This photo from 4 years ago turned up in my Facebook timeline this morning.
Learning to play ukulele, playing and singing with other people, has been a challenging and rewarding self-directed learning project for me. And there have been seasons – when I first started I was excitedly practicing every day and meeting with my mostly homeschool mom friends weekly with our matching blue dolphin ukes. We went to Uke Festivals and workshops. I was so excited I wrote a song and created a photo series I call Dr. Uke says…to show what songs I was working on and how I was feeling. The group was evolving, I started working on the books, and mom’s illness progressed. The season and my learning journey shifted. Continue reading “Seasons of a Self-directed Learning Journey”
Each day I try to write at least ten things I am thankful for. It started as a way to check-in when a friend and I got together for coffee when I was a twenty-something, living in Seattle, and trying to figure out life.
I wasn’t sure what I really wanted to be when I grew up and she was trying to get into med school. I was dealing with my family’s issues with alcohol, divorce and finances and her mom was in the end stages of breast cancer. We were both overwhelmed with all the troubles in the world we were becoming aware of: poverty, lack of social justice and inequality.
First we would list ten things that were troubling us, using a combination of writing and sketches. Then we shifted to ten things we were grateful for. The shift in energy was significant. I realized if I would focus on the ten good things each day, I’d feel a lot better about all the uncertainty in life. Continue reading “Start Your Day with Some Gratitude!”
Last week I attended a presentation by Dave Iriguchi of the Happy Ukulele held at the Davis Maker Space.
I had the pleasure of meeting Dave when our Uke group attended the Reno Uke fest for the first time in March 2012. As a brand new ukulele player, I was in awe of his handmade instruments,which I consider musical works of art. Or works of musical art. I was really excited to hear about the process of creation.
Dave talked about his ukulele making process, his designs, innovations, tools and philosophy. He gave details that went right over my non-builder head, but I could see other makers in the room taking notes. Even if I couldn’t follow all the details, I was entranced. It was fascinating to hear his story and see and try the beautiful instruments. Continue reading “How to Make a Happy Ukulele”