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Definition: Grace Note – an extra note added as an embellishment and not essential to the harmony or melody.

Sometimes it’s the little things…

a cliché, I know.

But some clichés still carry their weight,

no matter how many times they’ve been used (or over-used).

Before I had a teen girl of my own,

I’d borrow one

from an older friend.

We’d go shopping and eat ice cream,

or I’d bring her home to hang out,

grill sandwiches dripping with cheese,

and bake cookies…

we’d sing along with our favorite songs,

watch a movie,

do some sewing,

or sit contentedly with a bowl of popcorn,

each immersed in a book,

only talking when coming up for air.

It’s just something I’ve done all these years…

probably doesn’t have a whole lot to do with being in the ministry,

but more with having been a teen once,

struggling in the transformation of becoming a woman,

and appreciating the older women who made time for me.

Having a teen daughter now means bringing other teen girls home with us,

between Sunday church services, after school or work, and for overnights.

They fix deli sandwiches,

make popcorn,

whip up a smoothie,

then raid the pantry and ‘fridge at midnight…

Sitting on the sofa with their laptops—

one ear bud in one girl’s ear and the other in the other girl’s ear—

they’re listening to favorite songs,

watching side-splitting videos on YouTube,

and chatting with other friends…

the musical ones sit on the piano bench side by side,

they play and sing, and ooh and aah over each other’s progress.

Once in a while we take a day trip

or shop till we drop at discount and thrift stores.

Almost always I’ll hear a Thank you, Mrs. C!

and get a hug before they leave,

thus leaving my house much quieter,

bereft of silliness, whispering, laughter, singing.

A couple of her friends have endeared themselves to me

for one reason or another,

and inevitably I tell them something like,

I love you, Sweets. Not as much as my own daughter, of course,

but close.

I usually get a lopsided smile with a twinkle in the eyes.

And on a rare occasion I’ll get a card or a note.

Note from Grace

You know…

we could get by in life without some of the little things,

with no extra embellishments

or grace notes added to the standard melody line.

But how my heart nearly burst when I found this note

stuck to my kitchen counter one day

after a certain young friend spent the night.