I wanted to do a big blog about last week.  There really was something almost every day!  Monday we helped pack out the kitchen at Raph and Gina’s trailer — so much fun being together, so sad to think about what we were doing.  We had a good time, things went smoothly and the pizza was good for lunch.  The day was hard for all of us, though. 

Tuesday, I had a huge wash because I had let it go an extra day, and then I baked bread and baby sat for my grandbaby.  That’s fun stuff!

Ah, my sweet Charis Darlin’! 
I never knew I would love a grandbaby so much!

Wednesday, I had a doctor appointment for Cecilia which takes more effort than I care to admit, and then had prescriptions to fill.  I spent some of the day calling people to make sure they knew that we were cleaning the church in the evening in preparation for Josh and Lawina’s reception, and then went up to help clean.  Thanks to all of you who helped — a small but mighty crew and we got it done.  Stanley Steemer had come and cleaned the floors and they were absolutely gorgeous!  The trustees and the deacon finally solved and fixed the problem of the leak and the floor has been dry for over a week now, so that is wonderful, too.  The clean basement looked as good as new!  Hard job done, and this old lady was mighty tired.  Certain Man was, too.  We came home and crashed

Thursday morning, Raph and Gina pulled in around ten o’clock.  Their vehicles were packed to the brim, and they were ready to begin the trip to Ohio.  I looked at my tall son and his sweet wife, and thought that this “good-bye” was something I just could not do.  I had written Gina a letter and tucked it into a little red Bible, and had a letter for Raph, too.  We stood in the middle of the kitchen and Certain Man drew us all into a hug and he prayed for us and them and their future and their trip.  His voice was husky with unshed tears.  (There was nothing “unshed” about mine.)  Certain Man checked some things in his pickup that Raph was going to drive to Ohio, and then Gina got into her Jeep and Raph got into his Dad’s pickup and they were off.  I spent the day either in tears or on the verge.  I finally went and did some necessary shopping for the Wedding reception that was coming up on Saturday night, and so the long day passed.

Friday was our annual potato salad day at the house of my Uncle Jesse and Aunt Gladys. 

250 pounds of potatoes!  We make them all into potato salad for the annual festival at Central Christian School.  Potato salad is served with their famous barbecued chicken dinners, and Aunt Gladys’ recipe is famous for being THE BEST!!!  Over the years, we’ve worked at getting the proportions written down until we are able to be a fine running “potato salad making machine”.  And this is the truth!  When about a dozen people can come into a kitchen and take potatoes piled just like this and turn them into 55 gallons of potato salad less than four hours later– Well, I’d call that pretty good.  Uncle Jesse and Aunt Gladys cooked and peeled all the hardboiled eggs in the days just before, and cooked all the potatoes to perfection, and that is a good bit of the job right there.  If the potatoes aren’t cooked right it makes everything a mess!  This year they were as perfect as an old brown cooked potato can be.  We had wonderful help, and things got done.  What a wonderful day.  I didn’t take pictures of the process this time like usual because I left my camera behind and Deborah brought it when things were almost over.  I’m so sorry, because I like to show the pictures of everyone who helped.  Our crew this year was almost the very same as last year with one or two substitutions.  And so, we got by.

One of the highlights of Potato Salad day for me is seeing the quilt that my Aunt Gladys makes for the auction that is sold at the festival.  For years, she has made a quilt that usually brings the highest price and is so beautifully done.

Here it is!  The next day, her grandson, Jared, put the winning bid in and got it for some over $700.00, I believe.  The highest paid for a quilt that day, but still a steal.  I heard that most of the quilts brought under $300.00 that day.  The economy has hit the quilt business hard.   One of these years, I’m going to save up and I’m going to buy one of those quilts.  Of course, she has lots of grandsons (16, I believe and 6 granddaughters) and they are all hard working and determined.  They just might edge me out.  Some of them have already purchased their “grandma quilt” but there is quite a passel left that are still hopeful.  I hope Aunt Gladys can be around to make lots more quilts.  She did every single quilting stitch herself in this one.  Quite a lady, indeed.

After we finished the potato salad, Certain Man (who grated every single one of those potatoes himself with the help of the grater on my KitchenAid Mixer) and I took a gallon of the potato salad in to his office where he promptly “sold” the whole thing for a $20.00 donation.  Then we came home, and I put my feet up for a while.  Then later that evening, my good friend, Emma and I went up to church to decorate for Josh and Lawina’s wedding reception.  Things went well.  I love working with Emma.  She is such a faithful friend and a good, good help for things like this.  We finished up around 8:30 and called it a day.  A sweet, sweet day it was!

Saturday finally dawned, and I had Certain Man bring my big roaster up from the basement.  I had told my sister, Sarah, that I would make burger bean bake for Josh and Lawina’s reception, and had purchased the ingredients earlier in the week.  Certain Man looked at the bacon and hamburger frying and looked like he was debating whether he should say something or not.  He finally did.  “Hon, how much burger bean bake are you going to make?  I hope you aren’t planning to make too much.  So often we have so much left over after things like this and we hardly know what to do with it.”  I knew that what he was saying was true, but lately there have been some situations where gatherings have run out of food, and I really didn’t want that to happen.  I looked at all my cans of different beans and decided to use half of what I had purchased “for starters” and to see how things looked from there.  By the time I had the bacon and hamburger and the extras in using about half of what I had bought was about exactly right.  I stirred and tasted and used my good friend, Ethel Campbell’s recipe in our community’s red cookbook for most of what I put in until I was satisfied. 

 . . .  And I will be back — You can read this far for now.  Eldest Daughter wants to take me to lunch for a belated Mother’s Day treat, and I am going to go!  I have some more pictures, and a few more things to tell you, and then this past week will be documented, and it will be time to go on to other things.

Until then —

Mary Ann signing off


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7 responses to “

  1. enjoyed your recordings of the week !  looking forward to part 2

  2. Oh Mary that first picture of Charis and you!!!! You looks so much alike! Both your beautiful smiles with dimpled corners are exactly alike. I love Aunt Gladys quilt. Simply stunning!I’m amazed at how much you pack into one week. You bless so many people and I’m praying God will bless you in a super special way. Love you, ~Polly~

  3. Oh, I know how hard it is to pack up those young ‘uns. Last summer I moped around here for a couple weeks, but life goes on. I still miss my girls so much. Blessings to you as you adjust.

  4. How sweet is that grandbaby!!!  I can verify that your heart is so full of love for her.  I know the feeling. What a bitter sweet day to send off your son and wife.  I know that feeling, too. You are amazing all that you do, BEG!  How are those knees? Still getting better? I WANT that feeling.

  5. wow….you never cease to amaze me what you allow God to do thru your physical efforts, kindness, prayers, and well wishes.  Of all the joyful, productive, blessed days you had, smiles would come, but the moving day, couldn’t help it…….I had to cry too!!!

  6. I am exhausted after reading this, but happy.

  7. I enjoy reading your Xanga, and I’m adding you as a friend if that’s OK (:

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