Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Labor Day Funeral

Yesterday was my Aunt Maries funeral.  It was an overcast day, the rain held off until late afternoon.

My Aunt liked flowers, any kind of flowers.  Yellow roses were her favorite and her two remaining siblings gave her a perfect one in a bud vase.

Flowers for Aunt Marie On Sunday afternoon before the visitation at the funeral home, I began to gather flowers for a bouquet.  I wandered here and there throughout the yard and the wild gardens, although it is getting late, there were still flowers that looked pretty good.  The vase and the ribbon were both garage sale finds. 

I called a few of my cousins..I asked them to bring some flowers to add to the bouquet…some had cosmos, some had phlox, some had dahlias and some had zinnias..we had so many flowers that I had to borrow another vase from the funeral home.  They were perfect, a wonderful blend of shapes and colors, my Aunt would have loved them.

The service on Monday was lovely, not too long and not to short, my cousin spoke eloquently of his mother and her life and  about how the Lord gives and the Lord takes away.  The Pastor had a tough act to follow.  Of course we sang “Amazing Grace.”

After the service we had a proper funeral lunch, a sandwich, pickles, sliced tomatoes,  a variety of cold salads, and of course any kind of homemade “bar” you could want…you have to feed your grief before going to the cemetery. 

The drive to the cemetery takes about 25 minutes..if you drive slow it takes a half an hour.  The cemetery is high on a hill in the middle of nowhere ..a tiny little cemetery where most of that side of my family is buried.  Trees surround the cemetery, so it is not visible from the road..and the road in goes up, up, and  up some more…I have been at this cemetery when the weather was bad and the road was impassable and both the mourners and the casket bearers had to walk up the steep hill. Once you get into the cemetery there are two areas..the flats or another hill which overlooks the flats. My Aunt was planted high on the hill next to her husband and parents.

Pickerel Lake Cemetery Sept 06, 2010  So..it is over..another funeral pamphlet tucked into my old white bible.  Another life all summed up in a few paragraphs.  It is a good thing that there is no space limit on good memories:)

17 comments:

  1. This was so eloquent and evoked for me all the funerals I have attended. And you said it perfectly, Connie. Aunt Marie has finished her journey here and it seems she was very well loved. What else matters??

    ReplyDelete
  2. Any funeral that I've been to has the lunch after the cemetery visit. What a lovely idea to use the wildflowers and flowers from everyone's yards to make bouquets for your Aunt. I'm sure she loved it.

    ReplyDelete
  3. And your vase with the most thoughtful vase a person could hope for. I'm terribly sorry for your loss. I'm sure she smiled when she saw you carry your perfectly picked flowers in her vase. Hugs fo comfort for you. Tammy

    ReplyDelete
  4. There is such a vast difference in a small community and a huge city including funerals. I remember when my Uncle died and I went with my Mother...everyone knew each other, there was a lunch afterwards and other family members buried at the graveyard just as you have described. City style there hardly ever is a lunch or any other famiy member buried at the cemetary and in fact most of the time the person is cremated and there is no cemetary ceremony and the flowers.....straight from the florist....think your way is special.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Bittersweet memories for me on this one. Small town is best.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I am truly sorry for your lose.
    Flowers that come from loved ones hands are always the best.

    ReplyDelete
  7. These funerals are always tough and yet we live on. They don't seem to get easier but I guess we understand more each time of life's fragile ways. I thought I was attending a funeral in Iowa until you said you ate before you went to the cemetery. What's with that? I guess I thought the lunch was final payment for going through the whole ordeal. It is a great time for family to heal a little one last time before they all go home.
    The collected flowers is such a great way of honoring her.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Your flowers were just beautiful and came from the heart. Your sweet Aunt would be most pleased. I'm so sorry you've lost a dear loved one. I'm sure ya'll had a wonderful tribute to your 'special little lady'.

    Ya'll have a beautifully blessed day!!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Beautiful, Dear Friend. You made me cry. At least it was a lovely day, no rain, for a loving aunt you loved summer and flowers.

    Linda
    http://coloradofarmlife.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hello everyone, Thank you for your kind comments. Often times if the cemetery is a long way from the church where the service is held they serve lunch first because not everyone goes to the cemetery and in this case it would have been an hour plus wait for the family to return to the church. This way there is plenty of time at the church to have lunch and at the cemetery too:)

    ReplyDelete
  11. You write a nice memorial for your family. The bouquet is beautiful! Not only were the flowers a gift but so was your time in gathering and arranging. A gift of the heart is special.
    Root canals and a funeral - - what a week!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Sorry for your loss, dear, but that is life.

    Our family plot is in a big city (Philadelphia) but my Great Grandpa had the foresight to buy a pretty big plot....there are 4 generations there now and I am the last of mine (with several younger ones following).

    When I was there recently I felt at home, even tho the occasion was a sad one. Seems strange to say, but I was the only one who had known all of the residents and I felt lucky to have done so. So many wonderful memories.

    There is room for me too which I find comforting. Rather than cut down a tree I chose to be cremated and buried in with my Mom.....save a tree and a space that way and have company to rest with.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I am so sorry for your loss. The flowers from your garden were a beautiful idea , grown with love and care , what a lovely gesture.

    ReplyDelete
  14. So well written Connie. Brings tears to my eyes. You'll miss her I know, and I bet she liked your flowers the best!

    ReplyDelete
  15. "[T]here is no space limit on good memories" really hit the mark and made me teary eyed.

    It sounds like Aunt had a lovely voyage "home".

    ReplyDelete
  16. I ditto Iggy on the "no space limit"...:)

    Beautiful flowers. I love the small, quiet cemeteries out in the country. Sounds like a comforting funeral. I felt you lovingly place Aunt Marie in the white family bible.

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for stopping by! I appreciate your comments! If you have a question I will try to answer it here. Connie