Tuesday, June 1, 2010


We hit a big milestone in my family this year. My grandmother, aka Gams, aka Gigi, aka Alene, aka Mom, to various members of the family, turned 90 years old. 90 YEARS OLD! It's hard for me to imagine the changes in the world, technology and even within her own family that she has witnessed through the years. But through all the ups, downs and in betweens, she has maintained a grace, confidence and wisdom that we all hope to emulate in our own lives. She loves her family so much, and it shows. When you walk into her home, you're surrounded by photos of her loved ones from throughout the years, which is especially impressive because she has a very large family... 4 children, 11 grandchildren, and 14 great-grandchildren!

I was fortunate to have grown up across the street from her and my grandfather Pop and one of my fondest memories of our visits (when we weren't playing cards or grabbing ice cream bars from the freezer) is her telling the story of how she and Pop met.

It was during WWII and Alene was living in her hometown of Cullman, Alabama. She was asked by her parents to accompany her younger sister Mary to Washington D.C. to assist in the war effort. Alene was a nurse and knew she could help as well, so she and Mary started their long journey north to D.C. Alene was working at George Washington Hospital when she was tasked with starting an IV in a patient. She was having some trouble when a young, handsome doctor approached and offered to help. He started the IV, they exchanged pleasantries, and that was it. It was love at first sight. Alene and Edwin married a few months later and just as they were settling in as newlyweds, he was sent to France to serve as a doctor in the War.  She had become pregnant with their first child before he left, and so they wrote each other every day. When it was time to deliver the baby, she took herself to the hospital. He finally returned from the war and after that day, never left her side until he passed away at the age of 80. They were married for over 50 years.

There are a lot of lessons I have learned from this story and from just being around Gams. She has shown me what it means to be a great wife, mother and friend. I only hope I am able to do for my family and friends what she has taught and done for me. I will be forever grateful.

Here are a few pics of my gorgeous grandmother before her celebration. Can you believe she's 90?!

And here are a couple pictures of her in her younger years.

So stunning...

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