Goodbye, Norma Jean 4

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My grandmother was Norma Jean. No, not that one, and she would be quick to tell you that she was not named after that one.  We sadly lost her Monday night, she was 85.

She was still of a generation that lived through some real stuff, and she loved to tell us all her “way back” stories.  We will all miss those stories even though we heard them countless times.  One of her favorites to tell us was when her uncle would sneak her off and go flying when she was little.  Sworn to keep it a secret from her mother, their rouse was a trip to the store.

She would laugh and say that she had to go back to work after my grandfather retired because he drove her crazy.  She was the office manager of a wedding chapel and she loved it.  When I was working as a photographer, we would laugh and share stories about weddings and crazy families.

I’m sorry that she’s gone, and I will miss her terribly.  But, I’m pretty damn lucky, in a way.  I still had a living grandparent at 38 years old.   She’s not someone I will only remember from the occasional Christmas when I was a kid.  She’s not a face in a picture that I only sort of recall.  My grandmother has been a big part of my life.  I was lucky enough to have her there when I graduated high school, when I graduated from college, and when I got married.

My grandmother LOVED to read.  She could tear through books like few people I know.  She loved be surrounded by books!  I hope  that is something I inherited from her.  When I started book blogging, and therefore receiving copious amounts of books, I’d take bags of them over for her to read.  She would light up at my piles of books for her!  She would always tell me what she’d read and if she liked them.  She was a huge fan of Debbie Macomber and Fern Michaels.

One of my favorite memories is when I was still pretty little and we would visit for the weekend.  My grandfather had a garden in the empty lot that belonged to the next door neighbor.  He would pick a bag of green beans and my grandmother and I would snap them for dinner.  I don’t know why that sticks in my memory, something so simple, but it was time spent with her.

She was very glad that her family all lived so close and she would always say how lucky she was to have us all around.  We were the lucky ones.

My grandmother, though gone, will never be far from our hearts.


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