An online tribute to Grandma

Edith Reed works in her pristine yard and garden at her home in Salt Lake City, May 29, 2018. At 100 years young, Edith continues to exercise daily, tend to her large yard and garden and teach piano lessons.

The caption on the picture above was written by the photographer. He visited Grandma in 2018 to take pictures for Utah Life Magazine. I wrote the story and it was one of the best writing assignments I’ve ever been paid for.

I wrote Grandma’s obituary this week. It was a costly writing assignment for the family. Obituaries are expensive. And family said I could make it long. With COVID-19 restrictions, we will only have a graveside service. So that was a little like the funeral replacement.

That, and publishing a website.

Mick will be streaming Grandma’s funeral. We posted information about it in her obituary, but I wanted a place to share the recorded stream as well. I was sitting out in the patio last week. I had my phone in my hand, texting family about obituary things, sitting on the blue couch that was once Natalie’s, and I thought… “I wonder if is available.” It wasn’t. Nobody’s doing anything with the site. Just some dumb domain flipper bought it, is sitting on it, and hoping somebody really wants it and will pay some absurd price to buy it from them.

Anyway, I checked edithreed next and there it was, unclaimed. I claimed it. I texted my mom. What about a website, I asked her?

We now have a website and I’m pretty happy about it. It’s not perfect, but it’s filled with pictures and memories and information about Grandma for family and friends.

Edith Carlquist Reed | 1917-2020

A few comments on the process, for my own record:

  • Tried searching through Digital Ocean first to host a webpage
  • Didn’t feel like using WordPress that I use for two other sites
  • Asked web guy/friend/coworker Matt if he had a suggestion
  • He tossed out several ideas then said, “wait I know, try webflow”
  • Signed up for free account and started working with webflow designer
  • Works so well and creates really good layout / design using containers and elements inside containers, etc
  • Started designing and needed lots of pictures, too, so scraped through my Google photos and a few other spots
  • Pulled out her old Christmas cards to include some thoughts
  • Had problems setting up a comment page so had to drop that (maybe could add later, but requires a Zapier integration which might also require $$)
  • Grabbed a signature from one of her Christmas cards, pulled it out in Photoshop, then sent to Matt who cleaned it up in Illustrator and sent me an svg file
  • Matt also made my little icons for grit, gratitude, and grin
  • Shared with people on Facebook so I hope it gets out to family and friends so they can read about her!

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