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Kitchen Sink

Rarty Mix. Or, Some of the Best Kid’s Songs Out There

February 28th, 2008


For Toot’s recent birthday, I gave out mix CDs of some of her favorite songs. They’re her favorites because I told her they were, but she does seem to like them on her own, too. Which is a plus.


I’m not crafty. I’ve said it before, but need to say it again, because it’s my label and I’m kind of attached to it.


So I’m trying my ding darndest to write “Toot’s Party Mix” nice and neat and craftily on these CDs, but I screwed one up and the last two words came out like “Rarty Mix,” which seemed so perfect simply for the fact that I am not perfect and I’m starting to embrace that fact.


Anyway! (Can you just imagine what it’s like to live with me? All these tangents of weirdness? It’s so much better in technicolor. I’m sure you’d agree.)


And now, I’d like to share my list of kid’s songs that will not result in lame kids who talk like Stuart. Please note that my rating system is ineffective and irrelevant, as I rated them all pretty much the same.


  • La La La La Lemon/Barenaked Ladies: It’s silly, but not in a Wiggles way, and it’s educational, but not in a Barney way. This song is exactly what you’d imagine a Barenaked Ladies song for kids to be: goofy and catchy. There’s a part at the beginning that I often think uptight moms might hate:


    Ed: “Someone left me this “L,” and I don’t know what to do with it.”

    Steve: “Why don’t you put it right in the middle of your forehead?”


    But beside that, I think teaching your kids that “L” is for “linoleum” is fresh. This is one of my favorites. 3.75 stars.

  • High Hopes/Frank Sinatra: I love the message: just keep trying, don’t stop believing or thinking about tomorrow, don’t stop, cuz it’ll soon be here. It’ll be here, better than before, yesterday’s gone, yesterday’s gone. {{Putting K-Tel’s Hits of the ’70s away now…}}


    Really, the message of perseverance is inspiring. And no, you don’t want your son or daughter ramming a billion kilowatt dam with their head, but that part’s not enunciated well, so they’ll probably just gloss right over it. 3.5 stars.

  • Grandma’s Feather Bed/John Denver: This song captures the essence of family and the excitement of going to grandma’s house. I loved my Grandma Hazel. She’d give me lemon custard ice cream and let me paw through her cosmetic jewelry drawer. And Grandma Rose sent me to the garden to pick rhubarb for pie while she knit me sock monkeys.

    John Denver’s grandma seemingly had the biggest bed in the world, because:


    It’d hold eight kids, four hound dogs

    And a piggy we stole from the shed

    We didn’t get much sleep but we had a lot of fun

    On Grandma’s feather bed


    This makes me feel smooshy inside. 3.5 stars.

  • Sing/Ivy: Toots makes me sing her this song when she has to walk to the bathroom at night. It’s a very effective monster repellant, this song. Forever more, Sing will remind me of when Toots was little. And every mom needs one of those. 3.25 stars.
  • Do-Re-Mi/My Favorite Things/The Lonely Goatherd/Sound of Music Soundtrack: It’s a triumvirate tie. These songs are fun, and by turns, soaring, operatic and epic. I’m a message girl and these songs ooze hope, coping, going after what you want and being the best you can be. 3 stars.
  • Little Liza Jane/Elizabeth Mitchell: A rhythmic melody. Easy for kids to sing along to. Much better than those creepy Kidz Bop songs.

    I don’t know, I’m just averse to hearing children sing Britney Spears’ “Toxic.”

    Instead, Little Liza Jane is folky, tamborine-clanging, hand-slapping fun. Highly recommended. 3 stars.

  • Jenny Jenkins/Lisa Loeb: I love Lisa Loeb for anything. Intelligent lyrics, emotional delivery, love, love, love. This song played for awhile on Noggin, I think it was, and Toots wished Lisa were her mother. But we’ve moved past it. 3 stars.
  • The Mighty Worm/Ralph’s World: “Everybody does what they do best, the best.” What more can I say? 3 stars.
  • Smickey/Terrible Twos: Burping and farting. And again I ask: what more can I say? 3 stars.
  • Love Train/O-Jays: An upbeat, “message” song. It makes you feel good, that’s all.

    And that’s enough isn’t it?

    So let me end here:


    People all over the world, join hands

    Start a love train, love train

    People all over the world, join hands

    Join a love train, love train


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On March 4th, 2008, Joanie said:

Love that you have John Denver in there! Try Dreamland Express sometime for the girls at bedtime. Believe it or not, it was one of my son’s faves and he always fell asleep easily after we sang it.

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