Saturday, February 16, 2013

Grandma Rafferty

This is my Grandma Rafferty. Here we are with my kids and my mom this past summer. The last time I saw her - the last time I will ever see her.

Grandma Rafferty always baked the best treats - her peanut butter fudge was to die for.

Grandma Rafferty always had sweet cereals in her pantry - breakfast was delicious at her house.

Grandma Rafferty always was crafty, she could sew anything - including that ridiculous Wilma Flintstone costume I wore as a senior in high school.

Grandma Rafferty always gave me $10 for Christmas, some years I also received a knitted hanger - I still use those hangers for sweaters that hang.

Grandma Rafferty had seven children, when she was asked how she wasn't crazy she replied "of course I am crazy" - I love that line, I use that line often.

Grandma Rafferty died early this morning. I am flying to New York tomorrow to attend her funeral. The odd thing about living so far away is that people don't really exist in your life, in your day to day routine, they are not there. I can't remember the last time Grandma Rafferty was in my day to day routine, but it's been a while. A very long while. As a result, I won't really know she's not here anymore until I don't visit her next summer. I will realize she is not on my list of people to see and it will hit me - bam, right in the middle of summer.

Right now I am trying to accommodate the fact that I no longer have grandparents. I think how distant my great-grandparents were to me - my last one died when I was two or three, I had her name but she seemed so ancestor-like. I realize that my children will think about Great-Grandma Rafferty (that Elizabeth always called Grandma Rhapsody, which I think she liked) will just think of her as an ancestor. She'll show up on their family tree and they'll say, oh yeah, Nana's Mother. But they will have no idea that her peanut butter fudge was unbelievable and that she could sew costumes that were amazing.

I have to remember her story so that I can tell her story.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

At the Zoo

We went to the Hogle Park Zoo yesterday - and we saw this beautiful creature. He paced on top of this bridge, looking down at us. I was as close as it appears.

I wondered about what he thought about as he paced. My dad suggested he was "looking at the animals" and I think that could be true. I wondered if he thought - here I am one of 400 left in the world, destroyed by the virus that is humanity who then take me into an enclosure and feel good about having saved me.

I wish I could be one of those people who go to the zoo and just ooh and ahh at the animals - life would be so much simpler.

Sunday, January 01, 2012

New Year's Resolution

It is beautiful out here today. 1 January 2012. And the weather is stunning.

My resolutions for this year:

  1. Finally lose the weight. Finally.
  2. Exercise every day. Every day.
  3. Start saying no. At least once a week.
  4. For every ridiculous historical romance novel, read a good book.
  5. Spend a lot less money.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

RIP Tree

We had a dry hurricane here last week. We had wind registering 100 mph at the University. Two miles away at my house our 60 year old huge evergreen went down. I drove home increasingly nervous about our tree because I saw tree after tree down. When I turned left on my street I saw this:

I said to the kids, oh my god, stay in the car. I think our tree ate a car. I got out of the car and ran over to find a man standing there. He said he was stopped at the stop sign in front of our house, looked up and the tree fell on him. Down the road a bit a tree totaled a car - just smooshed it - it was in all the papers and all over the news. But my tree landed on this guy in his car and did no damage.

Here you see the tree from the street - notice that it is blocking most of the road. The white truck behind the tree is the City guy who said to me "it's your tree." I said, no shit, I know it's my tree. Let me wave my magic wand to fix it - because what they wanted was for me to pick it up and move it off the street. When I indicated the odds of my moving it in any kind of timely fashion were pretty slim, he called some other city guys and they chain sawed the guy's car out of the tree and cleared the tree off the road. Miraculously, the guy backed his car up and drove away - he has made no claim against my homeowner's insurance. Then two kids showed up and asked if we wanted to have him cut it all up and take it away for $500 - I said, yeah, go for it.

I cried and I laughed as I told this story. On my little quarter acre of land I have - had - 8 trees, now I have 7. And I loved my big evergreen - it housed the magpies who came every year to teach their babies to fly. It blocked the sun from the house and made the Princess's room very cool in the summer.

Once, when I was crying, the Princess told me it would be okay, we could plant another tree. She's right, and we will.