Grandma Georgie, Beatty Family Matriarch
it's just that she took ill a few weeks ago and had to go stay in the hospital for a couple weeks.
well now she is back home (begrudgingly accepting a little extra care) and while amy and the kids were in town we paid her a visit. i love the proud look on her face above; it tweaks at my heart.
grandma's house has been the same since i can remember.
like her pink bathroom fixtures, shell collection, and clowns.
all her little things, each earth-toned afghan, the little plants in her kitchen, the shag carpet, the stacks of photo albums... are forever part of my childhood and engrained in my soul.
she was kind of mad that while she was in the hospital they (my dad) moved some things around like a little hallway table so that she can get through more easily with her walker. quite the stubborn little lady! just like how she insists that the strawberries on her morning bowl of oatmeal be cut up just so.
it was good to spend an afternoon at her humble little sacramento home.
darin and i filmed her telling stories to start the mini-bio-documentary i want to make about her.
for a little old lady, she sure has energy for a couple hours of storytelling!
the kids loved playing out in the backyard. she has a friend who keeps her roses healthy and her lawn watered and mowed. i remember this bright red bottlebrush tree and all its accompanying buzzing bees. there was an old dusty pigeon coop from my dad's teenage years in the back corner of her backyard, half hidden by shrubs and trees. i felt like it was a secret hideaway. it kind of haunts me out there.
i look at these lovely little faces and think about time past, and ancestry and connections.
i think of this little lady 80 years ago. just starting out, fresh and spunky and full of love.
going to college for teaching. falling in love with the older brother of her high school sweetheart, who died at 17 in a tragic car accident coming down the mountain from yosemite after a senior picnic.
everything is meant to be.
buck was such a good husband. when she tells me that, she pats my arm gently, she repeats herself. "he was a wonderful man. a wonderful husband." i imagine their marriage full of kindness, peace, a little sparkle in their eyes.
their first baby was born in 1934, fred. my uncle who passed away quite a while ago from cancer.
the family grew quickly, along came uncle robert...and then grandma got her beloved daughter, my aunt mary elaine. my middle name comes from her.
as a baby i think mary looked like my older half-sister jeanette, and her daughter, my niece whitney.
what a sweet little california family.
after a few years, they were blessed with two more bundles of joy.
and two years later to the day, his little brother stephen:
now a mother of five kids, grandma g was still wearing pretty dresses!
i noticed looking through all her old photos, that she favored puffed sleeves and full skirts with cinched waists and square necklines. a style i am rather fond of myself.
the five beatty kids. who sprung forth many, many more.
my pops and grandma. kind souls.
these days she relies very heavily on him and he helps her so much. i love the jokey fun relationship he has with her.
one last oldie. i think she is a teenager here and this one is labeled "goe bake."
on the back someone (looks like a dude by the writing) wrote "the sheba of livingston."
for some reason that prissy little face, that flirty assigned nickname, almost makes me want to cry.
i am just happy that families exist, that our old folks tell us all about the years before we were born,
that we are part of intricate circles of love and life.
i will be visiting her regularly to record as many of her stories as i can. all these future generations of beattys need to know the lovely woman who started it all.
if she's still alive, i hope you soon get a chance to talk with and hug your grandmother.
white dress with rainbow belt: vintage from crimson and clover, same one i wore this night
red corduroy vest: thrifted $2.50
flower scarf: thrifted years ago
beaded necklace: cost plus imports
boots and earrings: gifts from marmy