Oh, yeah, and I'm linking up to the Journey of Parenthood, Emily's blog, for this Flashback Friday!
Not too long after my sister got married in July 2005, we found out that my Gram was really sick and the doctors were guessing she had about 5 months. NOT good news. We decided, as a family, that we would make each holiday she had left the best possible, with all of us together. And so, that Thanksgiving, the entire family traveled up to my grandparents' house in Anderson, SC. At the time, the whole family consisted of me, my parents, my brother, my sister and her new husband, my aunt and uncle and my two cousins, Jeremy and Jason, and my aunt and uncle from CT. At the time, the family seemed complete. Now, I couldn't be more sad that Michael wasn't there (we weren't even dating yet)....or that my nephew and my daughter weren't born yet. I enjoy looking at these pictures, even though they make me so sad that it was the very last Thanksgiving with my both of my grandparents around.
My mom, Gram, my Aunt Robin. Those three did the majority of the cooking. :-)
My Gramp, my cousin Jeremy and my brother. The musicians. I never said it was a quiet family gathering, ha ha!
Lots of football watching going on in the living room (my Uncle John, Dad, and cousin Jason)
Could we possibly squeeze any more chairs at that table? If I recall correctly, it was about 100 degrees in there too.
Gram with Dillon. Clearly he was trying to get out of the hug and she wouldn't let him!!
Jay and Uncle John
Gram, my sister and my Uncle Chip. I guess Sara was the only one ready for this pic!
Dad and his girls :-)
Gram, Jason and me.
Sara, Dillon and Jeremy. I don't know what in the world is in my brothers mouth?!
Gram and Gramp with their three kids. My mom is the oldest, then my Aunt Robin and then my Uncle Chip. I like that in my family, I am the oldest, then my sister and then my brother. Cool how it's the same like that.
Gram and Gramp with the grandkids. Clearly we are a serious bunch! ;-)
After that, my Dad set up his camera on a tripod and got a picture of the entire clan. I LOVE that picture. I haven't found the perfect spot to hang it in our new house yet so for now it is on the dresser in our guest bedroom. In our old house, it was on the wall in the hallway. Sophia had started asking me about it and would point out the people she knew (yup, she knew me, even though I was many pounds lighter then and my hair was many shades lighter, haha). Turns out she could name everyone except my Gram and Gramp. Which makes me more sad than I can even put into words. But if I have to show her a million pictures of them and point them out in this particular picture over and over I will so that even though she can't ever meet them, she will at least know who they are.
The newlyweds. This was their very first Thanksgiving as a married couple. I was glad they were there with the whole family that day. Sure wish Michael had been able to be there too. I know that my Gram would've loved him....1) everyone who meets him does and 2) she would've loved him just because I do. I know she loved her very first grandson-in-law.
I think I must've made this cake, although I don't remember doing so. Otherwise I can't imagine why I took a pic of it!! I hope it tasted better than it looked!! ;-)
I couldn't get this pic to rotate for whatever reason, but I love it. No clue why my Gramp is wearing gloves to cut up the turkey...but his face and Jay's amusement in the background make this pic a winner!!
I look pretty large in this pic. And my Gram's eyes aren't even open. But I still love it, cause it is of us together (and yes, I was a good 4 or 5 inches taller than her, hence the major lean I've got going on!).
Gah, that kid can't just stay still and take a hug!! But I got him and it still turned out to be a pretty cute pic!
Sara and Gram. I love this pic, even though Sara is smiling a little...um, strangely!! It kinda looks like it might be hurting her face a bit....Ha!!
Oh, this pic. Maybe it's more this memory. After dessert, we were all in the living room and my Uncle Chip and cousin Jeremy started to play some songs on the guitars, with my brother playing along on the drum to keep a beat. And we literally had a huge singalong for hours. Boy, did my Gram love to sing. And we covered every song you can think of (that we knew the words to and that they could figure out how to play, haha). Particularly every Beatles song you can name. As it stands, I can hardly ever hear Yesterday or Hey Jude (my personal fave Beatles tune) without crying or at the very least tearing up and feeling choked. Because this exact moment is what I always think of. I may or may not have cried during the Beatles Cirque de Soleil in Vegas, about 6 months after my Gram died, when those songs came on (I did). I like remembering that memory, because it was so much fun, but it's hard at the same time. Probably because it won't happen again.
By the time the next Thanksgiving rolled around, we were all gathered again, about a week before, in CT for my Gram's funeral. I think that each Thanksgiving I am reminded to be thankful for this particular Thanksgiving in 2005 because it was the last with my Gram. And, besides from just a few key people that are in my life now missing from that day, it was perfect. Gram loved holidays and she loved the family. So even though sometimes I just want to get through Thanksgiving and get it over with, I think it would make her happier if I tried to focus on the happy part of it and the good memories. Especially now that I have Michael and Sophia in my life to celebrate with me. Ugh, I get SO frustrated that they never got to meet her. And upset and angry. But there isn't anything I can do about it and I'm sure that she can see them and I can always share with them my memories of her and my Gramp. There are a lot of great ones! Including this great Thanksgiving day. I'm glad I put it in my blog....I won't forget that day for sure, but it's nice to have it here to look back on in the future. :-)