Remembering PoPo


This past Wednesday, July 27th, my beautiful grandmother passed away.

PoPo Portrait

My PoPo (the Chinese term for maternal grandmother, and what my siblings and I all called her) was a strong and loving women, who raised a family of eight (8!!) children.

Yep, that’s my mom rocking those sweet (and so on trend!) cat-eyes on the right.

Those of you who have been reading this blog for a while may already know that my grandmother had not been in the greatest health for the past several years, so while nobody can say that her passing was a surprise, she is missed so deeply nonetheless. I’m grateful that my mother and her siblings were all there by her side until the very end.

Our family

jenny's wedding

PoPo leaves behind an amazing legacy in her children and children-in-law, 14 grandchildren (yeah, I have a lot of cousins), and even got to meet her first two great-grandchildren.

I savor memories of summers spent at her home in Virginia Beach, watching her sing Cantonese karaoke in the living room, letting our crazy gaggle of grandkids run amuck, cooking us seriously amazing and authentic Chinese dinners (which, of course, I never truly appreciated when I was young, but would kill for right now.)

She was an incredibly strong woman, and the love she held for us, for her entire family, was evident across age and culture and language. I think I mentioned back when I got married that almost every single member of my family on my mom’s side was there. My aunts and uncles and cousins moved Heaven and Earth to change their flights, jump on buses, and outrun the storm in their cars — and they all made it here in time for my blizzard wedding.

That’s the kind of family my PoPo raised. The kind that is there for each other, natural disaster or nah, because family really is the only thing.

Mom and Dad's Wedding

我爱你, 婆婆. I love you, PoPo.


  1. Ellesays:

    My deepest sympathies to you and your family Gretchen. It’s hard to say goodbye, especially to such an amazing woman. Hope with the days, weeks and months to come, it hurts a little less and you can remember the good times you had with your lovely PoPo xxx

  2. Jennysays:

    What a beautiful tribute. I’m so glad her love lives on in your family.

  3. I am sorry for your loss. Beautiful memories.

  4. Emilysays:

    Missing you! I hope your family has found a bit of peace these last few months.

  5. Robinsays:

    Where did u go?

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