I remember how twisted or upside down our Christmas celebration was in 1965 when I'd been earning money from a real job for several months and I couldn't wait to give Larry the most popular toy that season, A Talking Bugs Bunny! You pulled a string and among other things this stuffed animal-toy said, "What's up Doc?" I can still see Larry laying on the couch the whole Christmas season because he was sick and he barely even looked at this great gift! I found this picture from a website called Collectible Toys and the Bugs Bunny is now worth $225! I probably paid $3.95 or less for it 47 years ago. Larry and I talked today about our expectations and how often we are disappointed when we set our expectations too high. As I recall I wasn't as much concerned about Larry's health that Christmas as I was disappointed that he couldn't enjoy the Bugs Bunny chatter! How childish!
Look how handsome Larry was for my wedding in 1966!
The bedroom Larry shared with his brothers
Larry and Don during the kitchen remodel project!
Larry and I bonded several times over the next 40 years. He sent me the sweetest cards and notes that I have squirreled away somewhere. He took thousands of pictures over the years, but this is one of my favorites. I think Karen was about four years old!
Larry helped us put in the sprinkler system when we bought our Clarkston house in 1977. He also helped us plant 10,000 trees in our vacant lots, probably in 1979. When we sold our Clarkston Heights home in 1990 we moved into Grandma Tillie's house, but then her house sold and we were basically homeless, so Larry invited us to live with him. He was single then and had 3 bedrooms so Karen, Roy, and I moved in with him until we moved to Boise in April, 1991. Ironically Larry's children all attended elementary school in Clarkston and he said many times he wished he'd have purchased our house instead of the one in Lewiston! We shared many moments over the last 20 years, but nothing as emotional as the day our Mom died. He called me around noon at Juniper Meadows and said that he'd expected Mom for lunch at 11:30 and he was concerned because she was "never late." He called again at the same time the police officers walked into Juniper Meadows with the news about our Mom's accident. We spent the next several hours together phoning all our brothers and sisters, aunts and cousins in Illinois. The next day we headed up to Cottonwood together to get into the house and begin planning the funeral. I'm grateful Larry's office was so close to Juniper Meadows and that we were able to be together for the next several hours when we often looked at each other and said, "we don't know what to do."
When I retired from Juniper Meadows Larry knew what to do...he hired me to work for Edward Jones when Mary Kay was out of the office. I was a little apprehensive and he said, "you just have to answer the phone and listen to old people." It's been another great experience - a retirement career and opportunity to watch him interact with people.
This trip down memory lane brings intense feelings of gratitude for the moments we've shared over the years. Larry, my retirement boss, my financial advisor, my god son, my inspiration, my brother. Thank you for being who you are, for sharing your faith, and for treasuring memories and trinkets! God bless!