“Every Which Way . . . . but Loose”

What a lovely Sunday morning, that I woke to.  The sun rose with a gentle light.  Birds were singing, happily.  They did not sing songs of revolution, nor for their rights, nor chaos.  They sang because they could.  Peace washed over me like a fountain and I  wished,  every living soul on this planet could partake in it.  I think it impossible, to witness a morning, full of a soothing splendor, and not feel grateful and hopeful.   It is very humbling to know the grandness of nature and it neednt’ be an ocean , nor a mountain top, a patch of sunlight will do nicely.   “Joy does come in the morning”.
I do not know the last time, that I was home for two week ends in a row.  I was not sitting here void of something to do, at least.  I never am.  I started washing the windows, a task that I abhor.  Of course, I wait til my view of the garden and the cherry tree is obscured entirely.. before I wash them.  There are eighteen windows in this old house, not counting  the sun room nor the laundry room!  Then and almost foremost, is the territory, full of fallen leaves hemmed up in every corner and about knee deep .  Gone are the days, when I accomplished such things in a single day.  I would rather cook a full meal for twenty four people and wash curtains than attempt windows and leaves. . .and besides, I am just not good at washing windows.  That beloved sun tattles on me every time.  

I decided to cook a “Sunday Dinner”.  A roast could cook slowly and so could a pot of beans.  Kyle is supposed to stop by today and I will share with Mama.  It will be a delightful diversion from my tainted windows.  I sorely miss those Sundays, a few years  back, when Mama and Daddy came.  I always find it amusing, that we will go to such great lengths to orchestrate an event, we are sure is destined to become a golden memory.  . . when the reality is, we are much more likely, to remember the “way” of life,  mostly. 
The Sundays of my childhood meant Church and Church clothes.  Hard pinching patent leathers, itchy lace, sashes and if Mama got lucky, my hair would hold curl, til we got there.  I did love Sunday school and it wasn’t just because of the cookies.  I had the sweetest teachers . . .Miss Nellie, Miss Catherine, Miss Jo and later the dear Miss Tillie.  These women made me want to be good.  I learned my verses faithfully and still hum the sweet songs, I learned. These ladies,  did not look mighty or powerful, but they were, for  their love was sufficient and enough to last a lifetime.
Now, in those days, children attended the service, afterwards.  The pianist, Miss Arahbelle , was like a quiet light.  She did not bang out the old hymns, but played them reverently.  The preachers were not quiet-and they always seemed mad about something.  I was always sure that we were all an awful lot . . . but if you caught them on a Tuesday, they were friendly, regular folks and I loved everyone of them. 
Mama tells a funny story about how one preacher saved her life.  I do not know why, Mama was in Grandmamas’ china cabinet, in the first place.  The doors were difficult to open, but Mama just snatched as hard as she could, til at last the whole cabinet tumbled over, shattering  the cups and plates, with dainty flowers on them.  The racket sent folks running and at that very moment, the preacher walked in!  Wisely, he stayed long enough, for Grandmama to regain her good sense. . .and so Mama lived to tell about it.  I suppose some memories are made in that kind of way.

I spend a lot of time remembering.  I do not want to forget the people that loved me as a child.  I do not want to forget the way of my life.  It seems like an extravagant  gift that is too grand not to talk about.  . . and  it feels selfish, not to remember.  As I washed those dirty windows I recalled all sorts of details  about my elders, my cousins and the little farm .  I do not embellish their stories, the truth is good enough.  Besides, these people in some way, belong to  my children and to Lyla, Brynn and Ryan -and the ones yet to come.  In a world ablaze with change, it does me good to remember, for it makes me  keenly aware of what really matters, what lasts – and somehow  it preserves my stamina to “act right”.
I do not only remember, when I work.  I dream too.  I do a lot of “wishful thinking”.  I can’t help but take note of what I do have right at the moment, too.  A small flock of red finches broke my trance, once.  The sunshine, at a certain hour, lit up one of the old oaks til it was a spectacular blaze of scarlet.  My boxer slept  as peacefully in the sun as the vast field in front of the rabbitpatch.  When the ladder moved, so did the boxer.  I was glad to have such a faithful dog. What a comfort, he is to me.  He is a handsome  dog , as well and earns his keep in a lot of ways.  
It didn’t matter to me which way I looked, or the direction of my gaze, this current day, I realised that God, has turned me  “every which way . . .but loose”.  -all of my life.   
By the end of the day, I had given the windows, my best shot and a few piles of leaves , now burned cheerfully. I also cleaned up my potting and planting station and took note of other tasks that loomed ahead.   
Supper was ready, when I walked in which was a good thing, for I was weary to the bone.   . . but so restored in spirit.
Since, I have been away . . all this happened.

26 thoughts on ““Every Which Way . . . . but Loose”

  1. Oh, those grandchildren! They couldn’t be any cuter. I must admit that washing windows isn’t my favorite chore, either. I would rather rake the yard than wash windows. Have you thought about writing a memoir for your family? Somehow those stories slip away so easily. There are many things l would like to ask my mother, and it’s been 12 years since she died.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. So many times in the course of a year I wish my mother was with me. To answer the questions. To tell me that story again. Or maybe just so I could gaze longingly at her and remind her how often I think of her, long after she has gone. And to thank her for a love that has lasted longer than a lifetime.


      Liked by 3 people

  2. It was wonderful to be in the Rabbit Patch today where your memories were peaceful. Because of a few careless words and actions, I felt like I was frowning from head to foot most of the day. Prayer would have worked miracles, but I wanted to be grumpy. I laughed as I wrote that. God doesn’t want me to dwell on the failings of others, and I should have turned them over to Him as soon as they happened. Thank you for helping to restore my equilibrium.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Remembering the past is a wonderful thing to do while you are working. When the sun shines it is always a beginning to a wonderful day. Love the pictures of your family and those wonderful grandchildren. Another of your magnificent posts. Hugs and love to you

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Windows? Yes …I should do that. Leaves?….Yes I should do that .Sunday dinner cooking? ….no it will just be leftovers for me. Rabbit you are just amazing and I love how you bring us all into the Patch for a lovely time of remembering.
    and …those little people…how would we enjoy life without them? God’s gift for sure.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You have such cute grandkids! And I love reading about your Sundays…they remind me of mine growing up, and you’re right, those memories stay with us always. They shaped who we are, in a very good way.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Enjoyed your reflective post and the sharing of chores that are now in my past.

    We have no garden or leaves now we are in our eighties. The indoor plants and a few beautiful things on the balcony give us joy. I employ a window cleaner and look forward to his visits and wonder that it took me all those years to let someone else do what I found so hard.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Michele:

    Have you a spy in Engleville? I fear so, for you have described my days here at the ranch, including the dastardly glass and the knee-deep leaves. Most especially, the observation that these tasks and chores are not accomplished as readily and easily as they once were. My wife and I have become fond of making such observations and concluding with “I was thirty-eight once.”
    It seemed there was no task or dream or trouble we could not tackle with zeal and stamina.
    I have found that my mind is about twenty years behind the times when it comes to its expectations of what this body and soul should be able to do. Reality has been banging on the door for some time now, but I refuse to let it in.

    On the power of people:

    “These women made me want to be good. These ladies, did not look mighty or powerful, but they were, for their love was sufficient and enough to last a lifetime.”

    Having now a lifetime to reflect on, it becomes clear how this applies to some special people in my life. My mother would be obvious, I suppose, but then there also are those from an unexpected quarter. Without blood relation or cohabitation, sometimes through nothing more than chance, ordinary people have had real and lasting impact on my life, and I am better for knowing them or having done so when they lived.

    Entering now into the season of Thanksgiving, I am thankful for the reminder that these things are eternal for us, as long as we seek to remember them. Indeed, there are gifts from which I benefit that I may be entirely unaware of and unable to enumerate. I will remember to be thankful for these, too.

    I will count your friendship among these fine gifts that add depth and hue to my life.
    One who writes narratives that parallel my own life, and makes people “want to be good” by the nature of your own goodness. I am better for knowing you.



    Liked by 1 person

    1. well, my friend, you make me especially sorry, for being so late in reading this. I declare that knowing you is like getting to know myself better. Now your concluding comments, I could sing back to you. I am so very glad to know you-that you are in this world, at the same time that I am. thank you and always a fan, Michele

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Oh my goodness… the story about your mama, your grandmama’s china cabinet, and the preacher!!! That was certainly a fortuitous arrival for your mama’s sake! Liz too gets the heebie-jeebies when the sun shines through dirty windows, “tattling” on her. Her tolerance level for such things is much lower than mine. 🙂 As always, your post was a breath of fresh air!


  9. Thank you for seeing that I must be normal…..for so many of the things you wrote here, are what I am also thinking.
    With the exception of the memories of my past…..my grown children aren’t very interested. I can tell…they change the subject! Breaks my heart and they don’t even know it.
    But I love them anyway.

    Liked by 1 person

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