My grandmother passed away this week-end. She was 96.
My grandmother (I have always called her Mono) always had something to do. I suspect she found a certain contentment in being busy and having projects to work on. She frequently baked, and also knitted and sewed. Every time we visited we would enjoy all her baked goods, but especially her cinnamon rolls. I also remember in the 80's when all the "Cabbage Patch Kid" dolls sold out of every store - I have a replica that my Mono made for me by hand. I remember that she and my grandpa would sit at their kitchen counter in Erie and do crossword puzzles together in erasable ink, with a dog-eared copy of a crossword dictionary on hand.
She was a very kind and gentle soul, but also had a keenness about her that served her well in her roles as school secretary and also as a mother and a grandmother. When she would give you a certain look, you would think that those blue eyes were able to see right through you. You knew that you were loved, but also that you weren't going to get away with anything, not on her watch. At the same time, she had an infectious laugh that she used often; she was always genuinely tickled by my grandpa's antics, not to mention by the rest of our family of comedians. Even when the rest of the family would play jokes on her when she was clearing the dinner table, her exclamation of "I'm not playing!" would be followed by gales of laughter from everyone.
We share some pretty great memories of Mono, and she will continue to be with us every time we share some cinnamon rolls and a nice strong cup of coffee.