(posted by Ryan)
Chace + Smith Photography is something I am passionate about, but my family will always take top priority. Running a photography business in rural America has many difficult challenges, but the reward of being so close to family in such a beautiful area makes it all worth it. There are many reasons I am grateful to have the opportunity to run my own business, but this week has once again reminded me that my business is not the most important thing in my life.
This morning at 3:20 am, Betty Lou Rockwell, my grandmother (Nan) died.
Nan was a dedicated wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother who didn't take any shit. She was full of one-liners and unique sayings that never failed to put a smile on someone's face. Even as she lay in her hospital bed close to death she managed to make everyone laugh.
A compassionate, caring and hard-working woman, Betty Lou always made sure I had enough to eat. Sunday evenings at Nan & Pap's were always filled with kids playing on the floor, 60 Minutes on the television, talking and laughter in the kitchen, and lots and lots of food. Nan always made sure to bake a cake or a pie to accompany the wide variety of other snacks spread out on the kitchen table. As soon as you walked in the door, Nan would greet you with "What can I get ya? How about a piece of apple pie? A ham sandwich? Iced Tea?"
I don't believe there is anything Nan loved more than making sure everyone was well fed. Every time I would bring a friend or a girlfriend to Nan & Pap's I made sure to tell them to come hungry, because when Nan gives you a piece of pie it's not an ordinary piece of pie . . . it's a Nan size piece of pie. Which, on occasion would nearly be a 1/4 section of the entire pie. Top that off with some vanilla ice cream and watch Nan smile with satisfaction.
It was hard to watch her go but I'm thankful for the time I had with her. I am thankful of the lessons I've learned from her and for all the fond memories I will carry with me. She leaves behind a husband of 64 years, 4 children, 8 grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren and an uncountable number of memories.
Here is Nan & Pap on the their 60th anniversary.
What is important in your life?