2013 recap and plans for 2014

2013 is now history and with it comes the obligatory year in review post!

Completed 2013 NeuYear Calendar
Completed 2013 NeuYear Calendar

2013 Highlights:

Plans for 2014:

  • Schedule at least 8 organ lessons with Michael.
  • I’d like to have the Anonymous Repair Man come again as there are a few more issues to be fixed.
  • Continue to track my practice time (more on this below).
  • Determine how I can improve this blog (more on this below).
  • Aim for practice sessions of at least 45 minutes. According to The Bullet Proof Musician 45 minutes may be the ideal length for adults.

Tracking my practice sessions:

In 2013, I started tracking my practice times on a NeuYear 2′ x 3′ calendar. In the photo, you can see every day that I practiced or had an organ lesson. As the year went on I became lazy. Instead of filling in the calendar after every practice session, I’d transfer the times that I had recorded in a spiral notebook that I keep at the organ bench. I didn’t keep up with large calendar habit for two reasons:

  1. The calender is on the back side of the door in my home office. This door is usually open which means I didn’t see it often.
  2. The calender was to far away from the organ to be convenient.
Lift App Practice Musical Instrument
Practice Musical Instrument in Lift App

In 2014, I will be using a traditional calendar with a page for each month. This one is has a cute cat picture for each month (thanks, Mom!). The cat calendar will be kept on my organ bench. I will also keep recording in my spiral notebook since this habit precedes 2013.

In addition, I am also tracking my practice days with the Lift app. Lift is a free app for tracking any habit or goal on a daily basis. I like that it includes charts and gives encouraging reminders. I am currently riding a 20 day streak for Practice Musical Instrument!

Blog Improvement:

First, Thank you for your continued support and for reading this blog. Your support is encouraging and helps me to keep writing and sharing my experiences. If you know someone who may be interested, please share this site with them.

Where would you like to see this blog go in 2014? What suggestions do you have? How can I provide you with more value? I have been attempting to pull a practice lesson out of each organ lesson that can be applied to everyone’s life. Do you like these “inspirational” posts?

Would you like to see some videos with my cats at the organ bench while I practice? Even though I am not a great organist (yet), perhaps the videos will help expose the organ to more people.

Feel free to comment with your suggestions for 2014 or send an email using the contact form. Or if you are reading this post in an email you can reply to the email and I should receive it. If you did not receive this blog post in an email, but would like to receive future posts via email, please subscribe at the top right of this page.

I hope your 2014 is off to a great start!

Making it more complicated than it needs to be - December 2013 Lesson
How I survived a gas leak
Website | + posts

Heidi Bender writes about her experiences of learning to play the organ. She started on the adventure in 2009.

She also writes on her website Tons of Thanks, which helps people write thank-you notes. Heidi is also a cat lady who writes at The Joy of Cats.

4 thoughts on “2013 recap and plans for 2014”

  1. I like your blog. I always feel inspired after reading the blogs.
    Keep up the inspirational posts
    Nice to keep track of practice time. I always had to do that when I took piano
    Maybe you can contact the same repairman or he could recommend someone
    that doesn’t have to be anonymous.
    Your cats seem very interested in everything you do with the organ.
    Looks like one of them wants to be an organist.


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