A Peep at My Sweet Tooth

One of the earliest memories I have is going with Granny to the nursing home to visit her father, Pa.  We never stayed long, just a few minutes (probably because she had a little rugrat in tow!)–just long enough to say hi, ask how Pa was doing and hand over a bag of candy.

My great-grandfather, you see, had a sweet tooth–and not just one either!  He could easily eat a large bag of candy in one sitting.  In order to make the candy last longer than 2 hours, Granny would give the bag of candy to the nurses and asked them to ration it out so the bag would last all week.  Of course, Pa was having none of that: once his daily ration was consumed, he would then start raiding candy stashes of everyone in the nursing home.  Apparently, Pa was quite the candy thief.

It is, therefore, little surprise that his great-granddaughter inherited his sweet tooth.  I’m not a big candy fan–I mean, don’t get me wrong, I like candy and will happily indulge–but I much rather prefer cake and ice cream and pudding and pie and cheesecake and cream puffs and…well, you get the picture: things made with love–not in a production line (although, yes, I will concede everything I listed can be made in a production line).

EXCEPT one thing.  It’s completely irrational and totally disgusting and why, why, why I love them I’ll never know, but I do.

Peeps.

Yes, marshmallows dipped in sugar.  I’m not proud, but there you go.  Take a minute to make that face.  Yes, that face–you know that scrunched-up-I-can’t-believe-I’m-actually-hearing-this face you make it whenever you come across the rare individual that actually admits to liking Peeps.  You know, the same one you make when you hear that someone likes Vegemite. The BFF tries her best to indulge my predilection for Peeps (she will NOT under any circumstances acknowledge my voracity for Vegemite, except to say that I’m gross!).  She tries to get me Peeps for every holiday where they make an appearance (which, anymore is ALL OF THEM), such as for example:

HALLOWEEN!

HALLOWEEN!

And in case you’re wondering, NO, I did not eat the entire package in one sitting, much to Pa’s dismay.

Love You. Granny.

There are a lot of types of love in the world.  All of them special in their own way, but nothing–NOTHING–is better than the love you get from your grandparents.  I feel love from my parents, but it is nothing compared to the love that I see them display with my nieces.  It’s more than just love–it’s unconditional adoration. 

I am a very lucky person in that I had both of my grandmothers for 39 years; more impressive is that they both lived nearly 94 years and were both healthy until about a year ago. I see so much of myself in both of them, and for that I am so very thankful.  Perhaps I’m just lucky to have such amazing grandparents, but I don’t think that’s quite it either–I knew a lot of my friends’ grandparents and they were pretty darn special too (Grandpa & Grandma and Nanny, I’m looking at you!!!)

Just over a week ago, I lost my Granny.  She was truly the most amazing person I know (that’s not a dis on anyone else in my life, btw, my Granny was just that amazing).  She always had a smile, something sweet for you to eat, and always, always ended every conversation with “love you.”  She taught me how to bake and impressed upon me that the most important ingredient for baking is love.  She made awesome pies, kept in her freezer no less than six different types of cookies (every grandchild’s favorite), her cream puffs were divine, and her bread, well, if I close me eyes and concentrate, I can almost smell the daily loaf of bread baking in the oven.  But it was her smile that was the most amazing.  It was warm and it was always genuine. 

A few hours before her 94th birthday, the nursing home called to say that she was struggling to breathe and that perhaps someone wanted to come sit with her.  I can never thank them enough.  Momma, Teresa, and I held her hands, told her we loved her, said a few prayers, and let big, fat tears roll down our faces as she slipped quietly away from us.  It was truly the most beautifully heartbreaking moment I have ever experienced. 

But Granny wouldn’t want us to mourn.  Oh no, she was too practical for that.  She had a very long and very good life.  It wasn’t always sunshine and roses, but I believe that she made the best of it and all the while made everyone feel like they were her favorite…but of course, we all know it was really me 😉

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