The service for Dad was done in two parts last Wednesday. First the family attended a private burial ceremony, and then we had 95 guests at a Celebration of Life at the church. Dianna, Julie, Greg and I each shared some words about Dad, and a few people in attendance also shared some memories of him. We played a slide show of his life as guests came in. He was certainly well loved and lived a full and successful life. He will be greatly missed.
Many family members attended the services and were there in support of Mom. All of Dayna's family attended from Texas, as did Darin and Diane from Tennessee. Greg's family was all there and of course, Julie, Marie and Adam. Carrie, Mike and Randi came down from Denair and nephew Terry flew in from Seattle. My brother Don and his wife Betty also attended. There were many other relatives and also friends from church, Carl's work from which he retired over 30 years ago, and many others whose lives he touched.
The family began leaving on Thursday, and by Friday only Greg's family was still here. We had a birthday dinner for Julie on Saturday evening at a restaurant in El Segundo, and said goodbye to Greg's family. They were headed home to Rochester and Boston on the red eye.
Mom held up very well throughout the week, but when we returned home from the restaurant Saturday night she had a bad fall while getting ready for bed, injuring her back. There are no broken bones but she is in a lot of pain. Our plans for the next few months are to serve as her primary care givers for several days a week, with a couple nights off each week so we can go home to our trailer in Bakersfield when another relative spells us. She does have a paid caregiver six days a week, but that is only during the day time, and she needs someone here 24 hours a day. We had not expected to be needed as nurses quite so soon, but that's what happened. Hopefully she will feel better in a couple weeks.
The tentative long term plan is for Mother to sell the house and move into an assisted living center. The scheduling and timing of those things is still somewhat up in the air, but we are moving forward with preparations. One of the things we are doing is inventorying the contents of her house in preparation for determining what she will take with her, what will go to which family member, what will be sold, and what will be disposed of in some other way. The inventory and cataloging is a huge undertaking but it must be done. I have completed only the entry way and the formal living room and have almost 150 items photographed and identified so far. Those are the two easiest rooms. This is going to take a while.
Life goes on.