|Raffi -- from google images|
When Trisa was a baby I worked at a day care center. I was a substitute and so I taught different age groups on different days. One of my least favorite rooms to work in was the toddler room. This may surprise those of you who know what a huge fan I am of toddlers. They are all SO cute, and a little funny. I often smile constantly when I get the chance to watch them. However, all day, in a not too big room, with eight toddlers, and one other teacher can seem to drag on for at least a week. Toddlers love to climb, and the little furniture the day care provided made it easy for them. So the whole day would be spent saying, "Get down from the table! Get down from the table! Get down from the table!" and then there would be a break to change a stinky diaper, or to say "Don't throw the toys!" "Don't hit!"
At the end of the day it was down to just me and four or five toddlers, and time was dragging. I was sure the day was never going to end. Then I saw an old fashioned tape recorder that wasn't quite as old fashioned back then as it is now. I hit play, and for the first time that I can remember, I heard Raffi sing. It was cheerful, and all of a sudden the room felt a lot less like a trap, and more like a pleasant place to be. The music had rescued me from the tension I was feeling after a long day, and I enjoyed those little people until we could all go home.
Another time, when Dan was two, we had the blessing of getting to go stay on a house boat at Lake Powell with a lot of my family (thanks again Jeff and Jenny). Derek was travelling with Trisa in a different car because he couldn't stay the whole time. Dan was with me and the other kids. The longer we drove the bigger my headache got, and the more grumpy Dan got. Finally, I told Tia we had to change music and I asked her to put on children's music. Dan loved, and actually still loves, Raffi singing songs about ducks. That children's music made such a huge difference! I had felt trapped in that car with my head pounding, but as Dan and I sang along to duck songs, and I entertained other drivers by dancing in the drivers seat to some other children's music, my headache faded, and the mood in the car shifted.
I am thankful for Raffi! As an interesting side note, when I still thought threatening children was a good way of parenting, I told Trisa that if she didn't stop throwing a tantrum I would turn the Raffi music off. "NOOOOOO!" Trisa did not like that idea.