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My View From the Top of the Stairs

My View From the Top of the Stairs

The year was 2012. It was a Saturday in February, and I was nestled in my warm, comfy bed. Asleep. Deep, unbothered-by-dreams-or-stirring sleep.

When all of a sudden, I wasn’t.

There was a siren! I was under attack! This was the end!

I am not a fast human by nature, but in that moment I was a jungle cat. Out of the bed, down the hall, by my parents’ bedside in just a few bounds. My parents were out of town, and my dad had forgotten to turn off his no nonsense alarm set for 5 A.M.

On a Saturday.

It was one of those obstinate alarms that grows more infuriated every second that passes without silencing it. Its volume steadily ticks upward until you start to believe you’ve been transported right inside the machine and are standing directly next to the noise-making mechanism.

I hit buttons, turned knobs, and finally just ripped the stupid cord from its secure spot in the wall socket.

I walked slowly back to my bed, but not before texting my parents a long message dripping with sarcasm and irritation.IMG_3676

For as long as I can remember, John T. Brock has set his alarm to ring at 4:30A.M. If ever there was a day when I was awake before my dad, chances are I hadn’t yet been to sleep. He cuts himself some slack on Saturdays and will sleep an indulgent half hour more.

He fixes the coffee the night before and sets a timer on the pot so it will wake when he does. He pours himself the first cup of the day. Sometimes, he’ll walk to the back room, flip on the television, and stand a few minutes in the bright glow of the breaking headlines.

By 4:45, he’s settled into his chair and has already made a significant dent in his first round of caffeine.
His chair. It sits firmly by the fireplace. Beside the left arm there sits an ever-changing stack of leadership books, commentaries, and sermon notes. To its right, a small table stands at attention holding a pair of glasses and the aforementioned cup of coffee.

This is where he sits. Day after day, month after month, year after year.

The rest of the house is asleep, but my dad is awake. And he’s there at this time, in this chair, every day to meet with Jesus.

I’ve always known about his habit of waking early in the morning. I knew how he spent that time. I knew he’d be there every day. Without fail.

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Our house is laid out in such a way that when I walk from my room to the bathroom down the hall, I walk past the staircase on my left. And if I make that trek at anytime between the hours of 4:30 and 6:30 A.M., I can catch a glimpse of my dad’s knees and feet. Sitting in that chair. Talking to Jesus.

On another dark morning a few years ago, I again emerged from the comfort of my bed, slow and groggy this time, annoyed that my sleep had been interrupted by my need for the bathroom.
When I rounded the corner of my doorway and walked past that familiar first step, I caught a glimpse of a different image at the bottom of the stairs.

And I won’t ever forget it.

Knees, not crossed gingerly in his normal seated position, but pressed to the floor in front of the chair, long legs stretched out behind him. His larger-than-life, 6’4” frame bent at a ninety-degree angle. His elbows in the chair’s seat, his hands resting on his shoulders, his forehead pressed to the fabric. Praying. Interceding. Having an all-encompassing conversation with his Savior.

Until today, he never knew I saw him in that moment. He didn’t hear me get up. Didn’t hear my feet pad across the floor. Never knew for a second that someone was watching him.

But this isn’t the first time I’ve told it.

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Not long after moving to Nashville, I found myself in the middle of a conversation about parents. About our relationships to them. About how frustrating those relationships can be. I heard story after story about damaged paternal relationships, wounded and scarred by broken promises and sinful choices.

And suddenly everyone was looking at me. It was my turn. What was my father like?

“Well,” I said, “he’s like this,” and I pointed to that moment. That image. That dark morning when I caught the most beautiful glimpse of my dad’s heart.

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I won’t ever stop being grateful that the Lord woke me up at just the right time, at just the right moment for me to take that mental picture.

Because that is a picture of my dad. Not just in that moment, but in every moment. That is the physical posture of his heart. He kneels daily to seek his God and to serve the people who have been entrusted to him.

The long list of characteristics I love most about my dad all stem from and grow out of those moments. His kindness, his sacrifice, his love and devotion to his wife, his kids, his church are all marks of a man of God. But those qualities did not arise simply because he is a pastor. They didn’t come as a packaged deal when he became a Christian. They did not manifest within him because he is what the world calls “good.”

No. They did not appear by magic or happenstance.

They came with the morning. They rode in on the sun’s tide. Day after day, new mercy after new mercy, they were carved into the fabric of his DNA. He is kind because he has a standing appointment with Kindness Himself. He is devoted because he has never gotten over the devotion of a Jewish King who came to rescue him. He is sacrificial because, time after time, he has shown up and put his knees in the dust at the foot of a Roman cross and looked up at the most beautiful sacrifice this world has ever known.

He is a good father not because he is perfect or without flaw or failure, but because he starts every day at the feet of Jesus. And of all the things I’ve learned from him, this is, without a doubt, the most important lesson, and the one I am most grateful for.

Happy Father’s Day, Daddy. I love you, and I’ll never be able to tell you exactly how proud I am to be your kid.IMG_2953

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Hey, Nashville-I Just Called To Say I’m Sorry

Hey, Nashville-I Just Called To Say I’m Sorry

In 2016, I spent a significant portion of my time fighting a love for my new home. I had arrived in January with a steel resolve to be brave in the face of all the new. I was happy to be at my job, but that was about it. Though Nashville did all it could to reach out and extend a welcoming hand, I flat refused to speak. I spent the whole first year of our relationship pining over my ex. No wonder we had issues.

I stepped into a new city still hopelessly and madly in love with Florence, AL. Nashville was a fine place for some folks to live, but it just wasn’t my type. It was merely a holding spot for me. A waiting room for me to park in while I waited for the Lord to tell me I could go home.

If you go anywhere, even paradise, you will miss your home.

-Malala Yousafzai

Home. Florence. One hundred and thirty-three miles southwest where all my people were.

I had no people in Nashville, and to be honest, I did a poor job of looking for them. I held my heart so far behind me that no one could come close. At best, I planted weedy roots that were violently ripped up once or twice a month when I pointed my car toward the Alabama state line and hit the gas. My mouth complained about my lack of ties to the city, but truthfully, my heart fiercely fought any connections. I didn’t want them, and somewhere deep inside my brain, I felt like I didn’t have room for them.

If I loved Florence with my whole heart, I had no more room for a new city to love. There wasn’t space for both.

But an affection for Tennessee was rising, quiet and strong and steady in the space beneath my chest.

I saw it first in April of last year. Green was coming back into the world again, arriving in brilliance after its hiatus. It sprung from the trees with all the energy of new hope and new life. My Cruze would come to the top of a hill on my way to work, and I’d catch a glimpse of rolling hills rising like a deep breath coming straight from the earth. And I would catch mine. In the cool stickiness of summer evenings, I watched the maple leaves from my patio flutter bashfully in the breeze. On Saturday hikes, the light would cut through the wall of trees so sharply I knew it was looking for my attention.

I stretched out on grassy lawns or scrunched in age-old pews and heard the city’s wild and brilliant heartbeat through guitar strings and voices loosed. I put my hand on the pulse of music that makes this city feel alive, like the soil beneath our feet is breathing the music from its own unseen lungs. Those of us who have to obey the laws of gravity get, for a brief moment, the chance to know what it feels like to defy it.

I’ve spent much of this new year trying to quietly apologize to Nashville. And Nashville, in all her generosity, is forgiving. Through all my foot stamping and tantrum tears last year, she never stopped singing. She never let her voice get too small for me to hear. And I’m grateful for another year to hear it and another chance to really listen.

You can have more than one home. You can carry your roots with you, and decide where they grow.

-Henning Mankell

There’s room for both, I’ve learned. There’s love enough for more than one piece of geography.

And I need them both, Florence & Nashville. I need every mile.

Florence is home. Safe. Still so very needed. Always will be. When I cross the city lines, it refills my tank with courage. Tells me with its slow drawl that it’s glad to see me. Tells me it’ll be here waiting when I come again.

Nashville is growth. Smothering with its enormity. Terrifying. Luminous. Gleaming. So welcoming and warm. It pushes me to be brave. Demands more of me than I thought I could give. Asks me to climb to new heights, but promises a great view. And it delivers.

There are a thousand ways to go home.

-Rumi

So, Nashville, I just called to tell you I’m sorry. I’m glad to be here. I’m glad you welcomed me and gave me a new place to call home. I’m glad you didn’t give up on me.

And Nashville—the view really is amazing.

 

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Hey, What’s The Deal With Hot Yoga?

Hey, What’s The Deal With Hot Yoga?

I do not like hot yoga.

I could’ve said this with total confidence without ever actually going to a hot yoga class. However, my aversion for this activity has a new weight to it that comes only from personal experience. I went to hot yoga recently, and judge me if you will, but PEER PRESSURE IS REAL Y’ALL.

“You might like it, Elizabeth.”

“It’s calming, Elizabeth.”

“It releases toxins, Elizabeth.”

“You’re 24, Elizabeth; try new things.”

Let me tell you something—I did not like it. I was not calm as evidenced by the fact that I texted my mother immediately following in all caps, and I believe next time I’ll keep my toxins, thank you very much.

My friends and I arrived and paid our $10 for the class plus another $6 for a mat that had been used by a number of other people who had made the terrible mistake of not bringing their own.  The instructor behind the counter greeted us with a rehearsed smile and enthusiastically asked if we were first-timers. He had all the excitement and voice inflection of a camp counselor, and I was immediately overwhelmed by the urge to blurt out all of my thoughts and opinions about yoga just to dampen his spirit. I didn’t, but discovered later that it wouldn’t have mattered, because he was an actual yoga robot who had no feelings, only an infuriating battery life.

I did open my mouth to say something quippy and sarcastic, but judged immediately that Camp Counselor Jerry here was not playing about the hot yoga business. With a smile and a serious tone of voice that gave me a feeling similar to the one I get when I see trailers for documentary style horror films, he informed us that nothing goes into the room with us except our water and our $6 piece of foam, and we were not allowed to leave the room once we entered it as the change in temperature would be a shock to our systems.

So would a heat stroke, Camp Counselor Jerry. Did that ever occur to you?

After signing away our rights to air-conditioning and {probably} contractually agreeing to not tell anyone ever about the hot yoga robot technology they were obviously using, we were given our $6 piece of trash and sent into the room.

As soon as I crossed the threshold, the heat came over and sat right on my chest, and my brain warned me for the billionth time that this was not my scene.  

Yea, well it’s too late, Brain. We can’t leave. We’re trapped in here for the next hour. Probably forever. Thanks for nothing.

However, as I scanned the already pretty crowded room, I began to calm down slightly. With the exception of a few folks sitting up and stretching, everyone was sprawled out on their mats, eyes closed, silent.

Great, I thought. I’ve been waiting for an adult version of naptime since kindergarten. I could get on board with this.

I spun out my $6 rolled up garbage mat and followed suit.

If I had been given another ten minutes, I would’ve slept through the entire class and might have enjoyed it more. Alas, that destiny was not to be.

Just as my mind began to wind down, the door opened and in walks that dumb hot yoga robot, Camp Counselor Jerry. He rudely turned off the wonderful flute-y music that sounded like it came from fairies who live under a waterfall in Sweden and began to instruct us.

We began with a breathing routine—have you ever seen the movie I Am Legend? Will Smith and his dog (RIP) stumble upon the zombie infected people all huddled in the back of a warehouse, sleeping. He heard them breathing before he rounded the corner to see them standing in their weird undead sleep circle.

That’s the scene I thought of when Camp Counselor Jerry first asked the class to exhale.

For the next hour Robot Jerry talked nonstop. If he took a breath during the class, I certainly didn’t hear it. Another reason to believe he had a fully charged battery and a skillfully hidden on/off switch.

“Pull the top of your head towards the ground as you lift your hips toward the ceiling and really engage your core while maintaining a regular and balanced breathing rhythm. Really challenge yourself to lift your leg as high as it can go and….”

SHUT UP, ROBOT JERRY.

It didn’t take long for me to be sweating actual buckets of water. My muscles shook and my mind raced trying to follow the instructions bouncing around the room at lightning speed. Lift what? Pull what? Move what? Listen, Camp Counselor Jerry. Either you want me to lift my leg or stretch my arm. I can’t do both at one time. Which will it be?

After about 45 minutes, I was sure that I had been in the room for four hours and would actually die if Camp Counselor Jerry told me to lift or pull or stretch anything else. I couldn’t tell what I hated more: this stupid class, the zombie breathers who seemed to be enjoying themselves, or the sound of Robot Jerry’s voice.

Mercifully, the class ended. The hot yoga robot handed out cool towels, told us we could stay in the room as long as we liked, and thanked us for coming. He made a small bow before his closing line: “The light inside of me recognizes the light inside of you.”

Well, guess what, Camp Counselor Jerry? My light DOES NOT acknowledge your light. In fact, my light is pretty ticked at your light right now.

I grabbed my stuff, dumped my $6 sweat trap in the basket, marched right past the rack of $45 yoga pants, and left the hot yoga world in the rearview mirror of my life. Thanks for the memories, guys, but I don’t believe that’s for me. My toxins and I will take our business elsewhere.

 

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I Never Laughed at 24

I Never Laughed at 24

A very specific memory has been running through my mind recently. It was a conversation I had in high school, somewhere near sixteen. The whole thing is a little frayed, but the edges start to crystallize around a certain point when the age of twenty-three came up in a conversation about the future.

I raised my eyebrows and laughed uproariously.

“I’m never going to be twenty-three!” I howled.

The thought was absurd. Though it was only a seven-year stretch from where I sat, it seemed like an unimaginable eternity, impossible to cross.

Somewhere in the same time frame, I made a detailed plan for my life. I was sixteen for crying out loud; it was about time I sorted that out.

I would study creative writing for four years at a great university, graduate, and move into an apartment in a town square somewhere—preferably a spot above a local bookstore—and sit at a desk by a window as sunlight peers through the maple leaves hoping for a glimpse of the novel beneath my pen.

My dreams shifted at different ages. Plans for the future looked different at nineteen and had been altered again by the time I arrived at twenty-one. Somewhere along the way, I had surrendered to the idea that I would turn twenty-three, but even in my grandest dreams, all ambitions halted there.

I’ve been thinking about these wispy memories lately. They play through my mind, and again I laugh.

I smile at my sixteen-year-old self, and look teasingly at her dreams all laid out neatly and in perfect order. I smirk a little at her unquenchable belief that her wildest ambitions were as good as it could possibly get.

Silly girl. You weren’t even close.

Every dream I had then seems so small and puny when I think of what the Lord has done. At every turn, at every change, I’ve stamped my foot and pouted, begging for my ideal to be returned. But I kept following, and around every corner, I have been blinded by the sheer enormity and extravagance of what He had planned for me instead.

Today is my first day of twenty-four, an age I never envisioned or laughed at. It’s the first day on the other side of my sixteen-year-old dreams.

It is also the first birthday in fourteen years that did not dawn beneath Alabama sunshine. It is the first birthday in twenty-four years that did not start at home with my family. Suddenly, growing up doesn’t seem so absurd.

There have been moments recently when I’ve wanted to go back and kick that silly sixteen-year-old me for not planning further out.

But there have been other moments when I’ve had some things to say to her. Things that I imagine my future self will want to tell me, too.

Your most extravagantly imagined plans aren’t even close to the adventure unfolding.

The shadows are not as dark as you think they are.

Just because you feel alone, does not mean you are alone. You aren’t.

The Lord hears every prayer, even the ones you’re too afraid to write, speak, or think. He knows. He isn’t ignoring you. He hasn’t forgotten you. He sees and He understands.

Don’t be so afraid. Don’t step so timidly.

Be brave. Be bold.

Pay attention. Observe. See. There are stories happening in lightning speed around you. Let them wash over you, sink into you, pour out of your fingertips.

Write.

Stop collapsing in the face of a really terrible first draft. If you can’t fight through, you’ll never make it to a relatively okay second draft or a moderately decent third draft.

Life is a process; stop trying to skip steps.

Don’t spend all your time and energy looking for ways to tiptoe around failure. Face it as an inevitable foe.

And when you fail, know when the battle begins. The war won’t start while you’re failing. It’ll happen on your knees, when you’re afraid to stand back up. It’ll happen when you no longer trust the legs beneath you to hold you up. It’ll happen when you drop your head in defeat. Come prepared for this moment. Bring your sword, lift your chin, and face the lies of defeat with courage and purpose. Don’t waste the fight. Try again.

Perfection is a ruthless prison guard who delights in failed inspections. Don’t believe her when she tells you how great everyone else is doing. When she says you’re the only one who doesn’t measure up–you’re the only one feeling lost. She’s baiting you. Don’t let her hold you captive.

When you’re right and you wish you weren’t, don’t allow your validated instinct to sow seeds of cynicism. Instincts were meant to protect, but if you let them, they’ll turn you to stone.

Relish the moments when you feel the smallest. You’re too prone to view yourself as the center of every lens. In the rare moments when you glimpse a vision of a world bigger than you, breathe it in. Feel very small and very relieved that you are not the center of any universe.

Take those leaps of faith, even when you think you can’t. Even when you tremble at the thought. Even when you can’t see past where your foot will land, step forward anyway.

Be brave, and step forward anyway.

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A Thumb That Isn’t Green Yet

A Thumb That Isn’t Green Yet

When I moved into my apartment a several months ago, I felt an overwhelming surge of domesticity. I wanted to cook things and hang things and grow things. On my first free Saturday after settling in, I took a drive exploring the surrounding area and stopped at a roadside floral shop.

Along the corner of a crowded street, baskets full of flowers stood neatly in rows, like a little army whose sole job was to drive out all the ugliness in the world and replace it with new, springtime beauty. Boxes of individual plants stood resolutely on and under tables. More baskets spilling over with full blooms hung on displays that were built specifically for showing off.

I hadn’t browsed very long before a middle-aged woman approached and asked if I needed any help. It was pretty obvious that I did. She wore an apron that was streaked with dirt and her frizzy blonde hair was trying its hardest to escape from the precarious pile on her head.

I admitted to my inexperience with growing things and asked what she would recommend to one whose thumb had yet to change colors. She pointed out a few options and assured me that the hanging baskets I was eyeing would basically take care of themselves.

That sold me. For my sake and the sake of the plant, I knew I would need something that required very little responsibility.

I hung my prize-winning baskets on their hooks as soon as I got home and sat on my little patio enjoying their loveliness.

But I wasn’t very good at perpetuating the experience. Watering them was an afterthought that mostly came after they were nearly dead.

My roommate took them from their perches, set them at the edge of the patio and watered them far more faithfully than I did.

I would forget consistently or put off filling up the pail because I just “didn’t have the time” or was too lazy to get up and do it. I’d shrug off another day without water and wait instead for the rain to come and restore them. I periodically pulled the dead pieces from the ones that still lived, hoping that by removing the old, I would make room for new shoots to spring up.

But here’s what I learned as a plant owner: You can’t depend on someone else to water your plants and removing dead pieces doesn’t make new life grow. As long as I continue to forget to give their thirsty roots water, nothing new will spring up. I’ll just be left with a basket full of dirt and a plant that used to live.

Pulling away the dead limbs, pruning back sick leaves, and allowing dead blossoms to fall are all necessary and helpful things, but without water to nourish, replenish, and heal, I’m just tossing out symptoms of parched roots that will continue to die. I can’t just wait for seasons of rain. I have to fill up my pail morning after morning and give the poor things a drink. They have to have the water to grow.

Just like we do.

Double Grace Photography
Double Grace Photography

We can often get caught in the dangerous position of depending on someone else to water us spiritually: our pastors, Sunday School teachers, mentors, friends, or family members. Though those folks do often provide a refreshing bout of rain through their encouragement or discipling, they were never meant to bear the burden of keeping us alive spiritually. That’s not their job.

In the same way, it’s not your job either. If you were “dead in your trespasses,” unable to stir yourself from the cold grave of sin, chances are you probably won’t be that successful at keeping yourself alive either. That’s the job of the Holy Spirit—to sustain and nourish you through the Word of God.

Maybe it’s just me, but I find myself far too often trying to pull off the dead pieces of my life with legalistic hands, rather than looking to the compassionate Gardener who desires to prune AND to grow.

I haven’t been doing this long–trying to make things grow. And to be honest, I’m not very good at it. But one thing I have noticed is that every day is different. Some mornings are cooler than others. Some afternoons are soggy and others are oppressively dry. But regardless of temperature or season, the plant never stops needing water. Daily. Regularly. In plentiful gulps.

And even when they look dead, I keep watering them.

Because one cool morning, when I step out on my patio expecting to see a dead plant, I might just see instead a brave little bloom with its pale yellow face turned boldly toward the sun, rising from the wilted vines, declaring to all who pass that it isn’t dead at all. Despite its appearance or surrounding circumstances, it is very much alive.

 

“The [Holy] Spirit and the bride (the church, the true Christians) say, Come! And let him who is listening say, Come! And let everyone come who is thirsty [who is painfully conscious of his need of those things by which the soul is refreshed, supported, and strengthened]; and whoever [earnestly] desires to do it, let him come, take, appropriate, and drink the water of Life without cost.”

—Revelation 22:17 (Amplified)

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Adventures at the Lawrenceburg Fair

Adventures at the Lawrenceburg Fair

Fall is here, bursting through our doors with over-enthusiastic promises of cooler weather, pumpkin-flavored everything, and a glorious vanishing of the mosquito population.

Though, in Northwest Alabama, the weather is never as crisp as it should be, thus leaving a few lingering summer fiends behind. And making a gourd into a dessert is never quite as thrilling as I remember it. But, even so, I am grateful fall has arrived.

One of my favorite gifts fall brings along is the fair. You know, the excessive number of bright lights and carnival workers calling out for you to stop and play their games. And the clanging, metal contraptions meant to sling you around in the most terrifying and exhilarating fashion.

And the smells. Oh, the smells. The caramel, the kettle corn, the animals in the stables nearby, the fresh scent of mud and grass twisting together beneath hoofs and boots.

I went to the Lawrenceburg fair a few weeks ago with some friends of mine. When they invited me to tag along, I was so excited. I’d never been to the Lawrenceburg fair before, but had always heard stories of its superiority to the Florence production. It had become a sort of legend in my mind.

And I must admit, it lived up to its reputation. The Lawrenceburg fair was indeed a marvel.

Though most fairs have some sort of animal display, I had never seen one as large as this one. There were sheep and cows and horses and rabbits and goats, and I wanted to stop and pet every one. Talk to every one. And my kind and patient friends sweetly indulged me.

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As we walked toward the stables, I caught a glimpse of two men standing in the doorway, heads bent over something curious held by the man on the right. The back of the man on the left was obscuring my view, but I was determined to see what was so interesting. As I stepped around, the man on the right caught my eye and quickly tucked his prize back into his jacket pocket. But not before I saw a flash of squirming fur.

So, naturally, I had to ask.

“What’s in your pocket?”

The guy looked back at me with no expression of response and a tinge of suspicion in his eye, which to be honest, I found kind of ironic. I mean he’s the one who is carrying a tiny animal in his windbreaker. I just want to know what it is.

I realized he was trying to make me believe he had nothing to hide. That his jacket was just naturally a little squirmy. And I guess that should’ve been a warning sign, an indicator that this man might not be sitting squarely on his own rocker. But still I pressed.

“C’mon, man. I just saw you put that thing in your pocket. I know you’ve got something in there. What is it?”

Another moment of him staring at me, no response, just carefully considering his options. My friends stood behind me, trying to suppress snorts of laughter, glancing back and forth to each other in confusion.

Finally, realizing I wasn’t stupid enough to believe he had nothing to show, he pulled out his treasure to show us. As his left hand emerged, a trembling squirrel came with it, tucked firmly in the guy’s fist.

A squirrel. Garden-variety yard rodent. Immediately, a dozen questions filled my brain.

Does he carry it with him everywhere? Was it captured for this specific occasion, or had it been transformed into a kind of domestic pet? How did he come to acquire this little creature? Did he chase it down? (That image I found comical considering his age and build.) I had to know.

So, naturally, I asked.

Still I got no real response. I gave up with my questions, content with just ‘oohing’ and ‘ahhing’ over the tiny thing. I figured his squirrel, his business. As my friends and I leaned in to look closer at the shaking captive, the man spoke.

“You can pet him for a dollar,” he said in a low voice, his eyebrows lifted, seeming to suggest that he was offering us a real deal.

Unfortunately for him, we were all pretty uninterested in petting his contraband rodent.

It turns out that characters aren’t always fictional. Some are as real as the squirrels in their pockets and are oftentimes far more interesting than any invented personality.

 

**P.s. Stay tuned for Adventures at the Lawrenceburg Fair: Part 2 . Apparently, the fair’s got more to say.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Some Things to Celebrate

Some Things to Celebrate

Hold on to your hats, ladies and gents, because I am posting a blog for the third consecutive week. This is big news, people. To be perfectly honest, I am patting myself on the back just the tiniest bit. I feel like this should be celebrated considering that, before these last few posts, my most recent blog was from May.

While we’re having a party about my short-lived consistency, here are a few other things I think should be celebrated:

  1. This fall weather, though. It feels like the world just let out a breath it’s been holding in all summer, don’t you think? I love it. There is now a need for me to wear fuzzy socks at night, and you won’t hear me complaining about that.
  2. The Woodpecker Café. If you haven’t made it to this new breakfast and lunch spot on Court Street, you are missing a good thing. I’m not even a little embarrassed to tell you that I have been there twice this week. The food and coffee are fresh and delicious, and the customer service is ON POINT.
  3. Miss America’s hair. Y’all. HAIR GOALS, RIGHT THERE. Miss Georgia was talented and brilliant for sure, but that hair is what carried her through. Not even Brett Eldredge’s stupid question was enough to stop that kind of volume. (P.S. who invited him?)
  4. Kate Morton’s The House at Riverton. Last summer, the very kind owner of Ms. B’s Used Books & CD’s in Hendersonville, TN, introduced me to Kate Morton’s The Forgotten Garden. I loved it so much, that I recently picked up another of Morton’s books, The House at Riverton. Brilliant. Let me just say, if you like Downton Abbey, you will like this book. (If you don’t like Downton Abbey, you’re wrong.)
  5. Salted Caramel Latte Doughnut from Krispie Kreme. Let me tell you, these are good days to be a fan of the salted caramel. Pumpkin spice gets all the attention, but this little salty-sweet flavor is really the best fall taste. And in doughnut form? Why, yes, please. Don’t mind if I do.
  6. It’s Friday. Hey, guess what. You made it to Friday. Go buy yourself a doughnut.

**P.S. Here’s a tune by Us The Duo I’m obsessed with these days. I’ve learned from experience that it’s a good dancing song, and dancing is really the perfect way to celebrate Fridays.

 

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