To live in hearts we leave behind; Is not to die.

~Thomas Campbell

Monday, November 21, 2011

On the third anniversary...

God looked around His garden
And found an empty place.
He then looked down upon the earth
And saw your tired face.
He put his arms around you
And lifted you to rest.
God’s garden must be beautiful
He always takes the best.
He saw the road was getting rough
And the hills were hard to climb,
So He closed your weary eyelids
And whispered "Peace be thine".
It broke our hearts to lose you
But you didn’t go alone,
For part of us went with you
The day God called you home.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Celebrating What Would Be Mama's 70th birthday

Last week I watched Practical Magic and I think the story line of sisters with a special bond and special powers influenced a recent dream of mine that featured Mama.

In my dream, my sisters and I were working with Mama in a beautifully appointed and large sewing room doing alterations and making repairs to prom dresses and formal wear for girls that couldn't afford to spend $100 or more on a new gown for a dance. Girls were coming and going and we were talking and laughing and really enjoying our work and the company.

I knew in my dream how wonderful it was to have Mama's company, tho' it didn't seem odd that she was there or did I seem to have any realization that she was gone.

Someone remarked how well Mama looked and we all agreed that she was going so much better. In fact, she was glowing with good health and her smile warmed me to my toes and I could feel myself greedily soaking it in and savoring her company.

As we were working, I started coughing. A deep and productive cough of a really bad chest cold. A cough that rattled and was hard to quiet. I say productive as I was bringing up all sorts of corruption. My hankie was full and I was leaving the room to more discreetly empty my mouth, when Mama asked why I was coughing so badly. In my dream, I remembered suddenly that my sisters and I had taken on her disease and had decided that we would take turns battling it while she grew in strength and we conquered the infection with our younger and stronger lungs. I also knew that if I met her eyes, she would know what we had done and would forbid it. In my dream, I willed myself awake so she couldn't do that.

It really was a wonderful dream, sewing together, doing something she said she always wanted to do, start a closet of gowns for young ladies in need. The togetherness and the love I felt in my dreams really nourished my soul and brought a smile to my face all day.

Thank you for visiting my dreams, Mama!
This will be a wonderful day to remember your love and celebrate the family you created!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Grandson Alexander shares his thoughts

"When I think of Manna (thats what we called her), I think of sunny days and everything nice and comforting."

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Family friend, Pam, shares a memory

I have many memories of your mom and would love to share them with you.

The 1st time I saw Roxanna she came to give Jan and I a ride to St. Placid. She was beautiful and had a little tiny baby with her, Jerry. She was always kind and loving. I felt like I found Janet my new sister and friend and then a big sister in Roxanna.

I spent alot of time with you all when you were little. Jan and I babysat and spent time just doing family stuff.

I remember all the times Roxanna did all of our hair. Dances and especially for my wedding. One time she cut my hair when we first met in 1969-70 and I wasn't very happy with it and she told me it looked alot better than before she cut it and I had to agree with her, we had a great laugh and thats when I knew I had another big sister to look out for me.

There was always several kids running around and I don't ever remember your mom yelling or raising her voice. now Mummum was another story.

My greatest memories are of a loving and caring friend. Sweet, nice and beautiful. Someone who was always happy to see or hear from you and always welcoming.

I'm sorry I wasn't around more. I only could find 1 picture i'll include it. This was at my wedding and my dad was pinning her flower on.

Love you all hope to be able to get together some time with your family.

Love ya,

Monday, November 1, 2010

All Souls Day

All Hallow's Eve or Halloween is the day before All Souls Day. This is the day we especially remember our loved ones who have passed away.

We beseech Thee, O Lord, according to Thy loving-kindness,
have mercy upon the soul of Thy handmaiden Roxanna,
and now that she is set free
from the defilements of this mortal flesh,
restore her to her heritage of everlasting salvation.
Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Today, I will celebrate the birth of the most important woman in my life, my mother, my mentor, my confidente, my friend.

I will resolve to spend the day in observance of her life, to remember the love she gave, the laughter and tears she shared and the joy she brought into so many lives, especially into my own.

And, I will do it with a smile. I will not give in to the temptation of tears, to feel sorry for myself for the ache I feel, for I miss her so very deeply.
I will strive to reflect the love she gave me onto those I love. By her example, I will learn to be a better mother, a better wife, a better sister, a better friend. I resolve to love as freely as she did, to give of myself as freely as she did.

For the past year and a half, I thought my greatest regret in losing my Mama was that I was not able to get to her side to say good-bye again before she passed. But that would have been for my own comfort. Only recently, have I realized that truly, my greatest regret in losing her was that I was only just learning to be the friend to her she had always been to me.

Mama, you gave me birth into the world, love to sustain me in it as I grew, and by your example I will reflect this love more purposefully, more intentionally, more faithfully, not only to those closest to me, but to all those with whom my path crosses.
Happy Birthday, Mama. I remember you...I celebrate you...I love you.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Eleanor shares her memories of Roxanna

I met Roxanna as a client for nails. This means I sat with her for two hours every three weeks for twelve years or more. I went from her nail station in Tigard to her coming to my house, to Mandy's house, to the house in Hillsboro . I was lucky to be retained whenever Roxana had to trim down her schedule.

Roxanna was a perfectionist. She filled her life with artistic accomplishments of all kinds, including bride's dresses, children's clothes, fairy things, child-sitting and visits and many expressions of love and devotion to everyone around her. Her life turned out to be short, but she wasted no time in leaving her mark on this world.

Over the time I knew Roxanna I met most members of the family, including all the grandchildren as she cared for each of them across those years. She had an enviable wealth of family and did not miss any opportunity to be together with you all. The summer hangout near Detroit Lake seemed like a high point . Even though you are many, I know she was at the heart of it all and must still be sorely missed.

As a friend and companion, Roxanna had the things I value (and which are not that easy to find): a combination of candor, intelligence, thoughtfulness and humor. She was also spiritual in a most genuine and non-intrusive way. She was easy to talk to, a great listener, able to be silent at times and handled different perspectives well. We mostly agreed on things, but if we didn't, she expressed herself tactfully without hiding her view. Her words were always well chosen and I never heard her speak in platitudes. This is what gave me so much respect for her as a person.

Truly the salt of the earth, a beautiful woman and a loving mother and wife, although I feel so sad that she is gone, she left a lasting impression on me. If there is a beyond, I look forward to seeing her there.

Take care all,



Saturday, November 21, 2009

A prayer in your memory

Today, on the one year anniversary of Mama's release from earthly concern, I offer this prayer from the 1945 Book of Common Prayer according to the use of the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America. This prayer is also offered in celebration of the lives of her parents, George Robert Clark and Theda Geraldine Fowles Clark. This Book of Common Prayer belong to Mumum. It was used at St Paul's Episcopal Church where Mama and Daddy were married.

Almight God, with whom do live the spirits of those who depart hence in the Lord, and with whom the souls of the faithful, after they are delivered from the burden of the flesh, are in joy and felicity; We give thee hearty thanks for the good examples of all thy servants, who, having finished their course in faith, do now rest from their labours. And we beseech thee, that we, with all those who are departed in the true faith of thy hold Name, may have our perfect consummation and bliss, both in body and soul, in thy eternal and everlasting glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

To Honor Their Love

In honor of a love that will never die, I am sharing a link to a post I made for my Mama and Daddy's 46th wedding anniversary.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Roxanna F Wallis ~ Mama

Written by Georgia and read at Mama's Remembrance

Someone we love is gone, Some of us have lost a trusted friend, a partner in worship, a listening ear, a big sister, a Gramma Sanna, a Manaw. My father won't grow old with his best friend-the love of his life-at his side. My sisters have lost their confidante, and all of us children have lost a rock solid, faithful, prayerful mother, who will never again come for a visit, never again linger in quiet, thoughtful conversation, and never again leave our kitchens clean and laundry folded.

I did some time travel this week-I needed to-and what I saw, most of all, was a remarkable mother, a very good gift to her children, someone whose life mirrored her convictions.

-Through the eyes of a child I can see her pausing from housework to embrace Dad, as he arrives home from the office. If we kids rarely commented on this daily ritual, it was surely because we naively assumed that every married couple was just a much in love as our parents were.

-And there she is working into the evening in the kitchen or at the ironing board or the sewing machine or vacuuming the hallway.

-When Mom was awake, she was up to something. Never frenetic but always engaged, without complaint, without resentment, without hesitation.

-I can still hear Mom's quiet questions. Mom knew just how to pose questions that conveyed, mysteriously, the only correct answer and why it made such good sense.

-I remember Mom's steadfast refusal to complain, to suffer publicly, to evoke pity, to attract attention. Ask her how she felt, during a migraine(!) and she would answer you honestly but quietly, and then find a way to change the subject from her to you.

-And I remember her laugh. Some odd comment or crazy story over dinner and Mom would grow strangely quiet. You wouldn't know she was laughing unless you looked over. There she sat; quietly convulsing, red face and tears spilling down her cheeks. Even when out of control, she didn't draw attention to herself.

Only as I came of age did I begin to realize that Mom ran an entire cottage industry on the side, ministering to people whose lives know the pain of rejections, the ache of disappointment. In Mom, these people found a safe place, a strong shoulder, a rare blend of strength and tenderness. She never took a course in caring, yet she lived a life of servitude. She never set up a website, never charged a fee or solicited donations, never flashed a business card and never went on tour.

What she did instead was open her life, along with Dad, to the sad, and the harried, the naive and the cynical, the rough and the refined, those people of course being us, her children. And she did it out of a deep, gentle love for us.

One of the last evenings at home I was privileged enough to give her a pedicure, something I don't think I'd ever done before. It took the tolling of the bell and the writing on the wall before I seized the honor of honoring the feet of a woman who spread her love to us all. I suppose we could have talked more, or more deeply, or prayed together. But staring death in the face is hard and sometimes you have to look away.

Today we look away no longer. Friday, the 21st I had the incredible privilege of watching my Mom slip from this life into the next. It would be hard for me to say which experience was more profound and compelling for me: watching my Mother slip into God's arms or watching my Father watch my Mother. Through my tears I saw a man remain resolutely faithful, impossible tender, deeply caring and intensely in love, until the very end.

Dad: you kept your vows, you both did, until death did you part. I learned so much about love these last few months, but in those few short hours-much about the deep, deep love between Mom and Dad, and about what it looks like to love when there is nothing you can do to stop the hurt.

What happened last week? Into what mysterious fellowship has Mom been ushered? Does she now sleep until a Voice calls her forth, like Lazarus, on the Last Day? Or is she now fully, consciously present before God? I don't know. But this I will profess: when death, "the last enemy" (1Cor 15:26), is abolished and when God's every promise is fulfilled, the reunion will be sweet and there will be joy.

We love you Mama, Roxanna, Sissy, Manaw, Gramma Sanna and any other wonderful name you were known by.

A Letter to Roxanna

Written by Carol and read at Mama's Remembrance
It is very difficult to sum up in just a few words what Roxanna meant to me. She was and always will be my most dearest and cherished friend. We shared our deepest and innermost feelings, both happy and sad.

She has held my hands manicuring my nails for close to 25 years. She also held my hands helping me when I fell and broke my hip and again she held my hands and my heart when my husband passed away last year.

Roxanna adored her family, her dearest Barry and her beautiful children and granchildren. They were all the love of her life. I remember her teaching her grandchildren the alphabet - how to count - colors - shapes - the United States - all about the fairies and "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.

I will forever treasure the many gifts she made for me - a beautiful Christmas tree skirt, a special treasure box, a pretty bird bath, and of course, my "much used-can't be without" rice bags. She also gave me many apple decorations for my kitchen. I will forever remember those acts of love and kindness.

I always aspired to be just like her with her many talents, her outlook on life and her unconditional love. My only regret is that I didn't meet her earlier in my life. She was a beautiful, caring and loving friend and I shall keep her in my heart forever.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Mama Our Treasure

Mama Our Treasure
By Georgia

As we look back on these years
to see how far we’ve come and grown,

We take a trip down memory lane,
And what we see has shown

That every step we’ve taken,
you have been there by our sides.
From infacy to adulthood,
we’ve stood the test of time.

You cradled us and nurtured us
Through all these many years,
You held us and comforted us,
through happiness and tears.

You’d pick us up when we would fall,
You’d dust us off and then encourage us
to get back on that damn old horse again.

Your constant care and loving
and your warm inviting heart,
has always been a treasure that
We know would never depart.

If we could be just half the Mom
You have been to us,
Then you have taught us well dear Mom,
that family is a must.