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Springtime in the Rockies + Feeling Sentimental

Hallelujah, spring is really here! All of the snow and rain of the past few months have paid off and we’re enjoying stunning weather, blossoms, and scenery overall.

I’ve been driving up to these old orchards in the foothills near my home for the past few weeks, waiting for their blossoms to explode. This week they finally did!

I know I’ve already shared this quilt, but I haven’t been able to get a good full-body shot of the whole quilt, so I took it with me for some glamour shots with the flowering orchards.

If you missed the full story/post about my scrappy vintage-inspired log cabin quilt, you can find it here.

And here’s what the orchards look like without a quilt in the way. Still stunning.

While I was up there I enjoyed a great hike and walk with gorgeous views, including a new-to-me path along the base of the mountains.

On my walk I came across this handsome guy. I think horses have a thing for me. Plus, they’re such great posers.

It’s been a week with a full range of emotions for me. At the end of last week my grandmother suddenly passed away. It did me so much good to go for a hike in the foothills and have time to reflect and feel this week.

Here’s another view from a different angle. That pop of pink was even prettier in real life. My Grandma enjoyed painting and as a result, she noticed and commented on clouds more than anyone I know. For me it’s color that I notice and get excited about. Isn’t it interesting how we each see beauty in different ways? And now I pay more attention to clouds too, thanks to her.

Here is my Grandma with one of the quilts I gave her over the years. This was Christmas just over 2 years ago. Because she was an artist herself, she recognized the value and meaning in a handmade gift. But because she was not a sewer, she was always so excited when I gave her something I’d made. 

When she asked about my love of sewing she’d laugh and say, “Well, you didn’t get it from me!” But she’d proudly talk about how her mother could make anything – how her mother made all her clothing and formals for dances, etc. Well, I definitely didn’t get that level of skills either. Although, I did make the dress in the photo below (with help from my sewing teacher who put in the zipper) for my high school graduation, so maybe I did get some of that. A smidge.

I’m sharing this because it’s part of my story, but please don’t feel sad for me. I will miss my grandma, but at the same time we have already started missing her in a way for the past few years as her mind and memory have started deteriorating. No one was more frustrated about that than she was. She’d always been so sharp, loved learning – taking classes well into her 90’s. She’s lived an amazing, adventure-filled life. She would proudly tell us, “I’ve been to all 50 states you know!”and numerous other countries and locations including Jerusalem, Cambridge, the Kremlin, and sailing on the Nile.

She had some heavy tragedies in her life, but she didn’t want to be a tragic figure. She made the most of her life.

She turned 95 just a few months ago. She’d been a widow for over 48 years and most of her friends are gone – she was more lonely and really missing them. 

Last week my Dad spent a wonderful day with her, driving her to see the blossoms on the nearby University campus and other places that she loved. Her home health nurse came to check on her and her heart rate and blood pressure were perfect. That night she went to sleep in her home of 47 years (that she refused to leave for a care center) and didn’t wake up in the morning. What a way to go!

We had a wonderful day this week celebrating her life. It was much more happy than sad, much more sweet than bitter.

I’m selfishly sad that I didn’t get one more goodbye, but at the same time incredibly happy for her to have her mind clear and sharp again and to be reunited with so many that she’s loved and missed for so long, including her only daughter who suffered from extreme mental illness in this life. I can only imagine how many happy reunions there were that day, and because of my faith, I know that I’ll have my own reunion with her in the future.

One thing my Aunt shared with me when they came after her passing, was that she was peacefully in her bed, covered by the quilt that I’d given her two Christmases ago. That thought made me teary, but so happy (probably always will). 

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45 Comments

  • Reply
    Susan
    April 26, 2019 at 7:12 pm

    What lovely memories you have of your grandmother! How lucky are You! I lost my grandmother 31 yrs ago. She died on her 75th birthday. I still miss her, she was a happy woman who was loved by everyone. I have great memories too. What an honor to be beloved like our grandmothers.

  • Reply
    Heidi Staples
    April 26, 2019 at 7:30 pm

    Amy, thanks for sharing this with us. I very much remember that happy-sad mix of feelings when my grandmother died from dementia five years ago this month. It still aches, but knowing that she’s whole again and that I’ll see her someday helps. I’m glad you have that hope too, friend. Much love to you… xo

  • Reply
    kathleen
    April 26, 2019 at 8:37 pm

    Condolences. I understand precisely your sentiment of having been missing her over the past few years as you had to say goodbye to pieces of who she was a a time. I felt the same during my mother’s illness. Bless you, and you have been blessed, as was she, with creativity.

  • Reply
    Lisa
    April 26, 2019 at 9:07 pm

    Sending love.

  • Reply
    Pam M
    April 26, 2019 at 11:39 pm

    Sending hugs, Amy. I’m on my own bittersweet journey at the moment and I totally get what you are saying. Gorgeous quilt, BTW and that orchard in full bloom – spectacular! Wonderful photos throughout the entire post. Thank you.

  • Reply
    Liz Merckel
    April 27, 2019 at 2:53 am

    So sorry for your loss, what a wonderful lady she must have been. If there’s a good way to go, then under a quilt made by someone you love and loves you , is pretty good!

  • Reply
    Kerry
    April 27, 2019 at 3:35 am

    SIncere condolences and a last happy day for her. My grandmother passed away after I’d been staying with her for the summer. Memories of the fun times are the ones are the ones that stay with us.

  • Reply
    Lana Stewart
    April 27, 2019 at 3:42 am

    Thank you for sharing your grandmother with us. Just remember that she isn’t gone because you still have her in your heart and a part of your life. You are very blessed!

    • Reply
      Amy
      April 28, 2019 at 1:12 pm

      Yes, I feel that very much. Thank you, Lana. xo

  • Reply
    Martha Cook
    April 27, 2019 at 4:46 am

    What a testimony of grace, love and honor of your lovely grandmother. Her plate was full and happy with her family around. Loved reading her story. Lovely pictures.

  • Reply
    Little Quiltsong
    April 27, 2019 at 7:10 am

    Oh Amy – thank you so much for sharing this – what treasured memories! Makes me think of that song – “No tears in heaven….” Yes, what a day that will be. Love seeing your beautiful quilt against the pretty spring blossoms – new life! Sending sweet hugs your way!

  • Reply
    Janet Taber
    April 27, 2019 at 7:26 am

    This is such a sweet story of a beautiful lady, an inspiring grandmother who blessed her family with her life and love. You’ve written a perfect tribute, and the ending is the best of all. Your quilt comforted her, warmed her and wrapped her in love. It’s what we all hope our quilts will do, in the end. Prizes, perfection, praise for our work … NONE of that matters. What really matters is sharing our gifts. Your grandmother did that, teaching you to see things with an artist’s eye, and you do that, too, Amy. Bless you!

    • Reply
      Amy
      April 28, 2019 at 1:12 pm

      Yes, so true! Thank you, Janet. xo

  • Reply
    T Holzer
    April 27, 2019 at 8:17 am

    What a beautiful post, Amy.

  • Reply
    Candace Allan
    April 27, 2019 at 8:25 am

    Thanks for sharing this lovely family story. Beautiful to be friends as well as relatives.

  • Reply
    Barbara Neiwert
    April 27, 2019 at 8:34 am

    What a bittersweet journey for your quilt! But a memory you’ll hold onto dearly. Hugs go to you (((Hugs))).

  • Reply
    Melissa Reynolds
    April 27, 2019 at 8:35 am

    Sending prayers for the blessing of peace, comfort, strength, and strong, beautiful memories of your grandmother. Thank you for sharing!

  • Reply
    Deb E / CA
    April 27, 2019 at 8:43 am

    What a blessing to have such a wonderful person in your life, and to have enjoyed her for so long. Sounds like she fully lived her life and enjoyed it! We all should be so blessed to have at least that ONE person who really inspires you both in her life and her creativity! Blessings to your family – and I’m sure she’s loving her reunions with many friends & family in heaven!

  • Reply
    Karen Seitz
    April 27, 2019 at 9:28 am

    What a lovely post. I’m so glad you have such wonderful memories of your grandmother. I am lucky enough to have the same. One of my grandmothers had Alzheimer’s, and my mom is going through that now. I cherish having her close again so that we can keep creating memories for those of us close to her. Hugs from Ohio.

    • Reply
      Amy
      April 28, 2019 at 1:11 pm

      Karen, my heart goes out to you and your mom, right now. It’s such a difficult thing! Hugs right back to you. xo

  • Reply
    Adrienne
    April 27, 2019 at 9:29 am

    Oh, Amy, this actually brought tears to my eyes and heart. What a beautiful eulogy. What kindness. What love. I’m sorry for your loss. Who doesn’t know what that feels like and how hard loss can be?

  • Reply
    Sally King
    April 27, 2019 at 9:38 am

    A beautiful story about a beautiful life. Hugs and love to you and your family.

  • Reply
    Tina K
    April 27, 2019 at 9:38 am

    Amy, Blessings on you and your family. And, yes, you did get something of your grandmother’s talent, that is your use of color. Embrace the good, for it will never leave you.

  • Reply
    Cathy
    April 27, 2019 at 9:47 am

    Amy, this was such a beautiful tribute to an amazing woman! How blessed you are to have been so close to her. And a true blessing to slip away peacefully in your sleep. My heart goes out to you and your family. Now, let’s talk about the amazing pics of your log cabin quilt in the country!! Gorgeous!! So beautifu!,,

    • Reply
      Amy
      April 28, 2019 at 1:10 pm

      Thank you, Cathy. xo

  • Reply
    Audrey
    April 27, 2019 at 10:35 am

    Sending you a ton of hugs Amy. I love your story. And find peace in the fact that you certainly added a lot of sunshine in her life, as she did yours.

  • Reply
    Wapiti
    April 27, 2019 at 11:39 am

    What a comfort for you: you belover grandma passed away with you (and your quikt) in her mind!
    I’ld like to give you a big european (belgian) hug.

    • Reply
      Amy
      April 28, 2019 at 1:09 pm

      Thank you. xo

  • Reply
    vivionblog
    April 27, 2019 at 12:59 pm

    Love this quilt.

  • Reply
    Kathryn
    April 27, 2019 at 2:16 pm

    I usually read but don’t comment, but just need to say I love this post celebrating your grandma’s life, what a wonderful woman and I loved that she had your quilt with her as she went.

  • Reply
    hopflower
    April 27, 2019 at 3:47 pm

    Sorry for your loss, Amy. I bet you have some wonderful memories to carry you through the dark days. I know you are grateful you had such a lady in your life.But she is not gone either. She lives on in you!

  • Reply
    Linda B.
    April 27, 2019 at 4:16 pm

    Amy, what beautiful thoughts. Thank you for sharing. Your grandmother must have been so proud of you.

  • Reply
    Susan Shaw
    April 27, 2019 at 5:02 pm

    Your grandmother was, and still is, an important lady in your life. We can all tell that you have a special bond with her. Thanks for sharing some of your special memories with us. I think we all wish we could go to heaven in our sleep, so very peacefully. What a way to go!

  • Reply
    Raelyn
    April 27, 2019 at 5:18 pm

    Thank you for sharing about your grandmother. I’m thinking a lot about my grandma these days as we know the end of her beautiful life is also coming to a close. Thank goodness we know that families are forever!

    • Reply
      Amy
      April 28, 2019 at 1:08 pm

      Yes! Thank goodness!

  • Reply
    Brenda
    April 27, 2019 at 6:15 pm

    You have beautiful memories of your grandma. Thank you for sharing a part of her with us. I am sorry for your loss. But, happy for her to be happy and with the love of her life and her daughter.

  • Reply
    nancyt2003
    April 28, 2019 at 7:25 am

    My grandma has been gone for 35 years now but I feel she is always with me. She was a professional seamstress and quilter just like me and raised her children by herself just like me. I have her photo in my sewing room and talk to her all the time. Love keeps us all connected. My heartfelt sympathy though for your loss. xx

    • Reply
      Amy
      April 28, 2019 at 1:08 pm

      Oh, I love it. And I agree! I know they’re so aware of us, cheering us on.

  • Reply
    Pat Anderson
    April 28, 2019 at 2:34 pm

    Wonderful tribute…lovely memories!

  • Reply
    Susan Snooks
    April 28, 2019 at 3:12 pm

    Such a beautiful story and a loving tribute to your blessed grandmother. Your memories will surely sustain you in the coming days.

  • Reply
    Marla Varner
    April 29, 2019 at 7:35 am

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful quilt, photos and memories.

  • Reply
    Cindy Beal
    April 29, 2019 at 10:57 am

    What a beautiful tribute to your amazing grandmother!!!! Her spirit will always be with you. Sending hugs!!!!

  • Reply
    Monica Kostak
    April 29, 2019 at 11:24 am

    Condolences to you. Thanks for sharing your wonderful story. I only knew one grandmother for a short while and the anniversary of her death is this this Friday 🙁 Your are fortunate to have all this time with yours and the many memories made will live on…..

  • Reply
    Tricia Clayton
    April 30, 2019 at 8:54 am

    Amy I must admit I shed some tears reading your post. I too knew both of my grandmothers in this life and loved and cherish the memories. However, my sweet angel mother passed away at the very young age of 52 and I wish, oh I wish she could have watched my girls grow up and have their babies. Since my beliefs are the same as yours I do look forward to that day…oh how sweet it will be! Peace to you,sweet peace!

  • Reply
    Melanie Martin
    April 30, 2019 at 2:48 pm

    I’m so sorry to hear of your grandmother’s passing, Amy. After a nice last visit with your dad, it’s like she went on her own terms. The fact that she was warmed by your quilt at the end means, in a way, part of you was there with her. Hugs from California.

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