Despite the fact that I am my own worst critic, and probably the worst critic about this song - the video I’m putting in this post is in fact one of the “top rated” songs among my family and friends. It’s a song I wrote for my sister, Jamie, as a graduation present! I know, I know, it’s kind of a cheap gift. But I really do think this was the best way to see her off as she departed from our home in Colorado and went off on a wild adventure to Penn State for a degree in architecture!

Like most siblings, Jamie and I had what I like to call ”the Spy Phase” where all we could ever think about was how we were going to stealthily snoop around the other girl’s room and find out her secret crush or anything else that could be even the slightest bit embarrassing. At one point I even convinced my parents to let me buy a “spy kit”, which it turns out was a waste of money because the red laser pointer did not, in fact, do anything even remotely useful in the complicated plot of finding out who my sisters crush was. But I will always remember one thing in particular about the Spy Phase, which I sing about in “Jamie’s Song”.

The first thing that you need to know about me before I explain this story is that I always have been, and always will be, a terrible liar. I also cry really easily, and I can’t stand conflict - yes, I was that insanely creative, sensitive, rainbows-and-bunnies-and-sunshine little girl! So you can probably imagine my reaction one night when my sister found out that I had been reading her diary earlier that day. I was a mess. I cried, begged for forgiveness and grovelled at her feet. I can imagine the little Me repeating phrases like “I understand if you hate me for the rest of your life!” or “Go ahead, Jamie! Tell mom and dad!!! Tell them to ground me for the next 20 years!” and of course the all-too-familiar: “I’m a horrible person!!!” Her reaction, much to my surprise, was to forgive me. I think I must have been too adorable to hate in that moment. She told me that she wasn’t going to tell mom and dad and that - since mom still wasn’t home from the store - we should go ahead and start the movie (Stuart Little) without her. I might have learned more about life from my sister that day than some people learn in a lifetime: what it is to forgive another person.

“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”-Ephesians 4:32

The second major memory I share, and still laugh about with my sister is something we refer to as “that one moving day!” and then *laugh hysterically*. My family was moving out of a little apartment we had stayed in for a short period of time while we were waiting for our present home to be built. We were trying to walk down the flight of stairs that lead to the front door carrying heavy boxes of books and other random junk. Well, anyone who knows me knows that I am not particularly athletic. Nore and I “buff” or agile. Actually I’m quite the opposite! So being 95 lbs at the time, carrying a box that is basically as big as I am - full of stuff, and carrying it down the stairs… Yea, not a good combination for someone like me! So long story short I fell down those stairs, the box opening and spilling various bits of Jamie’s middle school memorabilia in what seemed like slow motion, Me - flailing about, my limbs doing very unnatural things… Gooood times… Despite the fact that I was kind of shaken up, we must have laughed about it for 15 minutes straight. I’ve taught myself over the years the ability to laugh at myself - it comes with the territory of being a klutz! When we finally surveyed the wreckage, we discovered that I had broken a glass jar full of little shells - a present from her former best friend in middle school. It shattered and all the shells were all over the floor. I remember feeling so bad for ruining such a precious memory, and of course, like always, I started crying. But my sister is one of those people who knows what is really important and what isn’t. She didn’t care at all! All she did was laugh and tell me that it was just a little glass, and that we should probably sweep it up before mom or dad steps on it.

Have you ever had one of those friendships that is so natural that, even if you haven’t seen each other for years, you can just pick up where you left off? That’s what it’s like with me and Jamie. The only way I know how to describe it is the way I describe it in Jamie’s song: The more things change, they stay the same. I know that’s true now that I’ve spent an entire school year with her away from home and it hasn’t affected our relationship at all - I thank God for that all the time! (I also thank Him for Facebook and Skype and the telephone