Z and I saw 'Alice in Wonderland' today. I liked it well enough, I guess... But it seemed incomplete somehow... I don't know.
I'm able to play through the first two pages of the Vivaldi Sonata in E minor more-or-less, but I still have a lot of work to do on quality and getting it up to speed. To that end, this week, I've devoted most of my practice times to working on just one phrase at a time. There are four of five such parts that really needed some work. For each section, I start playing it pizzicato, slowly, for a dozen times or so; then I increase the metronome a few notches and play it pizz another dozen times. Then a little faster, and so on. After getting up to my target speed I slow the metronome back down and do the whole process again, using the bow this time.
For the past several months I've been dealing with some pain in the base of my left thumb, without a doubt due to squeezing the fingerboard [I really wouldn't be surprised to find indentations in the wood at each position]. So, each day I start out practicing vowing to keep my thumb relaxed; I begin my scales consciously not squeezing, letting my thumb hang relatively free. After a while, I end up absorbed in one issue or another and soon forget my thumb, which means I start squeezing again. Nevertheless, it does seem to be getting a little better. I'm able to hold onto that relaxed thumb "thought" a little longer each day. For the first time in many months, my thumb doesn't hurt at all today - even after a full two-hour practice this morning.