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Dear Diary – What’s a little chaos between friends?

It’s been months since I’ve led worship, between the Death Flu and Covid, so I was a little nervous heading into rehearsal Thursday evening. It went pretty smoothly considering the extra distractions, and I felt like my training as a Mom and the many years of concert band practice (& that brief period of time where I struggled in a Dixieland band) kicked in and saved the night.

For me, at least.

First there was a kid playing guitar and singing loudly behind me, but rarely on time. I had to concentrate on my own timing. BUT I’m NOT complaining because this was a learning experience for him, and a time of worship. It’s so precious to hear young people worshipping and exciting to know that I can have a part in training and encouraging as they grow.

Second, there were a few younger children having a grand time screaming and playing in the sanctuary, and for me, that high-pitched screaming…the kind that sounds like someone is being murdered, is like fingernails on a chalkboard for someone else. BUT I’m NOT complaining…because there was joy in the house of the Lord.

I’ve heard musicians say that if the rehearsal is rough, the service will be smooth. I’m not sure that’s always the case. Sure, I only sang the wrong words 5 times (in one song) during rehearsal, but things can still go wrong. I sang the right words to that song during the service, but I messed up somewhere else.

Our church uses tracks. On the plus side, it helps keep us together and we can add instruments that we don’t have. We can also adjust the volume of each instrument in the mix, which is helpful when there’s a zealous electric guitar playing on the track!

It’s been just over a year since I started using them, and as the leader, I’m responsible to set them up. Which I did for rehearsal. But then our drummer found a replacement so he could play guitar, which was a good move as it created a better sound overall. But it meant I had to adjust the tracks accordingly Sunday morning. And that’s where I messed up.

I hit “play” on the last track at the end of the service, but while it said it was playing, there was no sound. No click to keep time. No cues to tell us when to sing. Nothing. Until suddenly there was a zealous electric guitar. And only electric guitar. But the service had to go on, so I started playing keys and singing when I knew it was time to come in, See, years of playing with no tracks has advantages too…I don’t depend on them.

It wasn’t until we were starting verse 2 that I realized what had happened. In addition to adjusting the volume on the instruments, you can also hit “solo” and only that instrument will play. Guess what I did?

I timed it well…my leaning over and pushing buttons so that the sanctuary was suddenly filled with a fuller sound at a good time. Hubby and Eldest Son, both church audio technicians, said they didn’t notice. But if you watch the service on YouTube, you will see me fiddle with the iPad a few times. I kept a poker face (not my usual grimace). It wasn’t perfect, but it doesn’t have to be. We’re not perfect; we’re worshipping a perfect God.

Dear Diary – Eldest son came for a visit on the weekend. It was short but lovely! And he brought me a pumpkin. Sunday afternoon we all took part in planning and carving a family jack-o-lantern. And when you’re a family of gamers…

Dear Diary – It took hours of my life. I read, and re-read, and re-read the instructions again and again. Then I had Hubby read the instructions. He also read and re-read them again and again. But I finally sewed a tea pot cozy.

I don’t even like them.

Still, I figure if we can tackle a pattern together and succeed, we can tackle almost anything!

Dear Diary – We finally had our new HVAC and water heater installed. Everything was functioning well despite being over 20 years old, but we didn’t want to wait to lose heat in the dead of winter. So we receievd several estimates and finally signed a contract in September. Between part delays, shortage of workers, and getting Covid, the installation kept getting delayed. It’s been a mild Fall so it hasn’t been an issue.

Hubby was on vacation for the 2 days that the guys were here, so he could answer questions and get instructions. And enjoy a good laugh with the boys when they found these blasts from the past hidden on a shelf above the furnace…

They also found these…

It was mostly a pile of covers, a few pages of creepy ads from back pages, and one raunchy European magazine…all mid-1970s. In 1978, I was 4 years old.

We purchased this house in 2001 so I can breathe a sigh of relief that this smut didn’t belong to my beautiful baby boys. And it never will. I shredded all the sultry photos and salacious stories! These pieces of history can easily be thrown away.

Character is what man is in the dark.

D.L. Moody

Dear Diary – It isn’t often that I can think of a smart-aleck response in the spur of the moment, and one that gets back at Youngest Son for all the short jokes. I’m not short…I’m petite!

We were fixing our plates for dinner and Youngest Son asked something and I answered. Shocked, confused, and slightly embarrassed, he replied, “Did I say that out loud?”.

I immediately (I’m proud to say) asked him, “are you OK? Is the air too thin up there?”

On an aside, Hubby doesn’t think “petite” is the right adjective for a short person. I like it because it connotes someone who may be small in stature, but also someone with a small frame, a tiny waist, a dainty demeanour. I realize short doesn’t have to connote someone who is round like a blueberry, but I’d rather view myself as a fairy princess than plump fruit!

And why do we use fruit to describe women? I’ve never heard a man called a watermelon. It seems men’s bodies are described in relation to what they do rather than food, like “swimmer’s body”.

Shouldn’t we be focusing on being in shape rather than a shape?!?

I think the next someone who refers to my body as a fruit, might just get pureed. I’m not a pear or an avocado, or a peach. I’m a woman!

Dear Diary – I didn’t dress up for Halloween this year. It was a wet Halloween too, so we didn’t have many kids come to the door.

More chocolate for me!

The week after Halloween: Don’t act like you didn’t have your kid’s chocolate for breakfast!