Monday, November 30, 2009

Memory Lane Monday

Aunt Irene was my maternal great-aunt and the kids' great-great-aunt, but she was more like a another grandmother to us all. She never had any children of her own, but she doted on my kids, especially the little girls. She loved them all, but with every pregnancy she'd say, "I hope it's a little girl!" especially after Scott, Brian & Conor were born in succession.

When Clare came along, Aunt Irene was over the moon, and Clare loved her every bit as much. Clare was an especially adorable little girl who had Aunt Irene wound around her little finger. There was nothing she wouldn't have given Clare if Clare had asked. When we'd visit, Aunt Irene would always slip Clare a little bit of money from her purse. I used to dress Clare with pockets just so she'd have someplace to put her stash.

It got to be such a habit that when we'd walk in to her apartment, Clare learned to go straight for Aunt Irene's purse. Aunt Irene would smile indulgently and say, "Go ahead." Clare would fish into the purse and sometimes come out with a five, a ten or a twenty, and Aunt Irene would insist that she be allowed to keep it. Of course, we're talking about giving that kind of money to a one-year-old. We always slipped it back into her purse, unnoticed, later.

Aunt Irene was increasingly tortured with dementia during the last years of her life. My husband Andy was her primary caregiver at the end, and the only person that she still trusted. She died in her bed March 13th, 2004. Today would have been her 97th birthday.

Aunt Irene & Clare


  1. That is a very sweet post. Beautifully written. She sounds like she was a lovely person!

  2. Nice pics! Your husband and I are viewing this at the KofC. I just installed wireless!!!!