Monday, January 24, 2011

Bigma

My Bigma, Audie Nixon Muse
"so go down graceful...sleep with the angels....and wake up whole again" (bebo norman)
1/9/1909 - 1/18/2011

My Bigma

(from the service celebrating Bigma's beautiful life, 1/22/11)

Hi, I’m so proud to be Bigma’s great granddaughter, Kelly Muse (Woodward Sprinkle). I wanted to say a few words today because I’m so blessed by my Bigma and all that she has taught us…and I’m so proud of her.

As I sat down to try to put into words all that Bigma means to us, I realized that this is an impossible task.

How do you capture 102 years of an amazing life lived?

My Bigmama went to meet her Maker on Tuesday evening, but thankfully her story doesn’t end on Tuesday. Her 102 years will continue on. As she rejoices in heaven, we carry her love with us in our hearts.

And so today, we cherish and remember her sweet, gentle spirit, her faith in God, her love of life, her pureness of heart, and her goodness.

Today, we celebrate her love for her family—her daughter (my sweet & beautiful Grandma) and my Grandpa, her grandchildren (Roy, Tracy, Gail & Woody), her great grandchildren (Patrick, Jennifer, Katy and myself), her brothers, sisters and nieces and nephews and extended family.

We celebrate the love she had for her three great-great grandchildren who she completely adored—loved holding them, making them smile and laugh, making sure socks were on their feet! “Does that baby EVER cry?,” she always asked us—but that was Bigma—seeing the best in all of us.

We celebrate her friends and her Sunday School class.

We celebrate my Grandma’s friends, who always brightened Bigma’s day.

We celebrate her green thumb and beautiful gardens.

We celebrate her many talents, fierce independence and amazing strength, dignity and strong character.

We celebrate her beautiful soul and humble nature.

We celebrate her industrious abilities—her ability to fix and to do pretty much anything, including, as Jennifer reminded us the other night, pulling our teeth!
But, you see, that’s just the perfect example of Bigma, because not only would she be brave enough to pull our teeth, but then she would fix our little wounds, she would sew a little pillow just perfect for that tooth, and of course, she would make sure the tooth fairy came to visit.

The furniture she built and restored, the beautiful dresses and quilts she made, the hundreds of clothes she hemmed and fixed up for us, the letters she wrote.

We cherish all of these things.

But there’s one thing we cherish most of all: her faith.

In Psalm 145 it talks about the passing of faith from generation to generation.
3 Great is the LORD and most worthy of praise;
his greatness no one can fathom.
4 One generation commends your works to another;
they tell of your mighty acts.
13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
and your dominion endures through all generations.
Two Sundays ago, on her 102nd Birthday, as we were packing up to leave that day, Bigma said to me: “You know, my favorite thing is just watching how much you all love each other.”

Oh, my precious Bigma, don’t you know that we learned it from you? That this is the greatest legacy—the amazing love that you had for us that impacted our lives in ways impossible to describe. This is the greatest legacy, Bigma—your faith in God that you passed down from generation to generation.

It was so hard to watch Bigmama get sick over the past week. When I got home on Wednesday morning, my Natalie Muse asked me, “Is B’ma all better now?”
“Yes, she is completely healed—in heaven with Jesus, “ I was able to say with full confidence and faith. She is all better now.

So on behalf of my family, we thank you…we thank you for loving our Bigma…because don’t you know, she was a Bigma to so many of us!

May we wake each day that God gives us and live by her example—may we continue to love one another just as Christ loves us.

We’ll celebrate Bigma’s legacy of love today, and praise God that He has inherited a precious and beautiful servant into His Kingdom. We are immensely and immeasureably blessed by you, Bigma.

A dear friend wrote to me this week:
How God has blessed you and your family with a matriarch that has led you on a path that I am confident is so pleasing to Him. How gracious and loving He is that He has given your beloved Bigma the gift of years to nurture and love multiple generations. That He would see fit to have her welcome those precious great-great grandchildren into a family that honors Him and so deeply loves one another. These are difficult days but let us praise an omnipotent, loving and caring God for Bigma's 102 years with us. How comforting is it that He has Bigma's name written on the "palm of His hand?" Surely she is "the apple of His eye." Her hand and example are both far-reaching. You, my dear, are the very sweet fruit of Bigma's hopes, prayers and her very faith.

Each of us here today are the fruit of Bigma’s love and faith.

If we continue to love one another, this will make Bigma so proud.

As I close, I want you to know (my Bigmama) that you will always be with me, and with us. We will miss you so very much, every day.

In one of my favorite poems, EE Cummings writes:

I carry your heart with me (I carry it in
my heart) I am never without it (anywhere
I go you go, my dear…

So, my precious BIGMA, I carry your heart with me, I carry it in my heart.

Thank you.


Thursday, January 13, 2011

be still...

For most of the week this week, we were cooped up here in the good 'ole ATL due to the snow and ice storm. I enjoyed the time at home, yet slowly but surely, was going stir crazy. I didn't go beyond the confines of our neighborhood from Sunday until today, when I went back to work. I've never stayed at home for that long without going anywhere, I don't think. But I was ready to get out. I was ready to go to work. This week was kind of like the vacation that I didn't ask for.

And so, I had a little time to think.

I got an e-mail from a friend at work earlier in the week. "Sometimes it is good to just sit still, Kel." And how right she is. I needed to hear that--I needed to grasp the value of "being still" (psalm 46:10). This was my lesson this week.

Go, Go, Go. That's how things usually are for our family. We're on the go during the week, especially now that I've started my new schedule and I'm working evenings at the hospital while Dave is working days. We're on the go on holidays, because we're traveling back and forth from LaGrange to Atlanta. Dave refers to me as the hummingbird sometimes, because at night, I buzz around trying to straighten everything up...sometimes he tries to impose a cut-off time when I have to sit down on the couch!

I always feel like I have to entertain the kids. What can we do next? Where can we go next? Are they bored? But it's okay to just be still with them too. It's okay to just hang out, cuddle, and not do too much. It's okay to just take a walk and not have to say much. It's okay.

This week, I had a chance to cuddle a little more with my baby boy. I had a chance to sit with my husband in the evenings. I had a chance to take long walks with my Nat Nat in the beautiful snow. I had a chance to be thankful for my warm, safe house; for my healthy children; for my paycheck and my health insurance, my car and my nice, warm boots. I had a chance to be thankful for this life I live...

Watching the tragedy that unfolded in Arizona on Saturday completely broke my heart. It takes my breath away to realize how quickly life can be over. And then I run into blogs like this one. It brings me to my knees, and as I offer up a prayer for that sweet little life, my heart breathes gratitude to God for my many blessings.

My sweet Bigma is in the hospital tonight and so I pray for her. For peace and hope and healing for her.

Tonight, I must remember that it is good to be still, to just BE STILL. To quiet my heart. To listen and take in. To offer praise to the One who gives so much. To offer gratefulness to the One who makes this life worth living. Be still, Kel, enjoy being still.

Psalm 32: 6-8

6 Therefore let all the faithful pray to you
while you may be found;
surely the rising of the mighty waters
will not reach them.
7 You are my hiding place;
you will protect me from trouble
and surround me with songs of deliverance.

8 I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Sunday, January 9, 2011

one hundred and two...

my precious great grandmother turned one hundred and two today. ONE HUNDRED AND TWO. can you imagine living for 102 years?? she has seen so much during her lifetime, and has remained the same precious, loving, amazing woman. she is strong and kind. she has faith in God and belief in the power of family.
she told me today, "i love seeing how much you all love each other."
so when the years have gone by, what remains? what is important?
each other.
thank you, bigma, for teaching me so much about life, love, faith and family. we love you more than you'll ever know and we are so very thankful for you!

bigma and her great-great grandson (John John)





bigma, jenn jenn, and bigma's three great-great grandchildren









my cutie pies

video

i'm pretty sure he'll be getting her back one day...

4 months old




baby boy...please stop growing so fast. you are a precious, amazing little man who brings such joy to your mama's life. you are rolling over, laughing a lot, grabbing for toys, and bouncing about. you are a busybody and love watching what's going on around you...your sweet little sounds just make me smile...you smile all the time...you are really good at telling me exactly what you need. my favorite time of day is early in the morning when you are just talking and talking in your bed. you always wake up so happy! we love you sweet john...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

nat's birthday party












video

my big girl is three

trip to the pink pig for nat's birthday...12.28.10






precious natalie muse,
how can you possibly be three years old? i truly can't believe it. you are a beautiful, sweet, adventurous little soul who loves people. you've hung tough through the adjustment to having a baby brother. you love school and your friends. your best friend is most definitely ty ty. you love to sing and often tell me to stop singing with you, as you are the star my dear! you LOVE to wear jewelry and always want to wear my necklaces. you are so opinionated about what you want to wear, all the way down to your panties. you make me laugh ALL THE TIME. you know just how to get me tickled, and we'll just laugh and laugh. you want to do everything by yourself now, and are quite the independent little soul--this makes mama a little sad but so very proud of my big girl.
you call underwear, "bunderwear"--this tickles me to no end, and i just can't correct you yet because it is so cute.
you LOVE chewing gum and ask me for some about every thirty minutes.
you like to wear your barbie band-aids, so sometimes we pretend you have a boo-boo when you don't!
you love to watch max & ruby, frosty the snowman and angelina ballerina--it seems that you're possibly parting from the days of barney obsessions, and i must be honest, i won't miss him, my dear.
you are an absolutely incredible and precious blessing in our lives, little miss, and we love you more than you'll ever know! happy 3rd birthday!

christmas 2010