Four weeks

Today marks four weeks since Grandma died.

The time has passed in a blizzard of paperwork, phone calls, sorting, packing, and hauling.  As if to add to the surreal sense of time, we had a springtime siege of cold weather and snow, following a winter that was much milder than usual. Had Grandma been alive, she would have heartily disapproved of the turn in the weather. She liked things to proceed in an orderly fashion and was inclined to take inclement weather as personal affront.

One of the hidden blessings in all the sorting and cleaning out has been that we came upon so many reminders of her life. Photos from the decades of her life, including a newspaper clipping of her modeling a fur coat back in the fifties. Playing board games with our children. Writing the weekly menus in calligraphy so that she could stay in practice. Her favorite authors and movies. Her love of decorating for every possible season and holiday, including three drawers of candles in a range of colors to match the decor.

We reached a milestone yesterday. We turned her cottage back over to Good Shepherd Village so that they can ready it for the next resident. Grandma has been the only person to live there, as she moved in shortly after the community opened in fall of 2009. It was bittersweet for B and me to walk in for the last time, having stripped it back to the bare walls and floors, looking much the same as it did when we first saw it.

The window treatments and the dents her furniture had left in the carpets were the only visible reminders that Grandma had made her home here near us for her last six years.

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