Sunday, April 27, 2008

His Eye is on the Sparrow

We buried my sister Phyllis on Friday. It seemed at times an eternity but she died only three months and ten days after her brain tumor diagnosis. Her son and I made all of the funeral arrangements together but he left the planning of her funeral mass to me. Choosing the readings were easy, as were picking out the flowers. Pink roses, baby's breath and white daisies were her favorites. No gladiolas please, let's use pussy willows instead. Music was a huge part of Phyllis's life. Growing up, our Mom always had a stack of records playing on her big stereo. I wanted the music to be old traditional hymns, ones we knew:

Nearer My God to Thee

Softly and Tenderly

O Lord I am Not Worthy

Beautiful Savior

I asked for "His Eye is on the Sparrow" but my friend who was helping with the music didn't think she had the sheet music for it. But after communion, soft piano notes, she played:

Why should I feel discouraged?

Why should the shadows come?

Why should my heart be lonely

and long for heaven and home,

When Jesus is my portion?

My constant friend is He:

His eye is on the sparrow,

and I know He watches me.


I sing because I'm happy,

I sing because I'm free,

for His eye is on the sparrow,

and I know He watches me.

Mom and Phyllis

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Monday, April 21, 2008


My sister passed away gently Sunday evening surrounded by the love of her son, our two brothers and myself. Phyllis missed our Mom so very much and I know that our Mom and Dad helped sing her home. All of your kind words, phone calls, cards, and emails over these last three months have meant a lot to me. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Missing My Blogging Friends

I had high hopes of finally getting a post put together tonight. Blogger and my infected, moving as slow as mud computer shot my plans. My lap top is gobbed up with something that has nearly stopped it. I can't download pictures from my camera as of today. Blogger won't let me post more than one photo at a time. Oh, well...
I have actually squeezed in a few hours of birding time in the last two weeks. My daughter and I made a road trip to Monticello (not too far from home) to see the Trumpeter Swans before they leave for the year. The swans were beautiful. These four reminded me of a group of good friends chatting. I'm so proud to say that Molly's pictures were better than mine. She has an eye for composition that amazes me. She told me I could post a few of her photos (with credit 0f course!), but that's not going to happen until I get my lap top fixed. We had such a nice afternoon together. Molly's not particularly interested in birds but is enthusiastic about nature photography. After freezing in the wind coming down the Mississippi River, we stopped for coffee. I love my girl.
Last week I spent a few hours at Mississippi River Regional Park checking out the heron rookery. I was thrilled to be able to walk up and down the river's edge watching these graceful birds and I even grabbed a few good pictures. I hope I can put a post together about that trip too. Sigh...
Update on my sister:
Many of you know that my sister is now in a nursing home. The brain tumor is growing quickly as the surgeon suspected it would so she has been admitted to a hospice program. They thankfully are very aggressive about pain and anxiety control. She seems to be comfortable most of the time and I am so very grateful that her mental illness has retreated quite a bit. I go every day and feed her her lunch and some days are good and some not so good. It's odd to be watching spring creep forward and my sister decline at the same time. The slow and steady progression of the seasons is a constant and I find that comforting.
There is hope in rebirth.