Today is my Grandma’s 82nd birthday. We spent the afternoon with her yesterday and we will see her again today. I grew up next to my maternal grandparents and they taught me so much. I was five years old when my parents divorced and when my mom had to go out of town for trainings we stayed with them. My brothers and I spent our summers at their house and got off the bus in the afternoon there. My mom still lives next door to my Grandmother and we are only about five miles away. We share middle names and a love for card making.
In honor of my Grandma’s birthday, I thought I would make a list of things I have learned from her over the years.
*If your husband repeatedly picks you up every time a camera comes out, make sure your dress is down
*When having a family gathering, it’s better to have a little more food than you need, so unexpected guests feel welcomed and can join you.
*You can make rum cake with just about any kind of alcohol that people give you as gifts at Christmas time…(My Grandpa was a carpenter and some of his clients often brought him fancy alcohol for Christmas. He was not a drinker, so he would put it in the basement and whatever kind they had is what she would use for rum cake. So far, that I know of, she has made Wild Turkey rum cake, beer rum cake, rum rum cake and Jack Daniels rum cake!)
*Always keep a box of tissues in your car.
*Make sure you are surrounded by family on the holidays.
*Wear an apron when baking and cooking.
*Make do with what you have.
*Sprinkles on food makes everything taste better. Especially buttered toast while waiting for the school bus.
*Always have pictures of your kids and grandkids and great-grandkids on display.
*Grandma’s always have rooms on their laps for great-grandkids.
*It’s alright to be silly and have a little fun.
*I am so blessed to still have my Grandmother in my life.
*Honor life, no matter how short. My Grandpa’s mother buried 5 of her babies before they reached the age of 2. They are all buried next to each other in the same cemetery as my two children. I remember going to the cemeteries with her and my mother on Memorial Day (Decoration Day) and she always had flowers for those five little graves. After we Shyla passed away, we received an official condolence from the state representative and several copies to give to our family members. Grandma framed that letter and hung it on the wall next to photos of her living great grandchildren. After Jakin passed away, we dried the flowers from his funeral and put them in empty glass heart shaped ornaments. Grandma hung that little heart shaped ornament on that wall as well. That means more to me than words can say.
I have learned so much from her and I hope when I enter my eighties, I still vacuum my own house, pick up sticks out of the yard and host all my family for all holidays.
Happy Birthday Grandma!