As a kid Sundays meant getting up, excitedly, going to my maternal grandparents for Sunday lunch. It also meant me making the mashed potatoes and sweet tea (my appointed tasks as I got older), and licking the cake bowl, can't waste that yumminess!
Let me tell you that grandma, Elsie, not only was she older, she was in her 80s when I was a young child, in my 10-12 years of age, she was an AMAAAAAAAAZING cook, baker and canning queen! Besides on Sundays, I LOVED hanging out with my grandparents. Grandpa and I spent lots of time in his garden, he carried a pocket knife in his pocket and I remember snacking on turnips, cucumbers, tomatoes off the vine! I also adored his stories, oh those precious stories. Us kids loved eating off their peach tree, the pear tree had some of the best pears in town! Grandma and I were in the kitchen, I watched with great intent as she baked and cooked. I get my love for cooking and baking from her, this I know!
So, back to Sundays! I was there early in the kitchen, eating breakfast with them, fried eggs, toast were the norm, although on special days grandma would make chocolate gravy and biscuits. HOMEMADE, everything!!!! Oh how I MISS her cooking, their company. Grandpa would tell stories of the family, times growing up, living in California and what it was like going through the Great Depression, getting around before cars, working old farms and old living.
My Aunt who lived behind them would come in around 1030 or so to help grandma, not that she needed it but that's just what we did. My sister hid out in her room, of course I was always bugging her, cause that's what little sisters do best! Then my other aunt and her family of 6 would arrive, at this point there are about 15 people there, and this was normal. Let me point out a few things, grandma cooked on a 4 burner cook top for us, a few things, the food was ALWAYS HOT, and there were ALWAYS leftovers. 20 could show up, or 15 and there would be leftovers. A table FULL of food, then half a table of desserts. How on earth she managed it, I don't know but I saw it Sunday after Sunday. Oh the Holidays were RAMPED up and even more food and more people wandering in and out all day! Football on the TV, kids in the kitchen at the kids table, the adults in the dining room at the adult table. Grandma and grandpa sat in their respective seats in the living room and had theirs.
There were never two nicer, nor two people, aside from my father, that I miss more on this earth, than these two beautiful souls and the tradition of Sunday lunches at their house. They have left me some of the BEST memories of my childhood, they inspire me daily as I continue on this journey to bringing others pasts to their present.
Grandpa John and Grandma Elsie Smedley - You are missed and loved!
I hope your family has left you with fond memories and traditions.