Over the last year, we have helped Mamaw clean out a ton of stuff.... mainly starting in the work shop. It brings me back to my childhood being out there. It smells the same, it looks the same, and some of our projects and paper are still there. The only thing missing is the big 6 foot something man piddling around trying to find something to build or fix. Man, he loved it out there. I've been able to reflect so much on all the details I had forgotten. And as we clean out the junk (no offense Papa), we all get a good laugh on what a great, detailed and goofy man he was to be around. We laugh because when he saw something on sale, he bough it and he saved everything: paint brushes and nails from the 70's still in the original packing, dusts masks by the 10's stacked up, operational and maintenance manuals from a shop vac he had in the 80's, retirement papers and cards, sketched out plans of clocks and canes, empty cans and mayo jars he planned on using for something- So much stuff out there and we didn't even put a dent in it yet, but so many memories. Of course it wasn't junk to him, he thought he could re-use everything. That the kind of person he was, turn just a plain ole can into happiness.
He lived a long and happy life. He had so many years of retirement and many many hours spent out in the shop. I'm so very thankful I was able to spend so many years with him and remember it so vividly. I'm so thankful God brought Josh and I home so I could spend his last years around the corner from him. I haven't had someone so close to me pass before and the loss is a great one. I have his picture by my bathroom sink. It brings me back a lot, happy and sad. It doesn't really get easier, sometimes I smile and sometimes I cry... this was the last picture where the kiddos got to see him. Love you always Papa.