I just looked it up, your name means “bright one”…as in a torch, or the moon.

And it’s true of you. You burned steadily, brightly, a beacon for all your children; for your children’s children too. Everyone somehow found themselves back in your home, in your sweet presence.

And your demeanor, oh how fitting is “the moon”; a gentle glow, but not weak. You were warm, sweet, but you were fiery too. The stubbornness, the hidden cookies and sweets, the quiet quips…you held your own in the Bogue clan. Even as one of the grand kids, I could tell.

Some of my sweetest childhood memories were in your presence, in your home.

I remember the day you picked lemons with us from your tree in the backyard, and you made us lemonade from scratch. I’m still convinced it’s the best I’ve ever tasted.

You knew how much I loved flowers and encouraged me to go pick a bouquet every time we came over…your garden was paradise to me as a little girl. You are still the reason I love flowers, the reason I started attempting to garden.


I have you to thank for the concept of “lunch dessert”. I’m certain I inherited your fierce sweet tooth.

You always took us thrift store shopping, and tried to show me what to look for. Most of your gifts to me felt like treasure; trinkets and jewelry that I have remnants of to this day.

You created a sense of home for all of us. As a young girl I remember daydreaming about the day I would come visit the house on Chrisman Ave with a family of my own. I’m so glad that dream was able to come true.


 “I can’t believe I had 9 of those!” you said to me while you watched me handle a squirming Ezra on my lap. I chuckled, inwardly amazed and overwhelmed at the thought.

As simple and lighthearted as it was, what a privilege to share a moment of motherly camaraderie with you. To be acknowledged as a fellow mother by my matriarch. An honor.

I love you, Grandma Helen. We will miss you, dearly.

Every time I smell toast or red wine, Jasmine or fresh lemon. Every time I see “Hen and Chick” succulents, or Alyssum, or “Black eyed Susan” flowers. Every time I check the stamps on thrift store china or eat ice cream in the afternoon.  Every time my home is full of food and wine and family and laughter…

Your light will shine on, Bright One. It will shine on.


2 thoughts on “Helen

  1. This is a beautiful tribute, Kate. I’m so very sorry for your loss – grandmothers are such treasures. She sounds wonderful and it seems her legacy already lives on through you, and will continue I’m sure!

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