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Grizzly's Demise

This is a funny story yet painfully sad. Parental discretion is advised.

     It was a hot summer day in July. The deep south Robertsdale, Alabama was even hotter. My sister Sandy and I had gone there to visit my oldest sister Jeannie. As it happened Jeannie was sad as someone in her life had just died so she was quite tearful. We were doing all we could to cheer her up and make her smile.
     Jeannie is a gardener of sorts and always has the most beautiful flowers blooming throughout the yard.
She lived in a two story house and had a heavy wooden swing on the porch and this was our favorite place to visit. You could sit out there any time day or night and see something beautiful. Butterflies fluttered by, birds chirped, and chickens clucked. A cup of hot coffee was always welcome in the quiet country setting.
We sat and passed away hours reminiscing about happy times.
      Jeannie went inside and her giant black dog grizzly bounded around the house. Grizzly was one of many animals because Jeannie loved dogs, cats and birds, in fact when we would occasionally grow tired of our animals, not to worry she would gladly take them. Grizzly had belonged to my daughter Julie. Julie moved and could not have a dog so Aunt Jeannie inherited him. Grizzly had a thick coat of long hair and he smelled, well! he smelled like a long haired hot dog.
     We were standing out on the porch looking at the great outdoors when Grizzly bounded down the little dirt road to Jeannie's house and across the street. Jeannie walked out at about that time and I said to her, "You better call Grizzly, He is across the street." In a loud anxious voice she called " Here Grizzly, come on boy, Here Grizzly"  As we watched in horror Grizzly bounded back across the street. SCREECH, THUD,THUMP  and OH NO!  Yep you guessed it Grizzly gave up the ghost.
       We ran to the street with Jeannie getting there first. She picked him up and started carrying the 115 pound dog home. When we reached her we assisted her as she was hysterical with crocodile tears streaming down her face. She was so pitiful. We finally got home  and she informed us that we have to bury him. Jeannie lives on a farm with a pond and she picked out the most perfect spot overlooking the pond for him to be laid to rest. We gathered shovels and a pick ax and was about to dig the grave when we realized something bad. As I lifted the shovel above the earth and tried to sink it into the ground I heard a thud as my arms were jarred from the brute force. I looked at Sandy and in unison we said "SANDSTONE". Jeannie had went back inside to cool off and we just looked at each other for a minute while trying to decide what to do. We dug for seemingly an hour with sweat pouring off our brow in the 100 degree heat. Sandy looked at me as I was about to faint and she said "We can tie something to him and throw him into the pond, Jeannie will never know". Horrified, I went to look for some rocks. As we both doubled over with laughter we started back to digging. Finally 4 hours later we were able to put Grizzly to rest as Sandy's sons quoted the eulogy   "Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust, We loved Grizzly and Grizzly loved us.


As Autum Breezes Blow

Cool gentle breezes blow the brittle dry leaves indicating that fall is here.
The squirrels are frisky and leap from one branch to another, one tree to another
as they feel the freshness of the mountain air. They can sense that things are different.
The leaves are changing from a deep green to an array of many colors.
Red and Gold, Purple and Orange are seen across the hills starting at the top
and creeping down toward the valley as though an artist has painted each leaf.
Fall, the time of year when steps grow brisk and  children's laughter seems a little bit
louder, a little happier. I am reminded of the autumn of life. I had the privilege of listening
as a doctor told a story. My parents are getting older and the time has come that they need my help.
They took care of me all my life and now is my time to give back to them. He told us of parents
who gave him love, laughter and financial support. They live in Florida and he lives in Anniston, Al.
I am going to move them here. I am buying them a house and I will be sure at all cost that
they have what they need from now on. I believe that I saw tears in his eyes as he told the story.
I know you may think it is easy for him. He is a doctor and can afford this. I think of another
story similar in deed but this involves someone not so financially well off. It involves my sister.
Almost one year ago she opened her home to my parents. She is no doctor and was not able
to just buy them a home near her but she did something equally as noble. She moved them in with
her. Two people soon became four. Attitudes differed, personalities had to transform to become
able to accommodate the change. My mom cried, my sister cried, my dad cried. Sandy's husband Jimmy spent a lot more time outside. Since that time my dad passed over to the other side of the rainbow yet my
mom still remains in the care of my sister. Their lives are so different, more changed than even I
can comprehend. My mom who is the sweetest mom, the best mom in the whole world now lives
 in a new home. She left all that she had in this world and it wasn't easy.  Her hair is gray and her
hands are not as strong as they used to be. Hands which spent years helping others now need help.
As she tries to fix her long hair into the neat little bun my sister gently takes the brush and softly
brushes wisps of fine broken hair into the updo. This is a major feat because my sister has
short hair. She helps my mom to the store to shop as she tenderly pushes her in the wheel chair.
Mom can walk but she has fallen many times and it is safer this way. She takes her to the
doctor and makes sure she has all her meds but most of all she makes sure
that in the autumn of her life she can still have the happiness
she has been afforded by God above, a child who loves her. My mother has 4 children and we
all think she hung the moon. We all love her but as life would have it I work full time and my husband
is disabled. My brother works full time and takes care of his household. My sister Jeannie has a husband
who is not only disabled but bedridden. My sister Sandy quit her job as a nurse and made a tremendous
sacrifice. A sacrifice of love. So now as the air does become a little cooler and wind is crisp it makes me
remember to say a simple prayer. Thank God for love and family and that life doesn't really end with the
change of the seasons but it goes from joy to joy. It's makes me to know that autumn is beautiful in all arenas and that even as it changes slowly to winter with barren leaves and trees which become naked and stark in
the cold winter air life continues, also love and family, and the things which really do matter..