Archives for posts with tag: piano

Been so busy last few months, happy we can make a stop at the senior home this morning. The boys used this time to practice their music and the seniors got to hear them play, a win-win situation for both!


Piano recitals back to back (last night with Ah Lo and tonight with Dai Bee). In the morning, I made the boys turkey and cheese sandwich (Grand Piano) and PBJ sandwich (piano keys) for breakfast. Just felt like making them when I got up this morning since it’s been awhile. Oh I miss playing with food!IMG_7120Untitled-3

Also came in the mail today was the children’s magazine that published one of Ah Lo’s poems. Coincidentally the poem they chose to publish is about the piano which goes perfectly with our music theme this weekend.


Ah Lo is taking lessons from his brother lately. Apparently the last few years, Ah Lo’s teacher didn’t touch any of the musicianship skills. Therefore, on Monday nights, Ah Lo would have a lesson with Dai Bee, training the ears, learning “notation” and tonal skills sight reading and how to execute the song. There are much to learn and at times, Dai Bee can be pretty tough on his brother. He will constantly test Ah Lo to see if he really understand what was taught. I enjoyed sitting in their lessons, might even learn a thing or two myself.


One of the two days Dai Bee and his friends performing at one of the two senior homes. img_5253

Dai Bee is taking on a new role starting this month! He’s a piano teacher now, teaching at beginning level and charging minimum wage. His first two students are his cousins who come weekly. While teaching, he’s also learning at the same time. We’ll see how far this goes.


Boys will be playing for the seniors this Christmas. They have been diligently practicing Carol of the Bells. What’s interesting is to see how Dai Bee teaches Ah Lo on sight seeing, rhythmical structure and the musicality (which is the most difficult). I pretend to be reading a book or looking at my phone, when I’m sole purpose is to act as a moderator. Or to ease the tension between the two. Both are learning and teaching at the same time. Dai Bee is teaching Ah Lo, while learning how to be a teacher. Ah Lo is learning his piece from his brother, while teaching his brother how to be patient. Good teamwork!


A Friday ritual.

A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week.

A simple, special, extraordinary moment.

A moment I want to pause, savor and remember – {this moment}


A Friday ritual.

A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week.

A simple, special, extraordinary moment.

A moment I want to pause, savor and remember – {this moment}


Not my kind of Sunday waking up at 7:30am, but again, this is what moms do for her kids.

Dai Bee expressed interest in learning to tune pianos. I started to research to see if there are any lessons he can take. There are some fee based online courses available, but not much options out there. We checked with his music theory teacher for recommendations. He gave us a name, who happens to work in the Conservatory of Music. Unfortunately, this piano tuner is on his way out, but was happy to show Dai Bee a thing or two (as a favor to Dai Bee’s Music Theory teacher).

That’s why we are here, at 8 am Sunday morning, because that’s the only time the piano tuner is available. He kept mentioning 5 minutes was all he got and that’s all we’ll get. But he went on and on, telling Dai Bee about the background and some history of the business. To consider oneself a pro, one must tune at least 600 pianos. It’s the type of business that you have to be all in or nothing. He gave Dai Bee some magazines and some materials he once used to teach to bring home. At the end, he was nice enough to bring us to the concert hall at the Conservatory. Dai Bee had a chance to play on the piano at the concert hall and enjoyed it tremendously.

After all the information presented to Dai Bee, I asked him if he’s still interested to learn to tune pianos. Yes, he is. We’ll see where we go from here.


Many parents often ask me what level Dai Bee is playing (piano). I never knew what to tell them. Apparently students take music examinations to determine the level they are playing.  These exams are supposedly great as a measure of the student’s progress. More entrenched in Asia and other parts of the world, these music exams are not as popular here. Last week I finally got a chance to ask Dai Bee’s piano teacher about his current level. At first the teacher was worried I might ask her to prepare Dai Bee for this exam. She was relieved when I told her that wasn’t the reason why I asked. She also gave me her reservations of preparing her students for these music exams. Studying for these exams is rigorous. Different levels require different set of skills. Besides taking sight-reading and aural tests, he also has to pass the some sort of theory exam. It is under tremendous pressure for the kid to pass because it takes months and months of practice. Knowing Dai Bee, he wouldn’t thrive in that kind of condition.

If she must answer me, he’s now playing a piece at the 8th or 9th level. That’s already good enough for me.