The Red Fern Dream

When I was in the fifth grade I was introduced to the book "Where the Red Fern Grows".  I met Billy and his Grandpa; and fell in love with Old Dan and Little Ann.  I met them every afternoon - at lunch.  At lunchtime I would pull out my lunchbox and sit and eat in my classroom with my classmates while my teacher read from the book.  Perhaps we did a chapter a day, or maybe it was two chapters.  I do not remember those details; but I do remember the book.  The coon hunt, the accident, the country life, the dreams, the tears - all those memories; I still remember them in my mind.

As I would sit in the classroom eating my lunch the room would smell of orange peels and peanut butter would fill the room as the teacher would read.  She would read and I would dream of living in the country.  I had always lived in the city; but at lunch time I would imagine that I lived in the country.  In my mind I lived where the wind blew through the open windows with the smell of hay and fresh cut grass. I would dream of country meals around a wooden table and a garden growing out back. I would hear the sounds of the coon dogs as they chased the coons through the woods (a sound that has awakened me every single night this week!) 
I always knew I wanted to live in the country.  It was this city girls dream - and it came alive listening to my teacher read.

I was doing dishes the other morning when I looked out the kitchen window and saw my son walking up the driveway.  He was returning from the farm that he works at every morning.  The dogs (yes there are two now - no joke)  were close by his side and instantly I was taken back to my desk in the fifth grade classroom of Miss Perrine.  It was surreal as I watched him walk closer to the house.

I realized that I was living my dream.  My country life.  It dawned on me that my children's reality as they are growing up is what my childhood dreams had been when I was a little.  I stood and watched him saunter down the drive stopping to pet the dogs as they welcomed him back home from his chore time.  I could almost taste the orange my mom had packed in my lunch and almost feel how cold the milk was in my thermos as I stood and looked out my kitchen window.    I realized right then and there, my dream has become my reality.

This city girl has turned into a country girl in every respect of the word.  I have traded my heels  (except for an occasional Sunday) for flip flops; and you will find me many days without makeup and with dirt under my fingernails.  In the mornings you will enter my home to the smell of coffee and dish soap and you will find me looking out my window admiring the country - or my son - and knowing deep down in the very depths of my soul that I am blessed.

Thanks so much for stopping by.  I am so glad you did.


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