Thursday, March 17, 2011

On this day...

My Grandpa and me...
It was my fourteenth St. Patrick’s Day and although early, the morning was a flurry of activity when the phone on the corner slab interrupted the schedule. My grandpa had had a heart attack. There was that moment in time when no one was certain of what to do, so we stood glancing at each other in the hallway; the news reverberating in our head.


My brother Tom corralled my sister and me as we continued to get ready for school. However, as we stepped on the bus, he came rushing from the garage to gather us and to deliver the news; my grandpa had died.

My mom was close to her parents and fond memories took hold and never let go. He and my grandma; lived on a vast farm with a multitude of animals and infinite fields. The old brick farm house was situated on top of a hill which availed itself to a fantastic sledding arena as long as you dodged the barb wire fences and the rickety mail box post and oh yeah, watch out for the creek; an abundance of sledding excursions were ruined there!

I depleted my childhood at my grandparent’s farm riding on tractors, playing in the barns, swinging on the rope in the hay loft and of course picking up buckeyes. I’d go for walks with my grandpa through the meadows as his words relayed his favorite flower; the Queen Anne’s lace only as I plucked one and passed it to him.

Our time was exceptional as he was an extraordinary man. In addition to the farm he worked for the railroad and his easy joyous attitude on life amused grandkids galore. A white and coffee basset hound was his constant companion and the mysterious all black cat was his lap cohort. He permitted Yippy and Perfect to lick his supper dishes sparkling and teased the tableware no longer needed washing as they had been properly cleaned.

I approach this St. Patrick’s Day, as I do each- with thoughtfulness, reflection and remembrance of my grandpa. I see his smile, I hear his words, I feel his touch and recognize that on a given day, we will be reunited.



May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
...May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

Happy St. Patty's Day!

56 comments:

Bossy Betty said...

Such a beautiful tribute to a very special man. I enjoyed this very much....

From the Kitchen said...

What a lovely memory of your grandfather.

Best,
Bonnie

kenju said...

I enjoyed it too. My great-grandfather meant more to me than either of my grandfathers, and I miss him still.

texwisgirl said...

How sweet. Yippy and Perfect made me smile...

A Rural Journal said...

Love the fact you have so many fond memories of your Grandpa. I really didn't know either of mine due to age and geography.

Daisy said...

This is a lovely tribute to your grandpa, Tracy. I love the picture. Thank you for sharing this memory. I never knew either of my grandfathers. One died long before I was born, and the other died when I was just a year old. Happy St. Patrick's day to you. :)

Ginny said...

What wonderful memories you have of your grandpa! I feel I've come to know him a bit from your short insight into his personality! You will, indeed, be reunted.

Courtney said...

Lovely heartfelt post of remembrance!! Aren't grandparents wonderful!! Mine were.
Courtney

Marydon said...

What a heart warming tribute to your Grandfather, Tracy. Melted my heart, brought a wet tear ...

Happy St. PAddy's Day ~
TTFN ~
Marydon

From the Kitchen said...

Tracy: Thought I'd answer your questions here. No, I've never posted a recipe that I didn't like because there are enough that I do like. I get my recipes from family, friends, magazines and my hundreds of cookbooks. I taught cooking classes and directed a cooking school in Charleston, S.C. and many of the recipes come from there. I am always modifying recipes and trying new things. I am an adventurous cook who loves trying new ways of putting things together and trying new cuisines. I never want to be bored or bore at my table. I rarely "meet" an ingredient that I don't like. My husband and children have always been my biggest fans and I'm happy to say that they, too, are happy cooks and diners.

Thanks for asking!!

Best,
Bonnie

Wanda's Wings said...

Love the pic and beautiful stories. Good memories are a wonderful thing.

Oklahoma Granny said...

What a wonderful tribute to your grandfather.

Donnie said...

That was lovely and I'm sure he is smiling down on you right now.

Champs said...

I did not have the joy of meeting Great-grandpa and I remember bit's and piece of that old farm house. I do remember the sledding excursions and Dawn covering me as we went under that barbwire fence. I too remember coming home from Great-Grandma's with pails full of Buckeyes! I remember the attic, the kitchen, and the stairs. Most of all I remember the window!! The one lone red window that no matter where you stood it glowed!! I wish I would have gotten a chance to meet Grandpa and I also wish I had a little more time with Great-Grandma.

Old Kitty said...

What a brilliant tribute to your wonderful Grandpa!!! I love his picture here -he has such a kind face and mischeivous fun twinkly eyes!

I wish you a peaceful and lovely St Patrick's Day! take care
x

Jules said...

No I am not crying, it is my allergies. What a wonderful piece of writing and a beautiful memory.

Happy St Pat's
Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

Peggy K said...

Beautiful tribute. So very lucky, you are!!

I never knew either one of my granddads. One died when my mom was a child, the other died when I was 2 months old. My kids never knew my dad. Sure glad my grandkids have good memories of their granddads.

Thanks for sharing your story!

Mamma has spoken said...

That was a wonderful tribute to your grandfather. My mom passed away at Easter time, and I always think of her and that time about now.

Tammy said...

Hum, not sure my post got through, I got a booboo notice.

You have such vivid memories of your grandfather and what a visual we have of him while we read your post.

Hope your day was good and uneventful.

Arkansas Patti said...

Sometimes when we lose a loved one on a holiday, that holiday is forever spoiled. I am so glad it is not that way for you. Instead it seems it is a time for delightful memories of a special man in your life. Wonderful tribute.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

OH Tracy, I love this post... You are so lucky to have had great times with your grandparents... I was born when Mom was 42 and Dad was 53---so ALL of my grandparents were dead BEFORE I was born. I missed out on so much when it comes to family, as a child. I had some Great Aunts --but that was about all.

Love that top picture of you and your Grandpa.. How special!!!!

It's good to keep his memory alive --after all of these years.
Hugs,
Betsy

Wanda said...

That is just the most touching tribute to a wonderful grandpa. Your childhood sounds like a dream and what a special relationship with him.

Mildred said...

A very special man and such beloved memories. So happy you have the precious photo. Yes, we will be reunited with those we loved and held dear.

amy @ Life in Pink Hi-Tops said...

Beautiful remembrances of your grandfather.

Stuff could always be worse said...

I love this memory of your grandfather, it reminds me of my "Big Daddy"
kim
ps. thanks :)

~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

What a touching post! Memories are a wonderful thing to have because nothing can ever take them away...Thank-you for sharing them with us today. It's a good way for me to end my day....

Sheri said...

Can you believe the luck? My grandfather died on St. Patrick's Day also. It has been a day of reflection for me as well. Love your post.

Ami said...

Look at the PRIDE on that man's face! You were so loved by him, weren't you?

This was a sweet but melancholy post.

We buried my grandfather on my 13th birthday.
I miss him still.

Linda Reeder said...

What a lovely post. It reminds me once again that I did not have a close relationship with any of my grandparents, even though they were not far away. That's sad. I'm not letting that happen with my grandchildren.

Rural Rambler said...

I am just reading this Tracy. What a lovely thing to read this Friday morning. What a sweet smile he has holding you. Those memories are so nice to have. I had a wonderful relationship with my GrandDad. He was a character and he started me with my love for horses when I was two.

Catherine said...

Grandpa's are always so special ~ I remember one of mine always had butterscotch candies to share!

Lovely post Tracy!

xo Catherine

Happy Days said...

That was very sweet. Very fitting tribute to him, and it shows the absolute love you had for him...debbie

Pat said...

A touching memoir of a beloved Grandpa.
Thank you for visiting Past Imperfect.
BTW the welcome verdict of the oncologist was for my husband - in case I didn't make it clear:)

LTM said...

oh. ((hugs)) to you. Grandparents are such special people--I miss my grandmother around this time every year as well. It's when we lost her to a heart attack. :o| <3

Talli Roland said...

What a wonderful way to remember your grandfather.

Corine said...

That. was. beautiful. :) It made me think of my dear papa. God loved us, so he gave us grandpa's. :) LOL ~ And though I know you must miss him, how great it is to have a speical day, every year... to be reminded of him.

PS This gets me in the mood to do more genealogy, and to search for stories, and I just did it yesterday! It's going to be a long wait until next Thursday comes around again - THANKS! ;D

Nezzy said...

Your Grandpa sounds like a most extraordinary man. Just bask in those dear memories 'till you can jump in his lap and hear his stories again.

God bless ya and have a beautiful weekend sweetie.

BTW: Yes, it is and oxymoron that I hate winters snow but collect snowmen. I also have collections of bears, bunnies and angels.

Dianne said...

the photo is a treasure Tracy
and your memories are wonderful
Grandpa has a kind kind face
You were lucky to have him
and I'm sure he felt blessed to spend time with his grandchildren

that poem always makes me tear up

Joanna Jenkins said...

"...his easy joyous attitude on life..." What a wonderful way to live and a wonderful way to remember your Grandfather. He's sounds like a very special man.

Your tribute is clearly heart-felt and so beautifully written. Thank you for sharing with us.

Sending hugs, jj

Grandma Yellow Hair said...

Honey this is such a wonderful loving post and I am glad I did not miss it. What sweet memories you have of your grandfather. I know how you still miss him as I do mine.
Thank you for sharing this with us
Love ya
Maggie

Heather said...

Such thoughtful memories. This is the 2nd post i have read about granparents, it's funny i had a dream about my grandmother last night who passed away 10 years ago - she never got to meet my two girls...in the dream she did and was hugging them and it was so real...thanks for sharing this...granparents are someone to treasure forever...thanks for posting this! Nice picture, too!`:)

Jim said...

What a great post Tracy in tribute to your grandfather......I am sure you have made him proud!
Grandparents are wonderful people.....I got to know only one of my grandfathers and I do have fond memories of him.
Have a great weekend!

From the Kitchen said...

Your question about whether I ever posted anything I didn't like was quite prophetic!! Actually, the cake wasn't bad. We sliced it and cut off the top. I sure didn't want to waste it with those apples and walnuts inside!

Best,
Bonnie

Rita said...

What a wonderful post full of love! My grandparents were gone by the time I arrived in the world; now we make sure we take time with our grandchildren hoping to create memories like you just shared.
Rita

Pat - Arkansas said...

What a sweet tribute to your grandfather. Both of my grandfathers were gone by the time I was born, so I don't have those precious memories.

LDH said...

I get a glimpse of what a dear guy your grandfather was from your touching words. My dad lost his sister on St Patrick's Day. Sweet memories you have!

Shelia said...

Oh, what a sweet tribute to your grandfather! What sweet memories.
Thanks for popping in to see me.
Be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

maggie's garden said...

Any guy that let his pets lick his dishes and silverware is tops in my book!! Loving tribute. It's a bit past St. Paddy's Day...but I'm tippin' a glass for him. Cheers.

Have a lovely weekend. xo

Canyon Girl said...

What a lovely tribute to your grandfather. and what a wonderful childhood your grandparents provided for you. Those are the kind of memories I wish for everyone.--Inger

June said...

Tracy I loved reading these beautiful memories of your grandfather. It got me thinking and wondering and hoping that Dale and I are creating these memories with our own awesome g-kids. They love coming here and riding the horses and playing in the hammock and hunting faeries in the garden. (okay...maybe just the teeniest one still believes) but that's enough for me))
You sound like your time with your grandfather was magical and full of love. You are a lucky, lucky girl. I was blessed this way as well.
sending hugs

Sandra said...

Great tribute to your grandfather...can I just say though, how interesting it is to see what a big deal St. Patrick's is in the US! The only thing that went on in my city for March 17th was a cookie bake sale from the volunteers at the hospital where I work!

From the Kitchen said...

Tracy: Check out King Arthur Flour's website for recipes. Bar cookies are always good and they have a slew to choose from. Every recipe I've tried has been delicious!

Best,
Bonnie

Brian said...

That is a special green memory full of goodness!

Tillie and Georgia said...

That was a lovely tribute to your Grandfather. Hugs to all your family.
Thank you for your purrs for Mickey.
We really miss him and it will take
a while to get used to him bot being here.
Purrs Tillie and Georgia

Kimmy said...

Tracy you have such wonderful memories of your grandfather to hold onto and you've made them so vivid for us, I can see them play out in my head as I read.
I only knew 1 grandmother as a child. All my other grandparents had passed away by the time I was born. My only memory of my mother's father is a photo of him in his casket, draped in an American flag. I was born a little late in life for my parents so everyone to *old* to me as a kid. lol
I hope you're having a wonderful first day of Spring :)

KathyA said...

I love that Irish blessing.