Posted in childhood, family, life

Smooth Sailing

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My grandparent’s house had three doors.

A proper front and back door and an extra secret door that opened out from the kitchen.
That was my favorite.
Next to my grandmother’s sewing machine. It opened onto the carport. Where the Buick was parked.
We visited my grandparents every year. Always at Christmas and sometimes summertime.
Nothing short of a miracle that Santa knew where to find us. That far from home.
The long road south.

I loved their house.
Every room had a theme. A meaning.
Baum.
That was my grandmother’s maiden name.
Her family owned a bakery and their family came from Germany before that.
My grandmother was sturdy.
She was a great cook and baker. She sewed. She was very good at the important things which included being a grandmother.
She was no nonsense.

My grandmother was a smart lady.
She took a nap in the afternoon and we were instructed not to roller skate or skateboard past her bedroom window while she was sleeping.
I believe she slept for exactly 1 hour and then got up ready for the remaining 25% of her day.
She cooked gumbo. I’m sure I learned the word roux in her kitchen.
There were metal tins of divinity fudge even in the summertime. So sweet you could only eat one piece. Any more than that might require medical attention.
It was in this space where my grandmother would make salt dough for my sister and me. And cousins.
We used it like clay and it was great fun to be in the kitchen when she was.
If you were to hand an eight year old salt dough tomorrow and expect them to entertain themselves it might not go over well.
Or it might. You just never know.

Holidays required a kids’ table. In the kitchen.
We drank milk from colored metal tumblers.
Anodized.
Grownups occupied the dining room with better dishes and clinking noises and important conversations.
The grownups did not drink milk.

My grandparent’s house had sliding doors.
Sliding doors are wonderful when you are a kid. Like a James Bond movie. Or Star Trek.
Nothing says I’m finished with you like sliding a door shut. Slide versus slam. It makes quite a statement.
Like built in shelves. Their house had those too. Floor to ceiling in the den.
With a space in the middle for a giant TV. Huge.
Everything was bigger back then.

My grandparent’s house was near the end of a street. A cul-de-sac. You could roller skate in a circle and not worry about cars. Smooth sailing. This was quite a luxury. It was paved.
Back home our road was gravel. You can try your best but a gravel road is just not as fun.
Ask any kid.

4 thoughts on “Smooth Sailing

  1. Marla, I LOVE your writing!!! You are a very talented and gifted writer. Many of your memories are mine as well, and you help to release them. I look forward to your thoughts every week!
    I think Troy will especially love this writing. Please continue to write, you just make my day when I read your newest blog!
    (I think not so secretly, I’m hoping you’ll write about me from your past memories.)

    I love you, and miss you,
    Jan

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Well, hello, Marla Sue! Didn’t know you had a blog! Welcome to blogging. 😀
    And when you’ve written these on FB, I thought, well dang…she needs to compile these into blog stories! Haha. And here you are! Congrats! And I’ll “share” for you. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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