As some of you blog readers undoubtedly already know, I have the world's greatest day job. In addition to my career as a musical theatre performer, I also teach infants and preschoolers in Mommy-and-Me music classes at a wonderful company called Hands On! A Musical Experience. I teach Monday through Saturday, 4 classes each morning, for children aged 4 months to about 4 years. Each teacher learns how to play every instrument in the orchestra and we allow each child the opportunity to put their "hands on" (see, get it!) while we play the instrument, making connections about the physics of sounds, the difference in types of instruments, and hopefully cultivating a love of music, and perhaps a desire to play aninstrument some day.
So I am very grateful for this donation, from one of my dear sweet infants, Walter.
Sweet Walter with his dad and mom
Now, how can you not love a little face like that, and the fact that his name is Walter, just melts my heart. In Manhattan we get a lot of crazy names. Did you know in 2007 the second most common boy's name in Manhattan was Jayden? Pushing out Daniel, and right behind Michael. I've had Lazer, Blue... so Walter just melts my heart. And the fact that he comes with his mother and their fellow apartment-infant, Evelyn, comes as well with her nanny, they are like an old married couple, who arrive side-by-side in their strollers. Walter and Evelyn.
It is hard to say what these little babies take in from class, and I am fond of saying that you just never know who they are going to turn out to be. Perhaps Walter is the next great Oboist. Or perhaps he will be a computer programmer. But the time that he gets to spend with his mom, while she can take a little break from being "On" (and then it's MY turn to be "on"), means that he gets 40 minutes to be loved and entertained, Mom hopefully leaves with a baby ready for a nap, and I get to see his sweet little smile. It's a win-win situation.
Walter's mother has run a marathon before, and she is working at one of the aid tents this year for the NYC Marathon, so it is my goal NOT to have to see her during the marathon. But it is so sweet of her to donate to Free Arts and my marathon goal. Having been there, she understands what it's like to push your body to the limit, in addition to pushing your friends and family to help you financially! :) I am very grateful for the help of Walter and his family, and it is always a pleasure to see him every week.
Maybe Walter will be a computer programming, marathon-running Oboe player when he grows up? You just never know! He will certainly always know he is loved, of that I am sure.