Grandmothers and Gooseberry

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School started back today for us.  The hurricane may have littered our yards and sadly taken a few trees, but we fared good, compared to our neighbors, on the coast.  

The children came back with all sorts of tales of the storm . . .and the clean up.  I was complaining because my back was “out” and everyone had either stepped in fire ants, gotten scratched or had blisters from working.  Still, I can not imagine the destruction that some folks or dealing with . . or the loss. 

The good news is that people are helping.  A building supply store is offering discounts on the items needed to rebuild.  Civic groups and Churches are sending meals and many, many people are making all sorts of donations.  Folks are doing what they can to ease the suffering . . .and that means so  very much.  It is a silver lining and a testimony, that there is goodness in the world.

Brynn had her actual birthday on Tuesday.  I thought of her all day and wondered how we ever got along without her.  I gave her a music box, that plays “You Are My Sunshine”.  The first ginger lily of the season, bloomed on her birthday and I couldn’t help but notice.  

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Brants’ little son, should be here any day now.  When the phone rings, there is a scurry to answer it.  Sydney remains as calm as can be.  I do hope the baby inherits her perpetual sense of peace.  There is a full moon this weekend-and apparently it is a rare one.  Though science does not support the notion, that a full moon has any thing to do with impending births. the prospect is exciting. 

I remember the days before I became “Honeybee”.  Truthfully, I was unsure how to be a grandmother.  Everyone said it was wonderful and many told me, I would need to  adjust my budget , for I would want to buy everything available for the modern child.  I would also tolerate poor behavior, as it was not my problem, after all  .  . . and worst of all, I would love the grandchildren more than my own children!  This was not my nature at all, and so I was convinced I just would not get it right.  Well, none of that happened.  What did happen was that I found a new kind of love.   . .a realm I did not know existed.  Being a grandmother is “everything its’ cracked up to be”.  And there is more  good news, it happens quite naturally.  You love them because they were born.  It is an uncomplicated, pure affair

By the time, you are a grandmother, you know what matters-what lasts for all times. The passing of many years, now pays off, for because of that, there are stories to tell. We will celebrate at the drop of a hat and sing praises of our grandchildren, “til the cows come home”.   Grandchildren renew our strength . . .and we are not scared to use it.  We stand in the shadows ready to pounce at the slightest inkling that we are needed.  The world and its’ cares, are lost on grandparents . . .all because we are head over heels and hopelessly smitten with those grandchildren.

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I remember my own grandmothers with great fondness.  My maternal grandmother was right next door.  she kept Baby Ruth bars in the”Kelvinator”and gingersnaps in the cupboard.  She gave me coffee on occasion, diluted with  canned milk, in a china tea cup.  This was a great privilege, as children ought not to drink coffee.  She told stories which were full of tragedy and promised to buy me a monkey, when she got rich.   I took it for granted, that she loved me better than any one else in the world, for that is how she made me feel.   I was not a pretty child with my reddish hair and freckles . . .and skinny, but I felt beautiful in her presence . . .and she convinced me I was bright, too.  She died suddenly when I was ten years old, now fifty years ago, yet I can still remember the sound of her voice.  In those short years, Grandmama loved me enough to last  a lifetime.

 

My paternal grandmother lived til ninety three.  She was as sweet and tender a spirit as I have ever known.  She taught me to love flowers and birds . . .and to pray about everything.  She had a hard life, but she was not bitter about it.  She felt blessed.  She loved animals, wild and tame  -and mimosa trees.  She was generous and she was the least judgmental person I have ever known.  I am so thankful that all of my children, got to know her and know her well. 

It is no wonder that I take the role of a grandmother, or in my case, “a Honeybee” so seriously. 

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Every day of the week was clear and full of hot sunshine. With my back out, the house and yard were mostly untouched.  I have two projects going on in the house, which are two ceilings now.  The laundry room had several loose tiles too, and so I “peeked” beneath to find more beautiful bead board.  At least, I will not even have to paint it, for it is a lovely shade of green.  I just can not get on a ladder now.  I can barely get in the car, so both rooms are about half done and quite unsightly.  The piles of branches in the yard are right where I left them, so the territory is as awful as the house.  Kyle is living on his own now, and Christian works long, odd hours and is barely awake for supper. That leaves it to me and the boxer.  The boxer doesn’t let it bother him and so neither do I.  

I believe now, that flexibility is crucial to a happy life -or at least it has been for me.  I make plans, like everyone else, but things seldom fall into  the place, I had designated.  Expectations require a lot of energy and if you “set your heart on it” . ..well, there is always the chance of unnecessary disappointment.  Many many times, things have not worked out as I expected and as it turns out, all was well in the end, anyway . . .and often better, that I could have imagined.  I still, faithfully plan supper and what I am wearing to work, the night before.  . .but lifes’ plans are a different story.  When situations do not work out as I had thought would be best, these days,  I am reminded that I am not in control, and I am relieved, for I know my ideas were wrong.  It has only taken my lifetime and A LOT of gooseberry nets to learn this.

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Moving slowly, has its’ advantages, I am finding out.  Down the garden path, I notice the floss flowers are setting new records, for they are everywhere!  The chives have gotten a second-wind and are blooming again.  They are a pretty sight and so full of flavor.   Now and then, I catch a glimpse of a golden leaf floating to its’ destiny.  They seem to dance  as they fall-a grand finale to their season.

I do not mind time, the way nature tells it. I couldn’t argue with a full moon or a sunrise or a ginger lily for – “love or money”.   I can not complain with mornings bathed in silver fog nor with  golden fields .  I have no quarrel with the lowly  and aggressive , swamp flowers, for they are as bright a yellow as I know of.  These are the “bells and whistles” in nature. Time is ushered in, gently . . .in the most beautiful manner . . .and invites everyone to celebrate.

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17 thoughts on “Grandmothers and Gooseberry

  1. What an immensely beautiful testimony to grandparenting. I’m so sorry about your back. Back pain is up there with tooth pain in the terrible seriousness of it. 😥 I said a prayer for you. Yes. I love, Michele, that you call us, through your thoughts, to just live in THIS moment. We are all in different seasons and we need to remember that and take each thing as it comes. One foot in front of the other is the way to live this life. Being present and calmly (or not so calmly in my case, HA!) enjoying and weathering the NOW.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. thank you Amy! I hope all is well with you and your household. I am just doing the best I can with life and am glad when something is learned that I can share. I am sure that you do well with living in the moment. You have to. You are making the most of life and I really think of you often.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hope you’re feeling better soon, Michele 🙏🏻 I’ve had my back go out and it was a frustrating time cause I couldn’t do much. Sometimes the good Lord forces us to slow down. I can’t wait to see pictures of the new grand baby ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Michele, so sorry about your back! Hope you are on the mend, soon. I, too, was blessed by my maternal grandmother. As a music teacher she instilled her love of music in us. Every week she drove from Norfolk to Va. Beach to give us piano lessons (she also came if we were sick, always with ginger ale & ice cream!) When she died (I was 10) Mama used the legacy from Grandmama’s house to buy the 5 of us kids instruments. I still have my Gemeinhardt flute – and my oldest sis is a piano teacher (with 30+ students every week!) 🎶🌟💜🌟🎶

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  4. A father looks back on his years when his children are grown, and there is no harsher critic of his parenting. The immaturity of a young father, the mistakes we made, all those things in retrospect we could have done better. There is no going back to fix the past.
    There is now and tomorrow, however, and a pack of grandkids. A chance to do better this time.
    It’s not so much for me as it is the grandchildren, and through them, my own children.
    For them to see in my actions the kind of man I always wanted to be when I didn’t know how.
    For them to see that I humbly admit my errors and shortcomings.
    For them to have, finally and vicariously, the father I would wish for them.

    All my best,

    Paz

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My sentiments exactly. Youth does have its’ shortcomings-besides, we are gathering too when our kids are young. We are establishing careers too. Well, a lot is going on. I have no doubt that you did a lot of things right. The kids turned out fine despite my lack of experience. Prayers were said fervently, and I believe :Love does cover a multitude of sins” after all! Haha! I have no doubt that your kids had a beautiful childhood-for your soul shows up in one sweet light! thank you always, your friend, Michele

      Liked by 1 person

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