In Memoriam

Today’s post takes a short departure from anxiety, but I hope you still receive it warmly.

Last night the Oscars showcased the best in movies around the world. I LOVE the Oscars and look forward to it every year. Seriously, my favorite part is watching all the fashion come down the red carpet and trying to decide who is gonna be on the Best and Worst dressed list. Correctly predicting this has become a bit of a hidden talent for me. No kidding, in 2007 I correctly placed Jennifer Hudson’s Oscar de la Renta dress in the ‘worst’ category. Although you can argue that fashion is subjective and that same dress could end up on a ‘best’ list depending on the opinion of whatever fashion pundit you subscribe to.

In 2008, the Oscars changed forever for me. During that broadcast I was in my apartment with popcorn, watching all the glitz and glamor when the phone rang. It was my dad, calling to tell me that my Grandma B had died. Nothing can prepare you for that call, especially after just seeing her a few months back and she seemed fine. Yes, she had a series of strokes the last year of her life, but seemed to bounce back fairly quickly. I realize now I may have been in denial.  Grandma B was like another parent to me. Someone so much a part of my life that I couldn’t even fathom suddenly having her gone from it.

My grandma B was awesome. We called her grandma B because her last name was hard to say when we were kids, so she and my grandpa kindly shortened it. She was heavily invested in all her grandchildren. So much so that we each had one week carved out over the summer to visit her and grandpa to spend one on one time together. During this week, we were able to do whatever interested us. For me it was movies, eating in front of the tv (you couldn’t do that at home), crafts and playing cards. And eating bologna. She ALWAYS had bologna in the refrigerator (Oh wow! My mouth just filled up with saliva just thinking about a good ‘ol fried bologna sandwich -Yum!). 

Tomorrow will mark 7 years since my grandma’s death. I’ve often been sad that she has missed out on important milestones in our lives. In those years she has missed seeing the birth of several great-grandchildren, as well as a few weddings of grandchildren; including my own.

But I have a secret. I believe that my grandmother was there for all those events. Soon after I was married, I had a dream. In this dream I somehow had the phone number to heaven and was able to contact my grandma. We talked about all the new things in my life, including my husband. She then told me she knew about him and was proud of us. It was the most gloriously satisfying dream I’ve ever had.

In honor of my grandma B, and taking a page from my cousin’s blog, (that you can find here www.hashtagsareforfootballfields.wordpress.com ) here is a recipe that she frequently used*:

DRIED BEEF GRAVY (Serves 4)

1/4 lb. dried beef

2 TBSP butter

3 TBSP flour

3 cups milk

Directions:

Melt butter in skillet

Tear the dried beef into small pieces & stir into the butter.

Brown meat lightly.

Stir in flour.

When flour is dissolved into butter, add milk, stirring constantly.

Cook over low heat until the mixture thickens. Serve immediately over biscuits or regular toast

**This recipe I actually found at http://www.food.com/recipe/amish-mennonite-dried-beef-gravy-mmmmmmmm-47844 since I was unable to find the cookbook I have of her recipe but as far as I can remember, they are identical. 

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