It is one of the hardest things I have ever done. I wasn't really prepared for the changes in Grandma, since I had last seen her. It is something that has affected me deeply, but somthing I am glad I did. I think we all felt very close, and very emotional.
On Tuesday 21st December it was Grandma Asher's funeral.
Our family drove straight to the church, where a simple service was held. I spoke, and then my cousin Sarah sang beautifully 'I Know That My Redeemer Lives', then an old friend of the family spoke too. The chapel was full. I felt very moved to see Grandma's coffin carried down the church steps and placed into the car by her Grandsons and Scott - all of them so tall (6'3'' and over, the lot of them!) and Grandma having been so tiny! Harry watching the coffin in the car said something like 'wow - a hundred thousand flowers!!' Harry was (and all the kids were) good at the funeral, and very interested by it all. As we were walking out of the cemetary, he said out of the blue 'That was really good!'
I think we all thought that really. No one wanted Grandma to carry on as she was, and the whole day of her funeral was peaceful, and a good day, full of good memories of her.
Tom and Harry with cousin Adam.
Two of my cousins, Sarah and Clara. It was really good to be with all our extended family!Photography by Amy (aged 18 months):
Tom with a baby = happy Tom!
We travelled back home again on the same day.
December 23rd. Trying to get on with some sewing, while being bombarded by this lot! (My sewing table is in front of the patio windows...)I was not very popular on Christmas Eve morning, because I enforced the kids to do a massive tidy up and clear-out of their rooms. I had been telling them to for ages, and they had been putting it off! As soon as it was done though, they were much happier in themselves, and then Scott took them off to an indoor play place for a few hours, while I did the last bits of housework and ironing. It snowed a little while they were gone, and I thought it was wonderful, and felt so Christmassy!
Lucy on Christmas Eve, being the tooth(brush) fairy for some inexplicable reason...
We had a happy Christmas morning just by ourselves, at home. The children were totally absorbed with their lovely new gifts. John and Hannah over came in time for Christmas lunch, which seemed to come together with ease. I certainly wasn't rushed off my feet, and enjoyed everything. A few of us went for a walk over the fields at the back of our house at dusk (wearing our knitted ear-warmers from Hannah's Mum!) Cold and lovely.John and Hannah stayed at our house for a couple of nights - lots of nice food, and just relaxing, with the kids being good. Everyone went to church on Boxing Day, except Jack and I, because Jack was ill. I made lots of beanbags, and we all (tried to) juggle when everyone got back.
On 27th December, we all went to Mum and Dad's house, and everyone else came round too - the whole family. Felt sad because of some news we had, but it was good just being with everyone. We also all opened our secret santa presents - this year's new experiment!
A few of us went for a walk along the canal - Lucy and I standing on the ice!After we returned home it was then time for me to get on with preparations for the Stake New Year's Eve party. Made lots of cakes, bought lots of food, sorted out games etc, and on New Year's Eve, Scott took the boys to London for the day, where they visited the Science Museum and watched the Imax space film, and also visited the toy department in Harrods. Lucy and I set off for the Stake centre at 4pm to get set up for the party.
It was a manic evening!! It went so fast, and I never stopped - I think it went pretty well, and lots of people came. We had a giant bouncy castle, a bucking bronco, and sumo suits hired out. I had a group of little boys come and 'call' at the serving hatch of the kitchen for me throughout the evening, to come and play on the bouncy castle with them (so they could beat me up!)
We got the clearing up done by 1am, and got home at 2am. I was aching so much! Lucy had a great time too hanging out with her friends from other wards.
So that is the end of 2010. Never a dull moment it seems! I have written my New Year's Resolutions, and am excited for a fresh start. Happy New Year!