I spent the day in the hammock rereading another Madeleine L'Engle book, The Summer of the Great-Grandmother. When I read it the first time I was moved by her experiences but could not relate to them personally. This time around so much of what she writes about her mother hits home.
And it occurs to me that this is the first summer of my life without my grandmother. We had such good times at my grandparents' house when we were youngsters, playing badminton, running through sprinklers, all the home cooked meals (fresh corn on the cob!). I could go on and on.
I am also forever grateful for the times we shared while she was in the nursing home. The walks we all took, three generations of women, to the gazebo. We peaked at the hidden house, admired the flowers, and took picture after picture. Grandma used to hide from the camera, but she gave up as she reached the end of her life, so we have many pictures of the three of us crowded around her at benches along the paved walkways.
Pictures are what hold my memories together. Thank goodness my family is rarely without a camera or four.