Work Love Sing and Reviving a Hydrangea

Humid August air pressed down, causing the night to be dense and sticky. Darkness seemed to hang like a heavy curtain surrounding us in a dark cloak.

 Above, a canopy of brilliant stars spilled along the milky way and glittered like billions of finely cut diamonds across the black velvet sky..

Sleeping soundly on soft pallets of quilts that Mother had made for our family

August 1966, I was a wee little tiny lass with curly golden hair, chubby cheeks and dark brown eyes.

 I didn’t know it then but the transitions of that summer that brought Mother and Daddy deep into the hills of Northwest Arkansas, dug roots deeply into my heart and soul.  Those heart roots were as strong and powerful as the hard wood roots of the sprawling oak tree under which our family slept that night.

Being the youngest child in our family,

a tiny wee lass with golden curls and chubby cheeks and dark brown eyes,

I didn’t realize the adventures of the Easley family,

during the summer of 1966

were birthed in the face of difficult transitions.

Finding a house to rent in a community that we called Georgia Ridge,

our family slept on the lawn of the house at night, until we had the house cleaned and fixed so  we could move in.

The crashing and scraping in the middle of the night that startled us awake under the protection of the sprawling branches of the mighty oak, was actually caused by a house being moved down the road in the middle of the night…probably to avoid daytime traffic.

As the roof of the house crashed into the  canopy of tree branches that overhung the dusty dirt country road,  and I startled awake, my memories flickered on and the experiences of my life began to grow those deep heart and soul roots.

Mother and Daddy may have felt battered and abused by hard times in spite of their diligence and consistent work.  Or  they may have felt themselves hanging along that fine line  between hope and despair

But what I saw as a wee tiny lass, with curly golden hair and dark brown eyes,

were two

standing as one

facing the world


working like they didn’t need the money

loving like they’d never been hurt

singing…oh yes… singing

like no one was listening


dancing like no one was watching


not the dancing part…

I never saw them dance…

but they did hug and kiss a lot.

And those roots,

roots of life

dug way down deep,

deep in the soil of my wee tiny soft little heart…

the heart of this

curly-haired, chubby cheek, dark brown eyed girl.

And this summer,

all these years later,

August 2016

I hope



just like they taught me.


How to revive a wilted hydrangea:

Just in case you need to revive a wilted hydrangea, cut the stem as close to the bloom as possible and set the bloom into a cup of fresh water. If the bloom is going to perk up and revive, it will do so in about 3 hours. When a bride brings me her bouquet to preserve and the hydrangeas have begun to wilt, more that half of the time, I can cut them close to the bloom and get them to revive.  Maybe you needed to know that! And it is a whole lot of fun to watch the flowers revive.

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