My childhood memories are flooded with images of my Grandma.

I had a wonderful family, including an aunt and uncle whom I (still) love dearly, and cousins that I grew up with and played with and spent the night with, but my abiding memories, the stories I tell my daughter when she asks about my Southern years, are almost always about my Grandma.

I tell my girl the bedtime story Grandma used to tell me when I would spend the night. It's one she made up, about a fairy and an orange, and I know I'm not telling it as well as she did, but the love for her comes through that tale as my daughter listens. She loves the story almost as much as I did.

I remember eating out with Grandma and Pop at Cap'n D's. Riding in Pop's old green truck (just the two of us), or all of us in Grandma's Gran Torino. Grandma at her piano, her warble-y voice blending with the warm notes under her fingertips, her well-loved Baptist hymnal open in front her. Hiding under that piano when our parents came to pick us up because we were sure they would never find us there (every. single. time). Picking roses in  her garden to take home, roses heavy with perfume and beautifully open. She would wrap our roses in a wet paper towel and tin foil so we could carry them home.

This wonderful, crazy, loving, cantankerous, beautiful woman has left this place for her heavenly home. She is missed more than words can express. 

I love you, Grandma. I am so thankful that I was yours, and you were mine.

Until we meet again...