I had a really hard time writing this post. G's Gramma Z passed away this weekend. She was in her 103rd year. Yes, that's right, she was 102 years old. Incredible! SHE was incredible! Never have I met a person with so much strength and determination; with so much faith and hope. But how do you properly honour a life that has spanned more than a century? She was born before the inventions of ball point pens and zippers, before microwave ovens, computers, and cell phones. It's astounding to think of all of the things that have happened in the last 100 years. In her lifetime, she lived through two world wars, crossed the Atlantic Ocean with her husband and four young boys to make a new home in Canada, and suffered the tragic losses of her husband and son in quick succession. Yet she lived life to the fullest and lived for every moment she could. I can't get enough of these old photos and wanted to share just a couple from her life - the top is one of her and her husband and the second photograph of her, at right, with friends. Both photos taken in the Netherlands. Below is a photo taken in Canada four years ago during the 60th anniversary celebration of the liberation of the Netherlands - still standing tall and strong and ready to take in all that life had to offer.
She was always ready for competition (she did not like to lose in card games!) and accepted any challenge that came her way. It was well into her late 90s, before her hands could no longer manage the crochet hook they held for so many years, that she made 100 afghans in one year to warm those in need. She was an amazing crafter and a true inspiration. As family gathered over the weekend to honour her passing, I looked around my home and admired the hand-crocheted doilies and the handmade socks and the knit stuffed mice she loved to make and lovingly gave to each grandchild - pieces of her that I will pass on to my children, her great-grandchildren. She is here and will never be forgotten.