Monday, November 22, 2010

In Memory of Jeremiah True Harrell


Day is done, gone the sun,
From the lake, from the hills, from the sky;
All is well, safely rest, God is nigh.

Fading light, dims the sight,
And a star gems the sky, gleaming bright.
From afar, drawing nigh, falls the night.

Thanks and praise, for our days,
'Neath the sun, 'neath the stars, neath the sky;
As we go, this we know, God is nigh.

While the light fades from sight,
And the stars gleaming rays softly send,
To thy hands we our souls, Lord, commend.


Today the family gathered to celebrate the short and blessed life of Jeremiah True Harrell, first child of our son Jeremy and his wife Elisha. He was born in joy, with no problems expected, only to be termed critical immediately and taken from them barely ninety minutes later. His service today was as beautiful as it was heart breaking.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Making Pottery Gifts with Elisha

Elisha's first day of maternity leave was yesterday, and we enjoyed it together while Jeremy was at work and John made his way through his "Daddy Do" list.

Actually, John did amazingly well, installing security lights, extra door locks, changing furnace filters and light bulbs on really high ceilings. Then he managed to change a vehicle light bulb that the service stations were going to charge the kids an hour of labor to "figure out," because their car is a Prius, and nobody knows how to work on them. They opened the compartment to change the bulb during an oil change and said the bulbs couldn't be reached. Oh, yeah. The mighty John figured it out and had it done in ten minutes.

Elisha took me to her favorite gift-making place. It's called Arts on Fire, and is a pottery shop here in Shreveport, where you paint the unfired pottery and then they fire it for you. Of course, it looks very dull and bland before it's fired, so it's hard to tell what color you're really painting, but she said that you get used to that. I think I still prefer plaster craft, which is basically the same thing, but it's done on pre-fired pottery where what you see is what you get.

Still, we had a great day. Elisha picked a gift for my mom's 90th birthday next month, and I painted a piggy bank for their baby. I wish I had thought to take more photos of the pig once I had finished painting it, but I forgot. It looks pretty boring the way it is now, but I added some little animal stencils and JTH, the baby's initials. He'll be the third JTH, by the way, following John Thomas and Jeremy Thomas. I love the name Jeremiah True.

I actually tried to talk John into Jeremiah when Jeremy was born, but John preferred the name Jeremy, and now I'm glad he did, since my first grandson will get the name I've always loved so much.

It was a wonderful day, full of painting and laughing. The owner is an interesting woman named Quincy. She gives just the right amount of help—whatever you need without telling you how she thinks it should be done. She's warm and friendly and handled the table full of pre-teen giggling girls having their first-time painting experience with only one mom to watch them with such ease I thought she'd been doing it for years.

Elisha filled me in. Quincy had never painted before, when the shop owner decided to sell out. One of her twin daughters loved to paint there, so she and her husband decided to buy the place. And that's how history is written, I guess. Our children introduce us to the some of the best paths in our lives.

Shreveport is having a Blues and Jazz Festival today, and we're going to try to get to that, as long as Elisha is feeling up to it. She's still sleeping right now, since with only 3-4 days left until the baby's delivery date, she's up and down all night visiting the euphemism down the hall. As all good babies know, it's important to find mama's bladder and rest there as soon as she gets to sleep. (Thanks for that, Jeremiah True... You're getting her prepared for the ups and downs of nighttime feedings.)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Laughing and Waiting in Shreveport

After five days in Dallas visiting John's cousins, we traveled on to Shreveport, Louisiana to see Jeremy and Elisha. Their son, Jeremiah True, our first grandson and third grandchild, is due on the 17th of this month. We've been having so much fun visiting and laughing together.

There are too many things parents have to buy when they're expecting a child—especially their first. People have been very generous, sending them gifts for this baby, but there were still many additional expenses for them, of course. I finally had to explain that the fun part of being Grandparents is that we don't have to buy anything. Whatever we get is the fun stuff that we decide we simply want to buy. Today we found nine Dr. Seuss books at Sam's Club. I had already checked prices on them at Amazon, and these came three for eleven something. The ones at Amazon would have been nearly triple that. What fun to fill a grandchild's book shelf. (Well, he still needs the shelf...)

Jeremy has to work tomorrow, so Elisha and I plan to go to her favorite craft store where they do ceramic painting. We're going to do a piggy bank for Jeremiah. I have a feeling John will stay at their house, working on his "Daddy Do" list. He's really been going through a bunch of fix-up projects for them. What a hero.

This has been a wonderful trip. Their home is warm and welcoming, and they're so cute in their excitement. I just love being here.