Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Artist, the Musician, the Writer

one artist,
one musician,
one writer

The artist paints murals on bedroom walls.
The musician raises heavenly praises.
The writer thinks on paper.
They meet for coffee, a lot of girl talk and...well...maybe just a TEEnie, weenie bit of gossip.

They agree to walk the local trail for exercise.
The trail winds up being the sidewalk between stores at an outlet mall 50 miles north.
Great deals! 

Long ago, the child artist, musician and writer, huddle together in a quiet house.
Lights and TV off.
Thunder rolls.
"That's the devil bowling," says the artist.
The musician and writer believe her.

Friday, April 9, 2010

New Eyes

One thing about being home over spring notice.

You notice things you want to do something about (clearing flower beds).

You notice things you don't want to do anything about (cleaning closets).

I stood alone in my quiet kitchen considering where to go for breakfast because I was in my,
"I'm so-o-o hungry but too lazy to cook" mode.

I reached into the over stuffed refrigerator to get cream for the coffee just brewed to curb my appetite.

I poured and stirred, watched the coffee change from dark brown to caramel in a hypnotic swirl.
How undisciplined I'd become about cooking.
There was a time when I cooked dinner almost every night.
Now days I rearrange the fridge weekly.
New veggies in.
Old veggies to the trash.
Mind you the old veggies were purchased last week and untouched.

Wasting that kind of money in this economy makes no sense!
I've got to do better.

I opened the fridge again (this time with new eyes) and saw everything I needed to fix a fabulous breakfast: bacon, eggs, yogurt, milk, orange juice, butter, cheese...

The smell of fried bacon made its way upstairs and I heard feet bounding down.
My daughter glided into the kitchen, snapped a piece of bacon in her mouth.

"What are you fixing?" she asked.

"Pancakes, from scratch," I answered.
Her eyes lit up.
"Want a fluffy veggie omelet to go with it?" she offered.
How could I resist?

She pulled a whisk and bowl from the cupboard and whipped egg whites into stiff peaks.
Setting them aside, she washed, sliced and chopped: green onions, kale, tomatoes and red peppers.
Stir, add, fold in, hot pan, olive oil, pour, flip, plate - done.

I mixed the batter for Cherry Yogurt Pancakes and poured several cakes onto a hot griddle.
Their aroma wafted upstairs, more feet bounded down - my son.

Three of us

Beautiful breakfast
Great conversation
Didn't cost a cent

Maybe I'll look in the pantry tomorrow!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

West Virginia Miners

Please find a way to help the families of miners killed in the West Virginia mine explosion.
They are a God fearing, strong people.
One family actually lost three members.
Keep them in your prayers.

We are former Mountaineers.
My father, grandfather, and a host of uncles are former miners.
My mother and aunt have shared stories of the fear that spread throughout the community when sirens blared and ambulances raced up the hollow towards the mines.

Close up of the beautiful West Virginia Mountain I climbed as a child.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter Sunday

Wake to sunshine,
Watch Joel Osteen - God finishes what he starts.

Go down stairs,
Gather ingredients on kitchen table,
Turn on Sunday Morning.

Mix butter, sugar, eggs, flour, vanilla, bake - Cake.

Daughter tip toes into kitchen, hug, talk, laugh,
Mix sweet potatoes, butter, sugar, eggs, milk, nutmeg, cinnamon, pour into crusts, bake - Pie.

Fry Amish bacon (yes Sybil, Amish), brew Guatemalan coffee,
Another daughter joins in, talk, laugh,
Eat corner of cherry turnover - Joy.

Shower, makeup, dress, hair, change purses, chat with son,
Pull out of drive way, watch bird pull worm from lawn - Breakfast.

Church, preaching, singing, "I Am", the Lord's Supper,
Kiss and hug friends, take pictures, leave.

Back home, house smells great
Change clothes, update blog, birds sing,
Look out window, notice bright green budding of willow tree,
Wrap food, load in cars, leave for Tee's - Finally.

Mother, sisters, brothers, nieces, nephews, friends,
Bless food, eat, laugh, eat, laugh some more,
Stories of Easters past - Love.

Go home,
Sneak another piece of pie,
Relax, reflect - Grateful!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Good Friday Memories

I lean forward in the backseat of my sister's SUV to glance at my mother.
Normally her quick wit makes everybody laugh.
Today she sits in the front passenger seat...quiet.
Soft gray curls line her face.

I have a sudden urge to lean through the seats and envelope her in a hug, kiss her cheek and lean my face against those gray curls.

Anything to make her smile.

She keeps her eyes closed as we talk about the ham we'll bake for Easter dinner, the fragrant red strawberries we'll slice to decorate pound cake, how we have one more stop to make at the market for Collard greens.

Blueish gray eyes open momentarily.
She asks if we want turkey and dressing (her specialty).
I look from her to my sister and we to our brother.
We all answer yes but wonder if the task will require too much of her.

I wonder what is on her mind...
if she is thinking, like me, about our lives before,
when holiday dinners meant we'd all be there,
all eight of us.

If she is remembering how she'd cook
turkey, dressing, ham and chitterlings...
greens, cornbread, macaroni and cheese...
bake chocolate, coconut, pound and carrot cakes...
lemon custard pie, banana pudding and home made rolls,
and yes, from time to time, jello.

How we'd all make a fuss over the meal...
how Daddy always had us hold hands and form a circle
while he prayed to Bless the food and the hands that prepared it.

How after dinner we'd all sit around
d listen to our brothers tell of things they'd done as kids
she and daddy had not know of until now.

How cousins came to our house for desert after leaving their own family tables.

How children were encourage to take one more bite of food
before opening cellophane coverd Easter baskets.

And long, long ago,
how Shady Grove Baptist Church held egg hunts.
How we, as kids, ran through that yard
looking around rocks,
wild spring flowers,
and behind the church to find them.

I wonder if she thought of the many times she'd pressed and curled our hair for church.

How she'd always made sure we looked our best. I wondered...
and then realized how grateful I was to have her.

How I hope I've inspired my children the way she has inspired us.