Monday, June 9, 2008

Memories of my Grandma Hazel

I really don't want to be a downer to anyone, but there is something that I feel I just have to write about. It has absolutely nothing to do with what I normally discuss. While I was in the Netherlands, my 85 year-old great grandmother died. When most people discuss their great grandmother she is often a woman that they have heard stories about, remember vaguely from distant memories of childhood, or have never met.

Grandma Hazel was much different than that.

She attended weddings, graduations, family reunions, Sunday get-togethers, special anniversaries, and anything else that MIGHT have a dance. She did all of these things until just a few months before she passed away. Her obituary noted over 100 living descendants, and a slideshow at the funeral had pictures of her with just about all of us at various points in our lives. Among the MANY pictures was a five generation shot that included Sophie, and it made the sting of losing my Grandma and my Granny (my mother's mother) even more deep.

So, what do I remember about Grandma? Here are a few things that really stick out:
  • I remember playing at the playground near her house with Amanda and my cousins Shane and Freddie. The funny thing is that Adam is missing from those memories of that playground for some reason.

  • I don't recall a single time that I saw Grandma without a smile. I know for a fact there were times when she was unhappy and faced really hard times (she was widowed in 1962), but I don't think that you could ever have seen that from her disposition with her grandkids.

  • I remember that Grandma loved the Independence Day celebrations at the Vandervoort Picnic Grounds. Mainly, she loved to dance and there were always at least a couple of dances during the 4th of July week.

  • I remember that I was taller than Grandma in about the 5th grade. I am not exceptionally tall, but Grandma was probably 5 feet tall when she wore her high heels.
There are so many more memories, but rather than continue down Memory Lane, I guess I'll just leave it at that. I will miss Grandma Hazel a great deal, and I am pretty sure that over the next few years as we add children, nieces, and nephews to our family that I will fully realize how much she was a part of all our lives.


Anonymous said...

You're right, I remember that about her - she was ALWAYS smiling. That's saying something, too, because we all know that life can be pretty un-smiley at times. To be able to see the joy in everything, in every moment God gives, well, that's something pretty special.

Love you,

Lora Lee said...

You were able to put down what I have been trying to express. It is hard for people to understand how important a great-grandmother could be. How close everyone was to her. I never did get to be taller than her, and I think of her when all the kids now measure up to me, how our goal was to be taller than Grandma Hazel.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...