Tag Archives: Music

Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith: 2 Friends

I believe friends are important for many reasons, especially if they are true friends that will stick by you no matter what.  There aren’t many out there.  And only those who search will find.  A few weeks ago, I was AMAZINGLY blessed and was able to get tickets to a concert.  It wasn’t just any concert….It was the 2 Friends Tour.  The tour that 2 longtime friends (who both love music) got together after quite a “few” years and sang some of the songs that were popular in the 80’s.  Songs that built their friendship.  These 2 friends are Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith.    Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith just happen to be my 2 favorite music artists of all time.  I know it might sound awful to the people who are crazy about today’s christian music, but to be frank, I don’t really get into it as much as others do, including my brother.  I prefer to go back a couple of decades to the christian music that started it all:  D.C. talk, Petra, Russ Taff, Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, Steven Curtis Chapman, Mylon LeFevre and Broken Heart, etc.  So thanks to my iPod, I can listen to as much old christian music as I like.  I don’t turn the radio on much, but don’t get me wrong, I have no problem with the christian music of today.  I am just saying that the 80’s is more my style.  I still enjoy listening to Toby Mac of course and Chris Tomlin, etc.

The concert began with a few songs written by the 2 friends:  Stay for a while, Love Will Find a Way…  It was awesome!!  Amy singing, her voice just as good of course, if not better than the 80’s, and Michael at the keyboard, just like the old days.  His musical career started off, you know, as Amy’s shy piano player.   But then Amy, being the good friend that she is, put him in the spotlight at Night of Joy in Disney World (according to my mom and dad).  He sang You Need a Savior which is one of my absolute favorites!

 When Michael left the stage, Amy Grant did her portion of the concert, going way back and singing all of the songs I love.  I knew them word for word. lol.

Photo taken from amygrant.com

The evening of the concert was quite toasty: a typical summer evening I suppose.  I thought Amy’s personality was great.  She was so laid back.  At the beginning of a song she had asked the audience to stand of up and dance.  At the end of the song the audience was sitting and fanning themselves.  Her comment was simply:  “Okay, I asked you to stand up on that one song and everybody is just sittin there fanning themselves.  I’m just gettin the lay of the land.  We’re dying out here aren’t we?  Dying.  Okay, me too.  But, um we’re just gonna carry on.  So, feel free to do whatever you want to do.   I don’t care if you take your shoes off.  It does not matter to me if you lie down on the pavement.  Whatever can just get you through the night.”  I had to laugh.  Although I felt kind of bad too, no one was acting very excited.  I was excited though.  The music was great as I had expected.

Well, half of the concert had passed and there was a slight pause, an intermission.  My mom, being the wonderfully spontaneous person that she is, found us closer seats for the second half.  As darkness began to fill the sky, Michael took the stage.  He began with a piano piece:  The Giving.  It is one of my favorite songs on Freedom, his instrumental album. Of course there were no violins, or an orchestra, but I kind of liked it better that way to tell you the truth.  And Michael told us to imagine the orchestra.  He even did motions like he was pretending to play the violin.  He is so funny.  He tells great stories the whole concert!  At one point he told the cutest story about a little girl stalking him at a mall.  :D  Once he decided to introduce himself to her, she replies, “My grandmother is your biggest fan.”

His second song was one of my all time favorites!  It is called Secret Ambition.  His voice sounded EXACTLY like the recording.  I felt like I was listening to the cd, it was THAT good.  Rocketown followed, which is also another song that I like very much.

Soon Amy was back on the stage to do an acoustic set with Michael on the piano.  They sang songs like Angels, and Thy Word.  The lights were awesome.  I enjoyed the concert SO much!  Michael finished his half with worship.  It was amazing!  His worship is the best ever!  My family and I are considering going to one of his worship concerts.

After the standing ovation, Michael and Amy finished the concert with the appropriate song, Friends. 

I will continue listening to the music of these 2 friends forever!

Here is a mix of some of the songs from the 2 Friends tour!

Would you like to listen to a few of my favorite songs?

AMY GRANT

MICHAEL W. SMITH

The songs below were at a concert in Atlanta in 1985

If you would like to listen to more: Please visit my Music Page and more videos will be uploaded soon!

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Once Upon A Time…

Once upon a time, on an ordinary, rainy afternoon, the minds of two children sailed away on a not-so-very ordinary adventure.  The lively adventure that only comes to those who read.  Any morning, afternoon, or night can grow into exciting day if you take the time to open a book and paint a picture between the lines of exciting text.  Below I have made a few lists of books I or someone else in my family has thoroughly enjoyed.  There is a list for each age group and if you are interested in a certain book, click on the title and the link will bring you to a page with more information.  Many if not all of these treasures can be hunted for and borrowed at your local fortress of literture (or library lol).

Books for Children of a Young Age (This is a list of books that my younger sister has especially enjoyed)

  

Soup Day is a delightful but simple book about one girl’s soup day from start to finish.  My sister read it in story-time once months ago and she hasn’t stopped reading it since.  She doesn’t know how to read, but since everyone in the family has read it to her trillions of times, she knows every word and can sit down and “read” it for herself.  There is something homey about this book.  Children thrive on routine, and the simple delight in this book with make this your children’s or siblings’ favorite book as well.  The illustrations are creative and fun.  They make me hungry for the warmth soup can bring, any time of the day.

This book demonstrates a quiet, simple life, which children love.  Once again, my sister has this book memorized! She “reads” it to me!  Her favorite lines from the book: “the bunnies bathed with daisy soap in silver bunny tubs, then wrapped in fluffy towels for mother bunny rubs”…”…the bunnies found a bungalow a cozy bunny home. They live there still, they always will, they made it all their own.”  This book is cozy and sweet and perfectly demonstrates a simple, family life full of the simple pleasures that are the most important after all.

A warm book full of beautiful poems written by the famous Robert Louis Stevenson.  The pictures, illustrated by Tasha Tudor, are full of imagination and color.  This is a breathtaking book which will introduce your youngest children to the wonderful world of poetry.  Every night, I would read these poems as my little sister drifted off to sleep.  This book contains some of the most well-known poetry by Robert Louis Stevenson, including The Swing, My Shadow, Bed in Summer, The Land of Counterpane, and many others.  The poems included in this book seem to be endless. 

  • “The Valentine Foxes” by Clyde Watson

Every year on Valentines Day, my mom borrows this book from the library.  This is a cute book, illustrating the joys (and frustrations) of day-to-day life.  The story is about a family of foxes preparing for Valentines Day.  The young foxes get carried away as they glue hearts and paper to everything in the dining room.  When mother fox is too busy with baby fox, the young foxes lend a helping hand and decide to make the special valentine cake themselves.  Not only is this a wonderful little story, there is a mouth-watering recipe for the foxes’ valentine cake in the back of the book.  Our family has made it a few times and we all agree that it is our favorite.  I encourage you to borrow this book from your local library next Valentines Day or any day of the year!

This book, full to the brim with music, has always been a favorite of mine since I was a young child.  The story includes a CD of musical accompaniment that goes along with the book.  The story will introduce your children to every type of music imaginable!  From classical, jazz, or blues, to opera, bluegrass, or country, the music is delightful and very beautiful.  I strongly recommend this book to anyone!

A List of Books for Older Children (This is a list of books that I have especially enjoyed)

My friend recommended this book to me and I eagerly read it shortly after.  It is an amazing true story about two young sisters and their journey of faith.  The girls are captured by indians and taken far away from their families to indian camps.  Their home is destroyed, their father murdered, and they are even separated, but they hold on to their faith during the hardest time of their life.  This book is exciting and attention-gripping.  It also demonstrates a faith in God that can never be broken.  I thoroughly enjoyed it from beginning to end.

  • “The Elsie Dinsmore Series,” by Martha Finley

Once I began this wonderful series of books, I couldn’t put them down.  They portray such an inward beauty in the main character, Elsie Dinsmore.  The books begin during Elsie’s girlhood years and end in Elsie’s last years of life.  The first two books are my favorite, but I enjoyed all of them with equal pleasure.  If you or your daughters have never read this series, I plead with you to do so now.  You will cherish these books once you have read them.  Elsie’s strong moral character and unwavering love for the Bible and her Father is heaven are a perfect example to young girls of all ages.  Girls will be inspired by Elsie’s will to never displease her heavenly father in any possible way, no matter what persecution and rejection she must endure.  This is what makes a truly beautiful person, inside and out. 

This is a exciting yet heartbreaking book about a young Christian Jew during WWII.  Adolph Hitler’s ominous statements seem only a distant threat to eleven-year-old Rudi Kaplan. But when the Nazi forces invade Poland and bomb his home city of Warsaw, Rudi finds out that he is Hitler’s enemy not only because he is a Pole but also because he’s a Jew and a Christian.The next few years change Rudi’s life forever. With only his imprisoned father’s promise that they will be reunited after the war, Rudi must learn how to survive in hiding, how to be truly brave, and how to overcome the hatred of his enemies. He must learn to die to himself and to trust the God who is mightier than any army.  Can Rudy put trust in his father’s promise, or even more importantly, his Heavenly Father’s promise that He will never leave him nor forsake him.  I have read this book so many times both by myself and with my family.  I encourage you to read it for yourself.
  • “Letters From Rifka,” by Karen Hesse

My mother read this book to my brother and I about two years ago.  It has been one of my favorite books since.  I remember listening intently to every word.  Rifka’s story is inspiring and I love how she wrote everything down between the margins of her Russian poetry book.
 Twelve-year-old Rifka’s journey from a Jewish community in the Ukraine to Ellis Island is anything but smooth sailing. Modeled on the author’s great-aunt, Rifka surmounts one obstacle after another in this riveting novel. First she outwits a band of Russian soldiers, enabling her family to escape to Poland. There the family is struck with typhus. Everyone recovers, but Rifka catches ringworm on the next stage of the journey–and is denied passage to America (“If the child arrives . . . with this disease,” explains the steamship’s doctor, “the Americans will turn her around and send her right back to Poland”). Rifka’s family must leave without her, and she is billeted in Belgium for an agreeable if lengthy recovery. Further trials, including a deadly storm at sea and a quarantine, do not faze this resourceful girl. Told in the form of “letters” written by Rifka in the margins of a volume of Pushkin’s verse and addressed to a Russian relative, Hesse’s vivacious tale colorfully and convincingly refreshes the immigrant experience. Ages 9-12.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. –This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
 
There are so many more books that I could list on my top favorites, but I couldn’t possibly post them all here.  For more lists of books I recommend, please visit my Books page.

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There is no time like Spivey time. :)

I love my choir so much!  Here is a clip of the tour choir singing one of my favorite choir songs.  When you see it live, it almost makes you cry.

Thank you so much for watching!  Please comment on any of my posts with your thoughts!

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The Swan

I love the graceful figure of a swan.  Below are a few pictures of this delightful creatures and a couple other photos.

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Below is a video of an eleven-year-old playing The Swan from Carnival of the Animals.  I hope you enjoy it. 

God’s creation is one miraculous thing.  I think that is why I like photography so much!

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An Artist with Passion

“Every good and perfect gift is from above.”  James 1:17

I enjoy gazing on a canvas full of paint.  I love studying just about any picture.  Whether it looks real or is just a pattern.  A few years ago I was watching TBN and a girl named Akiane was on the show.  She was eleven at the time and I was completely breath taken by her gorgeous paintings that looked better than most adults would paint.  Now she is about thirteen and had continued her paintings.  She paints for fun, paints with talent, but most importantly paints for God.  I invite you to visit her website below and browse her gallery.  Take your time, there are many beautiful ones, but there may be a few that catch your eye.

http://www.artakiane.com/index.htm

There are many different types of art.  Painting, drawing, photography, poetry, even singing or acting are considered “fine arts”.  I enjoy all of them, but there are a few that I am better at.  When I  am exploring nature in my backyard or have gone to a state park, I can’t help but take MANY snapshots.  Here is one of my favorites below.  My brother held an azalea in front of a small waterfall at a garden.  Wasn’t it nice of him to pose?

azaelea and water

Azalea

 I also love writing poetry.  It seems to help squeeze all of my thoughts onto the paper in a creative way.  Not to mention using such lovely words. 

The Horse’s Mount

Tis’ was a foggy day he trod

Across the grassy field

Heavy winds raked the sod

Its currents would not yield.

 

But still this day the rider rode

Under skies of gray

No sign of path or dusty road

To help the rider on his way.

 

Now as he continued his violent ride

Thunder rumbled and lightening cracked

Not a human by his side

Just a horse to lead him back.

 

Now he saw his wisdom had failed

To choose this day to roam

So with great passion “giddy-up” he wailed

And turned his steed toward home.

 

I also enjoy listening to music and playing music of my own.  I love playing the piano and singing in the choir.    There are a few albums I like listening to the best.

"Freedom" By Michael W. Smith

"Freedom" By Michael W. Smith

"The Night As Bright As Day" By Joel Clarkson

"The Night As Bright As Day" By Joel Clarkson

"Beyond Nature" By Phil Keaggy

"Beyond Nature" By Phil Keaggy

 I absolutely love the song “A Psalm of Praise” By Jeffery L. Ames and “A Joyful Alleluia” By Keith Christopher.  My choir sung both of these and I almost cried they were so beautiful.  I love all of the arts, and I thank God for giving everyone talents so that we can share them with others.

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