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The New Domesticity: Singing Our Way Through the Day

The New Domesticity: Singing Our Way Through the Day

My dad tapped lightly on the bedroom door and then tiptoed in. Sunlight slipped through the cracks in the blinds as the minute hand on the clock pushed relentlessly toward the inevitable. The school bus would soon be on its way. Yet, my sister and I stirred not. “Girls, time to get up . . . ” Still, not a creature was stirring. It was then that our father moved to the next phase of our wakeup routine. He cleared his throat and sang out, “There’s a cold rag a-comin’ if you don’t get up!” We stirred. We couldn’t exactly giggle through our grogginess, but his warbling cowboy drawl did the trick and we finally relented, making our way to the breakfast table.

It was the same “trick” my dad’s dad had used: the trick of combining music and humor to prompt action. Now, the “cold rag” was never actually a-comin’, but there was always that humorous hint of possibility. This month we’ll use the word “music” to explore several ways in which we, too, can use songs from the silly to the serious to engage our children throughout the day.

Read the rest of this article in the full digital issue below.

Julianna Lawson and her husband, Jamie, make their home in Vancouver with their four children, ages 14 to 22.

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