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What I learned from Gram

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  • Sheryl Simons
    ~The Simple Life~ by Sheryl Simons Parents are like shuttles on a loom. They join the threads of the past with threads of the future and leave their own bright
    Message 1 of 1 , May 10, 2004
      ~The Simple Life~
      by Sheryl Simons


      Parents are like shuttles on a loom. They join the threads of the
      past with threads of the future and leave their own bright patterns
      as they go.~~ Fred Rogers

      To be tested is good. The challenged life may be the best
      therapist.~~ Gail Sheehy


      There is nothing we cannot live down, rise above, and overcome. ~~
      Ella Wheeler Wilcox

      * * *
      Just as the tulips were beginning to bloom and the lilacs were
      budding up, my Grandma Jacobs died this past week. In my lifetime,
      my Grandmother was a fresh spring tulip in my life, bright and
      beautiful. She gave me life, in that she gave me my mother – the
      most beautiful gift!
      Grandmothers are, like mothers, just a bit imperfect. But if
      there were a perfect grandmother for me, she was it. Why? Was she
      rich? Full of wisdom? Did she spoil me rotten? No, she was a
      pretty ordinary grandmother, but someone I have learned much from –
      and without her, my life would have been very dull.
      From my Grandmother, I learned the life of travel and
      adventure. After my grandfather's death, she went back to school in
      her 50's and became a schoolteacher. She did her student teaching
      in Guatemala. She was very independent and took care of herself, by
      herself. She didn't wallow in self-pity, but pulled herself up by
      her bootstraps. She and friends took many trips abroad. She was
      fearless. She had many, many friends.
      I learned from my grandmother, that when you mess up, you admit
      it. You look that mistake in the eye, and you learn from it. Never
      hide from your mistakes. Apologize and move on. You are not
      responsible for other's forgiveness, they are. If they choose
      resentment, that's their responsibility.
      People will, for whatever reason, not always be pleased with
      your decisions. We are not here to be people pleasers. It's our
      job to do what is right, and do our best. I learned that from her,
      too. Don't take things personally. It's more about them than it is
      about you.
      Spend time with your grandkids – give them lots of happy
      memories. She did this for me. Sleepovers, a houseful of cousins,
      beach sand, and good food. And she didn't complain about cleaning
      up after us. Once we cousins broke a bottle of red bubblebath on
      her white bedroom carpet. She was disappointed, but not angry. The
      stain settled to a dull pink, but it was never mentioned again.
      Family. That says it all for Gram. That was her #2
      priority. No questions asked.
      God. That was her #1 priority from where I stood. Plain and
      simple. To the best of her ability she did what she could to pass
      on her faith to her family and friends.
      Growing older is not something any of us signs up for. It's
      hard to ask for help when we are used to being independent, but we
      don't have a choice in the matter. Gram did the best she could her
      last few years and it was so hard to watch her independence and
      strength come to an end. But she never stopped being an example of
      doing her best. When it comes to being a grandmother, what more
      could we ask?
      Grandma, you are now off on undoubtedly the greatest
      adventure ever. We can only begin to imagine.

      * * *

      Inexpensive Hand, Foot and Body Cream for Gardeners

      The older we get, the more we need body lotion. Here is a recipe
      for an inexpensive lotion you can make at home and save $$$!
      Buy the ingredients at the dollar store.
      1 jar petroleum jelly
      2 bottles (15 oz) baby lotion
      2 jars vitamin E skin cream

      Mix together using a wire whisk or electric mixer. You will have a
      large batch, so you will need some containers. You can give some as
      gifts! Experiment with adding a few drops of essential oils for
      fragrance, if you like, and you might want to try adding sunscreen
      for a summer time version. Some container suggestions might be
      small pickle jars, or empty candle jars that have tops. You might
      also find some decorative containers at the dollar store, as well.
      Try a small amount first to see how you like it. It will make even
      your feet smooth and silky.

      * * *

      Simple Reader Wisdom

      Reader Sharon writes:

      We've had an exceptionally warm spring in our area. I live in
      Modesto California. Most of our spring perennials have already
      finished blooming. Trees are all full of leaves and the grasses are
      pretty and green.
      We have had problems with neighbor cats bothering the birds we
      invite into our yard so your links this week have been a huge help.
      Thanks!
      * * *

      With all the Rhubarb and Asparagus up, please send in your favorite
      early spring recipes! I'd love to share them with our Simple Life
      family.

      * * *

      Every gardener knows that under the cloak of winter lies a
      miracle ... a seed waiting to sprout, a bulb opening to the light, a
      bud straining to unfurl. And the anticipation nurtures our dream.
      ~~ Barbara Winkler

      Keeping it Simple,
      Sheryl
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