Friday, January 11, 2013

A Beautiful Life

On Monday of this week, my family and I said goodbye to a wonderful lady. My grandmother, Evelyn Flora Corey who passed away peacefully and surrounded by loved ones on January 3, 2013.
My beautiful grandmother and I
She was ninety-six.

I was asked to say a few words on behalf of her five grandchildren at the funeral, something quick and light, and so I asked my cousins and my siblings about happy memories they had...snapshots of Gram, as we called her, to help others see how special she was. I also spoke with many different people at her wake--some strangers, some friends, some family. What I discovered was one common thread that we will all remember about this amazing, unassuming lady.

She never complained.

From rough lumber camps to high-profile dinners with Members of Parliament, from near poverty to relative grandmother was one of a rare breed of people who always saw the good in her situation. Asked to feed twenty strange men...she put a pot on the stove.  When our children came to play on her antique furniture and prized piano...she showed them where the books were and gave them a candy. Asked to leave her home of seventy years...she walked into the nursing home and embraced the social schedule, going to bingos and bell choirs and waiting patiently for her evening cookie. Her glass was always more than half full, it was overflowing.

She loved life, loved people, and was so very proud of her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. People I had never met told me of how proud she was of my book, my letters, my family, the photos I'd sent. While I thought I was neglectful of her, never spending enough time, she was singing my praises to anyone who would listen. I'm humbled when I realize how much she endured graciously in relation to my small discomforts that send me spinning.

So this year, instead of New Year's resolutions that I know I'll break, I'm making a personal goal in honour of my beautiful grandmother. It's a simple one, really. I'm going to try to see the good in things like she always did. The operative word is try here, because I know I will fail. I'm going to try to praise my kids and my husband and my siblings and my parents and my friends...instead of looking for their faults. I'm going to search for the positive when things go wrong. And when life requires me to do something I don't want to do...I'm going to think of the little woman who always recognized that sometimes you've just got to get on with it if you want to find the reward at the end.

She's gone to her reward now, and I am so privileged to have been a part of her beautiful life.

Rest in peace Gram. May your legacy live on in those who loved you, including me.



  1. Brenda that was perfect and your Gram is now at peace with the man she loved and cared for! When my Dad was looking to buy property it could have been anywhere but it was the wonderful people like Aunt Evelyn that made us love Canada! We love our Canadian family and God willing be able to spend time there soon. Do you know that you and Kathy were the first to babysit Corey! She loved you and so do I. God Bless you and your family. I am proud to be Canadian and blessed to be part of the Corey Klan! Oxox

    1. Thank you Robin! She was such a wonderful lady. She loved her husband and her family with such simple grace. We'll all miss her so. Hope to see you and your beautiful family soon!

  2. Wow. Well said babe. A very fitting tribute.

  3. Lovely post on your grandmother, she was really very kind person.


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