Day OFF 

Wednesday was a day off for us -- Miles has just gone through his vocals really quickly this time around, so there was pretty well nothing to do until Thursday when Reggie and Ladye come to record their background vocals. So... the two of us just had a blast together. We headed to Mickey D's first of all, to get me some coffee (REALLY MISSING GOOD COFFEE about now!), and to look on the internet to see what's worth seein' in Nashville. Miles being the Civil War buff that he is, his ears perked up when I said "one of the biggest Civil War exhibits is at the Tennessee State Museum." The clincher was that there was also a Checkers fast food joint nearby. So we headed out to downtown Nashville, parked in a parking garage (feeling like such country folkses about then), and walked over to the museum. Museums have never been THAT interesting to me, but I had my own personal tour guide in Miles, and it was good fun. I now know more than I ever imagined there WAS to know about Civil War cannons, tactics, guns, knives, swords, generals ... you name it. I've been edumercated. 

So after the museum, we headed to Checkers, got an unholy amount of burgers, and stopped in Centennial Park to eat 'em. The birds and squirrels were SO used to people... they'd come right up to Miles and I, stop a couple feet away, and basically beg for food. We were ooh-ing and ahh-ing over how cute they were, and I asked Miles what his Granddad would do if he were to come there. "BAM" was his answer, I think. :) 

Back at the Irwins' house that afternoon, we heard Mr. Ed playin' the pinaner. Miles popped up saying, "Hey, that's the song we were listening to the Imperials sing this morning! I gotta go sing!" So we sang around the piano until they had to leave to go to church. We enjoyed it so much. 



Day SIX - background vocals with Stephen Hill 

Miles and I were met at AFAB studio this morning by a seemingly 7-ft tall burly man with a slow Carolina drawl. That would be Stephen Hill. Miles and I are listening to him now singing background vocals. Miles keeps tapping me on the arm, "Did you hear that?" "I've got goosebumps!" "Oh my GOSH!" He's right... I've got goosebumps too. It's that good.























Donuts ... and PLAYGROUND! 

After finishing up at the studio yesterday, Miles and I took Tommy out for dinner. I've been telling Miles that we'd get some donuts for his birthday, so after dinner the two of us headed to Dunkin' Donuts for some sugary goodness. I think it's been years since I've had a donut.

We took our loot to a park in Bellevue, and ate two or three bites of each on a old dilapidated picnic table there. Talk about a sugar rush! We worked off the excess energy playing on the playground. Time we got back to the car, we were a sweaty, smelly, happy mess. 











Day Five - "October Harvest" and finishing up "Real Faith" 

Miles and Tommy knocked out the first song of the day, "October Harvest" in short order this morning before starting on the parts for "Real Faith." Anticipating an early quittin' time, they just kept on and kept on and kept on working on "Real Faith," ... and just now finished up at 4:45. Lunch, anyone?
The good news: Miles is pretty well ALL DONE with his vocals. Now just to watch Stephen Hill lay his background vocals tomorrow; Reggie and Ladye lay their vocals on Thursday; and the steel guitar player lay his tracks on Friday. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, Miles has concerts; Sunday morning in GA he'll do a concert, and then we're on our way to Loganville, GA. So, all that to say... it's pretty well a downhill slide from here - the work is just about done. I'm so proud of my baby -- he is an amazing singer among MANY other things. I consider myself the blessed-est girl in the world.

Sunday = A Day OFF! 

Miles and Tommy made so much headway on Saturday that they decided they could safely take the day off on Sunday. Of course, Miles and I did just that. Tommy? Take a day off? Hardly. Miles and I went to Mr. Ed and Mrs. Rebecca Irwin's church, River of Life in Smyrna Sunday morning. Sunday afternoon, we took a walk down memory lane...

For lunch after the service at River of Life, we went to the Ruby Tuesday in Murfreesboro at which we'd said goodbye in 2010 when we were finally "official." At that time, when we were finished eating, I had to go back to GA, and Miles had to go back to TX, and we didn't know when we'd see each other again. It was a MUCH happier meal this time.








After lunch we headed to MTSU, where the 2010 Stamps-Baxter School of Music was held. This is the tree that we were standing under in July 2010 when I uttered the fateful words, "Well, I'm as ready as I'm gonna be" -- meaning that I was as ready as I was gonna be to be Miles' girlfriend. Not at all that I wasn't happy to be officially 'in a relationship' with Miles, but I'd settled in my mind a long time ago that I'd not date anybody unless I was planning on marrying on them. So in my mind, that "I'm as ready as I'm gonna be" was saying a LOT. I was pretty nervous, never having done the whole "in love," "dating," "belonging to someone else" thing. 

After visiting MTSU, we headed to the other really special place in Murfreesboro for us - Stone's River National Battlefield. On the way there, we saw the place that we'd eaten on our first date - "Gyros." I didn't know it at the time, but it was the first time Miles had EVER shared a plate with anyone. Somewhat of a germaphobe, apparently. Me being from a family of 8 kids, the whole concept of "germs" is somewhat foreign to me, at least with people I'm close to. So I suggested sharing a plate, not thinking anything of it. And Miles says it didn't phase him even a little bit. :)

This is "our" bench at Stone's River Battlefield. In 2010, we must have sat in this very spot just talking and enjoying being together for 2-3 hours. We were, as Miles says, "plumb tickled" that we actually FOUND the same bench again! It's pretty well off the beaten path.




It was so nice to go back and revisit the place that... well, I won't say "the place we fell in love," 'cause I know I fell in love with Miles months before that, and he says he fell in love with me the first time he saw me. I'll call it the place that we pretty well committed to a serious, "this is gonna lead to marriage" relationship. We both agree that it is SO much nicer being married and doing things together than it was when we were dating in 2010. Peter says marriage is the 'grace of life' (1 Peter 3:7), and I heartily agree.

Day... 4? 

 Fourth day, and Miles and Tommy have pretty well knocked out all but a couple of the songs. Today they recorded "One" in the morning, then "Real Faith," then "Church Homecoming" in about 30 minutes and now they're pretty well through with "It Takes Faith." Listed below in order are the songs for "Blood Kin." When I say 'done,' I'm referring to Miles' lead vocals, not to the background vocalists or any extra instrumentals Tommy and Miles decide to put on specific songs. 

1. The Church Homecoming - done
2. October Harvest
3. I Made Time For You - done
4. It Takes Faith - almost done
5. Real Faith - lead vocal done, the other three parts not yet
6. I Can See Through You - done
7. One - done
8. That's What I Call Love - done
9. Safe In Daddy's Hands - done
10. Tell Me How To Get There - done
11. Redemption Complete - done
12. Ever New But Never Changing - done
13. His Blood Has Made Us One - done

SO... they're doing pretty good! 

That's a wrap, folks!  

So we're at the end of the day! These last two songs were SO FUN -- "I Made Time For You" and "God Is Ever New But Never Changing." Tommy's getting sangin' out of Miles that I've never heard before. Can't wait to hear the finished stuff.

Tell me how to get there, I really want to go
To the land of promise where milk and honey flow
I wanna be with loved ones and family everywhere
I really wanna know how to get there.

I’ve heard ‘em say, “Just go on straight
Keep your eyes on the prize, it’ll lead to the gate.”
But all the saints in heaven say there’s just one way they came
They found salvation in Jesus’ name.

Tell me how to get there, I really want to go
To the land of promise where milk and honey flow
I wanna be with loved ones and family everywhere
I really wanna know how to get there.

The way hasn’t changed since the Bible days
Jesus is still the one and only way.
Just believe and call upon His name
And then when you get there, you can tell me how you came.

Day Three: "Safe In Daddy's Hands" 

Izzy's got the right idea. This is definitely a nap/coffee day. And this despite getting up an hour later at 8 in order to start at Tommy's at the usual 10AM time instead of the last two days' 9AM. So, following Izzy's lead, I'm chilling on the sofa in the back room (Izzy's got the bed), listening to Miles and Tommy work on "Safe In Daddy's Hands." 

Daddy worked his life away at a saw mill, didn’t get to spend much time at home
but it was his labor of love that made our house a home
I remember many times he came in bleeding to the bone
He’d wrap it up, go back to work, you wouldn’t hear him carry on.
I saw it all as a little boy, but now I see the scars in his hands
I realize with brand new eyes I’ve just begun to understand.


Daddy’s hands helped me understand the Christ of Calvary
To know that there’s a God Who loves and cares for me.
I guess God and Jesus knew a child would need to understand.
That’s why they left the Gospel safe in Daddy’s hands.

Those same hands that taught me discipline and steadied my first step
I know are waiting in the wings if I should need his help
Oh what a blessing to know Christ, through those loving faithful hands
What a vision of the Savior that helps me understand
Now I see through grown up eyes, and I am grateful to the man
May all see that same Christ in me -- I’ll show them if I can.

Daddy’s hands helped me understand the Christ of Calvary
To know that there’s a God Who loves and cares for me.
I guess God and Jesus knew a child would need to understand.
That’s why they left the Gospel safe in Daddy’s hands.

When I sit and hold my baby, and I look down to see
Are the hands that hold my child the same hands that cradled me?
Will my children see in all I do the Christ of Calvary?
Was God so wise when He gave the Gospel plow to me?
I saw it all as a little boy, but now that I’m a man
I realize with brand new eyes, I’ve just begun to understand.

Daddy’s hands helped me understand the Christ of Calvary
To know that there’s a God Who loves and cares for me.
Now I see through brand new eyes and I’m grateful to the man
Oh, I’ve just begun to understand...Daddy’s Hands

Day Two, Song Two: "His Blood Has Made Us One" 

Boy oh boy was this song a booger. We all love it, and it really is a great song, so there was pressure to not just make it good, but great. And not just great, but perfect. As well, the song is really intense. Not really a 'bellerin' song, but absolutely a song that has to be sung intensely and passionately. Keeping up that kind of energy all the way through the necessary nitpicking process is really draining. Not that I would know, but I've observed. Like Tommy says, "If it was easy, everybody would be doing it."
So by the time 3:30 came around, the song was finished up, and Tommy called it a day so he could go to a graduation ceremony, Miles was about wrung out, bless his heart. Really it was a God-thing that the day we recorded this song was the short day at AFAB. We got to go back to the Irwins, get in a good sized nap, and then enjoy an evening with Mr. Ed and Mrs. Rebecca at the Chop House. It was truly a joy to get to know them over a wonderful dinner. They are a beautiful couple. I love to watch Godly couples who have been through years of the bad and the good together and have come through loving each other and loving God. Back at the house, we laughed with Mr. Ed at Barney, Andy, Opie, and the new mayor before hitting the sack. The perfect end to a long day.

From many different backgrounds
With many varied interests
Yet we were all so lost and undone
But Jesus' love and mercy
Has brought us together
His blood has made us one.

His blood has made us one;
The blood of God's own Son.
One in purpose, one in power.
His blood has made us one.

We have no cause to be here,
together as a family,
if there were not a common bond.
But Jesus' blood has saved us.
We're brothers and sisters.
His blood has made us one.

We may not all agree on
The things that aren't important
For we are all made different, you see.
But we're members of His body
And we're joined together
In love and unity.

His blood has made us one;
The blood of God's own Son.
One in purpose, one in power.
His blood has made us one.
 

Day Two: "I Made Time For You" 


Got back to the place we're staying at 10:30 last night, and were up and at 'em again at 7 in order to be at AFAB by 9AM. Miles' choice of which song to work on was kind of apt, now that I think of it -- "I Made Time For You." Cuz we... well, ok, I was wondering if enough time had been made for us when we left AFAB at 9:45 last night. :) But... God is faithful and coffee is one of His bestest creations, so we're good this morning. So... Miles just finished the vocals for that song. Contrary to what might easily be assumed, the expression he's wearing in the picture to the right is supposed to convey excitement and joy at finishing the song, not horror and disgust at the photographer's lack of coffee-fixing skills. Long story. So... now we're fixin' to choose which song to record next -- "His Blood Has Made Us One" or "Safe In Daddy's Hands." Don't fall off the edge of your seats while waiting to hear the final decision, folks.

I see the moon and stars, all the planets in the sky
Like the workings of a clock, it makes me wonder why
Their majesty and grace make me feel so small
In the wonder of the universe I can hear my Maker’s Call

I made time for you to find out who I AM
I made time for you to seek me while you can
I’m not so far away that I can’t be found
I made time for you when I made the worlds go ‘round

He formed the universe, more than eye can see
And still somehow He found, time for making me
In every place I look are glimpses of His face
In all the good and simple things are echoes of His grace.

I made time for you to find out who I AM
I made time for you to seek me while you can
I’m not so far away that I can’t be found
I made time for you when I made the worlds go ‘round

The clock upon the wall (just) keeps a’tickin’ on.
Life is slippin’ by so fast, don’t wait until it’s gone
It’s borrowed breath we breathe; let’s give Him everything,
and live our lives in such a way that makes our Maker sing!

I made time for you to find out who I AM
I made time for you to seek me while you can
I’m not so far away that I can’t be found
I made time for you when I made the worlds go ‘round

I'm not so far away that I can't be found
I made time for you when I made the worlds go round.
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