My grandma, Hattie Byer was a mother of nine children. She had her first child, my Aunt Evelyn Hushman on November 9, 1928, when she was 19 years old. She had her youngest child, my Aunt Sandy Pattan on October 26, 1945, when she was 36 years old. She had nine children in 17 years. That is a lot for any mom to handle, but Grandma Byer was well able to handle her children. She was a tiny woman, barely 5 feet tall…in her tall days, but her kids knew that her absence of height had nothing to do with her ability to discipline her kids. Messing with Grandma was not a healthy idea.

While Grandma could easily handle her nine children, she could also bring the sunshine and happiness into her home. Grandma got her kids together to do the chores, and while they were working, they would always sing, laugh, and tell jokes. Grandma had no problem making chores fun…well, as fun as possible. Nevertheless, the kids all have fond memories of those days when everyone was together at home doing chores and making happy memories. We all like to think back of our childhood with its fond memories. Of course, some family memories are better than others, and the memories that Grandma Byer created for her children were of the very best kind.

I remember spending time with my grandparents. If you behaved yourself, you were going to have the best time, but I’m here to tell you that if you got out of line, Grandma was not worried about whether or not her children would be upset about her disciplinary tactics. Of course, we…the grandchildren…knew that if we got in trouble with Grandma…trouble with our parents automatically followed. The best we could hope for was that Grandma didn’t tell our parents what trouble we were in. It was our only hope of avoiding the inevitable “whooping” from our parents was to pray that Grandma kept our secret. Today is Grandma Byer’s birthday. Happy birthday in Heaven, Grandma. We love and miss you very much.

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