Thursday, May 8, 2014

Gragran the Great: Happy Mother's Day

What an honor it is to tell you just a bit about my grandmother, my mother's mother.  We call her Gragran.  My mother recently wrote her story…  I wish you could all read her book.  She is really quite fantastic!!   We'll try to give you a piece of why we love her so much.

Abe:  "Gragran is an amazing woman. She is a survivor. She has been through more in her lifetime than most. After all these years she still has a positive disposition. I love how she is her own woman.

She is so talented at making things that bless the lives of others. I still sleep on the special neck pillow she made for me. I can't sleep on anything else!

It is always a pleasure to see her bright, beaming face when we visit. She loves the children so much. I am grateful for her example to me and my family of how to endure to the end with style and enjoy the journey. I love you, Gragran!"

Jackson:  "Gragran is really active for her age, and she's very sweet.  She's very talented.  Whenever I look at her, she's very beautiful, and she smiles at me.  I like how she never gives up.  She's strong in the gospel, and she still walks.  Her hair is so beautiful, and she makes nice quilts.  She's a very good cook too.  She sends us wonderful stuff.  I love her.  Whenever I look at her, I feel loved."

Tyson:  "Even though she's 95, she still looks pretty.  Every time I see her, she's smiling.  I love how she takes care of such a wonderful garden.  I love all the stuff she sews.  I always look forward to seeing her when I go to Nanny and Papa's house.  She creates a lot of cool things like corn husk dolls, aprons, neck pillows, and porcelain dolls.  I love her sooo much."

Jordan:  "I love her because she's always smiling.  She's really funny, and she always gives us gifts.  I love seeing her when we go to Nanny Camp because she's fun.  I like when she gave us the quilt.  Every time we leave we always visit her one last time.  [She lives across the street from Nanny.]  It's awesome because she's almost 100!  Only 5 more years and then she's at 100!!  I like when we visit her because she takes us to the backyard, and then we get to see everything.  It looks like a small yard in the front, but in the back it's really big."

Mariah:  "I like that she's nice to us.  And I like that she helps us when we come over and see her.  She's excited to see us, and I like that because she is beautiful.  I love her because she's really, really nice to us, and she does stuff that sometimes we can't do… like giving us stuff.  You know how she gives us candy and all that stuff?  Also she gives us National Geographics.  I love you Gragran."

Juliana:  "I love Gragran because she kisses me.  I like my baby from Gragran. I love Gragran because she likes Jesus.  Gragran is a star.  She's Nanny's mom.  Gragran is 2 stars.  We go to her house."

Jayden:  He didn't say much, but I know he loves Gragran sooo much. :-)

My Turn:-): Gragran's front window is lined with beautiful glass bottles of all different colors.  It is a joy to enter her home.  She laughs and smiles throughout our entire visit.  She makes me laugh because she sees the funny side of things in life.  Her parents were emigrants from Czechoslovakia, and she endured tremendous hardship through her growing up years and her married life… however, her power to forgive and keep loving touches me deeply.  She is one of the strongest women I know.

Gragran is in her 95th year… still lives alone… cares for a gorgeous garden that looks like a park… is always reading a book… and is always finding a way to serve others by using her talents.

Her mind is brilliant!!  She reads my blog everyday and sends me edits via my mother!!!  She catches misspelled and other grammatical errors that my husband, mother, nor I catch!! 

Her body has multiple aches and pains.  It's hard for her to not be able to live the active life she once led, but I hope she understands the influence she has on our lives merely by enduring and finding joy in the life God has given her.   We are inspired by her.  

Funny story:  One day she had excruciating pain in her back.  Abe offered to give her a priesthood blessing to help heal her.  At first she turned it down saying, "I don't want a priesthood blessing because then I'll get better, and I'm ready to go."  We're grateful she changed her mind!!!  We need her with us!!!  She accepted the priesthood blessing and felt better shortly after. 

Gragran recently quilted this blanket for our children with fun little pictures for the children to find…

Each stitch done by her aching hands is so small it's unbelievable!!  

She made me this apron just a few years ago!!  The kids love it when I wear it.  

Gragran and my mother made this gorgeous quilt when Abe and I got married.  This quilt represents many, many hours of work done with loving hands.  

Gragran made both of these dolls for me when I was a young girl.  She sewed the dresses for both dolls. she stitched this one's face...

…and painted her face.

Gragran didn't make this blanket, but she gave it to me when I was about 8-years old.  All of us love to cuddle in it… especially knowing it's from Gragran.  

My dear Gragran, thank you for raising a wonderful daughter, my mother.  Thank you for teaching me so much as my grandmother.  Thank you for living a life of great honor for your great-grandchildren to emulate.