20 October 2009

My First Concert

Well, while everyone was off getting rained on in Hillsboro, Oregon or listening to Elder Bednar, in person!  I had my very first Concert!!

It was amazing to be performing with these other teachers. I have become more active in the Spokane Music Teacher's Association and that has opened doors for me. This summer I performed with other teachers at Becca's music camp and then this past weekend. These are associations that I am truley grateful for. I have learned so much and have been inspired to be more, for myself, my students and my collegues.

We played the Waltz from Faust. It's an Opera, but the waltz is the most famous and has been arranged for many different instruments. Our arrangement being for 2 painos, 8 hands. I played with 3 other ladies, my partner was Mary. We had so much fun! Although the other piano skipped a measure and threw Mary and I off, I hit all my runs and my trouble spots! That was good enough for me. I ordered a DVD and CD of it, and we had pictures taken just like professionals. Oh, wait, they consider themselves professionals! I felt honored to be considered their friend.

I wasn't as nervous as I thought I would be. Some of the others were. I decided that it was just like Recitals for my students. There is no more preparations that you can do, you perfrom how you practice and I felt it would turn out ok. And it was, thank goodness!!!

I played in the first half and the second half was one number. It was Rachmaninoff's Second Concerto, about 40 minutes long, duet. One piano playing the piano score and the second piano playing the orchestral reduction. It was fascinating to watch, anytime one part had  measures of rest, the pianist would change, so there was a rotating exchange of about 12-15 performers, I should have counted but didn't.

I enjoyed playing with Mary a lot. She wants me to do a duet with her for the Food Bank Benefit that she organizesm for Second Harvest. That is sometime early next year I think. She is amazing to play with.

09 October 2009

Jenn's Tomato Bisque

Tonight was out dinner group. This is what I made and posted on out dinner group blog. I (and my family) really liked this, and I even have non-tomato eaters in my family.

"Yes, I called it my tomato bisque because I totally made this up after browsing my recipe books and "wingin' it".

5 lbs. Tomatos
Olive oil
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
8 cups vegetable broth or bullion
3 cups Half & Half

Toppings: shredded chicken, saute'd mushrooms, cut avacados, cheese

1. Cut tomatos in quarters, and place open side down on a greased cookie sheet. Combine spices, sprinkle on top of tomatos. Drizzle with oilve oil. Bake in a 450 oven for 25-30 minutes.

2. When the edges start to brown and juices are being released, remove from oven. Let then cool slightly and remove skins.

3. In a large pot, combine vegetable broth with tomatos. Blend tomatos with hand blender or in batches in a blender or food processor. Slowly add half & half and blend together.

That is the bisque recipe. Then I treated it like a tortilla soup. Shredded chicken, saute'd mushroons, cut avacados, parmesan cheese. Place toppings in bottom of bowl, ladle soup on top. This does make a full pot, so if you have a small family, you might want to half it. I did discover, as my family ate the leftovers that it thickened up too, so yummy! Hope you all enjoyed it! Love, Jenn =)

08 October 2009

Catch Up

It has been a while and I decided that I can't play catch up, just start from where I am. We have had some great letters from Jacob and he was actually transferred today. His new area is Las Sendas, still part of Mesa. He sounds good and is excited to have a new area and people to work with.

My pictures for today are from this past weekend. Richy is marching with the Central Valley Marching Band. He is not really marching, he is in the pit and has to push a lot of equipment. I was ableto chaperone this weekend, which is always fun. These are the warmups for Pre-lims. Richy is sporting the new uniforms, they hang the gauntlets on the back, so they hook them on the back to help keep their form.

With his back to Mead's performance, he starts his focus time!

Richy and Brandon, on the field, ready to go.....

They performed well, not their best, but hopefully they got all the nerves shook out. CV scored ok, came in 2nd in the Prelims with Mead ahead by 1.2! As the kids finished, it started to sprinkle.....and sprinkle....and sprinkle....then rain...rain....rain....then pour...pour....pour. It poured for hours and in the end CV & Mead pulled out. It was too dangerous with our equipment and electronics, and the turf was flooding, I think Parker didn't want kids to get hurt (sprained ankled, or break something, damage instruments, etc) in Tri-cities, when we have bigger fish to catch later in the month. Pouring! Pouring! Pouring! Who knew it ever rained there.