My Papa and Gramma celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary tonight. I was unable to be there but my Aunt Alexis sent me a picture of the cute couple. Below is the letter I wrote them for the occasion.

Dearest Papa and Gramma,

I have so many memories of you both and I am incredibly grateful we lived near you. I did not realize at the time how lucky I was to have you there. And you were always there! If you weren't, we knew where the key was and we were expected to walk in. I remember when I learned you had a front door; I was probably a teenager by then and was stunned that not everyone came up through the carport and waved to you through the kitchen window before strolling in.

Gramma, thank you for taking me to the salon so I could watch you get your hair and nails done. Thank you for letting me make lists and go Christmas shopping for the whole family and meticulously keep track of how much you had spent on someone so we would know who else needed another gift so it would all be fair. Then thank you for teaching me how to wrap those gifts. Thank you for letting me have sleepovers at your house. Thank you for always having ginger ale in the fridge and cookies in a tin under the cabinet. Thank you for having a pantry with such a distinct smell that, when I smell it now, I am immediately taken back to reaching way up to the top for the cups that had all of our names written on them in permanent marker. Thank you for being a food pusher, because now I can claim it is genetic! Thank you for your generosity. Thank you for letting me be your favorite grandchild, although that can be our little secret. Thank you for your regular check-ins now that I am far away. Thank you for rearing my Dad into a great man. Thank you for spoiling me in a perfect Gramma way.

Papa, thank you for taking me to Scotland. Thank you for introducing me to morning rolls and those early morning walks in Scotland as I adjusted to the jet lag. No thank you for telling me my dad was "Made in Scotland"; I'm still scarred. Thanks for having an awesome water bed and cable TV. I watched so many movies on the Disney Channel in that room. Thank you for kissing me on the cheek, and sometimes the lips if I wasn't quick enough. I think you were inadvertently my first kiss and I loved that simple gesture of grandfatherly love. Thank you for teaching me how to make scrambled eggs in a microwave. Who needs to get a pan dirty?! Thank you for taking such amazing care of your pool so I could spend hours pretending to be a mermaid and frantically racing away from that creepy vacuum. Thank you for the delicious barbecue every family party. I still haven't had chicken as good as you made it! Thank you for measuring me against your brick wall; I always stand a little taller for you. Thank you for helping me exercise my vocal cords by yelling "just a little louder" so you can hear me. Thanks for singing Christmas songs and making everything else into a song. Thanks for being Papa.

I love you both, forever and always.

Emily Neil Merkley

No comments:

Blog Archive