Spoiled. Totally spoiled.

I was spoiled. Totally. Hope my cousins never see my blog. I was an only child, and my grandmother’s baby. Easter time? I didn’t just get one big basket. I got 3. Christmas stockings? At least 2 from gran. Full to the brim. As a child at least, I only got 1 as an adult. Yes, I was spoiled.

You have to understand, under Gran’s tree (often ceramic and beautiful) the table overflowed with presents. New bf/gf, they got a present. Husbands/wives yep, they got presents. Packages were often super decorative. Fancy bows often with treats attached: little bags of chocolate coins, a small toy. We usually combined with my aunt’s family for Christmas, which meant 3 girls all around the same age. When we opened packages together, no one was different. If one girl got a doll from grandma, we all got one. Different styles, but still the same. Share and share alike. But that was only the story when we were actually “together”.
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Cold Feet, Warm Tortillas

Gran’s place always somehow seemed magical. From the circle of flowers to the faded yellow porch with the maca to rock on. I know now that it was an old, worn-down house, on an old-run down farm. Now it’s condos and tract homes. But I still remember where my tree house stood, where the lamb’s pen and the tire swing were. I still remember cold feet in the mornings and the taste of warm tortillas.

No two rooms were done the same, any carpet was threadbare; the linoleum old and worn, wood floors painted bright aqua, thick in spots where previous paint wasn’t sanded off. Gran kept her slippers beside her bed and never put her bare feet on the floor, but I was young. Old enough to do what I wanted, young enough to not care about the cold.
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Reflecting on Giving Thanks

It’s 2 am, I’ve been awake (again) and getting stuff ready for the last 3 hours. Watched 2 episodes of Numb3rs, tore apart 5 loaves of bread, cut up 3 sweet potatoes and 3 apples, and one bunch of celery, got one dish in the oven cooking for tomorrow. Scratch that, for today. Planned menu: Shepherd’s Pie, Savory Apple-Sweet Potato Bake, Green Beans Almondine, Mixed Vegetables in Cheese Sauce, Gran’s dressing, Martinelli’s Apple Cider, and Pumpkin Pie for dessert. (I’ll put some recipes on the site somewhere) Planned guests: me and Alena. Kaitie may show up, not going to count on it. If she does, we’ll have Cranberry Surprise – her recipe.
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Te Amo Abuelita

gran-kissing-alena So much I would like to say, so much I really can’t figure out how to say. This is a hard post to write. Doesn’t seem like it’s possible that a year has already gone by. We keep finding pieces of you in our world: stickers, letters, cards, handwritten recipes, blankets made, memories. I know that you were not happy in this world anymore. Losing mom broke your heart, I firmly believe that.  I wish you had been able to see the baby as she is now. You would have loved her.
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Poem Found

Found this poem when I was looking through some old textbooks for writing prompts (a new idea I have). I’d say it was written around 3 years ago. Right after my mom passed away. It’s not exactly true to my life, except for the feelings it captured.

Not Last, But First
The roaring and babbling echoes
brought the tears.
I was shattered to feel such pain.
So unexpected.

My mind had known there were many
last moments
that would render me
inconsolable with grief.

The last kiss,
the last reaching out
to touch a frail hand.
The last whisper of breath
past beloved lips.

But I had not thought
then
of all the firsts.

The first basketball game
With one less voice
to cheer me on.
The first good grade when my steps
faltered suddenly
in the run to share good news.

The first rose to bloom
with one less hand
to tend it.

I had known
I would miss you.
That the lasts
would bring sorrow.
But I’d forgotten
about all the firsts.

Since I wrote this poem I’ve dealt with many firsts, and more lasts. With my mother gone, my grandmother’s heart broke and we lost her last year. My daughter lost a baby born to soon. I’ve dealt with an empty nest, full of firsts done alone. And back to more firsts with a new baby that make me miss mom and gran more. This poem still fits. Unedited. Off the cuff. The lasts are hard, but the firsts still bring tears to my eyes.
Note: This was probably more like 5 years ago. Before we lost my mom. The first loss I faced was my grandfather, when I was 10 or so. I used to love running to him to share my day.