It was Sunday afternoon and I found myself reminiscing of a simpler time. I find myself thinking back to a time where I had no bills to pay, no worries or no fears. Back to a time where my weekends were spent with my cousins on my grandparents farm chasing chickens or swimming in the creek (when my parents allowed us) or pretending to be the cast off of the Dukes of Hazzard. Those were the days
I was blessed in many ways growing up. One of the greatest blessings by far was having both sets of my grandparents while growing up. I was also fortunate to have a set of great-grandparents that I had the pleasure of getting to know and love. Not many people can say that. This post it in honor of all of my grandparents.
I will start with my dad’s parents. My papaw L and Mamaw S. I can’t think of any week in my childhood that these two were not involved somehow. They lived up the holler (up the road for you city folk) from us. My brother and I spend the days with them while my parents worked and after we started school my papaw would pick us up after school until my parents got home. We spent our days playing games of Canasta, that’s actually how I figured out how to count, or working in the garden, running wild in the open fields and eating gooseberries and rhubarb off the creek bank. Back then we could ride in the back of papaw’s old black Ford to the store(no seatbelt required) where he would give us a dollar to spend on whatever we liked. Usually I got a can of Dr Pepper and a candy bar and still had a few cents left over. When we would return we would help him carry the groceries up the steps and into the kitchen were my mamaw patiently waited. She always made sure to have something on the table for dinner when my parents arrived to pick us up, a few of my favorites: her steak and gravy and her homemade chili.
She gave me a love/hate relationship with scary movies. She absolutely loved to watch them but hated to watch them alone so I would stay up with her and not sleep for nights after words fearing Freddy really was going to get me. I find it funny that my children love scary stuff and I can’t bring myself to watch anything scarier than what plays on Disney Junior at Halloween time. If they only knew what I went through lol. My papaw was one of a kind. Strong and brave. He gave me a love for the outdoors and helped me shot my first gun. I lost them both before I was sixteen. But our bond will last my lifetime.
Both of my grandfathers served our country in WWII. Papaw L was and Army man while my Papaw W was a Navy man. To see the way these high paid athletes are disrespecting our flag, our national anthem and country makes me sick. I know both of them would be shaking their heads. They were proud to be Americans and proud to have served their country. Their love for our freedom has flowed throughout the generations that followed them.
My papaw W and mamaw B lived about an hour away from us. We spend our weekends there with our countless cousins on my moms side. On Saturday nights the men played cards while the lady’s chatted in the living room or watched us kids run around outside. And on Sunday morning mamaw B made sure we all made it to church. My papaw W and mamaw B gave me a love for the Bible early on in life. Some of my favorite times with papaw were our Bible talkes after I was a young adult. I remember going camping and fishing on the river. And with the arrival of spring it meant it was time to dig ramps (kind of like a wild onion) for the annual ramp dinner. My family was not rich but I never weren’t, we were blessed with something much more valuable than money.After my dad’s parents passed away and my moms parents moved to town we spent more time at their house. My mamaw B’s mom, Great Grandma W, moved in with them. Most of my memories of her come from this time. Great Grandma W was a firecracker. She could preach the Word of God and tell the funniest jokes. She and mamaw quilted many blankets and made many Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls for us as we grow up. Their house was had food one the table, you never knew who would stop by to share a meal.
My oldest daughter and son have the privilege of getting to spend time with them often. My son when he was old enough got to go on the annual hunting trip with my dad, my papaw W, and my uncle. These three men helped shape him into the young man he is today. Those hunting trips are something he will treasure forever. My daughter was my papaw’s football buddy. Not many families have five generation photos but we were blessed to be able several of them. My beautiful Great Grandma went to be with Jesus when she was 102. Just a few years ago I lost my papaw W. He was at the hunting camp with my dad, son and uncle. He passed away doing what he loved to do. My heart still aches.
A few weeks ago I was able to make a trip make home, while there I made sure to stop by and see me beautiful mamaw B. That trip she remembered me and we shared some good laughs at my brothers experience, sorry bub.
She’s all I have left and I hate being hours away. I hate that life happens and I can’t just pick up and go let I did when I was younger. I hate being an adult. How I wish I could turn back time to when I was 14 or 15 and still have them all with me. I am very Thankful to still have her.
I hope I have made them proud. I hope as they look down from heaven they say, “See that girl right there well that’s my granddaughter.” I hope I have turned out half a well as they had hoped. There’s not a day that goes by I don’t smell something or see something that reminds me of at least one of them. Both of my adopted daughters are named in someway to honor my mamaw S and mamaw B. My oldest was named in honor of my great grandma W. I hope that they carry the names given to them with their heads held high knowing just how special they are. I pray they too become strong independent women as those they are named after. I pray that all my children know just how blessed our family is. For even though my little loves are too young to remember on their own they will know who their Great grandparents and Great Great Grandma was through the stories I share. Oh how I miss you all so….
And mamaw B I will be back to see you soon, until then your Baby girl loves you keep those nurses on their toes ❤️
From our beautiful chaos to yours be sure to tell those you love just how much they mean to you. Cherish the moments for a lifetime.