After too many years to count of slowly losing the Alzheimer’s disease battle, my Grandma June passed away this September. She was only 95 years young. Of course, going through the process of preparing for her celebration of life brought back many, many memories of the “old” Grandma June. The woman I used to know in my teenage years. And most of the memories revolved around two subjects:
Social graces. Grandma smiled and made everyone feel at home. She never met a stranger. Ever. As a teenager, she was embarassing because she talked to everyone. In my late twenties and early thirties, it was great to walk through Issaquah with her. She welcomed everyone who passed by. Often turning a grumpy face into a little smile. She was especially happy to see children and animals. Every dog got an ear scratching.
Born: June 10, 1917
Death: September 29, 2012
Piles of food. She always had food for everyone. Until she started losing her mind.
- I remember walking in the door as a kid, and having her pull salad after salad from her refridgerator. Coleslaw and macaroni. Or maybe fruit salad. I often wondered how it all fit.
- Another snack she always had handy – whether at her house, in the travel trailer at some campground or on her frequent visits to our house – hard salumi, a variety of cheeses and more grapes that you can count.
- Maybe the most fascinating was her starting my love for jicama. She would slice it and eat it plain. I have learned that lime juice or paprika sprinkles or in a salad are also wonderful ways to eat it.
- And then the not-so good memories. Burnt toast – and charred fish. To this day, I don’t like an charred food!
Ironically, she never lost her appetite (in fact she could eat for hours because she didn’t remember she just ate five minutes ago).