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Rememory Friday 2

December 12, 2008

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One Sunday morning during church, we were sitting single file in our church row and singing Amazing Grace along with the rest of the congregation. Mom must have been in a funny mood, because when we reached the line, “That saved a wretch like me,” she began a tradition that has held true to this day. She caught our eye, and changed the lyrics to “That saved a wretch like yoooooouuuuuu” while pointing down the aisle at us. We about cracked up, and now we cannot sing that hymn together without pointing discreetly at the person next to us during that line.

I tried it with a friend once, and it didn’t go over so well.

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Speaking of hymns, another tradition of which I am not so fond is for Ben and my cousin Adam, during the hymn The Solid Rock, to sing nothing but the phrase “sinking sand” during the chorus. So for them, the chorus goes silence silence silence silence SINKING SAND! silence silence SINKING SAND!

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Being homeschoolers, we of course took field trips to colonial villages more than once during our schooling. Another obvious element of homeschooling involves reading all of the Little House on the Prairie books as a family. Combine these two activities, and what do you get? A group of children a) who are not the least bit disturbed by actually watching a pig be butchered before their eyes at the colonial village and b) who have the presence of mind to request that the butcher give them the pig’s bladder so they can test Laura Ingalls Wilder’s story about blowing that piece of anatomy into a balloon and using it as a toy.

It did not take us long to realize that it is very hard to test this theory on a pig bladder that has been kept in a brown paper bag all day while we learned how candles were made and wool was carded back in the olden days.

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My cousins, Aaron and Adam, are separated by six years, have some great stories about growing up together. Probably my favorite is to hear Aaron tell of how he used to give Adam one of those padded whiffle ball bats and just let Adam go to town beating him with it. Being much bigger, Aaron hardly felt Adam’s blows. Aaron would then snatch the bat from Adam unexpectedly and sweep Adam’s legs straight out from under him. And now we do not have to wonder why Adam is the most competitive person any of us knows.

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I absolutely love hearing my inlaws tell stories of John’s growing up years. He and his brother Ben have incredibly distinct personalities, and the stories are inevitably great. However, even great stories are made better by photos, right? This one is a classic

Trick or treat!

Trick or treat!

Ben is in the blue clown costume, and John is in the red one. I suspect that Ben had been sampling the candy prior to having this picture taken. For someone who really cannot stand clowns, I adore this photo.

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One of the movies we watched a lot of when we were young was Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey. It really was a fantastic movie, with three animals teaming up to accomplish a difficult task and incorporating humorous dialogue throughout. I do not think our mom realized how much of an effect the movie had on us until she took us with her to the vet’s office to give our cat a checkup. While the doctor examined Tina (yes, that was my cat’s name), Ben and I kept a running commentary going, speaking for Tina in first person. “Oh no, not a needle! I hate needles. Get away, you big mean doctor man!” I am pretty sure that Dr. Gough had never been exposed to this kind of behavior before; he was rather at a loss. Embarrassed, Mom mumbled something about “too much Homeward Bound” and ushered us out of there as quickly as possible.

We were a little confused, to say the least – didn’t everyone speak for their animals?

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When watching Woody Woodpecker or Sesame Street, the practice in our household was not to cuddle up on the couch or stretch out on the floor with a pillow. No, nothing but sitting underneath a TV tray for us. On the nights that our parents allowed us to eat dinner using a TV tray, it was especially convenient. After finishing the meal, all that was necessary was for us to slip down underneath the tray for the rest of the program. Don’t ask me why we did this – it made sense at the time.

Inspired by Jennifer.

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One comment

  1. Haha … that story about your mother changing the words to Amazing Grace is awesome.

    We have a couple similar stories in my family.

    One time, the words to “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” were misprinted in the church bulletin and read “tidings of cornfort and joy.” Yes, we all sang it that way.

    Another time, we had a discussion on the way to church about that scene from “10 Things I Hate About You” where the girls say “I know you can be overwhelmed and underwhelmed, but can you ever just be whelmed?”
    The church service (one we were visiting while hunting for a new church) was very serious. We’d stumbled into the service where the senior pastor was breaking the news that one of their other pastors had been having an affair with another church member. Most of the congregation spent the service in tears.
    The service closed with “The Solid Rock,” of course. And, upon realizing that “his hope, his covenant, his blood support me in the WHELMING flood,” my brother burst out laughing … not exactly appropriate under the circumstances.



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