This post may have been more appropriate yesterday but reading Sarah's post from yesterday made me think of it today. Last December, my grandma Bertie died. She wasn't my biological grandmother but I consider myself lucky to have gotten the most awesome third grandmother a girl could have. She never married or had children and over the years she was enveloped into the large Johnson clan. Myself, my sister, and our cousins called her Grandma Bertie and she always had great stories.
Last Thanksgiving, shortly after I had moved into the St. Paul area she had to explain where she used to live. She had worked at First Grand National Bank and lived near Lake Phalen. Once, when there was a bank robber, she dropped the key to her cash drawer down the front of her dress. Having got the height gene from my dad's side, she was the only person over the age of ten that was shorter than me at family gatherings, even if I was the oldest grandchild.
From Bertie, I have a throw pillow from her old house, a savings bond, an egg timer that hung on the wall in her kitchen that I'd play with every year when we had Easter at her house, and a small collection of old books that had belonged to her, her sister, and her brother-in-law. She passed away at the age of 94 shortly before Christmas and her 95th birthday that would have been in January and we miss her dearly. Whenever a family gathering got a little chaotic you could always count on finding a quiet space near Bertie to sit down and talk for awhile. After only a few family gatherings since she passed away I already miss that.