Just the kind of morning you want to explore something new, have an adventure, clean up messes, read a good book with the windows open, sing all kinds of songs, swing on a swing, climb a tree, in other words, it feels like spring and I feel as though I am 10 years old! (Or maybe I just wish I felt that young.:)) There is hardly a cloud in the sky and the sun is rising ever higher. I heard a cardinal singing early this morning. Spring. The time of new beginnings. I am reminded of the verse: "Forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto the things which are before, I press towards the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." (I don't know if I quoted it just right or not.)
Now, I don't know if any of you really read my ramblings at the beginning of each post, but if you do, let me know by casting your vote on the side poll. :)
I have been doing some writing. Not a whole lot, though I have several weeks worth of things to post. So, if you haven't read Meleah's Western for a while or maybe never at all, you might want to get to reading it because I have four parts written and a start of a fifth! And let me tell you, these characters certainly do things I had never dreamed of. I am also no longer able to write these Westerns on Sunday afternoons like I did at the beginning. Strange. Now I have to write them in the evenings. But that can be a good things because I get more written since there are more evenings than Sunday afternoons.:)
But, I've rambled enough. Here is the rest of the story from last week. What do you think of the end of it? Do you still like it? Thanks so much each of you who left a comment last week. That is the only way I know if a story was liked or not. Okay, okay, I'll stop!:)
September 18,Oh, I’m so excited! Justen and I went out to Tenderfield’s farm this morning and talked with Mr. Tenderfield. His farm is so lovely; ten acres of beautiful fields with rolling hills and a lovely little two story farm house. Out in the side yard is an enchanting little garden with a bubbling fountain. That is where we’ll get a few pictures taken. I told Mr. Tenderfield that years ago I had picked that garden as the place to take my wedding photos. But the wedding will be in the field by the orchard, or in the large, old barn if it rains.
We tell all our plans tonight. I wonder what the girls will think? I know Mom and Dad and Austen will be pleased, and I think Mr. and Mrs. Tenison will too. It is Britteny and Courteny I’m thinking of. Oh, well. I’ll let their brothers handle them.
September 19,It is morning. A storm is threatening to break over the town as I write. Thankfully, there wasn’t a storm last night when Justen and I told the wedding plans. I think the girls were rather disappointed to learn it wasn’t going to be large and fancy; however, since the rest seemed to like the plans, they joined in. I did make them happy by telling them they both got to be in the wedding party and could make their own dresses. I don’t know what they would have done if I had decided to have them wear denim skirts.
Wow! There went the electricity.
September 21,That was rather an abrupt ending. The power was off nearly all day because the storm wouldn’t let up long enough for the power company to fix things. I guess it isn’t a good idea to try messing around with electric wires in a storm.
Anyway, today is glorious! Austen and I walked over to Grouten Hall where we met Justen. Austen than hurried off. Did I mention that he is working as an assistant teacher in science as well as helping out with the football team? I never could understand science very well. Maybe I should have asked Austen for help more often.
Spent the morning shopping with Justen. Then I set the girls to work on their dresses. They are so excited. They’ll be the only bridesmaids. Like I said, things are simple.
Going to go sew my dress. Maybe I’ll get the girls to help me. But then again, perhaps I won’t.
October 1,Been too busy to write. My dress is done. It was easy and simple. The girls finished theirs and showed them off at supper tonight. Everyone loved them.
October 2,I wish I could write down all that Mr. Tenderfield has said. Justen and I went out to see him again to get some last minute things arranged.
He was showing us through the house (though not much has changed since I used to hang out there so many years ago) and suddenly he stopped and looked at me. “Yep,” he nodded. “You’ll make a real purty bride.”
I’m afraid I blushed, but Justen agreed with a smile as he gave my hand a squeeze.
“Yes, sir’ee! A right purty bride. Couldn’t be any purtier ‘en my wife was sixty-nine years ago. I wish she could’ve lived to see this. She always wanted a weddin’ here at the old farm, but no, all the child’ern wanted real stylish weddin’s. You know, big churches, lots of pomp an’ floof an’ heaps of people and flowers an’ this an’ that.”
I couldn’t hold back a smile at the thought that if our sisters had had their way, that is what our wedding would be like. “Mr. Tenderfield, we want you to come to the wedding, too, you know.” I didn’t know if he would, even if he has known me for so long.
Justen added to my plea and assured Mr. Tenderfield that even if he came in his overalls and boots, he was wanted. That seemed to please the old man, and he smiled broadly and said in his quaint, unpretentious way, “Well, now, if you’d really like me to come, I reckon I can find somethin’ clean at least. I’ll be shore an’ be there, the Good Lord willin’, in my best bib an’ tuckers.”
October 4,Well, Journal, today is the last day I can sign myself Kristen Annette Burten. Tomorrow is the wedding! I’m so excited! This afternoon we have a “rehearsal” though I still don’t know why we need one. But I could care less. Mrs. Tenison, (I can’t wait to call her “Mom”) has been such a dear about the dinner. Justen told me that Courtteny begged to do something elaborate and grand, but Mrs. T said no. They are doing, if you can believe it, a hot dog roast with s’mores out at the farm! The only stipulation Justen told me he made was that no one was allowed to get hurt.
I didn’t tell you the colors of the wedding, did I? It is all fall. Austen and Dad are going to cut a few small branches of real leaves for me to add to my bouquet just before the wedding. The trees are breathtaking! Riotous gold, scarlet, russet and brown are everywhere. Britteny and I gathered arm loads of cattails and stuck them in vases for the picnic tables and for the girls to carry along with some bright flowers.
Yesterday, Austen and Justen moved the last of my things out to our house. It is only a few blocks away, and I can still walk to the football stadium and watch them practice if I want. Mom baked the wedding pies. She loves to bake, and she is so glad to be back at home instead of working that Dad is afraid she’ll bake us out of house and home.
I must end this. Dad and I are going to go for a walk and then it will be time to head to Tenderfield farm. I think I’d like to walk there with Dad. I’m going to go ask him if we can. Austen can drive the others.
October 15,I’ve been Mrs. Tenison now for ten days and just now picked this little book up. We are all settled in our little home. But, I want to tell what happened only last week. We were still on our honeymoon when Justen’s cell phone rang. I only could hear one side of the conversation.
“Hello, . . . When did it happen? . . . He is? . . . Yes, of course . . . We’ll be there. Thanks.”
Turning to me, Justen put his arm around me. “That was Mom. Mr. Tenderfield had a heart attack yesterday and is in the hospital. They don’t think he’ll live much longer.”
I bit my lip. Not, Mr. Tenderfield!
“He was asking for us. I said we would come.”
“Of course! Can we go now?”
Justen nodded, and we were soon on our way.
At the hospital, we found Mr. Tenderfield just hanging on to life. His only son and two daughters were there, but he wanted to see us. How changed he looked. There was no color in his face and there were monitors and things around him. He seemed to be sleeping when we entered, but his son Denten touched him gently and his eyes opened. He smiled when I slipped my hand into his and whispered, “I wanted to say good-bye. You two may not have started out life together with a lot of fuss,” he smiled again, “but you have love. True love.”
His eyes closed, and his hand relaxed. He seemed to be slipping away when, with last effort he once more opened his eyes and whispered, “I’ll tell Lisette all about the wedding.” And then he was gone.
Oh, I can’t write the rest of the day. His funeral was on the tenth. Today Denten came by with news. The old Tenderfield farm has been left to us on the condition that we never change its name. Us? The farm? Denten assured us that none of the siblings wanted it. They were all completely content with where they were. Of course much of the old furnishings and things in the house went to the children, as it should be. I still can’t believe it is ours! I think I’ve cried more since I got married than the entire year before. Justen is so sweet about it all. He knows that old farm has held many tender memories. I don’t know when we will move. Probably not until spring.
Justen is almost ready. We are going to go walk to the farm and look around. I’ll show him all the places I loved as a child. I know when I get back there will be much to do. When I will write in you again, dear journal, I can’t say. Maybe tomorrow, maybe never. There aren’t many pages left in here. But, however, I’m glad I’ve recorded what I have. And now, just because I want to write it out here, I’ll sign myself, Kristen Tenison.