Cause it makes me happy...


Photo by Saffu on Unsplash

Do you find yourself needing to work a little extra hard to get your hopes up again these days? I sure do. It takes work to put on your tennis shoes and run out in the hope instead of getting stuck inside your head with fears, doubts, and looping in uncertainty.

A few weeks ago I was having a pretty lousy day. Nothing really that out of the ordinary- just a pretty normal run-of-the-mill funk. A friend texted me to see how I was doing and instead of texting a fake happy face to pretend everything was fine, I told her that it had been a rough one so far and that I was trying to shake it off but it wasn’t working so far. This is what she texted back: “Have you done anything to feed your spirit today?” She caught me in my tracks. No, actually, I hadn’t. The day had started out faster than usual and I had to skip my morning routine to take care of something. So even the basics had been skipped, not to mention anything extra that filled my cup. And then she proceeded to send me a few options as potential pick-me-ups. I was so grateful. One was a song that really lifted my spirits and gave me a very personal message from my Heavenly Father, reminding me that He loves me and is aware of me.

I thought I’d pay it forward. If you’re needing a pick-me-up, I hope one of these things speaks to you and lifts your spirits. Don’t forget that your spirit needs to be fed daily, just like your body. Sometimes I forget to tune into that (or maybe feel like there’s no space for it!) and my spirit (yours too?) begins to feel depleted and starved for nourishment. Here is a song that fed my spirit recently:

(This is one of the first songs that introduced me to Hilary Weeks and still my favorite!)

Dancing in the Rain (Lyrics are at the bottom of this page in case you’d like to follow along!)


It clouded over on Monday morning
And I’d hoped to wake up to sunshine
Come Tuesday I think I felt it
A little raindrop on top of my head

On Wednesday no mistaken it
By Thursday no escaping it
the storm had rolled in

I thought about going back to bed
Or reading the book on my night stand
I considered calling the weatherman
Just to ask when it might end

I did something you would not have thought
I grabbed my polka dot umbrella
And I opened the door…

And I danced in the rain
I let my dreams know I hadn’t forgotten them
I let my heart take the lead and
I told my hopes to get themselves up again
And I danced, I looked, yes I danced in the rain

I invited my worries to step aside
I needed room to see in front of me
As the raindrops fell on my overcoat
I let em roll right off of my back

And I waited for the rainbow
Cause Heaven and me we both know
This storm’s gonna pass…

And I danced in the rain
I let my dreams know I hadn’t forgotten them
I let my heart take the lead and
I told my hopes to get themselves up again
And I danced, I looked, yes I danced…

I danced till my fears washed away
Then I thanked the rain for coming… today

So I could dance in the rain
And let my dreams know I hadn’t forgotten them

I danced in the rain
I let my dreams know I hadn’t forgotten them
I let my heart take the lead and
I told my hopes to get themselves up again
And I danced, I looked, yes I danced in the rain

I’m dancing in the rain

Tell Me a Story...

The Little Red Flute: The Story

Photo by yichen sun on Unsplash

Hello friends!  August is going quick, isn’t it?

The last few months I’ve been learning about orchestration but decided at some point that the best way to learn how is to put down the instructional material, sit myself down and try.  Orchestra music feels pretty far out of my current reality since I’ve never played in an orchestra.  Listening  Star Wars music or some good ‘ole Beethoven has me dazzled but isn’t something I know how to replicate at the moment.  (Maybe it’s because they are two of the finest orchestrators I can think of…).  Anyway, I decided that writing for something I know and can understand may be a good starting place: Junior High Band.  Not only did I play in one (french horn!) but my 1st son is currently in Junior High Band and my 2nd son will be there next year (shout out to trombones!).

This is what I came up with.  The best part of this project was that I felt way more invested in the process than finishing and sharing the product.  Writing music is just so dang fun!

This piece has changed titles a few times, from “Go and Do the Extra Mile” to “Go and Do” to “Polar Plunge” and now the one I settled on.  I learned that you can sketch out a story for music that doesn’t have words just like you can for a song with lyrics.  My story is essentially “The Little Red Hen” with a twist- the little worker flute is diligently working and her/his example causes the clarinet to join in.  Pretty soon you get to hear how the brass section feels about the idea of pitching in (spoiler: not good) and as the piece progresses, the instruments have conversations and eventually all the instruments get on board with the flute’s vision of working together- even the lazy trombone (listen for that change of heart in the last measure).  Enjoy!

The Little Red Flute

Cause it makes me happy...

Focal Point

Good morning!  It’s a great day to be alive, isn’t it?  This morning on my walk/run I came across this beauty:


Its hard to see but here were some miniature purple flowers in this weedy plant that fascinated me. They were so tiny! But they matter, and they reminded me of this truth: Heavenly Father is in the details of this flower and he is in the details of my life- and yours!  Can you see it today?

This week I revamped my goals for Melodies of Light. I kept asking myself “what’s the point?” when I would sit down to write music.  It was getting really frustrating because it felt like every writing session became a “Why am I doing this?” session which would end in me surfing the internet for ideas and not writing anything.  Very productive…

So goals.  Because of my question “What’s the point?” I decided to come up with my “focal point.”  One dictionary defines a focal point as “the thing that people concentrate on or pay most attention to.”  My focal point boils down to these 5 P’s:

1- Passion

2- Purpose

3- Process

4- Progress

5- Personal

I will likely spend some time in future posts elaborating for now, but that’s the teaser.  I then went through and did an exercise (thank you, Steven Covey) of visualizing Melodies of Light 10 years from now, 5 years, 1 year, 6 months, 3 months, and the end of this week.  It was probably the most effective I’ve ever been at getting specific about what I think I want in the future.  I dreamed and wrote and it felt so good!  My motivation is on fire today with my focal point and goals to remind me “why.”  The only problem left is finding a healthy balance with how I use my time…

Hopefully (hold me accountable!) that will mean more activity here at Melodies of Light! So I’m feeling excited about diving back in!

I want to share a few other things that I’ve loved lately:

One is this:

And thus we see that the commandments of God must be fulfilled. And if it so be that the children of men keep the commandments of God he doth nourish them, and strengthen them, and provide means whereby they can accomplish the thing which he has commanded them… (1 Nephi 17:3)

Here is the companion to that scripture:

But the Lord knoweth all things from the beginning; wherefore, he prepareth a way to accomplish all his works among the children of men; for behold, he hath all power unto the fulfilling of all his words. And thus it is. Amen.  (1 Nephi 9:6)

Isn’t that so reassuring?!  No matter what He asks of us, He prepares a way for us to do it.  What has He asked you to do?  Is it apparent yet how He has prepared a way for you to accomplish it??  Perhaps for now it will take trust and hope to keep moving forward until the way is clearer.  But rest assured that it is possible with His help!

This morning I re-watched bits of episode 1 of this amazing show (Artful)- have you seen it?  It’s all about artists who share how they view their art.  I find it so inspiring.  The first man is a painter and he talks about reaching heavenward as he paints – that longing for a connection with heaven is part of what makes the creative process so satisfying.  Take a look!  (The painter I’m referring to is Brian Kershisnik.)


And finally, this song has been a theme for me lately.  “Slow down. Be still and know that I am God.”  I have felt the nudge to slow my breathing, soak up the beauty around me and allow myself to be still more often.  It is in that stillness that I can “hear” (or feel!) God speak to me through the Holy Ghost.  Such a beautiful message, beautifully expressed (by Sissel and the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square).

Slow Down


In the midst of my confusion
In the time of desperate need
When I am thinking not too clearly
A gentle voice does intercede

Slow down, slow down, be still
Be still
and wait, on the Spirit of the Lord
Slow down and hear His voice
And know that He is God

In the time of tribulation
When I’m feeling so unsure
When things are pressing in about me
Comes a gentle voice so still, so pure

Slow down, slow down, be still, my child
Be still and wait, on the Spirit of the Lord
Slow down and hear His voice
And know that He is God
And know that He is God

That’s what is on my mind today, friends.  I hope you are enjoying a day sprinkled with  sunshine, hope, giggles and peace.



Tell Me a Story...

Peace in Christ: The Story


Thanksgiving 2019 Nathan and Rebecca Harper Style (in Eagle, Idaho)

The best way to get to know Rebecca Harper is to go to her home.  Drive up to her beautiful house and watch as she throws the door open wide and stretches out her arms like you see in this picture.  “Have I done some great favor to her?” you wonder, as she is positively giddy giving you and yours hugs and talking about the fun we’ll have together.  Somehow, us coming to her home to benefit from her hospitality seems like the best gift we could have given.  As Nathan and Rebecca play right along side your littles over the next few days, you wonder where they get there never-ending-energy.  From hot tubbing to building Kinex to dancing her heart out, Rebecca is in the center of the action and delights in making us all feel special.

In the last post, I talked about the heartache of finding out that Aunt Rebecca had died in a car crash and family members were in the hospital.  Our hearts ache for the months and years ahead for Rebecca’s sweetheart, Nathan, and son, Dallin without their sweet Rebecca.

Though we didn’t know that it would be possible when we received the sad news, we were blessed to be able to gather as a family despite the COVID 19 restrictions (outdoor graveside/funeral) last weekend.  As we we shed tears together over Rebecca’s passing and talked about the past and the future, this scripture seemed to be the only way I could explain the way I felt:

“And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”  ~Philippians 4:7

The peace we felt was beyond what made logical sense.  In the wake of such tragedy, how is it possible to feel such an overwhelming sense of love and hope and peace?  The feeling of angels surrounding us and the strengthening power of Jesus Christ were real and evident in a way I had never experienced before.

There is a scripture in the Book of Mormon that I read while I was in Idaho that described well the feeling I have had since I returned home:

“And I will also ease the burdens which are put upon your shoulders, that even you cannot feel them upon your backs, even while you are in bondage; and this will I do that ye may stand as witnesses for me hereafter, and that ye may know of a surety that I, the Lord God, do visit my people in their afflictions.” (Mosiah 24:14-15, Book of Mormon)

We as a family, too, have been visited “in our afflictions” and now I stand as a witness of the reality of Jesus Christ, His power to sustain, lift, strengthen, and comfort all of us.  It is the truth that “When there is no peace on earth, there is Peace in Christ.”

I hope you enjoy this recording as much as we enjoyed recording it (not possible 🙂 ).  It was a gift that all of the sister-in-laws on both sides of the family could gather and sing together.  We presented this musical number at the graveside service.

Peace in Christ

Tell Me a Story...

Peace: The Story

Permission received from Kate Lee

This piece was written several years ago for my son, Gabriel and the sheet music is entitled “When Fear Creeps In.”  Today I finished the recording which I dedicate to my sweet Sister-in-law, Rebecca Harper.  On Sunday, she became a guardian angel and our hearts grieve her passing.  As I wrote the title at the top, the title with fear in it didn’t feel right.  As I have worked on this recording, I have kept calling it “Peace” and so that is what the recording will now be called.

The idea to make this recording came on Sunday night when my son, Gabriel, asked me to play a song for him on the piano as he tried to fall asleep.  We had just been given the news of Rebecca’s passing and he felt scared and worried that he would have nightmares.  I pulled out the binder with music I had written over the last several years and played through several, this being one of them.   I thought of the message of peace that our Savior, Jesus Christ offers and how much we need Him.  I find comfort singing about His peace and so I share it in hopes that you find some comfort here.

(Click on the link below to hear the recording.)