This is HPR's Nana. I tried to be the one to take the photo to have HPR featured in it, but Shmoo got his fuss on if I wasn't holding him. Not even Ms. Ella Fitzgelephant could placate him. Exhibit A:
But I though HPR should be in the photo with his Nana and Shmoo, so I took Exhibit C:
These were taken Memorial Day weekend (can you see the remainder of the pink eye Shmoo was kind enough to give me? And the scab on HPR's forehead from Shmoo clocking him with a picture frame? Biological warfare and blunt physical violence–this is our pacifist Quaker child?)
Nana is on the steep decline. She will probably live only a few more days at most. She's in her mid 80s and has had a couple of strokes in the past year. But she has remained at home, with hospice stopping in every day. (In fact, she made marked improvement after hospice started visiting. A testament to the power of social interaction.) She is fiercely independent. She raised HPR's dad and uncle while taking care of HPR's grandfather, who was in a wheelchair with MS.
I have a couple of favorite Nana stories. The first is that she joined the Navy during WWII on a sort of a dare. Someone said to her "you're too little–they'll never take you!" So she had to prove him wrong, and did.
The second is how she tells of acquiring a prized possession, her dishwasher. "My husband said 'over my dead body.' . . . [pause of perfect comedic timing] So he died, and I did."
Until recently, Nana mowed and weeded her lawn and snowblew (showblowed?) her driveway as well as her neighbor's. At the end of the day she would sit in her 3-season porch, smoke a cigarette, and drink a can of cheap beer. She made mountains of perogies (the best I have ever tasted) and gave most of them away. I ate so many of her perogies when I was pregnant with Shmoo that I think we should tattoo "made by (great-)Nana" on the back of his neck.
Rest well, Nana.
UPDATE! July 5: Nana is doing much better. Turns out it was probably a stomach flu. Also, I found out from HPR that Nana was in the Navy, not the Army, and have edited the text accordingly.