Sunday, January 13, 2008

Photo of the Week: 13 January 2008

(Click on the picture to make it bigger)

My grandmother Alice "Dorothea" Keen Dysart and me, shortly after my birth. After I was born, she came to our apartment in Seattle and visited us (notice my parents' fun cement-block bookcase behind us). I was born two days after her birthday.

"Grandma Dot" always had a beautiful yard and garden. My brother B.C. and I visited her and Grandpa for a week one summer, and since we lived on the Oregon coast and were used to milder weather, their town (Walla Walla, Washington) seemed incredibly hot. The sun would heat up their boxwood hedge by the front porch and make it smell so wonderful - the scent still reminds me of Grandma's house.

She was a funny, feisty, peppery little lady. She loved chocolates, and would buy herself a box, eat a few chocolates, hide the box, forget where she hid it, and buy herself a new box. After she died, almost-full boxes of chocolates were discovered here and there all over the house. Other than that, her house was immaculate. She played the organ and kept a notebook of the songs she practiced or played. Sometimes we'd go to her house and her organ would be turned up so loud, she couldn't hear the doorbell, but we could hear her outside. Judging from her 8-track tape collection, she loved Elvis Presley and Tom Jones. One funny discovery was a tape called "Music to Strip By."

Grandma loved keeping up with the local law enforcement, fire department, and ambulance activity, and always had at least one police scanner turned on and making noise on her hutch. She liked keeping track of the numbered codes of each department and would type up lists of the codes to post near her scanner, so she could see who was doing what. When she died, I inherited her manual typewriter and one of her half-finished scanner code lists was still in the typewriter case.

Her memorial is here.


  1. This is a great story. My favorite part? The almost full boxes of chocolate! And your inheritance from her is truly a treasure.

    Thanks for sharing!

  2. my folks still have the same concrete block / plank bookcase setup! ROFL

    love the story, though. I love to remember the little special things about my grandparents.