Today is a special day for a special person! It's my grandmother's 100th birthday!!
Me-Ma has always amazed me! For us grandkids and great-grandkids, she's always been a walking time machine. Besides being blessed with longevity, she's been blessed with a steel trap memory filled with vivid details. When she tells a story about the old days the listener is transported back to another era.
I love this photo from when she was a teenager. With her sister and friends, they would often visit the local photobooth and act like they were movie stars!
It's rare, but if she's not sure about a memory all she has to do is access one of her many scrapbooks, photo albums or diaries that she's kept since the 1930s. She's always believed in preserving the past, not dwelling on it, but keeping memories alive. (Anyone who reads this blog now knows where I get it!)
Me-Ma has always been a person who simply loves life and has always made the best of any situation. Many times the family has heard her say, "It's easier to smile than frown!" This attitude has served her well in raising a family, working at a doctor's office, volunteering in her community and even co-owning and managing a bowling alley. (See photo below!)
King Pin Lanes in Macon, MO.
This photo from when I was three is one of my favorites! (I would love to find that toy bus!)
Growing up, it was always a real treat when she came to visit or when we visited her. She usually had little trinket souvenirs from a her latest trip to give to us boys. Wow, a Mold-A-Rama alligator from Florida! Bicentennial maple candy from Pennsylvania! Disneyland Viewmaster from California! Plastic rockets from Kennedy Space Center! Sea Shells from the beach!!! I loved it when she brought stuff back from her trips and shared her travel adventures with us.
She made us a lot of stuff from sea shells and I still have my shell treasure box she gave us back in the 70s. (One of these days we might take a look at the trinkets inside!)
Travel isn't her only hobby. She's always enjoyed being crafty. This embroidered raccoon and squirrel hung on the wood paneling of my bedroom back in the 70s.
I'm a big fan of St. Louis Cardinals baseball. My whole family is! Our redbird love probably can be traced to Me-Ma. She cheers at the TV just like she's at the stadium and rarely misses a game. She became a fan when she and her mother would listen to the games in the 1920s & 30s taking notes and keeping score. Later that night when her dad came home from the coal mine, they would fill him in on what he missed in that day's game.
I could easily go on and on about how special she's been to our family. Last weekend when we had a big 100th birthday celebration, I was really touched to meet so many people from her community that let us know how special she is to them. I guess she's not just a Me-Ma, but more of a You-Ma!
That makes it even more special that she's my Me-Ma!!