Sunday, April 9, 2017

Sunday, April 9th

We were not prepared for the next week's events.  On Thursday, February 24th, we talked to Grandma Crane on the phone.  In our call she said, "I can't understand why Heavenly Father hasn't taken me home."  Well, the next Tuesday she had a heart attack at home, Melanie took her to Kaiser in San Leandro, she had another heart attack at the hospital, and in the afternoon, right as our daughter, Rachael, joined Cousin Jeff, and brother, Richard, and Karen, his wife right as she passed away.  I saw her at that moment on FaceTime and knew that her wish had been granted. Grandma was reunited with Grandpa! It was March 1st and  Russ and I left Moscow on Monday, March 6th, to attend her Friday, March 10th, funeral.  It was such a wonderful experience!

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Grandma had four children; Shanna, her oldest daughter, passed away in 2003.  Three of Grandma's children were there.  All four spouses were there.  She had 23 grandchildren, 22 of whom are living, 21 of whom were there.  Grandma had 49 great-grandchildren. 36 of them were at the funeral.  The grandchildren sang "A Child's Prayer" and the great-grandchildren sang "I Am A Child of God."

Her posterity amounts currently to 82 people presently.  As more great-grandchildren are born, she likely will have a posterity of 100+ people in 2 generations after her marriage to Grandpa, who died in 2007, ten years ago. I know she is having a wonderful reunion with her parents, Shanna, Grandpa, sister, and tons and tons of friends. I want to be sad about Grandma going, and try to cry it out, but I know she is just in another dimension and so happy.  I had a dream, shortly after I returned to Moscow of her and Grandpa and Shanna and me.  We were dividing something up, not sure what.  Everyone was peaceful and happy.  Since then I cannot cry really, even though I miss Grandma a lot, and it is difficult to realize every time I write an email or make a call, that she is not here any longer to receive it.  But I am happy for her.

Two weeks after we returned to Moscow, we had to leave.  We first entered Russia on a 90-day visa, and it was to expire on April 24th.  In order to obtain a 3-year visa, we had to go to Riga, Latvia, for ten days.  We stayed in the Radisson Blu Elizabette Hotel across the street from a lovely park.  We both worked there there.  Russ made sure they brought a table and chair for me to have a desk and we both worked in that hotel room for most of the ten days.

Riga is a lovely town, old--created in 810 AD--there is a lovely Old Town, central market, lots of parks, a National Opera and National Theater, lots of restaurants, a beautiful river with interesting bridges, and very interesting Latvian food and culture.

We went to Stockholm on Tallink to go to the Stockholm Temple.  It was a lovely crossing, followed by a great day in the temple where we met very kind people who we had lunch with and did an endowment session.  We returned to the ferry terminal immediately and crossed over the Baltic Sea into the Gulf of Riga and had a lovely return trip to Riga.  

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