Sunday, April 18, 2010

Visit to Family in Virginia

Aunt Teen seated in front. Liz, Cindy, me, and Ruth Getting ready for our delicious turkey dinner at Cindy's House

We had a great weekend. We decided to stop in Roanoke to see my Aunt Ernestine who I affectionately call Aunt Teen. She is now 86 years young and still holds her own in a conversation. She is a wonderful person in so many ways that it is difficult for me to put into words what she means to me. Nine years ago, my mother, suffering from Dementia and on Kidney Dialysis, needed someone to look after her. My father had Prostate Cancer and was in and out of the hospital. We knew that both of my parents were not going to be with us much longer. I lived an hour away and had just started a new position at work. My sister lived closer, but also worked part time and had a teenager at home as well. We both were managing as best we could to deal with all the issues, taking turns going back and forth and many times spending the night there. When my aunt found out the situation, she insisted on coming and staying with them. She was a godsend and we were so appreciative of her help. She was not young and she had the appearance of being frail, but this wonderful lady really rose to the occasion. She did everything she could to make our situation so much better than we could have ever hoped for. She cooked, cleaned and basically ran their household. She was a wonderful friend to both my parents and her presence made their situation so much easier on both of them. She stayed there for over 2 months, and I don't remember ever hearing her complain about anything. You see, my Aunt Teen is not only a Christian, but she practices her faith on a daily basis, and in all facets of her life. This was not the first time she stepped in to help someone in a similar situation. This has been a way of life for her. Well, I could just go on and on, but I think you get the picture.

I was also excited to see her daughters (my cousins), Ruth, Liz and Cindy. They all live close by to their mother, and as she is now getting up in years this is a blessing to her. She has a really nice little apartment in daughter Liz and son-in-law, Blake's home. Blake and Liz have only been married for 8 years and this is the first time I met him. I am so happy Liz found such a great guy and if you ask me, he's pretty lucky as well.

Friday night we went to Cindy's house. Cindy cooked a delicious Turkey dinner and we had a nice visit with Aunt Teen, Cindy and Ruth. On Saturday we visited Liz at her home for a while and then we all went over to Ruth's to see her new apartment. Ruth just moved to Virginia a couple years ago from NYC and was excited to show us what a great apartment she had for a fraction of what she would have paid in NY. It is amazing to me how much less housing is in different parts of the country, especially compared to NYC. Later in the evening we went out to dinner at Olive Garden with Liz and Blake and Blake's kids as well as Aunt Teen and Ruth. Cindy's daughter and family rolled in on Saturday evening from NY State, so she stayed home and cooked for them.

Now we are headed home. We are staying tonight near Allentown, PA and it will be a five hour drive to get home tomorrow. We are really looking forward to being home again.


  1. I am very glad that you got to see Aunt Teen, and our cousins. We have been sooooo blessed to have her as an aunt. All I do is smile when I think of her and what she means to ALL of us. She is always a blessing. I saw Aunt Betty yesterday with Susie, and she is doing very well. She is also a blessing. Most people grow up without Christian parents and relatives. Thank God, that was not the case with us.
    I am also glad that my sweet sister is back home!!!!! I have missed you and Al. Love, Colleen

  2. I miss my sweet little sister too. Love ya, Colleen!