Select Page
I’m starting a new series on my blog today. One that I hope will inspire you both in and out of the classroom. Each month, I’ll be sharing a list of my favorite things. The list will include a variety, such as fun t-shirt designs, songs that I’ve been loving, apps to help de-stress, and the music education projects I work on that are near and dear to my heart. I really hope you’ll discover some new favorites along the way too!

LIFESTYLE

Knee Pillow
For as long as I can remember, I’ve woken up to back pain. After years of failed attempts at solving the problem (and a few visits to the doctor), you’ll understand why I found the solution so shamefully obvious; a knee pillow. That’s right, a chunk of foam with a cushy strap was the answer. This one from Amazon has been going strong for over a month now, and the cover made it through the wash without any problems.



Nerdy Tees & Hoodies
My nerdy, little heart went pitter-patter the moment I spotted this t-shirt on Teepublic.

I first heard of this company from a fellow Dragon Con attendee in Atlanta this summer.

The benefits are that you can find just about any nerd-niche you can dream of, such as a mix of the TARDIS with the Dark Side of the Moon cover art.

The con is that your first purchase is a huge gamble. They don’t allow returns (except for defects). So if the size and fit aren’t what you wanted, you’re stuck with it. Look at their size charts and fabric blends carefully. Then, once you find the blend and fit that works for you (and you like the way it launders), write it down. Now that I’ve found my favorite size and style, I can enjoy the cheaper price tag without the risk.

TECH

Headspace
I first heard about Headspace from NPR, where the creator discussed the science behind how meditation can help decrease stress, elevate your mood, and aide in sleeping.

I often talk about the importance of maintaining all areas of our health, not just physical. I’ve not been meditating for very long, but I can already sense a shift in how I view my thoughts and feelings.

OFFICE

Giant Paper Clips
I’ve been using this giant paper clip to mark my place in my planner. I can quickly flip between my monthly and weekly views. It’s way more effective than the wimpy magnetic bookmark I was using before. Simple, but effective.

 

FOOD

What list would be complete without food? Lately, I’ve been cooking a lot of soup in my crockpot. It’s a phase I go through every fall, and every fall I’m reminded of a quote attributed to Beethoven,

“Whoever tells a lie is not pure of heart, and such a person can not cook a clean soup.”
 

I like to think that Beethoven and I would’ve gotten along well, through our shared love of soup and long walks in nature.

One soup I’m positive he’d like is the slow cooker chili from The Complete Cooking For Two Cookbook from America’s Test Kitchen. My husband isn’t a soup-lover, so I double the batch and freeze some of it for my lunch the next week. I also regularly make this Stuffed Pepper Soup, which has the added bonus of being healthy. 

 

In full disclosure, I use white rice instead. I steam it in my rice cooker and then add it to the rest of the soup once it’s finished cooking.

 

ENTERTAINMENT

My choices in entertainment have kept me in a good mood all week long. I’ve learned over time that I simply cannot watch violent/depressing shows for a long period of time. Even when I know it’s fiction, I still feel too much of what the characters feel. Hence, I’ve been looking for more feel-good shows to prepare for the gloomy winter.
This isn’t a feel-good show necessarily, but the high and low points are balanced well. Plus, the intro music just makes me happy every time.
This is one of those older shows that I cycle through occasionally. The soundtrack is great, and I love the off-beat humor. It also has one of the best musical episodes I’ve ever heard (written by Avenue Q), called “My Musical”.Delirious Love 

This is one of many songs I’ve grown to love thanks to Scrubs. This is also why I own a CD of The Blanks, but I digress…
Delirious Love is a song by Neil Diamond, from his 12 songs album. I love keeping it in my Friday playlist or putting it on when I need some motivation.

 

 

MUSIC EDUCATION

My Basics Bundle has been in my store since August, but my love for it has only increased over time. It’s everything I wished I could’ve had years ago, and based on the feedback, other teachers feel the same way. It would’ve made introducing and reviewing concepts SO much easier.
It’s hard for me to pick my favorite feature of the bundle, so instead, I’ll give you my top two:
  1. The presentations guide students through the sights, sounds, and feel of each concept using real-life examples. They see steady beat by watching a pendulum clock. They hear steady beat by listening to a heart beat. They feel steady beat by clapping along with the music. And these are only a few of the examples. I love making connections with music to everyday life.
  2. It includes an interactive quiz, making it an all-in-one resource. You don’t have to worry about how to assess or check for understanding. It’s already done for you.
This post wouldn’t be complete without a shout-out to Elizabeth from Organized Chaos. She was the inspiration behind this new series on my blog. You can read about her monthly favorites HERE.
That’s it for this month’s favorites. I’m already looking forward to doing this again in November! I’d love to know what you think of my list. Do you share some of the favorites on my list? If so, please tell me about it! I’d love to read your thoughts or hear your recommendations in the comments section below.