Trim that ugly tree with tradition

“I miss Mia,” Jenny confided to me the other night. “I was just thinking about her crazy Christmas trees.” My sister and I had a good laugh over that one, and we decided to file it into another of those “Mia stories” categories that just have to be shared with you. So, in the spirit…

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Update on my grandmother in the hospital

My grandmother is 93 years old and she’s one of the healthiest people I know. She’s always been very active, even mowing her own grass on her 1-acre property up until recently. She spends her days gardening and weeding and generally doing anything she can to be outdoors. Time spent at her house as a…

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Drunk and pregnant

My grandmother – we called her Grandmama – was very poised and proper. She was the only adult I knew that would sleep until 10 a.m. (I must take after her), then stroll out of her bedroom in her silk nightgown, her hair done, and enjoy her cup of coffee in an actual teacup and…

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On loud, politically incorrect grandmothers

I may have mentioned before that my 92-year-old grandmother, Mia, says whatever is on her mind, PC or not. She is also slightly hard of hearing, and she sometimes says things more loudly than I believe she intends to. All that was said to set the scene for yesterday’s conversation with her, while we waited for…

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Getting drunk after Grandma’s funeral and other life lessons

Lessons I have learned in my lifetime (thus far): – Sometimes “bite me” is the best response. – If you don’t have anything nice to say, sometimes that’s the best time to talk. – Kisses are not contracts and presents are not promises (read that in a poem in high school; it stuck.) – What…

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Lessons from Grandma: Speak your mind, live how you want, and don’t let time slip away

The first time I ever met Jeff’s grandmother was in April of 2000. Jeff’s sister, Colleen, his stepdad, Gray, and I drove from N.C. to Florida for his brother, young Gray’s, high school graduation. We arrived at Grandma Kochel’s house late – probably 9 or 10 p.m. I walked into Grandma’s house for the first…

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