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One of the things I enjoy about being in Granville, Tennessee, on festival days is that I get so many opportunities to step back in time. Granville is unashamedly old-fashioned all the time; but, on festival days, organizers invite traditional artisans to tell their stories and showcase their talents. Once, when they were highlighting Granville during World War II, they invited our son John to tell Ray’s daddy’s World War II story in his presentation entitled “One Soldier’s Story.”

John Notgrass portrays Sgt. Wesley Notgrass wearing the uniform Granddaddy Wes wore when he arrived in New York City on his return voyage in 1945!
John Notgrass portrays Sgt. Wesley Notgrass wearing the uniform his grandfather wore when he arrived in New York City when he returned home from Europe in 1945!

Last Saturday we got to meet a real, live organ grinder.

Ted Guillaum, the Organ Grinder
Ted Guillaum, the Organ Grinder

I believe this was Ted Guillaum’s first time to showcase his historic talent in Granville. He had a fun presentation in which he told about his organ and also explained the technology, which is similar to the organs you see on a carousel.

Carousel Organ at Coolidge Park, Chattanooga, Tennessee
Carousel Organ at Coolidge Park, Chattanooga, Tennessee

Mr. Guillaum opened the top of his beautiful made-in-Germany organ and let us peer in at the scroll of music. He was even gracious enough to allow my friend Debi, my grandchildren, and me all a turn at turning the organ.

At the Organ
At the Organ

Believe me, it is much harder than it looks. It takes umph! and coordination, but it was fun. I even came home with an official organ-grinder certificate.

Don’t let anyone make you think you aren’t preparing your children for the real world. I am thankful that, because you homeschool, you have time to give your children real opportunities to meet real people who do real things to enhance the real lives of other real people in the real world.

And this I pray,
that your love may abound still more and more
in real knowledge and all discernment,
so that you may approve the things that are excellent,
in order to be sincere and blameless
until the day of Christ;
having been filled with the fruit of righteousness
which comes through Jesus Christ,
to the glory and praise of God.
Philippians 1:9-11

 

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  1. Great observation!! Real learning comes from real life!! Homeschooling provides the time and opportunity to develop curiosity about real people in a real world.