“I Like Old Clothes”

This was originally published in 1976, but is being reissued this summer with new illustrations by Patrice Barton.  I don’t remember the original, but this version is certainly delightful.

The poem, by Mary Ann Hoberman, is especially appropriate at this time in my house.  The girls have been wearing a lot of hand-me-downs, recycled clothes, and DIY clothes.  Much like the kids in the book, they think it’s kind of fun to take something and make it their own (or have mom make it into something new – see my experiment here).  I don’t think the girls think much about the life an item of clothing has lived before it comes to them, but the kids in the story sure do.  They don’t want clothes that don’t have a story – they want to try and figure out how the clothes lived before they came to live with them.

It’s a great story and made me think (as a mom) about how thankful I am for friends who pass along clothes, and how I can take something and make it new to my girls.

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I received this book from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are my own.

What I am Thankful For – Day 14

Today I am thankful for music.  Music has always been a part of my life – listening and performing.

  • I thank my Grandma for my education in classic musicals and 40s Big Band music.
  • I thank my parents for buying a piano and paying for lessons for a number of years.
  • I thank them for my clarinet, clarinet lessons, and coming to my various band concerts.
  • I thank my two jazz band teachers in college – Jay Hauenstein and Joe Mailhot for two completely different approaches to jazz and music in general.
  • I thank my choir director in college who, even though we were a small choir, accepted everyone and taught us to stretch our comfort levels.  From that choir I began my love affair with Vivaldi’s Gloria.
  • I thank the two church choir directors with which I am currently involved.  I love how I can go to choir practices and I know that I am going to learn something different each night.  One director teaches chant and I learn little tidbits about the history of the music of the Church.  The other director shows us how current music (or more contemporary than 1850, in some cases) can be incorporated in our beautiful Mass.  She stretches us to look beyond the notes to the words of the songs we sing so that our parish will feel the meaning and so that we can enrich the Mass.
  • I thank Pandora for going back to unlimited listening, and Apple for inventing the iPod and iTunes.

Without music, my life would be a lot quieter, a lot less vibrant, and a lot poorer.  Music allows people to speak beyond words.  Music is that final expression of beauty that makes life worthwhile.  To everyone who has impacted my life through music, I thank you.

What I am Thankful For – Days 11, 12, & 13

Here is what I have been thankful for the last few days…..

Day 11: My husband who served in the Army for four years.  He spent a year in Korea, serving at Camp Casey.  The remaining three years were spent at Fort Lewis, Washington.  He came hope from Korea, we were married a week later (on a Friday), and then moved to Washington on Sunday.  Those three years we spend in Washington weren’t always easy, but I was proud of him for his service.

I have a lot of family members who have served in the Armed Forces, both in war and peace.  It’s not always easy being the person at home, but it’s our way to serve.  I’m reminded of a paragraph in the Patriotism lecture in Rainbow:

Hers is the first battle, and hers is the first victory. It is the sister that kisses the brother good-bye, placing her sweet benediction upon his lips. He marches away under flying colors to the sound of martial strains; but she, in the silence that follows, fights the first battle. Womanhood stands back of the ranks and holds up the Flag at home, for if it were not for Womanhood and the love that is centered in her realm, there would be nothing to incite him to deeds of bravery on the field of battle.

That paragraph didn’t have the same meaning until I was that person at home, even though he wasn’t going into battle.

Day 12: I am thankful for my family – immediate and extended.  It is family that gathers around for special occasions – birthdays, holidays, weddings, funerals – that makes life worth living.  Family gives you something to look forward to, people who love you no matter what happens, and people who rally around when things aren’t so wonderful (most of the time).  In the end, it is all that matters.

Day 13: Today I am thankful for naps!  Yesterday, we had two little girls who didn’t want to rest and take a nap.  That led to a very frustrating evening.  They got up too early this morning, so naps it was for the afternoon.  They must have been tired – they slept for over 3 hours!  Now, we have two little girls who want to snuggle and are well rested.

What I am Thankful For – Day 10

I am thankful for the opportunity to spend time quietly in adoration today.  I took an early lunch and spent an hour at church this morning sitting quietly in adoration of the Blessed Eucharist.  I don’t usually sit in adoration, and although I like doing adoration at night, it was nice to be able to take time out of my day and relax.

It allows me the opportunity to refocus.  Today, I read The Lucado Inspirational Reader while sitting in adoration.  It gave me an opportunity to reflect on my relationship with God and prayer in general.  There were lots of times I just sat and thought about particular passages.  I know that the other people at adoration tend to sit and pray the rosary, but I am not comfortable doing that, especially since I haven’t prayed the rosary in such a long time.

I am trying to learn and trying to re-evaluate certain things in my life.  This is not a fast process by any means, and I am thankful that I have the opportunity to explore my faith.

What I am Thankful For – Day 9

Today, I am thankful for the variety of Iowa weather.  This morning, it was cold and rainy (after a night of wind and rain).  Then the snow started.  That lasted all morning.  By afternoon, the sun was shining and the rain had stopped.  Of course, it wasn’t all that warm, but the snow didn’t stick around long.

It gave us a taste of what this winter could be…….and that doesn’t look good!

What I am Thankful For – Day 8

This may be trite, but today I am thankful for the right to vote.  I am grateful for those who fought for a woman’s right to vote.  I am thankful for those who died to keep our country free, and allow me the opportunity to continue to vote each year.

I voted today in my local election.  I try to educate myself as much as possible on the issues, and then I cast my votes accordingly.  I have voted in almost every election – even voting absentee when living out of state with the Army.

It is a right and a privilege to be able to influence local issues and to show my support for candidates that I can trust to make the correct decision for my community.  It is the only way politicians know what the electorate really wants.

Did you vote today?

What I am Thankful For – Day 7

Today, I am thankful for my education.  I am thankful for the entire experience – not just the actual learning.  Through my education, I met some very interesting professors, fellow students, and friends.  Some of these friendships will last a lifetime, no matter how long between contacts.

My education has allowed me to have a job that I love that is close to my home.  It has taught me how to keep learning, how to analyze information, and how to use what I have learned (classroom or self-taught) for the betterment of me and my company.

My education is a treasure beyond compare.  Through my professors, I learned a love of the written word, how to wonder at a beautifully turned phrase, and how to read beyond the words on the page to the meaning within the work.

My education has taught me how to write.  Professors taught me the mechanics, taught me the tools, and taught me that it was ok to think differently than others.  They encouraged me to defend my thoughts – in writing and in speech.  They encouraged me to dig deeper and not be satisfied with a first try.

To all my teachers, I say thank you.  A special thanks goes to Dr. Les Bailey, Dr. Stephen Mead, and Mrs. Beth Hetzler.

What I am Thankful For – Day 6

Barn kittens on my lap

Today I am thankful for the comfort and relaxation of spending a few hours in a horse arena with my husband and daughters.  And the delight of sitting down to watch, only to have kittens crawl up on my lap and fall asleep.  One at a time, these little bundles of fur crawled up, found a spot to sit, curled up next to (or on) their buddy, and then promptly closed their eyes.  They only wake up when a horse comes too close or someone makes a loud noise.

Kittens feeling comfortable enough to trust you while they sleep is always a comfort to me.  Thank you little ones.

What I am Thankful For – Day 5

Today, I am thankful for people who are patient with me and help me to understand.  Sometimes, it’s hard for me to put into words what I want.  There are those who try to figure out what I want, and others who try to assume they know what I want.

Life is sometimes about taking what is given to you and making the best of it.  In the famous words of Tim Gunn “Make it Work!”.  I think that is going to be my motto for the next week or so.

What I am Thankful For – Day 4

Today I am thankful for my friends.  I have a group of friends that I play trivia with (go Team Tiger Blood!); friends I read books with (yay Book Nerds!); friends I go to the movies with (you know who you are); friends I work (or have worked) with; friends I went to school with; and friends I’ve had since I was young. 

All of these people have touched my life in some way and have made me the person I am.  For all the support they have lent me, for all the laughs we have shared, for the tears we have cried together, and the hours and hours of talking, I thank you.