24 November 2008

Back in my day...

I've been thinking about my Grandma a lot this weekend.  I talked to Marsha for a long time on Saturday, so maybe that's why.  Anyway, yesterday I was thinking about getting the house cleaned and rearranging furniture, etc. to make sure there's plenty of space for everyone on Thanksgiving.  We'll have a full house, and I'm actually really, really excited!  

But what I was thinking was, and I apologize in advance if I'm about to offend you...my generation is just never satisfied.  We all think we need bigger houses, bigger tables, more stuff, better stuff...we think we need it all, and we need it now.  I thought about going to Kansas, and being at Grandma's house.  It was smaller than our last 2 houses, but bigger than this one.  It was a very Kansas layout--very long, with one half the kitchen/living room/dining area and the other half being the three bedrooms and one bathroom.  One bathroom, folks.  But you know, I don't remember, even as an adult, thinking, we won't have enough room, or, what if 2 people need to go to the bathroom at the exact same moment?  We never thought about it, and if she did, I'm not aware of it.  It just WAS.  Grandma's house was Grandma's house--there was always enough food to go around, and when it was time to eat we'd extend the table and gather as many chairs as we could find around the house (remember that, how the chairs were stashed in the bedrooms, just part of the landscape?).  Nobody worried about bringing in another table or buying another table or would the fat...I mean, bigger people be able to fit around the table.  If it was time to eat, we ate.  Then afterward, some would go to the kitchen to clean, some would go rest or visit in the living room (which was the same room as the dining room) and some would stay at the table to visit or play cards or dominoes.  It was always loud, and always fun.  Kids played behind the couch with the red laundry basket of toys that had been passed down from kid to kid, or in the garage, or outside...it was Kansas, we could go outside without our parents in arms' reach.  

Anyway, the point is, nobody cared that it was the same dishes she'd always had, or the same table, or that the chairs got narrower as we got fat...I mean older.  The whole point of Grandma's house was the time we spent together.  Granted, the majority of that time revolved around food, but that's okay--like we said in the cookbook, it's that food that makes our family.  I wish more people could remember (myself included) that it's not about the stuff, it's about people, and time well spent.  

So, I still have to clean my filthy house and buy groceries and cook, and...take time to remember that nobody will notice if my ceiling fans have fuzz around the edges, or if there are a couple of places where we need to touch up paint.  They will remember the day, the food (hey, it's just that good) and that we're blessed to have young and old at the table together as family.  Funny how up until recently, we took just that for granted. 


Mary said...

I read your thoughts about Grandma, and I to have been thinking alot about how we spent holidays when I was younger. I want to show the boys that no matter what we can have traditions. I am so happy that Ronnie is coming home, and I love to read your blog every day. It makes me feel closer to you guys down there. Please tell everyone Happy Thanksgiving. and I cannot wait to see you next summer.
Much Love from your Kansas Cousins
Mary and Boys

Kristi said...

Hey, Mary!
I was thinking today, wish our family would set up blogs so we can all keep up, see a bit of each other's daily lives. Not that my life is all that exciting, but since we haven't been to each other's homes, it's cool to have a glimpse into what our lives are like outside of the reunions. I'd love to see what you and your kids do on a regular day!
Tell your boys hi from the Pharaons, and you guys have fun breaking out your Thanksgiving traditions and talking about back in your day. :) If you ever feel like a road trip, Brenham's a great place to visit! Of course, we'll have to break out the pallets, but we're old pros at that.
:) Kristi