Thursday, October 18, 2007

Uniquely Laymon

I have been jotting down some funny stories I remember about Papaw Laymon (spelling of first name, correct middle name, and real birthday still pending)

Isabelle barely says “Momma.” She has said dada for a long time, but barely Momma…only in extreme distress. But during the last couple of weeks she mastered “Papaw”…she would run down the halls of the nursing home saying “Papaw, Papaw” and after Papaw passed away, she kept going into his room at home looking for him. I know she won’t remember, but all of the stories and picture will help her not to forget.

When I was little Papaw used to sing the following song to us:
Possum up the simmon tree
Raccoon on the ground
Possum said you rascal you, Shake them simmons down.

I know you probably have a few questions about this song, as do I. Like what is a simmon? A Persimmon? And do we even grow those in the US? And why couldn’t the raccoon climb the tree himself and get some fruit? And bigger questions like, Who wrote this song and why? Conrad says I always “eat his brain” with my constant questioning. Needless to say, I started singing this song to Isabelle. I’m sure she’ll have the same questions.

Papaw also loved to eat (again, thank you for the good ole’ southern heritage, Papaw!) Luckily, my Grandma loves to cook. He was a notorious night time eater. Before they finished building their house next to my parents, they were staying with my parents. When Conrad and I would come to visit we would sleep on the floor in the living room. One night in the middle of the night, here comes Papaw coming down the dark hallway with this light up slippers that we got him for Christmas.

Keep in mind that he was a little deaf and tended to not realize how loud he was. He came into the kitchen, rummaged around, dropped a few things, ate a few things, and meandered back to bed. The next morning there were spills and crumbs everywhere. He got up at about 4 am and started bugging my Grandma to get up and make him some pancakes. I told him, “Papaw, you got up and ate last night! You can’t be hungry.” He swore up and down that he did not get up. We told him that we were sleeping in the living room and saw him. Although he didn’t remember it, he finally acquiesced that “Well, I have to eat to keep from getting hungry.”


Jona said...

I have sang that same song to Eric. I have the same questions you do about that song, but Eric could not give me any insight either. Who knows where the song came from or if he made it up himself. But I can hear him singing it, and it is a catchy tune. I'm humming it now.:)

jaydensjourney said...

I love the stories of your Papaw. I am so sorry your house hasn't sold. The market really came to a screaching halt...ugghh. It looks like my new house sold and I hope she got a good family ;-) I'm not sure when we'll get up to OH...I'm watching for the $99 tickets and a good weekend. Mom wants us to come visit so that you'll come up...I think you are still her favorite ;-)

drowninginblessing said...

My favorite Papaw story is when the Wototo kids were visiting, and the little boy that stayed at Papaw Laymon's and grandma Margie's came in the next day saying "fat as mud"... "fat as mud"... "What is the meaning of "fat as mud"?
I always wondered that myself!
We'll all miss Papaw's gentleness and care for all the little ones, including this adopted granddaughter. RM

Anonymous said...

Danielle, one of the funniest recent memories of Papaw was on my birthday a few years ago before he got really sick. The church had a potluck dinner to celebrate my birthday. And, as tradition goes at Crossroads, they had a Ukranian blessing for me. (Thanks to Mary Ann Adkins) where everyone takes turns giving me a blessing for the next year, wishing me well, telling me all sorts of nice get the picture! Well, it came to Papaw's turn and he said, "I agree with practically everything everybody said.". Well, that tore the party up. I never got out of him what he "didn't" agree with, but that was Papaw. We'll miss him alot - your dad and I. Love, Mom

Tara said...

The picture of Uncle Laymon eating CRACKS me up. I remember ALL those visits when we were younger and Uncle Laymon, my dad and your dad would sit around the kitchen table and play Rook, Hearts or Spades and eat! It was a food frenzy everytime we were there! I think Uncle Laymon loved the company because he knew Aunt Margie would be in the kitchen cooking his favorites -- biscuits, squirrel, pheasant, etc... for the WHOLE visit!
He never got full and the food just continued. I always remember my dad saying he couldn't eat another thing on our way home. I don't recall Uncle Laymon ever saying THAT!! : )

shannon said...

I have not looked at your blog until now and it is Great! I have so many simple memories of Papaw that as a whole, made up the such a great man. One of the memories I have of Papaw from very recent years was from about this time last year. I was just seperated from Jim and I was feeling very broken and lost. I sat on the couch next to Papaw in his wheel chair. He asked me a few questions about how I was doing and I gave him some quick "surface" answers of "I'm doing okay" etc. Papaw sat quiet for a few minutes, laid his hand on mine and said "you know Shannon, you can't keep a good women down" For some reason that realy comforted me. I just smiled and tried to hold back my tears.Sometimes, the simple phrases are the ones that help the most. I love Papaw and miss him so much.

Jona said...

One of my greatest memories of papaw was when we would go to Michigan with him and Gram. Papaw was overly competitive and so was I. Papaw and I would start playing cards (and I was only about 12-14 at the time) and as soon as I would start winning papaw would start mentioning rules that he forgotten to tell me at the beginning of the game. it was strange how all the rules were in his favor so he would start winning. Suddenly papaw and I would get into a big argument about his "new" rules. Eventually dad or grandma would have to step in and break it up. That would be the end of that game.

Tiffany said...

I know I called you and told you how you really put everyone's feelings from the family into words...and you really have. I have read your posts about papa many times now and I can honestly say they make me cry (every time), but at the same time they have helped me. Spending time with Grandma tonight we couldn't help but to talk about papa in the car ride home from boo at the zoo (we tookk Eian, he loved it), just me and grams were in the car. We talked about how papa said he only got breakfast when we were coming over haha...he would always be sitting at the table waiting for grandma to be done w/ the gravy and biscuits when I walked in and we'd just sit and chat, I often think of how I'll never see him sitting there ever again and its sad, but I am positive they have gravy and biscuits in heaven....positive. I'll always miss papa so much!