Thursday, November 05, 2009

Remembering a Beautiful Woman, A Grand Lady

My Grandmother, whom you've read about and seen pictured here numerous times, passed away last Sunday afternoon. You may remember that she turned 90 in March.

My God, she was fun and funny.

I'm so glad that Brian got to see her at Christmas, last year; though he couldn't see her much over the last couple of years, he adored her.

And my heart melts at some of my memories. She was always, always, her children's mother:

And Our Grandmother.

Memories flood me.
  • As kids, we'd spend a week at a time in her country home. Fresh air, gardening, canning, and digging potatoes ensued.
  • No TV!
  • My sister and I would spend hours—hours!—in her apple tree. It was a great old tree that you could just lie back in, like a cheetah.
  • We once spent a couple of hours in that tree with our eyes closed and ears plugged as Grandma & uncles killed what seemed like 100 chickens. They really do run around after you cut off their heads! We had no idea. We were mortified! Traumatized! Simply appalled!
  • 1000s of hands of Gin Rummy and Crazy 8s.
  • Rum Cake—my recipe is hers, and a winner every time.
  • The smell of coffee brewing long before the sun came up.
  • Her laugh—she'd take off laughing and I'd stop and listen to it, when I was 12 years old, and when I was 45. I wanted to memorize it— she laughed with her heart and her gut.
  • Her no B.S. stance, no matter what the situation. Grandma didn't pull punches. I still laugh at her running over my uncle's foot with her wheelchair about a year ago, and saying "well, if a person doesn't have sense enough to get out of the way, it's his own fault."
I remember her almost when she was at the age I am now. I remember her strong and young, and bold and energetic.

And I remember her also, softer, aged, sentimental and lovely.

I love all that she was, and I feel fortunate to have had this lady in my life for so many years. She will remain in my heart forever.


  1. Sorry for your loss. Hopefully next year is a lot better for you.

  2. What a lovely post. So sorry for your loss but so nice to hear all about her. Hugs for you and yours xx

  3. What a beautiful tribute Lori. You have all my sympathy.

  4. Marinemom6:57 AM

    She does sound like a great lady and from what you describe, I think you are very much like her. I'm sorry for your loss Lori, but you are strong like her and full of life and laughter. Keep your chin up and when it's down, let yourself cry. It's ok.

  5. Oh, I'm so very sorry you lost your grandma. I remember those photos from her birthday. Your memories are wonderful (and I love that line about getting out of the way of the wheelchair!).

  6. What a lovely tribute to a wonderful woman. May we all be remembered so fondly. I'd like to be remembered for laughing all the time. I enjoyed reading your list of memories, Lori. I'm very sorry to hear of her passing. I think it's time 2009 was over - this has been an unbelievably rough year for you. ((hug))

  7. I'm so sorry to hear about your grandma. :( It makes me think about when my grandma passed away... I had many of the same memories of her as you of yours.

  8. She sounds like a truly GRAND lady. I hope you were ready for this one.

  9. Anonymous6:28 AM

    here i am crying with you again lori. i'm so sorry about 'grandma'.feel my hugs and blessings for you. cousin debbie

  10. What wonderful memories!

  11. condolences. what a special tribute to your grandmother

  12. I love this post!

    I was struck by your description of your grandma's laugh - I love that you tried to memorize it.

    AND I think you laugh the same way (when you're reeeeeally laughing)! You're sooo cute!

  13. Anonymous5:52 PM

    Oh, I'm so sad to hear of your grandma's passing. [Note to the gods: Lori has had enough negative stuff on her plate for the next 20 years or so, puhlease] This is a poignant tribute to her. I sent it to my sister, Kris, who used to work with her. You are in my prayers. Kaye

  14. I am sorry for your loss of such a wonderful lady. Your words brought back memories of my own mom and grandma.

  15. I am so sorry to hear this Lori. Your family has been through so much in such a short period of time. I still, coming up on four (or is it five?) years after losing my grandmother, find myself surprising caught off guard my memories of time spent with her. I was lucky to have had much of it over the years. Sometimes I can even still smell her perfume I thinkg...

    Sending you virtual (((HUGs))).


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