Saturday, November 13, 2010

Chrissie's Great-Grandma Has Joined Her in Heaven

Today was the funeral of my Nana, who went to Heaven on November 10, 2010 (on Meribeth's Gotcha Day).  My Nana had Alzheimer's for the last 10 years of her life, which was such a sad thing, a disease I wish they'd find a cure for FAST.  I wish that my children would have been able to get to know my Nana since she was such a loving, kind, generous grandma; the kind of grandma every grandchild should get to experience.

Four of the grandkids shared memories at the funeral.  It was a special time with many laughs shared.  I wish that everyone out there could be blessed with a grandma like my Nana.  She was the type of person who somehow made everyone feel treasured.  She had the love languages pinned down before that was even a buzz word.  She showed love in each person's unique love language, and as her grandchild, there was never a time when I felt like she was too busy to spend time with me.

Every summer, my Nana would invite all five of her grandkids to stay with her in San Antonio for an entire week.  It was like grandma's summer camp.  Sometimes all five of us would go together, and sometimes we'd split it into smaller groups.  No matter who attended which week, our Nana always went all out to make us feel special.  She would prepare each of our favorite meals, she would give us "sweet coffee" (as kids this was a HUGE deal, but it was really about 1/5 coffee, 3/5 cream and another 1/5 sugar...yum!), and she always had yummy desserts and candy for each of us.  She made the yummiest German sweet rice ever and her creamed corn was better than Rudy's BBQ (for you Texans!).

On top of spoiling us with delicious food at every meal, Nana would take us to do all kinds of fun things.  She loved garage sales and thrift stores, and she'd take her grandkids along and wheel and deal for us so we always came home with our pockets full of little treasures.  She'd take us roller skating, to amusement parks, to water parks (Schlitterbahn!), and to traditional parks to play on the tall slides and big swings.  She'd take us on walks around her neighborhood, she'd play cards and games with us, and she'd sit in a lawn chair and watch us play sports in her back yard while she cracked pecans and visited.  She loved to talk and visit.  She could talk for hours, and we loved it.

It was always fun going to Nana's house (I think we went atleast once a month to visit) because Nana always had a stash of goods for us to dig through.  She'd find out what brand of clothing was our favorite, then she'd peruse the thrift store where she volunteered and buy us name-brand clothing at really great prices.  Each time we visited, we'd get to sort through the piles of treasures and select anything we wanted, as long as another grandkid hadn't claimed it first.  (So, it was always a race to get to the back room where the treasures were stored so that we could stake our claim before someone else got to it!)

More than anything, I feel so blessed to have had a grandma who made me feel like the most treasured granddaughter in the world.  Even when I made poor choices, she would find a way to address it yet encourage me to do better without making me feel like a failure.  She loved unconditionally, and she expected nothing in return.  She always made her grandkids feel loved, cherished, treasured, regardless of our abilities or performance. 

One day I hope to be a grandma just like my Nana.  And I'm so glad that Chrissie now has her great-grandma in Heaven to eat brownies together.  Nana made the best chocolate iced brownies.  YUM!  Chrissie, be sure to lick the bowl, girlfriend, and Nana, give Chrissie BIG HUGS for us!  We can't wait to spend eternity with y'all!

We ate at Bill Miller BBQ after the funeral because that was Nana's favorite restaurant.  She especially loved their pecan pie, so most of us had slice in memory of Nana.  (This is the best photo we got of our family...Asher was sighing as he cocked his head back (probably something along the lines of not another photo!) and Parker isn't in the photo, but I thought I'd post it anyway.)

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