I don't know much about my grandma's early life, other than that she spent her childhood on a farm in Utah, and that she had pet sheep named Fleecey and Weecey. I've always found that to be the most endearing story, though I suspect Fleecey and Weecey met an untimely end. I got into a debate with my grandma once about the phrase "knee-high to a grasshopper," which she used when she was referring to herself as a child. "Does that mean your knees were at grasshopper height, or you were the height of a grasshopper's knee?" I asked her. I think we decided on the latter. Either way, in my mind's eye, she was an extremely tiny girl.
When I was little I spoke in a squeaky voice, and my grandma called me Mara Mouse. She bought me mouse-related things, like books and toys, and always read me my favorite mouse stories when she babysat. She also made up an entire series of tales for Sarah, Aaron, and me called "The Birdy and the Worm." The Birdy and the Worm were the main characters obviously, and we would throw plots at her, like "The Birdy and the Worm Take Karate" (I remember that one in particular). She always did the voices when we asked her to. I can't recall her ever turning down an idea.
|My grandma with her partner, Orin, and Sarah. Spring of 2012.|
|Jack with his great-grandparents.|
My grandma kept several hummingbird feeders on her patio, because she loved hummingbirds. Sometimes they would make nests outside her kitchen window and she would show us the eggs or the babies. Her favorite flowers were pansies. She had the softest skin on her hands, and her hair never went gray, even at 89. She was an amazing cook and always made it look effortless. Her lasagna recipe is the only reason I eat lasagna. For years and years she drove an old yellow Subaru with wooly seat covers. Whoever was lucky enough to ride shotgun got to help shift gears.
|Aaron, me, Grandma, and Jack in April, 2010.|
But my favorite memories are of the times my grandma got to see Jack. It was never often enough, but it made her so happy. She loved being a great-grandma, and I have no doubt that if she had lived a little longer, Jack would have remembered her with as much love as I do.
August 22, 1923 - March 5, 2013