Thursday, June 23, 2005

My Grandmother, Anna Leonard Neer 1901-1980

My Grandma, Anna Leonard Neer

Today is a special day to me. It would have been my Grandma's 1004th birthday. She died in 1980. Her name was Anna Leonard Neer. She was a loving, wonderful grandmother. I was fortunate enough to have been born the day after her birthday. She always said that I was her birthday present. She had a farm on a dirt road and by the time I was born, she only had some chickens and a cat. I used to spend a couple nights at her house. I just loved being there with her.

She had 6 children and my grandfather would just leave her for awhile and then show up some time later. One time, he went out for a pack of cigerettes and was gone for two years! But Grandma worked at Endicott Johnson Shoe Factories in the Binghamton - Johnson City - Endicott, NY area. Even when she lived in the city of Binghamton, she always had a big garden, fruit trees, chickens and grapes and she canned all kinds of food for her children. She made clothes for her family, sold eggs and food at work, and always ran those dress clubs at work. They never went without.

She was a very devout Catholic. But she never pushed it on anyone. She raised her children in the Catholic church. But when they all grew up, and if they didn't go, she never said a thing to them about it. She figured they were grown up and could make their own decisions. I remember when the Catholic church changed their rule and said that you could eat meat on Fridays now. Grandma said who are they to change that rule? That rule was made long before and they had no right to change it. She never ate meat on Friday.

The day she died, I sat with her at the hospital the whole night before, which was on her birthday. And the next day, which was my birthday, she died, after I left her there with my uncle and cousin. At least she wasn't alone.

She would have liked the idea of me living like this. I just wish I had learned some things from her about living this way. When she was alive, I lived in a city and was married to my first husband, who was from NYC. So I was very far from this lifestyle at that time. One thing I would like to mention is that working from home is now a option for everyone because of computers and the internet.

In my grandmother's day places like this were unheard of. Now you can work a few hours in the morning, go out and work in your garden and come back in and work some more on your computer. It's the only way to live! Beats the day in, day out grind of the job world. Having someone who doesn't know even half of what you know telling you what to do every day!

You know what tomorrow is, don't you? My Birthday!!!!!!

Copyright © 2005  Kathleen G. Lupole
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