Thursday, October 1, 2009

Mural Dedication and Veggie Bouquets

I attended the dedication for the mural in the City Office Building. It really was a great event. The artist, Julie Rogers, really put her heart and spirit into this painting. It was so uplifting to hear the stories about the painting and the models she used. You could tell there was a tremendous spirit from the other side assisting in the work.

The story of mom was really touching. Mom had a hard time wanting to be a model, but after several times of being asked, mom finally consented. It turned out to be a really great experience for her and for the artist. Julie said that mom just carried with her a spirit of love of
her heritage and love for this town that she needed to capture. Mom person is front and center in the mural which was really hard for her because she likes the "background." Julie also told of the day that mom came to be painted. She said that she felt an influx of people from the other side follow mom up the stairs. It was very touching to hear the story. Julie commented on how much those ancestors must love her to be such a strong presence when she arrived.

As Julie told about Grandpa, she recalled driving down the street and seeing him out plowing the field with his REALLY old plow. She knew there was something special about him, but she couldn't forget his grin. She realized how happy he was and how it showed on his face while working.

Something that really touched me was that she said that after she finished taking photos of Grandpa, he offered her a beautiful "bouquet" of radishes. She said she had been given bouquets of flowers before, but this was so beautiful to her.

I couldn't help but think about how ungrateful I have been. Here is someone who saw a bunch of radishes as a beautiful bouquet. I realized that I needed to be so much more grateful for the bouquets I have received in my life over the years. Not only have I received many beautiful bouquets of garden fruits and vegetables, but I have been given so many more sweet ones. I've
been given dandelion bouquets, rock bouquets, bug bouquets. I've been given bouquets of the spirit, such as someone cleaning for me or thanking me for dinner.

Just a couple of weeks ago (mid September I'm talking here), I was sick in bed. I couldn't even get up. We had two exchange students from Japan here, so I had sequestered myself so I wouldn't spread germs. Paul had left for work that Tuesday morning, but didn't know how bad I really felt.

Some time in the afternoon, the doorbell rang. I felt too crummy to get out of bed, thinking it was probably the UPS man, so I didn't get up. The doorbell rang again. There was a part of me that was agitated that I had to get up, but as I went to the door, there was the florist with a big bouquet of flowers. She had forgotten the note, but told me they were from my husband and he hoped I was feeling better. I was nearly in tears. I was so mad at myself for my selfishness. Here I was angry about getting up. I would have missed this beautiful gift. It really meant more because I thought Paul was kind of mad at me at the time anyway. I feel very blessed to be married to a good man.

I am also grateful to understand the true meaning of bouquets. I hope we can all become more grateful and appreciative. Not only do we receive these bouquets now, but this beautiful valley is a gift from those who sacrificed and went on before. That was the message of the day of the Mural Dedication.

Mom & Grandpa between their "pictures."

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