My grandfather passed away a week before Eliana was born. I wouldn’t be surprised if his passing played a role in Eliana’s early arrival. Oma, his wife, passed away about two months ago. I am deeply grieved that they are no longer here. I wanted to share some of the things I will remember about these special people.
*Grandpa Jack had one of the driest sense of humor I’ve ever seen. He regularly made me laugh when we visited him.
*Grandpa Jack and Great Uncle Ivan made quite the comical pair. I always looked forward to hearing those two banter back and forth with Great Aunt Ilean and Oma.
*Grandpa Jack pulled apart, entirely, a 1937 Buick and then spent decades putting it back together again. I remember being a small girl and sitting in the car that may or may not have had a steering wheel at that point. Sometimes there was a seat for us to sit in, and sometimes not. Sometimes we could see through the floor of the car, and sometimes the car didn’t have doors. He loved that car, and he lovingly passed it on to my dad.
*Grandpa Jack was the one who turned me on to swing music. There is something special about good ol’ swing music. I remember driving in his 1937 Buick listening to swing music on his red radio. I remember being fascinated that we could drive in the car without seat belts!!!
*I’ve always had a respect for veterans, because Grandpa Jack and Pop Pop served our country.
*When I hear the Fanfare for the Common Man by Aaron Copland, I always think of Grandpa Jack.
*Grandpa Jack loved sending me about ten to twenty forwards at a time every couple of days. I’ll miss getting those emails.
*Growing up, I wondered if I’d ever have as many freckles as Grandpa Jack. I was a little confused about when our family name would show up on me.
*Strong and absolutely hilarious come to mind when I think of Grandpa Jack.
*Growing up, Grandpa Jack and Oma would take us to a sub sandwich place nearly every visit. I remember the pastrami being very good.
*We spend many summer vacations with Oma and Grandpa Jack. They lived so close to the ocean. Trisha and I loved that they had a white board for us to draw on. There were always markers for us to use when we came to visit.
*Growing up, we went to the Lions Club Christmas parties with Oma and Grandpa Jack. Every year, we brought home a mesh red stocking full of candy.
*Grandpa Jack and Oma had a cuckoo clock in their dining room that they showed us how to wind.
*Grandpa Jack and Oma had a small bird figurine that sat on their coffee table. One year one of us kids broke part of the beck. They were able to repair it!
*Grandpa Jack and Oma cherished their small white poodle Bridget.
*Oma was thrilled to hear that I was pregnant!
*Oma got her hair and nails done even in her old age.
*Oma loved telling stories. Before Kyle, his mom, and I went to Indonesia, we spent an afternoon with Oma and Grandpa Jack. She lived in Indonesia for many years. She shared with us it beauty and told her story of being in a concentration camp during WWII.
*Oma could speak Dutch, Indonesian, and English. I was fascinated as a kid when she would switch languages to talk to relatives.
*Oma was always bright eyed and gave wonderful hugs.
*Oma made bran muffins. When I was little, I didn’t like them at all. My dad loved them so much. Year after year I would try them to see if I could figure out just what was so great about them. I remember one year finding them to be quite tasty.
*Oma was the person who introduced me to strawberry and cream oatmeal, and I still eat it today!
*Oma’s 80th birthday party was quite a to do! There was wonderful Indonesia food that prepared.
*One of Oma’s last wishes was for family to gather and celebrate Easter together. Many relatives were able to make that special time shortly before she passed.
*Graceful and independent come to mind when I think of Oma.