Irma is probably about 80 or close to it and she was at the bus stop waiting for her "grandson" who I think is a foster son. How awesome is that?
She came here from Texas in the late 40's. They had a house there but it burned to the ground, most likely because someone put a dead body in it from the army base and then set it on fire! I KNOW! There was a gas can on the porch that didn't belong to her dad and that the rumors. Her dad was only able to save his carpenter tools by jumping through the window. He came out with it over his shoulder and the house collapsed not too long after. She said they watched her mom's canning shoot off into the air and explode. Crazy!!
So they went to stay with a neighbor for a little bit and then her dad sold what they had left, a pig and his old truck and with some help from the neighbors they bought train tickets and came out to California. They found a place to stay in Berkeley and her dad walked and walked and walked the soles off his shoes and then they put cardboard in them and he walked some more and then found a job. He bought a car and then was able to buy them in a house in Richmond.
The neighborhood was scary though and there were bad people there that beat up little kids, cut one kids ear off in the bus yard even, and beat up an elderly teacher.
They moved out here when she was in about the 5th grade and she went to the school my kids have all went to for a little bit. They lived down by the river. Her dad found a house that had a room burned out of it and talked to the owner, who said that he could fix it up and live in it for a few years. The back of the house was basically a lean to and they had to use a pump for water and a ringer for washing.
Fast forward a bit and she was 16 when she got married. She had five of her own kids and raised her brother's twin boys. He brought the boys to her and said I brought you some more kids. She said it was like having two sets of triplets since all her kids were so close in age. This was back in the day of cloth diapers too! She had a friend and they would load up all the kids and take them in the station wagon to the river and go fishing and things like that. She didn't mind taking them shopping with her, although her friend who was a foster mom that adopted five kids wasn't that adventurous!
She has 12 grandsons and I think 4 granddaughters. She just moved back out here in May or so and she told her grandsons she would pay them for fixing her roof, but they told her that was the least they could do for helping to bring them up right.
Her little dogs name is Bridgette and she is a Bichon Frise. Her brother had six little puppies that he had to bottle feed and he gave her Bridgette for her birthday about two years ago. She makes Bridgette's food, chicken breast and rice and vegetables. Bridgette does tricks with a hula hoop! She listens really well. She took her with her when she went to the beauty shop and she sat in the chair the whole time, even while there were six little boys playing in there. When it was time to go the father told her that her dog listens better than his kids.
Bridgette doesn't like baths all that much. When she tells her it's bath time she runs and hides in her crate but then she will come out when she tells her to and is a good girl for her bath. She blow dries her hair so all the little pieces are separated right. When she took her to the groomers they messed up her hair cut around her ears so she's not taking her back until it grows out.
Her little 5 year old "grandson" told her that he doesn't like chicken. The last lady he lived with was a vegetarian and he really likes vegetables. She has to take him to go visit with his mother tomorrow for a couple hours. He told her that he is so lucky to have her for a Grandma and that she is the best!