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Life, Dominoes, and an Unforgettable Smile | Personal

February 29, 2012

This past week we remembered a life well lived. A life that touched so many others in an incredible way. A life of joy.

Amanda and I had planned to get away to somewhere warm at some point this winter, but this wasn’t exactly what we had in mind. Grandmother Jackson had had a rough time of it over the last few years, from a broken foot to a fight with pneumonia and a variety of other challenges, but she always somehow managed to keep smiling and laughing. This past week though, she fought a fight that it turns out she couldn’t win, and she will be sorely missed. Last Thursday we made the trip down to Mobile, AL to be with my Grandfather and other family, remembering and celebrating the life of this incredible woman. She was a sweet lady who loved life and whose smile was absolutely contagious. She was the one who taught us how to play dominoes, and boy was she a spirited domino player! We would spend hours together playing game after game of dominoes, and although it could get heated at times [because boy do we all like to win ;)], overall there was just something so relaxing and peaceful about it. Now Amanda and I get together and play dominoes with friends on a regular basis, carrying on the tradition. And what a fun tradition it is.

It was incredible talking with people about the stories and good memories they recalled, and one of the things that I heard more than anything else was that you never saw Grandmother Jackson without a smile on her face, of which I can vouch for as well. And what a beautiful smile it was and sparkling eyes to match. We looked through more pictures than you could count. Pictures from when she and my grandfather were just kids, from when Granddad was fighting in World War II, and pictures from their college years. Then there are the pictures of them together, which are probably some of my favorites. Pictures from their wedding and the 50 some odd years that followed. They had so many fun and exciting adventures together, traveling and seeing  the world and just living life with each other. I love that we will always have those images to spark the memories that continue to enthrall me with their beauty and happiness. It reminds me to take the time to document the present day of my life with Amanda, because someday not so long from now, those will also be old memories.

We will truly miss you Grandmother, but we will never let go of the wonderful memories that we have and how you taught us to smile and love with gentleness and a sweetness that can break through any rainy day.

{L} I’m not sure when or where this picture of Grandmother Jackson was taken, but I love it. {R} A picture of my grandparents right before they left their wedding 🙂

My grandparents holding my dad when he was a baby.

I love this shot of my grandparents holding me as a baby (at least I think it’s me, haha)

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