Community Renewal International began about 20 years ago in Shreveport, LA with the vision of one man to change communities, on neighbor at a time. I've been involved in it for many years in some small capacity, but have always been so inspired by the vision behind this wonderful organization. Block by block, communities have turned around in this area and in recent years, the concept has gone nationwide and now internationally.
At the beginning of 2014, after interning with CRI last year, Callie left her job as youth director to begin working for this non-profit agency. Tonight, they celebrated their 20th anniversary with a night of music, fellowship and inspiration and Callie was able to get tickets for us to attend with them. The event was held at the historic Municipal Auditorium, noted for featuring Elvis Presley at the Louisiana Hayride many years ago, and had I known that cameras would be allowed, I certainly would have brought my Nikon rather than depending on my phone camera!
There were dignitaries from the area, the nation and even from other countries. But, the majority of the audience was comprised of folks that work on the front lines of this organization making a difference in the lives of children and families throughout the city.
The program was filled with inspiring music and recognitions.
But, the best part of the evening was the keynote speaker, former President Jimmy Carter. One of the memories I will take with me wasn't captured by my camera, but I was watching him behind a group of singers as they performed "The Battle Hymn Of The Republic". With his eyes closed, he sang along with every word.
He is now 90 years old and since leaving the presidency, has accomplished so much in the area of humanitarian efforts. With his strong faith leading him, he is quite amazing, actually.
Just as we left the building, the street was cleared and the motorcade left, whisking Carter and his entourage away. Callie, while I know you "just missed" your opportunity for an individual picture with Carter, I was able to get you in the same shot as his motorcade. Does that count?!?!
When Callie was little, she had an obsession with the MOON. I think it might have stemmed from the fact that she could easily spot it from her carseat, but she also loved the color blue and often commented about how she loved "blue moons". No month of Halloween/fall prompts would be complete without one dedicated to the MOON. While I long to be able to capture a great MOON photo, so far that has eluded me. Recently, there was a beautiful Harvest Moon, however, that I was able to capture from our backyard.
Who knows what the MOON will look like where you live today, but perhaps you'll be able to capture a shot of it. Or maybe you'll find another way to interpret this prompt.
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I have several fun FALL MEMORIES--some from my girls' childhoods and some from my own. I remember raking leaves into big piles, shaping them into forts and having leaf battles with my brothers. I remember LOTS of games of "tag football" in the backyard with neighborhood friends (one in particular that ended with a pair of teeth in my scalp and a bit of blood on both of us). And I have some vague memories of trick-or-treating with my brothers. The only costume I really remember was the year I was a "hobo", when I was about 6 or 7 years old.
But, I remember almost every detail of my own children's costumes, whether it be for Trick-or-Treating or for a school play. There was a witch, Dorothy, a Madeline, clown, a candy fairy, Laura Wilder (from Little House on the Prairie), a jester . . . the list goes on and on. In fact, I still have many of them. The one pictured below is from Jana's 3rd grade Halloween play---as you can tell from her sign, she was Mrs. Pumpkin Eater.
What is your favorite FALL MEMORY? Is there a something today that brings it all back to you like it was just yesterday? Or maybe you can capture something today that will become a FALL MEMORY in the future.
The word COZY conjures up a whole host of images for me---fireplaces, a cuddly blanket, flannel pj's . . . Last fall, Ron and I went camping at Tyler State Park. Carmelle, Chad and the kids met us over there Saturday night, but Friday night it was just us. We arrived just before dark and set up our tent. Then, but the light of a headlamp, Ron built a fire. I heated some chili over the campfire and it was so yummy. We sat and watched the fire, all cozy in our jackets and camp chairs, and listened to the sounds of the woods. Just thinking about it makes me want to go back!!!
What does COZY mean to you? Is there a special sweater or a special chair in your house that makes you feel especially warm and COZY?
Ron loves knives. I guess it's a guy thing that I don't completely understand, but it doesn't matter if it is large or small, a display of knives will always get his attention. (I guess he doesn't really understand my fascination with fabric either, for that matter). When we were in Alaska, there were several opportunities to browse fancy knives. In the end, I purchased this beautiful scrimshaw knife as a gift for Ron and he was thrilled. I don't know if he will actually use it to do any CARVING, but he loves it just the same.
October is the perfect time for pumpkin CARVING. With no young children here, I most likely won't do any CARVING this year, but I'll be on the lookout today for something that captures the prompt. What about you?
It wouldn't be October without some sort of mention of COSTUMES. I've already done one post about some that I recently made for Michael and Adellelyn, and I've posted photos of the ones I made last year. But, this year, I was able to make one more. Something teeny tiny, for a sweet little boy! Something Black and white and dear to his mama's heart.
By the way, when I went into my tiny sewing nook to begin the construction, I found a special treat awaiting me on top of my new machine!! Thanks Ron!
If you have young children, this will probably be an easy prompt for you. If not, I hope that you'll get creative and find something that would be a suitable COSTUME---maybe you'll even dress up in one yourself!!