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Around this time each year I find myself especially nostalgic, particularly missing my beloved Great Grandma Schafer. Whether peeling a fresh pear, smiling at the colorful array of fruity Crush soda at the grocery store, or discovering a flower in my garden bed that “came up volunteer“… she’s with me.

For generations, my paternal family birthed their children young, thus I was blessed to have a close relationship with my great grandmother for most of my life. Her mother –my great, GREAT grandmother– was still alive until I was in the second grade. I’m grateful Grandma Schafer got to know both of our daughters before she passed.

Grandma Schafer’s birthday was May 1st. May Day! Naturally, she taught her grandchildren the customary traditions of her day and under her direction we conspired to bless her neighbors in secret, annually, with flowers from her bountiful garden.

This year, though here in Montana it didn’t look much like the Mays I so fondly recall, I made it a point to share with my daughters Grandma Schafer’s beautiful legacy of blessing in secret. I won’t get into what we did as that entirely misses the point. Without intent of thanks or notoriety, Grandma Schafer was consistently the most humble, considerate, and generous picture of Christ (loving God and loving her neighbors) from my childhood.

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Each of our daughters has a family namesake for a middle name. Our second daughter shares Grandma Schafer’s, in tribute. My hope is that each of our daughters would pass her legacy on to their own children someday.

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