If you struggle to make it through a musical phrase (or a measure!) without taking a breath, this video is for you! Click below to get started!!
While you're at it ---> Get the free printable to help you while you practice!
Here's an EASY scale routine you can do every day to help you play comfortably in any key signature--AND effortlessly memorize your scales. It's a WIN/WIN!
1. Pick 2-4 scales today.
2. Choose a tempo that you can play correctly and evenly.
3. Repeat each scale using the articulation patterns (see link below).
3. Fill in your tempos on the weekly scale tracker (link below).
4. Repeat tomorrow with 2-4 new scales!
If you implement this routine into your daily practice, you will
Click here to get the full guide, and watch the video down below for a more in-depth explanation and demonstration!
See you soon-- Happy Practicing!!
Let me just be the first one to say... setting goals is scary. But have you ever stopped to think about why?
For me (especially on the flute), I'm scared to set goals because I'm afraid I won't reach them. Or that I won't reach them perfectly.
I'd be willing to bet that, as a flute player, you struggle with perfectionism as well--and I want to encourage you by saying this:
Perfect is the enemy of Done.
That's right. If you're like me, the pressure of doing something perfectly (like setting AND reaching a goal) will actually inhibit me from getting anything done at all.
So instead of focusing on Perfect... let's focus on Progress.
Let's say you set a goal. You make sure it is a SMART goal (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Reasonable, Time-bound). You even make a plan of when you're going to work on your goal.
But when you get to the goal deadline, you didn't achieve everything you set out to. You didn't reach perfection.
In this moment, you have two choices. You can either beat yourself up for not being "perfect"... or you can take a look at your progress.
Consider the latter:
Think about where you were before you began working toward your goal. And then think about where you are now. What kind of improvements have you seen? Chances are you have made some really nice progress--which is AMAZING. Setting a goal and working toward it helped you move so much further than if you hadn't set a goal at all.
During the month of September, my students and I have set several SMART goals. Here are a few examples:
So what about you?
Even though September is winding down, you still have another week or two to accomplish something that's been on your to-do list for a while. I KNOW you can make progress toward you goals--all you have to do is write it down and start.
If you decided on a goal to crush, let me know what it is in the comments, or take a picture and tag me on Instagram! I can't wait to hear from you.
Are you new to the flute?? Such an exciting time!! In this video I'll guide you through all of the steps you need to know from opening your flute case for the first time to putting it together and finally to holding it correctly.
Have you learned any other assembling and holding tips from your teacher? Leave them in the comments below!
Hello Fabulous Flute Friends!
I don't know about you, but I have been on the STRUGGLE bus lately! It's taken me a solid three weeks since the school year began to find a workable routine for practicing, working, exercising, and all the rest of the things.
Have you had a tough transition as well?
Last night (Monday night), I finally got fed up. I decided that instead of binge watching YouTube and Netflix that I was going to BED with a BOOK and that I was going to get up EARLY. I also blocked my schedule out for the rest of the week with all the things I needed to do.
So far, I'm doing really well--I hope I can keep it up during this busy week! If you want to find out my method for blocking my time, you can ready my previous blog: How to Whip Your Busy Life Into Shape
In other news, I had a pretty exciting week last week starting my studio re-model, playing (and dancing with my daughter...) at the EcoArts Fair down at Cooper's Landing with Howard & Smyth, and I bought an adorable Ocarina that was hand-painted in Peru!
Somehow, I have to find quality time to practice the flute, because I have another Howard & Smyth gig coming up on Friday where we need to have 3 hours of music ready for a dinner party. Three hours may seem like a long time, but we're having no trouble filling it with all sorts of showtunes, pop covers, classical pieces, tangos and so much more. My binder is jam-packed!
Also on my radar my very first solo concerto performance in February where I'll play the Vivaldi Piccolo Concerto with my chamber orchestra, The Southside Philharmonic here in Jefferson City.
Talk about terrified!!
I'm so excited to be have the opportunity, but wow! I have some major prep work to do. My goal right now is to memorize the second movement (with ornamentations) by the end of September. Wish me luck!
You'll also notice a couple of other things on my stand-- my Moyse De la Sonorite for long tones, and a Handel sonata collection that I'm looking at for a student. I can't forget my scales and articulation studies as well-- whew!
How was your week last week? Are you preparing for any upcoming performances? I'd love to hear about all of it, so leave me a comment below!
Until next time...
Practicing is hard... Can I get an amen??
It's especially hard when you have no idea where to start or what to do. It took me a LOOONG time to settle on a routine that a) wasn't boring and b)was productive.
In today's video, I'm going to share that routine with you--so grab your flute and let's practice together!
Does your double tonguing need help? Here's an easy articulation workout you can incorporate into your practice! Get ready to see major results in just a week or two. Don't forget to start slow and use a metronome!
Have you been looking for a good way to track your practice routine and stay motivated? I have tried many different practice journal methods over the years, and this seems to be the way that works the best for me:
Write down everything I need to practice--including daily exercises like tone, scales, and etudes.
Check off each day of the week that I practice it.
Make notes at the bottom with anything that I want to explore further, or random thoughts that pop up while I'm practicing.
It's super simple, and it keeps me focused when my distracted brain wants to do everything but practice. Like Insta stories. Or watching a YouTube video. Or answering a text. Or eating. You know... the usual.
Here's your very own Weekly Practice Tracker -- I hope it works for you!!
Leave a comment below with any practice tracking hacks that you love--the rest of us would love to hear them!
Today, I want to share a topic that’s near and dear to my heart—time management. And I say “near and dear” because I’m being SO sarcastic. I have struggled with time management and low motivation most of my life, and there are days when it still gets the best of me.
Fortunately, over the years I’ve consumed books, blogs, podcasts, YouTube videos—you name it—all on how to manage time more effectively. And you know what? Some of it worked, and some of it didn’t. I’m going to walk you through what is really working for me these days, and I hope you will take bits (or all!) of it and incorporate it into your life.
How to Whip Your Busy Life into Shape (in 8 easy steps!)
So… You probably know all about Marking Time…. But have you ever tried Blocking Time?
And no… It has nothing to do with Marching Band.
*huge sigh of relief*
Yes, friend. Blocking Time is something that will literally Change. Your. Life.
If you let it.
Here’s what it is:
Blocking time = making a list of everything you have to/want to do and using a calendar to when you will do it and how long it will take you.
Sounds simple enough, right?
That’s because it is. And it’s a great way to make sure that you’re not binge-watching YouTube and shoving Fire Doritos in your mouth while you should be practicing that killer etude you still can’t play.
So how bout it? Let’s get stuff done!
1. Grab a pen and paper (or your planner) and make four columns:
2. Fill in each column: Use this handy time blocking worksheet to help.
3. Open up your Google Calendar, iCal, or whatever you use to keep track of your schedule.
4. Just for this week, make time blocks for everything in your lists from columns 1 and 2.
5. Use the open times on your calendar to plug in items from column 3 so you are sure to spend time this week working toward your goals.
6. Do you have any time left? If not, adjust things so you can spend time each day doing at least one fun thing you want to do. Block it in your calendar like you did in steps 4 and 5.
7. As you go through your week, try to stick to your time blocks. Unexpected things will happen and throw your schedule out of whack, but just do your best. Even if you don’t get everything done, you’ll accomplish more than you would if you didn’t block your time at all.
8. Revisit your columns and calendar every Sunday night to block time for the upcoming week. This will set you up for success—and you will feel so much calmer knowing what you’re supposed to be doing, and when.
And I’m betting you’ll get mad props from your parents. Couldn’t hurt, right?
Overwhelmed by your busy school schedule? Leave a comment on the blog and let me know about your biggest time-blocking challenges--I bet you’re not alone!
You know what is equally as hard to whip into shape? A practice routine! If you want some help in this area as well, check out my latest video where I’ll show you how I divide up my practice time and hold myself accountable. There’s also a free downloadable Weekly Practice Tracker that you won’t want to miss.
Have a fabulous day--- and Happy Practicing!!
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