Friday, August 2, 2013

{Friday Photo Bliss}

Bless my camera phone or I would never have captured this special moment of my Gata and the boys fishing.

This week we were taking care of my parent's animals while they were in Germany.  Sadly, my beloved 96-year-old German grandmother passed away a few weeks ago and my parents were attending her service.  Unfortunately my husband, kids and I were not able to attend because of the cost of last-minute airline tickets and my husband's work.  As much as I would have loved to be there, I have so many wonderful memories of the times I spent with my Omi in Germany and here in the US.

I really hated that my German father's family lived so far away, but over the years we spent so much joyful time together.  We spend many a summer in Germany and my grandparents would come and stay with us during our summer school break every few years.  We would usually take family car trips to Sanibel Island, Florida, and I still remember my grandmother rubbing my back during the long trips.

I still have an uncle and a few other relatives left in Germany, but now that both of my grandparents there have passed (my grandfather was in his 90's also) it is an end of an era.  I am so happy my parents were able to take some snapshots of my Omi and Opi's apartment before she moved out.  My father grew up there, and I really am sad that my boys were never able to see it in person.

We haven't had the money to travel to Germany since the kids have been born, but we have been saving up and our family hopes to go in a year or two with my Dad and Mom and visit my father's hometown of Bremen and their great-uncle and our relatives that are still alive.

My Omi had a wonderful life.  But death of a loved one, even when expected, still causes so much sorrow and in my case some regret that we did not see her in her last years.

My boys are fortunate to still have one living grandparent, Gata, who is  going to be 91 this August.  She lives in her own apartment and is poor as as church mouse, but still sharp-as-a-whip and one of the happiest people I know.  She even has a younger beau who brings her out to a buffet lunch once a week and goes to church with her.

Gata has always lived close to me and has been a huge influence in my life. She is the one who encouraged my love of nature and all outdoor things, and I remember all of the times we hiked in the woods along the creek and fished.  We never kept anything we caught; but in my Gata's words, would "spank it on the popo" and toss it back in again in hopes it would get bigger next time we caught it.  ;-)

This week we brought my Gata out to my parents house while we were feeding the chickens and dog and we decided to go fishing.  It was in the 90's temperature-wise, but my grandmother is amazing and she insisted on going with us and pulled up a chair on the bridge and helped the boys bait their hooks and even fished a bit.

This image is so special to me because my boys are getting to experience the same joys of outdoor life with my Gata that I did.  We are so blessed to have her in our lives.  My Omi's death was a reminder that I must live in the present moment and enjoy life.  Life is moving by so quickly these days that sometimes I am scared to blink because I might miss something important.

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  1. My condolences to you and your family. I too, lost my 92 year old grandmother a week ago.
    Peace be with you.

  2. What wonderful memories you have of your grandparents. I pray that your memories bring you comfort during your time of loss.

  3. What a beautiful, sensitive and full-of-love and life, post. My sincere sympathy Rita.

  4. I'm sorry for your loss. My grandmother passed away earlier this year, so I can completely understand how you're feeling. Thankfully you (and I) have wonderful memories to treasure.

  5. So sorry Rita, but glad you have all those special memories with your grandmother. I lost both my grandmas in the past couple of years and I miss them so much. Grandmas are the best!

  6. So sorry for your loss, but wonderful that you have such great memories

  7. So sorry for your loss. My Oma passed away many years ago, but I still have vivid memories of her when I last saw her in Germany when I was 3. I'm sure your sons will have the same good memories of their Gati.

    Now I am Oma to two little girls. Time does pass quickly!

  8. Sorry for your loss Rita and condolences to your family. How wonderful that the 91 year old can still be in her own place. The fishing looks like they're having fun. What wonderful stories you must have to tell your boys about your heritage. My son was based in Germany for 5 years in the Army during Desert Storm and my grand-daughter was born over there. :)