On The Road Again

I'm looking out on a pretty darn beautiful and mild day today like most of this year's winter here out on the wet coast. Since my last tour I've spent an unusual amount of time at home - which I LOVE. And much of it with partner Bill here, which is somewhat unique, and surprisingly enjoyable! Wait, that didn't sound right. Well, he doesn't normally spend big chunks of time home on Bowen since he's usually staying at his place in Vancouver doing gigs, but a hole in both our schedules afforded us an increased degree of cohabitation. He's actually very good at it! And it IS a skill! Of course, after 15 years together, the fact that the word "surprisingly" could be included in any description of the relationship, is in itself remarkable! But let's be honest here - we owe it to solo time. It's a feature not general built into coupledom, and frankly, it should be!

Artist's newsletter, or advice column? You decide.

(Sorry Bill - WHY oh why do I have always have to "share"??)

Though this is SO last year's news, Christmas was fantastic - enhanced immeasurably of course by having Julia home. She baked and cooked her little heart out - including Strawberry Rhubarb Pie contribution to Christmas dinner. We rode bikes and hiked and cuddled up and watched movies and generally escaped into the Christmas vortex.

She brought a book home for me to read from her Human Motivation Course called "Why We Do What We Do" that is fascinating. It's a bit dry, but I feel like every parent of young children should read it. My interest was tweaked by Julia reporting on the phone from time to time on what she was learning in the class, prefaced by words a parent never expects to hear - "I just learned about another thing you did right". WHAT?? What the hell could that have been?? All I know for sure is that it must have been a total fluke. An accidental bonus from what I often joke was my "parenting by neglect" approach. Turns out my instinctive inclination to not offer bribes or threaten punishment to get a desired outcome was a good thing! According to the research, offering rewards in the formative years undermines "intrinsic motivation" that has a life long effect on a person's ability to be self motivated. It explains SO much about me & my siblings! Son Mike's 6 year old Abigail's piano teacher wisely advised them not to bug her to practice - to trust that eventually she would find her way to being motivated to do it by the reward of learning and improving. Lo and behold, it worked. Based on watching Julia through her years of education and learning music, I don't doubt this theory for a second.

Julia GraffComment