Older Than Any of Us!
All of my senior groups seemed pretty impressed by these cards, from back in the day, when cupids and lace ruled. We were amused to read a couple "Guess Who" signatures and to discover some postmarks from 1910. All in all, we began to feel pretty good about our young selves. These cards, from as early as 1890, were all older than any of us!
Feeling good about ourselves...
Harps and Arrows!
So we kept it light with some pondering over the absurdity of those crazy cupids and their role in the holiday! I brought along the zither so we could create some of our own "harpish" cupid music! Betty got pretty good at plucking out the melody of Brahms' Lullaby, which we thought was an appropriate love song... for a baby!
Movie Star Couples
We talked about Romantic movies and Romantic couples. Which stars had the best chemistry? Which stars really fell in love? Then we got off on tangents of who was still alive and it got a little sad. One sweet friend in my Alzheimer's group couldn't get over the news that Clark Gable was no longer with us.
The Older the Song the Better
Music That Conjures Memories
A few winced when I jumped to "love songs" of the sixties. "She Loves You Yeah, Yeah, Yeah" didn't seem to hold any sentimental value for these folks who were probably young parents at that time. They didn't find anything slow or romantic about "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" either!
Music for Dancing
The Most Touching
"Some Enchanted Evening" seemed to be the song with the most sentimental impact. With my first group, I hesitated playing the piece since there was something so sweet and sad about the recording. But I also knew it could have a magical way of delighting these folks... who can be like giddy teens sometimes! With the piano intro, the group became so suddenly still that I worried. The voices that usually holler over each other began to softly recall the song... then describe wonderful images and places. "That was a song my husband and I used to dance to." "It makes me want to be sitting and watching a sunset with someone special!" "I'm thinking of a quiet restaurant, with dim lighting..."
Martha covered her face and I could hear her sigh. I held my breath, ready to break the sad spell, then Martha's hands came down and there was a big smile, although her eyes looked wistful. "That is so beautiful!" She started and the others chimed in. We listened and talked through the piece a while longer. Such a sweet moment.
What Did I Learn?
We all agreed that Valentine's Day can be tough especially for those without love and those who are missing loved ones. But in all our groups we focused on how fortunate we were to have each other.
A lot of hugging happened around the Quilt this week!
For 20+ years children have called it the Magic Quilt. They've danced and pretended all over these colorful squares. I've dragged it to schools, shelters and studios where children have climbed on top to hear Magic Quilt Stories and to act them out.