Celebrating 7 Years of Blogging!


Guess what: February 28 marked the seven-year anniversary of Color In My Piano!

At this time each year, I like to reflect upon the time that has passed since I started blogging and teaching and recognize how things have grown and changed. I hope, whether you are a longtime or a new follower of Color In My Piano, you will enjoy reading the brief history below.

If you are short on time, please feel free to skip down to the overview of the most recent year.

The First Year

On February 28, 2009, I wrote my first blog post: a welcome and brief statement of purpose. I found my inspiration largely from Natalie Wickham’s Music Matters Blog and Susan Paradis’s Piano Teacher Resources, whose resources I found tremendously helpful and inspiring for my piano teaching. At this point, I was running a successful piano studio of about 20 students out of my parents’ home, and finishing up my Bachelor’s degree in piano performance at Hope College. I graduated in May of 2009.

On July 9, 2009, I decided that I was enjoying blogging enough to go full swing: I came up with the title “Color In My Piano,” bought my own domain name and a year’s worth of web hosting, and gave the site a new look.

The name “Color In My Piano” was coined when, during my senior year at Hope College, I was required to write an essay which reflected upon my life so far and summed up my current worldview. Not surprisingly, much of paper focused on my beliefs about music and the role of the piano/teaching in my life. In my life, I strive to keep my music-making and teaching from feeling like merely a job or a requirement.  I strive to keep “color in my piano” for both my students and myself.

Over that summer, my husband and I moved to central Michigan to attend graduate school. In August of 2009, I started my Master’s degree in Piano Pedagogy and Performance at Central Michigan University.

The Second Year

I continued to work on my Master’s degree and teach between 5-10 students each week.  My responsibilities as a Graduate Assistant required me to teach college level Class Piano courses to music majors and collaborate with vocalists and instrumentalists.

The Third Year

In May of 2011, I graduated with a Master of Music in Piano Pedagogy and Performance. Over the summer, my husband and I moved to Ohio (so he could earn another Master’s degree in English), where I started my studio again from scratch. We rented a charming little house with a dining room that works perfectly as my studio and I bought a piano. I taught between 10-13 students each week and continued to grow my studio.

I blogged pretty regularly throughout this year, continuing to share ideas and printables each week.

The Fourth Year

My studio grew to 25 students. Although sometimes I still miss being in the academic environment of college, most of the time I was and am thrilled to be “living the dream” and running my own piano studio!

Color In My Piano grew a lot this year! Plus, I added a Shop to sell digital resources such as my music history lapbooking curriculum.

The Fifth Year

My studio grew to 35 students, which I consider “full”! My husband, Paul, finished his Master’s degree and was hired as the Public Relations & Communications Coordinator at a science museum for kids in Toledo, Ohio.

Gradually, I started giving workshops for local music teachers associations. I never thought I would want to pursue public speaking, but I am finding that giving workshops is an incredibly fun way to share ideas and research with others!

The Sixth Year

My husband and I bought our first house, which meant moving 20 minutes away to Perrysburg, Ohio. My new studio room needed some updating, but I love how it turned out. There is no shortage of piano students in the Perrysburg area, so my studio is full as ever.

This year, I started a new endeavor: offering online courses for piano teachers through Piano Teacher Institute with Joy Morin. Creating the curriculum was a huge investment of time and energy, but it is unbelievably fun and rewarding to be able to interact with and mentor other piano teachers in this way!

The Seventh Year

Today, I am still as dedicated as ever to Color In My Piano, although now I’m lucky to publish two or three posts each week instead of five posts per week I was able to do in the past! I am never at a shortage of ideas to write about; I just find time to be a precious commodity, as we all do.

In recent months, I experimented with creating live video conversations about piano teaching using the app Periscope. I have mixed feelings about the results, and am still deciding whether to continue the series or not. (I’d love your input!) For one thing, I am considering trying out YouTube Live instead of Periscope.

Over the past year, I have spent quite a bit of time and focus on continuing to develop and improve my online course through Piano Teacher Institute with Joy Morin. To date, over 60 teachers have gone through the six-week course! Facilitating this has been an exciting and rewarding experience. I plan to continue mentoring teachers through offering the course three times each year: in Winter, Summer, and Fall.

I am still as active as ever in the wonderful local music teachers associations in my area. After holding various board positions for local chapters in the past, I am now serving a second year as Vice President for Membership for the Ohio Music Teachers Association (affiliated with MTNA).

My husband just started a new job as Marketing Strategist for the Office of University Development at University of Michigan. Although his commute now involves driving to Ann Arbor, Michigan, he is thrilled about the exciting opportunity and new challenge. Life is good, and we have much to be thankful for!


It is so exciting to be a piano teacher in a day and age when the internet allows us to be so connected. I am so grateful for the friends I’ve gained as a result of blogging, as well as the endless inspiration I’ve gained through haunting other piano teacher blogs and facebook group forums.

Thanks for all your support, dear readers, and for making this blog such a fun place to hang out!  Here’s to many fun-filled years ahead! Thanks for reading.

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15 thoughts on “Celebrating 7 Years of Blogging!”

  1. I really like your Periscopes. I understand the platform is wonky because I have been doing them, too. Strange looky loos coming by with weird comments but I like the idea that it is informal and requires little prep work and disappears after 24 hours. Weren’t you loading the saved periscopes onto You Tube after? Any way, i value your blog and congratulate you on your seven successful years.

  2. Happy 7th Birthday, Joy!

    Thank you for sharing your ideas and I´m looking forward for things to come.
    I have also a studio in your size and I wonder how you can manage.
    There is always so much to prepare and new things to explore for regular lessons…

    One comment to Periscope:
    I always watched here on your blog and liked it a lot!
    I have to admit that I don´t like many videos because it takes people too long to come to the point…
    Yours were perfect!

  3. Congratulations, Joy! I’m so glad I was able to meet you last summer, and that you weren’t on a stage, or being introduced, it was more like, “Oh wait, You are Joy Morin!!!” I was so excited to just “happen upon you!” You have a bright future ahead of you! Blessings, dear one!!

  4. Congratulations, Joy! 7 years is quite an accomplishment. I just started my first blog about a month ago ( and it is very difficult to balance teaching and blogging. I’m incredibly impressed by all the value that you provide for the piano teaching community.

    Thank you for continually sharing all that you’ve created and learned!

  5. Congratulations Joy! You have worked hard & worked happy! Your student are blessed to have you as their teacher! I enjoy reading your blog for a few years & wish you the best !!

  6. Congratulations, Joy! It has been a wonderful journey. I loved hearing about your website and Susan Paradis’ website from a fellow teacher. It opened a whole new world for me and I loved that I could tap in when it was convenient for me and jump start my own ideas/brainstorming. Your resources especially blogging about iPad apps were a tremendous help. The iPad transformed my studio!!! About that time, an adult voice student encouraged and helped me start my own studio website which exploded my studio publicity. So many changes for you as well as for myself! Thanks for promoting better teaching!!!

  7. Sometimes being a “private” piano teacher can be a bit daunting. You have no one with whom to discuss ideas or share little problems. But here is your wonderful blog well utilized by like-minded teachers filled with great ideas and interesting discussions. Congratulations on the past 7 years and much good luck for the future. Yes I also enjoyed your Periscope presentations.

  8. Congratulations, friend!!! You’re an inspiration to all of us!!! I appreciate what you do and the integrity you provide in our industry! I hope the next 7 years are even better!

  9. Congratulations Joy! You inspired me to start my own blog (today) to share my story with my special needs student with all its joy, frustration and sense of achievement, maybe it will help and inspire other teachers.
    Keep up the great work.

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