Saturday, February 25, 2012

In Loving Memory of Peggy Heindselman

Good morning Digiland!  It is with a heavy heart that I post today in honor of, in my opinion, the most amazing and loving woman that lived upon this earth (except for my mommy :) )  Peggy Heindselman, as many of you may know from my layouts of her as "Grammy".  Grammy passed last Friday, February 17 just after her morning cuppa joe.  The day after my birthday.  In my heart, I would like to believe Grammy waited until my birthday was over before leaving this earth to go home to be with the Father.

How can one even describe her?  She was beautiful and classy, completely full of grace.  She was always, and I mean ALWAYS smiling and laughing.  A die hard coffee lover!  I've never known anyone as cheerful as her.  She saw the good in everyone and everything.  To her, every morning was good.  She had the ability to see down into the heart of a person and know that they were good, even if it wasn't so obvious to others.  She didn't judge and she loved unconditionally.  If you ever had a bad day, 5 minutes with Grammy washed it all away.  You couldn't help but be happy around her.

Though her aging body didn't let her do the things she once could.  In her earlier years she was so gifted at so many things.  She could sew ANYTHING.  One time she made a department store quality faux fur coat complete with lining.  You would have never known it was hand-made.  She could knit and crochet.  Although I could already crochet, I will never forget when she taught me to knit just a few years ago.  She cooked so well, that her own sons said there wasn't a meal she didn't make that wasn't delicious in all their years.  Well, there was one - LOL.... I remember us joking about it this past Father's Day.  My family moved into Grammy's house to help my parents take care of the home and to be nearer to help them take care of Grammy.  My parents had a room built onto their home just for her and took care of her full time.  Father's Day was the first time she came in her home again, since having moved in with my parents and since us moving in and updating some things in the home.  She LOVED it.  That day, we sat at the dining room table and my step-dad, Terry said "We have eaten a lot of good meals in this room.  There wasn't anything mom cooked that wasn't delicious.  Well, there was this one casserole dish..."  Grammy starts to CRACK UP! .... Terry continues "even dad wouldn't eat it!"  Grammy shakes her head no, and still laughing. Terry continues "but that was the only time.  Mom always cooked with love and took really good care of us boys and dad."

She was like the June Cleaver of mothers.  A mother of two boys, and always a kind word.  She was heavily involved in Boy Scouts with her boys.  She was also very supportive of their interests and talents even allowing Terry's high school band to set up jam sessions in the basement.  No matter the loud noise, to her it was making him happy.  She lived for her children.  She made it so her life blessed her husband's and her boys'.  It reminds me of Proverbs 31:28 Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her:

Another interesting thing is that she was an amazing master gardener.  She would tell you herself that often talked to her plants and flowers.  Everyone who ever knew her, will tell you that she could bring any completely dead plant or flower back to flourishing life.  On that same Father's Day visit last year, she and her walker took me on a tour of the entire back yard and she told me what each and every flower was and how to maintain it.  At 85 years old, she knew exactly what and where everything was in her yard.  She loved to be outside more than anything.  Friends of hers, Tom and Danette, told me a story at her viewing.  They said even if she would start working in the yard at 7:30 in the morning, she would stay out there all day either tending to the yard or just sitting and enjoying the great weather.  Often they would find her asleep in the late evening on her swing or at her patio table!

She loved to travel, especially with her late husband Johnny.  They were married in 1947 and married for 54 years when Johnny passed.  54 years!  That is love.  She loved to talk about Johnny.  She would tell you how good he was to her.  He loved to buy her jewelry, take her places, and just plain spoil her.  But what man wouldn't?  She was a precious woman.

I miss her so much that I can't hardly stand it.  Today, just like any other Saturday, I wanted to get around and go see her.  It is that moment where your brain "forgets" and you realize that is something you can never ever do again, is when your heart breaks in that moment.  I and my husband ADORED visits with her.  The moment she saw us, her eyes lit up and her hands reached right out, shaking in anticipation for us to get close enough for her to touch us and grab our hands.  Always eager for a big hug and several kisses as if it had been ages since she had seen us, even if it had only been the day before.  That is just how wonderful she was.  She made you feel like you were the best part of her day, when really, she was the best part of our day!  We would joke and laugh with her and just talk about her memories or plans of what she might like to do.  My fondest memories are singing with her.  The song we sang the most was Precious Lord, it was her favorite. Some others were Amazing Grace, Somewhere Over the Rainbow, It is Well, All to Jesus I Surrender, and sometimes we would make up songs being silly.  I loved the jazzy sounds of the 40s and sometimes, we would put on one of those old 1940s music channels on Sirius and she would tell us where she was or a memory from the time that song first came out.  I loved that.  I will miss that so much.  I will miss our slumber parties too.

My husband had a special place in her heart.  She gushed on him all the time.  He was her "big boy" and he was "such a good boy".  She would hold onto him every time he was near.  She always let everyone know how well Larry would take care of her.  He would never let her fall and always saw that she would get to her bed safely.  One weekend, when she had to be admitted to the hospital, he volunteered to be the one to stay with her overnight so she wouldn't be alone.  He stayed 2 nights with her, sleeping in chair, and bought her a Russ "pug" to sleep with, and she never forgot that.  She told anyone who would listen, all about that weekend and how he took care of her.  A few months later, he also bought her a beautiful ring with a purple stone (her favorite color).  She insisted when she was making decisions on her future funeral, on being buried with that ring on and her pug with her also.

There are so many stories I could tell about this sweet woman and I am sure from time to time on this blog I will as I am reminded of something she said or did, or some special moment.  For now, I will leave you with some of my favorite layouts and photos of her that I will treasure for the rest of my humble little life.  THANK YOU PEGGY HEINDSELMAN for the imprint you left on this earth in every life that had the pleasure of joining with yours.  You will never, ever be forgotten.  I will see you again one day.  I love you.

here she is on Father's Day, in her home again for the first time (pardon the boxes and piles, we had JUST moved in literally!)  She is playing with Mr. Biggs, our bugg mix.

this is her and her sister, the beautiful Aunt Carolyn at this past summer's yearly "Heinsyfest" - she didn't feel good not too long after this picture was taken and again, Larry rushed to her side.  Later on that night, I got to sing her to sleep :)

Larry and Grammy!

At "Heinseyfest" 2010, her son Terry took her on the dance floor to dance with her just like she and Johnny use to.

Veteran Support night at the local VFW.  My cousin Kim, of Kimmy Dean Productions, singing "Three Times a Lady" to her.  It made her cry :(

also at Veteran Support night at the local VFW.  Her giving Larry his kisses before we left.

"Heindsyfest" 2011, her and her youngest son Ted

just a cool late mid fall day, Grammy and I were sitting on the swing together and I wanted her picture.  After that we sat on that swing for a long time just holding hands.

our last Christmas with her just after eating.  Notice the coffee?  :)  She loved coffee.  We even loving teased how she went for coffee before she left the earth.

her sitting near the tree, watching the kids get their gifts.

and her and Johnny.  Just after being married in 1947.  GORGEOUS couple!

and here are some of my most memorable layouts of her:

Thank you all for reading and remembering with me :)  Have an amazing weekend, and if you have a sweet Grammy still in your life, pay her a visit if you can !


  1. What a beautiful memorial to an amazing lady Amber!! It made me cry it was so beautiful. Thanks for sharing parts of your memories of your grammy with us!

  2. I feel like I know her, Amber. She was quite obviously a well-loved amazing woman. I'm sorry for your loss, but what a lovely tribute you've sent her off with. Hugs!

  3. What a lovely memorial. So sorry for your loss. I was weepy weepy too reading this. :0)

  4. What a beautiful, lovely lady. You were so blessed to have such a special person in your life! So sorry for your loss. Sending soft hugs your way!

  5. Thank you all. We all miss her so terribly much. My husband and I took some flowers to her grave today and that was hard as well. I know time will heal and it will get easier. But her legacy will always stay with us. Thank you all for reading about her. She would be so humbled!

  6. Oh Amber what a beautiful tribute to your Grammy Peggy you have written hun. She certainly lived a full life and you have lost a special treasure. I know she is watching over you and Larry and so very very proud of you,