I used to live out in these parts, outside of Emmaus and near Shimerville. The rolling hills and stone barns and houses still call to me. I’ve done Christmas Eve family shows here as well as worked with the preschool that uses the basement of this church many times. Tonight we gathered for a preschool open house in the sanctuary. Young families came in and most of the kids came up front. It was nice to see familiar faces among them, and they were familiar with me. I knew this would be good. When the kids start conversations with me before the show, that’s always a good sign.

There was dancing from the start, especially with the younger kids and the older kids were chiming in with animals for Down By the Bay. Some of the new, shier kids that came in late started feeling their oats and move up from the pews to join in.

I did my scarves routine that I had done with the preschool a month or so ago and it was nice to debut the material in a performance situation for the first time. It worked well in this situation. Good to know.

I spilled out the bag o’ instruments towards the end, and the kids all dance and played. The parents and the staff at the preschool ate it up. So did I. I do have the best seat in the house.

I went downstairs for ice cream sundries and sat with some of the kids. This is the part I really like. I had a great conversation with one young family of three daughters and their mom. I got the backstory about their favorite song I’m Gonna Tell and how they would sing it to each other around the house, driving their mother nuts. I said, “Way to go.” All during this banter, the youngest girl was eating her ice cream and not taking her eyes off of me. I commented to the mom that she was flirting with me. It was quite an interesting moment – that guy playing music is sitting right here with us!

I packed up with the check (again, no CD sales), glad to be part of this small rural community.