Buzzings from a quilter who bumbles her way through life!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Saying Goodbye to a Special Person!

In Memorium

Irene Laden Duncan August 16, 1908 - February 25, 2015
Aged 106

I'm reprinting this post from 2011. I have edited it a little to be more current. It is a tribute to my grandmother who passed away yesterday at aged 106.

Me on the left, my grandmama in the middle, and my sister on the left. (She would probably not be pleased that I posted a photo in which she was not "fixed up".  This photo was taken in 2011.

My love of quilts began with this sweet lady, my grandmama.
My grandmother was born in 1908 as a twin. This is her on the left and her twin on the right. They were named Irene (my grandmother) and Pauline (my aunt). 
This is a picture of a photo that was sitting on her dresser.As a young woman, my grandmother's twin eloped. Their daddy, who was a little harsh, was so afraid she would also elope, he nailed her windows shut and locked her in at night. She eloped anyway when, after a church service, the sympathetic preacher called her in to talk to her and performed a marriage ceremony right then and there! She and my granddaddy left in the preacher's wagon!   Again, my grandmother is on the left and her twin on the right. (She was slim all her life!)

    Her "world famous" chocolate cake recipe  can be found here.

It is the fudgiest cake you will ever hope to find! Her story of this cake can be found at the link above.  

My grandmother had "spunk". She once chased a burglar out of the house with the broom to protect her babies! (She had three sons.) 
Her purse always smelled like juicy fruit gum and she always had embroidered handkerchiefs that she knotted into "hanky babies" during the sermon (to entertain my sister and I). She also showed us how to make carnations out of Kleenex tissues and a pipe cleaner. We made carnations until we sat in a pile of torn tissue edges!
Her popcorn was the best I've ever had. She made it in a big heavy pan and used butter instead of oil. The butter browned as the popcorn popped, so it had a wonderful flavor!
And this is a peak at the quilt that started my interest in quilting. It's a Little Dutch Girl quilt that my grandmother made. The little socks and ribbons at the back of her neck have been carefully colored in with something (I am guessing crayon) to make them match the dress. I used to pretend the sashing was a road. I would go "visit" each little girl on the quilt by driving along the road and turning into their block. I was a little shocked that her panties were showing as the wind lifted her dress. I wanted to grow up and make a quilt just like that! Sadly, I haven't done that yet, but if I can just live as long as my grandmother did, there is still time! 

Grandmama, We love you!


  1. What a lovely family and a special celebration. Love the quilt.

  2. Wow! 103 years old! I can't imagine! Just think of all the things she has witnessed! How blessed you are!


  3. Happy Birthday to your incredible Grandmama! I'm sure she has lots of stories to tell.

  4. Good post, Linda. Mama used to put that quilt on me when I was running fever. For some reason it was just a comforting quilt and I felt better just having it on me. I loved each little girl. I had my favorite but now they are all favorites.

  5. How special to have such a heritage, living still!
    Wishing a happy birthday to your Grandmama!
    The quilt is a pretty one, too, I hope you will try it ~

  6. Thank you for sharing you Grandmama with us. What a lovely lady and great photo.

  7. What a sweet post! Happy birthday to your Grandmama. She is beautiful!

  8. A very happy birthday to your Grandmother. A hundred and three! WOW!

  9. Pass on my BirThDaY wishes too! WOW 103... that's ME I hope!!
    Thanks for sharing a lovely story about the dutch girl quilt.. what a wonderful memory to have !
    Cheers :)

  10. That was fun to read, and a beautiful grandma and quilt!

  11. What a beautiful write & Happy Birthday to your beautiful Grandmother. So love vintage pictures.

    Would you be so kind to leave a comment on my BLOG ONLY (no emails) thru the 18th, for the Miracle Makeover fund drive. Charlie, 8 yr. old, & his story are fabulous. Every comment brings us a $1 for the next person that will be sponsored.

    Have a beautiful weekend.
    TTFN ~

  12. oh my and she does not even look 90...what a special blessing she is and has continued to be to many I am sure. And that wonderfully special quilt that you ran your fingers over...this post is over whelming...W O W !!!

    Thanks for sharing your family with us!!

  13. Oh my gosh is she ever darling! Happiest of birthdays! I love the little Dutch girl quilt. Isn't it so neat how quilting has touched so many of us? Hugs to your grandma!
    xx, shell

  14. What a wonderful story about your grandma and the beautiful quilt that started your interest in quilting! Happy Birthday to her!

  15. How wonderful! Happy Birthday to her.
    Happy quilting..x

  16. Happy Birthday to your Grandma! This was such a great post. I love her quilt!

  17. What a lovely story! Thanks for sharing it, and your photos.


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