Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Gramma and Grandmother

Her name was Sylvia, she was my Mother's mother. I called her Gramma. We had a close bond while I was growing up. Many summers were spent with her, and Grampa, in their home in Tennessee.

Her name was Minne, she was my Father's mother. I never knew her. She died before my Father married. All I have are a few memories he shared.

Summers with Gramma always involved activities. She taught me to crochet one summer. That is a love I still have, a love for yarn. With the simple action of passing down a hobby, she started me on a life long love of fiber arts in all their forms.

I never got to know this other Grandmother. I grew up in the house she and my Grandfather finally settled into four years before her passing. Bits of her surrounded me there. Her rocking chair. Her cookbooks and kithchen utensils. I baked my first brownies with a recipe from one of her books.

My Gramma was always there when I needed her. After Grampa's retirement, they moved back to
Indiana. No more ten hour trips to Tennessee, she was practically around the corner. When I became pregnant at twenty-seven, and was looking at single motherhood, she offered which ever form of assistance I wanted. After I assured her I wanted this child, we dug out the crochet patterns for baby clothes. Giggling over the cute outfits we were going to make.

My other Grandmother didn't get the chance to meet her great-granddaughter. But that child also spent much time in the house where my Grandmother spent the end of her life. She baked her first cake from one of the old cookbooks.

My Gramma was full of fun and mischief. I still miss her, she passed away twenty three years ago. Looking back now, I realize how much more I could have learned.

I have moved back into the house that was my Grandmother's home. She left behind much more than a rocking chair and cookbooks. I have her collection of postcards, dated from the early 1900's until her death in 1952. I have books she read. I have letters from her family. I realize now how much more I can learn.

(This post covered two different prompts this week. WriteOnEdge and MamKat's Writers' Workshop.)

This week we asked you to write about a person from your past…but the story had to include YOU.

We gave you the starting point of “His/her name was _______, and looking back now, I realize….”

Mama’s Losin’ It the prompt I chose was to write my grandmother's story. I wrote little snippets of who they were


  1. I really liked your take on this.

  2. These snippets are beautiful. I love the way you worked in both grandmothers and how they contributed to your life alive and from beyond. Beautiful!

  3. I really love how you wrote about both grandmothers, and how your experiences with both of them, even the one you never met, have shaped you and your daughter your whole lives.

    For some reason, something about generations of women passing on traditions just gets me in the gut every. single. time.

  4. Like you, I grew up with one Gramma, and never knew the other. I think you're right, their lives both had lessons to teach, but how I learn them has and will be very different.

  5. You did so great at intertwinning their stories and how you knew and relate(d) to them, then and now, even though they're gone. What a wonderful tribute to your two grandmothers!

  6. Loved the memories of your grandmother and gramma. So special to be able to hold onto the past.... sometimes.

  7. This is a really unique take on this prompt. I really felt your connection to both of your grandmothers even though you only physically met one.

    My Mom's father died before I was born and not getting to know him makes me sad. My Mom tells me stories and she clearly adored him and I feel I missed out.

  8. I only have memories of my Granny (my mom's mother). I never knew either of my grandfather's and my grandmother, I only met her once or twice. My children have both grandmothers, both grandfathers, 2 great-grandmothers, and their great granddad. I am so happy at how blessed they are but it also makes me realize how much I missed growing up.