In memory of Alice

October 7, 2009 at 11:52 pm 1 comment

Yesterday Alice Kipp, a woman who I began visiting in the retirement home over the summer, passed away.

I hadn’t seen her since school started – first I was busy, and then she was in and out of the hospital. I had been planning to go visit her when I head she was dying, and her sons were with her. Alice (91 years old!) loved to talk about her sons – she’d show me pictures of them every time I visited. She’d also ply me with chocolates – she loved chocolate (sometimes I think that’s all she ate!), and she loved to share. She’d tell me how she’s always give them to one resident who didn’t talk much, and how it’d make him smile.

Paper cuts by Alice
Some paper cuts by Alice.

We first met because of my roommate who works as a CNA there – Alice loved to cut paper into designs, as do I. It was suggested we could meet, and I’m so glad we did. She gave me a pair of cuticle scissors to cut with the very first time we met, and we’d go through her collection of papers and she’d gift them to me. I never went home empty handed, despite protests. I hung a picture on her wall once for her, and together we cleaned and framed a gift she’d cut for a newlywed couple.

Paper cut by Alice
A Christmas card paper cut by Alice.

Her room was always messy, and when I came to visit she’d lament about it, but we had great fun going through the piles. Papers and patterns and beads and letters – lots of letters. From friends and family, even some letters she was intending to mail in reply. And all the paper cutouts – angels and shoes and pigs and flowers and every other imaginable thing, delicately cut out with her hands that trembled behind the cuticle scissors.

Paper cut with paper Alice gave me
Alice gave me both the paper and the pattern (on the left) for this chicken.

I wish we’d had more time, but I’ll treasure what we shared. I will continue to cut paper, including the sheets of papers she gave me, and hopefully I can someday inspire someone young like she did me.


Entry filed under: Busy hands, Happenings.

Junk, begone! Round 1! Squirrel Aspirations & Black Walnuts!

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Debra Purdue  |  January 31, 2012 at 1:20 am

    I think Alice was a very clever lady, I just love paper cutouts and wish I too could of learnt to do …just love the chickens.


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