The Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe - - -
Once upon a time there was a young woman named Barbara who was raising seven children. As sometimes happens, her sister-in-law became very ill and for a time could no longer care for her three children. Without hesitating, Barbara took her two nieces and one nephew into her brood which then consisted of ten.
While toiling to raise ten children, Grandpa Mac, rather tongue-in-cheek, dubbed her "The Old Woman in the Shoe." I say tongue-in-cheek since Grandpa Mac was at the time still in the process of raising the last of his own thirteen!!!
Rather than being daunted or insulted by the title, Barbara took it as her own. In fact, she reveled in it. For the rest of her ninety years on this Earth, she built her life around the "shoe" theme. She not only cared for those ten children, but she also gave of her heart to every child whom God sent across her path.
She began to collect small ornamental shoes, tokens of her willingness and ability to extend the borders of her family. Over the years she collected hundreds of them, both shoes and new children for whom to care.
Today Barbara's family gathered to mourn her passing and celebrate her life. She left behind a wonderful legacy of love, some very large shoes to fill, and a collection of shoes!!! Her children asked us to take a shoe from the collection as a memento of her life.
Aunt Barbara, I chose this shoe. I will cherish it always as a reminder of the love you taught us all to share.