He lived an amazing life for 89 years. He and Grandma would've celebrated their 67th anniversary next month.
They have 5 children.
15 grandchildren and a whopping 29 great-grandchildren.
I would say a life well lived.
My Mum, sister and I have flown over to be with Grandma for a few days in the home that they've lived in for 63 years.
This house contains oh so many memories!
The "mysteries" of Grandma and Grandpa's house still come alive for me even now.
My Grandpa was the most incredibly skilled carpenter.
Everything in this home has been made by him - from cleverly designed cupboards to ornately carved mirrors, ball and claw feet on lamp stands and matching side tables for their lounge chairs. There is nothing he hasn't thought of!
My sister and I were in his workshed yesterday looking for the vacuum cleaner. We stayed in that shed for ages.... It smells like Grandpa.
It's full of tools and gadgets and bits and pieces - tins with nails, little cupboards with tiny boxes and I'm betting Grandpa knew exactly what was in every single one of them.
When they built this home Grandpa planted some fruit trees. The peach and the apricot are STILL fruiting 64 years later.
(check out the thick trunk!)
Every year Grandma and Grandpa dry, stew, bottle and preserve fruit so they can eat them year round. Ok, so there are more dried apricots in Grandma's pantry than I've ever seen but they are better than ANY you'll buy in the shops. (My sister and I have slightly gorged ourselves and are suffering the windy consequences!!!)
Both of my Grandparents are "old-school". They make the most of everything. Reuse and recycle aren't new buzz words for them - it's been a way of life forever.
If Grandma needed something fixed, Grandpa could fix it AND improve it.
No, they don't throw much away. And yes, they have a bit of clutter. But they've had a full life and have lived every minute of it.
Our generation thinks nothing of jumping in the car to drive around the block to pick up some groceries. These two walked.
We chuck cheap socks out when they have a hole. Their generation buys good woolen ones and darn them if they wear through.
We grab a quick bite to eat and plonk in front of the tv but they set the table for every meal, with a placemat, side plate, cutlery and a glass. They sit at their little table in their tiny kitchen and they dine.
Younger generations pass the day by working and rushing and telling everyone how 'busy' life is. These spend their time living. Making their garden beautiful, pruning and planting and picking the flowers they've grown. Sharing a cuppa, a bikkie and a chat with one of the many many friends they've made. They wave hello to the neighbours because they know them and write letters to those who no longer live nearby.
My Grandma is a lady and my Grandpa was a true gentleman.
They are a rare and precious generation.
I shall miss him so very much.