Hi! It’s me! Lily!

So this morning I went to church.  You know, like usual.  This time, they talked about fallen soldiers and stuff.

I’ll be honest, I don’t get it.

I mean…  Jesus didn’t seem like much of a fighter, did he?

Oh well.  I guess death stinks no matter who dies.

But there were a few veterans in the audience, and the pastor thanked them, and talked about sacrifice and stuff.  I don’t really understand that topic, but…  I guess it’s good that they did what they believe in?

It seems to be important to Dave, too.  He’s never really told me why.

And I know my “benefactor” is pretty high up in the military too…

Ah well.

So after church I came home and went right to practicing again, and Jack came over with some chocolate!  Bless him!  And I don’t mean that in the sarcastic southern way!  I munched on some chocolate and then he listened to me practice.

He said I’m really good… he doesn’t know how to play anything like that.

I blushed a little.

He said it was hot.

I blushed a lot more.

He said he’s glad my fingers are strong.

I think I was radiating heat.


He seemed enraptured though, that was really sweet of him.  I’m sure I’ll feel the same once he figures out what he wants to do.

In fact, he even pointed out a couple of places where he thought something would sound better… and he was right!  Maybe he’s got an ear for it.

We’re also still preparing for the big picnic tomorrow.  It’s going to be lots of fun!!!  I may even not practice!  Oh who am I kidding, I’m gonna practice.

Love you all!!! ❤

Hi! It’s me! Lily!!!

Today, we had our first real rehearsal.

And it was…  very interesting, actually.

So when I arrived they’d already been rehearsing for about an hour, and he introduced me (again), and said I was going to be the soloist.  And I sat down.  There was a lot of stopping and starting – sometimes he had some feedback for me, but mostly I was just along for the ride and helping them get used to playing with a soloist.

And it was such a different experience for me, too.  You remember last year when I accompanied Liz at her recital?  It was like that, but a lot louder.  I don’t know how else to explain it.  When the orchestra got going, they were almost overwhelming, but pianos are loud too.

We didn’t actually play all the way through any movement, but he kind of jumped back and forth through the music.  We mostly practiced making sure we were all in sync, that we had the cues right, and all that kind of thing.  He had me play all the way through the cadenza so they’d know when they were supposed to come in, and we went right through the coda, and… wow.  It’s so different with an orchestra.  And with several dozen people just patiently watching while you plow through a fairly technically complex part of the music.

But I think we can do this.

Afterwards, he asked me why I sounded different.  And I told him about yesterday, about what the concert pianist told me, and he sighed.  “I wish I could get that through to the orchestra”, he said.  “It could sound so much better, but they still haven’t figured out that it’s not about the notes.”

“Yesterday, he told me I’m seventeen, I know nothing,” I said, matter-of-factly.

He laughed.  “Well, I might have been a bit more tactful, but…  maybe a little less tact is the right thing.  We have another rehearsal without you, so… maybe I’ll use that.”

I giggled.

Next week we have a couple of rehearsals, and then the dress rehearsal is Friday.  I hope this works out.  I’d be so embarrassed if I screw this up.

Anyway, in more teenagery news, I stayed over at Liz’s last night, and we had some fun eating chocolate and playing board games.  She always decimates me at Scrabble, but I’m pretty good at some of the more chance based games.  I also rehearsed her piece with her and she’s coming along fine too.  I told her what the concert pianist told me and she just nodded.  “They’ve been telling me that since I was little, and I still haven’t entirely got it.  It’s the hardest thing about music.”

I guess they don’t tell you that, you really have to discover that for yourself.

Is it that way for everything you learn, really?  You don’t know how much you don’t know until you’re good enough to know how much you don’t know?  And only then do you start to become a master at it?

Maybe so.

We’re getting ready for the big picnic on Monday.  Everyone’s invited.  We’re going to commandeer a park.  We’ve actually invited most of the church, too.  We’ve got all sorts of grills lined up, several dad-types (including Dave and Crystal’s father) to do the grilling, and quite a few of the women are cooking up fixins’.  It’s going to be a thing.  I can’t wait.

I’m not going to the waterpark though until after the performance.  I’m not risking an injury.

Anyway.  Gotta go.  More practice tomorrow.

Love you all!!! ❤

Hi! It’s me! Lily!

And I’m a little depressed.  But…  not the bad kind.  Let me explain.

So today I asked my piano teacher for some help with the Schumann piece I’m working on.  I have the notes memorized, but… but it doesn’t feel quite right yet.  I’m not comfortable with it, if that makes sense.

So I went over to her house, and she introduced me to someone.  A concert pianist!  A real life concert pianist!  Not Martha Argerich or Wibi Soerjadi or Lang Lang, but if you guessed those, you’d be in that caliber!  So he sat me down and had me play.

I didn’t get past the first 30 bars or so when he stopped me.

“Lily,” he said, “What does this music mean?”

I was confused.  What was he talking about?  It was music.  I play it and it sounds good.  I think I play all the notes right and I’m okay with phrasing and stuff –

“No, Lily… what does it mean?  I mean, how does it make you feel when you play it?  Does each note fascinate you?  Do you listen to a specific note change and marvel at how good it sounds?  How old are you?”


“So young,” he said, almost wistfully.  “So young.  You know nothing.”

I guess a little offense must have shown on my face.

“Listen, Lily.”

And he played.  He played through the entire piece from memory.  And every few bars he’d stop and point out something I’d never noticed.  “Here, Lily, hear how this transitions from a D minor to an A minor, then a G minor?  Listen to how that E flat transitions” – and he just kept going.  Every single thing he pointed out seemed to excite him somehow.  “And here, in the cadenza, hear how the running passage moves from voice to voice – and that F suspending the chord, never letting it rest, as it builds tension -” and he just kept going.

Oh God.

So much I don’t know.  So much I don’t understand.  What am I doing?  What am I doing?  Why do I even think I can do this?

He asked me to play the cadenza, and I did, and I stopped halfway through and tears were running down my face.  It sounded so awful, so disjointed…  compared to him…

“You play well, Lily.  You really do.  But stop practicing the notes – you know the notes.  Start practicing the music.  Learn how it fits together,  Play again.”

And I did.  And again.  And again.  And each time, he kept pointing out how one note would transition to another, one voice would transition to another, and…  and I never quite got it, but I got closer.  It’s so… so much more involved and complicated than I thought.

Finally I just looked him.  “Can I even play this?  Should I even play this?”

“Of course!”, he said.  “It’s important that you do.  But use it.  Use it to learn, use it to understand, use it to be a musician instead of someone who plays the right notes.”

I thanked him for his time, he gave me his card, we left, and I was just shellshocked.  I felt like everything I thought I knew was just pulled out from under me.

And I sat down at the piano, and started over.  From the first note.

After a little while, Sabby came home from the shop, and heard me play.  She sat down and listened.  “Lily?”, she finally said.  “It sounds different.”

“Better?”, I said hopefully.

“Different,” she said.  It sounds like…  it sounds like you know what you’re playing now.”

And I burst into tears.

She was confused.

So was I, honestly.

I learned something today.  Something very important.

I learned the difference between being competent, and being a master.

I’m… a little competent.  He… he’s a master.

Maybe someday I can be a master.  At something.

Love you all!!! ❤

Hi! It’s me! Lily!!!

And I practiced even more today!!!  My fingers are worn out!!!  But I guess it needs to be done.  I’m starting to hear it in my sleep now.  I dreamt last night that I was up in front of hundreds of people, and forgot all the notes!!!


That was kind of a nightmare!!!

There was that E that the orchestra plays, and… nothing.

So of course I practiced a lot today.  Oh well.

Today was David’s last day of school!!!  He’s happy and looking forward to camp!!!  He wants to see his “girlfriend”.  Apparently the other “girlfriend” is really jealous but there’s nothing she can do.  I mean, she’s ten.  But she’ll get over it.  Even David just kind of shrugged.  The “easy come, easy go” was a bit much though, and Sabby scolded him for it.

As she should.  But, he’s eleven.  That, well, happens.  Dave and Sabby, however, took him into their room and had a very long talk with him.  He came out an hour later very red and wouldn’t look me in the eye.  Poor kid!  Haha!!!

Probably about that time, I guess.

Okay, I have more practicing to do tomorrow, and Friday nights are always for fun!!!  Marie wants to go to bed anyway.

Love you all!!! ❤

Hi! It’s me! LLkojt

I mean, Lily!!!

My fingers are tired!!! I can’t type!!!

I practiced for six hours again today!!!

I spent one hour on eight bars!!!


But I’m getting a lot better!!! So there’s that!!!  Tomorrow I’m going back to see the conductor again.  The way he explained it to me is, I’m the soloist so I get to kind of be in charge, but it’s like a duet where I’m the piano and he’s the other instrument, so we have to work out what we’re going to do together.  It’s kind of fun!!!  But a LOT of work!!! This weekend I’m going to rehearse with the orchestra!

That cadenza is hard!  But sounds really cool!!!

He told me he’s not going to conduct me, because it’s disrespectful to conduct a soloist.  Good to know!

Sabby’s really getting tired of the piece, she said she’s starting to hear it in her sleep!  Hahaha!!!  I said that it’s kind of a part of my schooling, and she said she knows but it’s still a bit much, and I said it’ll be over soon.  I’m also rehearsing a little with Liz, because I have her recital again later.  And David’s heading off to camp next week!

So everyone’s got something going on, I guess.

Beth’s been doing a lot of stuff with her mentor.  She’s been teaching Beth some basic experiments and experimental protocol, and Beth says she didn’t know she didn’t know so much, but she’s really eager to learn.  I’m not sure she wants to do exactly what her mentor does, but she likes science, and says it’s more of a mindset than anything else.  Kind of like music, I guess!

Anyway, I’m looking forward to going to Japan in a couple of months!!! That’ll be fun!  Ai can’t wait too!!!  David wants to meet Hiroshi!!!

Maybe Hiroshi will teach him to be polite.

I don’t want to think about what he’ll teach Hiroshi.

Oh well.

Okay I have to sleep!  More practice tomorrow!!!

Love werotjyw !! ❤

HI! It’s me! Lily!

And I’m practicing like a madwoman!!!

The conductor gave me some really good tips so now I’m practicing and putting them into place, and trying to actually understand the music rather than just playing the notes.  That’s even harder than playing the notes!  He told he he’d been studying music for like thirty years and still doesn’t know everything.   I even asked the Texan Tinkerer guy because he plays piano too, and he told me to remember that all music is about context – notes are never by themselves but are shaped by the notes around them.  That’s really good advice!  He’s pretty smart, if a little… odd sometimes.

I mean, where do you think I got those animal hats I gave Allison?  Hahah!!!  He gave them to me when he moved.  He’s pretty nice.  Just odd.

So I’m spending almost all my time practicing now.  I think today I practiced like six hours.  I think Sabby’s getting really annoyed, but I told her that at least I’m taking it seriously, she bought me the piano, and if she doesn’t like it she can go bake something.  This seemed to both piss her off and make her proud of me, and that’s the weirdest facial expression.. haha!!!  But It old her that I’ll back off a little after the concert, and she just grumbled and went off to do Sabby stuff.

But anyway, I came up for air tonight.  Beth’s also practicing her singing, and David’s taken to wearing earplugs everywhere.  Hahah!!!  She wants me to accompany her at her first recital, and I said I would IF it’s after Liz and I do her recital because I’m getting all played out and one thing at a time.  She said it won’t be for a few months and she’d pay me a little.  I said she doesn’t have to pay me because I make plenty, but maybe she can do me a favor or two.

Anyway, my fingers are tired.

Monday is Memorial Day and we”re planning a HUGE picnic!!!  It’s so huge all the fathers are pooling their grills!  Haha!!!

Love you all!!! ❤

Hi! It’s me! Lily!

Today I went down to the high school to meet with the music director!

I played through the concerto for him.  He thought I did a pretty good job, but showed me some places where I got the interpretation a little off.  But all in all, it went well.  Then he invited me to stay for his class,, and I sat in a corner and watched him rehearsing with the orchestra!  It was interesting, hearing the parts in person!

Then at the end, he wanted me to play with the orchestra just for a few measures just to see how it felt, and wow, it felt so weird.  I’ve been playing by myself for so long, it feels completely different with an orchestra plugging away in my left ear.  It’ll take some getting used to!

But at least school is over for the summer, at least at ACC, and their school year ends Thursday, so then we’ll have a LOT of time to rehearse.  I guess their orchestra, while it’s a class, is also kind of an extracurricular activity, and they’ll have a concert in June, even though their “real” classes have ended.  Gotta love music nerds, right?  Haha!!!

It’s actually nice seeing so many students my age actually dedicated to doing something.  I like it.

Oh, speaking of school being over, both Beth and I did pretty well.  I didn’t really mention our midterms and stuff because of so much other stuff going on, but we passed, and I guess that’s all that matters, right?  We’ll need to register for next year soon.  We’ve still got a lot of credits to go.  I’m kinda glad we did that, it’s working out pretty well.

After school’s out here (for people who aren’t me), I think we’re going to have a big end of school party!  With all the girls!  It’ll be fun!!!

Oh, Allison sent me a thank you card today for her present!  How sweet!  And she’s good at drawing too!!!  She drew me!  Even my floppy bits!  Haha!!!  But I hear Milo’s a bit sick.  Aww.  Hope he gets better.

Love you all!!! ❤

Hi! It’s me! Lily!

I didn’t post last night because I was out with Jack!!!  There’s a little patreon content in this post, you know the drill…

So it stormed Friday night, and Liz was a little nervous, but it wasn’t really bad storms and they blew through fast, so it wasn’t a big deal.  I just cuddled her a bit and we went to sleep.

Saturday was a pretty boring day.  Lots of practicing.  In the evening I went over to Jack’s place.  His parents were there, and we had a talk.  They told me that they were going to give us a little bit of alone time, but that Dave and Sabby were right, and that we needed to be a little more responsible.

We cuddled up against each other ate dinner, and watched a movie, but we didn’t really see too much of the movie because we were too busy kissing.  His parents came back and asked us if we had fun.  I blushed and they just nodded.

After I said hi to Grace and listened to her tell me all about her day (she had a lot to say!) I drove back home, and Sabby was waiting for me too.

I told her everything was fine and that she didn’t have anything to worry about.  She reluctantly said okay and gave me some chocolate.  Aww.

Anyway, today was pretty boring too, I practiced my little rear off, and then practiced some more.  I think they’re getting tired of hearing it, but too bad – I’m not embarrassing myself by screwing up in front of hundreds of people!!!

And then tonight…  well, it was boring, but nice.  We all just spent some time together and played some games.

Oh, in case you forgot, yes, last week was Mother’s Day, but Sabby doesn’t really want us to do anything for Mother’s Day (she says if she needs a day she’s failed the other 364 days) so I frankly forgot about it.  Aww.

Love you all!!! ❤

Hi! It’s me! Lily!

And I love Fridays!!!!!

Love them a lot!!!

Almost as much as Jack!  But I love Jack more!!!

I’m over at Liz’s tonight, and the girls are with Beth.  Who knows what they’re doing?  They can get silly.  MAybe Diana’s making her famous tacos!

It’s supposed to storm tonight.  But Liz and I are chatting and eating chocolate and everything’s fine.  She ordered a pizza and we pigged out and ate chocolate and drank some Chinese soda which was really good.  I tried introducing her to Ramune but she couldn’t figure out how to get it open.  She’s smart but not that smart!

So anyway, pretty boring day actually.  Nothing really big going on, just the usual.  Maybe this weekend I’ll make some more videos!!!  I don’t know though.  I’m pretty busy most of the time, what with practicing and all that.  But we’ll see!  Beth might teach me a few tricks!~

Okay, Liz wants to go to bed.  I’m sleepy too.

Love you all!!! ❤

Hi! It’s me! Lily!

And it’s Thursday!

… not that that really means anything.  But it’s Friday lite!  That’s what Dave likes to say!  Friday eve! Haha!!!

It was another boringly boring day.  Nothing huge going on.  Classes, eating, you know… the usual.

Jack made me blush!  Remember what I said about my right floppy bit having reservations about him?  Boy said he’d try to win her over!

Haha!!! …  Awww.  Remember what happened last time…

Okay… ummm…  otherwise, quiet.  I told Emiko and Liz about the private jet, and they were amazed!  Of course they’re taking him up on it!  What better way to fly a twelve hour flight?  Robert seemed a little proud, he gets to show off a little.  Well, he can show off all he wants, if we can fly to Japan in style!!!

David’s starting to get a little excited, he wants to see Akihabara!

… and a maid cafe.

I guess he’s growing up.

Well, two girlfriends does that to you.  Hahah!!!

Well, he has one girlfriend now.  The other one’s parents found out.  I think I mentioned that.  Little player..

Okay!  Marie wants to go out before bed…  oh.  We need to figure out what to do with Marie and Cat when we all go to Japan!  Maybe Allison would like a playmate for Milo!!!

Love you all!!! ❤