"Memories of Momma" — A 71 Day Photo Tribute (Day 36)



My parents were both hard workers and would save money each year so we could take a family vacation to Gulf Shores, Alabama, about seven hours south of my hometown in Huntsville. I have lots of wonderful memories from these vacations, including this one of Momma and I hanging out at the white sandy beach.

Mom was, as they say, a sun worshipper, and she loved laying out at the beach or the pool, working on her tan. (She would keep a dark tan in the off-season at the tanning salon which she and Dad coincidentally owned alongside the barbershop.) I probably drove her nuts as a young child wanting to run up and down the beach and play, when she just wanted to relax in the hot sun. She and my Dad would take turns being active with me, but Mom was usually the one to take me for a swim in the ocean or pool since Dad had an artificial leg that wasn't waterproof. (He was a leg amputee from a farming accident when he was 3.)

You'll notice the little armband floatie sitting on the lounge chair next to her. She'd never let me go near the water without my arm floaties or life-vest, and of course I would test my luck and try to sneak off to the shore. She was an incredible Mom and kept me safe always.

*It's Day 36 of my 71 day photo series in honor of my dear sweet Momma who passed away on 03.21.2016 after a harrowing 71 day health battle. Those 71 days do not define her. Oh no. What defines her — and me — are the incredible 66 years that she lived her life. I hope you enjoy these snapshots of the beautiful moments of her life.