Saturday, September 30, 2006


I have never been able to see "horsies" and "duckies" in clouds from below them. However, as I flew back to Nashville last weekend, I rode above the clouds and saw these magnificent sights:

A small snow child bent in concentration over her marshmellow houses

A light puffy carpet of clouds connected by wispy gauze on which I could imagine God stepping out of his throne to survey his universe below

gigantic of pieces of ice floating on a sea of navy blue

I don't know that Wilbur and Orville knew what their creation would become, but I do know that they too would marvel at the sights above the clouds.

Thursday, September 28, 2006


Returning to a place after 50 years is a bittersweet experience. One notices the decline of the buildings, roads and street signs and the valiant attempt of the merchants to "spruce up Main Street" for Homecoming.

The high school from which I graduated burned sometime in the 80's, so we bore no attachment to the new school ( which, by the way, was the nicest building in town).

As I met and talked with my classmates (we have all morphed into gray-haired seniors with lined faces--all except my friend Joye), it was interesting to note that some traits do not disappear with time. Generally those who were leaders in our class still appear to be so. Those who were quiet and in the background were the same at the reunion. It was nice to see one who had the hardest time growing up (single mother of unknown ethnicity, rough home life, etc.) became the only one in the class with a terminal degree--in math no less. I would like to have know what they thought of me at age 68.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006


I attended my 50 high school reunion in Hamlin, Texas last weekend. Homecoming reunions in small Texas towns are always wonderfully the same, but unique. First of all, all the men wear hats. The policemen directing traffic in the Homecoming Parade stop and talk to those on the float. People line the parade route in lawn chairs and children hover waiting for treats.

At homecoming, there are certain requisites: the barbeque before the big game in the high school cafeteria with chocolate cake and cafeteria peaches. Then the game where everyone is dressed in school colors (green and white, Hamlin Pied Pipers) even dogs. Since when has it become a thing to bring your small lap dog to a football game? I saw at least 4. The marching band blessedly interrupted the dull game. I noticed that twirlers are out of the picture--now they twirl guns and carry flags. I miss the sequined twirler. Of course the king and queen are crowned and the Coming Home King and Queen are presented. I endured all four quarters of the game chatting with my friend Paige Baize and other classmates.

Our party after the game was rife with cokes, dips and sandwiches and catching-up. There were so many pictures of children and grandchildren, I couldn't get around to seeing them all. We had 42 in our graduating class; 12 have died. Of the remaining 30, 24 showed up. I think that is a phenomenal number. There were two others living in Hamlin that didn't show.

On Saturday we were loaded on a cotton trailer and became part of the parade. There were about 8 floats mostly about God and country, all manner of decorated bicycles and wagons. The Homecoming Royalty rode in the back of a pick-up truck on lawn chairs. As we rode, we threw green and white beads (shades of Mardi Gras) to the dancing children.

A steak dinner rounded out the weekend. What a joy to see friends and trade stories.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Ann Richards

I was sorry to hear yesterday of the death of Ann Richards--another in the long line of truly unique Texas governors.

She was a Democrat with verve and brass and grit--all highly valued qualities in Texas and in my book. I will never forget the picture of her on the cover of Texas Monthly in her perfectly-coiffed gray hair sitting on a motorcycle. She told things like they were without fear of offending anyone--no wimpy limp-wristed politician she. I will miss her.

The weather here has been absolutely gorgeous--60's in the morning and high 70's in the p. m. I do hope fall is actually here to stay.

I will be off for a few days on a journey down memory lane.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Bless me Daddy, for I have sinned

In the Beth Moore series in which I am now a discussion leader, we talked yesterday about addressing God as Abba Father which really means, I am told, "Daddy".

There were mixed reactions. Most admitted that they had used that term; but all admitted some reluctance to do it. Our vision of God and of our own earthly fathers hinders us at times from a very personal relationship with the sovereign God.

From the "Your God is too Small" movement in the 60's to the older pictures of God as a white-haired bearded old man on a glittering throne in heaven, we have all had various pictures of God in our minds.One woman who still remembered the "hell fire and brimstone" messages of her youth asked how could you address such a vengeful God as Daddy?

I think I am maturing in my vision of God--I do like to give Him some shape as I talk to Him, but he no longer has a beard and white hair--He is more amorphus now.
In fact, I like praying to a lighted candle, as I think that typifies Him more than any shape--warm, strong, shining. A LIGHT IN THE DARKNESS.

What is your vision of God today?

Tuesday, September 12, 2006


This past weekend was a surfeit (I have always wanted to use that word) of riches:
Selah on Friday night, the musical Big River at the Boiler Room Theater on Saturday and the Glory Bugles on Sunday night.

We were very pleasantly surprised at the Big River production--some excellent actors. The theater does amazing things with its tiny stage. The singers were almost as good as the ones in the ACU production when Brandon was one of "The Boys".
I love the music in this play--it was a very special night.

What can one say about the Glory Bugles? If you have ever enjoyed Smoke on the Mountain or the Sanders Family Christmas; if you enjoy satire and irony at the expense of all you have loved and obeyed in the past; if you like Garrison Kellor's stuff, then you would love the Glory Bugles. What a fun-filled evening! Knowing that half the team belonged to Bernie Arnold made the event even more special. And the Wayne Reed Center benefitted too. Loved it.

Thank you God for the talented artists you have given us to enjoy. May we always think to glorify you for all your gifts to us.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Bless the Broken Road

I attended my first Selah concert last night at Christ Presbyerian. It was as wonderful as I knew it would be. Good to see the group face to face. I have rhapsodized about them in this space before. Love their music! I did miss Nichole---the sister of Tood who has been called to a ministry in Georgia (with her husband) and who is concentrating on solo work now. I miss her smoky alto.

Selah has a new album: Bless the Broken Road; the Duets Album. It is excellent--the opener is a keeper! Melodie Crittenden ( who sings it on the album) was there last night. I didn't know she was the first to record Broken Road. Of course, Rascal Flatts made it a big hit recently. It plays well here. Other singers on the album include Nichole Nordeman, BarlowGirl, Nicole C. Mullen, Kim Hill (she was there last night and rocked!), Jill Phillips, and Cynthia Clawson.

Go buy it; you won't be sorry.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Eat it now, wear it later

I must brag just a bit--I have lost some weight. My doctor was ecstatic and I am proud.

However, I must admit to being addicted to the Starbuck's Strawberry Thing (Thanks Brandon!). I can't pass a store without stopping and getting one. I am sure there several hundred calories there. And unfortunately there will soon be a Starbucks near me on Nolensville Rd.

Got to work on that self-control----not my best trait.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Poetry, where art thou?

Sandy Collins and I are using some poetry in our class on Ecclesiastes--what else would you expect from two retired English teachers? I did a couple of Matthew Arnold, THE speech from Macbeth, and others on Sunday. I will include Frost;s Out, Out on the Sunday coming up. It is tough to hear. But applicable.

Where has poetry gone in our culture? When did it quit being something every one read? Sandy said that its decline probably began with Ezra Pound and some of T. S.
Eliot in which a dictionary and concordance are needed to understand. Some say its demise began with free verse and Walt Whitman. I think it began with the decline of the age of print and literacy. Yes, this is another thing I blame on television, cell phones, I Pods, and other electronics. People don't read newspapers, much less poetry.

Kennedy used Frost at his inauguration and Clinton use Angelou--but that is the last national recognition of a poet I remember. Can you name the poet laurate of the U. S. or of your state? I can't.

For those of you who do read poetry, who is your favorite poet? Whitman, Frost, Millay, Dickinson, L'Engle, Jane Kenyon, and May Sarton are mine.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Book Tag

Phil has book-tagged me, so here are my answers:

1. One book that changed my life: The Blessing by Gary Smalley

2. One book you have read more than once: Walking on Water by Madeleine L'Engle

3. One book you would want on a desert island: the two thick biographies of Harry
Truman and Charles Dickens I have been trying to read for years

4. One book that made you laugh: Anne Lamott's Traveling Mercies--I love that book!

5. One book that made you cry: Night by Elie Wiesel

6. One book you wish had been written: a book about my ancestors

7. One book you wish had never been written: Mein Kampf by Adolf Hitler

8. One book you are currently reading: The Bible Jesus Read by Philip Yancey

9. One book you have been wanting to read: Too many to list

10. Booktag four other people( five are too many): Clarissa Cox and Julie Danley,
Craig Fisher, Stephen Bailey

The rest of the questions added by me to the list

11. One book you would like to see made into a movie--the life story of
Diedrick Bonhoffer or any of the Jan Karon Mitford series

12. One children's book you always recommend: Goodnight Moon or Where the Wild
Things Are

13. One young adult book you always recommend: The Giver by Lois Lowry