Archive for the 'Remembering' Category


My First Valentine’s Day With RT

Wednesday, February 14th, 2007

It was back in 1968 – my freshman winter at college in Kentucky.  RT and I had started dating in the fall.  I was crazy about the guy!   I was living on campus in a women’s dorm.  RT lived across campus in a men’s dorm.  My dorm was an old fashioned one with the restrooms and showers at the end of the hall. 

I had to work my way through school doing various jobs – cleaning the bathrooms, working in the cafeteria – whatever work I could get.  That year I worked the breakfast line in the cafeteria, and so I got up early in the  mornings to get to the cafeteria before the serving lines opened.

That Valentine morning, the alarm clock rang, and I trudged down the hallway to take care of morning necessities and get my shower.  Awhile later, I returned to my room – and there on my bed was a HUGE heart-shaped box of candy with a large red valentine card next to it.  

It was from RT, and to say I was surprised would be an understatement.  He wrote lots of sweetly romantic stuff in the card.  He’s very good at that.  I was ecstatic because I never expected such a treat.  RT had gotten a friend of mine to hide the candy and card, wait for me to go to the restroom, and then put them on my pillow.  It was a tender start to a life-long romance.  I still smile when I think of it.

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Family Pictures

Friday, January 5th, 2007

I visited my mother earlier this week, and I took photos of items she wanted catalogued. She said I should also take pictures of the photo displays of the seven of us siblings because, she told me, “After I’m gone, no one else will have photos of all seven of you grouped together on one wall.” I took the photos:

This is a display on the family room wall of the seven siblings as babies. From left to right: top row is Janice and Joan (Daddy’s Roses),middle row is Terry (Alone on a Limb), Debi, and me – the one standing. The bottom row is Beth (Blue Star Chronicles) and David.

This display of the seven sibs as children is in the foyer. Youngest (top left) to oldest (bottom right). The top row is David and Beth (Blue Star Chronicles). Middle row is Debi, me (in the middle in my “Thinker” pose) and Terry (Alone on a Limb). And the bottom row has Joan (Daddy’s Roses) and Janice.

This is the wall in the hall – lots of pictures of everyone including sibs, in-laws, grandkids, and great-grandkids.

I’m glad I took these photos. They bring back lots of happy memories. My mother has had the first two groups of pictures in every home I can remember.

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Happy 2007 – Make a Difference, Make a Change, Make a Friend

Sunday, December 31st, 2006

Yet another year has gone by, and a new year has begun. I remember as a child thinking that when the year 2000 arrived, I’d be 51 years old – impossibly old to my childish mind. Now 2000 has come and gone, and 51 seems wishfully young to my mind today.

Ever since our daughter was born on New Year’s Eve 32 years ago, we have never been much for celebrating New Year’s Eve because we’ve been too busy celebrating her birthday. This year is no exception. We are babysitting the grandgirls this weekend, and we remembered we had some leftover fireworks from earlier this year, and so we set those off in the backyard – much to the girls’ delight.

We watched “Mary Poppins” and now the girls are sound asleep – worn out from a full day of church, arts and crafts projects, cleaning the house, putting up Christmas decorations, playing with Jake, making homemade pizza and being together.

I refuse to make any resolutions this year. I tend to stick to them really well for awhile, and then life intrudes and the resolutions fall by the wayside.

In thinking about 2006, I thought I would write about each month of the past year – what I did, what I accomplished, what went on in my life. And, guess what? I can’t think of something specific for each month. Entire months with nothing to set them aside as “special” in my memory. I could go back through my blog and read about the things I did the past year. Since I averaged a couple posts each day of the last year, there should be plenty of material. However, is it significant if I can’t recall it without referring back to my blog?

So that’s my goal for this year. I will do something SIGNIFICANT each month this year – reach some milestone, do some kindness, make a difference, make a friend, make a change. On December 31, 2007, I want to look back on the year and know that I was worth it – that I made the world a better place and that the sacrifices people have made in order for me to have the life I live were not made in vain.

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Baptism By Water and Fire

Sunday, December 3rd, 2006

My brother, Terrell,  over at Alone on a Limb has re-told an exciting and frightening true family story – “Baptism By Water and Fire” – from my father’s childhood.  Terrell re-tells the story to commemorate today – the 20th anniversary of my father’s death.  It’s worth a trip over to read the story and see the old photos.  Thanks, Terry! 

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December 3, 1986

Sunday, December 3rd, 2006

I won’t write another lengthy post about today – the 20th anniversary of my father’s death – but instead I will point you toward’s last year’s post which was entitled “November 22nd, September 11th…and for me, December 3rd.”

If interested, you can also read the following posts about my father, a wonderful and great man:

May 21, 1919

The Twentieth Thanksgiving

Dreaming of Daddy

Monday Memory: Sitting Under Daddy’s Wing

A Poem for my Father

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The Twentieth Thanksgiving

Wednesday, November 22nd, 2006

That Thanksgiving Day twenty years ago is one I will never forget. My mother tells us that God’s grace was with our family that weekend because we did so many things right – not knowing that that Thanksgiving would forever be etched in our memories.

Twenty years ago, RT and I had just moved to Nashville, and we invited my whole family to spend the Thanksgiving weekend with us. I’m one of seven siblings – so it was no small event. There were about 25 people staying at our home for three days. My parents and all but one of my siblings, along with their own families, were here. Every bed was full, and we had people sleeping on the floors. We set up a meal schedule and a clean-up schedule.

The three days were packed. Besides all the family Thanksgiving activities, we visited the monthly Flea Market at the state fairgrounds and we attended the Grand Ole Opry. All the grandkids had a great time playing together.

Saturday morning came, my parents said their good-byes and started out of the driveway. My nephew, Andrew, stopped them. He’d just gotten a new camera and wanted to take some pictures. So Mother and Daddy pulled the car back up to the house, came back inside and posed for pictures. Everyone who had a camera took pictures. One photo is of Daddy sitting in a chair with Mother standing behind them, and with grandkids in their arms and clustered around them. When all the shutterbugs were fully satisfied, they left again amidst all the goodbyes and waves. Soon everyone else was also on their way back to their homes. That was Saturday morning.

The next Saturday, it was all over. Daddy died that Wednesday – sudden heart failure. One minute he was eating oatmeal with Mother and chatting about their Christmas plans, and the next minute he was dead. One Friday we were visiting the Flea Market and going to the Grand Ole Opry, and the next Friday we were gathering around his grave, weeping for the loss of our beloved father.

You never know which time will be the last time.

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Happy Birthday, Debi

Tuesday, November 14th, 2006

My younger sister, Debi, is celebrating her birthday today. Debi is two years younger than I am – which makes her . . . well, I won’t say.

My mother wrote about one of Debi’s early adventures here. And last year I wrote a birthday tribute to Debi here.

This photo of “Debi in a drawer” is indicative of our lives as children. Debi looks a little pitiful, but I think that’s the charm of the photo. There were seven children in our family – living on a preacher’s income. However, I don’t remember being poor at all. In fact, I remember a very rich and happy childhood. We had what we needed, and we had each other. Happy birthday, Debi!

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Grandma Carol – That IS my name!

Sunday, November 5th, 2006

Sweet Stuff and Sunshine went with us to Sunday School and church this morning.  Immediately after Sunday School, I took them to the ladies room where a friend of mine asked me, “What do the girls call you?  Grannie?  Grandma.”

Sweet Stuff looked at her with amazement and said, “We call her Grandma Carol.  THAT is her name!”

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His Eye Is On The Sparrow

Sunday, October 29th, 2006

This morning in church, our minister, Pastor Tom, sang a solo at the end of his sermon.  In his sermon he talked about how salvation isn’t just for getting a ticket to keep us out of hell.  It’s a ticket for a joyous life.  (I hope I didn’t butcher the main point too badly!) 

(Note added later:  Pastor Tom read this post and told me I had gotten the basic sermon idea, but he added: “Another point is that we are to serve because we love Christ and not use the gift offered in Him just as ticket.  In fact one without the other is useless. One cannot have a true abundance until we get a real glimspe of the intentional, circumstancial, and ultimate will of God found in and through Christ.”)

The song he sang was “His Eye Is On The Sparrow.”  Click the title if you’d like to hear the music and read the history of the song.

“Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father…So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.” Matthew 10:29-31

His Eye Is On The Sparrow

Why should I feel discouraged, why should the shadows come,
Why should my heart be lonely, and long for heaven and home,
When Jesus is my portion? My constant friend is He:
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

Refrain

I sing because I’m happy,
I sing because I’m free,
For His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.

“Let not your heart be troubled,” His tender word I hear,
And resting on His goodness, I lose my doubts and fears;
Though by the path He leadeth, but one step I may see;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

Refrain

Whenever I am tempted, whenever clouds arise,
When songs give place to sighing, when hope within me dies,
I draw the closer to Him, from care He sets me free;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

Refrain

One of the reasons that I enjoyed the solo so much is that it reminded me of my father.  My father was a minister, and he sometimes sang solos in church.  This is a song I remember him singing.  It was beautiful.  

 

 

 

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More About Dreaming of Loved Ones Who Have Died

Sunday, October 22nd, 2006

The previous post told about a dream that my older sister had the other night.  The dream was about my father who died 20 years ago.  It provoked some interesting comments. 

My mother emailed our family the following:

I have no idea what, if anything, it means.  But it is interesting to me that I have dreamed about him several times in the last couple weeks.  It is good to see someone you love in a dream.

As I have mentioned , when I was a child I longed to dream about my “papa” and in recent years longed to dream about my husband.  Neither one kept me from living as we have to continue on when those we love, as someone said, “outruns us to the Father’s House.” 

Your dream about your Daddy is interesting in that I have had several very real dreams about him recently.  Strange…it happened several nights in a row…no specific conversation or anything except that he is really here.  I wake up and it is so real I am putting my hands on his side of the bed and when he is not there…thinking he must already be out of bed… Then It takes me a few seconds to get back to the reality that he has been gone nearly twenty years.

My mother told us about something that happened not long after her father died.  Her mother and father had been particularly close.  She remembers how tender they always were with each other – how they sat on the porch swing talking each evening.  Here’s what she told me:

Mama said she had hardly slept since he died and was crying one night…PAPA came back in a dream that seemed more like a vision and told her all about heaven. He told her about a beautiful hymn they were singing when he arrived in heaven. You have to know Mama was a Christian and was not the type to talk about visions.  Mama told me Papa sang the hymn to her and she thought it had the most beautiful lyrics and music she had ever heard. She said she sang it over and thought, “I will never forget it”. She said Papa then put his hands on her shoudlers and told her, “Now go to sleep and get some rest,” and then disappeared. She said she went to sleep with the feel of his hands on her shoulders and got the best night’s sleep she had had since he died. When she awoke the next morning, she could not remember a word of the hymn…only remembering it was the most beautiful hymn she had ever heard.

Dreams.  They’re quite a mystery.

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