Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


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TBT–Granddad’s Garden

Whenever I think about Grandmother and Granddad, there’s usually food involved. Delicious, wonderful, fantastic food.

Grandmother and Granddad

Grandmother and Granddad

One of my first memories is of Granddad Ray’s garden there in Old ‘Ford on the other side of the garage. For as long as I can remember, Granddad always had a garden. Or three. Once, I got in trouble for picking his green tomatoes.

“Honest. All I did was look at the thing and it came off in my hand.” (Not sure they believed it.)

Sometimes in the summertime, we’d get to go to the farm and work with Granddad, and that usually meant we’d go to his garden. That was the best job ever, because Granddad usually took sweet lemonade (actually, a sweet orangy-lemon drink) and we got to eat a watermelon or two if they were ripe. Fresh, warm tomatoes, right off the vine, made lunch delicious!

We lived next door to Grandmother and Granddad in C-Town (and in the same house with them in Old ‘Ford) and had lunch with Grandmother most days.

Grandmother and Granddad, a few years later

Grandmother and Granddad, a few years later

Granddad didn’t just raise lots of food, he shared the veggies with the whole family, and very lucky friends.

I loved it in the spring when he dug new potatoes. Grandmother would boil them, slip off the peels and then fry the whole boiled potatoes! She’d also cook new potatoes in with the green beans Granddad raised. Bacon drippings gave it the best flavor! Spring onions and a bowl of those green beans was a meal that would make your tongue lap your brains out! (That’s a Daddy/Granddad saying.)

Sometimes, Grandmother would fry the mountain of squash that Granddad brought in. She’d cut up a crookneck in thin slices, soak them in salt water, coat them in flour and fry. YUM-MY! Better than potato chips. (Grandma Reeves wouldn’t eat squash because she said it was “poor folks’ food.” Made me glad to be poor!)

 

Notice, there’s a theme here. Fry it or add bacon drippings to it (or fry it in bacon drippings) and no matter what you’re cooking, it’ll taste great! (And your grandchildren will have very happy memories about the time they spent with you.) Might not be the healthiest eats in the world, but it made me feel very loved.

Do you have foody memories of your grandparents? What’s your favorite?

 


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Inside Signs

Was this past weekend not the most beautiful two days you’ve ever seen in your life? Okay, if not THE most beautiful, they were among the top five, weren’t they?

The temps were perfect, what leaves are left after this drought are just starting to change, the grass isn’t growing quite as fast (although it might if we had a little rain) and I think I’ve come alive again. Or maybe I just woke up after a long summer’s nap.

How do I know? The signs. No, not outside signs like air temp and grass color. The inside me signs, such as–

  • I finally got the total revamp of my office good and started. No kidding. After all this time of piddling, I’ve got Gimme Bags stacked as high as an elephant’s eye. (Need one?) And a few books I’m never going to read stacked up to give away. AND I’m clearing a path to move the thingy behind my desk to the west wall of my office where the bed used to be. I’ll dig out the desk and move it next.
  • I watched a cooking show and actually had the energy to want to make what the woman there was whipping up. No, I didn’t make it. (Duh.) I just had the energy to want to. 🙂

(Isn’t it funny how TV chefs never need recipes? Or to measure/chop or work hard? Or have trouble thinking of something for supper? Or have something flop? Must be magic in the camera. But I digress.)

  • I saw a picture of bread someone else had baked, and I wanted to make it, too. (The energy to want to. See?)
  • Ordered a book on baking bread. (More energy resurge. Get ready world. I don’t work in front of cameras.)
  • I started looking for and finding a few trees that were changing colors as we drove to Stillwater. (One of my favorite fall things is autumn foliage.)
  • I had the urge to start exercising–walking, riding my bike, something. NO. I didn’t exercise. I just had the–stop asking that. Okay?
  • I’m knitting. (Yep. Really knitting. Not just thinking about it.) Okay, I’m only knitting a bunny for now (I’m planning to make her one of those cute gathered net skirts all the babies are wearing in pictures) but hey. Keeps me out of trouble in the evenings. 🙂

Front half of the bunny and the legs of the back half. Imagine the ears, nose and mouth. Oh, and tail pom-pom. 🙂

Looks like she’s shopping, doesn’t she? “Hm. I kind of like these pants. Wonder if there’s enough tail room.”

That might be another sign of fall–my weird sense of humor.

How about you? What are your inside signs that the seasons are a-changin’?