Its September again (almost mid month by now)! Many mothers and others might be humming the happy back-to-school song. The first day of school is like my new year- I have more control over my own schedule again! I'm celebrating my new year by starting the first of my 2011 calendar drawings, which will all have water in common. (My 2010 calendar is done and features trains). The first drawing I'm doing for '11 may take awhile- it's been taped to the side of my dresser for years, and is of my oldest brother, Jack, fishing in the Gunnison River on a Colorado family vacation. I'm not sure what year it's from, but it doesn't really matter. He's in the river of time, doing one of the things he loved doing most in the world. It predates 1989, the year he died. He's wearing a windbreaker (are nylon jackets still called windbreakers?) that Mom and Dad brought us back from Hawaii as souvenirs. I showed Mom and Dad my start this morning and they recognized the place instantly. We have all been at that spot- I remember playing with a red balloon and some carnations with my niece, Kathy, on one of the rocks there, when Jack was trying to fish.
My youngest son, J, starts middle school this year and catches a ride to school with his Dad now. Thus my morning ritual of standing by the side of the road with one of my three children is over after 21 years of early morning fog, occasional rain showers, swirling leaves, snow pants, boots, windchill, small talk and waving to passing cars (if we waved to at least two people, we were assured of having a good day- my declaration) is over. I'm ready for the next chapter.
J and I enjoyed a reunion bluegrass show at the Bainbridge Town Hall Opry this past Saturday night when the Lockwood Family returned to the stage after a 25 year hiatus. We saw them perform back in the early '80s. The original brothers have grown and had families. Brother Tim was visiting from his home in Panama, so a reunion show was held and enjoyed by the audience. Mother, Mary, manned the bass as she did in the old days, as well as sister, Mary, and Jonathon's wife. The children all got to sing on stage with their parents- I especially like the fishing song written and performed by young Mary and her two kids.
My Mom always heads for the family piano in our dining room, and plays the same song her Dad used to play- Redbird, followed by the scales. It's part of her weekly ritual along with petting, Jazz, our cat, and having pie and cocoa at Henry's the diner next door.
And nothing puts a song in my heart like the image of sunlit flowers.