Tag Archives: amelie belle

Thought-Collage Thursday // And it is Spring…

It’s that time again – a Thursday!

I have now claimed this day to actually, indeed, collage my thoughts.  Aren’t you the lucky one?

Thursdays are good.  I like Thursdays.  I was born on a Thursday and even though “Thursday’s child has far to go,” and there couldn’t be a more accurate assessment of almost any particular day of my life (I love lists and yet, my list is never done), Thursdays, in general, are quite nice.  It’s like ~ the bulk of the week is behind us, the beauty of a weekend ahead, but there is still hope everything will get done, wrapped up, finis.  It probably won’t, but on Thursday?  The possibility seems obtainable.  *sigh

Plus, I pre-school Amelie Belle on Thursdays and each Third Thursday, monthly – I get to see my Supper Club peeps.

And, it’s spring.


Oh, how I have longed for you, sweet spring.

“Is the spring coming?” he said. “What is it like?”…

“It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine…” ~ Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

Brought to you by the number 4

Amelie Belle turns 4 in a few days.  So today we did lots of “4” activities.  We baked cakes, we painted, we danced, we traced letters and free-styled some art, we taped and glued and sang and read 2 books and counted and reviewed shapes.

amelie pre-school

I am learning so much in pre-school!  :)

“Holy Grounds”

“…and the sound of a stirring rod batting powdered cream into a small quantity of coffee…”

I read this hilarious blog post about all the weak, barely-brown, super-hot, white Styrofoam cups of coffee we church types have consumed in fellowship halls, foyers and church basements for, lo, these many years.  But the writer sees something more there:

“It’s a material appearing of the Church universal, a visible sign of our invisible communion with one another and with God himself. I can walk into any fellowship hall, head for the refreshments table, and mix myself a sweetened milky-brown cup of coffee that puts me in touch with millions of believers around the world as they gingerly sip the same drink.”  -Martyn Jones

coffee in styro

I know I have cupped many a white Styrofoam vessels of coffee among the saints, left my own fingernail imprints about the rim, and maybe even spilled some on the indoor-outdoor carpet of questionable color, purchased for just such occasions. It is bland, but it is the cup of fellowship, week in and week out.  READ HERE

THEN my daughter Stephanie sent me this

An even funnier blog post about how to tell if you were raised by religious parents (directed at my kids’ generation).  I was terrified to read it because I feared I might find myself as a parent in there.  Well, I totally did!  I laughed until I cried, though, and then read it to Dave and laughed even more.  He lists 21 possible tell-tell signs and we may or may not have been guilty of 19…or so.  {CLICK HERE}

5. Every time you heard a loud rumble of thunder in the middle of the night you thought it was The Rapture.

6. If you grew up in Church of God, your college options were either Lee University or Lee University.

12. The only R rated movie you were ever allowed to watch was The Passion of the Christ.

13. You had a cassette tape labeled “Michael W. Smith” but it was actually an MC Hammer mix tape because you would never be allowed to listen to that.

I totally saw my childhood C of G tribe imprint in this list…And, it is kind of amazing my own kids turned out.  Haha.


The Kelley kids on keyboard

Where have all the flowers gone?


What the ever-loving heck?  Why can I open a name-brand bag of frozen, chopped broccoli and find only 5 or 6 small-sized florets with a huge pile of broc-stalks?  I realize broccoli has stalks, I just refuse to believe that I am paying for only 5 or 6 small florets of broccoli.  And dang the corporate executive who thought that since I was buying a bag of stalks anyway, I should just as well get some below-the-stalk pithiness, too!  I am not a woodchuck and don’t like gnawing my greens.  I don’t have all day to masticate, people! The lesson: BUY FRESH!

My Super-Power: Leveling

When I am sitting up straight, completely straight as far as I can tell, my head is sort of leaning to the left.  It just is.  I was actually born with this totally bent-neck-head thing and they corrected my newborn-neck with sand bags on either side of my head and me screaming for hours.  I don’t like anything pinning my down now, either.  So, I am crooked.

My whole life, photographers would say: straighten your head.  When I told them it was, they’d “manually” adjust me and it would feel like I was going to fall over on my right side. I’d lose all perspective. It feels so wrong.

Somehow in spite of this “leaning” challenge, I can tell if something is level to within a 16th of inch.  It is true.  I can be walking down a hallway, 40 feet away, see a group of men hanging a poster, satisfied that they have just perfected it, and tell them exactly how far off it is – and which direction – to within a 16th of an inch, no kidding. Boom!  No one likes me around when there are posters to be hung.

What does this particular super-power mean in my everyday life?  That I have to walk through every room of my house daily and try to ignore the things on my walls, because every. single. thing. is. slightly. OFF.  But in totally different directions.  Jesus, have mercy on me!  Makes me crazy!

Sometimes a super-power just doesn’t pay.

The picture I wasn’t going to show.


Because:  Amelie = adorable.  All of the pictures in the background = crooked.

But it is spring.  It is spring…



Thought-Collage Thursday // Song is My Native Language

amelie belle at pre-school

Nonna – can we put the music on?”  Amelie asks me so sweetly every Thursday morning when she arrives for pre-school.  We talk about pushing the big, rectangle button on the surround-sound, then carefully lifting the lid to place an LP on the player.  Then we lift the lever, place the arm over the spinning vinyl, and lower the lever with great care.  Then we lower the lid and after just a bit of crackling,  the dancing begins.

She loves the process, the steps to using the turntable.  She speaks them softly as she reverently plays a record, today: The Fabulous Fifties, last week, some Andy Williams.  I am trying to expose my grandbebes to older, American classics in music, for the new they will always find.  So I start them on 40s love songs and 60s Motown.  As they get older (like Gavin and Hunter), they want to hear the Footloose album or a song like “The Night Chicago Died.”  But it is all “old-timey” music to them.  :)

Hey – remember the 80s?

Well, as I may have mentioned before – I barely do, but not for the “usual” reasons.  I was just busy having babies and tending to my little family back in those days.  Movies?  Music?  Who the president was?  I can hardly recall (though my huge hair and Desperately-Seeking-Susan wardrobe was fantastic).  But our friends, Mary and David, invited us to a show last weekend with a B-52s cover band called, Hey Lady.  It was an all-80s music extravaganza, even with the openers, The Retrosonics (I could sing along with a lot of their music – they were great and the lead singer is the sister of another set of great friends: Joel and Marj).  But I had mostly missed the B52s the first time around.  Ha.

hey lady

Two things became very clear to me: I really AM  from the 1970s and I need that red wig!

I don’t drink and I don’t dance (I want to – just…can’t…dance, that is), so I was out of my element, but Mary has promised we’ll go back on Karoke night sometime – because I DO love to sing!

The keyboard is currently in the living room, where I plunk and play and sing a little most days

I have hit that horrible age where every song has a memory and I burst into tears at the drop of a hat or the gentle turn of a melody.  It isn’t because the memories are sad or bad, but just because I wish I had held every moment of life a little closer and more reverently.

Now I play a chord and sing a line and I see a person or place or time in my mind’s eye.  And I cry because I am so grateful I got to live it and know the people I know and to have loved them.  And my heart is full now because understanding seems to come with age.  Not one day is unimportant.  Do you hear me?  Not one.  The tears are just the overflow of a heart that can feel, that risks feeling, more and more as time goes by.

So just let me cry when I sing.  I am that age now.


For today’s #throwbackthursday ::  Highland Park Church of God in Des Moines, Iowa.  My mom was the choir director and she started it while I was about 7, at which time she taught me to sing alto.  In fact there was a whole alto section, Rhonda Sable being the rest of it, but nonetheless – there were parts.

Junior Choir 1968 j

This picture includes all 5 of us, my siblings and myself.  I am the girl in the back row clear to the right.  While the choir had been going for a year by this time (practices on Sunday evenings at 6 pm, while the YPE (aka Young People’s Endeavor, now more commonly known as Youth Group, except with some way more hip title) met upstairs.  But in the fall of 1968, when we got our poncho-robes and bright-white bow-ties, we were certainly at the zenith of our junior choir career.  Good times.

Back row, left-to-right: the late Lonny Sable, Brenda Smith, Sharon Smith, Wesley Sable, Rhonda Sable, MOI! //  Middle row, left to right: Timmy Rodgers, Timmy Moslander, Debbie Bettis, Joey Moslander, Rebecca Sable, Darryl Sable.  Front Row, left-to-right (the junior-est of them all): Tina Slight, Laurie Rodgers, Dana Mitchell Moslander, Tami (alias Tammy) Moslander, David Bettis, Carol Bettis and the late Ramona Whorley.

Which brings me to this question:  Where has all the harmony gone?

What is up with all 5 vocalists onstage singing the melody these days?  I miss hearing harmony?  Part it out, people.

Beautiful music makes the whole world go around!  Who wants to sing with me right this second?

Grand-Bebe #6, The Tribute Videos

I made this one for my little Amelie Belle:

Then we had her family party and I couldn’t resist sharing this:


The cakes.

The cake for the guests was a 2-tier (3 layers each),  A 12″ triple-chocolate, chocolate-chip cake with Oreo-chocolate-chip mousse filling.  The top tier, a 9″ confetti cake with fluffy-whipped butter-crème filling.  Covered in a few pounds of fondant.

The number “1” cake was just for the birthday girl.  Buttercream on confetti.

Great, great joy:  The grandbebes are hearing some wonderful oldies via these videos I am making for them.  They are learning the words and singing along.  I LOVE it!  That is joy!