I have been doing the family genealogy and lately have been focusing on my mother's side of the family. It seems to be much easier to get information on her side than it is on my father's side of the family. Yesterday I decided to take a closer look at what my generation has been up to and where we all are in life. I have cousins that I have never met in person but, thanks to Facebook and the internet, I was able to track most of them down.
My mother's parents divorced when she was a child. The divorce was hard on everyone. Up until that time, my mother had only her brother David as a sibling. My grandparents both remarried wonderful, loving people and my mother gained three new sisters and three new brothers. I never thought of my step-grandparents as any different than I did my blood related grandparents. To me they were just Grandpa Mark and Grambunny, two people who loved us all and we them. After my grandmother passed away, my grandpa Mark (father of the sisters), again remarried another very kind, caring and generous woman who had 3 sons of her own. As you can see, we now are dealing with a really large family! My focus, for this bit of writing will just be on the first and second marriages for my grandparents and the grandchildren that they were blessed with. My Grandpa Mark's third marriage took place after I was an adult and I am so thankful that he was able to spend the remainder of his life with Grandma Hazel who loved all of us kids as her own also.
All four of my grandparents on my Mom's side would be so proud to see the legacy that they have left in their grandchildren. In the group of us we have 2 published authors specializing in food, a very successful restaurateur /chef and James Beard Award Winner who owns several restaurants and is still expanding, 3 musicians, a minister, an economist, a marketing director of one of the largest computer software companies in the world, a computer software developer, a teacher, and IT specialist for a major door and window company and another IT specialist who travels around the world trouble shooting for different government and private companies, a scholar who disproved a very popular and long accepted economic theory, and an international model who also is an amazing photographer. There are some that are still in high school and their greatness is still yet to be revealed and I am still trying to track down a few more. :)
Our grandparents gave us the gifts of love, laughter, music, good food, a thirst for knowledge, gardens that inspire beauty, wanting to learn about different cultures, ideas and beliefs and to accept and embrace those differences. I am so thankful that my cousins, siblings and I had these wonderful people in our lives and I cherish the moments that we shared with them. They have now all passed away and sadly, so have some of their children (my mother's siblings). I'm sure that if our grandparents could see us all now, they would be proud of each and every one of us who are successful in the paths that we have chosen. I am also convinced that they would love seeing that some of their great grandchildren, that are now adults themselves, are finding happiness and success in life and continuing the legacy that they all established.