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Legacy – anything handed down from the past, as from an ancestor or predecessor.

This word has been on my mind a lot since this past May. My grandmother, Beverly, age 79, passed away leaving in my mind a charming and impressionable legacy. She was the baby of her family succeeding her closest sister by five years. Beverly was diagnosed with Rheumatic Fever (RF) when she was 14 years old.  As a result of the RF she continued to live her life with an enlarged heart – twice the size of any normal human heart.

In classic the story, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, the Grinch’s heart grows until he joyfully celebrates each little Who in Whoville. So, too, was my grandmother: exceedingly loving. She had a love for her children and grandchildren that went beyond measure. She treasured the people in her life. Her generation cherished time with people, enjoying interactive games and chatting. By contrast, my generation seems too busy and fast-paced, often missing the real connection we could have with others.

I want to live the way she lived, loving everyone around me and especially the little hearts and minds that I can directly impact. My grandmother laughed and cried at the same time; she taught me to be okay with showing emotion no matter how silly it may feel. The jubilant way she showed her emotions was infectious.

I find myself doing and saying many of the things she used to: laughing and crying at the same time, and understanding the pure joy and gratitude of that emotion; saying things like “cute little pie face;” and calling my daughter “dolly.” Her legacy lives on through these borrowed words, actions and emotions. She may no longer be with us, but her legacy lives through the privileged lives she touched. May I have the grace to live the way she lived: joyfully loving others with an enlarged heart.

Growing up in a small northern Minnesota town, Ashley Lundgren has always had one very unique gift, helping others find great style! Along her journey she attended Crown College and completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Fashion Merchandising through Westwood College of Colorado. During this time, she met and married a wonderful business owner, Dane Lundgren, They currently they have two darling children, a daughter and infant son! You can follow Ashley on Instagram or visit her at