Sunday, May 3, 2009

Aunt Alice

It’s fascinating how a familiar song will bring back memories.  Last night I was flipping through the channels on the television and stopped on PBS Gaither Gospel music.   When mom was alive, I would go over on occasions and watch the Gaither with her on Saturday nights.  Dad and Mom would watch it every Saturday in their green recliners.  Dad with his coffee cup on the end table and popcorn bowl in his lap while Mom would sing as they sang. Mom loved to sing.  Unfortunately and as her health deteriorated, she had a difficult time catching her breath when she sang.

Mom loved Guy Penrod because she thought he looked like the photo of Jesus himself.  As he came on last night and sang "Why Me Lord" part 1 part 2, I stopped everything I was doing or thinking and focused on the song and the memories, which led to Aunt Alice.

Aunt Alice is my dad’s aunt and my Grandma’s sister. She was a wonderful inspirational woman who loved the Lord.  Aunt Alice is a woman from the Kentucky hills with an “hillbilly accent” that I loved to hear when she talked.  She had long gray braids that she wore in a wrap on top of her head.  She also worn a simple cotton printed dress and she was pleasingly plump.  (I can hear dad laughing at this description).

As you walk into her home through the back door, there was the kitchen with white metal cupboard sink and chrome leg kitchen table along  I believe red vinyl seat covered chairs. The table was full of medicine bottles, salt and pepper shakers, butter dish and today's newspapers.  She had a red utility cart and Aunt Jemima figurines throughout the kitchen.  The old vinyl floor had seen it’s better days as the prints were worn off and there were some tears.  Her kitchen had a smell of bacon or sausage that linger from the morning breakfast.  Among the clutters, one would have the feeling of warmth and love that only a grandmother or in this case Aunt Alice can bring.

From the kitchen is the dining room.  The dining room table was also full of papers and items that makes one wonders where a person will put their elbows when they eat.  Not that we were allowed to put our elbows on the table when we eat.  Also on the floors there were boxes of materials and swatches for quilts that she hand sewn throughout the years.

On the far side of the room is a phonograph player.   She had several albums she loved play and listen to.  One of those album was Kris Kristofferson that had the song “Why Me Lord” on it.  When she played it, this little girl of twelve would sing her heart out along with Kris.  Now mind you, I cannot sing a tune in a bucket, but Aunt Alice didn’t mind.  She found joy in listening to me sing to the Lord.  As she said, “Jesus loves it when I made a joyful noise unto him,” which made me sing all the more even though I didn’t understand what she meant at the time.

There were other inspirational songs and artist that she played, but when I heard Guy sang this song, the memories of Aunt Alice flowed.   She passed away many years ago.  Her legs were amputated due to diabetes.  But through all this, she never lost faith in the Lord. 

She is sadly missed, but her memories will live on in my heart. 


  1. I believe the phrase is "carry a tune in a bucket". :)

  2. You are so right, Steve. But you know your mom. :)