|with Clare, 2005|
Tomorrow my paternal grandmother ("my dad's mom" as Jude would say) would have turned 89. She passed away almost 6 years ago.
My grandma was a special lady, especially to her husband of 60 years, 9 children, and 28 grandchildren. I hope to be the kind of grandmother she was when I have grandchildren of my own. But right now I am thankful for the special memories I have of her.
All of her grandchildren remember her ritual hand washing performed anytime before a meal or snack was served. Grandma would take you into the bathroom to wash your hands. She filled the sink with warm sudsy water and would scrub your hands with a bar of Dove soap while you stood on the step stool. It was practically a treat.
My grandma always noticed the details. If your picture was in the local paper, you could be guaranteed it would be hanging on her refrigerator the next time you stopped by. (Most likely your name would be highlighted and your face circled.) If you had a new haircut, it was the first thing she noticed and complimented.
Many times she would take you out for such small, yet important events...haircuts, buying a new dress for an uncle's wedding, shopping for a new winter coat. (She always wanted one long enough to cover our rear ends...saying we would be warmer that way.)
My grandmother had a big heart and not just because it overflowed with love for her family and friends. She always made you feel like you were especially loved. There were many times someone would be sick with the flu or a cold, or even simply "just because" and she would drop by with a bag of goodies. Food brought over usually including a molded jello with fruit inside.
She was a strong Irish woman. My grandma raised 6 sons and I often find myself asking for her guidance when I loose patience with my one son.
My grandmother was deemed to have the "prettiest eyes" her senior year of high school. My children were lucky to inherit that trait from her.
I know her eyes are smiling down on us today.