Saturday, March 12, 2011
Brian’s Granny is 92 years old. I call her Brian’s because he was born in her family, but if she heard me refer to her as his, she’d be mad at me. She considers me hers as much as those who share her blood. Up until the last 6 months, she could run circles around most of us. She has started to slow down a bit, but is still more active than many adults.
Granny lives on the family farm. One of her daughters and grandsons also have houses there, but she lives in her own house, drives her own car, does her own cooking and even mows her own yard (on the riding mower). She takes all of her dishes out of the cabinets every spring and washes them. She cleans all of her windows—inside and out—a couple of times a year (although last year, one of Brian’s cousins came and did it for her).
When Granny turned 85, we had a big party in her church hall. There was a polka band, sand on the floor and even some kegs of beer. Hope was @18 months old and danced as much as Granny (which was a LOT). That party is one of my favorite memories of her.
For her 91st birthday, we all went to Brian’s cousin’s house in Tulsa. The kids swam and ate and we had a great time. One of my favorite pictures of her is the one at the top of this page--right before she opened her presents—with all the grandkids surrounding her in their swim suits.
Granny’s parents emigrated from Poland. She and Brian’s Grandpa John bought the farm from them and built her current house. She tells stories of sitting in the kitchen and using the oven door as a table while she sat in their only chair and Grandpa John sat on a milk crate. I never met Grandpa John—he died when Brian was @Hope’s age. I’m told Brian is a lot like him.
Up until @ 5 years ago, Granny used to go polka dancing every Saturday night. She even had a couple of outfits—complete with the petticoats under the brightly colored skirts. When she would come to Dallas, she always liked going to Kubys, a German restaurant, where they had live polka music and sauerkraut and sausage.
Granny makes the best fried chicken in the world. Even Babe’s can’t compare—seriously. She eats half a banana every morning and always has cookies from Braums for us when we arrive. Then she takes us to The Country Boy and we grocery shop (which means she buys all kinds of things for the girls to eat). We usually have a roast while we are there and she always orders pizza for the kids. On Thanksgiving, she gets up at 3am to put in her turkey—which is always HUGE and done way before time for us to eat.
She doesn’t have any pets right now, but has had an assortment of cats over the years that help to keep the mice out of the barn. She pretends she could care less for all the other pets at the farm, but she’s been known to sneak goodies to all of them and pet them when we’re not looking. Our dogs have always been welcome to come with us when we visit, but the last couple of years, our big dogs have become a bit too much for her, so they don’t get to visit the farm with us anymore.
She is constantly trying to buy me things for our house and was thrilled when, after 2 years of bugging me, I found a comforter that I liked. She has also bought us a dishwasher and curtains for Hope’s room. She loves to buy us things that make our home pretty.
My girls absolutely adore her and she feels the same about them. She thinks they can do no wrong and doesn’t care if they are loud or messy in her house. She laughed with delight when they spoke Polish to her at Christmas (their Mimi—Brian’s mom, Granny’s daughter—taught them to say a couple of phrases). She also has a soft spot for Brian--they have an incredibly special connection.
Granny is one of our favorite people. This blog is not long enough to tell all the stories about her, but I wanted to leave just a few of the things we love about her. Two years ago, she had a pretty serious diagnosis and we were told we could have 2 weeks with her or 2 years. I remember praying that we would have at least one more time with her that summer. God has blessed us and we’ve had several chances to see her and be with her at the farm since that time. I am praying that we have several more--we love that spunky lady.