Here are my grandparents on their wedding day. Just typing that reminds me that I want to ask how they met! I have no idea. My grandpa passed away when I was in the sixth grade. He was a man of very few words. Those who know my dad think he's pretty quiet... all I'm going to say is that you should have met my grandpa.
A few memories I have of him: he would take us for rides on the three-wheeler (quads hadn't been invented yet...I think) to change the HUGE sprinkler on the ranch. He would take Kendra and me and park the thing just close enough that he didn't have to walk too far, but far enough away we thought we were safe from being sprayed. I'm not sure why, but the HUGE sprinkler head was scary to us. Without fail, the thing was always aimed at us when it was turned on. Now that I think of it, I'm positive he did that on purpose. As a kid, I always thought it was just out to get me. A cool deluge of water on a hot day was always nice. But the sprinkler was scary. I can't wait to do that to my kids! I remember him getting up to change the channel on the TV, and dialing the station in just right. He smoked Marlboros. It seemed like he ate a steak and corn for every dinner. I could definitely be wrong on that one... but I think I'm right! I remember one time specifically spending the night with them, and Star Search came on. For some reason the song "Solid as a Rock" (you know.... Solid! Solid as a rock, ock, ock, ock! That's what our lo-ove is! And that's why it's hot-hot-hot-hot-hot!) came on, and I started busting my Solid Gold moves. He didn't say anything. But he did shake his head and then at his earliest convenience turned on the Laurence Welk Show. I remember vaguely the end of his life- he died of cancer. I believe it was a melonoma that then somehow went to his lungs. I always enjoyed going to my grandparents' ranch in Woody, CA. I loved it! I think that's why living where I do now is so enjoyable... I inherited a love of wide open spaces with very few people or amenities.
My grandma is still alive and kicking! (She's not that old.) She has since moved from the ranch into the big city. She misses it, though. She still drives up to Woody to attend church every Sunday. Her church is called "Elberon Christian Church" and is non-denominational. We were talking about the church the other day, and it's come along way since I was there as a kid. It used to have a pot-belly stove, and we'd go early to light it and set up chairs. The kids would be taken into the little kitchen area for Sunday School. It had pit toilets. Now, it's been renovated- it even has flushers! When the church needed a pianist, my grandma started taking lessons. She was in her 60's and always told me that I was lucky to be so young and learning, and to never stop playing. My grandma is the one that taught me that you can cook anything if you can read a recipe. She had us practice reading recipes by allowing us to pick her zucchini and making zucchini bread. I also remember her reading to me at night, specifically the story "The Teeny Tiny Woman." Kendra and I would stay and visit for a week in the summer, every summer growing up. We'd make bread, play with play-doh, swim, and play on the three-wheelers. Good thing we liked the outdoors- we were in heaven!
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