Raising Magnolias

Because it's never too late for happily ever after…

The Littlest of These

(Disclaimer: I was raised never to talk about money; either how much you make or how much something costs. My apologies  in advance for doing both).

Last week, dust and dirt and corn seeds flying all around like some sort of Nebraska farmland-tornado, I sat watching my favorite little leaguer. We were in the middle of a cornfield and I couldn’t help but think of that Robert Redford movie.

Or was it Kevin Costner? 


Coulter’s friend’s Dad (y’all remember him) shows up with his son to watch Coulter play. I texted a friend sitting two seats over before her imagination ran wild.

He is here for Coulter. (And he was).


She says, “I don’t know, (sing-songy voice) he’s pretty cute!”

“Oh yeah. He’s cute, but he’s way too poor for me.”

This is my second go-round. I’m not marrying  a poor teacher.

I’m not marrying anyone, actually.

And she looks at me and maybe we’re not quite yet close enough for her to know that I’m totally joking.

Only I’m not really joking.

I mean yes, of course I’m joking.

And her husband is a teacher.

And I’m a teacher. And being a teacher is a calling.

And I refuse to use the word poor, but with a currently salary of about $10, 000 a year, I’m pretty sure I qualify.

Or maybe it’s less. I don’t really know.

Anyway. My calling.

When my husband and I were first married, I followed.


To Minnesota. And just in case you’re wondering, that’s like next to Canada.

Wait. Actually, we weren’t married.

And I lived in a convent for a year. Literally.

In a convent.

I interviewed and was offered a job. On the first day of the job, I was told that I shouldn’t were red anymore.

Uhm, yeah.

And I wouldn’t of cared so much, but like red is one of my colors.

Right? I mean, it’s in the same family as pink.

And I’ve forgotten, but I’m thinking their colors were orange. And I knew that day it wouldn’t last.

Seriously. Do y’all know how bad I look in orange?


I loved my boss. I did not love my job.

8 to 5 is not really my thing.

Then we moved. I followed.


And I decided to build a teaching studio.

Because what I learned about myself  during that brief, “you can’t wear red” period, is that I’m not really a team player.

I’m a classical pianist.

A soloist.

I never marched in the band.

Or played team sports.

I did cheer for a season, but I was a terrible dancer (surprising, I know) and we had to dance to “Girl, I Want Your Body” (and I think you’re sexy). Like I could probably sing the whole song right this minute.

But I won’t. And it was. 


Ya know. Not good.

Not good at all.

And occasionally, I still have nightmares about that dance. And usually I forget to wear a shirt or something equally horrific. (In my dream. In real life I remember to wear clothes).

Anyway, not really a team-sport kind of person but I am good with people.

You know, so long as I’m in charge.

So long as I’m the soloist.

So long as I’m teaching.

And it’s all the same.

Teaching music.

Teaching fitness.

And I love what I’m doing and  I’m humbled and grateful and so full of joy for all the shut doors, and slammed doors and the just really, really icky doors that I’ve had to walk through and I see the Lord’s protection in all of the no’s but it occurs to me lately that missing from my little HALE YEAH empire are little ones.

10 years of twirling and playing and dancing and singing and I miss them.

 The littlest of these.

And since I’m still married I’m thinking it will be just a little while before I can have more babies.

Sorry, Mom. That was a joke. 

Pick yourself up.


Into the paper bag.

Whatever. Since I’m still married and almost 41, my opportunities for more babies have probably passed, but over the weekend the Lord placed into my hands chubby cheeks and giggly gurgles and we dug in the sand and we ate sand and we tried to drink the lake water.

And the next day I scooped up still more little ones and we twirled and we dunked and we escaped the dangers that lurked below.

Alligators in the club pool.

And on my heart all night long—

Were little ones. And music. And hello songs. And jumping and drumming and giggling and singing and—

And teaching.


So I asked.

And within about 30 seconds of asking, I was offered a place to teach.

Within about 30 seconds of putting a voice to my heart’s desires,

The Lord.



I’m so used to people saying no, that sometimes I just forget to ask.

I forget to anticipate.

A yes.

Which for some reason reminds me—-

Someone who likes to say no recently called me lazy.

Ok, it wasn’t just someone. It was someone’s attorney.

And you can call me a lot of things.

I’m unorganized and often store important documents in my Bible.

I’m emotional and have been known to cry and laugh at the same time.

(And for the record, being emotional is WAY different that being moody.)

I am so not moody.

And usually I would just leave it at that. I would leave you with emotional, unorganized duck trying to be a chick-girl, but not today—

Today you don’t get to call me lazy.

“Do not despise these small beginnings for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin.”

And I am working.

My beginnings are small, but today they grew.

And the way I see it, it’s time we bring in da music to Fremont.

(And I so wanted to say bring in da funk.)

But we all know I can’t pull off the f-word. Any of them.

Fremonters: Please help me recruit families! Family Music Time for newborns to age 5. Thursday evenings, 6:00-6:45 at Grace Church starting this Fall! Woot!

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2 thoughts on “The Littlest of These

  1. SUSIE Fangmeier on said:

    AWESOME!! Music has played a HUGE part in my life… Enjoy!!

  2. Kimberly on said:

    Yea God! Praise God! Woohoo!!

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