One day Anni was twirling and singing one of her original compositions.
"It's my gift!" she declared.
Dizzy, she fell with spectacular gracelessness.
Laying on her back on the tile floor she began flapping her arms and legs
as if she were making a snow angel.
"Falling down is also a gift!" says she.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

aural therapy

So how about sending your suggestions for songs you think Annika would enjoy hearing and find soothing while she's on the ventilator? Songs that remind you of her? Or songs that you love yourself and would enjoy passing on to a 5-year-old who falls in love with music so very competely? Don't worry about the lyrics needing to be uplifting or inspirational (although we've nothing against inspiration around here) - the girl goes for the dramatic and the melancholy, perhaps even more than the sweet. It'll be her personalized playlist, and I can print out the song titles, and note who passed the song on to her. I love this idea. So click on the comment button and suggest away.


Anonymous Joanna said...

Hi Moreena
Oh those sedation drugs just don't work on our feisty liver girls do they? V tough for you to see her fighting them and being uncomfortable and knowing that she is pretty aware. But it will be forgotten next week, if she's anything like Jessica (versed is particularly good for that). I wanted to send you a soothing Norah Jones CD, "Come Away With Me" that I think would be right down Annike's street and some of Jessica's favorite story CDs for when she's awake again properly (we do music and stories all the time). Just let me know what address to send to, I have emailed a couple of people to ask but haven't heard back yet and am prob being stupid but just can't find address (don't know your last name etc.). Take care and get someone to bring you a puzzle book or something so that you stop watching your breathing! Thinking of you much of the time,

12/17/2005 5:07 PM  
Blogger Amanda M said...

Hi Moreena,

Ooh Child by Beth Orton.
And the lyrics "Things are going to get much easier...walk in the light of a beautiful sun" might just hit the spot.

But that's not what I sent to Annika last night! That CD will have to be a surprise ;) I sent it 2nd day from amazon, so it should arrive early in the week, I hope.

To listen to a snippet of the song, go to:

Please note that the album is really uneven - the first and third songs are gorgeous and the rest is kind of odd mix.

Thinking of you and Anni frequently....but then you can see how often I check your blog!;)


12/17/2005 5:30 PM  
Anonymous Emma said...

I was going to suggest Norah Jones too. Hmmm... perhaps Delta Goodrem's song Born to Try? or Enigma - Return to Innocence? Sending lots of hugs and continuing to storm Heaven with Prayers for your family and those caring for Anni.

12/17/2005 5:37 PM  
Blogger Amanda M said...

Also, one of the most soothing CDs I know is Macire by Boubacar Traore, a healer out of Mali. (Hope the link works). One of the Amazon reviews says, "Note to parents: My 2 year old has actually come to me and sighed, 'Mommy, I need Boubacar please.' "

Maybe Anni would like it? It's in French and some African language and so the sound just flows over you, rather than the msg of the words directing your emotions or your thinking..

And hey, is being sedated is somewhat like being in a coma? A friend's sister who was in a coma, after she came out, did remember her nurses from their voices and their touch - she remembered who combed her hair, shaved her legs, etc. I wonder if it's like that for Anni - if she can tell what's going on, a little?

Sending lots of get well wishes her way!

12/17/2005 5:39 PM  
Anonymous Kristen (havalah's mom) said...

Hi Moreena
I don't have anything suitably melancholy to suggest, and I am sure you've heard of her, but the new favorite at our house is Laurie Berkner. It's upbeat and fun to sing along to, so not really what you're looking for right now, plus I am sure you've seen her on Noggin, but I wanted to mention it just in case...
Also I am curious what size shoes Annika wears, because I found some pretty slippers (more like ballet than the kind you wear with your robe) that are metallic and bejeweled and I thought might be just the thing to make a person feel fancy with their pjs/hospital wear.
I am also coming up with all sorts of new ideas for making hospital rooms more comfortable places to live. I bought an inexpensive ($25) cordless phone/answering machine and plugged that in instead of the hospital room phone, and I bought some of those hooks that attach firmly to the wall but come off without leaving marks ... and now I am using that to hold our shoe holder, which we use for odds and ends. I don't think there is much you can do to make a PICU room comfortable though, but if you come up with anything let us know for future reference. I'll keep thinking of something suitably dramatic for Annika to listen to, the only thing i can think of offhand is stuff I liked in high school like the smiths and this mortal coil, which might be too too melancholy.

12/17/2005 6:08 PM  
Blogger moxiemomma said...

first thing to pop into my mind after the wonderful and ubiquitous norah jones was heart's dog & butterfly. i love that song and it seems suitably melancholy, dramatic, and sweet for the delightful little miss annika.

12/17/2005 6:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Troubled Mind" by Catie Curtis is very soft and pretty...just her and a guitar and occasional harmony. It's sort of melancholy, but I don't think it's too tear-inducing. It's just the first thing that came to's a song that often puts me to sleep.

It's on iTunes...the 4-minute version is the best of the three available versions.

"So won't you come and stay? Let me lay down in your arms, down in your arms."

With hope and prayers from Norah, a previously-anonymous Chicago reader.

12/17/2005 7:37 PM  
Anonymous Mary Lee said...

Somewhere over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World by Israel Kamakawiwi ole'.

12/17/2005 8:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This (link below) is our very most fun and favorite kids 4 year old and 18 month old LOVE it....uhhh, and I guess I've been busted rocking out to it in the car all-by-myself, on more than one occasion. Song 1 and 8 are our VERY most favorite.

Thinking of you guys constantly, another previously anonymous Chicago reader,

oh and my older sister swears by another one of his albums, called The King, the Mice and the Cheese, which is great music, but the whole CD is a story told through music. It's also on the above site.

12/17/2005 9:16 PM  
Anonymous peripateticpolarbear said...

Blackbird--Sarah mcLaughlin on the I am Sam soundtrack.
The Moon and St. Christopher--Mary Chapin Carpenter
I Never Saw Blue Like That Before--Shawn Colvin--Runaway Bride soundtrack
Eva Cassiday--somewhere over the rainbow, fields of gold, american tune
Oh and I second the Ooh Child & the Catie Curtis

You SURE you don't want some Itunes gift cards?

12/17/2005 9:29 PM  
Blogger ocelot said...

Norah Jones sounds a great suggestion. My song pick for Annika would be "Heroes" by David Bowie. It's got that melancholy delusional hopefullness that seems like it might be her style. Lotsa Beatles tunes, the more accoustic ones from the later years (Bungalo Bill, Julia, Hey Jude, Blackbird, Piggies). I could send you an MP3 CD of stuff that might be relatively easy to transfer to a player somewhere.

12/17/2005 10:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


We have been thinking about you so much. Two of Tigerlily's favorite songs- both by Mindy Smith- "Baby Doll"- which she has renamed "The tigerlily song", and "Fighting for it All"- which she always asks me to play when we are on our way to the hospital for something. The whole Mindy Smith CD gets a lot of play time in our house.


12/17/2005 10:17 PM  
Blogger Amanda M said...

Okay, found the perfect starter song:
Say a Little Prayer - Shawn Colvin
“Say a little prayer,
say a little prayer for you…

let her get better,
let her get better,
please do…

Turn it up,
turn it up
in the middle of the night,

because it’ll do more good
than any medicine could....”

(Song #10 on
Going Driftless: An Artist's Tribute to Greg Brown)

On the same album,
#6 Ella Mae (by Pieta, Zoe and Constie Brown) is really pretty.

Also, maybe something from
Julie Miller’s Blue Pony which has
3 possibilities:
#10 Face of Appalachia
#12 Blue Pony
#13 Last Song...may your peace be an anchor in stormy times…

12/17/2005 10:37 PM  
Blogger Annika said...

My favorites when I was smaller were Joni Mitchell and Paul Simon (and I still find them both very soothing). Try "Green" from the album "Blue" (so confusing) and "Graceland" from the album of the same title - but really almost anything by either of them is lovely.

12/17/2005 11:04 PM  
Blogger Sarahlynn said...

Martha Stewart Baby: Sleepytime:

Seriously. Alison Krauss, Nickel Creek, Barenaked Ladies, this is the best lullabies CD I've ever heard.

12/17/2005 11:26 PM  
Anonymous brooke said...

hi, again --
since it seems as though annika and i have similar tastes in music.. here are some of my very favourites (in my playlist "heart songs")..

"verdi cries" -- 10,000 Maniacs
"alaskan prayer" -- glacial erratics
"the island" -- aselin debison
"father and son" -- cat stevens
"iowa (traveling III) -- dar williams
"landslide" -- mine is sung by the dixie chicks
"virginia woolf" -- indigo girls
"i am a town" -- mary chapin carpenter
"this shirt" -- mary chapin carpenter
"child of mine" -- carole king
anything by paul simon, joan baez, catie curtis, dar williams.


how do i get my songs? i download a lot of them from bear share. i know, bad me, but darn it! i have joan baez and paul simon singing 'the boxer' live!

oh, and one last quick favourite "free to be you and me" from free to be you and me.

12/17/2005 11:34 PM  
Blogger Running2Ks said...

My girls are in love with No Doubt songs--especially Hey Baby and Hellagood--they call it girly dance music.

12/18/2005 3:11 AM  
Blogger Laurie said...

You Are My matter the artist, it's a beautiful song. AND! It's Louisiana's state lucky am I? :)

The only music we're allowed to listen to in THIS house is The Wheels on the Bus and Old MacDonald. Oh, and Mark's emo music and my classical. If you want good classical, you can't go wrong with Tchaikovsky's violin concerto!

12/18/2005 6:48 AM  
Blogger mc said...

It's a little cheesy, but I'd suggest "The Rising" by Bruce Springsteen -- from his post-9/11 album. It's really hopeful and infectious.

Beyond that, for dramatic and melancholy, how about The Smiths? I can't think of anything that fits those two adjectives better.

Thanks for letting us play dj for sweet Annika!

12/18/2005 7:25 AM  
Anonymous Robyn said...

Paul Simon -"Father and Daughter" from Wild thornberry's CD and his "St. Judy's Comet"

12/18/2005 7:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I already knew I loved all of you, but then I'm reading your suggestions and saying, "Yup" and "Yup." What peas in a pod we turn out to be, all in our various geographic locations/family configurations. Catie Curtis, the Shawn Colvin Greg Brown cover: yup, yup. What treasures you all are, and you Moreena.

The Garden State soundtrack has on it some songs that our oft-melancholy Ben loves: Such Great Heights by Iron and Wine, The Only Living Boy in New York by a very young Simon and Garfunkel, and the incredibly pretty I Just Don't Think I'll Ever Get Over You by Colin Hay. Also all of Sarah Harmer's new album, but especially "Almost" and "Greeting Card Aisle," though maybe she's too guitar-y for this moment? Oh, so much music. . . Thinking of you.

xo Catherine

12/18/2005 8:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hope all will continue to look better soon. i listen to a great cd ehen i'm a little or a lot tense it is very soothing. It's called in the chamber staind its an orchestra verasion very good continued prayers tabiyha logans mom.

12/18/2005 9:55 AM  
Anonymous Anni Metz said...

I have recently become very obsessed with Nick Drake, who my dad informed me - upon arriving home and telling him i discovered a wonderful musician - that he died in the 60's. humph. Anyway, his music is wonderful and mellow and folksy. The first song of his that I heard is "one of these things first" so I suppose that's my suggestion, but overall, he's amazing.

I hope things improve soon!

12/18/2005 10:44 AM  
Anonymous Anni Metz (again) said...

oh! and also, when i get back to school, i'll be sending along a cd called "dreamland" for your girls. it's from putumayo world music and has lullabies (amazing ones, at that) from all over the world. i already put all of the songs on my computer so the cd is yours if you want it. i'll be in touch in january about where i should send it...

12/18/2005 10:49 AM  
Blogger Running2Ks said...

OH! How could I forget--our favorite children's album is Sandra Boynton's book/cd combo called "Philadelphia Chickens".

12/18/2005 11:05 AM  
Blogger Jenevieve said...

"blackbird" by the beatles.
"tequila sunrise" by the eagles.
anything by nickel creek, geggy tah, or cake.

Prayers for you!

12/18/2005 11:20 AM  
Blogger candace said...

Philadelphia Chickens absolutely rocks! And Sandra Boynton has a new one out that I will assume is just as good... Dog Train: A Wild Ride on the Rock-And-Roll Side. We love her books/cd so much, my kids are getting it for the holiday. The whole album by Israel "IZ" Kamakawiwo'ole is really nice. Makes you feel like you are in Hawaii even if it's so cold here in Chicago! I also like Baja Sessions by Chris Isaak, might be a bit too "older" for Anni, but it is nice and balmy and soothing and fun for me to listen to in the winter! Chris Isaak has a dreamy voice, I just love it. Oh, so does Harry Connick, Jr. That's my two cents. We sent a book with a narrative CD to Anni, you could open that to have her listen to, as well. It's all about a girl, named Annika, and the holiday. It's sweet. Just like Anni.

12/18/2005 11:45 AM  
Blogger liz said...

I've gotta ditto almost all of these (esp. Martha Stewart's Baby Sleepytime)

Also, anything by Ella Fitzgerald and Custer LaRue Sings the Daemon Lover which is an album of traditional ballads from Scotland, Ireland, Wales and the Appalachians.

12/18/2005 12:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anything by Sam Cooke.

Frank (Marisa's Dad)

12/18/2005 12:43 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

My kids adore the soundtrack from "O Brother Where Art Thou," and ask to listen to it all the time. You can decide for yourself if you think it's appropriate for your daughter.

When Anya was in the NICU, we used to play Enya's The Celts and Sinead O'Connor's Universal Mother to her in her isolette when we couldn't hold her. We could actually watch her heart rate and breathing calm when the music was playing.

Tiernan was older when he did his runs through the PICU, and he prefered the mind-numbing tinkling sounds of the Baby Einstein videos.

You all are in our hearts and prayers.

12/18/2005 1:46 PM  
Anonymous Sheryl, Justice's mom said...

One of Justice's current favorites is Harry Connick Jrs kids album. It's his version of kid favorites... Keeps us smiling, especially when Justice sings along. I can see Anni doing the same when she's feeling better!

12/18/2005 2:25 PM  
Blogger Amanda M said...

What a treasure all the commenters are indeed! I promised myself I wouldn't comment again, but in the interests of not getting duplicate cds sent: Anni Metz, the CD that I sent on Friday night was the Dreamland CD by Putamayo ;)

also woke up this morning thinking of Bruce Cockburn's
"One Day I Walk"
(link =

from his Circles in the Stream childhood music, being one of those 70 dad the professor filling the house with music.

Off to check out the rest of the recommendations, what a gift...

12/18/2005 2:48 PM  
Blogger Phantom Scribbler said...

Someone already said Iron & Wine -- I have to vigorously second it. Also Hem, and Devendra Banhart.

Aw, I'll just burn a cd...

12/18/2005 6:21 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

12/18/2005 6:58 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

Hi Moreena, I have given this much thought. I have a song that is very well known by and artisit that isn't well known, but I am sure you have heard this version somewhere. "Somewhere Over The Rainbow" by Israel Kamakawiwo'ole. I posted the link below so that you can hear a sample. It is a very soothing song, the way he sings it, and is mixed with the song "What a Wonderful World" I'm sure Annika will love it, as well as you and her nurses. I used to sing this to Anna in the hospital, and still do as a matter of fact. Probably not as much as I should, it reminds me of her being sick in the hospital so it makes me cry when I hear it. Take a listen. You would be able to purches this song from I tunes I'm sure. You might not want all the other songs on the cd. If I had a cd burner on my pc I would burn a copy, but I don't.

look for the link to the sample of the song under featured clips. Hope you like it!

12/18/2005 7:00 PM  
Blogger Scrivener said...

I'll burn a CD and send it along too. But I'll definitely be putting "California Stars" by Billy Bragg and Wilco.

12/18/2005 7:01 PM  
Anonymous Kristy mom to ashlee from CLASS said...

Hello Moreena! I have been reading for a long time, and am sorry I havent posted sooner! You guys are always in my prayers!!

Some songs we like are...
I hope you dance by Lee Ann Womack
Miracle by Celine Dion
Sleep Tight by Celine Dion
Breathing by Lifehouse

Those are a few! I cant wait to see the entire list you end up getting for Annika! My prayers are with you guys always. I know how it is to be away from your other baby...its so hard, I will pray for your strength this holiday season!


12/18/2005 8:26 PM  
Anonymous Rowan said...

Man in the Moon- Harry Connick Jr.
It’s a Wonderful World – Louis Armstrong
Annie’s Song – John Denver
I Can See Clearly Now –
Lay Down – Melanie
Gracias a la Vida – Joan Baez
You are my Sunshine
No Woman Cry – Bob Marley
Don’t Give Up – Kate Bush with Peter Gabriel
Gypsy Rover – The Clancy Brothers
The Garden Song – Pete Seeger
Every Little Thing She Does is Magic – The Police
The Weight – The Band
Running up that Hill – Kate Bush
All I have to do is Dream – Ben Harper with Bob Dylan & George Harrison
Eyes of the World – The Grateful Dead
Obvious Child – Paul Simon
I’ll Fly Away – Alison Krauss & Gillian Welch
She’s Got a Way – Billy Joel
You can Make Me Free – Billy Joel
You’re My Home – Billy Joel
Up Where we Belong – Buffy Sainte–Marie
The Wind – Cat Stevens
Don’t be Shy – Cat Stevens
How can I tell you – Cat Stevens
Blackbird – Crosby Stills Nash and Young
Feel Your Love – Crosby Stills Nash and Young
Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain – Edie Brickell, Paul Simon & Willie Nelson [live]
Sweet Baby James – James Taylor
You’ve Got a Friend – James Taylor
How Sweet it is (to be loved by you) – James Taylor
Imagine – John Lennon or Joan Baez (very good version)
Less Than the Song – Joan Baez
Ladies of the canyon – Joni Mitchell
Dedicated to the One I Love – Mamas and the Papas
Dream a Little Dream of Me – Mamas and the Papas
Sitting Here in Limbo – Jerry Garcia & David Grisman
Down to the River to Pray – Alison Krauss
Keep on the Sunny Side – The Whites
I am Weary, Lets me Rest – The Cox Family
Here Comes the Sun – Peter Tosh
Golden Lady – Stevie Wonder
Wildflowers – Tom Petty
Big Rock Candy Mountain – Pete Seeger
Teddy Bears Picnic – Jerry Garcia & David Grisman

I have all of these on my computer, and would gladly burn them & send them off to you. Just say the word.

12/18/2005 11:54 PM  
Blogger Shelli said...

I don't think any one said Josh Groban. His first album, Josh Groban is the best, I think. He has a beautiful and soothing voice. Here is a link to it on Amazon...

I also have it and could burn it for you if you want.

12/19/2005 12:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Moreena-

Caroline and I spent yesterday afternoon compiling two CDs of music for you. I will be dropping them in the mail today. One is a lullaby CD that includes the song "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" by IZ (as someone else suggested). This was my son's favorite song when he was a baby and I added it along with other lullaby music. The second CD is one that includes music for you all to relax by (Tracy Chapman, Alison Krauss, Maura O' Connell, Shawn Colvin, Nanci Griffith, Josh Groban, Sarah McLachlan, etc.) It's hard to compile a CD for someone you have never met, but we sure hope you enjoy it! As always, our prayers are with you...

Shelley (Mom to Caroline, tx 3/01)

12/19/2005 6:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Africa" by Toto

12/19/2005 9:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I've ordered the CD by the group Skara Brae to be sent to Annika thru Kohl's House. It's all sung in Gaelic but the melodies are beautiful, melancholy, sweet and wistful all at the same time. A translation of the Gaelic is included with the CD, but the melodies along with just the sound of the words sets an extemely soothing mood. I hope she'll like it.

(brother-in-law) Grant

12/20/2005 9:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just thought of another soft and pretty song...

"Closer" by Josh Radin. A voice and a guitar. Awesome. (available on iTunes) "Winter" by the same artist is also really pretty.

"Won't you be the new one bound to shine?"

Still here, still reading, and still hoping for better and better news with each day...


12/20/2005 1:42 PM  
Blogger susan said...

Late to the suggestions here, but how about some Richard Stoltzman (the clarinetist)? His album Dreams has some lovely tracks.

12/21/2005 9:19 PM  
Blogger Scrivener said...

Here's the playlist of the CD I sent you--hope it doesn't overlap with what everyone else sent.

Summertime --Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong
Waitin' For A Superman - Iron And Wine
God Bless The Child - Billie Holiday
When The Stars Go Blue (Featuring Bono) - The Corrs
California Stars - Billy Bragg & Wilco
You Are The Everything - R.E.M.
Make You Feel My Love -Bob Dylan
Outro With Bees - Neko Case
Where I'm From - Shelby Lynne
Kid Fears - Indigo Girls
My Favorite Color - Ashley Chambliss Hallelujah (Cohen) - k.d. lang
Calling My Children Home - Emmylou Harris
The Lonely 1 - Wilco
When the Roses Bloom Again - Billy Bragg & Wilco
She Came And She Touched Me - Townes Van Zandt
I Will Not Take These Things For Granted - Toad The Wet Sprocket
Woman at the Well - Sufjan Stevens
First Cut Is The Deepest (Country Version) - Sheryl Crow

12/22/2005 8:14 PM  
Blogger Kathryn said...

kathryn's daughter, having picked up on this purely by accident, is now in the process of CD making

at the latest, (if I pester mummy into finding me an address/loook at some time other than 2am) it should arrive by feburary

I really hope its okay for me to know about all of this


12/28/2005 6:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a potful of music on my main personal web site that you may use for this 5-yr old girl. The web site itself can be located at . I am giving you permission to copy my MIDI files (my own compositions) from my direct link to them, which is . Please note that these are in MIDI format. If you don't have a CD burner, perhaps you can record some of my better ones onto a tape. You can also take note of my name and main URL (, so that if and when she pulls out of this and gets old enough to understand and appreciate things, she can check out the web site for herself. I also want to give you my personal email here, which is

May God be with you and her!

From John Nozum
Author of Nozum Jam

1/13/2006 12:35 AM  

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