the voice

Did you have me pegged as a Matt McAndrew fan?

matt
photos courtesy nbc.com

 

I know, I know….I’m way outside the expected demographic of this show

Who do you like? Damien?

damien

Or are you a fan of the 3-namers: Craig Wayne Boyd and Taylor John Williams?

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taylorEver notice the person with the best voice (technically) never wins these competitions?

As an audience member or a potential itune downloader, with what are we connecting?

Here’s my theory. I think we like and appreciate singers who aren’t technically perfect. We connect with the person comfortable in his own skin. A person who embraces his own imperfections/quirks and bravely bares them for the world to see.

A few seasons ago, I adored the quirky Nicholas David.

The Voice - Season 3

A bearded white guy singing soul music? Nicholas has a nice voice, but it was his interesting interpretation and 100% commitment to his singing that I admired. I’d buy a ticket to his concert. Any chance he’ll come from Minnesota to West Texas??

I’ve mentioned before that I sing on Monday mornings with a group of retired singers who visit retirement/nursing homes. Last Monday, several of our group sang Christmas solos for residents at the local veteran’s nursing home. If you’re not an aging vocalist, you might not fully appreciate how difficult it is to get the rusty pipes warmed up and ready to sing at 9 am.

Scott wowing the crowd with a beautiful solo.

 

singingstars 005aAs the holiday serenades washed over me, I was struck by the interestingly rich quality and warmth of the voices. These were tones of character-voices bespeaking a history. I imagined the laryngeal tapestry required to produce such sounds:  a bride resolutely saying ‘I do’ at the alter, a mom gently singing lullabies to her baby or perhaps vocalizing (loudly!) for her toddler to avoid an unsafe street, a young man calling signals for his team mates in a football game, an officer barking orders at soldiers in his charge, the cries and prayers uttered at the graveside of loved ones. These disparate elements are woven together producing a distinctly unique, imperfectly-golden sound. Perhaps these voices aren’t as nimble flitting up and down a scale as they once were, but they are the grace notes of a full life.

I guess we’ll keep squawking as long as a chair turns.

Imperfections? I’ve got ’em. Funny….they might just be my biggest strength. I’m unfurling the freak flag and running it up the pole. There’s room for your flag, too!

Hope you have a chance to add your voice to the wonder of the unfolding Christmas story.

Fa-la-la-la-laaaah-la-la-la-loooove to all.

 

the right diet

Intended to share with you how I did ‘it’. Our church was involved with The Daniel Plan during the season of Lent and I participated along with many other church members. I gave up sugar and white flour for the season of remembrance. Went on a low-carb eating plan and continued with my usual exercise routine: spinning, yoga, and some weight training. Lost a little weight, my clothes fit better and I feel good, but writing about it now feels shallow. Blah, blah, meh.

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This female cardinal has nothing whatsoever to do with this post. She’s been pecking at my windows for three weeks. I love her.

Let’s face it. I don’t have a big problem with diet and exercise. I’m weird…I LIKE exercise. I can thank my parents and other ancestors for a basically slim build and a built-in ‘off’ switch in my appetite. I’m lucky, grateful and without easy answers. Other areas of my life? Things aren’t always as easy.

One of my fittest friends at my gym (a doctor in his early forties) recently suffered a heart attack. This guy is skinny and he enthusiastically exercises every day. He’s obviously very strict with himself and with his diet. Wham.…two stints required. What the ?!

My minister mentions his love for chocolate-covered doughnuts quite regularly. He’s a big guy and he’s an avid long-distance cyclist. Talks about competing in the ‘Clydesdale’ division in bike races. Ride on, Pastor Burt!

Your body is a temple, because the spirit of God lives in you. If I want to see God, experience God-I can take a look at you and behold His majestic creation. You’re the priceless lost coin, you’re the sheep He’s calling home, and you’re a precious recipe of gold, frankincense and myrrh carefully folded together.

If you’re thin and look fantastic, hallelujah. If you’ve got some ‘middle aged spread’, you’ve surely earned it. If you like chocolate doughnuts, I hope you savor every last cocoa-morsel with the taste buds God gave you. If you are like the Texan and ice cream is your passion, thank God for the sweet, creamy delight in each chilly spoonful.

It’s altogether easy and familiar for me to rely on rigid thinking. Do ‘x’ and ‘y’ and I’ll get z!   I can quickly fall back into feeling like that lost child of alcoholic parents. I learned being good doesn’t stop your parents from drinking.

Today I’d tell that confused child, ‘you’re wonderful’, ‘you’re trying and doing the best you can’ and ‘you are incredibly strong’.

graham

My wish for you right now….whether you are fat or thin, healthy or unhealthy, sinner or saint, gay or straight, black, white, red, yellow or any other combination of colors, young or old….

Feel God’s embrace right where you are. He’s trying to tell you you’re pretty cool. Believe it.

Grace-for-the-week-ahead love to all.

 

nose knows

sea-see

through-threw

hair-hare

ice cream-I scream

I’m not talking about homophones today. I’m posting about a certain hound dog who hasn’t appeared on the blog in a blew…..blue moon.

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Roxy Doxy-Grand Canyon earnestness in a tater-tot canine.

While working in the yard, she’s my #1 assistant. Always on duty. Working to keep me safe. To serve and protect.

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The proboscis doesn’t miss a cent….I mean, scent.
What neighborhood kitty has been padding over the lava rocks?
What neighborhood kitty has been padding over the lava rocks?
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Has the crafty fox been on the stares…excuse….stairs?
Could there be a snake under the patio?
Could there be a snake under the patio?
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Is the smelly tennis ball in the pond? Goin’ in after it!
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Smellin’ a squirrel. Did he flea up the tree?

Sometimes a wafting fragrance causes the earnest little wiener to freeze in her dog tracks.

new lens 039aHonestly, some nature aromas make her stand as still as a statue!!

003aYou know the latest scent she’s been savoring?

It’s totally new.

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The precious grand-daughter!! Roxy Doxy licks her on the ear. We can’t resist kissing her face.

The Texan and I are adoring the girly smells, as well.

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The Texan demonstrating to baby girl how relaxing the hammock can be.

Her busy, busy big brother learns a new skill every day.

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G playing ball with the Texan.

Having fun. Feeling blessed and grateful.

Hope something you love causes you to freeze in your tracks in wonderment.

Pink love to all.