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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

grammie

so on friday my grammie went to heaven. a few short weeks ago she was diagnosed with cancer. we knew at that point that there was a finite period of time left with her. we just didn't realize it was going to be so very small. thankfully we were able to see her monday while she was still alert and offering us the occasional smile. just a few short days later she quietly slipped from earth into heaven.

the pictures are from one of the last times i took the kids down to see her. we had no idea she was so sick. mind you she was a very private person who never wanted to be a bother to anyone so it's really anyone's guess as to how she was really doing at that point. it was a trip that we all looked forward to. i tried to get down to see her about once a month (which usually actually equated to about every 6 weeks). the kids would get so excited. they loved to call her on the phone and tell her they were coming. she always patiently listened to each of them trying hard to understand while they babbled away about anything and everything.


now please understand, as part of the not wanting to be a bother on anyone thing grammie would often tell me to stay home. the weather was too bad (even though it was just barely beginning to get cold out), the traffic might be bad (even though we were coming on a tuesday at nine in the morning), anything that might not make it perfectly easy. over time i learned how to counteract these little delay tactics of hers ... i had mia call her instead! =) grammie could never say no to mia. where as she would tell me to come the following week or so, mia could get on the phone, tell her we were coming the very next day and grammie would always say okay. always! the bond they had was so fun to watch. they both just lit up when the other walked into the room.

so here are a few of the things i will forever remember about my grammie;
*the twinkle she got in her eyes when she smiled
*how she always seemed to love us for who were were, not trying to change us even if she disagreed with you.
*her fierce love of IU basketball and her contradicting hatred for most of its coaches
*watching her help my kids fill the bird feeders that were so dear to her and a ritual we did at every visit
*playinig games at her house that my mom used to play (mouse trap, don't spill the beans, life and the whale game)
*burping contests (yep, it's true. and she always won!)
*how soft her hands always were
*the chimes from the clock in the living room
*that no matter how early you got up at grammie's she was always up ahead of you with a great smelling pot of coffee already going
*that she made my brother eric sign a contract that he would not injury himself, specifically his feet, while she came to watch us (the previous 2 times she had come resulted in ER visits for eric with injuries to his feet)
*KFC for dinner at least once when we were visiting as kids
*christmas at her house with handmade candycanes from the local candy shop, the train around the tree and the eternal one more cup of coffee that the adults always made us endure
*the random newspaper clipping that only in recent years were also accompanied by a note (before you just got the clipping wtihout explanation)
*you knew you were doing good when you were finally taller then grammie. she would stand back to back with each of us at every visit to see if we had finally achieved this milestone (mind you she was a rather short women but when you are growing up it's still a big deal!)
*that you always, always left her house with something. her love language was definately gifts.
*though she loved us fiercely and devotedly she could not bring herself to say the words very often. yet with my kids the words seemed to flow out of her effortlessly and easily.

i'm sure i could go on and on but i will end here. grammie, i miss you and i love you!

3 comments:

The Maines Family Blog said...

Natalie~
What wonderful memories of your grammie not only for you to hold close to your heart but your kids too!
I am so sorry for your loss and know that you and your family will be in my prayers!
Love you!
Alli

Kerri Hanson said...

Nat,
this is beautiful. It brought tears to my eyes as I pictured all of you. It also made me think of my own grandparents and all of my wonderful memories of them. Your kids are so wonderfully blessed to have gotten to know her and spend time with her and form those bonds. You are all in my thoughts and prayers. And know I love you all.

Love, K

Susan said...

My dear Natalie,
What an eloquent tribute to
Grams! You have captured her true essence. We all are lucky to have had her in our lives. i love you, mom