Champions have stopped fretting over the drought and are putting effort into becoming accepting of the mud. While they try to count and name all the different colors of green showing up in the wonderful wild, they remember that it all looked like a big gray brush pile just a few weeks ago. Things change, sometimes slowly and sometimes rapidly. Weather is an issue that people living out on the surface of the planet must endure. J.C. Owsley over in Cross Timbers said, “My pouting may have paid off. The rain gauge has three inches in it now and it’s still raining. My investment in fertilizer on hay fields may pay off this year.” The General of Vanzant said “I don’t know of any tornado or wind damage. The thunderstorm moved through the metro area quickly. We got 2 and .7 inches of rain.” Teresa Tost keeps us alerted to dangerous weather. We appreciate her warnings, updates, and radar explanations. Clever Creek went from dusty dry last week to a raging torrent on Friday and by Monday just a wide damp ditch with random puddles. T. S. Elliot said, “April is the cruelest month, breeding lilacs out of the dead land, mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots with spring rain.” It has been especially cruel to many across the country whose lives and fortunes have been dramatically altered by recent storms. We count our blessings and hope life gets better for those folks.

We cannot leave April without saying, “Happy birthday, dear Willie (Nelson).” He is 91 years old now and still sharing music and a positive perspective on the world. He said, “When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around.” “We are the same. There is no difference anywhere in the world. People are people. They laugh, cry, feel, and love, and music seems to be the commons denomination that brings us all together. Music cuts through all boundaries and goes right to the soul.” Even bluegrass jams have some Willie in them.

El Cinco de Mayo is on Sunday. It is not really a Mexican holiday, but just a celebration of the victory over the Second French Empire at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. Mexico has an interesting history. Linda Heffern up in Springfield is a history buff who could likely shed light on that whole era. Her birthday is May 6th. Skyline School’s first grade student Dahlia Winter will celebrate on May 8th. Champion grandson, Jay Williams, was born May 7, 1990. We remember Champion Bonnie Brixey Mullins on May 9th. She and Pete loved the Denlow School Reunion and have both been missed there in recent years. Skyline kindergarten student Wesley Boyd has his birthday on May 11th. The 12th is for another Champion grandchild, Alex Williams, born in 1989. Nurse Candi Bartch is no longer with us, but she was often at the Vanzant Jam with her fiddle and her kindness. Her birthday was May 14th. Elizabeth Heffern, Champion granddaughter, shares her birthday with a Champion grandmother, Linda Cooley on the 15th. Grandmother Karen Griswold shares her day with Champion Grandfather Alvie Dooms on May 16th. Every string playing musician in this part of the country knows Alvie or knows about him, a local treasure. Albert Einstein said, “Do not grow old, no matter how long you live. Never cease to stand like curious children before the great mystery into which we were born.” So, happy birthday, you Champions—Looking on the Bright Side!