There was sunshine in my soul today …

Today I had a rather amazing experience … but first a little background.

You probably know that my 95 yr old dad passed away on Dec 22 in Canada. I was able to be with him before he died, came home to celebrate Christmas and then went back for his funeral. The journey of loss and grieving is a rough road only made easier by the thought that he is with my mother in his heavenly home. However my new reality here is that I am now an “orphan”. That’s why what happened today was all the more precious to me.

This was my first public outing for Kindermusik since my dad died and it was to Twin Oaks Nursing Home so I could check in to be sure everything was ready for us for tomorrow, when we’ll be doing our first “Kindermusik with Seniors PlayDate”. A friend of mine had set up the initial contact for me there since her father-in-law recently became a resident. I was pretty sure this was going to be a tough time and would make me think of my dad, since he was in an assisted living residence for the last 4 years and that’s where I would go to visit him.

I had a little cry in the parking lot and then I went in. And who do you think was sitting in the first chair by the front door … the father-in-law of my Palmyra friend, who had initially suggested I consider doing something at the nursing home! How special!

So I said hello to him and we chatted for a bit. There was another lady in a wheelchair sitting there also. The sun was streaming in the window on both of them and as they sat there I told them about the song that my dad would sing to me when I would call and it would be sunny in his room that day. Then right there in the lobby I started to sing it (There Is Sunshine In My Soul Today … see all the words below) and it was just such a fitting celebration to be there with Seniors, honoring my dad, and making music, singing the song he had sung to me … quite the experience!!!

So tomorrow Miss Janice and I will go back again to hold our first Seniors PlayDate. Thankfully she was there with me today to walk through yet another first and also knows what it is like to be an orphan as both her parents have also passed away.

They say it’s the little things in life that make the difference. And sometimes for me it’s the “little things” that are truly the most important things.

Here is the song my dad would sing to me …
There is sunshine in my soul today,
More glorious and bright
Than glows in any earthly sky,
For Jesus is my light.

O there’s sunshine, blessed sunshine,
While the peaceful, happy moments roll;
When Jesus shows His smiling face
There is sunshine in my soul.

There is music in my soul today,
A carol to my King;
And Jesus, listening, can hear
The song I cannot sing.

There is springtime in my soul today,
For when the Lord is near
The dove of peace sings in my heart,
The flowers of grace appear.

There is gladness in my soul today,
And hope, and praise, and love,
For blessings which He gives me now,
For joys laid up above.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on There was sunshine in my soul today …

Written on Dec 24 – In Loving Memory of … My Dad

A Personal Message from … Carol Anne

As our Kindermusik semester came to a close I received a phone call saying that my 95 year old father in Canada had suffered a fall. I was able to visit him last weekend, spend time at his bedside and as I said my good byes, I sang a favorite family hymn. On December 22 he went to be with Jesus and was reunited with my mother who passed away 8 years ago.

And while I would normally use this email to thank all of you for your wonderful support of my Kindermusik program for which I am so grateful, I must also include a special tribute to my father.

My dad would say that he was not musically gifted (although he was self taught on the violin and the recorder) but he certainly upheld the value of music in our home. And while my mother was the primary piano teacher for my 3 brothers and myself, on a meager, one wage-earner income my father also provided the opportunity for private music lessons. This included voice and piano lessons for me so that I could complete the Royal Conservatory of Music Program to a Grade Eight level.

This is how I developed my love of music and I must say thank you once again for the investment my father made in my life by providing these opportunities for me and for encouraging me in my endeavors. I am living proof that the gift that lasts a lifetime is … the gift of music.

Tomorrow we will all sit around our Christmas trees and open the many gifts we have selected to show our love. But always remember that the best gift we can give is time spent with our loved ones. That’s why I so enjoy offering Kindermusik classes that bring parents and children together for a few precious moments each week where all the cares of the day can be left at our classroom door and you can just focus completely on your “little one”. Now that is a precious gift and an incredible investment!

And I’m remembering too that the best gift this world ever received was the tiny baby in the Bethlehem manger. Tonight, around the globe, people pause to celebrate His birth, born on that “Silent Night” so many years ago.

May you and your family have a beautiful, musical Christmas, filled with the hope, joy and love that Jesus came to give us.

Thanks for the opportunity to share my heart with you tonight,
Carol Anne

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Written on Dec 24 – In Loving Memory of … My Dad

Kindermusik T-Shirts are here!

We’re so excited to be offering Kindermusik T-Shirts for the first time as a registration incentive!
Enroll by Dec 16 for the upcoming Spring Semester that starts on January 23 and you’ll receive one for your child! Just send in the Registration form with your payment and the t-shirt is yours!

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Kindermusik T-Shirts are here!

A Thankful “Note”!

(originally written on Nov 11 as a facebook note)
The “Kindermusik with Carol Anne Friesen Community” is how one mother referred to my program this week and I am so overwhelmed, humbled and honored, I just had to share …

As everyone has been posting notes of Thankfulness on facebook recently, my heart is overflowing with all the blessings I have received just in this week alone through my little program.

Those of you who know me well, know that it’s not about the Kindermusik brand, but rather the platform Kindermusik gives me to care for families with “little ones” during a very vulnerable time in their lives.

That’s why I feel so blessed this week that we were able to be able to …
-support a family with an infant loss
-hold a class where during rocking time a little girl looked up at her mommy and said, “I love you mommy” for the first time
-offer our first “enrichment” class, to bring the Kindermusik home materials to life for the ABC 3 – 5 year old class, taught by another talented Kindermusik mommy/former teacher
-collect and pack over 50 boxes for Operation Christmas Child – with many thanks to those who contributed and helped

In addition …
-I had another wonderfully talented former teacher/now Kindermusik mommy offer to join my team this week – that makes 4 and counting – I’m starting to feel like the Duggar family!
-I recently became a Barefoot Books Ambassador with tomorrow (Sat) being my debut event and I already have an early childhood educator/Kindermusik mommy who has asked to join my team
-several wonderfully talented former teachers/mothers in my program have been talking to me about the ideas they have for how we could continue to meet needs of families in our community which also just happen to line up with the dreams I’ve carried in my heart for many years
-this Sunday (Nov 13) will be Kindermusik Shoebox Sunday in cooperation with Trinity United Church of Christ, who have welcomed us into their facility, and reached out to partner with us in bringing love and hope to hurting children around the world

So many amazing things are happening right now that while I sometimes sign my emails “with a song in my heart”, honestly today it feels like the whole orchestra is playing!

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on A Thankful “Note”!

Operation Christmas Child 2011

Every year around this time my granddaughters and I pack our shoeboxes for “Operation Christmas Child” and this year I’d like to invite you to join with us. It’s a great way to teach little ones about giving to others and a wonderful way to share hope and love with children in difficult situations around the world.

There are several ways you can participate:
1) pack your own shoebox (with soap, toothbrush, small toys and school supplies, etc) and bring it class the week of Nov 7
2) donate any items (listed above) and help us pack boxes after class on Nov 9 or 10 (Palmyra location)
3) give $7 to help send a box
4) come to “Kindermusik Sunday” on Nov 13 at 9AM at Trinity United Church of Christ in Palmyra where the Kindermusik children (and a caregiver) have been invited to bring the boxes, sing a song and send off the boxes with love and a prayer!

Please know that your participation is completely optional and you can join in at whatever level you are comfortable with.

Together we’ll experience the power of A Simple Gift!

Here’s a video I put together last year of my granddaughters and I and my husband packing our shoeboxes, then taking them to our church and on to the drop-off location in Hershey. That’s where the real journey begins as they are sent around the world to children in difficult situations with love and hope!

Click here for Operation Christmas Child Video

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Operation Christmas Child 2011

Fall Registration is NOW OPEN!

Here we go … getting ready for another school year! Hard to believe that it was 13 years ago this August that I became a Licensed Kindermusik Educator – what a wonderful journey it’s been!

And while I’ve brought the magic of Kindermusik to probably thousands of families by now, Kindermusik has been a special blessing to me personally. Having lived in 4 locations during this time it’s my Kindermusik program that’s seen me through a lot of moving, change and starting over.

It’s been a wonderful comfort to be able to take this world class program wherever I’ve lived and touch the lives of my favorite people on the planet … mommies, daddies, babies, toddlers and preschoolers! Which now includes my own married children, their spouses and my 5 grandchildren (we said “Welcome Little One” to the newest grandbaby just born yesterday)! Wonderful!!!

So come sing and dance with me this Fall, it’ll do us both a world of good – I know that from experience!

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Fall Registration is NOW OPEN!

Help families in Joplin, MO and get a Kindermusik class discount!

I’m sure that the recent weather outbreaks have been a topic of conversation in your house as they have been in mine. I know that lots of facebook friends spent time in their basements last evening as a severe thunderstorm went through our area.

Watching the reports out of Joplin, MO I can’t imagine how they are coping with all the devastation and loss. Kendra Earl, a college student from Palmyra who attends our church is busy gathering 2 trucks full of supplies to send to them, maybe you saw her story on WGAL. She attends college close to Joplin and is determined to do all she can to help. Let’s join her!

Click on this link to the Palmyra BIC Church website and scroll down to see the list of all the items being collected – there’s need for babies items as well. Drop off your donation today, Saturday or Sunday for the first shipment. You may drop off after that for the second shipment leaving on June 12.

And here’s a bonus for you – send me an email letting me know that you dropped off a donation and I’ll give you $5.00 off your tuition for an upcoming 5-week or 12-week Kindermusik semester!

Together we can make a difference – families helping families!

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Help families in Joplin, MO and get a Kindermusik class discount!

A Wonderful Spring Semester!

Our 12-week Spring semester started in January with lots of snow! It seemed like every week we were unsure whether we’d be able to hold our classes or not and we did have to do some canceling and make-ups! But we made it!

January also marked our first full year in our Palmyra location. We started in Jan 2010 with 17 children in 2 classes and have grown to 56 children in 6 classes and our wonderful teacher Diane has joined me there. Adding in all the other locations over 100 children are now served each week!

This week we are heading into our final week of classes in all locations before our one week Spring Break between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday.

It’s time now to get ready for our Late Spring and Summer Semesters! We’ve got 5-week (and a 4-week) sessions coming your way, with Playdates being added soon for the summer!

We hope you’ll join in the magical learning that is … Kindermusik!

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

*NEW* Kindermusik Home Kits are here!

… and that can only mean one thing – the *NEW* Kindermusik semester is about to begin!

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on *NEW* Kindermusik Home Kits are here!

The Best of … Kindermusik 2010!

As we ring in the New Year, I thought it would be a good idea to take a look back at the last 15 months since I began “Kindermusik with Carol Anne Friesen” in Palmyra.

It’s amazing what can be accomplished in one year and this slideshow is proof of that! From starting in the Fall of 2009 with Kindermusik giveaways at Fall Fling at Palmyra Brethren in Christ Church, who knew I’d be saying “Welcome Little Ones” to so many in Palmyra, Elizabethtown, and the Northern Lebanon County area too! Through all the seasons and all the locations and all the age groups … we really are better together!

Send me a quick email if you see yourself pictured (or not!) and I’ll put your name in for a special prize drawing! Be sure you watch to the very end … there are 3 songs that will play … it’s my New Year gift to you!

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Best of … Kindermusik 2010!