August 22, 2011

For Grace

I've uploaded these images with thoughts of my Grandma Grace. She was shy, loved and grew beautiful flowers, made delicious cobblers and filled many of my childhood days with song. Her favorites were the old hymns and she was most happy when she was singing them while doing dishes. Her soft voice would carry out the little window over the sink to the garden, where rows of her colorful treasures grew.

When younger, she accompanied her singing with strings and there is a wonderful old picture of her playing her instrument in the garden, back in Missouri, as a teen. The instrument didn't complete the journey through the states Grandma lived in, while making her way to CA with my Grandpa and their children. Thankfully words are light to carry so the songs continued to spill out long after the strings quieted. 

Grandma and Grandpa lived a simple, self reliant lifestyle. They dealt with the things that really matter; getting by as best they could while raising six wonderful children. They suffered losses and challenges, worked hard and rested little. Nothing was fancy but everything was dear. A family gathering with the children and grandchildren was the best of times. A shady spot, iced tea and shared laughter was the recipe for perfection; followed by dish washing and grandma's songs. Her favorite was He Walks With Me. How could it not be, taking place in the garden with dew on the roses. I make a trip to the Point Defiance Rose Garden, in near by Tacoma, each summer and think of her and that last song we played in her honor.

I don't remember ever discussing the particulars of religion with Grandma. She may have attended a church before I was blessed to know her, but by that point, she carried her church with her in those songs. 

Had she asked, she would have found we saw things of a religious nature differently. It wouldn't have mattered. She was about heart and home and family. If you fell into one or more of those areas, you were bound to her by threads of love for life. If she was here, I would share this song by Iris DeMent with her. Comes close to my thinking and I have no doubt Grandma would have loved it.


Teresa Evangeline said...

Oh sweet friend. These flower photos are some of the best I've seen. They have soul, a quality lacking in many flower images. They are beyond beautiful.

Okay. In the Garden was one of my mother's favorite hymns and we sang it in church together along with my sister, Jane, Many years ago. It was also sung by everyone at her wintry graveside service in 2000.

And. Iris DeMent is another favorite of mine. I own all her CDs and this song is so nice. She is such a simple and lovely person.

I think we're cut from the same cloth... :)

A beautiful post. You say so much with the perfect words.

Sea Mist and Sunsets said...


Thank you so very much for your kind, kind thoughts. Precious to me they are.

I honestly wasn’t sure I would have any photo success on this recent visit to the rose garden. There was a breeze blowing that warm morning and everything was on the move. Alive. Couldn’t imagine I’d return with anything in focus, but patience and much clicking helped. The staff at the park and the volunteers who tend the roses really do make magic. I hope to get back once more before the season ends. Grandma lingers there.

Yes, the same cloth, it must be true. So many parallels.

Wintry graveside services need garden songs. Those old hymns were ripe with opportunity for harmony. Would love to have heard the three of you doing that song. Glad you can still replay it in memory.

And, Iris. You said it perfectly, “a simply and lovely person.” I never tire of her special sound.

Yep, same cloth alright, and I’m grateful for it. Hope you and Buddy are enjoying a sweet sleep as I type.

tiedyejudy said...

What beautiful images, Chris! And I relate to what you said about your Grandma... I had one who hummed hymns, loved to tend her garden, and made me delicious coconut macaroons to snack on when I was little! But the flowers you captured... I can almost smell the rich intoxication of their fragrance! Thank you for such a wonderful post!

Sea Mist and Sunsets said...

Hi Judy,

Coconut macaroons...yum!

So glad you have those sweet memories of your grandmother. Always makes me sad when someone tells me they didn't know any of their grandparents. We were lucky.

Thank you so much for spending time with this post and your thoughtful and caring comments. It was warm, humid and overcast here today. Would have been the perfect light to catch a few more shots of the hundreds of beautiful roses that reside in that garden. WIll post more if I catch them. :)


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