Tag: activities for my baby in orlando

Keeping it real, a message from Holly

Hello amazing families far and wide,

It’s Ms. Holly. I woke up this morning and had a realization that it was time for me to open up with you about how things are going over here at Grow and Sing Studios. Here’s what’s on my mind, I’m going to keep it real. Here we go.

Over the last bunch of months I have had to make tough decisions. There were times when I thought maybe, perhaps, we could go back to in person in a safe way. Time and time again the answer to not return in person quite yet was very clear. The most recent was the harsh reality of one of our educators turning up positive for Covid. First of all, she is okay. I just wanted to be sure I told you that! BUT, the reality is that if I had made a different choice, I could have been responsible for passing the disease along to a Kindermusik family. They could have brought it home to a loved one who then may not have been okay. The answer was clear to me that we must wait.

There are also some really specific business things that are contributing to this choice as well that I know most people don’t quite think about. Each time we hold a class out in the community, we have to pay our teacher (who deserves to be paid well), and we have to pay rent. There are many other expenses too, but those are the big ones. In order to even “break even” we have to have a larger number of families per class than we are comfortable with in these conditions. In Kindermusik it isn’t just the kids, it’s the parents with the kids. So even in a small, barely break even class with 5 kids, we have at least 10 people plus the teacher in the room. Then there’s the conversation of how to keep everyone separate and protected. There are babies who are just starting to walk, toddlers who don’t know how to slow down, and young children who are putting things in their mouths (which is developmentally GREAT). It’s all so much and all opposite of how to keep Covid from spreading. We have considered doing some outdoor classes, but currently we are in the deep heat of Florida Summer, mixed with random rain and thunderstorms at every turn. How do we plan and schedule anything right now for outside without a strong possibility of needing to scramble to cancel? We can’t.

Okay, so the biggest thing that is on my mind outside of the fact that we miss seeing you in person, is my staff. What can I say about them? They are amazing! My hubby Will, Angelyn, Kristen, Marisol, Lisa, Jasmin, Aidan Amato and even our daughter Anna who does some of our social media. We care about them so much. This may sound really dramatic, but each day I wake up just praying I can keep them all in work with our online classes so we can easily bounce back from this when we can get back to “normal”. So far, Will and I have found a way to keep them all going and remain a strong unit. It has come at a cost because our enrollments have been lower than normal which means lower pay. Even with that reality, they have stayed loyal, strong, committed, and dedicated to keeping our little Grow and Sing ship afloat. Huge thank you to all of them. I honestly couldn’t be more blessed to have such an amazing group of people to work with.

So where are we now? Today is the day before we begin our school year program. It’s a day when I would already normally be nervous, but today I’m REALLY nervous hoping that many of you will consider taking a leap of faith with us and sign up for one of our online programs. I can say that our online experience isn’t less quality, it’s just different than what many families are used to. Is it exactly what you want? Perhaps yes, perhaps no, but it’s still Grow and Sing! You may not realize it, but each registration means the WORLD right now. Each time one comes in, I let out an exhale because it means that maybe my small business won’t become a statistic in the many businesses that have already had to shut down.

Baby Shrugging

I’ve noticed in our communications with families that there are about four different responses we’ve been getting.

  1. There’s the family that has been having the time of their lives in our Virtual Classes. They’ve been asking if we would continue virtual even after the pandemic ends and we return to the classroom.
  2. There’s the family that believes in what we are doing, and knows even though virtual may not be the optimal option for their child, they are committed to our program and their child’s learning. They know that keeping connected with us online for now is still an amazing way to learn. They look forward to our return in person, but are thrilled to connect with our educators virtually right now. This is the family that believes in what we do and wants to keep the amazingness going!
  3. There’s the family that is on the fence. They want to sign up but don’t know if their child will really be into it, or really learn much.
  4. The family that just wants to wait until things are back to normal. This could be for many reasons including financial. If you fall into this category, there isn’t any judgement from me. I completely understand.

fall 2020 optionsSo, I just want to make sure you know a few things. The first is that our enrollment is never a contract. If you sign up for one month and realize it’s just not working for you, you’ve paid either $68 (for Virtual+) or $80 (for Bilingual Birdies+), received home resources, downloadable music and tried. On the other side, you may sign up and realize it’s what will become the best thing for routine and ritual in your home. Our programming is unlimited. I like to think of it like when you go on a cruise, you get your schedule under your door each day, and can attend whatever you want. We’ve never done that before and people LOVE it! Our programming also includes all children in the family. So again, using that cruise analogy, it means if you have a baby, toddler and preschooler, everyone can go to their own activity! So while yes, it’s very different, there are some definite perks to being online. Paying $68 to give our program a try doesn’t seem like a big risk, but on our side, it’s a HUGE message to us because you are helping keep this Grow and Sing ship sailing.

If you haven’t been keeping up with what we’ve got going on, be sure to view our menu above. As you can see we have two tracks for families which include all the children in your home. We have online private lessons. We also now have some classes for the adults (Yoga and Tap Dance) because self care is crucial. Finally, we have online Birthday Parties!

Being a small local business owner has never been easy but now it’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I am not giving up, in fact, I’m more committed than ever to connect families through music. It’s just in a different way for a while. Consider us. Thank you.

xo HollyWishing you health, safety, and beautiful musical moments together,

Holly Lesnick, Director/Owner

Kindermusik Virtual+ online program | Online Bilingual Birdies | Online Birthday Parties | Online Voice Lessons | Online Piano Lessons | Online adult beginner tap classes | Online All Levels Yoga Flow

P.S. Please share this blog post with your friends far and wide.
ONE MORE THING: if you don’t have children, but want to help, you can enroll in a class, and we can gift it to a family in need. Just contact us and we’ll get that set up. xo


I had to share this “whoa” moment.

Happy December everyone!

Recently I was hired to do a presentation via video conference call for a parenting group in Arizona. This group found me on Instagram where I tend to share a lot of developmental nuggets about how music affects a child’s development. I was honored to be asked and accepted the task. Can I just say that I had the BEST TIME? Sharing my passion with a wonderful group of moms was so much fun and rewarding. I hope I left a bit of an impression that trickles down to their precious babies.

I’m not presenting to you today in my blog post, but I did want to share one “whoa” moment to consider as you enter into what tends to be a chaotic time of year. For a child in their first 2000 days, the days between birth and Kindergarten, it is the time when their brain will form the most rapidly in their entire life. I learned (and then subsequently passed it on in my presentation) that a baby’s brain forms synapses (connections) at a rate of 1 MILLION PER SECOND! The actual “whoa” though is the fact that if those synapses aren’t strengthened, they prune and shed. Like, gone forever. Untitled design (1)The ones that are strengthened, shape who your baby will become as a person. These synapses are formed for vision, hearing, language and cognitive function, and this all happens in the first year of life. Not only that but social and emotional function as well. Each of us is born with the potential to control impulses and be focused but acquiring these skills happens in the early years when these synapses are forming. It helps create a foundation that will carry through a person’s entire life.

Large bodies of research have reported that high quality Birth-8 years learning environments, with regular attendance help build a strong foundation for the forming of these synapses. (NC Early Childhood Foundation)

Okay, you probably see where I’m going with this.
MUSIC!

Music is magical.
Photo_Kindermusik_BucktownMusic-2016-girl-playing-resonator-bar-1024x683It’s is a multi-sensory activity. When children are engaged with music and movement, their hearing and visual senses are fully engaged. When multiple senses are engaged in an activity, more areas of the brain are activated. The more areas of the brain activated, the more brain connections formed. It is a fact that MUSIC is one of the only activities that activates, stimulates and uses the ENTIRE brain. I think that is fascinating, and exciting.

For the last 18 years, I have been SO PROUD to enhance the lives of families all across Central Florida with the gift of Kindermusik. Kindermusik was created with the idea that in a child’s early years, we can use the best tool EVER to strengthen those synapses so pruning and shedding is minimal.

Okay here’s my pitch. A month of Kindermusik at Grow and Sing Studios is $68. That may seem like a lot, but, considering that your baby is forming 1 million synapses a second right now, and each one of those needs love and care, it’s a pretty good deal.

I have an even BETTER deal! For the month of December, you can attend 2 per week until Christmas at 35% off, PLUS you’ll receive an invitation to our Jingle Jam Holiday Party (our entire team of teachers is singing!). To learn more, fill out the form here, and mention our “New Family December Offer”. We’ll hook you up.

If you decide to wait, we’ll hold back the guilt and encourage you to consider asking for a Kindermusik Gift Certificate so you can join us in 2020. Click here for more on that.

Oh, and if you are reading this from far and wide, and are part of a parenting group I would love to share my presentation with you. I’m for hire! Just contact me and we can chat. Also, you can find a Kindermusik class all around the globe by clicking here.

Wishing you all a wonderful holiday season, and lots of strong synapse forming days with your child!

xo Holly Holly Lesnick is a Licensed Kindermusik Educator and Studio owner at Grow and Sing Studios, a Bachelor of Music Therapy, mom of 2 and has been married to her husband Will for 21 years. Holly is the Kindermusik International Brand Ambassador for the U.S., and always happy to collaborate with brands and businesses she believes in.

Reference: First 2000 days information found mostly at NC Early Childhood Foundation.

Throwback Thursday: Evolution of a “work” room

Happy Throwback Thursday everyone! Today’s close-up reflection is sort of a “throw back in order to move forward” sort of post. As a mom of an almost 18 year old and 14 year old, business owner and wife, it’s incredible to look back and not only realize how far you’ve come, but how things evolve over time. In the case of today’s post, an evolution of a room. One single room.

We run our main operations of our business from home. In our home we have a 4th bedroom that for most would have been simply the “guest” bedroom. For us, as business owners and parents, it’s been something else. Though it did have a beat up sleeper sofa and extra mattress to go on top when a guest came, in 2003 this room was filled with countless VHS tapes and machines, labels, printers and college students working for our then video production company. The shelves were covered wall to wall in VHS masters that our clients would order copies of. To some of you, this probably doesn’t even make sense! Then, slowly but surely, the VHS items turned into CD’s and multiple computers in which to make copies with.

As time moved on, the word digital was introduced. Digital. It’s something you know is there, but you can’t see. And so, those shelves started to empty of VHS and CD’s, and began to fill with children’s books. These books were the Kindermusik library we were creating as we started growing Grow and Sing Studios, our second company. These books were also of course for our children who basked in the large amounts of choices for story time each night. As the video production items started slowly moving out, more Kindermusik items started moving in. At about this time, the recession came. Our little video production company couldn’t keep up with the demands of quickly growing video technology so we went all in on Grow and Sing Studios and added our Funbox Photo booth Service. This meant, filling spare shelves with photo booth props and a new kind of production equipment. As our children grew and making “play videos’ became a popular hobby, this room became an explosion of toys and You Tuber equipment including tripods, ring lights and backdrops.

aviary-image-1570491437533For 15 years, we couldn’t really ever welcome our family or friends to stay comfortably in our home as a guest. Keyword is comfortably. We finally did something about it. We dove into a ton of old memories and even some failed work projects, donated many items, and threw away many as well. As we enter into a new phase of the evolution of this room we have found a healthy balance between work and being present in our home life. Our little touches of “past work” are still there, still showing the evolution of the last 15 years, it’s failures and successes. Our shelves are filled with Kindermusik goodness, but now this room is ready to welcome in guests with whom we can be present, enjoy the little things and remember what it’s all about in the end which is a little bit of hard work, tons of passion, and a whole lot of quality time together.

Thanks for reading and happy evolving!

xo HollyHolly Lesnick is a Licensed Kindermusik Educator and Studio owner at Grow and Sing Studios, a Bachelor of Music Therapy, mom of 2 and has been married to her husband Will for 21 years.  Holly is the Kindermusik International Brand Ambassador for the U.S., and always happy to collaborate with brands and businesses she believes in.

Community partner: Quilty’s Quality Nannies

22489714_1656515247702008_4975605285744256088_nThank you Quilty’s Quality Nannies for the wonderful blog post about our studio!! We LOVE our Kindermusik nannies. Did you know that we welcome ALL loving caregivers? Parents of course, but also amazing nannies, grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends, you name it! SO, if you aren’t able to bring your little one, but have someone that can, we welcome you with open arms!

Oh, and if you need a nanny, check out Olivia’s Quilty’s Quality Nannies, and tell her you learned of her service through Grow and Sing Studios. YAY, we love community partnerships!

Untitled design (25)We can’t wait to get started with classes next week! Interested to see all that we are offering? Look no further. Well.. maybe ONE click, and it will lead you to all the information you need to get started with our studio. Happy new school year!

To enroll now click here.


xo Holly

Holly Lesnick is a Licensed Kindermusik Educator and Studio owner at Grow and Sing Studios, a Bachelor of Music Therapy, mom of 2 and has been married to her husband Will for 20 years.  Holly is the Kindermusik International Brand Ambassador for the U.S., and always happy to collaborate with brands and businesses she believes in.



My phone gives me wrinkles?

You know, I read recently that we have more wrinkles in our necks from looking down at our phones. Imagine that, more wrinkles because we are lacking in being present with those around us. It’s a crazy notion, but if you think about it, makes a bit of sense. I’m not going to lie, I just bought neck cream.
bells
This picture is the one I selected for this topic, because well, first, it’s festive isn’t it? Jingle bells! But looking closer, it’s also a message of connection. There is eye contact. The adult’s head is up and looking directly at the child. There’s presence.

Obviously we all love our phones and I’m no exception. I check it often, I network, I shop. But the idea that there is a physical sign letting us know that we aren’t quite tapping in to the magic around us makes me want to pause. Put the phone down. Look into my loved ones eyes, be present and PLAY.

As we head into this crazy busy time of year, I challenge anyone reading this to find some balance. I’m not at all saying put the phone away entirely. Not realistic, and not fun! But perhaps spend some quality time. Perhaps in a Kindermusik class like this family does, or maybe doing something else as a family.

I challenge you.
I challenge myself too.

Happy Holidays!

Holly Lesnick xo Hollyis a Licensed Kindermusik Educator and Studio owner at Grow and Sing Studios, a Bachelor of Music Therapy, mom of 2 and this past September celebrated 20 years of marriage with her husband Will. 

www.funboxphotos.com
www.growandsing.com

 

Grow and Sing Studios Presents: Baby Days 2018

Welcome to our BABY DAYS 2018 at Grow and Sing Studios!!
Kindermusik Foundations, for children newborn to walking, incorporates the most current research on early childhood development and provides families a special place for learning and connecting with other parents and babies through music and movement.

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Our Foundations classes offer a sensory-rich yet caring and gentle environment where babies can explore and react to new sounds, sensations, objects, and movements. Classes include instrument play, scarves, dancing, singing, rocking, massage, exercise, drumming and SO much more!

Check out our baby days schedule below.
Baby Days 2018

Have you been meaning to come try out a class, or are you just finding out about our program for the first time? We invite you to come check out one of these classes, have some fun, make some music and hopefully fall in love with the magic of Kindermusik! Reservations are required and space is limited.
407.970.2774

How do I do it?

A Monday reflection from Owner/Director and Mompreneur Holly Lesnick:

I’m often asked how I can do so much or be so busy. How do I do it? How do I manage?

I usually just respond with “I’m not sure, it just works.”

But I’ve thought about it, and the truth to me is completely simple. First, let me explain for those that don’t know exactly what “so much” entails. I own Grow and Sing Studios. 13 years ago, after 2 years teaching Kindermusik for anther studio and as a music therapist on a break when my son was 6 weeks old, I created my studio which offered a very simple TWO Kindermusik classes per week total. I began this journey because I yearned for connections with other parents and through my first passion which is music it seemed like the obvious fit. I craved to be in a happy, smiley, positive place and so, I decided to create it for myself. At the time, my husband did wedding and event video – another happy, smiley, positive place as well. During the recession, his video business was affected, but somehow Grow and Sing Studios GREW. Not only grew, but won awards. Lots of awards. How is that? Through the years, I’ve added numerous locations and various classes, a wonderful staff, birthday parties, piano lessons, voice lessons… frankly the list is VERY long and could go on because not all things I tried, stuck. But, through it all, the goal was simple though I’m not sure I saw it yet. On the surface yes, it’s to earn more money and support my family. Of course that’s mission number one. It’s also to be the best I can be in my field. When I’m “in it” I’m trying to compete, be fierce, stay on the cutting edge of social media. It sometimes seems exhausting but my focus never wavers.
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A few years ago we added our photo booth business. To some, this seemed REALLY random. To other’s their response was “here we go, Holly and Will are at it again”, but to the few who REALLY know me, it was, oh WOW this makes sense. Will missed his connections made when doing event video. He enjoys the excitement. I thrive on happy environments. What’s better to merge together than a photo booth business right? Each time I help Will with a photo booth job, one thing just screams out loud to me. Something that happens in every Kindermusik class, every birthday party, every staff meeting I lead, and every photo booth gig we do. LAUGHTER. Let me tell you, the LAUGHTER that spills out of that photo booth is contagious. It’s incredible. Seriously. If you are ever nearby a photo booth. Just go stand near it and listen. I PROMISE your day will become brighter.

On top of all of that, two and half years ago, I accepted a part time contract position with Kindermusik International as a Kindermusik University Coach. My task is to lead KU students through online business AND pedagogy courses, a 3 day face to face conference, and through a vigorous 1 month practicum to ultimately send them into their own journey of starting a Kindermusik Studio. I have students all across sthe U.S. and even some in Canada and beyond. It’s so rewarding helping others achieve their dream. While along the way there is a lot of fun, laughter and I get to work with some amazing Kindermusik professionals that are also part of the KU training team.

I feel like this is becoming a review of my resume. But ultimately, it’s just an explanation of how I do “so much”.

In the end, the most important job of all is being a mother to Anna and Aiden. What a journey parenting is. Oh the laughter. Oh the teenage angst.

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Okay, so what do I thrive on, and keep adding to my life and career? LAUGHTER. SMILES. CONNECTIONS. I finally figured it out. It’s the constant guarantee in life full of variables. Is life an experiment? Well yes, we are always trying new things, testing the waters, figuring it out. But I’m starting to realize that if you can find your constant that makes you the happiest, you WILL succeed. And so, I finally figured it out. HAPPINESS is my dream. LAUGHTER is what I long for, and what I strive for each and every day.

May your week bring you much happiness, peace, success and many giggles.

Thanks for reading.


xo Holly
Holly Lesnick is a Licensed Kindermusik Educator and Studio owner at Grow and Sing Studios, a Bachelor of Music Therapy, mom of 2 and in September will celebrate 20 years of marriage with her husband Will. 

www.funboxphotos.com
www.growandsing.com

October Demo Days, Kindermusik here we come!

October is almost here and that means OCTOBER DEMO DAYS at Grow and Sing Studios are coming!! Have you been meaning to come try out a class, or are you just finding out about our program for the first time? We invite you to come check out one of these classes, have some fun, make some music and hopefully fall in love with the magic of Kindermusik! Reservations are required and space is limited. If you do not see a class posted that works for you, we have many more. Just contact us and we can attempt to match you up with one.

 

info@growandsing.com 407.970.2774

http://www.growandsing.com

OCTOBER DEMO DAYS 2019

Your child loves music? You don’t say.

I woke up this fine Tuesday morning, after a nice Labor Day weekend with my family thinking about all the emails and messages I need to reply to. I’m so excited that many parents are investigating a musical experience for their child and themselves. It’s great. However, in reading these emails I am noticing a lot of the following.

“My son loves music.”

“My daughter loves to sing.”

“My child is always dancing.”

or on the flipside:

“I want to try to see if my newborn likes it.”

“I’m not sure my toddler will like music.”

blog pic

I am not surprised at all to hear that a child loves music and that they like to sing and dance. It’s play, and it’s a child’s work to play.

However, I am surprised to hear that parents of small children want to try music to see if their child likes it.

Who doesn’t like music?

That is the question I asked myself this morning.

Did you know a study by Nielsen Music in 2017 reported that the average American listens to music 32 hours a week? That’s on AVERAGE. That’s a LOT of hours. Music is all around us. It’s in the background in the movies and shows we watch. It’s on in the background while we are doing work. It’s playing in the car. It’s playing in the grocery store. It’s everywhere.

Why?

Honestly, as a music therapist, I could go on all day on the healing elements of music. But I’ll give you a little list today that might help explain WHY your child loves music. Why YOU love music. Why music is everywhere.

First, music can improve cognitive function. Music ignites all areas of the brain. It lights it up, helps those connections, well connect. When parents say their child loves music I always think “of course he does”, because his brain is excited and it’s connecting through music in a way no other thing on earth could ever do. Music is rhythm and almost every function of daily living requires some rhythm. Walking, talking, writing, typing, running, throwing, kicking. All of it.

Another reason we love music is that it relaxes us. It’s scientifically proven that music reduces stress. By listening to music, the nervous system calms and recovers quickly from the many stressors in life. This is why in our classes, we work on the learned skill of relaxation while listening to music. We are teaching children early on to help their body calm and recover.

Have you ever tried to memorize something, and it just wasn’t sticking? But then, when you put the information into a song, or a rhyme, voila, you remembered? That’s because music has been proven to improve memory. Could it have something to do with the fact that our hearts have beats so we have an innate NEED for music and rhythm in our bodies and brains? I think so.

Music is also a great tool for managing pain, boosting mood, reducing depression and improving sleep. Who doesn’t like that?

I’m excited to reply to these parents who are in tune with the fact their children love music. However, in the future, I would love to get messages that read something like this:

“I know that music is one of the most important aspects of life. I’m ready to learn the many ways music benefits my baby, and what I can do at home when we aren’t in class”.

To everyone out there, I assure you, your baby will love it. After 15 years of teaching Kindermusik, I haven’t met a baby yet that hasn’t liked music.

Happy singing!

xo Holly

 

Holly Lesnick is a Licensed Kindermusik Educator and Studio owner at Grow and Sing Studios, a Bachelor of Music Therapy, mom of 2 and in September will celebrate 20 years of marriage with her husband Will. 

Summer is rockin’

#kindermusik is rockin this summer. Come join the band! growandsing.com 
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SCHOOL YEAR 2020-21 CALENDAR


Our School Year includes 30 weeks of classes with some scheduled weeks off which are noted below.
Kindermusik Virtual+ School Year begins – Aug. 31 – Sept. 4
Bilingual Birdies Online begins – New Unit begins Sept. 7 (Aug. 31 class is included in enrollment)
OFF – Thanksgiving week – Nov. 23 – 27
OFF – Holiday/Winter break 
– Dec. 21 – Jan. 15

SCHOOL YEAR 2020-21 CALENDAR


Kindermusik Virtual+ School Year ends – May 3 – 7
Bilingual Birdies Online end – May 3

All classes held online via zoom in a secure classroom. Due to licensing agreements and child protection laws, we do not record classes. All classes are live and interactive. We hope to resume in person classes as soon as it is safe to do so.

Central FL:  407-970-2774

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