The New Carpet at Grammy and Grampy's
Yesterday new carpet replaced G & G's very old and very stained blue carpeting throughout the house. The new is a lovely beige. It made the rooms look bigger immediately. Sister Judi and Mandy had bought a large rug to accent and protect the new from stains for what G & G always have called their "blue room."
I remember the first floor in that house at 8454 Oso. It was hard wood, warm in the summer and cold in the winter. The heat register between the living room and hall was lit with a match in the early morning and we stood on that hard wood warming our feet while it blew up my nightgown and I dreamed I could fly. We danced around trying to get at much warmth while keeping our toes off the hot grate and the four of us would fight for our corner of the heater in the winter. The floor always had dust bunnies and it had a beautiful shine. I remember Christmas's and laying on the floor before I could walk and slidiing along. Later with socks on I could slide on my feet. Then at about age five, the parents bought the braided wool rug. What an amazing rug. I doubt anyone in at least my grandchildren's generation have ever seen such a rug. It was really quite beautiful. It was like a Joseph's coat full of colors. And it was WARM. I was gone from home and long since married before they replaced it with the RED wall to wall. The braided rug wasn't even worn in most places. After that, the blue. But underneath, yes, there is that hard golden wood. Judi and I stood a moment in our old bedroom pondering a couple of things about the furniture there...she remembered a nail polish incident, and I remembered a pottying incident! So many funny memories in the house we grew up in!
Mom and I talked about what we would call the "Blue" room now that the carpet is no longer BLUE--the "Den" or the "Library." We settled on "Den," But I like to think of it as the Library. My Uncle Lloyd built the bookshelves years and years ago, in fact, I think Bobby and I were probably about four when the back bedroom was added on and the library and desks were added and it became the "boys room." It was a perfect "library" with desk space for two growing boys--one might have thought the parents emphasized education and scholarly research, but I don't recall seeing "the brothers" at those desks! But the desk to ceiling space for books were filled with books on trees, almanacs, agriculture, the wars (I, II, Civil, Revolutionary), biographies, encyclopedias, devotional books, political books, poetry, coffee table books, and much more. Since my childhood there have been many purgings and garage-selling, and giveaways of the books--but always, before long, the shelves are filled. Now Mom can't read or see what's there.
The other day she asked me if I had her old poetry book from her college days. She was sure she had given it to me. I didn't think so but promised I would look. She was hoping to get her hands on "Little Orphant Annie" by James Whitcomb Riley to share with the little "great-grands," as she calls them. (She always thinks of them, she wants treats handy just in case she gets to see them and she actually got out to See's to buy Halloween treats for them while the carpet was being laid yesterday--if they only realized how she thinks of and loves them! One day they will.) Then last night as Mandy and Jim and Holly and Judi and Fred and I were putting the furniture and knick-knacks back in their home, I took a moment to sit down in the new "Library" next to her in Dad's chair. I scanned the book titles on the shelves and there was her Poetry book. I jumped up and pulled it down, the fabric binding is frayed and worn, but her favorites are marked and I found "Little Orphant Annie." We called in the great-grands who were there--William, Rachel, Aaron, and Lydia. With the lights dimmed, I began to read the famous old poem with hushed and scary tones, and as I read, their Grammy quoted it word for word with me, with great emphasis on "And the goblins will getcha, 'ef you don't watch out!" What a sweet moment.
The sweetest moment came though when Jim was putting drawers back into the small credenza in the living room and a letter fell out. He picked it up and as he read he realized it was a thank you note to Grammy and Grampy from Andy. He must have been about 12 when he wrote it. He had beautiful handwriting and Mom and I were immediately taken back to those years while he was growing up and what an attentive grandson he was. It made me realize that Bob and Judy must go through those kind of moments on a daily basis and relive their loss that's never more than a breath away. It's a blessing that the memories are good and our hearts were warmed by that sweet moment admist the chaos of putting the house back together!
Here are a few pictures for my "Loves" who are near and far away...