You know how sometimes some folks are just “on your mind?” You keep thinking about them and can’t get them out of your thoughts. Today…been thinking about my Grandma. I can’t really pinpoint a reason why she’s been on my mind lately. She’s a fun person to think about. Full of lots of spunk, sass and very snarky. That was my favorite part about her.
Here’s something I wrote two years ago and wanted to ‘re-blog’. Her name was Peggy…
It’s late & I’m tired. This has been a long day tacked into a long week. Nothing really tasking has happened. It’s just that feeling of moving quickly through space and time …completing the checklist and feeling unhinged from the moment. That is until I received a package on my doorstep today. It’s funny, I kept racking my brain trying to remember what I or my husband had ordered. I opened the box. It was filled to the brim with white packing popcorn. The kind that generates static electricity and makes it difficult to remove the object from the box without spilling styrofoam pieces everywhere. Setting aside my anal retentiveness, I plunged my hand in and pulled out the smaller box that was inside. All the while my son is constantly chattering to me and delighted to track down all the styrofoam pieces and crunch them. I move through the motions of opening the smaller box. Upon seeing what was inside, time stopped. I was no longer unhinged from the moment and became immediately connected.
The package was from my uncle and inside was a wooden Anri figurine that belonged to my grandmother. It’s of a young girl carrying a tea set. The girl is dressed in clothes that look similar to what Laura Ingalls wore on Little House on the Prairie…only much finer. Her hair is pulled back in a bun and she has a puffy hat on her head. Her tea set is complete with teapot, sugar, creamer and two cups…all decorated with little blue flowers. Perhaps to me, the most touching part was draped around the figurine. It was a wooden beaded necklace with my name in beads. My grandmother had purchased the necklace for me and one for all my cousins, for that matter. Each necklace had our names. My necklace had been placed on this little figure over 30 years ago. My uncle included a letter describing the story behind my grandmothers love and collection for these figures. His letter describes how this one, because the necklace was on it and the little girl appears to be going to a tea party, she had intended for me.
My grandma and I used to have tea party’s, often. Our tea party’s were on toy tea sets made from real china. I didn’t really like to play dolls; although she was an avid collector. Frankly, I’ve always found dolls to be weird. I couldn’t ever get into cross stitch and she was marvelous at it. I remember several times, after having attempted to work with me on a cross stitch project or taking me to the toy store and almost begging me to buy a doll, she would shake her head and say, “I can’t believe I’m related to you.” But we did have tea party’s.
She passed away 8… Almost 9 years ago. I still have dreams about her, routinely. Sometimes in my dreams she’s ill from the Alzheimer’s she battled and, to cheer her up, I pull out pictures of her grand kids. We start to talk about all my cousins and it seems to make her smile. Other times, she’s in my dreams and completely healthy. I ask her, bluntly, “What are you doing here? I thought you died?” (remember, it’s a dream and nothing really makes sense) In her usual spunkiness she responds, slightly miffed that I even asked her, “Yes, yes, I know. ”
You know that scripture verse in Hebrews…12:1, I think. It talks about how we have “so great a cloud of witnesses….to run with endurance the race set before us.” I think my grandma is in my cloud of witnesses. I think, that as I run this race, she is cheering me. That I can’t quit the race and I’ve no choice but to run in such a way as to win.
The little “tea time” figurine was an unexpected blessing today. She is a reminder of where I come from. A reminder of my grandmother. A strong woman filled with grace who taught me that the art to having a tea party is learning how to slow down and live in the moment.