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My girls were scheduled to do a few clogging numbers yesterday at a car show in our small town.  Yes, you read that right.  Trust me.  When you live in the foothills of Appalachia and your town is named Bean Station, you’re bound to find yourself at a car show some  Sunday clog dancing.  I wouldn’t have it any other way.  And despite the fact that the our hearts were broken this year when the girl’s dance school closed, we’ve managed to pick up the pieces as best we could and keep dancing here and there. (Thank you Tessa and Heather!) The love, discipline, hard work ethic and overall high standards of Lakeway School of Dance still lives on in my girls.  We will be forever grateful.

Before heading out to church, we packed the green t-shirts, the tap shoes, and the cooler full of retro sandwiches.  (I was in state of Sunday morning emergency and had to buy the sandwich fixins at the gas station, which meant white bread, somewhat sketchy sandwich meat and Kraft slices.  My girls were thrilled at the softness of the bread, but I couldn’t get to the grocery store fast enough this morning to get some respectable meat.   The six pack of Oreos, which cost more than a whole pack at the grocery store, totally made up for what was lacking in the throw-back sandwiches.)

We had to scoot out of the service a little early to make it on time to the car show.

When we got there, the sound system was blasting with sixties tunes.  The souped up cars and the old men who love them reminded me that there’s something kinda quaint about both. My adorable nephew and my very talented brother in law restore old cars and I know the endless hours of meticulous work that goes into making a car look like that.  I scouted the place  for a car that might parallel Corey’s beautiful black Camaro, but I didn’t find one quite as stunning and perfect. Or anybody as cute him either!

Corey's Camaro

The girls looked around with wide eyes.   They murmured about the difficulty of dancing on that make shift stage to a handful of old men who’d rather be looking at cars.

They did great.  They danced like it was a sold out crowd of their peers.  They did as they’ve been taught so well by the best of teachers—don’t leave anything on the stage but sweat.

I wander how often we wish our work was for more than just our children, a few blog readers, or an ungrateful boss.  How often we wish our time to shine would come—that someone would notice the hard work, the long hours, the faithfulness?

Be sure of this.  Someone very important notices.  And we’re not here to keep tally or to demand results from the work we do.

We’re just here to do good work, thankful that we have a job to do and someone to do it for—be it one tiny 3 month who can’t say thank you or a handful of men in Carhartt jackets who’d rather be talking carburetors.

Don’t wait until someone important shows up before you do your work well.

Just keep your nose to the grind and do good work.

Don’t do it halfheartedly.  Go all out.  Bring your A game.

The excellence and integrity with which you do your work will light a fire under those around you.

You will kindle something special in your circle of influence, not just by what you do, but by how you choose to do it.

So, Light it up. 

Like it’s dynamite.



And speaking of doing good work and not squandering our gifts away, did you remember that tomorrow, we’re gonna meet here at my place and share our {UN} words of the year?  Whatever word you want to {UN}do in your life, declare it on your blog, or FB, or IG, and share it with us tomorrow, where we’ll link up our posts and share our stories, using the hashtag #unword2014.   Hope you’ll join me, Nester, Darlene, and Angela as we kick some words to the curb!

Unword2014badge_rough draft

29 comments on “Light It Up”

  1. Edie, the video clip was adorable….but please pardon my west coast ignorance, but is there a difference between tap and clogging? Here we would call that performance tap dance…is there a geographical difference? Love it regardless and sharing with our children the passion for doing ones best no matter what….

    dawn in sac

    • dawn in sac– As a former clogger, I believe the difference is that clogging shoes have an extra tap on the bottom that rattles around and makes the “tapping” much louder than regular tap. I also think clogging is traditionally performed to country music. I always said it was a cross between riverdance, tap and line dancing. Of course I haven’t done it in 15+ years so my memory might be lacking. They had both tap and clogging at my dance studio growing up and those were the main differences I noticed.

  2. Loved it! I know many, many hours of practice went into their performance. Discovered the blog world (and yours in particular) almost 2 years ago. I enjoy it immensely! We have 4 children (3 boys, 1 girl) ages 21,19,16 & 13. I feel like we’re kind of at the same stage in life. (Except you get A LOT more done in a day than I do. 🙂
    Your writing blesses me every time. Thank you.

  3. I am loving this series on vocation and calling! As a SAHM, home-schooling her two young sons (5 & 3), I have been struggling feeling that I am not doing enough for my household. Your series has spoken to my heart and it has been wonderful. Even as I am doing laundry today I am reminded of who I am doing it for – my neighbor and ultimately Christ! Thank you, thank you, thank you! Keep up the wonderfully, inspiring work.

  4. You have totally brought back hilarious memories of my childhood. I used to be on a clogging team in Florida that traveled to local county fairs and performed at nursing homes. Fast forward 10 years when I was playing college volleyball, and I had the fastest feet in the footwork drills. I credited my clogging days for that particular talent. Good times!

  5. I agree with everyone…the clogging is wonderful, your girls are precious and I want my 4 granddaughters to clog!!! I think I want to too… just always looks like the most fun. In my little southern town the dance studios want the girls to be 8 before they clog, and mine are almost there. Cars, clogging and questionable meat on white bread……does it get much better? Oh yes, I forgot…old men wandering around too.

  6. I just had to comment on this post, Edie. I am so very grateful to have found your blog. Your content speaks right to my S O U L – every single time; whether it’s about loving my husband well, or taking time to cook supper for my family (ps – dislike everything about it), being intentional about serving my “neighbor”, or sitting my butt down and stopping what I’m doing and really listening to my precious 10 and 13 year old daughters – one at a time -, and now this…you celebrating them and encouraging them – regardless of the stage or the audience.

    I look so forward to your posts. The scriptures. The wisdom. Thank you for sharing your heart. I am stronger and somehow walk away empowered with a beautiful next, right thing that I CAN do.

    Pretty sure we’d be friends if we met. I was raised in Texas, but call Nashville home now, live in cowboy boots or flip flops, am a bargain hunter, a decorator, a Christian – but only learning in the last 5 years or so what that really means – and deciding moment by moment to be grateful for this life.

    Thanks for the inspiration. Love. Love. Love the clogging and the music! Hats off to your girls!

    PS: And If it’s okay, I’m adopting your “FIGHT FOR JOY” motto.

  7. That is adorable! I so appreciate the shot of the stage at the end. That was scary! Kudos to your girls! Your inspiration to do our best is fantastic. Thanks for cheering us on.

  8. Way to dance girls! Fabulous! Clogging! Love it! And Buck dancing as well.
    Edie, I feel like you are on my shoulder with a tiny megaphone right in my ear. Nose to the grind stone- Don’t do it half-heartedly, Go all out! Don’t wait until someone important shows up before you do your work well. Y-E-S!!!
    Always, in ALL ways. Our Father sees in secret and rewards openly. I learned long ago, it’s those days when I want to give up that I need to swing hard & swing for the home run. We never know who is watching. I may be the only example that someone sees that day.
    Thank you for what you have been writing and sharing recently. I really appreciate you. Thank you for sharing the video. Again, Girls, y’all were GREAT!!!!! YAHOOOOOO 🙂 Keep on dancing 🙂

  9. Oh my word, green t’s and jeans!?!??! I live in Gatlinburg each summer and love it when the cloggers appear but so feel for them in thick hose and the curly hair wigs. I know it’s traditional but I’d be miserable. They work so hard!

  10. Awesome performance! I love seeing this and not the made-up, scarce costumes and sadness of some young girls that are in pageants or dancing. To me, that is very sad for the girls. I know you’re so proud of these beauties ~ I would be!

    Thanks for always sharing good words for us to think on.


  11. Edie,
    I just found your blog last week and I love it! This post is amazing. I especially loved the quote “Don’t wait until someone important shows up before you do your work well.” So true! It rang in my head all evening while I fixed supper for my family and tucked my babies into bed.

    Also, I grew up in Kingsport and currently live in Kentucky so I was excited to actually recognize the hometown of a blogger! Hurray for the Appalachian foothills! 🙂

  12. Thank you for sharing the video of your girls dancing – they look like they are having a lot of fun 🙂 My own girls do tap and irish dancing and, I must say I was expecting white shoes and square dance type skirts. What a good surprise! I’ve been told that tapping and the like are the hardest of all the types of dancing. Good for them, and without a dance school too!

  13. Loved the clogging! If you are ever around Athens, Alabama for the Annual Fiddler’s Convention in October you should enter your girls in the clogging contest. They are awesome!

  14. “We’re just here to do good work, thankful that we have a job to do and someone to do it for…” You have know idea how refreshing those words were to read. Convicting, encouraging, and freeing all at the same time. It’s been ‘one of those days’ with the little’s and God used you to reach right into my heart. Thank you!

  15. Oh my goodness! I just love watching your girls clogging and to what a great song! Both of your beautiful girls have grown into such fine young ladies and are so very talented! I also wanted to tell you that I LOVE your new blog layout! It’s super YOU, so, so awesome! I hope that y’all are staying warm over in Bean Station. We didn’t get the snow that your neck of the woods got, but whew, it sure is cold! xoxo

  16. “Don’t wait until someone important shows up before you do your work well.
    Just keep your nose to the grind and do good work.
    Don’t do it halfheartedly. Go all out. Bring your A game.
    The excellence and integrity with which you do your work will light a fire under those around you.
    You will kindle something special in your circle of influence, not just by what you do, but by how you choose to do it.”

    Just the words I need to hear today!! Somehow I missed this post although I’ve been a regular reader “since the beginning of time”. But the timing of your words was perfect for me today. Thank you for being Edie. You’ve blessed me more than you’ll ever know.


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