Claim to fame?

I ran into my second cousin at Costco yesterday. She informed me that one of our great-great-somethings wrote a song for Elvis, she thought….

Naturally, I looked it up. And, wow, she is correct! I’m not certain of who specifically the woman was, but I think it was a great-great-aunt. My dad’s mother’s aunt, I think. But it might have been her cousin. Actually, her cousin makes more sense, based in lifetime… hmm… Well, I sent it to my dad just now, and I’m hoping he’ll be able to tell me where she was in the family! Super cool to learn, nonetheless.

“Heartbreak Hotel,” co-wrote by someone in my bloodline. Way cool. Haha

Post-a-day 2022

What would you do-oo-oo…

… for a Klondike bar?!

William Isaly created the Klondike bar back in 1922. That’s a hundred years ago. One-double-zero. Years. He named them after the Klondike river up in the Yukon (in Canada), supposedly because he wanted the name to elicit a sense of cooler-than-cold cold. They were a local item for years and years, sold in Ohio and Pennsylvania, and originally six for $1.49. Eventually, they turned massive, though.

And they’re still famous today.

What is one big part of that fame, you wonder? In my opinion, it was the branding. Sure, they’re delicious. But why do we have some in our freezer right now? Because my man started whistling the jingle the other day, and we haven’t been able to stop thinking about them since. What’s more, they’re a blast to eat, because I feel so snooty and fancy every time I open one up with that fancy foil wrapper. Mr. Isaly knew what he was doing, wrapping them in foil. And Mr. Whoever-it-was was the same when he added the jingle in 1982. Thank you, both!

And thank you, God for such a silly and delicious treat! Amen.

Post-a-day 2022

Talk about a blast…

This evening and tonight were awesome. Sure, the cooking started and ended much later than they were scheduled to happen. However, the enjoyment of one another’s company initially was awesome, and the merriment had after dessert was spectacular. We ended up calling my man’s grandmother for her birthday after my mom and stepdad left. Today was her 91st birthday, you see. My man has been learning to play the piano, and we had gone through “Happy Birthday”, with him playing the top melody and my playing the bottom’s chords.

But get this: All of my instruments are at his house now. So…, we pulled out the xylophone and recorder for my brother and my sister-in-law to play, and my step-sister, who actually is a singer, sang with all of our playing.

I tell you truthfully, it was absurd. It sounded and felt like a little kids’ beginner band performance. But how else could it have been when the person leading the main melody on piano not only counted off wrong but played all weird timing throughout the entire piece(!)???!!! So, on his, “One, two, three,” my brother came in on the three for the pick-up notes on the xylophone – correctly so. But my man didn’t start his pick-up notes until the next beat(!!). So, it was a rocky start. But he then kept holding notes longer than usual all over the place, messing with all of us. So, that was terrible, right? Well, we also had my sister-in-law playing on the recorder, which was actually not an easy instrument for her – though she is not very musically inclined in the first place. She topped it off, sounding just like the little kid on clarinet whose reed squeaks on all the main held notes at the beginning and end of each phrase.

It

was

spectacular.

Truly.

And then we played “Heart and Soul” on the xylophone, my brother and I, even though there weren’t quite enough notes on the small xylophone for us to play the whole thing, even with us inverted, melody down low and chords up top.

And then we had an awesome time in general, just goofing around and hanging out, enjoying being ourselves together.

Thank you, God, for this amazing night. Please, grant us all beautiful and effective sleep and rest tonight, that we awaken ready and able to pursue your will fully tomorrow morning. In your name, I pray. Amen.

Post-a-day 2022

Oh, joy! I sing to thee!

And the piano progress continues! Tonight, he asked me to show him something new or else something to do differently with that four-chord progression (CGAmG). So, we talked about sheet music! He had played clarinet back in school, so he still somewhat remembered how to read treble clef, though he didn’t even know how I knew it was treble clef… 😛 Nonetheless, he may or may not have ever used bass clef, but he learned the notes in it on the piano tonight!

Note: He is not a fan of having to hit middle C with the left hand. Too far up, he says. Wait until he gets into music that actually has a load of ledger lines up in the middle! 😛

I pulled up easy “Ode to Joy” sheet music for him and showed him how to go through one clef at a time, and then how to start to put it all together slowly, but surely. And he played for an hour+ tonight, working on that piece and taking a mental test a bit to play around with the four chords for about five minute somewhere near the end. He’s doing an awesome job, and it really seems like he really likes it. I am so excited both for the now and for the future with this!

Thank you, God, for this wonderful blessing of a man and of music. In your name, I pray. Amen.

Post-a-day 2022

Music

And so it happens that he plays piano now. I heard him playing around with some keys as I exited the shower tonight. I asked him why he stopped once he had, and he smiled in slight embarrassment, and said because he hadn’t known what he was doing. I got him back over to the piano, and I explained some basics, and then showed him the basic C-G-Am-G chord progression and how to play with key strokes and rhythms within it – all white keys!! – and set him loose. He was practically fighting me at first, suggesting that he would be terrible and his hands are too clumsy and blah, blah, blah… Now, he has been going for almost half an hour, and it could be music he’s reading for all I can hear. He’s doing an amazing job already, and I’m thoroughly enjoying listening to him play, not simply because he’s the one doing it, but because it is actually enjoyable music and playing. Thank you, God.

We certainly shall have a house filled with love and music. Thank you, God, for such a wonderful blessing. Amen.

Update: He played for over 45 minutes, and I think he only stopped, because he was just so darn sleepy from a very long week this week and day today.

Post-a-day 2022

Bedtime

Lying on the bed, we listen to “You’ve got a lover” by Shake Russell. It was not planned. I was just looking for a YouTube version to send to someone who loved it when we had sung it the other day. But I listened to the whole thing after sending it to her. We listened. And it was a beautiful bedtime meditation. Thank you, Shake Russell. And thank you, God, for such amazing creativity and talent and artistry and work to be shared with the world and with us specifically. Amen. Amen. Amen. Praise be to God. And thanks be to Shake. Amen.

Now, go listen to it yourself: “You’ve got a lover”

Post-a-day 2022

Puccini

Turandot is a spectacular spectacle – Puccini certainly got it right and did it well with this one, y’all. I almost cried twice, and then did cry near the end, all because of the music – it was so amazing. Robert Wilson’s visionary directing was spectacular in and of itself, yes. It was so fun and cool and amazing. But the music itself held its own… it was satisfying and utterly fulfilling… and, boy darn, was it good… Just wow…

Thank you, Houston Grand Opera, for this spectacular performance. And thank you, God, for allowing me to witness it… in gratitude, I pray. Amen!

P.S. One of the main characters suddenly had to step out (I believe it was today), and so another member of the cast played her physical role, while Juliet from the current production of Romeo and Juliet stood on the side of the stage with a music stand and in a black dress and sang the part. “Like no other,” the creative director said in his pre-show announcement, and it truly was. It was amazing on all accounts. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Amen!

Post-a-day 2022

Speaking in song

“Have I told you lately that I love you?” I ask as I approach a friend first thing in the morning, at the gym. “And that I am incredibly grateful to have you in my life?”

He smiles a huge, clearly grateful smile, chuckles slightly, and replies, “Same,” slightly embarrassed yet glad.

Somehow, that song lyric was in my head as I walked up to him, and I realized that it was a valid thought to be having, too – I hadn’t told him lately that I love him. He is a very dear friend of mine, and I am incredibly grateful to have him in my life. I tell others this somewhat often, and I usually tell him, too. But I hadn’t lately. And our interaction yesterday merely supported how awesome he is and how wonderful it is and has been to have him in my life, especially this past year. True friends are a gift from God, I swear.

Thank you, God, for love and life and true friends. Thanks be to God, Hallelujah, and Amen!

Post-a-day 2022

America!

Tonight, we attended a performance by the wonderful, fun musical group America. They were friends as teenagers living in England way back when their parents were stationed there in the military, I believe in the 1970s. They opened for Pink Floyd when they were 18, and have been going strongly ever since, doing roughly 100+ concerts yearly for 52 years.

As the different songs came on, seeing my mom was one of the coolest parts of the night. “Gah, I feel like I’m 15..,” was what she said early on when a particular song played that had often played at her school dances back in high school. On one, when it started, she said something like, ‘Oh, this one is s total make-out song,’ referencing how all the kids would get together for this song at dances. It was really fun, but also informative – it was great getting to see this history of my mom, as well as enjoy it all with her myself.

Thank you, God, and thank you, America, for such a wonderful night! In your name, I pray. Amen.

Post-a-day 2022

Heart and soul

Tonight, my mom and I continued our tradition of going to Shake Russell concerts. It was amazing, wonderful, so many good words and feelings. The venue was an adorable old barn-type place in town that we had never before noticed but that has apparently been a music venue for small events since 1969. Lyle Lovett and Shake Russell and many other known names apparently played there all throughout the years. And it was palpable in the space. Also, the sound system was awesome – the kind where you don’t even notice there’s a sound system, because it just works so beautifully and effectively.

Uh… it was just wonderful, y’all…

God blessed this night.

God, thank you for such an amazing and wonderful and heart-filling night tonight. Thank you for the absolute blessing that is Shake Russell and his music. And thank you for my family and all of the love that surrounded me tonight. I love you. Thank you. Please, guide me to fulfill your will in all things through my life. In your name, I pray. Amen.

Post-a-day 2022