Little did I dream the photo Tom took just a few weeks ago of my father and me on Daddy's 90th birthday would be the last one we would take of him. Perhaps you remember it from a previous post. We had just put the cake in Daddy's lap and before Tom could take a picture Daddy took a lick of the icing. (The evidence is on his cheek.) How I cherish that photo!
Until things settle down, I've decided to cut back on my blog posts and also on my internet newsletter for at least several weeks. I'm also going to postpone the release of my two new designs, the Hannah Cummins reproduction sampler and A Quaker Needlework Box. I hope you understand.
Tom and I left the next morning to head back home with stops in
to see his brother and sister-in-law and then to spend a day at Atlanta in Shaker Village . We got home late on Monday, November 7. Kentucky
The following week we got the word that Daddy was steadily declining, so on Friday, November 18, Tom and I drove back down to
, arriving there on the 19th. During the next nine days we saw a steady decline with Daddy. The last few days he remained in bed, and I would hold his hand and play music. Although I played the music pretty loudly, I'm not sure how much he heard because of his hearing problems. It didn't help that he had recently lost one of his hearing aides. Orlando
Daddy died the morning of Monday, November 28. He always said that when it was his time he wanted to die in his own apartment. Thanks to help from health care aides and hospice nurses (who came in the last couple of days), Daddy had his way, and we are all so thankful for that.
Here is the link to Daddy's obituary.
Daddy's funeral was Saturday, December 3, at the church where he had been Rector for 28 years. The service was truly a celebration of his life! While we miss him terribly, we know that he is now with Mother and other family members, and they are all at peace. When my aunt called last night, she mentioned what a wonderful story teller Daddy was. Perhaps he's now telling stories and jokes to others in Heaven.
Tom and I stayed another few days in
to help my sister and brother sort out the things in Daddy's apartment. We were surprised how much he had in his little apartment. Among other things, he had all of his tax records dating back to 1949 and lots and lots of photos. I must have gone through at least 40 albums and several bins of photos. What family treasures! We brought lots of photos back with us, but it will probably be spring before I get the chance to really study and organize them. We also brought back other family treasures, and next week a moving van will be coming with several pieces of furniture, including my mother's father's dresser. (I've promised Tom that no more furniture will come in our house until some pieces go out.) Orlando
Once we left
, we stopped for a couple of days in Orlando to see Tom's father. Then on Friday, December 9, we drove home. Thankfully, the weather along the way cooperated, and we got home late that evening. Jacksonville
We're now trying to settle back in, but it will take some time. I figured that by the time we got home on Friday, Tom had been home only 16 days (and me 18), since September 28. In fact, Tom has spent nearly three months with family in
this year, and I was there only two weeks less. Add in other travel, and we've been gone well over a third of the year. This probably gives you an idea of the turmoil we've had in our lives this past year. (Would you believe I haven't even held a needle in nearly four weeks?) Florida