This is the tale of a lovely little girl from Greensboro, NC who grew up to become the most wonderful mom. She deserves to be celebrated, this is her story! Her parents Bob and Janet Apple awaited their second child’s arrival.
The year was 1956 and the wait was over on April 22nd. She was born Anna Margaret Apple. She came home to an older sister named Deborah…
and soon after, two brothers joined Team Apple; Marty and then David completed this happy, close knit family.
(Thats her in the chair!)
She said that her childhood was full of fun. “Mother (Grandma Apple) would play with us all the time. She was a good mother. She let us play in the pouring rain and let the spring at the end of the street wash over us when it was really coming down! We had adventures in the woods, through the creek. She would hang quilts over clothes lines like they were tents…she even let us sleep out there sometimes. We were surrounded by pets, siblings and cousins.”
Anna was a shy child, very timid. She loved to play but really valued her alone time. “I loved to be left alone. I loved to read and ride my bike.” She also had a penchant for running away #spicytaurus in the most adorable way. #isaidilikealonetime Look how adorable!
She loved babydolls and said she always dreamed of being a mom. “My teachers would ask me what I wanted to be when I grew up and I would always say that I wanted to be a mommy and they would always try and coax me into being a teacher or a nurse…I would tell them what they wanted to hear, but I knew what I wanted.” In high school, my mom and the Apple gang moved to Little Washington.
Her first job was at Dr. Moore’s office where she checked patients in and got their charts ready. She loved it. Soon after in 1972, she met a cute boy on the street in Greenville. His name was John Beard. In her words…”He talked, he was funny, intelligent, so cute, had a great sense of humor. He wasn’t like any boys I knew. And he wanted to talk to me.” (I loved that line…the cute boy who wanted to talk to the shy girl #swoon)
Look at those hippies! This one is my favorite!
It wasn’t long before they tied the knot in a small ceremony at Grandma and Grandpa Apple’s house.
They moved to Raleigh, the first time being away from her mother whom she adored and soon it was time to start their own family! She stayed very close to her family, no matter the distance!
In February of 78, my bester was born and all my mom’s childhood dreams came true!
That is Gigi holding Kelly Courtney and my parents circa that time!
My mom said she was so nervous being pregnant. She was so scared of the delivery. But that her sister Debbie was so excited that it was contagious and the joy overtook the fear. ” I loved being a mommy. To me it was so much fun. I loved holding you girls, rocking you, bath time was always fun.” She said, “Kelly taught me patience. She was a headstrong kid, more like your dad. Seeing her so happy now, it’s just so great to see. We loved playing babydolls together and she loved for me to read to her and put together puzzles. She loved bath time and was always so fun.” Then I ruined Kelly’s cush only child existence by showing up five years later in the fall of 82.
I was a mischievous little sweetheart
and I inherited my mothers shyness…at least back then! We were buds from the start! By the way, this is my dream way of sitting with people!
“I think I came into my own when you were born. You wanted me, you would cling to me. We had so much fun, singing, laying in your bed. I understood you because you were like me.” What I remember from growing up is that our mom made everything an adventure. We would have picnics outside in our own yard,
or if it was raining , carpet picnics inside. We were always at a park or museum!
She would play with us and let us help cook. I always remember her rubbing my arms and singing me to sleep in my teeny little bed. Wherever we went she never met a stranger. She was so kind and so into letting her kids discover life and explore and be creative. She never spoke to us like we were children. You never questioned whether you were loved. She talked to us and really listened. I would literally cling to her, follow her into every room and it was so comforting. I spent the first five years of my life hiding behind my mothers skirt! We were one cute family!
Our only professional family photo to date! Look at this fun, family filled life this gorgeous woman led!
When we were a little older she went back to work at SSI with her sister and eventually Kelly. “I got to party plan which was right up my alley, I got to travel a bit and it was a lot of fun. It was like a big family there.” Noticing a theme!? Much like Grandma Apple, family is this womans life!!!
Now her career is literally Nanny to her two adorable grandkids…a dream come true! She spends her days playing school, war, Monopoly, Mine Craft, ball, bikes, drawing and has entirely new boy adventures with Wyatt and Chase! Kelly had this to say, “I never realized until I had kids of my own how amazing and hard of a job it is! And it made me appreciate my own mom a million times more than I could have ever imagined. The fact that she helps me raise my kids and seeing her as a grandmother is one of the greatest joys of my life and makes me forever grateful.”
Much like her mothers house was, moms house is covered with pictures of her little ones!
She has now been married for over 40 years to my dad. I asked him what his favorite things about her were and he had this to say, “Anna is a great mother, wife, person, caregiver. She is compassionate and caring.” I asked what he likes to do with her. “We like to do crossword puzzles, go out to eat, work in the yard, we like to do projects together, play with our grandkids, do stuff with family and we love to go on vacations together.” So sweet.
With all this life experience I asked her a few questions…this is how we spent the afternoon after celebrating mothers day. Snuggled up on a bed, interviewing my super best buddy and pouring over old pictures! #heaven
I asked her to describe herself in 5 words. She chose: Happy, contented, excited, peaceful and purposeful.
Anna’s thoughts on marriage: You have your bad times but the good times outweigh it.
Thoughts on Parenthood: The hardest part is always thinking, Am I doing this right!?
How have you changed: “I’m more comfortable in my own skin which I wasn’t when I was little. I was so shy. It’s not easy when you’re the shy one…you are just constantly thinking, I’ve got to get up on that stage and you want me to do what!?”
What helped you find your voice: “Time, having children. Knowing that you literally aren’t going to die of embarrassment. I don’t think I’m shy anymore. I prefer one on one but I do ok in crowds.”
How do you like to fill your days now: “Adventures, Spending time with family, puzzles, pinterest, crafts, reading…”
My mom is the craftiest little Martha Stewart. She can make anything, she can draw, sew, write, make cards, pillows, curtains…she has an entire room devoted to crafting!
She loves making dolls and gifts for others, but especially the kids in the family! So that is the epic life and time of Anna Apple Beard. I am so eternally grateful that my mom is my best friend. She was such a loving and giving mom growing up. She is fiercely loyal to this day and continues to place family first. Her home is the site of most Apple family gatherings and today, Mothers Day, was no exception. The Beards got together to celebrate her and my sister for being the great moms that they are!
We ate a healthy lunch and played with the kids, told stories on the porch and did our favorite thing…spend time together!
Mothers Day was amazing, but a little bittersweet! It was the first one without Gigi. It ws especially hard on my mom. I can’t even imagine. To my mother…Mom, I hope you know that You are doing her so proud! You now have an epic back porch complete with a swing…what is more Gigi than that. You are the center of this family and your love is so warm. You create such a snuggly family gathering that people will always want to flock to you and associate holidays with your lovely, inviting home. You remind me of her everyday. You are so very strong and very loved by your little Beard bunch and countless others. When you were talking about all the fun things your mom did with you, all I kept thinking was…that sounds exactly like the wonderful childhood you gave us! You are the best mom. Kelly and I are oh so lucky and I hope we make you feel as special as you have always made us feel. You are so sacrificing of yourself for others. You have taught me what hard work, sacrifice and joy look like. You are the most giving person. You deserve to be pampered and celebrated all the days of your life. Your laugh gets me so tickled. I cherish every moment that I get to spend with you and I will never take our time together for granted. Thank you for being my mom, best friend, champion, cheerleader, rally-er, comforter, supporter, psychiatrist, partner in crime #wecangetourownchristmastrees and most of all, thank you for being you. #donteverchange Cheers to you Anna, my cup runeth over.
And Happy Mothers Day Gigi and Grandma Beard. You were both very missed but certainly not forgotten! Xoxo Much love to all the moms out there!
Family first for life!
One last Anna!
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