We are getting closer to the day of family remembrance but this year is different than previous experiences. At the moment Grandma is next door attending a “cookie exchange” and she has made some kind of lemon cookie (pretty good hey baby, have her make you some at some point) and then a kind of “brittle or bark” type amalgamation of nuts and more nuts etc…. there are other gals there so it is a great outlet for her and gives me some time at home with my thoughts and stuff. I managed to get both my lights and your moms lights up before the next snowmageddon arrives. I have been putting them up for your mom since you guys moved into your big house and like I told her a couple days ago that I put them up for her and not you as she is the original “hey baby”. Your mom remembers the lights that I put up on Florida when she was a kid as we went all out with the little house we have there, we always had a ball the two of us. The Season and the hanging of lights goes a long way back in this family. My dad put lights up outside since the early 60’s and did it every year without fail and also had a real tree decorated to the max along with it. Even during the “farm” years in Michigan we had a tree but it was a tree that he just walked out into the woods behind our house and cut it down and put it up. So we have been inspired by how my parents approached the Season and it was pretty much full bore and that feeling has continued for over 60 of my years and I’m the baby of the family.
Things though have slowly, gently, moved from the method and means of how we used to do things to a less intensive interaction of the parties in question. Uncle Justin and Aunt Gina are great but now that they have created a family of their own they also have another side to their pared union through marriage with those members on Gina’s side of the family. Aunt Heather still living down in Houston will be here with us this year which is great, but even though we treasure her presence with us whenever possible it’s not always possible. Your mom and dad (and you) have carved out your own family and the growing traditions you have will become a part of “your” traditions that you will carry on when you have your own family. At some point your dad is going to have to take over the stringing of the lights on the house and you can stand there and hold the ladder and hold the string of lights while he uses my invention of the “Light Stringing Stick” that your mom and I have perfected…..”ebay” awaits. Which leads me to Christmas being different this year….for Grandma and me. It looks like we may/will be celebrating the important day just the two of us. Between you and me hey baby, I like having Grandma all to myself. She’s the best and the best for me. I would like to ask you a favor though just for me. At some point I will go on ahead of you and Grandma and mom and transition into the presence of the Lord and be waiting there for the rest of you to catch up. But Grandma is going to be awfully lonely and pretty sad that I am no longer here to make my usual messes and doing stupid things and creating general chaos in her life. Use those days to come close to her and do not be afraid to remind her of those things that you might remember of me if I should live long enough to have some with you. The goal for me is to capture these thoughts even before we create the memories so in the best of circumstances you will have both to call upon.
So it sounds like Grandma has returned home by the heavy footsteps I hear over my head. Can I tell you I love you so very much? You are still crazy for Grandma and I still get escorted by hand out of your playroom when Grandma is near your view. I understand….I still feel the same way about her as you do. Even though I know in “this” case it is also Grandma to “tolerates” me as well always knowing she will get more of who I am and what I do….