A Sweet & Soulful Playlist for Mini & Me

My 2-year-old son, like just about every toddler, is an early riser.  And while I dread the 6 AM summons to the kitchen, once we’re up and moving, one of my favorite parts of the morning is when we open up the day with music.

When the choice is his, he demands Alexa to play Wheels On the Bus but when mom’s the DJ, I go for the more tender, heartfelt and spirit-filling options. So in sharing some of my favorite songs, I hope it leaves you and your little feeling inspired, connected, and renewed.

To Be Young, Gifted & Blackby Donny Hathaway  – Donny is my favorite artist of all time, and this song explains it all. Not only does his velvet vocals glide across every lyric of this Nina Simone cover, with absolute perfection. But there is something about the way he pleads with black youth to recognize their inherent talent and limitless potential that turns this beautiful song into a rousing anthem and call to action!

To be young, gifted and black

Oh what a lovely, precious dream

To be young, gifted and black

Open your heart to what I mean

Shackles — by Mary Mary – This song is the perfect soundtrack for a mini and me praise break.  When I’m feeling icky, I turn it up, grab the little guy and we shake and shout off anything that’s been holding us down, as we sing along to the hook:

Take the shackles off my feet so I can dance

I just want to praise you

I just want to praise you

You broke the chains now I can lift my hands

And I’m gonna praise you

I’m gonna praise you

And You Don’t Stop — by The Walls Group – Let’s be real: childhood can be tough, especially the teenage years!  There are times when our children may feel like they can’t confide in us. Who better to remind your teens and tweens of than God’s ever-present and enduring grace than this young sibling group. The lyric that stays on repeat?

And no matter what I was doing

You let me see, how life should be

‘Cause You make it better by covering me

Lauryn Hill – ZionWhen Lauryn Hill penned this tribute psalm for her first son, Zion, it became an instant, and resounding classic.  For those of us raising young kings, we wholeheartedly identify with this sentiment:

And I thank you for choosing mek

To come through unto life to be

A beautiful reflection of his grace

For I know that a gift so great

Is only one god could create

And I’m reminded every time I see your face

Love Theory — by Kirk Franklin — You don’t need much explanation here.  The opening lines capture the hope that I want to punctuate each new morning.  This infectious beat will get everyone in your house moving, smiling and believing in the infinite possibilities of the day:

Brothers and sisters

I wanna welcome you back to life

Back to the one that can make your next chapter

Your best chapter

How Great — by Chance The Rapper — Chance’s version of the classic hymn, How Great Is Our God is packed with biblical references and symbolism, this track will leave you and your kid bobbing your head, opening your hearts – and placing your mind in peaceful, deep thought. The minute the opening chorus subsides, we’re offered the best reminder:

The first, is that God is better than the world’s best thing

God is better than the best thing that the world has to offer

My vision is that every bar and word of this playlist ushers in a daily sense of you can make it,
and you can do it with confident readiness,
at home and beyond.

Huge hugs Mamas.



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