the right spin

Occasionally I get it right.

This afternoon, Opie came home from school and almost immediately plunked herself in front of the piano. She practiced her pieces, her cadences, and played some old favorites. She even called me over several times to demonstrate a special piece or to show how she had something memorized.

This was all great. I’m quite happy she is enjoying this and I love peeking in the living room and seeing her engrossed in her music.

The only thing was, we had a tight schedule this afternoon. She had bypassed her usual snack and break time. By the time she finished up with piano, it was late enough that I needed her to get started on oboe, or there wouldn’t be time before we had to go our separate ways.

I was about to tell her “you need to practice now” but something clicked in my brain. Instead, out came “You were just awesome on the piano. I need to hear you come be awesome on the oboe too.” As a transition I offered her 10 minutes of game time on my phone — a practicing reward given in advance. She got a little break before starting, but she knew she would begin practicing at the end of the 10 minutes.

Yes, I was still telling her she needed to practice, but this version went down a whole lot better, and I got to hear her awesome oboe before I went off to my meeting.

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