Unitarian Hymnal Sing-along

In which Kathryn attempts to sing a different song everyday from the Unitarian Universalist hymnal, 'Singing the Living Tradition'. Earlier posts are based on songs from the Reader's Digest songbooks she found at yard sales as a child, including: 'Reader's Digest Treasury of Best Loved Songs', 'Reader's Digest Family Songbook', and 'Reader's Digest Family Songbook of Faith and Joy'. Bonus Folk song material from: 'Folk Song USA', by John and Alan Lomax.

01 January 2006

"Put On Your Old Grey Bonnet"

This must not be as bad as it sounds, since she's putting on her old grey bonnet to go get married. It still doesn't sound very festive, though. And it's very short, but I think that's because it's the Reader's Digest version. Somewhere, surely, there are more verses, perhaps involving a faded dress and pair of gloves with holes.

I love hand-me-overs. When I was a kid I was not only the oldest in my family, but the oldest grandchild on either side of the family, and I didn't get any hand-me-downs from family. Later when my male cousins got a little older, I got a few shirts and such, deeply satisfying for the tomboy I was then. But it wasn't until high school and college that I experienced the joys of borrowing, or being given outright, clothes from girlfriends. What a wonderful world it is.

While new clothes are wonderful, clothes that are already broken in can be better. And it's nice to be able to replace a button, or do some other minor mending on a pair of pants or a sweater, and suddenly something that was looking old and unwearable becomes my favorite new article of clothing. I'm also a big fan of yard sales and thrift stores, though it's extra special to get clothes from people I know. I have one friend who has closets full of clothes, some she's received from her sister as hand-me-overs. A couple times a year she'll pull together a bag of stuff that I'll try on at her place, it's like a mini-fashion show. We wear the same size shoes, too, an extra bonus. And I'll find myself taking all sorts of stuff: anything black, for starters, and things that suit me, but also there'll usually be something just a bit outside of my usual range that I'll grab. And often it's that new thing, that different item, that becomes my new favorite, my new look. Somehow the shirt that I'd never try on new becomes the just right thing as a hand-me-over.

As an added present: when I wear clothes I've gotten from friends I think of them. Even years later I'll put on a sweater and think: Jessica. Laura. Erica. Jamie. Kellee. And it's that little bit of extra love I carry around. Bonuses galore, indeed. Got an extra bonnet that I can have? And think of you?


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