While I was in Utah I got to stay at my Grandma N's house, the sweetest little brick house you'll find in Logan. She's lived there for 38 years now, and hardly leaves it, so my memories of her and interconnected with her house. Inside it's neat as a pin, full of gew-gaws, but not too full and not too precious. There is a grandmotherly fondness for silk flowers and ceramic figurines, but a tastefully classic selection of furniture. The requisite little white picket fence surrounds the backyard of soft green grass lined with rose bushes.
Despite the fact that my cousins almost convinced me that Dracula lived in Grandma's circuit breaker box in the basement, in this house I feel as if nothing could ever go wrong. There is such a feeling of peace and security that I get when I'm in it. It's the kind of feeling I imagine heaven is full of. And in heaven, like at my Grandma's house, you probably get all the hotcakes you can eat. She did her best to stuff me each day I was there, setting the breakfast table with a five course meal of hotcakes, milk and cereal, fresh fruit, canned fruit, and toast, washed down with hot chocolate and chased by the maple bars my mom would bring over fresh from Macey's. Grandma was very concerned with making sure we were well-fed. On our last day in town, we decided to go to the park a few blocks down the street so my nieces and nephew could play on the playground. Grandma insisted she was too tired to go, and we left her settled on the couch watching a soap opera. However, about an hour later, my sister spotted Grandma wandering through the park looking for us, carrying a gigantic bowl of freshly popped popcorn! "I just thought you needed some popcorn," she said as she deposited it with us, and then went back home.
My mom insists that it was difficult being raised by Grandma, because she was so strict. In fact, at one point she did tell me that my knee-length dress was too short and made me change my clothes, and she wouldn't let K knit in church. Also, she would start talking to me sometimes when I was all the way at the other end of the house, expecting me to hear her perfectly and answer back, and then accuse me of being deaf when I had to keep saying, "What?" And she told my mom that she needed to gain weight to fill out her wrinkles! But I love my Grandma. She's hilarious without realizing it, prickly but sweet at the same time, and I know she loves her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren with all her heart. Hopefully it won't be another eight years before I see her again.