Saturday, December 31, 2011

Grandma Maggie

Calvin's beloved grandmother, Margarette, passed away on December 26th.

Our daughter, Kathleen Margarette, was named after her and there is good reason why. She is a strong woman who loves with her whole heart, gives all that she can, takes care of her family and others in the community, and knows how to have a good time and enjoy hanging out with her friends. She is a faithful disciple of Jesus and I am grateful to have been able to learn from her.

What will I remember most about Grandma Maggie? Her eyes. Grandma Maggie had the most beautiful blue eyes. They told you everything you needed to know about her warm loving spirit right from the start. The first time I met her she gave me a hug with a squeeze that let me know she truly was happy to meet me and bring me into their family. As she pulled away and held me at arms length I looked into her eyes and clearly saw that she is the one who taught my husband how to love like he does. How many times can you truly say that the first time you met someone is the most vivid memory you have of them. The love Grandma Maggie showed me that day was exactly the unconditional love Jesus teaches us to share with one another in His name.

Grandma Maggie and Calvin at our wedding

Grandma Maggie and Grandma Kathleen (right) waiting for the wedding to begin

That look of love as she dances with Calvin's brother, Jermaine

As a sophomore in high school Calvin chose to move in with his grandma and she gladly accepted him into her home. Her most important rule, however was that even if you don't go to church with me - you must be in church somewhere on Sunday mornings. This led Calvin to the Four Square church in his hometown where he was baptized. Even though his testimony includes falling off the wagon in college, Grandma was by far a major influence in his journey to becoming a pastor today.

Thank you Grandma Maggie for the love and faith you have passed down through the generations.

Grandma Maggie holding Kathleen at Thanksgiving

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Christmas 2011

Kathleen's first Christmas. We stayed Christmas Eve and Christmas night at Grandma and Pop Pop's house this year. It was our last Christmas Eve service with the whole family at Bethlehem UMC - We hope Calvin will be appointed to a church as a local pastor after graduation meaning he will be leading church services somewhere else from now on. We so enjoyed the time with family and we're grateful for all the abundance we were blessed with this year.

Santa Clause did come to visit Grandma and Pop Pop's with wooden toy stacking set and shape sorter. Mommy and Daddy gave Kathleen wooden blocks, geomagnet toys and lots and lots of books. Grandma and Pop Pop were excited to give Kathleen a LeapFrog music table. And Aunt Brandy and Uncle Jason gave her a toy dinosaur to walk behind and ride. Showered with gifts I would have to say it was a big Christmas even though we are always ever trying to keep it simple and remember the birth of Christ is our focus.

Most exciting of all, Grandpa John dressed up as Santa on Christmas night as he has done for at least 4 decades now and Kathleen was able to become part of the annual tradition of seeing "Santa" make a special stop to pass out additional presents at our very own Fender family gathering.