Saturday, November 24, 2007

Growing Up and Holidays

With each passing year the Holiday season keeps changing. The child inside of me misses the Thanksgivng where everyone came to my parent's house. It was mass chaos, too many people in a small area, there was wasted food, wasted pop, belly aches from eating too much food, loud talkers, and football on the TV blaring. But all my brothers and sisters were there, all my family was there, I didn't realize it at the time, but they are what made my Thanksgiving so great. I know my family is not perfect and I am sure there was drama at each holiday, but for some reason I don't remember those things.
We now have to make specific times for family to "fit" everyone in. We no longer make time for the ones we love, we schedule time. My holidays consist of watching the clock and watching people's feelings. I miss the Christmas with Jody in his stocking hat, Marla slowly moving around, barely awake, Jenny running into my room, "You have to see what Santa brought you", and Jonathan soon to follow with stocking in hand. I can remember one Christmas present I received, the trampoline. But I have numerous memories of Christmas time with my family that I wouldn't trade for a million presents. The greatest present I received as a child was being born in to the Richardson/Hendricks family.
I do enjoy my holidays now too, they are just changing. I have two of everything; now my little family is making thier own traditions, but it is hard letting go of past traditions. I love my family, all of my family, and I hope we continue to grow.

Happy Holidays

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Last Tuesday night I got a call from my mother in law asking if I would be able to sing at a funeral Friday. A friend of her's husband had died and she had heard me sing at Pat's father's funeral and wanted me to sing at her husband's funeral. I was really flattered but I had Chemistry on Friday. I figured out a way to leave chemistry lecture early and come back a little late to chemistry lab and still be able to sing at the funeral. I spent a good part of the day on Wednesday finding the requested music. I really dislike singing to tracks, but I didn't know if they would have an accompanist or not. By the end of the day I was freaking out because I couldn't find a track for one of the songs they wanted, O Danny Boy--yes, not the typical funeral song, but it was the mans favorite song and honestly a song I really like. I finally was able to find it, but it was in a book and I had to buy the CD to go along with it. I ended up spending a little over $40 on music. Yikes. But I was still really honored that someone outside the family, someone I didn't even know, wanted me to sing! Did I mention this was a Catholic funeral? Wednesday night, three music stores later, I get a call from the music director from the church where the funeral was to be held. A few Catholic rules you may be unaware of, (1) You are to sing to live music, no tracks allowed.(I was able to take all the music back at least) (2) They are picky about what songs are allowed to be sung, NO Danny Boy allowed. (3) The music director must sing th majority of the music (she has a contract). Interesting. I am to meet with the accompanist that they provide, 45 minutes before the funeral and I will be singing Amazing Grace and In the Garden. WHAT! I am a perfectionist, I like to practice days in advance. Friday, I wake up a little nervous, which is strange for me, usually the day that I am to sing, I eat pepto and imodium like it is candy. I pray I don't get nervous, that the songs are comforting to the family, and that my voice is comforting as well. I stand up to sing, no nerves, no shaky voice, no sweaty, cold hands, and best of all no nervous stomach cramps. The power of God is an amazing thing. He truly rewarded me in the best way, for doing his will and using my gift to show God's comfort and empathy during trying times.
Today, I go to get the mail and there is a Thank You card from the woman. I open it up and a $100 check falls out. Are you kidding me?!? I get paid for it too!