|This is how I will always remember Ollie!|
Your Great-Gramma, my Nana, died this morning.
I'm so sorry that you didn't get a chance to meet her, but let me tell you a few things about her, since she was a very special lady.
|Nana 'drinking' a giant Corona beer. In reality she never touched booze, but had tea all day long - with 4 sugars!|
She was born in England, the daughter of a butcher. Her sisters Pops and Edna stayed, but Olive (Ollie) met a dashing young Scottish man, and after the war, moved to the wilds of Canada.
|Bob & Ollie's wedding photo|
Your Mimi was born in Geraldton Ontario, (which is 'up north', but then I used to call anything north of Toronto 'up north', and now you were born in the Rocky Mountains!) one of 7 children that Bob and Ollie had.
For the record, you may be an only child. I do not know how Nana did it that many times. You will one day also be thankful for birth control.
Eventually they moved down to Crystal Beach, Ontario, but for many years wintered in Florida. (Which is part of the reason why she and Poppa both had skin cancer - we fair-skinned girls need to wear out sunscreen!)
Your Mimi and Ollie had many adventures together, just like your Momma and Mimi. I think that we'll continue this tradition with our own adventures one day!
|Ollie in Vancouver|
|An 'adventure' later on in life with Mimi|
I knew my Nana and Poppa always being in this house:
|In the summer...|
|...and the winter!|
and Nana was so very proud of her gorgeous garden.
|Mimi and Momma in front of Nana's rose bush|
It used to seem like a jungle to me, and now it seems so little, but is still so beautiful.
|Nana loved 'Daffy' the duck. He has a sunhat for the summer, and she made him a little toque for the winter!|
Nana was an artist and an amazing baker. Every visit was filled with home made shortbread cookies, lemon loaf, strawberry shortcakes, or my favourite, rhubarb pie.
|All of us cousins had at least one of Nana's knit hats. I still have mine!|
I used to love going to pick strawberries with your Mimi and my Nana - we would make shortcakes, jam, and of course, cheeeeesecake - which I still love to make, and eat!
|Nana's recipe, still one of my favourites!|
She made a lot of her own decorations, and you'll now grow up with having many of her creations on our Christmas tree, just like I did.
|Nana loved decorating the Christmas tree... and the whole house!|
|A few of her home made decorations.|
Ollie had a wicked sense of humour, even when feeling crafty:
|This hung on the wall in the kitchen for years - Nana liked to put her needlework to good use!|
And even decades after leaving England, she still said 'farted' like 'fawhted'. It was awesome.
She loved cheeky humour, and in her final years could watch the same episode of 'Two & A Half Men' over and over in the same day and still find them hilarious as the first time!
|Nana loved silly things, like this 'cheeky' Christmas card that your momma gave her!|
She was also pretty shrewd - your Mimi told me a time when my Poppa once may have been, ahem, visiting, with another lady (which is a no-no when you have 7 kids at home). Rather than accusing Poppa, or throwing a frying pan at his head (which you mother would probably do), Ollie instead had the lady over for tea, which was quite the surprise for Poppa when he arrived home!
That was the end of Poppa's visiting.
Even though Nana grew up in an age where you 'keep your head down and your mouth shut' (as she once told me), she still loved girl-power. When your mum broke up with an old boyfriend, and acquired a set of golf clubs (ask your Uncle Kevin about that story) as sort of 'payment', Nana was just tickled. She would ask me years later 'Do you still have those golf clubs?' 'I sure do Nana' I would reply, and she would finish with a nod and a 'Good girl'.
One summer when I was home visiting we even got creative with the Ontario heat wave. Nana knew how much I love rhubarb - so we cooked up some stalks with sugar in a pot, then made 'rhubarb-sicles' in the freezer! They were delicious!
We also tried to cook an egg on the sidewalk, but I guess it wasn't quite hot enough out - but I loved that she wanted to try!
My darling Ellie, I'm sad that you won't get to meet your Great Grandma, but I know she is looking out after you.
|Nana hard at 'work' cleaning a fan, and your mother needing a longer shirt|
Early this morning, I went into your room to feed you (since you're not sleeping through the night anymore for some reason), and your 'sucky' (pacifier), which I always place in your crib above your head, but out of reach, was missing. Now you're not moving around in your sleep too much yet, so I'm not sure what happened to it, but in my fuzzy 4am brain, I thought 'I'll bet that Nana has passed, and she's playing a trick on us'.
Sure enough I got the news a few hours later. And I still can't find your sucky. (Can I please have it back Nana?)
I look forward to sharing photos and stories with you Ellie about your Nana, and can't wait for you to build your own memories with your Mimi.
|Mimi, Nana and your Momma|
In the meantime I'll have a cup of tea and admire my golf clubs, and will smile knowing that both Nana and Poppa are watching out for us now.
|Nana, Poppa and your Momma, at about the age you are now. These are your new angels my Dolly.|