I made this when I was a little girl. I remember my dad taking my sister and I to a craft store, where we got to pick out the materials, paints, glue, and everything we needed. Kiki gave hers to Nanee and Poppy, and mine went to Grandma and Granddaddy.
For as long as I can remember, this hung in their kitchen. As I got older, I remember thinking it was so absurd. I forgot to paint the mouths on some of the bears. It wasn’t perfect. It didn’t go with anything.
It was also a reminder of the argument Kiki and I had at the time, over who’d give which one to which set of grandparents. We’d both wanted to give ours to Nanee and Poppy. I’m not even sure why. As kids, maybe we saw them as the “fun” grandparents. We had to be quieter at grandma and granddaddy’s house. We didn’t get to watch as much tv. There was no air conditioning (the horrors!).
In the end, I simply gave mine to Grandma and Grandaddy. It didn’t really mean anything to me, anyway.
But it meant something to my grandparents. I had done it. Me, one of 15 grandchildren, had made it for them. And they didn’t take it down until Marcus and I bought our first home and they gave it to us.
Now, I can’t imagine my house without it. Time has taught me so much. About love. Faith. Family.
My Grandma died on Thursday. She’s meeting my grandfather in heaven, of that I’m sure. And they’re so very, very welcome there.
But she…they…are missed more than I can ever put into words. There are no favorites anymore. There is only love.