Grandma turned 90 on the day before my wedding, and my uncle was able to bring her from the nursing home to attend. She sat in the front row with her older sister, Faye. She died the following March.
Grandma lived only a mile away from us when we were growing up, so I saw her several times a week. She would watch my two sisters and me when Mom had errands to run. She loved to shop and was always buying us dresses. Having two boys of my own, I can now understand how much she enjoyed buying “girly” things. She also had two sisters, like me, who lived within a five-mile radius of her. I always imagined my sisters and me being like them when we were old–best friends but also fighting at times.
Grandma and Grandpa had a little rental house on their farm, and almost all the grandchildren lived in it at some point. I stayed there for a few years after I moved back from Florida. Looking back, I’m so glad I got to spend the time with Grandma, but oh, it was so smothering. Especially after living on my own for several years in the city. I knew, at the time, that I would look back on those days after she was gone and wish for that time back. But, it was hard back then. Now, how I would love to spend some time hearing the old stories at her kitchen table that she told over and over again.
Grandma was a very nurturing lady and always thinking of others before herself. I thought of her when my first son was born and knew she would have made me a pot of vegetable soup and sugar cream pie if she were still here. She always had a cake or cookies on the kitchen table when we visited, and sugar cream pie was one of her specialties. Christmas and Thanksgiving were not the same without it.
Grandma would have been 97 this month, and I always fondly remember her this time of year. I would make a sugar cream pie in her honor, but it unfortunately doesn’t support my weight loss goals. Here’s the recipe if you want to make this Indiana classic: