I Remember Love


Grandma Violet as a child

Grandma Violet as a child

Violet and E. Merel Martin, my grandparents

Violet and E. Merel Martin, my grandparents
Grandma Violet and my father, Merel

Grandma Violet and my father, Merel

grandma Violet Fishing

Grandma and Grandpa Martin at my wedding

Grandma and Grandpa Martin at my wedding

I hope you will all indulge me a little bit today, as the post is not on one of my usual topics. Today was my Grandma Violet’s Birthday.  She would have been 86, but she passed away almost 10 years ago.The day after she died, I wrote a eulogy for her and even thought I used to try to get out of public speaking in any way possible, I never considered not speaking at her funeral. Here are the words I shared about her almost ten years ago:

Violet May Martin(Cross)

May 3, 1927-September 29, 2003

When I remember my grandmother, I remember love.

When I remember my grandmother, I remember three of my favorite recipes she used to cook: molasses cookies, pan bread and yeast rolls. I remember picking dandelions for her, when she found recipes for them.  She deep fried the flowers and cooked the greens. They weren’t very good, but it was exotic to me to cook dandelions.  She made dandelion wine. I never tasted it. She kept in a hidden corner of her basement and would ceremoniously bring it up for people to sample it. Even grown men only got a sip. It must have been potent stuff.

When I remember my grandmother, I remember love.

When  I remember my grandmother, I remember her love of the outdoors and fishing. I remember how she and my grandfather or her friend Nell would go fishing. She would even go fishing by herself. She never needed a man to bait the hook for her. She was competent in the outdoors.  She loved to hunt ginseng and used to dig it and sell it and dry it and use it to make tea. She loved camping and her and grandpa had a little camper, that she sewed the curtains and pillows for it. I loved going on camping trips with them.

When I remember my grandmother, I remember love.

When I remember my grandmother, I remember her love of quilting and sewing. She always had a quilt on the frame in the winter months that she worked on in the evenings. She taught me how to crotchet granny squares. We made candles, refrigerator magnets,  and Christmas ornaments out of plastic fruit. I can still remember the fruity smell of the wax we made into mushroom shaped candles. She was talented in art and painted flowers on her old trunk and other items. She loved antiques and carnival glass. She refinished the antique furniture that filled their home.

When I remember my grandmother, I remember love

When I remember my grandmother, I remember her green thumb and her love of plants. African violets and other houseplants filled her home. She was always giving plants away to people. She would plant daffodils, marigolds and tulips in her yard and was excited to see them come back every spring. Whoa to my grandfather if he cut them off with the lawnmower accidentally. She kept an orchard by the side of her house with apple, peach, blueberry, raspberry and currant bushes. She was always fighting with the African beetles to save out berries. Even when I moved away, she would pick them and freeze them for me.  She had a raspberry bush that only produced two or three berries a year and she gave them all to me. She, also, had a lemon and tiny orange tree in her house. How excited we would both get when they finally produced a fruit.

When I remember my grandmother, I remember love.

When I remember my grandmother, I remember hours spend playing in her jewelry box and listening to polka records. We loved to listen to the beer barrel polka. She would play the song “Season of the Sun” over and over for me, because it had my name in it. She loved her organ, piano and accordion. I loved to listen to her play her favorite song, “I go to the Garden” out of her hymn book. When I was little, many evenings were spend having jam sessions at my grandparents home. My grandmother, grandfather, father and other relatives and friends would bring out their instruments and play for hours.  Too bad none of us could sing.

When I remember my grandmother, I remember love.

When I remember my grandmother, I remember a a strong woman, who loved God and her family. She loved my grandpa. She told me stories of how pranksters came by on their wedding night and he scared them away by shooting his gun in the air. She told me how my father would escape from the house when he was a toddler.  He was the biggest joy of her life. She told me about her childhood and I could tell how much her parents and siblings meant to her. She always had time to listen to me and anyone who graced her couch. She didn’t go out much, but she loved to get company. She wasn’t perfect but she tried never to hurt anyone. I can’t remember her ever saying a harsh word to me. She was always humble and didn’t like pictures of herself. She didn’t think she was pretty, but she was beautiful to me. I wish I had more pictures.

When I remember my grandmother, I remember love.

When I remember my grandmother, I thank God for all the wonderful memories and I hope that she knows how much she meant to me. The last time I talked to her, she had been home from the hospital just a few days and she kept saying “It feel so good to be home.” I wish I could see her again, but I know she was tired. I believe she is with God now saying “it feels so good to be home” and I celebrate a life that blessed so many others with it’s gentle kindness. It was a life well lived.

When I remember my grandmother, I remember love.

Almost ten years later, I know something now that I didn’t then. I will always miss the person she was, but I don’t miss her spirit and soul. They are still here. I feel her presence often and she comes to me in dreams. I share this with you to remind you to make memories with the ones you love now. Enjoy today.  If someone you love is passed away, too, don’t forget that they are never really gone and you can still connect with them. As always with alchemy and law of attraction, just set your intention, relax and see what happens.

I’d love to hear any memories of loved ones or comments you’d like to share. To prove it, I’m giving away one of my Angel Card readings (see service page) to one of my commenters during the month of May. I’ll put everyone’s name in random.org and choose a winner to be announced here around June 1st. Then I’ll email the winner with the details if I have access to their e-mail or you can check back here around the first and e-mail me if you’re the winner.

Love and Transformation,




  • Nina Rao says:

    Michelle, that was such a beautiful tribute to your grandmother. How wonderful that you had such loving experiences with her. My grandparents on both sides were deceased before I was born, so didn’t get to experience a relationship with them.

    I do have a wonderful relationship with my mom though, and she’s been the person in my life who conjures up those warm, comforting, and loving memories. I wrote this for her last year and I’d like to share it.
    Thanks for this beautiful post and for reminding us to cherish the time we have with loved ones, and that even when they’re gone, they’re not really gone. And we have memories that will last a lifetime.

    In Case You Didn’t Know

    Mommy, in case you didn’t know, I love you! Just wanted to say in case you didn’t know.
    In case you didn’t know, I appreciate your loving ways, your kindness, your sweetness, your playfulness, your generosity and your joy.
    In case you didn’t know, I’ll never forget and always appreciate what a wonderful mother you were to us as kids, like a mother hen taking care of her brood.
    In case you didn’t know, you are my hero, seriously! You’re a strong, determined, courageous, hard working woman who still enjoys life even though life isn’t always easy.
    You were my soft, safe place when I was young, I thought you could do anything and weren’t afraid of anything, not even snakes or bugs; you protected us. I still think that, in case you didn’t know.
    In case you didn’t know, I think you’re a great human being to look up to. You possess qualities that others seek to attain their whole lives, and you do it so effortlessly. You laugh so easily, you are easily satisfied with little things, you appreciate beauty, you love with your whole heart, you care so much; you are open-minded, not discarding what you don’t understand. Little things can make you happy. You hold on enough for others to know you care, but let go even more to show your love.
    In case you didn’t know, one of my favorite things to think about is you dancing. And watching you dance with Cort is a memory I’ll always cherish. You dancing queen.
    At age 82, you still have a childlike quality for fun and excitement. Little things can excite you, like someone taking you out to eat or calling you on the phone and you answering with a lilt in your voice. It’s as though it’s all new to you. That quality is priceless, in case you didn’t know.
    Even though your education was limited, you know the things that really matter in life—How to be a happy, at peace and loving no matter what comes your way.
    So it’s for these, and many more reasons, that you may not have known, that I think you’re wonderful!
    Just wanted to let you know how I love you..
    In case you didn’t know.

    • Michelle Dobbins says:

      Nina, This is so, so beautiful! Thanks for sharing it here. What a blessing that you were able to share this with your mom while she is alive. I wish you many more precious memories with her. 🙂

    • Laura says:

      This is such a lovely letter! It gave me an idea of what I can do for Mother’s Day. I’ve written a couple of letters before, but this gave me some new ideas. Thank you so much for sharing.

      • Michelle Dobbins says:

        Laura, I agree! It’s written so beautifully. It’s great inspiration for all of us to share our love while the people we love are still here.

  • laura39lovesbug26 says:

    This is such a wonderful post and so well-written. It brings back such strong memories of both of my grandmothers. My father’s mother – Grandmom – also had fruit trees, a fairly large garden for a suburban area and berry bushes. My brother and I would pick them and I would eat as many raspberries as went into the bowl. To this day, I still love them, and eat them whenever I have a chance…obviously, not quite the same as eating a fresh-picked one, warm from the sun, but it brings back those wonderful memories – and so much more.

    Thank you for posting this and for saying that we can still connect with those that aren’t physically present. I believe that, but don’t always remember.


    • Michelle Dobbins says:

      Laura, I know there is something special about fresh picked berries. When I was a little girl I used to say I was going to marry a berry farmer. Now I want to buy some land and start my own berry farm.

      Thanks for sharing your memories. Wishing you more connections with those you love.

  • Evelyn My Secret says:

    Hi! Very touching story!

  • Mary Havens says:

    Michelle, what a wonderful tale of Love. The greatest part is to realize that they really don’t go too far away, for Love never dies. Within the last few years I have realized that I can communicate with those who have passed over. The one thing they all say is that they will always Love us and they are around. I Loved this message and all of your wonderful stories. We are all very lucky to have you in our lives. Have a blessed weekend.

    • Michelle Dobbins says:

      Thanks, Mary! What a wonderful gift to have to communicate with those who have passed over! Thanks for sharing the knowledge that they love us and are around. I’ve always felt it, but nice to hear it from other sources. 🙂

  • […] grandmother passed away 10 years ago yet she always remains a profound influence on my life.  Last week, I traveled home and I knew I would be going through her house, collecting mementos. […]

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