As many of you may know, I lost my “Papa” in October. It was a hard time for my family. Granny and Papa are the glue to this family. We Bartons/Vogans/Howarths are a strong group. We have been a family that has shared every bit of life together.
As far back as I can remember, all of our families have shared the holidays together. I remember being a small kid living back on Union Hills and I was woke up by my mom the night of Christmas saying, “Boys come here, I heard something downstairs.” We woke up and went with my mom and slowly we realized that Santa was putting presents under the Christmas tree. We both got soo excited and could barely hold our excitement. Later of course we realized that it was Papa. The old guy had pulled one over on us. I never did ask, but I’m pretty sure he visited a few houses that year. What a guy. Then of course we have Thanksgiving. Even to this day, I look forward to sharing Thanksgiving with all my family. Of course the highlight, besides the plethora of food, is the “tossing of the dinner rolls”. We all know the routine of course. The Ladies cook, and the men clean. I’ve never really liked that rule but that brings me to my next point. The values instilled in this family.
As we all knew, the Bartons have grown up as a farming family. I’ve realized now as an adult, what this has translated to. We Bartons are a hardworking family and very down to earth. Jerry, Brenda, Sheila, Rick and of course my pop, are the most down to earth and solid people I’ve met. I absolutely love my family and wouldn’t trade them for the world. I’m not forgetting the spouses either, I love EVERYONE of you. Now, when talking about an entire family being down to earth and amazing, you have to look at the parents.
Granny and Papa are the 2 single most amazing people in the world. As far as I know, Papa was a “No Non-sense” kind of guy, which I’m sure is the reason why Jerry was their first son. Jerry had all the non-sense in the family so having 4 more kids was no problem. Papa reminds me of Jerry. He didn’t take guff from anyone. Now Papa also had a storytelling side of him. I remember Papa telling story after story of all his golf experiences and his times on the farm and when I was a kid and I took everyone of them as fact. Now I’m not so sure. I think he stretched the truth a bit, but regardless, I tried to egg him on to tell more stories. Papa and I had a bond. We were golfing buddies. I can’t tell you how much I looked forward to going golfing with the old man. I learned so much from him. Putting from the bunker, “rabbit must have taken my ball, I’ll just drop here”, and of course the infamous the “sun city” lie. I learned alot from the old guy. I miss him dearly but I know I’ll see him again.
That leaves Granny, the reason I’m writing this. This is the model woman. As far as I know, “Oh Sugar” is her choice of cuss words. I’m pretty sure that’s the worst thing she’s ever said. When we all heard about someone stealing $40 out of her wallet, I’m pretty sure most of our family was ready to march down to that hospital and start interrogating most of the people there. You might as well have stolen from the Pope. There isn’t a more innocent and sweet person in the world than my Granny. She’s a gem. I know our whole family is heart-broken over the loss of Papa, but I think we all can forget about our grief, because Granny, Papa’s wife of more than 60 years, is standing strong. She is the rock of this family. She is a God loving, community serving, hostess with the mostest, potato salad mastering, angel on this earth. She has set the bar high, and I think that she is what most women should strive for. My Granny will forever be remembered in the highest respects. I’m ecstatic to see her again, and I’m going to get a great big hug from her. I have so much love and respect for the women, i’m pretty sure she could go rob a bank, and our entire family would take the fall for her.
Granny, we all love you and you are the rock in which we lean on, and our model to mold our lives around. You can do no wrong in my eyes, and I look forward to spending an eternity with you. You will have an entire palace of jewels awaiting you in heaven when you pass 50 years from now…NO SOONER! I praise God for the family that you have blessed us with Granny.