IMG_2261I  saw this picture of Cher taken at a Clinton rally the other day and it has me  wondering: When did she start looking like an Italian grandmother circe 1930?

It must be the ruffles at the wrist. If you’re getting up there in age and your relatives don’t strictly forbid it, the undertakers will try dressing you in ruffles for your viewing; this I have noted at more than one wake.

Though I don’t look at all like Cher with my thin lips and map-of-Ireland face, I definitely do feel like a grandma on this family vacation anyway, which is to say:

I’m doing a LOT of laundry.

In fact it feels like that’s all I’m doing.

I have learned this week if I had forgotten it, that kids shed clothes like a snake sheds skin. One of these grandchildren of mine yesterday had so many clothes strewn about his sleeping area  that there was no telling which ones were clean and which were dirty.

So, I washed them all.

Another, the first one’s younger brother, seemingly had no dirty clothes at all, since, as I just this morning realized, he has been wearing basically the same clothes since he arrived last Saturday.

The third grandchild, their four-year-old sister,wears long tea-length early-20th century ‘frocks’ pretty much exclusively , which I find myself not only washing but also  ironing God help me. Still, she looks very nice in them, even when she wore one to climb Rattlesnake the day before yesterday with her doll.


Her mom’s job that day was to forge the path up and up and up the hill. The job of her dad, now called “papa,” was to keep things moving in the middle portions of the line of march. My job, I was told, was  to be last.

As it happens, I did an excellent job at being last but I have to say: the Grandma who does all the wash and can be counted on to go slow is not exactly the Grandma I had hoped to be. I liked it much better last summer when I was the Grandma who took the kids and bought the kind of stuff that was instantly condemned by their parents and summarily confiscated.


At least that job had some fun to it.

But I’m not complaining, not really. It’s kind of nice being one of the old ones, the  ones who are definitely NOT in charge of much of anything even though this is still our house. Just please, if any of you are around when I finally kick the bucket, put me in tattered workout clothes like these before those undertakers begin coming at me with the ruffles.  🙂




4 thoughts on “Grandma

  1. The hell with a clothed body lying in a casket. Neither is cremation acceptable because it pollutes the air badly. An alternative called “Promission” freezes the body in liquid nitrogen and vibrates it at a low frequency to dehydrate the body particles which are then placed in a biodegradable box and buried underground. Voila – no pollution, no ruffles.

    1. Loved your story, Terry and can identify except that my grandchildren (and 14 greats) live so far away, I never get to see them. For Gwen – I didn’t know that cremation pollutes the air – I’d told my son to take my ashes and plant them in the soil of a newly growing tree freshening the air and providing shelter and nest space for the birds. I told him if he gets a red maple and the leaves turn bright red in Oct. he will think, “Uh oh, Mom’s mad about something.” He wants his ashes in a container attached to a coral reef in the ocean. So I have 4 plots, part of one holds my first grandchild, but not sure who will get them if my son and I don’t use the plots which were a gift to me some years ago. Still love you, Terry, after all these years!

  2. you’re a great grandma! jeff’s grandmother bought his dad a 60 lb pull straight bow when he was quite young… and then she passed it onto jeff when he was old enough. (10 to be exact) his words to me regarding this…”it was a very different time, nik” :0) one of his fondest memories.

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