Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Joanne's LeaveTaking

Went to Joanne’s funeral at the RC Church in Wadena with full intentions of attending the lunch at Margo Hall afterward. Something came up and we came home instead. Scott went back to work and I lit a candle for Joanne, then drew a tarot card: Ace of Swords. I can’t help smiling. It’s perfect: A Problem Has Been Overcome. She has been released.

The rest of today will be about Joanne. I am going to bake her recipe for chocolate cake and open a new bottle of red wine and say … goodbye? … to her. Not sure. If there is an afterlife, then … we shall commune. In my imagination we will anyway.

I don't know why all of us Johnson kids didn't call her Auntie Joanne, because in a way that's what she was to us. 

I've said before how good she was to Mom during Mom's last year ("She must spend every moment of her day thinking about nice things to do for me!" Mom said. They had a special friendship, those two) and how, after Mom passed, Joanne took special care of Mom's grown children by remembering her with such sweet appreciation.  What a lovely thing that was, for her to do. So kind, so welcome, and so healing and supportive and thoughtful.

Her obituary and some photos have been posted to Joanne's blog. See them HERE.

Joanne had a one-of-a-kind sense of humour. She loved her Wadena News and looked forward to the crossword every week. She had a sweet tooth and enjoyed baking fabulous treats. Her husband Gerald and my dad Don have been mistaken for each other upon occasion. Our families did a lot of visiting together when all us kids were kids, and our parents and our parents' parents were all friends. Between Joanne and Mom, you'd get a run for your money at the game of Trivial Pursuit. They were real buddies; more like sisters.

When Joanne and Gerald visited Mom and Dad in Osoyoos, B.C. 

Here's Joanne's chocolate cake recipe: CLICK HERE.

Here's to you, Joanne. Don't be a stranger.

Left to right: Julius Bohl (Joanne's father-in-law), Elmer Braaten, Marion Otterdahl (Joanne's mom), Evelyn Bohl (Joanne's mother-in-law), not sure who the next two are, then Edna and John Johnson, my dad's parents.  So ... our families have been friends for a long time. Reta, is that Irvin beside Evelyn? And who is the lady beside Irvin (if Irvin is behind the camera, then who is that man?). Here they are all out at Pavillion Beach south of Kuroki.