Wednesday, March 12, 2014

The week when I felt a lot!

Charlotte’s birthday has really morphed from an emotional day to a day of celebration with our family—which is as it should be, I guess, seeing how it’s been 13 years and when it happened we could have never seen now.   Thirteen years since time started for us…BC & AC (before Charlotte/after Charlotte). 073
IMG_1917IMG_1920IMG_1921IMG_1923IMG_1924IMG_1926We continued our tradition of going to her grave and releasing balloons, although last year the kids each started keeping a balloon to tie on their bedpost.  Charlotte would have endorsed that. 
After which we took the Governor's reading challenge coupons to Chuckarama!  The kids ate their fill of fries, fish crackers, ice cream and Icees.  It’s been a while since I’ve been to a buffet and, well, pregnant, I broke my rule of no salad (because I can eat salad anytime and all salad bars are the same as my high school cafeteria with fake bacon bits and sunflower seeds so why waste precious stomach space on baby corn and ranch?)  It turned out I had been craving greens and crunch & being able to munch on something that is not necessarily filling, I ate one of everything from the salad bar.  One crouton, one kidney bean, even one pinch of hardboiled egg! And then of course a plate of protein…one meatball, chicken leg, slice of roast, ham, turkey, fried shrimp, etc.  A very awesome buffet experience finished off with a root beer float, as always.  IMG_1931
My beloved grandpa Allen died on Tuesday.       grandpa militaryWhen we celebrated his 90th birthday last fall I shared with him this endearing ditty from my childhood.
My sister and I were staying with them (we were young, like 7 & 8, or maybe younger) and grandma was cooking a casserole for dinner.  Early in the afternoon my grandpa took us to his office at BYU and we found a drawer of chocolate bars.  We helped ourselves.  We stopped by a bakery and picked up a dozen turnovers I think? we had one of those too.  He had promised ice cream so we stopped at Baskin Robins on the way home.  When we got home it was casserole time and Vanessa and I couldn’t touch it.  Grandma asked in only the grandma tone of love and scold for Grandpa that she had, “Les, what did you do to these girls?”  He was of course eating dinner and thought nothing of the progressive dinner appetizers we had consumed.  When I related the story to him at the birthday, he thanked me for the memory, since he didn’t have one left.  20130830_200548At the funeral my super intelligent brain uncle talked about how brilliant and humble Grandpa was.  How at the end when the dementia took away everything in his brain, what was left was his superfluous gratitude fueled by his humility.  At the end everything was “just so wonderful”!
At the funeral (Allen family reunion) I chatted with many of my cousins.  We all laughed how he made us each feel like we were his very favorite.  My grandma passed away 3 years ago and I was so very sad to see him alone, so the best thing about the last week is that he’s with her now, but at the grave site I felt the emotional release that they’re both gone!  I’m sure the pregnancy hormones and so many other emotions, that come with being in family units and how deeply we can feel, brought on the waterworks.  I really loved them both.  pallbearers
More memories:
  • Remember how he spoke at Charlotte’s funeral and how that talk was healing and hopeful? 
  • I was in the MTC (learning Portuguese and missionary work) and they were there serving in a branch presidency for senior couples.  My grandpa would hand off my grandma to me and my companion every week for the women’s meetings and we’d sit with both of them for the large general authority talks.   
  • He took me fishing one Friday after one of my weeks of being a camp counselor at Oakcrest complete with take out deli sandwiches! I fell asleep on the drive home.
  • He had a famous camp song about Mr. Mr. Jonny Rebeck and his sausage machine that always made me laugh.
  • They recuperated me after my appendix surgery in 5th grade. I stayed with them for two weeks with unlimited cold cereal, ice cream, and I Love Lucy reruns.
  • Trips to Albuquerque New Mexico to visit cousins. A root beer snow cone at 4 corners!
In other news, Donna came for lunch and helped me hang, haul and hike.  She’s super woman!  The park is the perfect backdrop for super slide boy and Anna girl!IMG_1933IMG_1934IMG_1935
Amber came for a visit and made us the best dark chocolate chunk cookie bars ever!  Thanks Amber.
We celebrated Donna’s birthday with Sharon flying in and hoagies and a snickers bar cake from Paul and Stephanie.

We hosted the Suttons for the funeral and this house can accommodate guests!  12 people on floor 2, 2 people on floor 1! Clearly I’ve been reading Bears on Wheels a bit much. 

James put up a mailbox and now we get mail!  A red one with a gold flag!  I ordered if from Amazon.  It came UPS.photoI had my first non stress test for this pregnancy.  Normal fluid, normal movement, proper heart accelerations and recovery.  Miracle!  The Dr. also scheduled an induction for April 2nd. 
“What are you doing on April 2nd?”
“Oh me? I’ll be having a baby!  Isn’t that just so wonderful?”


Sharon Thacker said...

What great memories of Grandpa!

Rachel Allen DeBuck said...

I loved hearing about your celebration for Charlotte. The balloons are a great idea - I might steal it as we have never come up with something that we like.
It was a very emotional day, wasn't it. I"m so happy for our wonderful grandparents!

Jennifer said...

I remember your Grandpa's talk. He seems like such a sweet man, and I love the story about him being nonplussed from all your pre-dinner snacks. :) What a week for you! I hope your sadness at his loss can be tempered by thinking of all the funny things your grandma will say in greeting him.

Jennifer said...

I remember your Grandpa's talk. He seems like such a sweet man, and I love the story about him being nonplussed from all your pre-dinner snacks. :) What a week for you! I hope your sadness at his loss can be tempered by thinking of all the funny things your grandma will say in greeting him.