Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Attitude of Gratitude (Part 3)

As November ends, here is my final list of things for which I am most thankful.

  • Hugs from the Geriatrics. Since I don't get them very often, they are more and more precious.
  • Finally getting to interact with Jack-Jack for a few hours. It's amazing how quickly children will play with you after bribing them with chocolate chip cookies. (I promise this experience was not as creepy as that sentence sounds!)
  • Texting with a far away friend. I love getting to catch up with you and laugh at each other. So glad you have been in my life for so many years.
  • Memphis barbecue! Sorry, Texas, but yours just doesn't compare in my completely biased opinion.
  • The sound of Mom's laughter when she finds something extremely funny.
  • Good friends to help when I'm inept.
  • Early bed times!
  • Restaurant gift cards. Such a great excuse to try something new.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Hits and Misses (November 20-26)

Here's a look back at the week that was.....

  • Thanksgiving Break could not have come at a better time. Even though it was only a few days, the time at home was just what I needed. It was wonderful to see family, enjoy good food, and get some much needed rest.
  • Before heading home, I played my final student recital of this semester. That is definitely worth celebrating! Now I shift my focus to juries and finals.
  • I have now been introduced to essential oils....and I'm becoming a believer! Before leaving Plainview, I mentioned that I was experiencing some tingling in the tip of my nose -- almost like an allergic reaction. Kim made up a roller bottle of Lavender for me to use. After just a few applications, my nose is much better.....and I'm also experiencing better sleep as a bonus.
  • For this non-sports fan, television during Thanksgiving weekend can be challenging. I'm thankful for TV On Demand!

  • I love my family, but we they are all very loud! Put all those voices and laughter in a very live acoustic space and you have a recipe for my sensory overload. Once everyone left, I had to find a quiet corner for a little while. Simply put, I was overwhelmed!
  • It has become more challenging than ever to find food while traveling. My connection in Houston gave me just enough time to walk from one gate to another. Imagine my surprise when I realized there was no food to buy along my route. I was never so happy to see an almost stale loaf of bread and sandwich meat when I arrived at the Geriatric Ward!
  • Cold showers will definitely open your eyes fast.....but it wasn't what I hoped for on Tuesday morning before leaving my apartment. I'm just hoping that it was a one time issue and not something that needs to be fixed this week.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Attitude of Gratitude (Part III)

In this Thanksgiving week, I continue to be reminded of just how blessed I am by things big and small.

  • Home! It's wonderful to have a place to return for rest, family, and unconditional love. I'm looking forward to spending a quiet few days back in Arkansas with those I love.
  • Healthy aging parents. Dad turned 80 a few days ago. I'm blessed to have both of my parents with me and still in relatively good health.
  • God's Word. What a treasure to have these powerful words in my hands daily. They are life. They are comfort. They are rest.
  • Colleagues. I am continually reminded of what a great group of people I get to serve with at WBU. It's much more than just a job. These people are my friends and musical family.
  • Massage chairs. I especially needed 30 minutes in the chair between recitals.
  • Wireless headphones. I've needed a pair for a while and finally splurged on myself. What a difference they made!
  • Affirmation. It's always nice to be reminded in subtle ways that I'm making a difference and that God continues to actively use me to touch others.
  • Donuts! More than just the yummy squares of dough and cake, I treasure the laughter and moments of encouragement that occur as I share these nuggets of goodness with others. I'm already looking forward to next week's adventure.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Hits and Misses (November 13-19)

It's getting posted a bit later than I like, but nevertheless, here's a look back at the week that was....


Another recital down for the semester! Despite illness and general fatigue, the ladies sang beautifully. I'm thrilled that I got to be part of this program.

Nothing relieves stress like good, old-fashioned belly laughter with students. On Friday, a young man arrived to class armed with fried pies and a desire to bring a little levity to the end of a busy week. We relaxed around the table, shared "war stories," and still managed to accomplish what we needed to for the day.

I found myself crashing in bed shortly after leaving the recital stage on Friday afternoon. I don't think I moved all night long and finally woke around 11 the next morning. The sleep was exactly what my body needed!


The most humorous event of the week came at the chiropractor's office. I was lying on the roller table and noticed that another gentleman was able to gracefully plant his feet on each side of the table and stand up. I convinced myself I could do the know, because I'm so tall and graceful on my feet. Once I realized this was not going to work, I also became horribly aware that I was twisted on the table and was close to falling off! Fortunately one of the aides saw me thrashing my arms and legs in the air and rushed in to lend me a hand. Nothing was hurt in this episode....except my self-esteem and reputation.

Stubborn people are so frustrating! Few things infuriate me more.

Broken promises are almost as bad, though. If you tell me you are going to offer a service.....or help with a project.....and simply don't follow through AND don't think it necessary to let me know before I'm expecting the promised action to occur......I'll probably end up very frustrated and thinking a little more carefully before trusting you again.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Attitude of Gratitude (Part II)

Here are the things that I am particularly grateful for this week.

  • Successful performances - I love what I get to do for a living, but the preparation for recitals can sometimes be stressful. I'm always thankful when the preparation results in successful presentations of beautiful music.
  • Cooler weather!
  • Presidential election results. I'm just going to leave it at that simple statement.
  • Time on the couch. It's so nice to have some time to come home, change into comfortable clothes, and just plop on the couch for a bit to unwind.
  • Good books!
  • Ice cream. Even the worst of days are made better with a frozen treat.
  • Relief from pain. I don't deal with a lot of pain, but when I do, I'm reminded how blessed I am to not face chronic suffering on a daily basis. I'm also thankful for my chiropractor who listens to my ailments and helps me get relief.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Hits and Misses (November 6-12)

Here's a look back at the week that was....

  • Daylight Savings Time has been a life saver! The extra hour of sleep on Sunday was exactly what I needed. The darkness coming a bit earlier is also helping me to wind down easier each evening.
  • I enjoyed watching the national election results come in on Tuesday night. What can I say? I'm a bit of a political junkie. Since I wasn't expecting the Presidential election to turn out as it did, there was unexpected excitement as I watched. I finally called it quits at 1:30am and woke to the results the following morning.
  • Thursday morning was one of the best days I've had in a while. An unexpected morning call from Jeff and Paulie put a smile on my face and made me laugh throughout the day. I'm anxious to see both of these guys -- as well as other friends -- when I head to Cali in January for a fraternity brother's nuptials.
  • Two more recital hearings were successfully completed this week and the first senior recital of the semester was performed on Friday afternoon. I'm beginning to see the light at the end of what has proven to be an extremely busy semester.

  • Social media has not been a fun place after the election. Lots of hurtful comments have been made on both sides of the aisle. I've attempted to stay out of the fray. However, when I saw a negative comment directed toward my brother and his military service, I became livid. If I had been near enough to "reach out and touch someone" I probably would have.
  • I've been riding the struggle bus this week. I never felt that I could get it together. Honestly, I think I was facing a tough case of the blues and just didn't handle it very well. I'm thankful to have had some time alone with my thoughts this weekend in the hopes that I'll have a better week ahead.
  • It's never fun to get disappointing news, but it's part of life. When it is unexpected, bad news can be more difficult to successfully manage.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

An Attitude of Gratitude

November is typically when people begin to list the many things that they are thankful for. I'm participating in the month of thankfulness as well. However, this year I've decided that private reflection on the blessings in my life is how I want to spend my daily moments of thanksgiving. I don't want to fall into the trap of carefully crafting my words for public consumption only instead of expressing authentic praise to God for the good things He has provided. Nevertheless, I do want to publicly acknowledge some of my blessings. That's where this series of blog posts comes in. Each Wednesday in November, I'll be listing a few of the things that I have been thankful for during the week. Sometimes you may notice that an item was repeated from a previous week. Some items may include a brief explanation while others stand alone. Regardless of what they may mean to you -- and whether you fully understand why I'm thankful for certain things -- this will be my way of publicly expressing "An Attitude of Gratitude" to my Heavenly Father for the many blessings He daily bestows on me.

This week, I'm thankful for...

  • The wonderful people that fill my life
  • Laughter
  • Traveling mercies -- I've spent too many years behind the wheel of my car to ever take safe travels for granted!
  • Music
  • Good food
  • Rest
  • Love


Monday, November 7, 2016

Hits and Misses (October 30 - November 5)

Here's a look back at the week that was...

  • WBU's production of Little Shop of Horrors is now in the books. It was a great production and one I was glad to participate in. Now that it's over, I'm able to focus on other upcoming performances.
  • As the week came to a close, I attended the regional NATS competition at WT. I thought all of my singers performed well and most got very good comments. It was also very good to hear some great singing from around the area.
  • While the competition began to wind down, I was able to catch my breath after an extremely busy few weeks.

  • I'll keep this section simple. Sometimes saying less is more effective.
  • I hate wasting my time.
  • Confusion --especially when it can be avoided -- is incredibly frustrating.
  • There are times when my hands and brain simply will not connect when playing. *Throw hands in the air.* Then say, "Sorry!"