I have been sitting here staring at the screen trying to decide how to begin this post. Last week was a tough week for us. Some issues arose that left us feeling like we needed rest and relaxation more than ever. The Lord knew what our family needed this weekend more than anything, and He provided accordingly. We have had the most blissful, fun-filled weekend together. It is as if God looked down upon us and knew we needed this blessing. Of course that's what He did! I went to bed smiling last night, and tonight, I shall do the same.
Two things were going on this weekend. Coshocton's Canal Days Festival was on the courthouse square (can someone explain to me why this doesn't happen in Roscoe anymore?), and Roscoe Village was having Coshocton Appreciation Days and allowing all county residents free admission to their tour. Yep. Free events. You know we were there!
We started our Saturday with a phone call from my parents asking us to meet them for breakfast. That was a nice way to begin our day! I'm so glad that living here allows for more opportunities like that. Living in my hometown rocks. Seriously. It. Rocks.
We headed to Roscoe Village, a restored canal town, and got our free tickets for the Living History tour. I seriously had no idea what was inside the visitor's center since I think, as a teenager, I didn't really appreciate it as much as I do now. Fellow Coshoctonians who have moved away and only visit, check it out. My kids very much enjoyed the hands-on crafts, dress-up clothes and toys as well as the exhibit hall downstairs. Ava made a quilt square, Lukas painted a wooden top and both kids got to dip candles (all complimentary for Coshocton residents for the weekend only).
The only downside to our adventure was that we didn't realize how much time we needed in order to do the entire tour and see the Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum. We only planned to stay until 4 because the Canal Days parade began at 5, so we decided to get through as much as we could without rushing and to return Sunday afternoon instead of worrying about getting it all done at once.
The tour was well done. The kids got to see a blacksmith making hot dog roasters and a weaver making rag rugs for special orders (I had no idea they made such things on order in Roscoe!!!). They also learned about 19th century printing, medicine, broom making, schooling and, of course, the canal itself.
As I mentioned, Canal Days was also this weekend. We didn't go to most of the festival during the day, but we headed to the parade in the evening. It was fantastic. They really stepped things up for the bicentennial celebration. The floats were well done. The parade lasted over an hour. We very much enjoyed it!
After running home for a quick dinner, we returned to the courthouse square in time to hear the Texas Tenors perform. They were apparently on America's Got Talent, but we've never really watched that show, so we weren't familiar with them. I expected a mediocre concert. I mean, it was free to attend, so I didn't want to get my hopes up too much.
Their first number was an old country-western song. It wasn't bad, but it didn't really impress me either. Their second number? O Sole O Mio. Done perfectly. PERFECTLY. My jaw dropped. My eyes bugged out. I was stunned. Eric laughed at me. It was AMAZING. They did an incredible rendition of Danny Boy with inspirational lyrics included, and my sweet little girl asked her daddy to dance with her during it. Watching my husband dance with our little girl in the twilight on the court square will be forever remembered as one of my favorite moments ever. Adding to the effect was her southern belle gown that was bouncing back and forth as she danced. It was...unforgettable.
The Texas Tenors also did an arrangement of You Raise Me Up similar to the Selah arrangement but with pipes not unlike Josh Groban's. Wow. Sitting under the stars, listening to the cicadas singing along with great music, enjoying small town life, running into old friends...it was a perfect evening. PERFECT. Blessings from Jesus were everywhere.
After what could not be described as anything less than a difficult and challenging week, this weekend would have to be described as blessed, peaceful, joy-filled and beautiful. I could probably come up with a few more adjectives, but you might stop reading while you rolled your eyes.
I am loving living here. I was never one of those people who wanted to get out of my home town. I loved living here. I loved having roots that ran the depth of several generations. I always loved coming back and visiting. Now? I just love living here. I enjoy the slower pace of life. I enjoy being closer to my parents and running into uncles and cousins at at the grocery store. God is amazing, isn't He? Who knew that bringing me home could be one of my life's greatest blessings?