I remember, just married, at the age of 19 years old, making the decision to fully involve and love on P.J., Jess, and Christy's grandparents before even meeting them: Everett and Nadine Elder (Terry's parents).
Little did I know, they would end up being some of my all-time FAVORITE people on the planet.
They made the decision to move from Santa Cruz, California and come live by our family in Jacksonville, Oregon only a few years after I married Jon. They not only were (are) amazing grandparents to our 3 oldest kids, but were no different to Mary and Ben. They would attend ALL 5 of the kids' games and events. They would babysit and stay with the kids even while our being on a long trip to Israel. They would always have encouraging words for all of us. Papa tutored Mary in math and Grammy would sew Ben some Bible character clothing because as a little guy he would love to "act out" the Bible characters. Papa would give Peter his first computer and get him all set up in his room. Grammy would sit and talk so graciously and sweetly full of wisdom to Christy and Jessie.
Grammy went home to be with the Lord yesterday morning. She SHINED... up to the very moment she went to heaven. I can't help but think about just how GOOD God is to bless me with her. The love and closeness we shared is something I will treasure forever! I strive to be like her. That is, simply beautiful in every way!
I have so many personal memories of her. Here are a few: Many years ago when I still had 5 kids running around the house and I had lots of house work to do, one of those busy days I was cleaning everywhere in our house and around our little property, I noticed at the end of the day that the diamond on my wedding ring got loose and fell off somewhere. I searched everywhere and couldn't find it. Nadine had heard about it and said "Honey, I have a diamond I want to give you." It was a diamond she had had and insisted on having that put in my ring. How special do you think this diamond is to me?
I would come back from running errands only to find that not only had she spent a wonderful time with the kids, but she cleaned out my fridge as well.
She personally sewed a bunch of my maternity clothes, needlepointed "Mother of the Year Award" for me and framed it. And on and on I could go.
I remember feeling honored as she would confide in me as we had so many meaningful conversations. She was also a constant encourager to me all the time of all things God, Light and Beauty. She made me feel loved and appreciated in every way!
I love her and will miss her. Yet the reality of who she was here on earth and the impact she made is something I will forever treasure. And her being in heaven this very moment fills my heart with joy beyond words.