Thanks for the memories

I'm sad to say that my grandmother died in August.  It was somewhat sudden but she had all of her family with her, and she had seen a lot of family members over the summer.  She was 88 years old and lived a full and very happy life.  I wish I was half as positive as she was. 

I am very lucky to have wonderful memories of my grandmother.  That's really all I need - I don't need her things all around me to remember her.  It is nice that I received a few things that will always remind me of her, and my grandfather who died 8 years ago. 

Here are a few examples -

1.  Grandma's Needlework - My grandmother was a crafter in the truest sense.  She did every type of needlework imaginable (and unimaginable to me), and was a knitter as well.  I have a few framed pieces of hers in my house but one of my favorites is the sampler she did below which hangs at the bottom of the stairs in my kitchen where I see it every morning.  She made it to commemorate the purchase of our home in 2002 just weeks after my grandfather died.  It's classic and beautiful.  

2.  Grandpa's Favorite Chair - I always loved my grandfather's red leather chair where he read his beloved books (we have loads of those too) and I am proud to have it in my living room today.  When I sit in it now, it still reminds me of him and how I used to love to play on it and its funny footstool when I was a kid. I love watching my kids find new games to play on it now.  I know my grandparents would be very happy to just sit and watch them.

3.  Grandmother Clock - Of all of the furniture and things in my grandmother's apartment, the only thing that my brother and I both asked my mom for was this clock.  My sweet brother let me have it.  For both of us, our fondest memories of this clock are of Christmas Eve in their house in Cooperstown, NY where we occasionally spent the holidays.  This clock stood in the hall at the top of the stairs near the room where my brother and I slept as young children, and we listened to it chime while we tried so hard to go to sleep before Santa came!  It needs to be repaired although remembering how much it chimed, I might not mind that it no longer works!  Appropriately, it is currently in my living room next to Grandpa's chair.  I'm not sure if that will be its long term home but it works for now.

There were so many pieces of nice furniture left at my grandmother's apartment but we just did not have the space, and many pieces were also just not our style.  My advice to anyone faced with this dilemma is:

1)  Take only stuff that you love and would consider buying if it were in a store;
2)  If you are debating about a piece that you love because you cannot figure out where you would put it, take it because you won't have a second chance; and
3)  Remember that fond memories and love are in your heart and mind, not in physical things.