Thursday, April 14, 2011

A Page From The Past

~My Grandma, Grandpa and Mom on the day of her wedding to my Dad~

I guess it's nostalgia week here at the bird. I can't tell you how long it's going to last so it might end up being nostalgia month before we know it.  Change does that to me.  My mom called tonight to let me know my uncle's daughter ripped down my grandmother's house to build a new one in its place.  In an instant I was overcome with sadness - dare I say grief -  and immediately transported back through time, standing in her kitchen by the old coal stove while she lifted the burners to stoke the fire.  My mom and her 8 brothers and sisters grew up in a one bedroom tiny house on the prairies in Canada.  They came from humble beginnings, but their house and family was always overflowing with love, laughter and acceptance.  My grandma was the kindest most generous person I've ever known and it pains me greatly to think I'll never step foot in her tiny home again.  For some reason I can't stop thinking about the wonderful, cold glasses of water she used to give me in the bubbled drinking glasses she pulled out from behind the dark yellow stained-glass cupboard doors.  It hit me tonight - I can never go back in time to that time again - as much as I know it and live it daily, it just really sunk in.  Those days are over - a thing of the past.  This aging thing is really getting to me...I'm thinking about mortality - mine and everyone else in my family - and time seems to have sped up exponentially.  Is this a mid-life crisis?  Is this where men duck and run to go buy a sports car in order to feel young again?  Whatever the case may be - I just love this picture of my gram (and mom and grandpa) - she was chic to the fullest in her lace dress and hat.  I have a feeling those really were the days -- I know they were.

48 comments:

Katie said...

Bring on nostalgia month, especially if scanned pictures are involved. I'm all for it and might even join in myself. It's a feeling of grief that your grandmother's house isn't there anymore. When my grandmother had to move into assisted living, she sold her house to the airport (long story), and when we drove by a year later they'd tore it to the ground, even though they'd never mentioned wanting to do that. It was a sickening feeling to see it.
Those were definitely the days. Keep scanning the awesome pictures.

this free bird said...

Oh Katie. My grandma passed away unexpectedly over 20 years ago. I think I'm realizing I just kind of stopped there and never really absorbed the finality of it all because I was very close to her and traumatized by the loss. Pardon me while I continue to weep the night away. xoxo - C

this might be a little tmi, but i just don't have it in me to wax on about shoes and clothes right now. maybe later, but not today.

Katie said...

If there's a good way or right way to deal with those kinds of things, I haven't figured it out yet. Maybe one day?

Josie said...

Carrie, I'm so sorry. I know exactly how you feel -- my grandparents' barn was torn down last year, and it's like a huge, memory-filled thing is just gone... Especially rough since my cousins and I used to sit in the hay in our dress-up clothes (including feather boas) and talk about converting it into a B&B. I very much hope that you're doing okay and if you have any more memories to share, know that we'd LOVE to read about them.
xo Josie
http://winksmilestyle.blogspot.com

the nyanzi report said...

Some times it good to let go of the past in order to move on. Maybe that house was not suitable for twenty-first living anymore.

Krystal said...

I know how you feel :( I loved being young and being taken care of by my amazing family - for some reason lately i keep remembering a lot of random things...sad and bittersweet!

Chic 'n Cheap Living said...

What a cute picture! Sigh I miss my family who are literally 9000 miles away. But it gets easier and digital cameras, Skype, and e-mail help!


xoxo,
Chic 'n Cheap Living

BeautyH2T said...

oh sweetheart, I am right ther wtih you, my grandad passed away a couple of months ago and we ar ein the process of selling his house and it is really breaking my heart. It feels horrible to know that part of my life, in that house is so very over and I cannot get it back. There is a sadness for so many things that comes with that feeling-so I am sending you a big massive huge hug :( Weeping the night away might be just what you need right now. Lots of love,

xxxx

PS I adore the picture your mum looks incredible- those glasses are so back in fashion now- they always know best!

xx

Dree said...

I am so sorry. It's heartbreaking to lose an integral part of your memory of someone, in this case your grandmother's house. I think it is great to see family and remember them in old pictures like this one - your mother and grandmother look so pretty!

Cara said...

awww how cute is she is her lace dress!

RosaLovesDC said...

Oh I am sorry about the news. I honestly don't know what I would do if the house where I grew up with Grandma and Grandpa was suddenly gone. Grandpa built that house and I have such wonderful memories.

Lisa Griffin said...

i have these moments and have found it's best to just feel it and let it pass
www.indramaticfashion.com

Closet Fashionista said...

I know what you mean...its hard sometimes to remember things like this, but it is also fun because then you bring up some great memories :D
http://www.closet-fashionista.com/

Danielle (elleinadspir) said...

I've bee feeling this way too. I think Passover approaching has me missing my Zade (grandfather, passed away a couple of years ago)...and missing LA and all my family there. Kind of sad I'm going to miss the big Seder (even with all the drama!) this year.

Cafe Fashionista said...

Awww...Carrie, I'm so sorry. Honestly, I can't imagine what you are currently going through. Tearing a place of dwelling of a loved one down seems like such a strong force of finality. Please let me know if there is anything I can do. :)

Nikki said...

Aww Carrie, thanks for sharing with us. This must be so hard to think about and go through. Your Grandma sounds so sweet and I know the exact feeling youre describing about being in her house. It sounds like some wonderful memories.


xx
Nikki

Annie said...

Awww Carrie, this is definitely really sad and I know how you feel. The good thing is that you will always have those memories and wonderful pictures like this to cherish.
p.s. I've been thinking of you too!! As you can tell, I also have not been blogging as regularly, but I'm happy to say that I feel like I'm finally not feeling bad about it and just trying to have more balance! talk to you soon :) xo

Courtney Erin said...

Love this - your description reminds me of my grandmother's 1 bedroom house in Peace River where she raised my mom and her three brothers and sisters...

xoxo ~ Courtney
http://sartorialsidelines.blogspot.com

hip hip gin gin said...

Oh Carrie, stop reading my mind! I was just talking about this time phenomenon with my husband last night. We both agreed that it is actually going by faster, too fast, much much too fast. I feel like it is the beginning of the year, but in reality it is almost one third over. That just boggles my mind. And when I think about all the things that I'll never get to do again, and even more things that you can do again but they'll never be quite the same, well....oy. This whole only one life thing can really bring me down, I have to honestly try not to think about it.

Long way of saying, I know how you feel, so sorry about your grandma's house, and that photo of your mom and grandparents is just beautiful! The way you describe your grandma and her family got me a little choked up, I can absolutely imagine how warm and cozy that little house was.

PursuitOfLLT said...

I'm sorry to hear that, Carrie. It's really hard to know you'll never be able to go back. Nostalgia can be such a wonderful thing but it can also be incredibly heartbreaking.

hang in there, girl!

Megan said...

i understand alot of what you're going through. except my grandparents house is still there.

when i was a kid, my grandparent's kitchen had this black and white tiled floor. i loved it. all of my memories and photographs had that tiled floor in the background. then one day they had the audacity to carpet over it. i was distraught. i know the floor is still there underneath, but it was hidden.

i know that was a stupid comment...but i feel for ya. good thing such great memories don't disappear ;-)

Collette Osuna said...

Hunnie....I feel ya.....I do the same thing at times...you are going to be AOK:)
I just got your email.....we are both on the same page.....!!!!
Hang in there..Im currently going through a mid life crisis myself:0

Torrie said...

I know. "Those days" when I was young, with both of my grandparents, putting curlers in his hair (or painting his toes!... He must have really loved me.), or sitting at their little kitchen table putting endless scoops of sugar on my cereal, or in his LA barber shop, playing indoor golf... Those really were the days.

I love your nostalgic posts, so if it lasts a month, I'm totally okay with that :).

Nikki said...

Sad news! I'm so sorry. Write down your memories and they will be remembered forever. It's hard to let go of the past, but we must keep moving forward. It's like having a wood bookcase and not wanting to paint it pink because it's real wood. But you would love it more if it were pink.

kimbirdy said...

oh, i'm so sorry about the house. i would definitely be grief stricken. sending you lots of hugs!

also, it's clear where you get your wicked style from - what a classy grandma!

ruthy ann said...

what a story! it's interesting...I've been thinking similar thoughts lately....

Leah said...

Your grandma's dress has been remade at American Apparel! I love how fashion goes round and round.
Thanks for your sweet comment, hopefully I can make it to India one day.

xo L.

Dancing Branflake said...

Oh no! Sorry about the house. That must be very saddening. Your grandmas was surely one chic lady.

Claire Kiefer said...

My first thought was how incredible your grandma's dress is. I have one very similar to it! One of the few vintage things I own (I'm not really a "vintage" girl). I'll have to send you a picture.

My dad owned a restaurant when I was growing up. I essentially grew up there ("Kiefer's Restaurant!), sitting at the bar drinking shirley temples. He sold it when I was in college, and I was pretty heartbroken for a while. It's hard to lose a place that you care about. I'm sorry you are feeling this way about your grandma's house, although I know you still have all your memories of her (and maybe, if you're lucky, that dress).

:)

Bog-Bog said...

Love the photo so much, I love to see pictures from the past!

Ashleigh said...

Girl you made me tear up! I totally feel you on this... not living near my family sometimes I get so homesick for my youth again, that sweet time of family and not realizing how much I'd appreciate certain things someday. (This is also why I love wearing my peacock belt!)
Heart heart heart this photo :)

Valerie said...

What a gorgeous picture of your mom and grandparents. I know how you feel about time speeding up. When did this happen? How is it already 2011 and halfway through April at that? It's hard to realize we can't go back. Yes, maybe we need to go out and buy a ferrari to make ourselves feel better. Or maybe a big vacation with white sand beaches and mai tais. Yeah, I think that's the answer.

xo
Val

drollgirl said...

i love your grandma's look, and this is a lovely and sad post.

i lost 3 grandparents a few years back. it was hard. so hard. and one of the hardest parts was seeing everyone pick over the belongings and then sell what nobody wanted. and then they sold the house, too. it was heartbreaking. time marches on. we get older. but some of this stuff is so sad. :[

Christie said...

I LOVE vintage family pictures. I find something about them so heart warming. Almost something from a story book. My grandmother often shows me old photos -- I could sit and listen to what she's saying for hours!

In Fashion and Style

Ms. Givens said...

I saw this picture and instantly said "Oh my look at her lace dress". So awesome. My grandma was my best friend for years.

la petite coquine said...

Oh darling, I think they call those the mean reds-you just need a little trip to Tiffany's, but Memory Lane is probably better for your soul and your pocketbook. I'm so sorry your (what the hell is your uncle's daughter? Your cousin once removed) didn't have the same reverence for your family's beautiful beginnings, but I hope you'll remember that while the house held lots of memories, they're all there with you, even if the house is gone.

xoxoxoxoxox, Lena

My Heart Blogged said...

Your grandmother looks so stylish in the photo, and your mother looks gorgeous. I can't imagine if someone in my family tore down my grandpa's, and grandpa's home. It's like the epicenter of our family. Christmas, Birthdays, and Easter are all held there.
My Heart Blogged

FRANKIE HEARTS FASHION said...

Look at your Gram working it in that lace dress...what an amazing photo to have and cherish. I can totally understand how this would get you down...it's like someone taking a piece of your childhood. Isn't it amazing to sit back and think how fast time goes sometimes? I was talking about this with the hubs last week. I feel like I'm running against a time clock and as I enter a new decade it just seems like its ticking faster. Thinking of you today C...xoxo

Lori said...

I love this post Carrie and I know exactly how you are feeling. My grandparents farm is a mere shell of what it once was. Last summer I wandered through, gathering keepsakes.... remembering and feeling very melancholy. I too think that those were the good old days. Hugs girlie ~ can you feel it?? xo

OneCraftyFox said...

Oh this is so beautiful Carrie. I absolutely love the way you have written this, I can totally picture your spunky self standing in Grams kitchen, and I know exactly what kind of bubbled glasses you are talking about!! LOL.

Your photo is a true classic, such a stylish granny ;)

Cristina @FUJI FILES said...

I know what you mean, I deal with this all the time... I can't believe it's APRIL. I can't believe it's 2011! Can everyone just stop growing up so fast!? Can my parents never get a day older than today?
Sigh.
But your grandma was definitely styling, I can see Tavi wearing that same ensemble!

xo Cristina

TheChambrayCountess said...

Change is hard, especially when it come to homes (bc you always have THAT to come back to) but at least you have the memories-- those are far more precious than any physical structure :)

heather yalin said...

aw, carrie. i love that photo so! i really do know what you're going through. aren't you tired of hearing that or reading it? my cousin sold my grandparent's house a few years back. and every once in a while i still get strong pangs of missing them, especially my grandpa. i don't know why him more often, but i think it's because i had a couple years more time with him, and by that time i was older and my memory was functioning better. let's just say my traumatic childhood losses really wreaked havoc on my memory. and of course all this stuff is going to rear it's head during your big move. i mean, you pack everything up and unpack it only to look at it in a different light. i'm sure you're seeing things you haven't really seen in years. that'll do it every time. sending you happy thoughts. love and hugs.

Peetzi Jen said...

Ohhhh Carrie! This one really tugs on my heart strings!! I loved my Gram so much. She was, hands down, the best person I've ever known. She passed away two years ago and it's really starting to sink in as of late. We recently sold her house (she lived there for over 50 years!!) and the finality of it all is overwhelming sometimes. Some of the best memories of my life were spent in that house. And knowing I'll never set foot in it again is just a bit too much for me. Life moves too fast sometimes...XOXO!

Marissa said...

I'm sorry to hear about your grandma's house! I know exactly how you feel- I get incredibly nostalgic thinking about my grammy. This photo is a fantastic keepsake to have, though.

indie.electronic.alternative. said...

this made me think of a song by metric called "grow up". it sure is weird getting older. i'm not afraid of it yet but it certainly is bizarre thinking about the fact that i'm almost 30 and half way to 60. but then i look at my 61 year old mom and say "yup, i think i can handle that." :)

Annie said...

i love old photos!

Fierce Pretty said...

Your mum looks divine! ... I love the glasses they are both wearing! They look like the ones I'm wearing right now... ahh fashion and its' cycles! :))

Nostalgia is bitter-sweet ... but if buying a sports-car will make you feel better, hell, buy me one too...You'll feel better x2. Hah! :))

Hope you're feeling fresh and good this week.. xo

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