It’s weird how when someone in your life passes away how everyone seems to remember that each other exist. We start giving more hugs, we visit one another, we really cherish our family. We say things like “there’s always a good in every bad” and feel happy that we reconnected with family members we haven’t seen in years. However, it’s a bummer that it has to happen that way. Why does it take the death of someone special to bring us all together? This weekend we celebrated the life of my Grandma Charlotte (who I wrote about here in February). She was a wonderful woman who saw the best in every person she came in contact with. She lived life to the fullest, remembered every detail of every story and loved to talk to anyone who would listen. She was sharp, too. Her wit was incomparable and she could always tell a good joke, or use a little bit of sarcasm. She really was one of the greatest women I’ve ever met. In the post I mentioned previously, you can see photographs of her when she was younger, and you can tell that she had fun in life. That time in February was the last time that I saw her.
I was able to spend this weekend with my family and we had no itinerary. Our only goal was to relax and be with each other. And it is really something that I love doing. I went to Siesta Key and Sarasota with my Dad when I was about 8 years old and I remember it being one of the most fun times. Going to Siesta Key beach, playing in the Ocean, eating at Dad’s favorite restaurants, staying out late downtown and just spending quality time. This time, I was able to do the same thing, but I was older. I understood things more. He showed all of us the places that his parents lived, where they vacationed, where they ate dinner and what they did. It was like a real-life trip down Memory Lane.
My Dad really is a remarkable person. He doesn’t always think so (do you Dad?), but he really is. He always talks about how great his parents were and how he wishes that he was even a little bit like them, but what I don’t think he realizes is that he is SO very much like them. He is patient, he is funny, he knows how to have a good time, he puts others ahead of himself, he doesn’t worry about the little things in life and he cares about what is important in life … his family, being a hard worker and fitting fun into your life. Seeing him in his Florida “element” was really great for me. So, a lot of pictures that I took are of my Dad. (Sorry Dad, hope you don’t mind!). But it’s something I wanted to capture. My Dad looking at the pelicans, my Dad eating at his favorite restaurant of all time and really capturing it without telling him to smile at me and pose. (For that, I am thankful for my Step-Mom Lynn who took all the wonderful photos of the rest of our family and the ones that I always forget to take — so thank you so much Lynn!)
So, cheers to my Grandma (who would have turned 90 on Saturday) and cheers to my Dad … who brings a little bit of Charlotte back into my life every time I see him.