“If I Only Had a Brain…”

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I’m quite the singer.

By that, I do not mean that I’m a good singer, only that I love to do it.

When I was in the fourth grade, Sister Aloysius leaned down during Mass to whisper in my ear, “It’s okay to just move your lips, Cindy, you don’t have to sing out loud.”

Once while cradling my tiny daughter on the edge of our bed, singing to her and feeding her, my husband leaped out of bed with a horrible shudder, gave me a terrible scowl, and went downstairs to sleep on the sofa.

A group of couples – relatives and friends – used to go on an annual weekend canoe trip. A few of the guys could be convinced to bring their guitars…as long as my sisters and I agreed not to sing.

I have never let things like that discourage me.

I love to sing!

I sang many of my younger brothers and sisters to sleep when they were babies, then did the same for my own daughters. I have quite a repertoire of lullabies and songs that will pass for lullabies.

My husband (who actually had quite an impressive singing voice) and I had a collection of interactive “traveling in the car” songs. We did a great rendition of There’s a Hole in the Bucket, with him doing the role of the kindly, dense Henry while I answered with the voice of bossy, all-knowing Dear Liza.

Now, I sing my dogs to their dinner, and I sing them along on our walks.

I sing in the car.

At work, I hum…but try not to break into song.

About twenty years ago, just about this time of year, my daughter Kate was on Beaver Island, with her young son. When I took my evening walk, I’d take Michael with me to give his Mom a little time to herself. One night as we were going out the door, Kate said, “Give me a minute to put on my shoes, Mom, and I’ll come along with you.”

I was thrilled!

As we took turns carrying Michael on our shoulders, we sang and danced our way down the Fox Lake Road. We sang all the standards: Red River Valley, She’ll Be Comin’ ‘Round the Mountain, Red, Red Robin, My Darlin’ Clementine…

We sang John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt, shouting in all the right places.

We sang all the songs from Mary Poppins.

We sang every song from the Wizard of Oz.

Without a care in the world, we belted out the songs…out of tune and at the top of our vocal capacity. What fun!

The next morning, I went in to serve breakfast at the Shamrock Bar and Restaurant.

For November, the place was surprisingly full.

Of men.

In blaze orange and camouflage.

All giving me quizzical looks.

It was opening day of hunting season!

The woods lining the Fox Lake Road had been full of hunters the evening before, as my little troupe made our singing, dancing way down the road.

I’m quite the singer, alright!

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8 responses »

  1. Awww Cindy, I love this! I too, like to bellow in song every now and then – and whenever my hubby scowls when I do, I remind him that scripture says to “make a joyful noise unto the Lord”. Hugs!

    • It makes me grin, still, to think how surprised they must’ve looked to be hearing “Ding-dong, the witch is dead…” from their hunt camp in the woods of Beaver Island! Thanks for reading, Yvonne, and for your comments!

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