Wednesday, March 1, 2017

"It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade." ~ Charles Dickens, 'Great Expectations'

I do appreciate those who hang in there with me each day. Now we are off and running in the brand new month of March. You know. The one with all the winds. Many hope it will blow some springtime into our lives. For me, I would just as soon keep the cooler weather year round, but, I know God told Noah that as long as the earth stands the seasons will continue. (Genesis Chapter 8) And, we all know that planting and harvesting are pretty important. Like, the food we eat and minor things like that. Therefore, I welcome you once again to today's visit on this Wednesday, March 1, 2017. The wife returned this past Monday morning in time to participate in the services at the elderly apartment complex. She then ran some errands. I knew she would be pretty tired from her journey and all the other stuff she engaged herself in. I came into the kitchen and what to my wondering eyes? (I am entitled to use the wondering eyes metaphor. After all, it's in that book about Santa.) There she was, totally immersed in cooking one of the grandest suppers I've had in a long time. Smothered fried steak, rice and gravy, field peas, fried okra, mustard greens, a skillet of piping hot cornbread, and a tall glass of iced tea. I couldn't believe it. I heard her tell her sister that she believed she had made her husband happy. She did. I enjoyed it all. Oh, I forgot. Dessert. Crumbled up cornbread with just enough milk poured over it to make it a little soggy. I'm not sure, but I may have had a preview as to what will be served at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. (The Revelation of Jesus Christ, Chapter 19)

I had not expected her to do that. I actually didn't want her to over-extend herself. She did exactly that. When she finished up in the kitchen, we sat down to watch a rerun of Alaska State Troopers. She's not one to sleep sitting up, but, it wasn't long before she was out and sleeping like a baby. I couldn't help but remember her Grandma Rawles who used to do the same thing but would only own up to just resting her eyes. Periodically, I saw her head bob up and down and she would wake up, act like she was still watching the troopers do their thing, and then back to la la land. I know she was bone tired. I know she did what she did for me. That makes me thankful to God for her and her heart. What's that? You think maybe it was sympathy because I always act so neglected when she is gone? Good call. Maybe that final scene in the original Home Alone movie came to her mind. You know the one. Guilt-ridden mommy finally gets back to the house where Kevin has been left all alone. Nah. I don't think that was it. I think she did it to make me happy. I'm almost certain she wasn't testing the limits of my blood sugar device although it did make a whimpering sound when it posted my result on Tuesday morning. Bottom line, I am blessed and she is a huge part of God's provision in my life.

Those memorable meals also connect me back to my roots. While I enjoy a really well-prepared meal at a great restaurant, I must tell you I prefer that homecooked throwback supper every time, no matter what. There's a lot wrapped up in why I enjoy it so much. Call it the Mayberry effect or just age related escapism, but, it takes me back. My mom, my grandmother, my wife's mom, her grandmother, I can see them standing over a hot stove. Literally. Preparing food on purpose. Sure, we had to eat, but I remember something Granny Mac told me many years ago. She said the most important ingredient in cooking is caring. I believe she was right. Monday evening my meal was seasoned with that secret ingredient. You can't buy it and you can't learn how to have it from a recipe book. Truly in this matter, the matter of the heart becomes the heart of the matter. Okay. I think I've made my point. I heard again a very funny song the other evening. The lyrics were written to be sung to the famous Ghostriders in the Sky tune. This one was entitled Ghost Chickens in the Sky and I laughed all the way through it. Read it. Sing the words. You know the tune. I'll see you next time and may God bless. Amen. ....More later.

A chicken farmer went out one dark and dreary day, He stopped to sit beside the coup to break along his way, When all at once a rotten egg hit him in the eye, It was a sight he dreaded...Ghost Chickens in the sky.

Bawk, bawk bawk bawwwwwkk,
Bawk, bawk bawk bawwwwwkk,
Ghost Chickens in the sky

The farmer had raised chickens since he was twenty-four Been workin' for the Colonel some thirty years or more Raisin' all these chickens then sending them to fry Now they want revenge... Those chickens in the sky. 

Their beaks were black and shiny, their eyes a burnin' red, They had no meat or feathers, these chickens all were dead. They picked the farmer up and he died by the claw. They cooked him extra crispy...and ate him with cole slaw.
(Chorus - repeat last line)

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