Bittersweet

 JWP

In many ways it was your typically busy weekend. We had soccer, a birthday party, loads of laundry, grocery shopping, etc. But in the middle of all this normal stuff, we worked on getting my grandma’s house ready to sell as well. It’s something I haven’t discussed here, but recently my darling grandma moved into an assisted living facility. It is not an easy transition no matter when or how it happens, of course, and somehow working on the house brought it really close to home. I spent most of the day trying not to think about the bigger picture and overall, I fancy I did a pretty good job of just getting it done.

I worked on many parts of the house: the laundry room, the toy closet, my grandpa’s study, my grandparents’ bedroom. Obvious trash was thrown away but everything else was saved. An estate sale is going to happen after the house sells and mainly we had to get the personal stuff out of there. 90 years of personal stuff. I’m sure you can imagine the breadth of a long life full of “personal stuff.”

It was a bittersweet kind of day. I tried to focus on the sweet. We did find some great old photo that I hadn’t seen before. One is my grandpa, looking totally Mad Men, hanging out at his desk with a set of plans. I’m keen to use it on our company’s new website. There were also some cool fedoras, custom from the era, with my grandpa’s initials stamped inside them. Perhaps he was wearing one of them in the Mad Men photo.

sewingnotions

I found a couple of souvenirs too. My grandma’s sewing area had about a million old spools of thread, wooden ones. I had to have just a couple. There was also this hilariously cute “Happy Home” needle book.

churchcookbookThere were also about 10 copies of this church cookbook. Judging by the clues that I can interpret, I’m guessing it was published in the early to mid 1960s. It’s filled with typical church cookbook type recipes, but my favorite part of it is the bit on the front, where it has the following quote:

Wives who cook and
Wash the dishes
Should be granted
These Three Wishes
A grateful mate,
a well-kissed cheek
And a restaurant dinner
once a week!

Ahh the charming sexual politics of the 1960s.

Knowing what I know now, it would have been cool to bring the big camera and really document some of this stuff. But I have some snapshots and of course my memories.

2 Comment

  1. Sarah says:

    Cleaning out is HARD. We didn’t help with J’s dad’s house – just the apartment; but it’s a difficult process for all involved for sure. Glad you got a few souvenirs – we all need those things to help us remember.
    As for the sexual politics of the 60s, my MIL’s rule was that she didn’t cook on weekends. Starting Friday night, the family ate takeout until Sunday. Unfortunately, it was something J expected when we got married – while I keep trying to cook more and more.

  2. Ani says:

    What a bitter sweet day and time for you and your family indeed. Thinking good thoughts for your family during this time.

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