Saturday, December 3, 2016

Frances (Missed Calls)

Today, a funny story to celebrate the distance (and we mean actual physical distance!) that a true friend will go. We are so happy to have you as our friend, Frances. We've ALL got your back - whether your phone is on mute, vibrate or set to ring...

Frances Bryce
Missed Calls

I heard a banging which I thought perhaps came from the restaurant downstairs, when the noise level reached a very high pitch. This banging was obviously from my door downstairs.

I yelled, “I’m coming!” even though I could not imagine why anyone would be at my door at 10:30 AM. The television was on as sleep had ruled the evening.

Hurrying down the stairs, two policemen and a neighbor were at the door. A dear friend had called my closest friend when she had failed to get me. She in turn had called the police. I was embarrassed that they were there, my apologies were one with assuring me that no apology was necessary and they were glad that I was OK!

When I attend church, I put my phone on vibrate and if I forget to change the setting and don’t have my cell phone on me or near me. I have no indication that a call had been made to me unless I check my phone late in the evening, which I had not done because I fell asleep.

I called my friend to let her know that I was OK, leaving a message on her landline and then hoping she had not left home and then on her cell phone hoping if she was on her way to my place to abort the trip.

As luck would have it, she did not get the cellphone message and showed up at my place. I felt awful that she had driven from Mt. Airy to Center City to see if I was OK. Her only concern was that I was fine.

We have been friends since we were in college. There are things money can’t buy  - a true friendship rates number one with me.

I will try to reset my phone after putting it on mute or vibrate.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Joan (A Song of Love)

Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving with people you love! And now, a story to remind us how truly beautiful family can be. And a call to listen to "Bridge Over Troubled Waters" by Joan :) Ready? HERE's a link I found for your listening pleasure! (Yes, it's playing on my laptop as I write you this blog post now, and yes my one-and-a-half-year-old son is nodding his head to it, deep in thought!)

Joan Bunting
A Song of Love

This past Friday (10-21-16) I had the most beautiful experience ever. My youngest daughter, Teresa, came to visit me.

We talked, laughed, and ate French fries and hamburgers. She paid for the meal and she even through in a slice of cheesecake for me.

Out of the clear blue sky, she said, “Mom, I dedicate this song to you and I mean every word of it.”

She had sung a song on her phone which was always one of my favorites, “Bridge Over Troubled Waters.”

I’ve always liked that song very much, but that was the very first time I truly listened to every word.

You see, when my children were growing up (I have six, two boys and four girls) they witnessed me being abused by their father whenever he got drunk.

When I listened to the words of that song and really understood what she was saying to me through this song, it touched my heart.

I never learned all of the words to this song but as I listened to all of the words, each word I felt the love of my daughter that she feels for me.

Teresa is the youngest of my six children and she was also the one which felt it in her heart two years ago this December the 6th to honor me.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying my other children don’t have the same love for me, because I know what they love me, but being individuals, they show their love in may other ways.

Since last Friday when I go to bed at night and when I woke up in the morning and all through the day, I find myself singing the few words that I know.

Have you ever had a song that just wouldn’t leave? I did many times and hated it, but this particular song, I don’t want it to leave me.  It brings tears to my eyes to know how much someone loves me.

If ever you have the chance to listen to “Bridge Over Troubled Waters,” do it.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Arlin (Life)

Between the last blog post and this one, something big took place - the end of a messy presidential elections season that has left behind messy feelings of negativity across the country. To me, there's one and only one solution: love. This story by Mr. Arlin reminds us to rediscover that in our own families. Here in our Best Day family, we have that, and I am so grateful. More than ever, let's hold onto that.
Arlin Gordon

I’d like to talk about life because life is so interesting. I grew up in a family of 11 children. I was raised by my mother, father, and grandfather. One thing that was interesting about Grandpa was that he always checked our homework. He’d say, “This is right, this is not right.” It wasn’t till he has passed and we were talking years later that somebody said, “Grandpa couldn’t read”. And I said “What? Say that again?” But you know, it didn’t matter that he couldn’t read. He was always able to make us do our homework.

I grew up in a fun-loving and caring family. I enjoyed meal times because we talked with one another. We didn’t have a lot of money but we had love. And that’s something I’d like to see come back to the American family. 

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Hattie (About Grandmom)

Alright! To kick off our new tradition of showing our older buds' handwritings with their stories, here's a story that has always meant a lot to me, not just because of what Hattie wrote, but because of what happened right after our writing session was over. I was cleaning up the papers in the quiet room. In walked Hattie. Click HERE to find out what she said. This conversation took place October 15, 2009, just the fourth time of our group has ever met. Already, the sense of trust in our group was inexplicably, magically deep.
October 15, 2009
Hattie Lee Ellerbe
About Grandmom

On Friday afternoon it was time for Mr. Ferguson to come to our house. He was our music teacher. For $2.50 a week, per household, he taught all of us.

Grandmom was determined to have us all learn to play the piano. Growing up we always had a piano in our house. I never really learned to play but three of my sisters did.

Grandmom was so proud of us; she had us playing at church and anytime we had company at home. I am the middle child of five sisters. I admit, I was different. Grandmom wanted us all to be little ladies. I was a "Tom Boy" and was always having accidents by falling down or hurting myself. I was always on punishment.

Everyone, including myself, thought Grandmom "picked on me" and whipped me the most.

We had sufficient clothing and Grandmom worked very hard as a factory worker to see that we never went to bed hungry. She stressed education and religion. I never missed a day of school in 12 years.

It wasn't until I became a grown-up that Grandmom and I became close.

In later years, November 26, 1974 approximately 8pm, Grandmom died in my arms, with a smile on her face as I tearfully whispered - I love you.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Raw. Original. Handwritten.

Today, I shared another string of enlightening group texts with our super facilitators of this group. Cassie is a rockstar for starting the convo (Cassie is a very cool girl with a band so it's only an appropriate analogy!!) She said, "I think seeing the actual paper with the older adult's handwriting is something our readers would like to see. Raw and original, you know? Everyone's handwriting says so much about them." So that got me thinking, maybe I will go back through our boxes of original handwritings that we have protected for years like gold, and start posting some here. Scanned version. Typed version. Side by side. I am pretty excited about this. I hope you are too.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Frances (Decisions, Decisions)

Have you ever felt like sometimes you stumble across a story and it’s the exact thing you need to hear? Frances’ story is advice that I am filing under “best advice I have ever heard.” I need this story in my back pocket, so I can come back to it over and over again. Figure out which part of your life needs changing. Make a decision to get on the right course. Go for it. I love that. Next time that feeling for change hits me in my gut, you know what story I will be rereading. Thanks, Frances!

Frances Bryce
Decisions, Decisions

My daughter and I had a conversation recently about her career path that has gotten altered. She is now working in a company that she does not like, after being there for the last year. I reminded her that unless she actually pursues another path, the conversation could be repeated at this time a year from now. She agreed.

Often we follow a path that does not lead to the change we desire and let the clock keep ticking, keeps us in the same place. We decide which course our lives will take either by doing something or not.  Course of action is being taken.