I’d like to tell you all a beautiful story about an ordinary woman who lived in extraordinary life. It all begin on March 17th, 1929 when the oldest daughter of Sabino Salas and Fracesquita Martinez was born into this earthly life. She was accompanied on this journey by her brother Archie, her sisters Celia and Eliza, and an infant Juanita who was welcomed back into the arms of our Lord soon after birth, and most recently welcome to our mother, grandmother, and sister, Balbina home.
On January 5th 1946, Balbina was united in marriage to her tall, dark and handsome Alfonso Lobato. They lived, loved and laughed and soon they were blessed with the births of their children Lawrence and the Frances, Connie, Patricia and finally, Sherry. Life is a weathered storm they navigated together, notably, after their loss of Connie and Patricia in infancy. However wealth is measured in far more ways than money, and they were rich in the love and support of their family to see them through. The waves of life hed not quite turned, and Grandma was left too soon alone, young and widowed with four children, who needed her even more desperately than before. It would have been so easy for a weaker woman to give up, to lose faith, to quit. Grandma wasn’t that woman. She fought and she struggled, she laughed and she cried, and ultimately she succeeded in raising her four beautiful children to be the four amazing adults she prided on claiming as her own.
Grandma was a woman of few words but innumerable laughs; a young soul with an old heart. She was a woman who touched our family so deeply and completely, that she will forever be ours. One day during a family get together, Grandma was asked what she would like to drink. She coyly smirked and replied, “A mi, me gusta esa soda, como se llama? Coors. Grandma was also a huge fan of sweets, especially M&Ms. This was quite apparent when visiting. Grandma would produce M&Ms from every nook and cranny.
Grandma had a beautiful spirit that allowed to live harmoniously with all of God’s creatures, Pat the parrot, Peter the owl, a baby raton found in the bosque and the family of water snakes that invaded her home ceremoniously every summer. The same beautiful spirit cultivated her own floral paradise in her yard, as well as, her window sill jungle. Sick and wounded plants inevitably found their way to the familys’ emergency room: Grandma’s kitchen. With a bit of her magic soil, a little water, and her tender greenthumb, they were nursed back to even better health than before.
Grandma was always way ahead of her time. You could always count on her to choose the latest trends, most recently her fashionable, iridescent, purple coat. She always ensured her grandchildren were dressed in style, with clothing she lovingly hand picked for birthdays and Christmases.
These are all random out of the ordinary things, that when strung together make each of our relationships with Grandma extraordinary. These are the type of things people do on a regular basis that you don’t realize change the world. But when you took your last breath, Grandma, and closed your eyes and begun your final journey home, you had changed the world in your own little way. You gave us each life, wisdom and love that we can carry with us for all eternity. Your great- granddaughter mimicked all of our thoughts when she saw you the final time and exclaimed, ” Mom, Grandma Habato is such a pretty angel.
Grandma because of you deep spirituality, and the faith you have instilled in your children and grandchildren, we know you are safe in the arms of our Lord. You are truly home at last