Mother Falcon!

Mother Falcon “Alhambra” CD release concert
With opener: Graham Reynolds and the Golden Arm Trio doing Duke Ellington covers

Nearly transcendent night of music. The power of live music never ceases to amaze me. And this is the kind of music that fills your body and blows your mind and makes your heart soar. Strings and brass and piano and drums and even an accordion. The acoustics at Central Presbyterian Church is amazing as well, and they had a light show to enhance everything.

And Mother Falcon are all so YOUNG. Nothing gives me as much hope for the world as talented young musicians. And they were all switching instruments throughout. Extraordinary talent. I’m in love with them.

My heart is full. Good night.

(I can’t take.any.more.inspiration.this.weekend. And Nat and I are going to see Blue Man Group tomorrow? My head’s gonna explode.)

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A new productivity: Jane McGonigal’s Sunday Sermon

I saw this video awhile ago, but its message has stuck with me.

With our work ethics, we become super-busy people with endless to-do lists and a penchant for productivity (and a guilt for non-productivity).

Game designer and general superwoman Jane McGonigal in her “Sunday sermon” gives us a new frame to look at productivity. Instead of building our to-do lists based on tasks, can we instead base them on positive psychology’s 4 criteria for living a “flourishing” life?

  • Positive Emotion: Feel joy and bliss and curiosity, awe and wonder.
  • Relationships: Build social bonds. Spend time with people we care about.
  • Meaning: Be a part of something bigger than ourselves, be in service to something bigger than ourselves.
  • Achievement: Achieve something that truly matters in society.

When we create our to-do lists for the day, we can start to ask: What relationship do I want to build today? What positive emotion do I want to produce for myself or for others today? What’s the most meaningful service I could provide today? What will I feel really proud of doing today?

So what will you accomplish today?

[via brainpickings]

My Early Conversation Partners

I found this as a draft. Dunno why I never posted it, so posting it now.

family_reader_from_birth

Growing a Reader From Birth by Diane McGuinness walks the reader through the steps of language acquirement and development from pre-birth to learning to read.

The parents’ role is impactful at all stages but particularly during 2 and 3 when a child is developing memory skills, verbal social skills, and story grammar through direct conversations with caregivers. According to McGuinness and other researchers, parents tend to have communication styles that are either elaborative or repetitive. Elaborative conversations lead to better verbal and memory skills in children.

“Elaborative parents engage in more interactive dialogue, frame the sequences of episodes in descriptive language, and encourage the child to participate while they do this…For the repetitive mother, the purpose of the conversation is to get the child to supply…the answer the parent wants to hear.”

Not everyone grows up to magically become proficient conversationalists, nor natural storytellers. I don’t remember the conversations I had as a toddler, but they must have been good and plenty — and thinking of those forgotten conversations makes me happy and grateful.