I am the oldest grandchild and thus, the reason for her most beloved nickname. When I was born, she decided that she wanted to be called Nanny. Nanny &Poppa. For the longest time, I didn't even know their real names. They were Pop & Nan. I even still address their cards & pictures to Pop & Nan Nicholson. :) And, Thankfully my other grandmas are not present, since I wouldnt want them to know that she was my favorite. My sister Nicole, lil brother Shawn, cousins: Kayla, Jake, Sasha & Jeff, & I will agree that she was the BEST grandma. My sister will agree that she was the BEST Great grandma. I have SO many wonderful memories with her and I'm thankful for that.
When we were kids, Nic & I would spend a month or so down in Arizona during summer break. WE LOVED getting to be there with Pop & Nan. She had such a fun personality. Most days we didn't do anything but hang out with her & had great time! She told the best stories, sang the funniest riddles & was a terrific cook, gardener & artist. I think I may get my craftiness from her. More recently I remember her saying she wanted to be a cute little granny. And she was. She always wore the most adorable hats & jewelry. As kids, Nic & I LOVED playing with her jewelry & dressing up (even decorating Pop a time or two!) The only time I remember her raising her voice to me was the summer I was 12 years old & we were staying with them in Page. I remember it so specifically, because my mother had written us to tell us we were going to be big sisters, that she was going to have a baby. In my pre-teen angst, I was pretty nasty to my mom. Nan put me right in my place & told me what a miracle a new baby was in the family. She LOVED babies & after we were married, kept bugging me that we needed more babies in our family! She was so happy when my children were born. Nothing made me smile bigger than seeing her & Pop down on the floor playing with my kids!
Nan has been present at every milestone in my life. I have pictures with her at my high school & college graduations, my wedding, the birth of my children & all the baby showers/birthdays/family gatherings. I have great pictures of her smiling & playing with my children. I will cherish those memories forever and I cannot imagine future milestones/gatherings without her. As some already know- the same day I got this awful news, we put an offer in on a house that was accepted. I wish that she were here to tell her all about it, and even though I know that she probably wouldn't have been able to travel to see it in person, She would've been so happy for us. She may have even painted me a beautiful picture to hang on the wall. Thankfully, I have other paintings she did just for me- a purple rhododendron because purple is my favorite color & another of a field of daffodils (also my favorite) with a little mouse hidden in the corner (she & pop called me A-mouseky when I was little). I plan to display those where I can see them & think of her every day.
I know that she wouldn't want us to all be sad today, so I encourage each of you to share a funny lil story or memory of her. She was SO very special and a one-of-a-kind, but we all already know that.