Saturday, November 9, 2013

A thought about grandparents

Today we celebrated Grandma Malad's birthday--she just turned 90.

Time for birthday cake

(If you remember, we wrote about both of Lee's grandmas in this post where Lee was apparently in jail in Canada.)

We were asked to bring a family picture and a story about an experience with Grandma Malad. I can think of numerous occasions with her, but I think the thing that I want to write about the most is this:

When my parents came to the states from Hong Kong, they were leaving behind the comforts of family and friends for a strange new world. They raised 5 kids here in America, rarely being able to afford a trip back home.

Five kids in America

I remember my mom's mom, also known as Po Po, who came to visit us once. I don't remember much about the visit, but I remember not being really able to communicate a lot with her, she only speaking Cantonese and me only speaking English.

And being a dumb kid, I just remember thinking she was old! And a little scary.

So except for that one time, I never really had any grandparents in my life, or any other relatives nearby for that matter. Sounds a little silly, but I was always jealous of my friends who would have family reunions!

Getting ready for marriage

Then I got married to Lee, who has a huge extended family. Aunts, uncles, cousins, second cousins--heck if you're a Redd, we're related!

But the thing that I enjoyed the most when I married Lee was that I had grandparents now. I was floored that both sets of Lee's grandparents were alive and well, and there was plenty of hanging out together...

All the grandparents! when Grandpa Wyoming helped me pick apples from their tree after the first frost for sweeter apples so we could make applesauce,

...or when Grandma Italy organized a family reunion with all of our Italian relatives,

...or when Grandpa Redd (who is no longer with us now) asked me if kissing bearded Lee was like kissing a hairbrush,

...or when Grandma Malad introduced me to raw rhubarb for the first time when I harvested some for her from the garden.

It's been a real treat having grandparents around.


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