Wednesday, August 17, 2011

saying goodbye to grandma roper

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grandma roper's funeral was really nice and as you would expect the whole town
turned out for her viewing and funeral. she really was an influence for good in the lives of
everyone around her. my saddest moments were spent regretting that my children will never know her in this life
and won't hear her sweet laugh and learn from her example.
my laugh isn't nearly as great but i hope that i can try to follow her example
so they can learn from her through me.

beck was looking especially dapper for the occasion
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the pallbearers were my brother brandon, cousins justin, brek, jason and strat,
uncles doug and earl and my dad, ted. my brother ryan was unable to make it to the funeral
but otherwise these are all the sons, son-in-law and grandsons on the roper side.

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my grandma and grandpa roper have four kids: ted, doug, shauna and lanea
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blubbering and making a fool of oneself are genetic traits in the roper family.
as a result all four kids begged my grandma to not make them speak at her funeral.
they reminded her how boring it is to sit through a funeral and hear all the same stories
from all the speakers, who you can't even understand anyway because they're big bawl babies.
they almost had her convinced, but she's a persistent woman and it's hard to say no
to a deathbed request so in the end all four spoke and it truly was amazing!

my aunts were really clever and basically did a stand-up comedy routine together, each standing
at the pulpit sharing funny and touching stories about my grandma. they started by sharing
a box of chocolates and ooo-ing and aaah-ing over their favorites and how much grandma would
love to be eating these chocolates with them. it was really cute and really funny. they had little props
to share that represented my grandma's sewing, cooking, gardening, gospel study/knowledge and service.

speaking of service: my grandma was in and out of lucidity in the final week or so of her life and even suffering little strokes/seizures after which she'd often be only semi-conscious. however one day after having one of these episodes she suddenly became completely lucid and aware of herself and everyone around her and turned to my aunts and said, "don't forget to call and report my visiting teaching for the month. and be sure those last three sisters get taught!" in the final hours of her life she was magnifying her calling! the woman had SEVENTY-FIVE YEARS of 100% visiting teaching! and that doesn't just include visiting the women she taught each month, that means that as a district supervisor she also visited or sent notes to all the women in her district that hadn't been visited that month!! that's 900 months, people! the last three notes to the last three women in her district were sent out the day she died. impressive, no?

(mormon note: visiting teaching = in the LDS church each woman is paired with a partner and assigned 2-4 women to visit in their home each month. they often share a spiritual message and offer help, service and support for whatever the women may need. it's an awesome program that allows us to serve one another and foster great friendships as well.)

lanea, shauna, ted and doug
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although my aunts where tender and tearful it was the boys that really shed the tears,
and i loved every second of it. both my dad and uncle doug shared sweet stories and memories about their mom. my dad talked about her incredible example of obedience and her life of service and love. it was really sincere and heartfelt and although the tears were present they didn't distract at all, but just added to the love. my cousin strat's wife laura spoke on behalf of the grandchildren. she collected memories from all of us grandchildren and shared several over the pulpit. it was really cool to hear everyone's tender and funny moments with my grandma.

this is the best picture
dad and doug laughing together
that's probably my favorite face that my dad makes, laughing.
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our little family with grandma roper
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my sister kirstin and her family, john and ali, with grandma roper
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sarah and mads
i wanted a picture of brandon's family but couldn't round them all up
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especially after ted found this frog
and all the kids were in heaven playing with it
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i did catch mabel taking a little breather tho
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back at the church, after the burial i tried to get some pictures of the boys all spiffied up
since sundays are usually too busy to do so. but mostly i just got beck running away...

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and atticus throwing leaves at me
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since we were in idaho for an extra day we didn't have as much time in utah to hang out.
even so my boys were ready to get home! the drive home was mostly ok but for sure there were a few moments that i'd categorize as torture. the final stretch from st. george to LV is always the toughest. i thought maybe we'd hit a new low when beckett tore open the easy mac package we'd given him to shake as a last resort of entertainment...i know, some entertainment, right? but after ripping it open and showering the pasta and powder everywhere he decided to attempt eating the pasta. real crunchy. and messy. but at least it kept him from crying for a few messy minutes.

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the real low point of the drive, however, was when atticus realized he had left his blanket at my other grandma's house in st. george. we were ten minutes from home and i actually took a moment to consider driving back that night to get the blankie (two hours one way). i thought all hope was lost at ever getting atticus to sleep or be happy again until we could retrieve his blankie. luckily he was willing to take a substitute for a few days until i could figure out how to get it back. each morning he woke up and asked if we could go to the mailbox to see if grandma had put his blankie in there yet. luckily my friend julia (THANK YOU julia!) and her husband paul (THANK YOU paul!) live in st. george and paul in a firefighter in LV! so within a couple days he had stopped at grandma's a brought the blankie down for his next shift. i mean, serious life saver! atticus spent a few days talking about the firefighter that rescued his blankie!!

the sad blankie-less boy
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ok, we're finally winding down on the preston posts...
thanks for tuning in!

2 comments:

Allison said...

Sounds like a wonderful tribute to a wonderful woman. 900 months! Aaaah!

I totally relate to the easy mac incident with Beck. Story of my life is giving him random things to keep him entertained and often regretting it.

Crazy Lady said...

those are the cutest sweetest funeral stories ever. i'm super intrigued we will have to chat. I've often thought about what my own grandmas will be like, but sadly she led a very different life. your grandma sounds amazing