Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day Roundup 2009

It was a sunny day.  The predicted thunder showers never materialized.  We met Sam and Sarah and boys at their house and rode up in tandem to Heber Cemetery where Tom's parents, grandparents and aunts and uncles are buried in a Plummer plot.  Elva, his mother, began this tradition many years ago.  She would fix all the flowers in coffee cans lined with aluminum foil. Flowers from her exuberant garden: iris, peonies, bridal wreath, and roses.  Her husband, Gail, got the largest bouquet but the others did pretty well, including Gail's sister, the unfortunate Lodema Plummer, who dropped dead at the age of 23 on the dance floor in 1927.  She had had the 1918 influenza and it had weakened her heart.  She died in the arms of Robert Bjorkman, who teared up whenever he talked about it.

I suggested to Sam and Sarah that they name their next daughter Lodema.  We could not come up with a pleasing nickname.  Lodi?  Dema?  Od?  But is a nickname even necessary?

We were  saying how all kinds of distant relatives would come by to talk to Elva--the Andersons and Bjorkmans are the two names we remembered--when suddenly lots of Plummer cousins appeared:  Susan, Scott, Pat and Anne.  There was much celebrating about this happy coincidence, and we all chattered in the sun and marvelled at the over decorated graves and had a generally good visit.

The children,  Elliot and Louis grew hungry so we went off for our "picnic."  Elva always made a large lunch of fried chicken, potato salad, jello salad, brownies, chips, punch and we would eat in back of the Heber tabernacle rain or shine, hot or cold.

We did our own version:  we went to the Homestead and ate lunch overlooking the pond and the geese and then went to the gift store for fudge and a carmeled apple.  Elliot made two trips up the volcano while the rest of us listened to birds and fed Louis bits of chocolate.

Tom and I napped and then drove the Miata with the top down around the neighborhood, past the lake where we noticed the new sections had been opened up.  This means longer kayak rides.  It was all rather blissful.  I think you should say it aloud when you know it's true:  it was blissful.


Robin said...

This is the best report of the day that I have ever read. Nothing really spectacular happened, except running into the cousins, but it read like a movie. I spent my Memorial day doing Fix-it jobs with the family. boring.

Katy said...

Or we could say it like the young women in my ward say it: It's Sounds so refined. I can't pull off saying it like they do. I'm too old. I'll stick with the blissful bit.

Kristen said...

It sounds blissful.

I am wondering though, how was the idea of naming the next child Lodema received?

I told my sister when she was pregnant with a girl that she should name her Maple Pleurisy. Now I was thinking Maple is a family name (turns out it's Mabel - but close enough), and although Pleurisy is a lung disease (not fatal much anymore), I still think it has a nice ring to it. Pleurisy...kind of melodic, flows off the tongue. A lung disease should sound flemmy, not smooth, like Pleurisy. Which sounds pleasing especially when attached to Maple. Don't you think?

Maple Pleurisy. I guess I'm the only one who liked it though. She named her Lainey instead. Which is darling and wonderful, but lacks the conversational kick in the pants that Maple Pleurisy would provide.

ann cannon said...

i just loved this, Louise. Wow. And I cannot believe I've never heard the story about Lodema before.

This took me almost 30 minutes to write.

kimreidbooks said...

Where is the Plummer plot? I'll have to watch for you next year. I am of Heber origin and spend every Memorial Day in Heber/Midway as well. My family is under a big pine tree, and the roots are pushing up the nearby headstones, which is pretty morbid if you think any more about that.

I enjoyed this post! It WAS fantastic weather in Heber that day. Not even windy.