Sunday, August 7, 2016


My kids live in Spokane, Washington, so I don’t get to see them that often, or my grandkids either, so when I went up there for my granddaughter Alyssa’s graduation, it was a big deal for me. When I go I stay with each of my kids for a while, which is great, except for the grandchild who has to give up his or her bed for me to sleep in. Each visit is precious for me, and memorable, but one thing in particular touched me while I was staying with my son Donald, my daughter-in-law Tina, and my grandkids, Ciara, Lauren, Zach, Sophia, and Cody. Zachary’s the one who had to give up his bed. Thanks, Zach.

Anyway Donald’s a lawyer. He’s much better in every way than I am, but he does have one thing in common with me at his age.  He’s really busy. He gets up at the crack of dawn, and often works late and on weekends. In spite of this, he still manages to spend quality time with his family. When he’s there, he’s really there, hearing about the latest accomplishment or disappointment; playing games; helping Tina cook or clean up; running errands; organizing work details to get stuff done, and he fixes oatmeal for breakfast.

That’s what got to me. My mother used to fix oatmeal for breakfast. I can still remember the warmth and smell of it as I would stand on a stool by the stove, stirring it so it wouldn’t stick to the pan. Donald asked me to stir his oatmeal too. Well, anyway, to me oatmeal means love.

Thinking about oatmeal and love and old memories, reminded me of a letter my Grandmother wrote to me when I was four.

Dear Robin,
I received your Letter. & read every word that you wrote. When I got home it was past three in the morning, and I went out to see Spot. He came to the fence to look at me. Neither one of us spoke. Then I came in to see if I could find anything for him to eat & there wasn’t one scrap of anything so I cooked him some oat meal & took that to him & then when I came in he cried, so I brought him in & let him sleep in the rocking chair. I have a lot of flowers blooming & my place looks pretty. I took dinner with Phillip Sunday & I told him that you were coming to play with him. & he is looking forward to you coming. You write again soon.
Lodes & lodes of love. Grandmother

Spot was Grandmother’s dog, and Phillip was my cousin. She loved her dogs and her grandchildren. 

Grandmother and Spot