Grandpa Devar, recently deceased, spent much of their married life moving from dairy to dairy and farm to farm in the arid climate of Arizona seeking employment and means to support their large family of ten kids—6 boys and 4 girls. Sometimes things were rough; at one time Grandma even lived in a home with no electricity and no running water, but they did what they had to do and had some fun times doing it.
My uncles especially had their fun which often cause quite a ruckus and even at times and explosion or two. When this happened, Grandma Maxine would stick her head out the door or window and ask, “Is anyone hurt?” The answer was, thankfully, usually in the negative to which Grandma would reply, “Well, okay then,” and return to her many duties.
Finally when my dad was about 19, Grandpa got a good public works job at the city and found a two bedroom home to purchase. Grandpa added a third bedroom, for the boys, and after 20 years, my grandparents could finally settle down and raise their family in peace. This is the home that Grandma still lives in and the place I love for it’s sweet memories.
Grandma Maxine is quiet, deliberate, creative, and loving. Grandma knows all her grandkids and great grandkids by name and loves them deeply. Grandma also has a quiet sense of humor that only presents itself occasionally like it did a few days after Grandpa Devar passed away. It was a hard, sad time for Grandma, but at one point, as she sat in her living room, discussing the situation with some of her kids, her gaze strayed to a trophy hanging on the living room wall. It wasn’t a trophy earned by herself or Grandpa or any of their large posterity. In fact, it wasn’t earned by anyone we know. Grandpa had picked it up at Salvation Army and hung it on the wall. Always looking on the bright side, Grandma motioned to the trophy and said, “Well, at least now I can get rid of that thing.”
So now Grandma Maxine lives alone, but not forgotten. My cousin, Max, resides in the apartment connected to her home so she has someone to call if she needs him. My dad and mom visit her often as do all of her kids who live near by. She has recently taken up painting and tries to keep busy. I live far away from my grandma, but I love her and I’m so glad that I have an example like hers to follow.