Thursday, May 28, 2009

Lights. Camera. ACTION!

Think my honey and his little bluegrass buddies are headed for the big time. No kidding. (Well, just a little.) They played at a recent BBQ at a senior citizen's home in Greenville, IL. It was hard to tell if the patients enjoyed their performance or not, but the nursing staff loved it. As a result, someone contacted them about playing a couple sessions at the Bond County State Fair in Greenville, IL in August. They're like a bunch of kids. Full of excitement - especially Don's youngest brother. I mean to tell you, he is in this thing heart and soul. (Think they could write a song about that!) They're practicing at least once a week, getting ready for the big day. I knew all of you would be interested, just in case you're in the Greenville, IL area around the 26th of August. Y'all come!

Monday, May 25, 2009

A Rainy Day

It has rained almost this whole day long. I have no idea what our kids were doing today, but my honey and I spent the day alone. Gloomy? Indeed. Boring? Sometimes.

But, in the midst of the boredom, there was a bright spot or two. Hubby and I watched the movie "Faith Like Potatoes." Although we had a hard time understanding the actors (whether our hearing or their accent was at fault, who knows?), it was very inspirational. Equally as inspiring was the documentary about the main character that we watched after the movie. It lifted our faith to see the things this Angus Buchan has accomplished. Lord knows, in our present situation, the occasional boost of faith is a welcome thing.

It has also been a day of reminiscing for my honey. Maybe the rain causes him to be more contemplative. He was lying on the couch remembering what he was able to do two or three months ago that he's no longer able to do. It could have been disheartening, but, instead, we felt thanksgiving in our hearts for what he's still able to do.

So, just as the sun will shine again in a day or two (I hope!). Likewise, there's a silver lining to every cloud in our lives. Lord, give me courage to face the rain, always waiting and watching for the sun to shine tomorrow!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Encore! Encore!

If you know my hubby and me at all, you may know that our likes and dislikes are sometimes poles apart. I love music - almost all types. But, if there's one that I might like the least, it's probably bluegrass (or head-bangin' rock, which I consider to be just as hokey). Anyway, of all the varieties of music out there, can you guess which one my honey is most into? You guessed it - bluegrass.

For the last several months, Don's youngest brother has been having a "jam fest" at their house every two weeks. We take in food for snacking, and the group of "jammers" bring their instruments and take seats all around the walls in the livingroom to do their thing. All ages come to enjoy the camaraderie and fun.

The music is engrafted in me. When I was a child, every time we would visit Grandma and Grandpa's house in the country, Sis and I would be awakened on Sunday morning by the sound of a violin (actually, Grandpa called it the fiddle), guitar or dobro. We kids would have spent the night on the hide-a-bed or on the floor, and Grandpa would be saying, "Hey, wake up and sing for me!" It was a routine. I never hear fiddle music but what I think of Grandpa and the legacy of music he left for his family. Through the years, my taste changed a bit. I became more fond of Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir, Christ Church, Israel Houghton and New Breed, and Hillsong. But, deep inside my heart, when I hear that fiddle tuning up and the banjo start strumming those first few notes, something stirs, flutters and comes to life. I tell myself that I'm just "into" it because that's what Don loves, but I think it's more than that. The music is basic, simple and melodic. It speaks to me and beckons me to join the group. Pat my foot. Harmonize with the singers. Before I realize what has happened, I'm totally engrossed. An active member of the "jammers." The old hymns and toe-tappin' songs awaken a part of my soul that is dulled by lack of use. I come to life. I sing along. I laugh and become a part of this jolly band of minstrels. At the end of the song, we applaud ourselves and wait in anticipation for the next ripple of notes.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

It's the Small Things . . .

We had the four younger grandchildren Friday night and Saturday, and I made some interesting (and uplifting) observations. They've been with hubby through this whole health ordeal we've been going through, so they're very aware that he's worsening. We decided to take a drive up the River Road, intending to stop at the Grafton Ferry loading area and feed the seagulls, after lunching at the KFC/Taco Bell buffet in Alton. Hubby uses his scooter any time there's much walking involved at all, and we didn't really have room in the vehicle for both the rollator and the scooter anyway. The oldest girl (who also happens to be the biggest) made herself available as my official "loading helper." It's a task to disassemble the scooter and load it, then unload it and assemble it all again every time we stop somewhere. But she was right there. The younger grandson was the doorman and also assisted Pa in getting into the bathroom. The middle granddaughter was always looking out for Pa's welfare, getting his drink for him at the restaurant, making sure he had just the right seat at the table, clearing the path so he wouldn't trip over anything. I had noticed that the youngest granddaughter kept herself a bit apart. Maybe she didn't feel as comfortable as the others in public. But she made my heart bubble when, as we were dropping the kids off, she made double trips to Pa to give him a big hug and kiss.

It isn't always the big things that make the sun shine in your heart. Sometimes it's those little tokens of kindness. I've had two of the young women in our Sunday School class recently tell me that they believe God has placed me in their lives for a special purpose. How great is that? How encouraging! I serve my honey in many ways at this point in our lives, but I still like it when he's quick with the "please" and "thank you." Remember to smile at others. Be kind to the waitress or waiter in the place where you eat. Don't snap at the mechanic when he tells you how much the repairs are. I'm saying all this because it's a lesson I need to learn myself. I had occasion this week to snap at a couple people, and I took full advantage of it!! Who was I impressing? No one. It's the little foxes that spoil the vine, and it's the little kindnesses that make the heart sing.