Friday, July 09, 2010

Where We've Been

My Grandma Mary passed away last week. She had surgery for a broken hip and her body just couldn't recover from the trauma. She was an amazing grandmother and a super classy lady. I learned a lot from her and will always remember her fondly. We lived less than a mile from my grandparents when we were kids and spent a lot of time at their house (when I was younger it was for the cable tv, when I was older it was for the boxed wine....) and some of my very favorite memories involve my Grandma.

Norah and I flew to El Paso for the services and to be there for my grandfather on the Fourth of July (BVZ was unable to come because of the cost of tickets and work obligations). Our generous and well connected friend BA was able to score us a pair of 'buddy tickets' on Southwest, which saved us well over $1k on last minute flights. We owe her big. The only drawback was that we had a long layover in Phoenix.

The trip didn't get off to a very good start. We flew out of San Jose and while we waited to board I got Norah a Jamba Juice. She insisted upon carrying it while we walked back to the gate and (you can see where this is going), promptly tripped and fell flat on both her face and her juice. I thought she really hurt herself so I immediately scooped her up, which of course, doused me in strawberry juice as well. People around us were so kind. One person went to the bathroom for paper towels, another called someone to clean up the crime scene, and another went back and got her another smoothie! Because I am such a good mom the 'spare' clothes I had in the diaper bag was a 9 month outfit (doh!) and so we both traveled the next 6 hours a sticky, pink mess.

This doesn't even show half of the stain on her shirt...

The best part was that my cousin Courtney and her husband were on our flight to Phoenix. They had been on vacation in Carmel and Monterrey, so it was awesome to get to sit with them and catch up (it had been years). We had a 3 hour lay over in Phoenix. That's a long time. Thank goodness for ice cream cones and the portable DVD player (if I never watch Toy Story again it will be too soon).

We got to El Paso and spent the next day with my grandfather and the rest of the family. It was really sad. But at the same time it was REALLY awesome to see my aunts and uncles and cousins. The last time we all had seen each other was 4 years ago at my grandparents' 60th wedding anniversary party. Despite the sad circumstances we had a really nice time. They are a bunch of good eggs. It was really fun to see all of the kids and share our favorite inappropriate stories. I forgot my camera and so didn't take any pictures, but you can see a fabulous recap by my cousin Mare here.
Tuesday was the funeral. I thought Norah looked really sweet.

She was such a trooper despite the fact that it was over 100 degrees and she hadn't napped in 3 days. I spoke at the funeral and was very worried that she was going to freak out when I went up to the front. As soon as the service began she started pointing to things and saying 'Mommy, what's THIS, Mommy what's THAT?' (not in an inside voice either!) and so Megan and Uncle Mark took her to another room at the church. I thought they would just run around, but come to find out, 5 minutes after they went in there, she set Bear down on the floor, lay on top of him and promptly passed out (Bear needs a serious de-contamination, by the way. He's been dragged along the floors of multiple airports, restaurants, stores, and hotels. She's way more attached to him than ever since we've been away from home, though, and so I haven't been able to pry him out of her grip long enough to even wash him. I keep telling myself-it's all about the antibodies!)
By far, Norah's best time was spent relaxing at the hotel watching movies with her cousins.

My grandparents were together for over 65 years. I can't imagine living with BVZ for 65 years and I like him more than anyone else I know.


JAMS' HOUSE said...

I’m so sorry to hear of your loss. I’m glad you could be with your family.

k-dog studios said...

it's so nice that you have such wonderful memories of your grandmother. Now they will become even more precious. I hope your grandfather has family around to keep him company - I can't imagine losing someone you've spent 65+ years with.

Pretty as the Morning said...

It was good to see you again and to meet Miss Norah, even under the circumstances. (This is Cara by the way!)

Pretty as the Morning said...

And I agree about 65 year of marriage--Tim and I have talked about that alot. It just amazes us.

Maryellen said...

It's definitely weird Grandma is gone. I'm still in the stage where I have to remind myself that it's true.

I loved this post. I also loved getting to witness the love that the new generation of cousins have for each other. It's so sweet.