My grandmother was born on this date – January 8, 1919. Which means if she were alive today she would be 96 years old! Longevity is a trait among most of the women on my mother’s side of the family; many of my great-aunts lived well into their 80s and 90s.
I always remember her birthday, as it falls right after the busy-ness of the holiday season when everything has calmed down a bit. Plus, it’s Elvis’ birthday. Not sure if she cared much for him or about sharing a birthday with him, but it’s one way of remembering the date.
I remember other things, too:
* She had an impeccable sense of style and was always in tune with the latest fashions. She would pick out some outfit and say “that’s what they’re all wearing.” Which led me to always ask in my sarcastic teenager manner, “Who are they?”
She totally would have loved every single show on HGTV.
Wish I remembered this photo, but here I am with her. It appears we’re painting her back door. (1974)
* She would have loved my ten year old daughter for both of the reasons stated above.
* Her nails were always long, trim, and polished.
* She liked to stick her head out the dining room window to see what was going on in our driveway below.
* She was thrilled that her fourth and final grandchild’s name started with the letter “M”. Especially given that her first three grandchildren’s names all began with “K” which was very confusing when calling for us, yelling at us, or simply remembering who was who. Whom? (Shout out to my cousin Marc! And my sister Kerri and cousin Kristina)
* She used catch phrases that confused the heck out of me. I recently started saying one of her favorties – “well it’s six of one, half a dozen of the other.” Which causes my girls to stare at me with blank faces. Another classic was when someone asked her what was for dinner. If she was feeling witty she may have replied, “Wind pudding and air sauce.” A throwback to the struggles of the Depression? I have no idea, but that phrase always made me squint a little…
* Her formal dining room chair cushions were covered for the longest time in a pink fabric. My poor grandfather!
I totally love this photo.
* She had crushed, powder-blue velvet love seats in her formal living room and a fake fireplace in the den where she watched Wheel of Fortune and the Price is Right. Ah, the 1980s!
* My sister, my husband and I worked for Disney for many years. My sister still does. Back in 1988 when I first started my Disney career, I worked at the Disney Store at the Burlington Mall in Burlington, Massachusetts. Mickey was making a special visit and cast members and our families were invited for a before-hours meet and greet. Glad my grandmother got to meet Mickey 🙂
* She liked to play Bingo. And that one leads me to my newest memory. I am really happy to have my grandmother’s buffet server and china cabinet from her original set (which I’m told is probably about 70 years old).
It remained there until 2005 when my folks put it in storage.
Now, ten years later, it made the six hour trek in the back of my father’s car to our new home in Delaware.
As my husband was refurbishing the china cabinet – I kid you not – a red Bingo chip fell out.
I’m taking it as a sign that she’s happy the set is being used again.
Thanks Nana, and Happy Birthday.