Saturday, September 21, 2013

By the Light of the Harvest Moon

Earlier in the week, I drove home from Katherine’s quite late; but with the way lit by the beautiful full harvest moon, I enjoyed the drive.  I was able to reflect on all the joy of company we have had so far this month.  It started with Gerry and Vickie’s visit the first weekend in September, which was especially fun because they brought their oldest grandson Aidan up with them.  He got to be bird boy when the men dove hunted, and  he caught a bass when he fished with Gma Vickie, who caught the biggest fish ever caught from our lake in grandson Sam’s opinion. To please Aidan, Vickie cooked it, and  I came home from Katherine’s to join the gang already at supper eating that large bass. Before the weekend was over, Aidan was allowed to drive the four-wheeler (with many cautions) and to drive the tractor with Gerald sitting in the buddy seat. 

One of the joys of having our youngest daughter Mary Ellen’s family move back to our community is that Mary Ellen is able to drop in and out frequently.  When I can, I try to do the same  on my way to or from town when I go the highway instead of the back country roads.  Mary Ellen brings yummy meat loaf from her freezer and delicious ribs slow cooked for hours in her oven, so she has cut my cook time, which is nice with so much time needed at Katherine’s house.  Sam and Brianna both had to come enjoy the Georgia family and to play with Aidan.  And Vickie brought her mother (Gma Shirley) over before they left on Labor Day.  Leslie came through later in the day for a brief visit but missed the Georgians.

We were also thrilled to have a visit from Bob and Sylvia Mountz, who were visiting in the area for a couple of days before heading to Champaign to meet a relative before catching their flight back to Phoenix.  We wished they could have visited longer because Sylvia and Gerald have so many shared memories from when her father, Ralph Fisher, was manager at the State Forrest Preserve (now called Trail of Tears State Park).  Mr. Fisher and Dad Glasco were great buddies, and Gerald and I took Dad down for a visit when the Ralph and Catherine still lived in their retirement village in Arkansas.  I loved visiting with Mrs. Fisher and seeing  the huge lovely photograph of their eight children as a focus  in the living room. The Fishers were strong advocates of education, and Gerald said they were a great influence in their rural community.  He had to show Sylvia and Bob what we laughingly call the Fisher file, with all the clippings and information about their talented family.  Ralph had written long letters to Gerald telling of the academic and other achievements of each child and grandchild.  Of course, they were given copies of those letters. During their too brief visit we fed them Flamm Orchard peaches, and Bob had to have some of Gerald’s tomatoes fresh from the garden.

Another day one of our closest neighbors, Mary Lea Kahlor Burnham dropped by to borrow some cages and had time to have a coke with me.  A neighbor visit is a real treat and much better than the brief phone calls we sometimes share.

Then the five Archibalds arrived at 4 a.m. on Friday before the weekend of their cousin Sarah’s Saturday wedding.  Bryan had been chosen on the Southern Illinois University Carbondale Century Football Team.  They got a minimum of sleep after that before starting their busy day, which included plans for the three boys to play in the lime pile, and ride all the farm vehicles with Gpa Gerald.  Sam was off school that day (teachers’ meeting I guess), so he got to be with us at lunch. Mary Ellen and Brian were in Waggoner closing on their house sale there, so they couldn’t join us.

Later that afternoon and more farm play, after baths they were off  meet up with Bryan’s mom who was staying in the cabins at Giant City and was all excited to be able to see her three grandsons while Bryan and Tara went to the banquet honoring the All Century Team.  They spent the night with Linda, and  woke to face the extra busy Saturday which included tailgating, being recognized at the football half time, and somehow getting every one dressed and back to Stonefort for Sarah’s  5 p.m. wedding!

In the meantime, Gerry and Vickie and Geri Ann had arrived Friday evening late, and we were able to visit before they took off the next morning for tailgating with Bryan’s family, who were here to celebrate Bryan’s honor.  Gerry and Vickie and Geri Ann were in and out changing clothes for the wedding, and much later were back to finally collapse  and report a great day and evening after the reception in Marion.  Gerry and Vickie had the three boys with them  and quickly settled them down since Bryan and Tara were staying to visit with his dad and stepmother, who were  in a motel in Marion.  

Sunday morning granddaughter Erin and her fiancĂ© Ted Schoblocher, who were here briefly from Dallas for the wedding, carried in a variety of  breakfast goodies.  Everyone chatted over coffee and reflected and laughed over all the fun at the wedding festivities the night before.  It was fun to hear about the little boys dancing. This breakfast visit was much too short, but Erin and Ted had to get back to Texas for work the next day. Later Tara and Bryan and his folks, Ron and Tonda, were out to see the farm.

By that time, I had gone on to Sunday School.  I am working with preschoolers again this year, and I knew it was important that baby Isaac have a familiar face to greet him.  I was rewarded by his coming into my arms without crying and later I had the privilege of giving him a bottle before he got down on the floor to play with his sister and Miss Kim. 

I did get home in time to see Ron and Tonda for the first time since Bryan and Tara’s wedding on New Year’s Eve 2005.  I had lunch in the oven for anyone who could stay, but everyone was anxious to get back to their far away homes, so Gerald and I had a quiet lunch and rest time before I left for my usual Sunday afternoon visit with Katherine. I took a lunch plate to her and stopped on the way to leave one for Trent, who was home taking care of Fifi, while Mary Ellen and Bryan had breathlessly gone from their house closing to their first Parents Weekend with Brianna down at Murray. That they were able to sell their rural home in only a couple of weeks after the first buyer had to regretfully back out was a miracle.  (Although I am sure that Mary Ellen’s knowledge as a realtor was a factor in the miracle.)
As I drove home beneath the beauty of the luminous yellow moon promising the coming appearance of the same yellow in autumn leaves, I knew I had much to rejoice over before harvest even began.  And now at the end of the week, it has.