And of course the other favorite memory for all of us is celebrating Christmas there (starting with dinner on Christmas Eve, continuing with a huge family sleepover, then finishing with a Swedish pancake breakfast and spending the morning in PJ's playing with all the new Christmas toys). We will miss the house and the traditions that go with it but we also know that their house was just a place.
A few months ago (before knowing they were moving) I just happened to walk around their house snapping shots of some of my favorite vignettes...
And here are some pics from Christmas morning a few years ago...
Yes, that is "A Christmas Story" on in the background
As you can see from the above photos, my grandma has a great eye for antiques and has spent her life collecting them, too many to take with to their new two bedroom apartment, so she decided to divvy it all up between the daughters and granddaughters...and we were all happy to comply.
So after everything was sorted, we had a few days of "give-aways" where every one of us ended up with loads and loads of 'new' (old) treasures and great pieces. Here are a few pics of the piles of loot...
And all the women ready to pounce.
Here are some of the things that I brought home (and this was just part of the stuff from one of three days).
And some of my favorites (although its hard to choose because I love it all)...
A copper pot and tray that originally belonged to my great grandmother. She had the same initials as me (her maiden name, Elvira Martha Johnson, and my married name, Elsa Martha Johnson) so my grandma saw fit to give these pieces to me since her initials were engraved on the tray. The tray was given to her as a teenager when her family left her behind on a trip to Sweden and they brought it back for her since she couldn't go (kind of a consolation prize I guess).
Love this large glass jar
The special birthday plate
These dishes also belonged to my great grandmother.
I love this drawer piece (it was in one of their upstairs bathrooms). And the powder box was another one of my great grandmas from the 1920's.
This bench was in their basement and used as a coffee table by us kids on all those Sundays. Now I have it at our dining room table and just love it.
The bell that grandma used to ring when dinner was ready.
And one random thing that I got from their house that I love is this book "The Century Book of Facts". It is filled with facts about how things were in the world in 1900 and I could look at it for hours.
So we gathered together one last time to share memories, give thanks for our family, cry, pray together and celebrate many great years of traditions and many more to come.
And then the house was empty.
But like I said before, we know it is just a place. It's fun for all of us now to have some of the special pieces of their house live on in ours. And it has also been fun to see how my grandma has put together her new space...very inspirational for my own designing.