleep doing almost any sitting-down task if I try to stay awake past 10 pm now.  Maybe a combo of the time change and an early-rising baby?  Who knows!

But anyways, on to yesterday’s thankfulness. It’s a longer list, so I’ll go in order of how the things came to mind chronologically through the day.

Yesterday, I was thankful for the weather finally feeling cool, like autumn!

It definitely means more outdoor time for us.  Fall is my absolute favorite season!

I’m thankful that something I thought could be a medical problem is actually nothing.

Hi, I’m a slightly-hypochondriac Web-MD-searching-expert Wet-Ones-slinging-germaphobe.  The Google actually diagnosed me correctly, but it’s always nice to have a real person confirm that everything is a-ok.

I’m thankful for my students, and that I have the means and ability to teach piano.

It brings so much joy to my heart when I see people enjoying making music.  And when they have fun or make progress, it gives me so much more drive to practice for myself.  After all, since I tell them how important it is to practice, I need to set the example, hold myself accountable and practice, too!   And on a related note…

I’m thankful for a hubby who encourages the buying of more piano books for myself.

My latest to rehearse are a Star Wars: The Force Awakens book (fairly complicated, but lovely arrangements) and a Frozen book.  (Oh, don’t judge me.  The music is good, it’s the last 30 minutes of the plot for which I harbor feelings of “UGH”).


That’s it for yesterday!  What are you thankful for today?



The Catholic Housewife

40 Days of Doing

Fat Tuesday is behind us, Ash Wednesday and its new hashtag #ashtag have passed, and we are now fully in Lent.  Maybe you’ve decided to give something up for Lent.  It’s only 40 days, right?

That’s not so long to go without desserts. (Back in my gluten-eating days, I did this right before my mom’s Girl Scout cookie order came in.  Worst.  Decision.  Ever.)

Or without soda.  (Also did this.  And as a result, I now rarely drink soda, so it’s not worth giving up.  It’s not really a sacrifice for me anymore.)

Or Facebook.  (Haha.  Hahahahaha!   Kudos to those of you who can do this.  I am far too long distance from almost everyone I know to give this one up.  Since I actually use facebook to keep in touch, communicate, and belong to active groups, this is NOT going to happen.)

As a Catholic, I grew up in a home where giving something up for Lent was pretty normal from the time I was about seven or eight.  In addition to fasting on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, I’d abstain from eating meat on Ash Wednesday and all Fridays as well.

Seafood was okay.  OMNOMNOM!
Seafood was okay. OMNOMNOM!

By the time I was a teenager, my family had finally discovered most of my sister’s allergies, so our weekly Lenten runs to Captain D’s were no more.  Luckily, I had a car and could get it myself, most days.

This probably wasn't a real sacrifice.  I wanted to eat here every day.
This probably wasn’t a real sacrifice. I wanted to eat here every day.

Then I went to college, and things changed again.  Especially since I was the only Catholic student at a small Southern Baptist college.  My closest friends knew that I was Catholic, and that I went to Mass at the only Catholic church in town (30 minute drive one way!).  I never stopped going to Mass in college, but I didn’t do anything to show that my faith was anything other than nondenominational Christianity.  So for Lent, I decided to really challenge myself.

Instead of giving something up, I decided to DO something.   Continue reading “40 Days of Doing”

30 Day Challenge, Magic Kingdom, Music

Least-favoite Disney song – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 13

Oh, how fitting that the worst of the worst should be on the thirteenth day of the challenge.  (Though really, shouldn’t today’s question be ‘what Haunted Mansion ghost is your favorite?’)

This is again an easy choice, but one that I know even die-hard Disney fans–the kind that would have a favorite HM ghost–would probably agree with me on.


It’s A Small World

Oops, did I make the title blood-red by 'accident?'
Oops, did I make the title blood-red by ‘accident?’

I feel that I must again state that I did not have the pleasure of visiting the happiest place on earth until about two years ago, so I did not tire of this song from too many rides as a child.  No, my loathing of this song came from its unwanted appearance on “Disney’s Best Songs” CD’s that I listened to growing up.  One moment you think, ahh, how lovely!  Bella Notte, The Second Star the the Right, When You Wish Upon A Star….


The first room is cute.  The first five rooms, I'll even admit, are cute.  By the time I reached the tenth, looked to the sky and cried, "I'll talk, I'll talk, just make it stop!!"
The first room is cute. The first five rooms, I’ll even admit, are cute. By the time I reached the tenth, looked to the sky and cried, “I’ll talk, I’ll talk, just make it stop!!”

Okay, so the ride wasn’t that bad.  The song is still the most annoying song I have ever heard, which, as a music major who has had to listen to a lot of modern, cutting-edge academic “music” (aka noises in patterns), is saying something.

My husband knows that this is the song to sing when anything else is in my head, since its aural stench is so strong that it takes up all available auditory room in the human brain.

Look, even Disney knows that no one likes their song.

Why else would they make this shirt?
Why else would they make this shirt?

People love to hate this song.  It gives park-goers a camaraderie, a camaraderie usually found only in the annoyance of waiting for an hour in the still Florida heat for the parades to come by.

Now, don’t think that I have a problem with the kum-ba-yah sentiment in this song.  It’s cool.  I willingly put forth that I am the first person to enjoy and even tear up a little at the small-world element in IllumiNations.

Why can't we all get along? (Sniffle, sniffle.)
Why can’t we all get along? (Sniffle, sniffle.)

But the singing dolls… Look, Mr. Disney, we all have a slight problem with dolls moving on their own.  We grew up watching The Twilight Zone and know that if dolls move by forces unseen, we’re all doomed to die.

Does no one else remember this?
Does no one else remember this?
Or worse, this?
Or worse, this?
There is a good reason that ventriloquist dummy is the scariest part of the Tower of Terror.
There is a good reason that ventriloquist dummy is the scariest part of the Tower of Terror.

And, of course, it being some anniversary of this ride, not only can’t you escape the song, but there are DOLLS.

That SING.

Dolls, dolls, everywhere!
Dolls, dolls, everywhere!


Okay, so those dolls are pretty cute.  And, I’ll admit, I love pretty dolls, and have my own older collection of American Girl Dolls packed away who are pretty.  But I still get creeped out by ventriloquist dummies (Except for Achmed the Dead Terrorist.  Him and his buddies are okay, minus that weird dude with the Prius.)

But I hate that song.

It has to go.






30 Day Challenge, Music

Favorite Villain Song – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 12

Ahh, another easy day for this challenge!

There are a lot of good villain songs in the Disney-verse.  (Though I must admit, my recent realization that Jafar really doesn’t have his own personal song made me kind of sad.)

I have two honorable mentions:

Poor Unfortunate Souls – The Little Mermaid

"I'll admit that in the past I've been a nasty, they weren't kidding when they called me, well, a witch."
“I’ll admit that in the past I’ve been a nasty, they weren’t kidding when they called me, well, a witch.”

Props to Ursula for monologuing only to her minions, and not to the heroine of the story.

Also, I just love how low of an alto voice you need to sing this song.  It’s just fun to sing.

Friends on the Other Side – The Princess and the Frog

Honestly, all I ever remember is "Bum, bum, bum, bum, bum, bum, bum, ARE YA READY!??"
Honestly, all I ever remember is “Bum, bum, bum, bum, bum, bum, bum, ARE YA READY!??”

As far as villains go, Dr. Facilier is one of my favorites to meet in Disney Parks.  Probably him and Gaston.

Really this is one of my top faves because of the detail in the animation during the song sequence.  Look closely at the picture.  See the difference in the wallpaper that is in the Dr.’s shadow, and the wallpaper that’s in the light?  Yup, those are skulls and crossbones.

Plus it’s just a catchy song.  But the reason it doesn’t win is because Voodoo and calling on evil spirits is creepy.  My first reaction to watching the movie was “Holy canolli, Disney people, that sh*t is real!! This is a kids’ movie!”

Mother Knows Best – Tangled

At this point we all know that I love Tangled, and find Mother Gothel to be a spectacular villain.

I love this song partially for Gothel’s singing (what a voice!), but mostly because we go from this…

"Skip the drama, stay with mama!"
“Skip the drama, stay with mama!”

…to this.

"If he's lying, DON'T come crying.  MOTHER knows best!"
“If he’s lying, DON’T come crying. MOTHER knows best!”

What a demonstration of character building, and showing how the villain can develop from annoying and bad to evil and bad.

And now the winner of today’s category is…

Be Prepared – The Lion King

You want a song to motivate you to do housework?

I’ve found, surprisingly, that this one works better than “I’ll Make a Man Out of You.”

Scar’s got the best dramatic flair.  And Jeremy Irons actually sung his part, which is a huge plus.

It’s another case of the villain talking up his plan, but still being smart enough to not monologue to his enemy, the good guy.

What’s your favorite Villain song?

30 Day Challenge, Music

Favorite Love Song – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 11

At last!  A day of the challenge that is really easy.

Technically, I See the Light is a love song, but it is also about finding a dream.  And since it is my favorite song in yesterday’s post, I’ve picked another love song that is just lovely.

Love Goes On-Robin Hood

I know what you’re thinking.  “Man, this girl really likes her obscure Disney!”

Which I do.

But this song has always been a favorite, and one that comes to mind whenever I think “Disney Love Song.”

Honorable mentions:

Bella Notte-Lady & the Tramp

So This Is Love-Cinderella

A Whole New World-Aladdin

Kiss the Girl-The Little Mermaid (only because I like to squack Scuttle’s part)

Outside of Ariel's Grotto.
30 Day Challenge, Autism, Music

Music, Autism & a Favorite Song – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 10

There is a very important blogging lesson I have learned: when one takes on a challenge that is supposed to have you “do ____ for _____ number of days, all in a row, and don’t skip a day!…” you’re going to skip days.  Whether it’s been an exercise challenge, a writing challenge, anything, there will be days that you have to skip, for one reason or another (like, say, road trips that take all day, National Novel Writing Month, or Thanksgiving turkeys that are completely frozen even though they’ve been thawing for two extra days… to be completely non-specific, of course).

But enough about why this 30 Day challenge is turning out to be a 2 Month challenge!  Let’s go on to the hardest question on this list:

Favorite Disney Song

I know a lot of people who would not have a hard time with this question.  Thank goodness there are four categories of songs in this challenge, so I can whittle my list down a little bit.  But here’s just a tiny bit about my life, so you can understand my dilemma.

I grew up listening to and watching almost every Disney sing-along video cassette that was ever made.

I'm old enough to say that these videos here have the "new" style of covers.
I’m old enough to say that these videos here have the “new” style of covers.

As far back as I can remember, my little sister has had rather severe autism.  Growing up, Disney movies made her happy, but I believe that back then, it had more to do with the music than with the stories.  My sister would Continue reading “Music, Autism & a Favorite Song – 30 Day Disney Challenge: Day 10”