This summer has been rough off and on.  As I’ve mentioned, I’ve stayed pretty busy with jobs and internships, which is perfect because I love to stay occupied.  However, it has also been a summer of loss.

In June, I had my Great Grandmother’s funeral service.  She passed away back in December during my finals, and she asked that we did not do anything for her until summer so people could enjoy the holiday and save some money by cremation.  Quick note: it actually turned out to be the same cost of a burial, so if that’s what makes your family determine burial vs. cremation, it really isn’t different.

She was my pen pal, and I felt her loss.  It was hard once family met to put her ashes into a stone and seal it.  The weather was appropriately somber with clouds and a plague of mosquitoes.  We told stories of our favorite memories of her and bonded during this sad occasion.  I was thankful I was able to come up for the service.

Me, my little sister, my great grandma, my older sister, my mom, and my grandma

In July, right before my family went on vacation, we had to put our oldest cat, Ashes, down.  We’ve had to put pets down before, but it was different with Ashes.  He was 20 years old like me.  I’ve always known him to be around.  A special ca, he walked around the house yelling “MOM!” or “HELLO!” when we weren’t paying enough attention to him or he was just generally mad.  He had to be held like a baby or he would whine.  Bacon was his favorite food.


Ashes loved red blankets. Red or nothing.

We knew it was coming.  He had been having a rougher time getting around, falling more often when he jumped for his favorite spots on couches, and generally having bathroom issues.  For the past year, I worried I was going to be away at college when he passed.  Even though we knew he was rising up to senior+ status as a cat, we couldn’t bring ourselves to bring him in and put him to sleep.

When we took him in for his normal checkups, they always said for a cat his age he was in phenomenal condition.  He walked stiff, had three teeth, and always had bad breath, but he remained high energized and proud until the very end.  We took in a stray kitten about a year ago, and the vet was convinced it helped prolong his life even more.


Ashes and Oliver, the kitten (though hard to believe in this photo) we took in that he mentored of sorts. They were really close.

Despite his perseverance, there was no more putting it off.  We all cried for days and felt awful doing it, but we knew we had to say good bye.  It still leaves a hollow ache in my chest when I think of him.  I keep thinking I’m going to see him prance around the house or see a flash of him out of the corner of my eye, but it obviously never comes.

Up until the end, I couldn’t stop giving him attention because I knew it would only be a matter of time before I lost my chance to snuggle him.

The summer wasn’t all sadness.  My family traveled to Florida, which I will go into further detail in another post, and spent time together at home.  I saw a bunch of movies with sisters like Christopher Robin, Ant-Man and the Wasp, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, Deadpool 2, and Avengers: Infinity War.  We bought more movies and continued or family tradition of family movie nights and rummy.

I enjoyed my time at Culver’s and even traveled to headquarters to receive a scholarship.  That was a fun day, which I will describe in another post completely devoted to Culver’s.  And as tradition dictates, I spent half-day with my Culver’s crew on what we call “A Trip to Nowhere.”  For this, we shut down the store for the day and adventure to some location or locations to bond and blow off steam.  It was a great time as always.  I will miss my crew when I am back at college.


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