Thursday, June 19, 2014

11 years

This is by no means a "pity" post. More like a tribute where I can remember all of the details years from now. It's long, you've been warned! 
11 years ago. June 19, 2003, is a day I remember so vividly. Almost down to what I was wearing. I was getting ready for my last day of 4th grade, and my dad called to tell me that the surgeries didn't work and my grandmom had passed away in the middle of the night. Trying to wrap my brain around the whole concept that she wasn't going to be at the shore house the next time we visited was impossible. To this day it's still impossible to believe that she's really gone. 

It seems like just yesterday we were turning on to New Brunswick Ave, pulling in the driveway, and running into the house to greet my grandparents who were sitting on the porch. Grandmom on the couch, Grandpa in the recliner. 

Waking up to the smell of burnt coffee from my grandpa boiling in in the famous pot on the stove. To this day I don't know how he could stomach the taste of it. We all refrained from drinking as grandmom would make us a fresh pot. English muffin with crunchy peanut butter and a glass of ice cold milk was my breakfast staple. Hot oatmeal with fruit for grandmom. If it was Saturday, cleaning and laundry were a given. Hanging the clothes on the line to dry was by far my favorite chore to help with. Baking cookies every week for my grandfather was also on the to-do list. He preferred chocolate chip, but sometimes we liked change it up and give him a little variety. Trips to Ben Franklin 5 & 10 after lunch was a treat. After the chores were done, it was off to the beach we went! Seven houses from the beach made the "dreaded walk" that much easier. Once we hit the sand, I was off- to the water I went! Lazy beach days made up my childhood summers. But coming home just in time to greet the guys before they came in from fishing was a must. Dinner was being prepared as the men talked about their day aboard Miss Margie
After dinner and dishes were done, sandwiches were packed for the next day of fishing. One pb&j with butter (yes, you read that right and yes, it sounds gross! haha) and one ham and cheese for dad. Two ham and cheese sandwiches for grandpop. All wrapped in wax paper. Grandmom and I were pro's and the sandwiches were made in no time. Watching a western movie was a given for grandpop while grandmom read one of her novels. Lights were out at 10-no excuses. Falling asleep to the sound of waves was beyond heaven. No alarm clock was needed, the seagulls did the job of waking me up bright and early! And just like that, our day would start all over again. 
Grandmom and her girls
My grandmom was a very simple, very plain woman. She didn't have the most stunning wedding band, designer clothes or drive the fanciest car, in fact she didn't even have her license. Her family- husband, sons, and grandchildren meant the most to her. Having us around was gold to her. She married my grandfather when she was 16, he was 18. She could cross-stitch, sew, and bake like no one's business. 

One of my most favorite memories was my grandmom's birthday when I was 5. Being the only woman in the house, and the only girl sibling, my grandmom was never able to be pampered. She had also never had an ice cream cake in her lifetime. Per tradition in their house, one of the women always made a homemade cake for the birthday celebration. Well, that particular birthday, we decided to get her a Minnie Mouse ice cream cake! In the heat of July, it was also the best way to cool off. Girly and the perfect way to pamper her a little! She was tickled. So many smiles! Her face says what no words could do justice. 

It often crosses my mind to think how lucky people are who still have their grandparents around. To have them to dance with at their wedding, or better yet, see their great-grandbabies be born. I wish I had asked my grandmom more about our family history and every question I ever had. But being a little girl, you never think your grandparents are going to get taken away from you at such a young age. I didn't even realize how much I took it for granted. If your grandparents are still living- call them on the phone, take them out to lunch, give them a hug and a kiss- hold them tight! That's what I miss the most! xoxo

"It really sinks in, you know, when I see it in stone/ Cause you went away/ How dare you?/ I miss you/ They say I'll be OK/ But I'm not ever going to get over you" Thank you Miranda Lambert for writing a beautiful song that fits perfectly into words and says what I couldn't. 


  1. I know how you feel. This post really hit home for me. I lost my grandmother back in October and it still doesn't seem real to me sometimes. I miss her more than I ever thought I would.

  2. My grandpa died almost six years ago and I still miss him terribly. Like you do with your grandmother, though, I have lots of wonderful memories of him, which is most important!


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