Sunday, April 13, 2008

My Mamaw

Recently the boys and I spent the afternoon with my Mamaw. She is an amazing woman, and this summer, we will celebrate her 90th birthday! If you meet her between now and then, she will invite you to the BIG PARTY!
She lived with my Papaw for over 60 years, but he went home to heaven in 2002. She now lives on her own in a little apartment, and she still drives herself wherever she needs to go! We are similar is lots of ways. I'm certain she has passed a few things down to me through her genes. For instance...
1.) We both love pictures! I mean, we really LOVE pictures (just scroll down this blog - you'll get the idea!) Whenever Mamaw and I have a visit, we spend a lot of the time looking through her albums and reminiscing about "days gone by." Mamaw's shelves are FULL of photo albums and her walls are full of pictures! One of my favorite memories with her was when Kelly brought her to High Point. Mamaw, Kelly, and I made a scrapbook of some of her favorite pictures. She wrote all of the stories about the people in her own handwriting. This scrapbook of memories will forever be cherished!
2.) We enjoy memories made by building with poker chips! The boys played with Papaw's poker chips when we were there for the afternoon. This infamous set was a gift from Kathy to Papaw. I played with this same set when I was a little girl. In fact, Wendy, Kelly, and I would play "Poker Chip Bakery" and we would pretend our different stacks of colored chips were different kinds of bakery cakes available for purchase. The boys simply enjoyed stacking them up and knocking them down. :-) As I smiled at the simplicity of their fun, I realized how Mamaw must have enjoyed watching me as a little girl.

Okay, I'll admit it. Mason wasn't really "into" the poker-chip thing!3.) We both have a strong love and commitment to family. My Mamaw loves her family. I'm not sure I've ever seen someone more joyous about family occasions. Even at 89, Mamaw can still recite from memory EVERY birthday in her family. Three children, Eight grandchildren, and Sixteen (seventeen this summer!) great-grandchildren...she knows every single birthday! She even knows all of the anniversaries! I can always be certain that there will be a sweet card in the mailbox for my birthday! She's also fast with the telephone if there is family news to share. If you want everyone to know what is happening - just call Mamaw!

4.) Shopping for ourselves is low on the priority list. I'm sure you have read my entry about my adorable, precious, and, yes, honest four-year-old asking me if I was planning to wear my pajamas to church. Well, that is because I do not prioritize shopping for myself. I continue to wear - and wear - ummm...and wear....things that I already have. On Sunday, I saw Mamaw and she said, with great pride, "Robin, you see this top here?" (She was speaking about the one she was wearing.) "Well, honey, I got this for my 80th birthday. It's nearly ten years old!" Then she giggled because she was so proud of herself! Now, I see where I get it! Oh, my! I need to look back through some older albums to see how long I have owned some of my clothing - I probably have some things I wore in my late 20s!

5.) We both love handmade gifts. For birthdays and Christmas, Mamaw has started giving some of her most prized possessions to the family. This past Christmas she gave me a purse that my own mother had made for her in 1970. She had kept it for nearly forty years! It is a cherished gift to me b/c I have heard the story behind it from my Mamaw, and because it was made when I was less than two years old! She found value in something handmade - Oh, I am so much like her!! I love gifts are made with love and care - how precious! The shelves in her kitchen are decorated with two mugs the boys and I painted for she and my Papaw several years ago. They are painted pottery, one says "Good Morning Mamaw" and the other mug says, "Good Morning Papaw." I feel so honored that she still has them. (My boys' pottery is also displayed in my own kitchen!) We both love handmade, homemade gifts!

6.) We both keep things of sentimental value. I keep things that the boys have given me. I have a file for some of the "love notes" I have received, and I love the gifts that they give me. On this day, during our visit, Mamaw asked me if I needed an umbrella. I said, "Actually, I could use one because I never seem to have one in the car." Mamaw proceeded to go out to her car, pop the trunk, and retrieve the strangest looking umbrella I have ever seen. The faded peach umbrella had a tortoise shell handle, with a 6 inch spiked point on the end. It could easily be used as a weapon! Then Mamaw handed the umbrella to me and said, "Robin, your Dad gave me this before he and Janet were married. I've always kept it in my trunk." (Yes, this umbrella was older than the purse!) She kept this because my Dad, her son, had given it to her. Believe it or not, it still opens and has already kept me dry during a rain storm! I know there is a bit of humor in it, but truly I find it to be precious. Who else would have a 40+ year old umbrella in their trunk? Only my Mamaw!

7.) We both love the Lord. Mamaw has always had a strong faith in the "Good Lord." I have admired her reliance on God through the loss of her lifetime partner and friend. She always says, "I give thanks to the Good Lord." She is really vocal about her faith but she has a quiet assurance about all that is to come when she leaves this earth. She talks freely about dying, and, frankly, she is ready to go. I was teasing her about living to be 100, and she looked deep in my eyes and said, "That's not a goal of mine." Sad words, but words from a woman who has tasted a full life with someone else, and now must continue on alone. I don't know God's timing to bring my Mamaw home to him. I'm thankful for the memories I have had with her. I will forever hold them in my heart.

"Gray hair is a crown of splendor; it is attained by a righteous life." Proverbs 16:31

"The glory of young men is their strength, gray hair is the splendor of the old." Proverbs 20:29

Mamaw - you are radiant with beauty. God has crowned you here on earth with gray hair, but you will be crowned in heaven with jewels of righteousness. I'm so blessed to have you in my life. I love you!


Anonymous said...

How precious! Your grandmother is a beautiful and wonderful person! Makes me want to visit my granny soon! Love, Amy

kelseyad said...

Lovely, Robin. Very touching. I should do this topic as well. How many things could I come up with for Mama Lib?!?!?! Hee Hee! I am going to a vow renewal deal for my Gram and Paw Paw Tuesday night. Something like 65 years. Will be a tear jerker for sure.

kelseyad said...

Lovely, Robin. Very touching. I should do this topic as well. How many things could I come up with for Mama Lib?!?!?! Hee Hee! I am going to a vow renewal deal for my Gram and Paw Paw Tuesday night. Something like 65 years. Will be a tear jerker for sure.

Hillbilly Rockin' Robin said...

Kelsey- At the mention of Mama Lib I think of so many stories and laughs of her "ways." I can picture your future - Sadie and Lillie trying to bathe you - lifting your larger body parts with teamwork...they will be trying not to laugh just as you and Ansley always did! Do you think I can forsee the future?!