This week was one year since my grandmother passed into eternity. She was the most amazing women I ever knew, and I miss her so much! So I wanted to write a little tribute to her today. Especially as so much of her life exemplifies what this blog is all about.
My grandma was born one year before the Great Depression began, so her earliest memories were of many of the hardships that created. Her father was a minister, and her family was completely dependent on the tithes of their congregations. Naturally, tithing went down as people had less money to give. Instead of money, people would bring baskets of eggs, or produce from their gardens, and occasionally even a freshly butchered chicken. They may not have had much, but they were always taken care of.
Despite a very difficult childhood, Grandma grew up not only resilient, but with the kindest and most generous spirit of any woman I’ve ever met. She was extremely hardworking too. My grandfather always had a weak heart, which prevented him from being able to do much of the heavy housework, so Grandma had to take the work on for him. She could reupholster furniture, garden, sew, cook, and would later go on to her earn her RN certification.
I remember Grandma saying many times how when her boys were young, she couldn’t even buy herself a pair of pantie hose because she had to make sure the boys always had enough to wear. Somehow she always managed to prepare enough food for everyone to eat, and made that food delicious. With 3 of her 4 sons being teenagers at once, that was no small feat!
She was also well known for her love of hostessing. Early in my parents’ marriage, my mom knew that if she was too tired to make dinner on a particular night, all she had to do was call Grandma up. It wouldn’t take long in the conversation for Grandma to invite them over to eat. Every time.
Grandma loved people, and loved being able to help out whenever she could. Even with such a poor upbringing, and extremely tight early marriage, her generosity knew no bounds.
I well remember my grandma and her problem solving skills. During one of her visits to my parents’ house, I woke up one morning to discover her on her hands and knees greasing the track of our stubborn sliding door! And did I mention, she was in her late 70’s!
My biggest regret in life was not getting to see her one last time. With several states between us, and no money for traveling, I only saw her twice after getting married. But I am eternally grateful that I did call her up 1 month before she died, and we got to talk about the baby I was expecting, and I learned something new about her own mother.
It’s already been a year, but I still miss her every single day, and strive to follow in her footsteps.
What are some of your favorite memories of a beloved grandparent?