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Contact me at Mom25dogs@gmail.com

Sunday, October 07, 2018

My Mother's Funeral

My sweet, beautiful Mother died on September 13, 2018. As a genealogist and scrapbooker I wanted to document her funeral with digital scrapbook pages. We had a beautiful flower arrangement and I took framed photos of her and her family. I also made a flash drive of photos for the funeral home to play as people gathered for the funeral. Our pastor, Pastor Manning Strickland, of Legacy Outreach did the honor of speaking for her funeral. We had them play the music she had picked out. A few hymns that were piano instrumentals which sounded like her playing them (she was a wonderful pianist when she was younger, until arthritis affected her hands). It was intimate and sweet. But it was hard too. All of us were overwhelmingly sad but God not only enabled us to put one foot in front of the other but actually engage and appreciate everyone coming and the service. I have few memories of the funerals of family who have gone on before. My mind must have protected itself by blanking out a lot. I didn't want to forget this one. So I took photos, made notes and then scrapbooked to try to help me remember. My Mother deserved the highest honor for her exemplary life. She was a wonderful wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother. She loved her family fiercely and deeply. She is worth remembering and respecting.

This first one was about the flowers sent by her nephew and his wife, Robert and Amy. There were four siblings. Mother was the eldest, then Glenn, Judy and the baby was James. Judy died first of Diabetes and complications. Mother was close to all her siblings, but Judy was special as she was her sister. We were close to Judy and Cecil's sons, Kenneth and Robert, as we grew up. They live out of town and Hurricane Florence kept them from making the trip for the funeral. But they sent a beautiful bouquet of lilies and said it was Judy's favorite. It made Judy, as well as, her son Robert a part of the funeral and I wanted to commemorate it. (Flowers were optional with donations to charity being the other choice.)

This scrapbook page was to remember the flowers we, as a family, selected to honor her. They were beautiful.

I took photos of the table with the framed photos of her and her beloved family. I picked photos of her daughters and grandchildren to include because she loved us, and them, so much.

Mom always loved flowers. This gorgeous bouquet was sent by our niece's husband and his family. When the flowers dried, We each took the dried roses to keep.

In the bottom photo, Elaine is holding photos of her children. Luke is in the National Guard Air and is currently deployed to the Middle East. His wife came but, of course, he couldn't make it. Jenny's husband is in the U.S. Air Force and they are currently at Travis Air Force Base in California. Jenny wanted to fly in but her husband was being flown to Washington, D.C. for an awards banquet to honor him and his crew for 7 months last year for serving during the two Hurricanes (Texas and Florida). He and his crew had to do some logistics in loading planes of relief items. It kept him away from his wife and 4 children for 7 months. It was a big award but he was willing to miss it for Jenny to come to her Grandmother's funeral. But we told her it wasn't necessary. It was just too big a trip (it's an all day thing to get from there to here), leaving him with the 4 children and him missing such an important honor. They are being assigned to Columbia, SC and will be moving at the end of October. Luke should be home by then too. So we plan to have a family get-together in honor of Mother where they can all be there. But, we had them in our hearts during the funeral and Elaine is holding their photographs. The grandchildren knew how much their Grandmother loved them and we all knew it was a time of grief for them too. We knew Luke and Jenny wanted to be here and how hard it was on them not to be. They were in our hearts the whole time.

Uncle Glenn lost his older sister and I know it was hard on him. He's the only one left as James died 3 years ago of Parkinson's Disease. He's lost his whole little-boy family now. But his wife, Aunt Janis, lost her brother too just 4 days after Mom. They were there for us, so we went to her brother's funeral too. I felt so bad for them to have to go through it twice in one week. Aunt Janis is the one sitting with Dad in the bottom picture.

The picture of Mom holding one of their Pomeranians was the photo we all chose to be in her online obituary.

Here was her online obituary. I had written it many years ago and she had approved it. It's not only online but we also put her on FindaGrave.

Here are some digital scrapbook pages that I've made to make a book of Mom's life (I've done one for Dad too). This first one was her high school portrait. She had such high hopes back then. I found a paper she wrote in high school in 1955 and it was about the future.

Here she was as a music student in college at Mars Hill College. She met Dad there.

Here were Mom and Dad a couple of years ago at a 4th of July party. She still knew who everyone was then.

Here was her Easter picture as a little girl.

We have this portrait of the first 3 siblings (James wasn't born yet).

This was mother riding her tricycle.

Mom and Judy at the beach in the late 1950's.

Our Grandniece, Landry, Turns One!

Landry had her first birthday. Evans and Chelsea got some professional photos by Megan K. White. They were beautiful and I tried to do them justice with my digital scrapbook pages. She will never turn one year old again.

Here are some of the digital scrapbook pages that I made of her photos taken during her first year. This first one is Landry with her big brother, Cash.

Here is Landry's first Easter with Evans, Chelsea and her big brother, Cash.

Here she was at 11 months old.

Here is her 6 months birthday

Here is Landry at 5 months

Here she was enjoying the sunshine and listening to a vintage Fisher Price toy radio that had been her father's when he was a baby!

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