This photo was a little gem I found on our cute cousin Paisley's blog. That's two year old Marshall playing with Grandpa's nose... you can see my lap in the background and the blanket that was wrapped around baby Tyler as we sat there hanging out with one of the greatest men I've ever known. Paisley wrote the sweetest tribute to Grandpa and posted some other great pictures along with this treasure. It's worth the read...
Grandpa Stratton has been on my mind a lot lately, especially today which marks two years since he passed away. I had a good cry over it a little earlier as Tyler watched... bewildered... probably confused why I would be sitting there crying my eyes out when I tell him fifty times a day to try not to cry... haha.
Then tonight I really wanted to sit down with Marshall and read some of the sweet thoughts and feelings that have been shared on this blog since Grandpa died. Marshall, at three years old, had some of the sweetest thoughts about Grandpa during that time of mourning, and he still mentions -probably once a week- how he misses Great Grandpa Stratton. But tonight was far too busy for that, and Marshall probably didn't need to be traumatized by all the emotion that would come spilling out of me while reminiscing... so I settled for quietly mentioning how much I loved Grandpa and how I've missed him since he died, since today (two years ago) was the day he left us for his mission in Heaven. Marshall always gets really tender when we talk about Grandpa and he agreed with me that he missed him too and commented on how it looked like I was going to cry... which I did a little bit.
A little while later, while tucking Marshall into bed I got to hear what Marshall had to say about this great man. He got a bit choked up as he told me he thought Grandpa was so great and that he hoped he was safe in Heaven. Of course, I assured him that was true and listened to, or more felt, Marshall's feelings. Marshall told me he is even glad we got the chance to go and see Grandpa's body after he had died (we had a sweet, special family viewing at the mortuary that I wonder if Marshall will always remember it). He looks forward to the day he will be able to see Grandpa again. And I do too. I loved him so much in the few years I was able to know him and as time passes since he died I am surprised by how much more I miss and love him all the time. I'm so grateful for the tender mercies I've experienced as I've been reminded how much I am/was loved by him. I had an experience back in January that I really need to write down (that may be too special to my heart to share on the internet...) so I can always remember his special love for me and the power of his great big, bear hugs.
I'm very grateful for this good man and the family I am a part of that is so great, definitely with much credit to him.