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Friday, June 12, 2009

I Feel Fine

When Edna found out she had to have knee surgery, she began the usual round of pre-op preparations--with one big difference! Most people do not include a ukulele band in their pre-op planning. Post-surgery rehab was part of the treatment. When she went to make arrangements for a three-week stay at a nearby facility, she immediately had them schedule the YesterUkes to perform while she would be there for physical therapy.

But she approached her rehab like she does everything else. Full speed ahead! And Edna was discharged a little early, the day before the Yesterukes came to play. But she came back the next morning, dressed in the official blue shirt, ukulele in hand, to help entertain residents she had said goodbye to the day before.

Many residents, with more limitations than our Edna, wheeled into the dining room for the morning program. Others pushed walkers in, looking for a seat. Many family members were there visiting. Staff members also joined the group. The dining room is just across the hall from the therapy room. so people continued to wander in, when they heard music as they left their therapy session. The YesterUkes were in fine form for this excellent audience. It's always easier to play well when listeners respond to the songs. There was even a wheelchair dance during one song. We played jazz standards, some rockin' songs from the 50s, and ended with a gospel favorite.

An email we received after the program said,
"Hey, I sure am glad I came to hear the YesterUkes today. No wonder you are being asked to go all over the place to entertain. It amazed me to watch some of the sad old faces come alive and sing along."
We try hard to present a fun program that everyone can participate in. We think we achieved that today. In great part because we were all delighted to have Edna back with us!


  1. That's my grandmother!


  2. God bless you all, your blog made me laugh and even cry a bit with joy! I love my little herd of uke "kids" and they have brought joy and music back into my life! My hands have had a hard life and even at only 52 there is arthritis, but I play these little guys (play is relative with me) with great joy, and they are helping to strengthen and loosen up tight joints. I am re-learning music theory and better even the second time around than over a decade ago on my classical guitars. Thanks for the encouragement. I am looking forward to showing this blog and it's fine example of gratitude and kindness to others that you have, and all of you "playing it forward" to my hubby. I just got him a vintage bari on eBay for a "song" and it's a beauty, I have given him two lessons but he's been ignoring it since. I asked him if I should list it again now that I have it all cleaned up and slick and sell it for a profit, and he said not yet. I hope to get him to noodle around with it, he has a natural knack for rhythm instruments and the uke lends itself to that too. I like to pick as well.

    I wish when my Gram was in a nursing home that she could have had people like you come to play, it would have made her whole week!

    Many many blessings to all of you, you all just ROCK! :D