In Grandma’s Words part 13 (FGK-75)

One of my most valued artifacts in this house is a buckskin jacket with beadwork sewn on it. I was told that years ago (waaaay before my time) one of the ladies on the reserve who Grandma was friends with wanted to go to a fancy function but she didn’t have a gown that was appropriate for it. Grandma gave her one of hers so that the woman would be able to go, and never thought much of it again. A while later the buckskin jacket was gifted to Grandma as a thank you for the gift of the gown, and the beads that were hand sewn onto it were taken off of said gown. I look at it daily and it serves me as a reminder of how important it is to live life with an open heart, to give freely, and to receive with gratitude. Again, I try to be sensitive to the words that are used. Grandma only every spoke respectfully of our Indigenous neighbours to the west of us, and so I stayed true to the words written because it was what was used at the time.

The jacket
The beadwork

Grandma’s Cheese Straw recipe! My kids grew up eating cheese straws, and they are one of my fondest memories of snack munching as a kid. I agree with her sentiment that it’s a very precious recipe.

All through the years we felt a close tie between us and our neighbours the Indians at Morley. We would contract fencing jobs to them all summer. In the fall they would often help us harvest. And later in November would often ride with the men to help round up stray cattle. I loved our Indian friends and felt I could always trust them. We looked forward to the First of July when they held their annual Stampede in the beautiful natural setting where they had built their corrals. What a magnificent picture to view. We would park our car on the hillside looking down into the corrals, and beyond them the big circle of teepees and tents and their children, cats, and dogs. And back of it all those Gissing blue foothills leading up to the Rockies. Where on earth could you find more beauty and activity? I always felt well entertained. My chickens were just nice fryers by July 1st and I always fried about four or five and along with a salad, cake, and sandwiches that would do us for the day.

My Harry Jacques, the jeweller from Calgary used to have a contest with a prize for the best dressed Indian baby. He very often asked me to be a judge and I wanted so badly to give first prize to everyone there, they were so cute and the beadwork on the buckskin was beautiful. Our kids just loved the first of July and the Morley Stampede.

We always tried to get to Banff or Vermillion crossing for a few days holiday and fishing just before haying. Once we went to Everett, Wash, USA and dug clams just as Percy did when he lived at the coast as a boy.

Family fun time
Family picnic at the ranch
As you can see from the caption “slave labour”. The running joke is that the CL on the brand stands for “Continuous Labour”.

To Grandmother’s house we go

We don’t have water at our house right now, which is one of the side effects of living in an old house in the country (still wouldn’t trade it for anything, I love our home). Fortunately, what we do have is a hero in cowboy boots in the form of my cousin’s husband who has been working hard the last 2 days (in -15 to -20C temperatures) to rectify the situation. It all falls under that Life is an adventure thing. 

Because I don’t do well without showering (and OMG the smell of teens and tweens), we headed into Grandmas for a visit and a shower. She has an endless hot water tank so it was pretty sweet. 

Speaking of sweet, when I got out of the shower I walked into a baking extravaganza in the kitchen. Jenna was rolling and shaping shortbread 

On the side of the baking sheet is Mary, Joseph, and Baby Jesus. 

  Jacob walked right over to the fresh bread and made a grilled cheese. As he does whenever he’s in to see grandma.   
Not to be left out, he then jumped in and made gingerbread cookies. 

There’s something so special about the relationship kids have with grandparents. I have such fond memories of fun times with my Grandma, I am so happy they get to build memories of their own with their grandmas. I’m extra grateful they were able to make memories with my dad, they’ll cherish those forever as well. 

My happiness moment; hearing my son say life is good as he rolls out gingerbread while his sister hovers behind waiting her turn.  

Grandparents rock!