Writing In The Sand…


Writing In The Sand…

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/Granny Gee


She sat playing on her tablet. She downloaded an app called ‘ Writing In The Sand.’


She used her finger to write her name in fancy print. She swirled her finger to make scurvy lines beneath her name.


She clicked above on the upper left side of the tablet to erase hued name.


‘I LOVE YOU… SKIP’ appeared on the screen. She clicked above to erase the words.


Her finger traced out a flower with six petals. She drew out a stem; she drew three leaves on it… then, she clicked to erase it.




If anyone was looking at the woman sitting there in the black pickup truck… they would see just an ordinary woman sitting there playing on her tablet. No one would ever guess how ‘unordinary’ this woman was.


No one would see the grief, nor feel the strange sensation in the woman’s stomach. No one would see the quick tears fill her eyes. At a distance, she seemed to be absorbed in what she was doing.


The woman looked at the words she wrote with her fingers ‘in the sand.’ She took her pink stylus, raised it to upper left corner, clicked… erasing the … pain… she’d wrote.


She lowered the tablet to her lap… she raised her head, looked off in the distance. She looked past the trees to the sky, her mind following her eyes.


She sat there, unaware of the tears in her eyes. She sat there lost in the past… no longer aware of the present.


In her mind… all kinds of things were happening. If one looked closely at the woman… they might see a smile appear, a frown. They might see the tears begin to flow in earnest down her face. They would see her hand reach up absent-mindedly … touch her face, rub the tears away.


If someone watched long enough… they would see the woman’s shoulders shaking; see her place her hand on her chest, above her heart. See her lips move… not hear the words she cries out silently.


No one would ever know, understand what they seeing. How could they? Their eyes would see only an older woman sitting alone, waiting for someone… quietly.


The woman smiled as the sound of the door alerted her… her husband was opening it. He got inside the pickup truck… smiled at her never knowing what she had been through while he was gone. She never told him… they were very close; he would worry, be upset.


She kept smiling, talking about ordinary things. Skip, her husband… would never know how far she traveled, as she waited for him.


He would never know that she wrote her grief … as she was writing in the sand.


Homemade Soup… Beautiful Fall Day… Song By Wind Chimes And Breeze

Homemade Soup… Beautiful Fall Day… Song By Wind Chimes And Breeze

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee


Well… I got up early this morning, got my wonderful shower, dressed.  I fed our three Pups a nice breakfast in their freshly-washed bowls.  I never feed their meals in a dirty bowl.  I, also, have them a treat bowl each.


All are stainless steel bowls.  I put a rawhide chew, and two milk bones in each treat bowl for after they eat their breakfast.  I love to watch them get a treat, go lay down and chew contently.


This morning is cool, breezy, sunny.  It’s another beautiful fall day.  I had to go outside… I did.  I raked, cleaned the Pups’ fenced-in yard.  It’s all sand now, thanks to the ‘swimming pool fiasco’ this summer (you can find it on my blog… happycolorsandgrannygee.blogspot.com).  We always keep a clean yard for the Pups.  They love to run, play… and slide around in the soft sand.  The sand is wonderful… though… it can cause a dog to itch.  I have to brush them, often.  It’s important to keep their yard clean.


I came back inside… the next thing I know… I’m making a homemade soup.  Oh my… today’s a wonderful day for homemade soup.  It celebrates fall time,

welcomes the cooler air.  I have it simmering now.  I have the doors open, I can hear the sound of my wind chimes as the breeze playfully blows them… they are

singing ‘it’s fall time, it’s fall time’!  My favorite time of the year… my favorite song by my wind chimes.  :)))


Homemade soup, a beautiful fall day… song played by wind chimes and breeze… it is a special day.  I may go out on the porch later, eat at the patio table… while I watch the clouds shift, change shapes in the clear, blue sky!


The Third Time’s A Charm!

The Third Time’s A Charm!

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee

I don’t know how to begin… we hired a guy to level out the pool area.  The soft sand was there…. and all one had to do was to pull the sand to make one side level… and cut down a couple inches on the other side… and use a level.  Simple as that…


He said he knew how to make the ground level… I can say this, once ‘finished’… it wasn’t.  He had convinced us he knew exactly how to do it.


We paid $40.00 more dollars … to still have an uneven pool space.  He was in a hurry to go… I felt he wanted to go, had other things he wanted to do.


I just handed him his money… he left.  I was disappointed.  Other than that… he is a nice fellow.  I won’t forget.  Twice, the guy came back in the next day or so… he never mentioned the pool… though I could see him look toward ‘his work’…


I tried my best to ‘bring up the sand’ to make it higher in the area one could see… needed extra sand.  I don’t have the muscle, nor brawn to do it.  Skip wasn’t here…. nor could he do that; he could have another stroke, or worse…


Now… this is what happened…


The water truck came for the second time… another $225.00 paid for water to go in the pool, plus the extra $40.00……..


In all… this is what all has cost to put a little 12 x 15 above the ground pool:


Pool:    $300.00

Sand:   $150.00

Water: $225.00

Guy:     $40.00

Water:  $225.00


Total:    $940.00


This is what a little cheap pool cost to get it set up once more with water… that might not stay.  We could have almost bought, paid for… a really nice pool to put above ground… like we would have rather had.


The water truck came for the second time… I could see the doubt in the guy’s eyes …. the pool didn’t look level at all.  He set up his hose to begin pumping water into the pool… he filled it half-full, and the unthinkable happened!


The pool collapsed, I ran… thinking I could simply pull the wall back up… the force of the water was too strong.  It nearly washed me off my feet.  I can’t describe the pain that went through the surgical areas on my body… it was just awful, just… awful.

I wanted to cry… we had paid someone who said they knew how to level a pool area… and this happened.  I’m still … I hate to say it… but, I can’t forget this… I do feel upset over it… but, I don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings.


I just don’t like to feel hard at anyone… now, this is the second person in a matter of days… a tattoo artist, and a … pool-leveling guy.  Now, I harbor ‘hard’ feelings toward two people… at least, for just ‘a little while’… until I can ‘get over it’… :)))


I asked the water guy if he had just a few minutes; I knew it was ‘going to kill me’…. but, I wanted to put more sand where it was needed.


Do you know, I think he saw how much I needed, wanted my pool… he watched me a few minutes… The next thing I knew… he was helping me… then, taking the rake from my hands… he put more sand where it was needed.


We both were perspiring … it was such hot work.  I’m not used to doing things like that… but, desperation will make one do things they might not should; especially when it means something to them.


You see… this pool is important to me.  I need it for my body… the terrible pain that I live with every day of my life.  I was going to add more pain… and did, as I took the rake and began pulling more sand to the ‘low’ area.  All the time, I was thinking … ‘I need this pool, and the warm water.. I need it’!


Finally, we decided that the pool was as level as we could make it.  I could hard stand up for the pain, and the combination of the pain, heat had weakened me.  I actually felt like I wanted to faint…


He began to pump water again… I’m happy to say that so far… the pool is full.  It might not be quite level… I don’t care, as long as it doesn’t collapse again.


I put the floats… hot pink, neon green… into the pool.  I put the happy-colored beach ball in, also.  Happy-colored ‘toys’ floated around on top of the sparkling, clean water… beautiful!

NOW… I’m ‘gun-shy’… I am finding myself sitting, looking at the water in my swimming pool.  I am afraid to get in… it ‘could’ collapse again!


I found myself waking up through the night …thinking about it.  I have come to the conclusion that… IF IT DOES…  I am going to have the pool taken up, put up or… given away.


Then… have the sand raked down even… to look nice… and enjoy walking on the sandy yard.


I’m just so sorry it cost so much… this is the ‘third’ time… and I’ve always heard… ‘the third time’s a charm’!

Another Imaginary Walk On The Sand By The Ocean…

Artwork by Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee…. I loved doing this piece of artwork… I painted, cut out pieces of artwork I had already painted, drawn… put together.


Another Imaginary Walk On The Sand By The Ocean…

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/Aka Granny Gee


I walk in the soft sand, happy to be at the ocean

The wind blows my hair away from my face

Tendrils tickle my cheeks, I push them away


My long, flowing skirt billows out like a ship’s sail

Hugging my legs, defining their shape

Beautiful, soft, pink material caresses my skin


I close my eyes, inhale deeply… listen to the sounds of the sea

Sea gulls sing their songs…  the sound of waves join in

Making the most beautiful music to my ears


I stop to feel the wind blowing, play, tug at me

Sleep… how I would love to lay on a soft bed that sits on the sand

On white, silken sheets… fluffy pillows to lay my head on


I feel I could find peace of mind, my soul be soothed by

Sand, sea, songs sung by the sea gulls, blended waves…

I’m sad, I feel bittersweet… gray


My colors aren’t bright at the moment, I’m the color of sand

Blue as the sky… you know my son died on the beach

Listening to the sounds his mother hears on her walk


I wonder if he lay facing the sky as his spirit left his body

Looking past the sun to Heaven, with a far away look in his eyes

I don’t know this, I just try to ‘feel’ my son’s last moments


These are secret thoughts no one knows I think about

Thoughts I share with no one; thoughts that come to my mind

Thoughts that haunt, hurt me deep inside in a ‘deep-quiet’ way


I try to imagine his last moments as I take my imaginary walk by the sea

In my mind, I am walking, seeing a tall, muscular, handsome guy

He’s running, laughing with a little boy who looks just like him


I stop for a moment to watch… both are blonde-headed, blue-eyed

I reach out to touch them… they don’t know I’m there

They continue to run, play, squeal with delight, play by the ocean


I begin to walk, but… stop again, look back… I see the big guy

Has collapsed to the sand… I feel alarm as I watch, hear

The little guy say, ‘daddy, get up… come play with me’!


I walk closer to both of them… no one knows I’m there

I kneel there on the sand, lean over to look into my son’s face

Calling his name, trying to wake him up; he doesn’t hear me


I hold his head in my lap, my tears fall onto his face

I reach out, pull my little grandson close to me

I feel his fear of not knowing, understanding that something’s wrong


People appear, reach through me to speak to my son, shake him

Someone’s gentle hand reaches out to my grandson to comfort him

I stand to the side to watch… I’m not really here


I’m in my mind as I take my imaginary walk to that fateful day

The day my son died, my grandson lost his daddy… his life changed

I walked there trying to see my son’s last moments, as I’ve done so many times


My mind becomes so weary with the load of pain, grief I carry

In my mind, heart, a heavy load…  I imagine a bed with silken sheets

Sitting on the sand, big… fluffy pillows to lay my head on


As I end my imaginary walk, I am closing my eyes as my head snuggles into a pillow

Tears fall on the silken pillow case, feeling cool to my skin

I fall asleep to the music of the sea gulls, waves washing to shore


I imagine as I fall asleep, that my son’s death was as gentle as this

I imagine he didn’t feel any pain, felt at peace just as I do

Lying here on my bed by the sea, feeling the ocean breeze caress my skin


I’m too weary to cry anymore, tears still fall on their own

How many times have I been here to seek peace of mind

Going into myself, taking my imaginary walk by the ocean


Trying to see, sense… know that my son didn’t suffer

When his body collapsed, falling onto the sand

Please Lord, I hope he didn’t feel any pain… fear


Thank-you, for having your angels nearby to come, protect

The little boy who stood there, not knowing yet… his life changed

Forever… only knowing his daddy lay there, when he wanted him to play


My prayers for this little boy, my precious grandson

Is that he grows up knowing he was the apple of his daddy’s eye

No one could have been prouder of him… than his daddy was


Grow up, be ready for the world… he is someone special

I can see, sense it even now… big personality, confidence, laughter

Sense of humor in his eyes… that’s my son’s son… Big Daddy’s Boy


I’m going to close my eyes in my mind, I’ve completed once again

Another imaginary walk on the sand by the ocean, I’m so weary

I lay my head down on my fluffy pillow, I’ve found peace of mind









So many times I do this… I used to cry all the time.  I’m too weary to cry now.  Tears fall, my sobs are silent now… I go to this place in my mind now… to seek peace of mind.


Even in my mind, in my imagination… I’m so weary that I imagine the bed on the sand, so… I can rest my mind, my body… my very soul.


Tommy… my son, died May 29, 2010… running, playing, laughing with his little 3 year old son… listening to sea gulls sing, the waves rushing up to the shore… at Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.


He was so happy to be at the beach to play for his first time with his little son.  The evening before, he stopped me as we were walking out of our home… he grinned, said… “Mama, I’m going to get to play with my son for the first time at the ocean!”  He barely made it there… just in time.  He safely arrived there… only to leave again on a… trip he can never come back from.


I never forgot that moment when he told me, his eyes sparkling with excitement…  I never forgot my son… I will always write to remember my only child, Tommy.  I hope you will remember him, too.


If you want me to remember your child, tell me… I won’t forget them.  If you want to tell me their name, date of birth, day they passed away… I will put them on my blog, to remember them always.  You might want to add one special thing about them.


Love, Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee









It’s Time For You…

Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee as a little girl… a little girl who had gotten hold of scissors, and cut off her very long hair… not only that, cut off her little brother’s hair…


It’s Time For You…

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee


The little seashell lay on the white sand near the water’s edge

Waves flowed gently … almost touching the little seashell

Soon, it would wash out into the ocean to be lost until the next time

It washed back up on shore to lie there … again


One day a little girl was hunting for seashells

She ran here, there with her little yellow bucket, red shovel

What a pretty picture she made with her long, blonde hair

Blue and white shirt, blue shorts, white sandals


She saw a little seashell, thought it special enough to keep

It was added to her yellow bucket with three more seashells

Special enough for her to want to keep

To take home, place on her special shelf for treasures


She saw a clear glass bottle half buried in the sand

It had a cork in the opening… she saw a piece of paper inside

She pulled the bottle from the sand, popped the cork out

Tried to wiggle the paper out with her fingers to no avail


What could she use to pull the piece of paper out with

She saw a stick nearby, ran to pick it up

The bottle was lying on the sand where she laid it

She picked it up, put the stick into the bottle


She began manipulating the paper until it came to the top

Of the bottle… she pulled it out, opened it to read it

‘You have 3 wishes’… the note said… ‘use them wisely’

She sat down on the ground, laid back on a rise in the sand


As she lay there looking up into the blue, blue sky she watched

The big, fluffy white clouds shift, change shape

Her attention was distracted by the sea gulls flying above her

She listened to the music their voices made as they flew around


Three wishes… what to wish for, should she wish only for herself

Or make wishes to help others, make dreams come true

What to do, she looked inside her mind, searched around

For something to help make her decide what to wish for


There she saw an image of another little girl, who was poor, dirty

In her mind… without thinking, she wished for the little girl

Everything that would make her life wonderful, new home, clothes,

Shoes, new car for the girl’s family… she saw the little girl smile


Her mind drifted, searching for something else, she knew not what

Her thoughts turned to an elderly woman who attended her church

She always wondered about the pain in the woman’s eyes

What could be causing the woman to seem to always be hurting


She wished for the pain to go away, to see the woman’s eyes light up

Be happy for the rest of her life, to never be sad again

Let go, let go … let go of your pain, everything’s going to be alright

I wish for only good things to touch your life, the little girl thought


Only one wish to go, what in the world could the little girl wish for

She began to wish for never-ending wishes so, she could do miracles

In others’ lives for the rest of her life, she felt a special change

In herself… she became a miracle-worker through the years


Until one day, she… herself became very old, feeble

The thought came to her that she’d never wished anything for herself

She only wanted to help others, she never thought of her needs

Just this one time, she’d make a wish for herself


I wish, I wish I might… become a little girl again, start over

On the beach, looking for seashells… discover another wish bottle

Buried in the sand, so… that I might start over making dreams come true

The little girl got up from the sand, she was dressed in a blue, white shirt, blue shorts, white sandals


She began to run here, there… looking for seashells

Up ahead in the distance, she saw something sticking out of the sand

It was a clear bottle with a cork in the opening

She could see a piece of paper inside, she found a stick to pull it out


She read the piece of paper… ‘Little girl, you will have a wonderful life’…

Not only that, you’ll never know any pain, sorrow, grief

Because you just spent a whole life making miracles, dreams come true in others’ lives, never thinking of yourself

Go now, little girl, keep smiling because you will never have to shed a tear


Never have to shed a tear for the rest of your life

You’ll never know pain, sorrow or grief… you’ve been a good person

In your life before, usually ‘bad’ things happen to good people

In this one instance… only good things will happen to a good person.. run, embrace your happy life, little girl… it’s time for you



Tommy ‘Looked Too Strong’ To Die





Tommy’s last photo… taken short time before he died May 29, 2010… they were on the way to Myrtle Beach.  Tommy looked forward to playing with Taban, his 3 year old son for the first time… he was so excited.  Tommy got to do exactly what he wanted to do… just in time.  As he was running, playing, laughing, taking photos, video… he collapsed on the sand.  Tommy died…




Tommy ‘Looked Too Strong’ To Die

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee


For some reason my attention is on this last photo of Tommy, my son.  I look at it, I see a strong young man who had for the last year of his life had a hard time coping with the accident he was involved in on previous May 17, 2009.


Looking ‘into’ the photo one just sees a handsome young man driving, on his way to the beach with his family… Myrtle Beach.  They had reservations at the hotel on the beachfront… on the sand that Tommy last walked on.


Tommy and Taban took off down to the beach without telling anyone.  Tommy had been helping to load their luggage on the rolling cart to take up to their room…


I wonder what was in Tommy’s mind as he took Taban by his hand and they ‘disappeared’ while everyone put clothes away, and such things one does when first getting to the hotel?


I think to myself that ‘knowing my son’…. he took Taban down to the beach to play with him… maybe he ‘felt he needed to go ahead’.


Maybe he’d been feeling ill, not knowing if it was the medicine he was taking as he’d not long been to the doctor.  I look ‘into’ the picture… I can’t tell ‘how my son was feeling’.


This photo hurts me to look at it… Tommy looked ‘too strong to die’.  I look at his strong arms, the way he sat driving.  Tommy always had good posture driving, walking.


He had a smooth walk, at one time he could run very, very fast when younger.  He used to amaze me at how quickly he could run… and ‘be there’ in just a moment from quite a distance off.


I wonder if Taban or McKenzie will run one day so fast?  I wonder if their posture will be naturally good, one day?  I wonder if they will walk as smoothly as their daddy did?  I hope I get to see, to know.


Tommy was very good with numbers… I wonder if his children might be, also?  Tommy was very interested in the world news, what went on, what could happen.  He, Skip and I constantly talked about what was going on in the world.


What was in Tommy’s mind as he drove, looking straight ahead?  I see what looks like his little remote control for his sirius radio up on the sun visor.


I see trees in the rear view mirror… I ‘think’ I have Tommy’s black cap that is on his head in the photo…. I can’t remember.  I’m not ready… to look in his chest… yet.  I … just can’t do it yet.  I think his wife gave it to me.


This is the black cap that she recognized when someone stepped away from Tommy on the sand ..down below.  She was up on the balcony watching, thinking people were … building a sand castle.  She saw Tommy’s black cap, instantly ‘knew’ something bad had happened.  She was running to get down there.


Tommy’s black hat… laying on that white sand….close by where everyone was working on his body to make him ‘come back’.


The stranger who called our house phone… had called the last number Tommy had called…………. our number was the last number he called… I sit here thinking about that … last number Tommy called….


I answered the phone… I knew it was Tommy… the caller ID on the house phone said so.  I was smiling as I answered it… he said he’d call back.


The day my world changed forever…  I lost my only child, my son… Tommy.


Lately, it seems this photo keeps ‘popping up’ to grab my attention.  I’m not certain as to …why?  I sit and study it …to ‘see’… if there’s something there… to comfort me, something that I’ve missed.


I wonder if his wife took this photo as they drove to Myrtle Beach?  Or one of the children?  They were in there, also.  I’m so thankful to … whoever… took it.  This photo means the world to me.