I like to get them from here, because this was the garden where my father-in-law planted his roses.
This is a house where extended family gathered, and many of these plants were seen by those whose graves they will decorate.
It's a living memory.
Usually, Memorial Day comes around, hot and muggy, and the garden is in a lull between the last of the late spring and the first of the summer flowers. I have to search for the last of the roses.
Not this year! Thanks to a cold winter and a cool spring, we are in the peak of roses and irises, and all manner of flowers!
This year, the bouquets practically make themselves: red and white roses with salvia for Aunt Toni, the wonderful woman who first made me feel really welcome to the family.
Irises and roses for my father in law, Grandpop Bob, who died before I met him,but whose life and virtues I enjoy every day in my husband.
Dark purple irises for his younger brother.
Old fashioned pinks, geraniums and white roses for his mom, and azaleas for his dad.
We've all brought flowers, and we have fun arranging them for each person just so.
We tell stories. We talk about how much each person would have enjoyed their flowers. Probably do enjoy the fact that we are coming out the way they did...
The kids pick up the fallen petals and arrange them in patterns on the headstones.
We pray for our departed dear ones.
We smile and head for home, time for a big cookout, time for more togetherness, more stories.
The weather is perfect: sunny, 72 with a light breeze.
This year the kids promised to put on a play for us, and it turned into many, many plays, most of them based on Aesop's fables.
Grandpop Bob would have liked that. Maybe he did!
Happy Memorial Day!