Monday, April 20, 2009

He is Risen Indeed

My mother is known for her wacky gifts - usually in the form of money. She gives "shirts" as monetary gifts, which means she takes a bill, irons it, starches it, and folds it impeccably to look like a shirt, collar and all. The kids always tell her they "just want shirts" for their birthdays or Christmas, and she dutifully obliges.

Sometimes she takes MANY bills and yes, irons them, starches them, and scotch-tapes them end-to-end, then tightly rolls them up. Like any good and holy gift, there's usually a big surprise in the middle, as in a Ulysses or a Benjamin, in lieu of a chewy, choc
olaty center.

"Gma (pronounced gee'-maw), you have way too much time on your hands," they usually say, joking of course. Nobody ever complains (except when she leaves and they have to pick all the tape off).

Though she's nigh on 84 years old, her medication list consists of one aspirin daily. She still drives her 1993 Jeep Cherokee up to her summer home in Wisconsin (which for tax purposes, is a "trailer down by the river") and is as healthy as one could be after sending breast cancer to hell 25 years ago and making her artificial knee a fashion statement.

But she talks now and again about "getting up a load to go" and is gradually gifting her special family jewels (not those jewels; Dad's been gone for years)! Gift-giving occasions are exciting, because you just never know what you're going to get, other than a shirt, of course.

On my last birthday, she gave me her opal ring - a gorgeous piece - made even more special by the fact that I clearly remember the day Dad and I went down to Stumme Jewelers and picked it out to give to her for Christmas. I was probably about 10. He got wise after he bought her a pair of black onyx earrings the year before, not realizing she didn't have pierced ears. Needless to say, he heard about that one. I got those earrings a couple of years ago. They had never been removed from the box.

So at Easter, I was a bit taken aback when she said she had an "announcement" and produced two envelopes, one for me and one for my brother.

"You know, I'm getting up a load to go....."

Yeah, yeah, what now?? I felt a little race in my heart. We don't do Easter gifts, so what in the world was she giving us now, there, in the presence of my entire family?

An could be stocks, bonds, cash (that she didn't have time to fold)...

Be still, my beating heart.

She handed an envelope to me, with my full given name written out on the front.

This was serious.

"I've talked with my financial advisor about this, and he thought it was a good idea that I give you this now." She's not a wealthy woman in the monetary sense, but she's comfortable, and perhaps she found
something after Dad died? I mean, something other than the turkey sandwich he hid in the dresser as he became more and more forgetful? Perhaps he had a stash that she had found??

"Open it. Hurry up. I'm so excited! I can't believe how smart I am," she said smugly.

The kids all sat with bated breath. Did I imagine the word "inheritance" being muttered? Slowly, I opened the envelope and carefully pulled out the single sheet inside. I opened it and stared. "What is it?" I asked.

"It's the deed to the cemetary plot your Dad bought when he bought ours. I want you to have it. Isn't it great? It's legally yours now!"

Thanks, Mom.

Because nothing says "He is risen" like your very own cemetary plot. On Easter, no less.

He is risen, indeed.

Tea tonight: Green with lemon and ginseng


Beth in NC said...

LOL! Oh no! A plot? Oh dear. Well, Happy Easter to you. hee hee

She is very creative with her bills though! What a cute grandmother to go through so much trouble. That is adorable.

But ... the plot? Oh my. ha.

Beth E. said...

I see where you get your great sense of humor and cleverness...the family plot...what a hoot!

Oh, and "special family jewels"...I laughed until I snorted! Not a pretty sight. LOL

gitz said...

!!!!!!!!!!!!! *laughing literally out loud!

Just don't be like my Grandparents... they are still living but have their headstone up already, just with the date of death left blank.


Candace Jean July 16 said...

@Gitz - Mom's name is on the headstone now. Yes, very creepy. I don't plan on being planted there. My ashes will be strewn from the "trailer on the river" - that's where my heart is!

So I guess I have a piece of real estate I can sell now!

vanilla said...

I love "little old ladies;" I am married to one, after all. This story is a hoot. The excitement, the anticipation. The opening of the envelope!

sherri said...

The deed is hilarious! I love her money shirts! How clever.

I'm liking this lady.

Helen said...

Maybe you can use the plot to plant vegetables....

Wendy said...

Is that the gift the just keeps giving? Um, wow. And just how do you thank a person for such a gift?

Nick the Geek said...

Seems appropriate as a gift for
Easter. Jesus got a gift of an empty tomb for God Friday and gave the gift of an empty grave for Easter. The grave is empty right?

Candace Jean July 16 said...

@Nick, as far as I know. But I'm not going digging to find out.

@Wendy - "Thanks, Mom, real estate is a great investment now."

Grace said...

This is my first time visiting your blog and, I must say, I'm delighted to discover it! Plus, it's exciting to run into another IA blogger! Way cool!

Alix said...

Your funniest post ever! I particularly like this:

(not those jewels; Dad's been gone for years)!


So, are you just dying to use the plots? Get it? Dying? Nevermind.

Nick the Geek said...

Reading some of the bad puns reminds me. Every time we drive past a cemetery someone has to say "here's some really good land, people are just dying to get this real estate." It is bad but my parents really got a friend going with it once. They really talked up this land and told them about how people were dying to get a plot there ... when they saw it was a cemetery they about killed my parents. Great story bad joke.

katdish said...

Did you have the heart to tell her that your ahses are going to shot into Mark Twain? (Oh, excuse me, Ntg - Samuel Clemens?)

Candace Jean July 16 said...

Oh yeah, I already told her that. That's when she said "Well sell the darn thing then, but wait until I'm gone." That's when Ron Burgundy decided to look up the assessment value....

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