Sunday, July 25, 2010

Granddad - Norwin Lee Elsasser

We were lucky to have made it to Michigan to visit Rich's Grandfather (he calls him Granddad) when we were in Ohio for my family reunion last month. He was such a laid-back, jolly little fellow (sounds funny to describe someone like that, but that is exactly what he was). He was pretty short (about 5'4") which is amazing because Rich's whole family is very tall. They lived outside of Ann Arbor, Michigan (where Michigan University is located!!! BOO!) in a small town called Dexter. It's beautiful there, so many HUGE pine trees and everything is so green and colorful. That is why I like going home to Ohio, too. My mom and my sister have the most incredible landscaping with flowers and trees. Their lawn is bright green and it is just amazing to look at (funny how you don't notice this stuff until you move to the desert). :)

While in Michigan we always go downtown where Rich's dad grew up...we drove past his house they grew up in (very nice) and go downtown to eat. Last time we ate at a really cool restaurant and ironically it used to be the gas station that Norwin owned. We also went to the Dairy Queen (I love me some ice cream lately) and of course Rich's dad had lots of stories of going to that DQ growing up. Rich's dad could tell stories forever!!!! It should be very interesting to see if he tells stories to his grandchildren, too. LOL!

While in Dexter we played Euchre, it was pretty amazing that his granddad was still extremely sharp while playing. He is one of those guys that can count the cards while playing...I was his partner and he could tell me exactly what I was about to lay down, it was unbelievable. I think I would make him laugh because I am very animated and I was floored everytime he told me what my card was. He would smile and he never wore his dentures so he had no front teeth. Everyone would laugh, but he didn't care. His house was still very 1970's with orange carpet everywhere and his furniture was even wrapped in this matching shag carpet. His towels in the bathroom were very retro as well as his artwork. He just never changed the place since he lived there...sometimes I think there is something so cool about that...being so content in not always trying to "update" and keep up with the times. The reason I say that is because my family is VERY into this and I can personally obsess about it with my own house. I could actually have a full time job just playing around in my house trying to make it perfect. Sometimes it's insane. But I do love to decorate!

Okay, DING! (My friends always say "DING" because I go off on tangents about other topics and can't stay on track). My point of describing Norwin and where he lived is for my little guy so he can read this someday and know about his great grandfather that passed away 3 months before he was born. I think it is so important to know your roots.

Norwin LOVED the Detroit Tigers...he could watch them all day long, they also used to attend many games. Funny thing that happened on Rich's birthday is that he turned on the television when he got home from work and the Tigers were playing Texas!!! How crazy. It was kind of a little sign from his granddad.

Well, one thing we know for sure is that we can keep his name going (Rich is the last Elsasser)...and we will make his middle name Lee.

"You're blessed when you feel you've lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the One most dear to you."
I'm blessed because God is embracing me every step of the way (Matthew 5:4).

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