Burla Fitzgerald Loudin
If she’d lived longer than the 97 years God gave her, Grandma would have turned 102 this past weekend. That’s how old Aunt Bess was when she passed, so it’s not much of a stretch.
I wear the engagement ring my grandfather gave her on my right ring finger. She had largish hands and when she gave it to me she assumed I’d need to get it sized. It fit perfectly, which I think delighted her as much as giving it to me did.
Here’s what I miss about her:
- Playing ring around the rosey in the side yard where the sweet william bloomed.
- Games of button, button, who’s got the button, hide and seek, crazy eights and old maid.
- Cutting roses, flags (irises), mountain laurel and peonies from the front yard.
- Making popcorn and grilled cheese sandwiches in the same skillet on a gas stove.
- The tick, tick, tick of the gas stove lighting and then the sulphur smell of matches.
- Dirty socks from running around shoeless in a house with a coal-burning stove.
- A TV tray at the front door with Halloween candy laid out, waiting for trick-or-treaters.
And Sunday dinners (usually ham, don’t forget the bread) and playing in the creek and “bless your heart” when I was sad and a jewelry box that unfurled when you lifted the lid and head scarves and white sweaters with shiny buttons . . .
But most of all, I miss, “I love you a bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck,” followed by the most wonderful, I-love-you-forever Grandma hugs.
And even though she’s gone, I know she does love me forever. And I love her, too. A bushel and a peck that run clear to heaven and back again.
Miss you Grandma.