Today’s Word from Deacon Amy…
I made a cherry pie today, and told my daughters that my grandma would be rolling in her grave. Grandma Lois never would have used a store-bought crust or canned cherries. The joke in our family is that Grandma would have started by planting the cherry tree. Everything she ever made was from scratch. I did, however, beautifully flute the edges of my pie crust – Grandma would be proud of that. Better yet, she would have been overjoyed to see my daughters in the kitchen with me.
I think one of her happiest places was in the kitchen, but really, she was happy anywhere that she was with people who she loved. And there was no shortness of people that she loved. In fact, I think the only person Grandma Lois didn’t like was Jack Nicholson – after watching a few of his movies, she was convinced that he was evil.
When she was working as an office manager, countless young coworkers called her “Mom.” Several of my friends called her “Grandma.” That’s just who she was. There was something special about Grandma Lois. She was easy to love.
Grandma was raised in Big Creek, Idaho, just outside of Kellogg. Her dad and brother worked in the Sunshine Silver Mine. To say that they were poor is an understatement. I remember Grandma telling me about the time that her mom made her re-peel the potato peels, because she’d cut them too thick and was wasting food. But to hear her tell it, she was never lacking for anything. She would happily recount how lucky she was to share a bed with her sister, and to be able to see the stars through the gaps in the roof over their heads. Grandma had a way of seeing the silver lining in every situation.
Although she wasn’t raised in a Christian household, Grandma had the most amazing faith. Her husband and in-laws introduced her to God and the Lutheran church. She shared the love of Jesus openly with everyone that she met – she was generous and caring. Always.
Spending time with Grandma was always a special occasion. Homemade toast and hot cocoa made on the stove, or homemade milkshakes were always a treat. When I would spend the night, she would go in early and put a heating pad between the sheets, so my feet wouldn’t be cold when I climbed into bed. She always had a way of making me feel special.
The holidays always make me think of Grandma Lois with a smile. She loved any opportunity to gather her family together. Her children and grandchildren would come together for a day full of meaningful connection, and food. There was always plenty of food.
I miss Grandma Lois on holidays, but I am happy to have so many wonderful memories of her. I hope you have had the opportunity to know the love of a Grandma Lois in your life, or perhaps you have the chance to be that special person for someone else.