is how long my grandma lived. And so today and tomorrow we will say goodbye to her, and they will try to sum up those ninety years in an hour long service. But lucky me! I have memories that I will hold forever and important things I learned from her that have helped to shape me.
Anytime mom and dad went on vacation we stayed at grandma and grandpas. One of my earliest memories was staying there when my youngest brother Brandt was born. Grandma always cooked big meals - mostly meat and potatoes.....and her apple dumplings were awesome! She would spend hours in the kitchen getting ready for meals and she always had the little relish tray out with pickles and carrots.
(Okay, grandma, I never was a huge fan of the jello salad with tuna in it but your other recipes made up for it:))
As I got older and went to nursing school, grandma was always so proud of me....I was the third generation of nurses to go through Allen.
And she had such a loyalty to Allen Hospital, volunteering there for over 20 years. She took her role there very seriously, and everyone loved her. I remember a couple of times when she couldn't make it on her Thursday to volunteer, she would wear her volunteer jacket at home.
My co-workers called her the cookie grandma because she would always get a cookie from the cafeteria and bring it to me while I worked. Sometimes the cookie was for me and other times she specified which of my kids it was to go to.
Brad and grandma got along so well. He teased her and she loved it! He never let her live down the day we went to pick her up to take her to Shay's spelling bee and she was in her pajamas....we must have had a little miscommunication about what day the spelling bee was. So any other time we were planning to pick her up he would make sure to ask her if she was going to be in her pajamas. And he loved going to play pepper with her and her brother and sister. Even after grandma's sister went to the nursing home he went there to play cards with them a few times. Thank you Brad -- she loved you!
And her love for the great grandkids is what makes me really emotional....she just loved them so much. She was there for all their birthday parties, always with a card and a ten dollar bill. She never got irritated with them.....she just soaked them in.....and they loved her, always ready to give her a big hug and a kiss.
And I am so grateful that in her last day on this earth they were there to give her their last hug.
Amelia keeps asking when we are going to "celebrate" great grandma -- so that is what we will be doing the next two days.....complete with balloons.
"what children need most are the essentials that grandparents provide in abundance. they give unconditional love, kindness, patience, humor, comfort, lessons in life. and, most importantly, cookies." -- Rudolf Giuliani