January 2020 in One Moment a Day

January was our last month in North America and saw our arrival in New Zealand.  There was a little running around with a business meeting in Texas, wine work in California, and I was able to squeeze in one last visit with Oma.  This was especially precious for me.  At the age of 101, Oma has passed as gracefully as she lived.

Oma taught me all the names of the wildflowers up in the Sierra where we camp.  She instilled in me a love for God.  She was an example of kindness, steadfastness, and had a powerful, yet quiet strength.  Oma taught us all so many beautiful camp songs and some funny ones too.  She showed us her favorite hikes.  She will be remembered saying things like, “I used to climb the peaks, and now I walk the valleys.”  She was an educated naturalist, and even in her later years was memorizing the Latin names for plants she loved.  Oma was a wonderful mother who inspired immense love from her children and their spouses.  She was an amazing Grandmother, blending that strength with love and received quick obedience, respect, and love in return.  She had a fabulous sense of humor and could cut to the chase and drill down to the important fact in any conversation.

Oma was so many things to so many people throughout her amazing life.  To me, she will always be my Oma, and I will always love her, and now I shall miss her.  I can only hope that I will carry a little bit of her forward and live in a way that she would be proud of.








  1. Debi. Vawter says:

    So sorry to hear about Oma. You have so many fond memories… She sounds like a wonderful lady…
    Love and hugs,
    Aunt Debi

  2. Scott Gerber says:

    We need more of her in our world! I feel your good fortune to have had her in your lives. She clearly represented what was good in life and transcended the shortcomings that we all live with. It’s now your turn to carry on her legacy by all that you and your children do. She left those responsibilities in great hands! Thank you for sharing.
    Best Scott Gerber ⛵️

  3. Marianne McGriff says:

    Thank you for sharing such a beautiful tribute to Oma…you, your Mother and Karen are embodiments of Oma’s spirit. It’s a Joy and a Privilege to be a part of your family…God Bless, Marianne

  4. Celia Wheeler says:

    Misty eyes hearing your sweet words about Oma. She welcomed us into her home at our first Sacramento Thanksgiving just a few years ago. ❤️

  5. Douglas Vawter says:

    Thanks Anne! Such great memories; what a wonderful tribute to Oma. Adelaide, thanks for providing the wonderful background music!! The pictures of Banyan (upon your return) brought to life the telephone discussions we experienced with you as you discuss the maintenance tasks you have been working on! Now it is time to entertain guests and see New Zealand!! Love to all!

  6. Liz says:

    Oh, Annie- I will miss your Oma. She was such a fabulous person, and I agree with another friend, our world needs more people like her. I sit here, reading and weeping the loss this world has had of several wonderful people recently (grandparents and young friends). I’m so glad you got some precious moments with her before returning to the boat. All our hugs and loves, Lizzy

  7. Anne Spiger says:

    What a wonderful lady! I remember being at Cannon Beach when she hosted you all. We can all learn from her example of how to live gracefully and graciously. She blessed and was blessed in return.

  8. Chris says:

    Gosh I love the videos. To see a visual of what you guys are doing is great. Glad things are going well. Blessings on your journey.

  9. Laura Ritter says:

    Hi Banyan, always wonderful to read your updates. Sorry to hear about Oma, sounds like an amazing life she lived. We are in the States for a short visit, then will head back to Oz and are excited to do some traveling around there. Sending hugs from Maia!

  10. Barbara Vawter says:

    A beautiful tribute to precious Oma. She Blessed your dear family and friends in so many ways. We loved visiting Oma, she was so uplifting, cheerful, encouraging and had a deep faith in her Heavenly Father.
    Annie, thank you for sharing your memories. Adelaide I loved your music and miss your music here in Zionsville. Isa and you are blessed with much creativity and love of music.

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