Our family is saddened by the death yesterday of my mother-in-law, Ruth. She had just turned 94. This picture was taken at Brita and Ben's wedding with her (favorite!?) son--
She was a fun and busy lady, hardly slowing down a bit. Last summer she decided it was time to move out of her big house and into a senior-living apartment. Turned out she really liked her new place, which was great. The only drawback that I could see was that she said she could no longer make her good cinnamon bread in her little kitchen. I thought that was almost reason enough to move her back to her house!
She raised 9 (yes, nine!) wonderful kids on the farm, keeping up a great big garden and keeping track of all of those kiddos. Lots of 4-H projects and animals, sports, FFA, and the church was a big part of the life of the family. From the first time that I met her when Bob and I started dating, I was always impressed by her energy and vigor.
Below is a picture of her with a few of her grandkids and great-grands. She earned the name "Mini Grandma" when it became evident that she was shrinking as they were all growing! She kept track of them all, no matter where their lives took them. And they all remember her admonishment--"Remember you're a Hansen!" Just to keep them grounded and a reminder of the importance of family ties.
She had recently had some concerns with her health, and just last week needed a tune-up for her cardiac status. She had long ago made it clear in her healthcare directives that she did not want to live with limitations, so when she had a major stroke while in the hospital last Thursday, her sons and daughters understood what she meant when she said she was "ready to go home to Heaven". And so the end of an era passes through our lives, with many good lessons and memories to hold onto. We love you and miss you, Mom.