We’re excited to present our newest editorial series, Mom About Town. In this series, we will highlight mothers in Flagstaff that are doing amazing things! From business owners to volunteers and community ambassadors we hope these interviews are encouraging and inspirational.
:: Meet Jody ::
Tell us a little about yourself, and your family:
I grew up in Southern Arizona, but then headed east to just outside of New York City for college to study music surrounded by a whole new world of culture. I ended up staying for 15 years, first teaching middle school band, and then elementary school music. I’ve now been in Flagstaff full time for 7 years and love being back in Arizona, but in an area with 4 seasons! My favorite thing in the world is being Momma to my 7 year old daughter and 4 year old son.
Share a little history behind your passion, and how you got started:
I loved teaching music in the public schools, but always had the dream of creating music classes for little ones and their parents. When I went back to school for my Masters, I really focused in on this. I stopped teaching when my daughter was born, and then three years ago decided that my kids were old enough for me to take the leap of creating my own business. With the gentle nudge of a few friends, Little Music Makers of Flagstaff was formed, I wrote two years worth of curriculum, and have been having the time of my life on this adventure!
What’s a bit of insight you would share with yourself if you could go back in time?
Be kind to yourself…comparisons are a waste of time! There will always be a mom who has it more together, whether they manage to stay at home and make it all work, or work away from the home full time and still hold it all together. There will always be a mom who makes it all look easy and natural. Instead of comparing yourself to these other moms, gain some tips and inspiration from them, but know that every situation is unique and the only thing that comparing does is feeds Mom Guilt!
What motivates and inspires you?
My kids are, by far, my biggest motivators. I hope that, by example, I can teach them to follow their passions and find ways to truly enjoy life. Knowing that they are watching my every move is also a pretty big motivator when it comes to showing kindness and empathy. As far as other inspiration, I have been surrounded by amazing music teachers growing up, during my time back East, and now here in Flagstaff.
What is the most rewarding part of what you do?
I literally get to watch children discover a love for music! Even at just a few months old, this discovery happens. I get to watch children go through so many different stages of these discoveries as they are sung to, danced with, and given instruments to explore! It is extremely rewarding to hear parents tell me their personal stories about how they have watched their children change from being in my classes in ways they had no idea would happen. I also know that so many parents with little ones need more community! I have watched parent friendships and connections develop within my classes, and to me, building up that parent support is one of the most important things my classes can provide.
What is the most challenging thing you encounter as a mother pursuing her passions?
Not being able to be more than one place at a time. I wish I could be volunteering in class, going on every field trip, and helping out with every class event for my kids. Allowing myself the pass in missing some of this and reminding myself that there are plenty of other ways to be involved is definitely a work in progress for me.
What advice would you share with another mother starting her own journey to follow her passion?
Just go for it! It will either work or it won’t work, and either way you should hold your head high for giving it a try. It can be a scary step to take, and you will probably face plenty of self-doubt and worry on this journey, so surrounding yourself with a few people who will act as your cheerleaders and your biggest supporters is vital! Most importantly, remember that you are doing it because it is your passion. Don’t forget to enjoy doing what you love!
What are some of your Favorites?
Coffee Spot – Tourist Home. A chai latte and cruller…enough said.
Date Night – An evening of live music followed by a glass of wine at Flg Terroir.
Family Activity – Bike rides or hikes with my kids. Exploring National Parks/Monuments together as the kids check Jr Ranger badges off their list.
Self Care – Baking and cooking for others.
Instagrams – vibranthappywomen, peopleofny, smittenkitchen, i_weigh, teaching music