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Friday, April 24, 2015

My Aunt Ann: A Tribute



My Aunt Ann passed on to heaven a week ago.

When I think of her, the first thing that comes to mind is her laughter. She laughed often, and she had one of those infectious laughs that soon had everyone laughing with her.

I also remember wonderful food smells. When we were little kids, my aunt would spoil us—my brother, her two boys, and me—with pancakes. One day, she told us she would make as many pancakes as it took to see who could eat the most. I think I won, but I bet every single one of us looks back on that day and thinks he won! My aunt always used cast iron skillets and griddle. There’s something about cast iron that lends more flavor to food. She made good old country fare.

I think of some funny things, too. She would chase after her two boys with a fly swatter when they did something bad. As far as my brother and I ever observed—holding our sides and laughing—they never got the spankings they deserved. They ran too fast! Oh, it was funny!

She loved me. We’re a close family. (My dad’s an only child, and my mother is one of three, so my aunts and uncles and their families are our family. I was the only girl for many years. Later, we happily welcomed my cousin Debbie, my little sister Ruth, and Debbie’s brother Shawn.) My aunt made me doll clothes. (Do you know how difficult those tiny things are?) She made a bridal gown, casual wear, dresses, and even pajamas. She gave me a doll, too. When our daughter was born, my aunt crocheted for her two dolls with happy faces. Becky loved taking the dolls’ hats off and putting them back on again. I was the “princess,” accompanied by her sons and my brother. We four did everything together! Most of my favorite memories growing up include her boys, my little brother, and our adventures. It was fun to be the special little girl, and it was great to be part of the gang.

My Aunt Ann loved her husband and her boys. My uncle was a sweetheart. He called his wife “Kiddo.” He loved her and loved all of us. He was the kind of uncle that every child loved. My aunt took care of him and made his favorite foods. He provided for her, and they built a lovely house up on a hill. She continued to live there after he passed away.

My aunt was a math teacher in a local public school for many years. Her specialty was algebra. At her funeral, lots of people raised their hands to signify they had been her students. She was tutoring someone the week before she passed away. She helped me understand algebra over more than one Thanksgiving weekend. My aunt was great at explaining math concepts. She loved her students, and they loved her. I remember going into town on several occasions with my aunt and cousins. It seemed like everyone greeted her!

My aunt wasn’t the mushy type. Far from it! She said things the way they were. No sugar coatings and no falsehoods. You got the truth the way she saw it.

She was a hugger. I would love to get another of her hugs. Maybe in heaven!

My aunt was a reader. She read everything from Grace Livingston Hill romances to Louis L’Amour, from biographies and missionary stories to new ways to teach math. I loved borrowing her books when I was at her house.

Aunt Ann was a dedicated Christian lady. She accepted Jesus as her Savior at a young age and strove to serve Him faithfully. She was always in church, took her boys to church, and she was an active member. Her fellow church people were an important part of her life.

My father wrote us about her funeral, which took place last Sunday. It exalted Jesus Christ and provided fond memories of my Aunt Ann. I am so very thankful for her influence in my life and for her consistent Christian testimony.

I quote my dad’s letter: “The long-time pianist there and Pastor W. both said that Ann had threatened them, ‘If you don’t sing “It Is Well with My Soul” at my funeral, I’ll come back and haunt you.’ We sang it.”
And Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.
*

I praise the Lord for my godly heritage. Part of that heritage was my wonderful Aunt Ann. Now, as the hymn says, her faith is sight.

“It is Well With My Soul” by Horatio G. Spafford, 1873.
  

6 comments:

  1. Lovely dear Sister Cousin, just Lovely

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    1. Thank you, dear Brother Cousin. God bless you!

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  2. My aunts and uncles from a godly heritage are passing away also, and the sentiment is the same!! Nice piece of writing and tribute.

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  3. What a special lady and such fun memories!

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    1. Thank you. She was indeed special. God bless, Barbara!

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