Paying Homage to a Special Aunt

by Alli

This post, Paying Homage To A Special Aunt, is truly written from the heart. My aunt Jane is one of a kind! 

Let me make this crystal clear: I love all of my aunts. I really do. They are all special one-of-a-kind aunts.  

However, there are two aunts, one from my dad’s side of the family and one from my mom’s side, that are so dear to my heart, that I can barely write this post without tears in my eyes.  

Both of these aunts were single while I was growing up, so they focused all their love and attention on their nieces and nephews. Hey, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that!  🙂

Memories Light The Corners of My Mind

There are so many memories flooding my mind, that I only hope I can give this post the justice it so deserves.

Let’s grab a cup of coffee and talk about Aunt Jane, shall we? Oh, but I never called her aunt, just Jane. This was not done out of disrespect, mind you. It was done because she just looked and acted far too young to be anyone’s aunt.  She will remain forever 27 in my mind!

Jane is the youngest of my dad’s brothers and sisters. As a matter of fact, she is only about 15 years older than me. While I was growing up, Jane lived in Atlanta and would spend part of her summer vacation (gardening and fishing) with us. As a bonus, she spent every Christmas with us. And she gave off-the-chain Christmas gifts.

When I was a teen, I always received the big Estee Lauder (it was a lot bigger back then) special addition Christmas makeup set, along with lots and lots of other goodies, from my aunt Jane. Ahhh, I was in makeup heaven!

Jane - spending a summer vacation at our house. Look at the fish we caught that day!

Jane – spending a summer vacation at our house. Look at the fish we caught that day!

During the dog days of summer, my sister and I would spend a week or two in Atlanta with Jane. She would spoil us rotten.  

Trying New Foods With Jane

My first preteen taste of Chinese food was with Aunt Jane. And she didn’t take us to a strip mall, either. I remember sitting in a fancy restaurant with pristine white tablecloths and the dressed-to-the-nines waiter lifting the shiny silver domes from each tray as the wonderful aroma wafted up and assailed (in a good way) my nostrils.  

And if I remember correctly, my sister, Melinda, wasn’t as fond of this new-to-us cuisine. We would stop by a fast food place on the way home. I could be completely wrong but that is the memory I have.  🙂

Shopping and Underground Atlanta With Jane

We would go shopping, catch a movie or concert, visit Underground Atlanta (first strawberry daiquiri; virgin, of course???), try new and different restaurants, play cutthroat bridge and just plain have fun!  

Jane didn’t treat us like children that needed to be scolded and shushed. Instead, she treated us like princesses that deserved to be pampered, petted, and introduced to a whole new world!  And not only did she spoil us, but she was always kind, considerate, and attentive.

Here we are! See how young she looked? That's me, Jane & my sis, Melinda.

Here we are! See how young she looked? That’s me, Jane & my sis, Melinda.

Aunt Jane Is Still Cool, Hip and Chic

In turn, we thought Jane was cool, hip, chic, mod, and sophisticated!  And we thought Atlanta was the greatest place on earth. I kinda, sorta, maybe, still think that! You can take a girl out of Georgia, but you can never take Georgia out of the girl!

Alas, I grew up, got married, had kids, moved far away, came back to my southern roots (a short day’s drive away from home). And every time I hear a song by Patsy Cline, stroll by the Estee Lauder counter or eat a steamed dumpling, I think of Jane, who is still the ultimate aunt! I love you, girl!  Let’s do lunch!

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Bethany July 11, 2013 - 9:12 am

She does seem like an AWESOME aunt! I love her dress in the first photo. 🙂

Alli July 11, 2013 - 9:21 am

I do, too! It’s so Grace Kelly!

Sarah July 11, 2013 - 4:05 pm

My favorite aunt died in 2006 at 57. Sounds like she was a lot like your aunt, especially when it comes to giving the Best Presents Ever. :0)

Alli July 11, 2013 - 5:36 pm

So sorry for your loss, but I know you have great memories! Special aunts are just so special! 🙂

Fred McRee July 11, 2013 - 7:57 pm

Jane was the first person I hired after I went to work with Ernst & Ernst. Over the next twenty five years she not only became my trusted, loyal and efficient associate but also a dear friend. Our paths have seldom crossed since my retirement just over 20 years ago and I miss her very much. She is a wonderful person and you are lucky to have had her as your aunt.

Fred McRee

Alli July 12, 2013 - 6:13 am

Mr. McRee, Jane thought the world of you and talked about you often – in the best way possible! I am so blessed to have Jane in my life. Thank you for taking the time to comment.


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