Well, good morning to all. Hope hump day will get you through the rest of the week. Frigid here in the Chicago land area. Today I will be telling stories at the Gurnee Sunrise Senior residence as Mrs. Claus. Christmas stories for that warm and fuzzy feelings.
So, today's blog is dedicated to her. Our daughters met in grammar school some 30 years ago. They became Campfire girls and then Scouts together. I of course, was their leader in both of the organizations. Our daughters became best friends and were like two peas in a pod. Now, Barbara....my friend was a working mom. Her daughter was a later in life surprise and she also had 3 sons. We became close through the years because of our children. This was a woman who loved her family and worked very hard. She needed child care back in the day, and so she used to pay me to take care of her daughter. I took care of Angela, as if she were my own. The money that Barbara paid me went completely right back into the children. It allowed me to take them places so that they could enjoy the summer. The children would trade places from being at my home to being with Barbara. She was the kind of person that I had complete trust in when it came to my children. She was the sort of person, because of working was able to take the children to larger events than I was, so the girls got both sides of the coin.
One time in particular, Barbara took the girls to Wisconsin Dells for the weekend. They were scheduled to arrive home at a certain time on Sunday. This was back in the day when then were no other forms of communication except for a regular phone. Well, we began getting concerned after they were 2 hours late. Finally we received the call that they had just crossed the Mississippi River. We were like..."that is in the wrong direction!" We laughed so hard, because Barbara was not sure which of the ramps to take, so she decided to follow the beer truck. She landed up in the wrong direction. I don't think we ever let her forget that faux pa.!
Tickets to Great America were quite expensive for us back then and her son was having a family outing and included us in the event. We got tickets for a great price. Their van and our cars headed out to Gurnee and had the best day ever. I never forgot us all riding the log ride and getting completely soaked right down to our underwear...the kids didn't care...but Barb and I had a bit of a time with wet undies!
There were many times that she hosted my girls over for a swim in her pool. Toted them around as though her family now consisted of 2 additional daughters.
Conversations of spaghetti and dinners were always part of our lives. As was those cups of coffee and pop.
Barbara landed up in a nursing home about a year ago. Her children were quite amazing. They were with her daily. Always by her side until the very end. What a fortunate woman to have that sort of loving and compassionate children, but then again, they became just like their mom.
It is a difficult time of the year to loose someone you love. Not that any time of year is not difficult, but the holidays seem more difficult. She will be with them in spirit. Each time they will decorate their tree, or replicate a tradition that Barb had made for them...she will be there.
Barbara...all I can say is....I am grateful to have known you and better yet, to have you in our lives. You gave so much of yourself...time to rest now and enjoy being back in the arms of your loving husband Tom and with your parents. This is the circle of life that we all must take. See you some day at those pearly gates and we'll go over old times.